artistic

Drawing

Vignette: Susan E. Brooks


“How do we respond to the stark contrasts and overwhelming misery that exist in our world?”
- Susan Brooks


"Burkina Boy and His Donkey" by Susan Brooks, 31x20in, pastel on mat board (2017)

"Burkina Boy and His Donkey" by Susan Brooks, 31x20in, pastel on mat board (2017)

Susan Brooks is a children’s book illustrator, drawing on her own life experience in Mozambique, Africa, and Turkish Cypress to create original stories. Her images are prosaic, with notes of affectionate sentimentalism. “As an artist I am fascinated with the human countenance,” explains Brooks. “I believe every person is created in the image of God, having an inner light that can sometimes be captured or at least hinted at in great art. The challenge of creating a painting that gives the viewer pause, that causes them to feel a connection with the divine through beauty, keeps me returning to my first artistic love, portrait drawing and painting.”   

On her website, Brooks talks about how some of her images are inspired by her encounters with poverty: “How do we respond to the stark contrasts and overwhelming misery that exist in our world? How can we help? Guilt and shame are not the answer. The answer is probably different for each one of us.”

Brooks taught art for many years, including her current position at Portland Christian School. She has worked in various mediums, but she uses primarily oil pastels now. “I have developed a style of painting with oil pastels that results in striking portraits that glow with dramatic light, various textures, and complementary color contrasts. I work with oil pastels on a textured surface of mat board or pastel paper, which allows me to build up many layers of color with a thick, buttery, texture in some areas, while leaving other areas thin, allowing the background colors and the texture of the surface to show. For me, working with oil pastels is the best of both worlds, allowing for painterly textures and colors combined with expressive mark making.”

"Tanzanian Children" by Susan Brooks, 17x20in, pastel on paper (2017)

"Tanzanian Children" by Susan Brooks, 17x20in, pastel on paper (2017)

Brooks is a member of the American Impressionist Society, Inc. & Louisville Visual Art, and has been included in Fine Art America’s Artist Listings.

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: Bachelor of Fine Arts from Lipscomb University 1985; Master of Education from Indiana Wesleyan, 2007
Website: http://www.susanebrooks.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sebrooks81/

"Keeping Up with Big Sister" by Susan Brooks, 14x11in, pastel on paper (2017)

"Keeping Up with Big Sister" by Susan Brooks, 14x11in, pastel on paper (2017)

"Ollie at the Beach" by Susan Brooks, 19x25in, pastel on paper (2017)

"Ollie at the Beach" by Susan Brooks, 19x25in, pastel on paper (2017)

"Tanzanian Children (detail)" by Susan Brooks

"Tanzanian Children (detail)" by Susan Brooks

"Reading with Poppy" by Susan Brooks, 25x19in, pastel on paper (2016)

"Reading with Poppy" by Susan Brooks, 25x19in, pastel on paper (2016)

"Ollie at the Beach (detail)"  by Susan Brooks

"Ollie at the Beach (detail)"by Susan Brooks

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. 

Written by Keith Waits.      Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. 

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. 

Painting

Q&A: Julie Rolwing


"When I am lost in my work, my mind is off of everything else and the troubles of our world seem to disappear." – Julie Rolwing


"Downtown at Dusk" by Julie Rowling, 11x14in, mixed media on cold press water color paper (2016), $225 (matted & framed) |  BUY NOW

"Downtown at Dusk" by Julie Rowling, 11x14in, mixed media on cold press water color paper (2016), $225 (matted & framed) | BUY NOW

While she was always interested in art, Julie Rolwing only began painting about four years ago through a class at Gilda’s Club of Louisville. Rolwing had undergone treatment for breast cancer followed by a back injury that has left her permanently disabled. She endeavors to paint every day and has sold several through social media but, because of her physical disabilities, has yet to exhibit in a gallery.

You started painting only four years ago. Tell us how and why you got started.

I started painting after having participated in an art therapy class at Gilda’s Club that I became involved with after my treatment for breast cancer. I had been attending the class for a year or so before I broke down and bought some paints of my own and set up a studio. It was through this class that I discovered that I was indeed a pretty talented painter.  

I have always been artistic but never really painted. My father and brother were painters and I think I felt intimidated by them. Though I studied art in my early years at Western Kentucky University, I was more into textiles. Painting, to me seemed too messy! I regret that I did not finish my art education and wish I knew more about history and technique. Though I seldom follow rules in my painting, as I believe that the best work often comes by accident, I think it’s good to have the foundation.

Would you describe your painting as therapeutic? What does it mean to you?  

Yes, definitely! Sometimes I feel as though I go through withdrawal if too many days go by and I haven’t painted something, I try to paint every day - at the very minimum I paint on the weekends.

"Untitled" by Julie Rowling, mixed media on metalic matte board (2016), $225 (framed) |  BUY NOW

"Untitled" by Julie Rowling, mixed media on metalic matte board (2016), $225 (framed) | BUY NOW

Who or what inspires you now?

I continue to be inspired by my late father and often while I paint, I can feel his presence. Family members have told me that my work looks so much like his that it is hard to tell the difference. I consider that the greatest of compliments! My friend and mentor, Mary Scott Blake, who facilitates the class at Gilda’s Club, also continually inspire me. While most of the time I jump ahead of her instruction and go way off the page, I have learned so much from her. I would not be painting today if it had not been for her time and dedication. Watching others create also inspires me. Each March I facilitate a charity-painting workshop to benefit Gilda’s Club of Louisville and I am so inspired by the work of the participants, I spend several months painting from that inspiration. 2017 will be our third year to hold this benefit. 

What frightens you the most?   

I think what frightens me the most is the uncertain economy – while we have bounced back from the last recession, the election has brought more uncertainty.   The lack of compassion I have seen, scares the heck out of me – though in a good way it has sent me into my studio more so than it might have otherwise.  

"Water Lilies" by Julie Rowling, 9x11in, liquid water color and pen and ink on cold press water color paper (2016), $125 (matted & framed) |  BUY NOW

"Water Lilies" by Julie Rowling, 9x11in, liquid water color and pen and ink on cold press water color paper (2016), $125 (matted & framed) | BUY NOW

What are you reading right now?

I AM A BOOK JUNKY! I have 1628 books on my Kindle and 587 on my Nook.  I easily have at least five books going at one time. I like mostly humorous novels set in the South – I just read one by Anne River Siddons that I enjoyed. That said, about every fifth book or so I feel needs to be edifying in some way – either spiritually or historically. Last week I read a biography of Harriet Beecher Stowe that I found to be extremely fascinating.  

"Tiger Lilly" by Julie Rowling, 8x10in,  acrylic and water color mix on canvas panel  (2016),   $175 (double matted & framed) |   BUY NOW

"Tiger Lilly" by Julie Rowling, 8x10in, acrylic and water color mix on canvas panel (2016), $175 (double matted & framed) |  BUY NOW

If you were given $100,000 what would do with it?

Buy a new car and then hit the road and travel the United States for a couple of months staying in Bed & Breakfast Inns in small towns across the country.  

What does art mean to you?

Art is not only a means of expression for me it is also a mean of escape. When I am lost in my work, my mind is off of everything else and the troubles of our world seem to disappear.

What do you feel is your greatest flaw?

That’s easy – I buy too many books! I also have too many projects going at one time and I am impatient with my work. I could never work on a painting for more than two days, which is why I like small watercolors. I have also been told I don’t charge enough for my pieces but the way I look at it, I do them to share with other people and not everyone can afford to spend hundreds of dollars on a painting. I feel like if I invest fifty dollars in a painting and sell it for $100 - $150, I’ve made nice profit and I am not really trying to earn a living.

What's your favorite place to visit?  

That is hard to say since I am not that well traveled. I have been to NYC and Chicago and LA. I have to say I was in total awe of Chicago. Places I want to visit include New Orleans, Savannah, GA, the Carolinas, Martha’s Vineyard and Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Age: 56
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jaie.rolwing

"Nora" by Julie Rowling, 11x14in, acrylic, liquid water color, pencil and coffee (2016), $195 (matted & framed) |  BUY NOW

"Nora" by Julie Rowling, 11x14in, acrylic, liquid water color, pencil and coffee (2016), $195 (matted & framed) | BUY NOW

Entire contents copyright © 2016 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

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Painting, Ceramics

Vignette: David Keator

A photograph of David Keator taken by Geoff Carr.

A photograph of David Keator taken by Geoff Carr.

“ Resurgence ” by David Keator, 30x38in, oil on canvas (2014), $1000 |  BUY NOW

Resurgence” by David Keator, 30x38in, oil on canvas (2014), $1000 | BUY NOW

During the first part of his life as an artist, David Keator was celebrated for unique ceramic work: traditional forms such as vessels and pots featuring details of great delicacy, but also furniture pieces. Dorothy Weil, writing in Cincinnati Magazine in June 1986 describes how Keator’s work at that time, “…brings out the elegant side of Art Deco. His tables are crafted of wood, marble, and porcelain, and have formal, classic, straight lines and pretty Deco blues and pinks. Humor and whimsy come out when Keator decides to throw in zigzag legs or create a table and vase in one.” 

Keator worked in Louisville for many years, including a stint as Professor of Ceramics at the Louisville School of Art. Later he moved to Florida and, in his last years, turned to painting when arthritis made the intricacy of his ceramics work a challenge. In a statement from 2013, Keator talked about the change in medium: “Paint became my new fascination and ‘creative outlet.’ My paintings are non-representational. They are a search for the impression or expression of objects or subjects in a spontaneously responsive manner.”

Perhaps there is more of a relationship between the work with which Keator made his reputation and the work with he makes his last artistic statements. The sophisticated surface treatments on clay give way to a more abstract but no less sophisticated development of the painted canvas surface. Curvilinear figures and jewel-like geometric shapes echo the Deco qualities Weil refers to 30 years ago. The nature of the work may have changed over time, but the character of it remains consistent to Keator’s overall aesthetic.

A silent auction of David Keator’s paintings will be held at Headliner’s Music Hall in Louisville November 6 from 4:00-6:00pm. All proceeds will go to Louisville Visual Arts and the Louisville Fund for the Arts.

David Keator
(1951-2016)

"Abrupt Turbulence" by David Keator, 15x20.5in, oil on canvas (2014), $600   |  BUY NOW

"Abrupt Turbulence" by David Keator, 15x20.5in, oil on canvas (2014), $600 | BUY NOW

“Fallen Skies” by David Keator, 13x31in, oil on canvas, $950 |  BUY NOW

“Fallen Skies” by David Keator, 13x31in, oil on canvas, $950 | BUY NOW

“Gathering Impulses” by David Keator, 10.5x29.5, oil on canvas (2014) $800 |  BUY NOW

“Gathering Impulses” by David Keator, 10.5x29.5, oil on canvas (2014) $800 | BUY NOW

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Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2016 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Please contact    josh@louisvillevisualart.org    for further information on advertising through Artebella.

Please contact josh@louisvillevisualart.org for further information on advertising through Artebella.

Photography

Curatorial Spotlight: culturALLandscape

 "Art is part and parcel of a cumulative and collective enterprise, viewed as seen fit by the prevailing culture.  It isn’t just the result of an unencumbered creative act. Everything that is seen and understood is part of a work and art is always a collaboration with all that came before you, that co-exists with you, and that comes after you." — Louise Lawler

Sarah Lyon,   Steven Irwin  , 2006,  Archival Pigment Print,  40x40in

Sarah Lyon, Steven Irwin, 2006, Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

Tom LeGoff,   Matt  ,  2013, Inkjet Print

Tom LeGoff, Matt2013, Inkjet Print

The intersection of a geographic location and the culture it sustains is marked by how a physical place both supports and is reciprocally shaped by human involvement. Cultural landscape refers to the coalescence of a place with the people who inhabit it and encompasses works of art, narratives of culture, and expressions of regional identity tied to that specific place. Surveying the social and artistic topography of a place reveals aspects of its origins and development, as well as the interconnectivity of the relationships between the physical location, society and its structures.

The provenance of Louisville’s current cultural landscape can be accessed through the juxtaposition and alignment of the work of two photographers living and working in the city– one native and the other a recent transplant. The accompanying artworks unearth narratives about the area’s human geography- how a place and the people that produce creative output in that place serve as the bedrock of its vernacular landscape. The portraits shown here depict individuals who contribute to and enrich the area’s cultural terroir- affirming that the creative outpouring that takes place here is unique and incapable of being reproduced elsewhere. The individuals represented here may be preceded by their reputation. They may perhaps be more easily identifiable by the fruits of their creative labor - the artwork they create, music they produce, or performances they direct- than by their names or faces alone. But portrayed in and through their most valued environments, the resulting images reveal the virtues of the person depicted in equal measure with the backdrop against which they are situated.

Sarah Lyon,   Natalie Sud ,  2008,  Archival Pigment Print,  40x40in

Sarah Lyon, Natalie Sud, 2008, Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

Sarah Lyon originally viewed her photographic practice as a means through which she could experience her native city, as though she were an outsider exploring it for the first time. She began translating her personal relationships and experiences into an alternative way of mapping the city and its human and geographic landmarks. Out of this practice grew a portrait series that allows Lyon to become better acquainted with those who accompany her on these explorations, synthesizing them with their own personal environments.

The people with whom Lyon re-discovers her city are the figures who appear in her photographs. Consistently situated within a wide visual plane, the space and distance afforded to the figures facilitates an unimposing co- existence between the subject and the viewer. Allowing the viewer to soak in the totality of situational factors that shape the subject’s identity. Lyon’s photographs convey a sense of rootedness, giving prevalence to place and obscuring the distinction between whether the subject’s identity is informed by the impact they have on their locale, or the impact their locale has on them.

Tom LeGoff,   Chris  , 2015, Inkjet Print

Tom LeGoff, Chris, 2015, Inkjet Print

Tom LeGoff approaches his subjects as a self-proclaimed outsider, his portraits less burdened with history and interpretation. After re-locating to the area four years ago, he familiarized himself with the city by considering those who prominently occupy the landscape. LeGoff’s work magnifies the inherently ‘other’ quality that inevitably accompanies notoriety, imbuing his photographs with an elevated sense of intrigue as he casts his subjects in various roles, as though they were characters in a film noir. Yet, these oft-solicited and dramatized relationships still subtly convey reality. LeGoff intently concerns himself with the parts his subjects play in the locale he shares with them. Without pretense of familiarity, he offers viewers delicate contextual clues from which to deduce their identity, as illustrated in is his photograph, Chris (2015).

This image shows the portrait of an artist who uses the scale of her own body as the guiding principle in the production of her artwork. Using materials such as shards of glass and airy mesh boxes as representations of her own weight and volume, she examines how those constructed representations relate to and react with the environment around them. Photographed near her studio in the Portland neighborhood, LeGoff poses Chris standing at centurion attention. LeGoff references Chris’ own artistic study, arranging the composition so that her figure occupies the same amount of visual space in the composition as the first column in the row of interstate pylons receding into the horizon, reinforcing the relationship between her form and the environment in which her form exists.

Sarah Lyon,   Jason Willar  , 2005,   Archival Pigment Print,  40x40in

Sarah Lyon, Jason Willar, 2005,  Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

Though examined from different vantage points, Lyon and LeGoff both identify the terroir that characterizes the unique cultural landscape within which they have personally and professionally entrenched themselves. By documenting their creative counterparts, not merely as an act of preservation, but as a means of acknowledging and propagating the artistic talent with which they co-exist, both Lyon and LeGoff participate in a camaraderie that nurtures a thriving creative ecology that is cross- pollinated by both ‘insiders’ and ‘outsiders’.

 Tom LeGoff,   Dean  , 2013,   Inkjet Print

 Tom LeGoff, Dean, 2013,  Inkjet Print

Sarah Lyon,    Kirby Coleman  , 2005,  Archival Pigment Print,  40x40in

Sarah Lyon, Kirby Coleman, 2005, Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

 Tom LeGoff,   Mo  , 2014,  Inkjet Print

 Tom LeGoff, Mo, 2014, Inkjet Print

Sarah Lyon,   Mitchell and Matthew Barney  , 2004, Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

Sarah Lyon, Mitchell and Matthew Barney, 2004, Archival Pigment Print, 40x40in

Tom LeGoff,   Dario  , 2015, Inkjet Print

Tom LeGoff, Dario, 2015, Inkjet Print

To contact these artists or to see more of their work, please visit
 www.sarahlyon.com or www.tomlegoff.com


This Curatorial Spotlight was written by Jessica Bennett Kincaid.
Jessica Bennett Kincaid is currently the Exhibitions Assistant at the University of Louisville Hite Art Institute. Her curated exhibitions include “Hugh Haynie: The Art of Opinion” at the Frazier History Museum, "All of Bob Lockhart" at Louisville Visual Art’s Public Gallery, and most recently, “Joshua Watts- Resonant Disclosures at the Cressman Center for Visual Arts. She studied at the University of Louisville Hite Art Institute, University of Kentucky, Institut Catholique de Paris, and Santa Reparata International School of Art.


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Written by Jessica Bennett Kincaid. Entire contents copyright © 2016 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Please contact    josh@louisvillevisualart.org    for further information on advertising through Artebella.

Please contact josh@louisvillevisualart.org for further information on advertising through Artebella.