detail

Painting

Vignette: Sharon Matisoff

"For the Roses" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, oil on canvas (2017)

"For the Roses" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, oil on canvas (2017)


“Painting allows me to transform my perceptions of the world into portraits and figurative compositions.” — Sharon Matisoff


"Self-Portait" by Sharon Matisoff

"Self-Portait" by Sharon Matisoff

Sharon Matisoff likes to paint portraits, but as an artist in Kentucky, the temptation of thoroughbred horse racing as a subject is inevitable.  “Although I’ve always painted people, recently I discovered the joys of equine painting. Now I primarily divide my artistic attention between these two subjects. Horses are poetry in motion and I aim to capture their grace and power when I paint them. It is gratifying to me that my portraiture skills are also useful in portraying the myriad ways in which people interact with horses. I feel as though my life as an artist is just beginning.”

Matisoff has been painting for years, but being newly retirement affords her the time to double down on her studio practice. Her slightly heightened sense of color is grounded in naturalism, and her sensitive observation of detail, which has always been a key element of her portraiture, is put into good use in her behind the scenes images of the world of horses. Her perspective on the racing form of the horse and jockey are adept, but the fact that her sensibility is drawn to the more workaday aspects of the equine world is telling.

"Catching Up" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

"Catching Up" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

"Chillin'" by Sharon Matisoff, 27x19in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

"Chillin'" by Sharon Matisoff, 27x19in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

“I often work in pastel when I’m so inspired that I don’t want to stop and mix colors or stretch a canvas. The desire to paint is so strong that I must immerse myself in a painting all at once. Pastel painting allows me to be fearless with the elements of art in the most lyrical way. Oil painting is a language that I learned later in life, and so demands a more considered approach. With the elaborate preparation that oil painting requires, I work in this medium when I feel very deeply about a subject and pastel is too ephemeral to convey the depth or complexity of the subject. Armed with these media, I feel as though I can interpret the subjects that touch my soul.”

Matisoff will be one of the featured artists in the Fall Equine Show at the Brown Gallery in the Brown Hotel. The show will be on display from September 1, 2017 through January 1, 2018.

Hometown: Oak Park, Michigan
Education: BA in Psychology from California State University-Northridge; Studied art at the Art Center College of Design (Pasadena, California)
Gallery Representation: Jessie's Art Gallery and Custom Framing (Frankfort, KY)
Website: http://www.sharonmatisoff.com/

"Before the Race" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

"Before the Race" by Sharon Matisoff, 19x36in, pastel on sanded paper (2017)

"Wild Blue" by Sharon Matisoff, 24x24in, oil on canvas (2017)

"Wild Blue" by Sharon Matisoff, 24x24in, oil on canvas (2017)

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

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Painting

Vignette: Joshua Jenkins

"Searching For Enlightenment" by Joshua Jenkins, 43 x 64 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

"Searching For Enlightenment" by Joshua Jenkins, 43 x 64 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)


“Art to me is the soul’s communication - a response to experience and life.” — Joshua Jenkins


"Summertime Contemplation" by Joshua Jenkins, 24 x 18 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

"Summertime Contemplation" by Joshua Jenkins, 24 x 18 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

Like any good Expressionist, Joshua Jenkins builds an atmosphere divorced from recognizable reality, and then populates it with figures of solidity that are often indistinct, occupying space as a mass but lacking the specifics of individual character. There is some detail in the faces he attaches to these figures, often on necks that protrude forward, so that the features often give the impression of a mask. Oftentimes the only insight provide for these figures are what they are holding: a stringed instrument is a common item, or a particular hat might give us some clue about the personality. Jenkins is more concerned with the composition and action of the paint, using setting and placement to suggest narrative.

“Some of the works in the show, like 'Summertime Contemplation' & 'Searching for Enlightenment' are an obvious transition from the body of work from my show Somewhere In Between Anxiety & Serenity,” states Jenkins. “There a lot of the paintings had more muted colors and calmer lines. A lot of these newer pieces harken back to my earlier work, the bolder style with warmer colors that I’m known for.”

"Summer Heat (detail)" by Joshua Jenkins

"Summer Heat (detail)" by Joshua Jenkins

"Summer Nights" by Joshua Jenkins, 48 x 30 x 1.5 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

"Summer Nights" by Joshua Jenkins, 48 x 30 x 1.5 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

For many artists, the theme of summer would conjure up images of sunbaked landscapes, perhaps a beach-lined coastline - open areas of escape. But in “Summer Heat”, Jenkins captures the claustrophobic swelter of a crowded urban environment. This artist’s summer also include a domestic scene of four figures in a modern day family in “Summer Nights”, and the detail of the faces is noticeably more developed, with hair and facial details that suggest an element of autobiography in the scene. As most of the paintings show figures of some universality, here we get the sense that Jenkins knows these people, that this is his summer, and not necessarily anyone else’s.

Jenkins’ solo show, Summertime, will be opening at Lenihan Sotheby’s International Realty, 3803 Brownsboro Road, August 10 with an Artist’s Open House from 5:00pm-7:30pm.

Hometown: Poughkeepsie, NY
Age: 30
Education: BA in Digital Media with a Minor in Studio Art, Marist College (Poughkeepsie, New York)
Gallery Representative: Joshua is self-represented locally, but has works available at Revelry Gallery, KORE Gallery, New Editions Gallery (Lexington, KY), and at Caza Sikes (Cincinnati, OH)
Website: http://www.joshuajenkinsart.com

"Summer Heat" by Joshua Jenkins, 64 x 59 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2016-2017)

"Summer Heat" by Joshua Jenkins, 64 x 59 x 1 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2016-2017)

"Summer Nights (detail)" by Joshua Jenkins

"Summer Nights (detail)" by Joshua Jenkins

"Nature’s Musicians" by Joshua Jenkins, 36 x 48 x 1.5 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

"Nature’s Musicians" by Joshua Jenkins, 36 x 48 x 1.5 in, acrylic and mixed media on canvas (2017)

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

Are you interested in being on Artebella?  Click here  to learn more.

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Photography

Vignette: Sid Webb


“I think of art as making a statement about the artist’s time and place and/or turning points in techniques and tools that give the next generation of artists a new outlook.” — Sid Webb


"Skipping" by Sid Webb, 10x27in, photograph (2011), $89 |  BUY NOW

"Skipping" by Sid Webb, 10x27in, photograph (2011), $89 | BUY NOW

Photographer, Sid Webb

Photographer, Sid Webb

Sid Webb creates in a variety of mediums, and today we see some of his photographs. “I have taken nearly 100,000 photographs,” claims Webb, “and although I am tempted by beaches, mountains, sunsets, and sunrises and their breath-taking beauty as much as anyone, I rarely find lasting substance in such images. We can count the significant landscape photographers on one hand. Landscape painters fare a little better because technique and interpretation come into play.”

Webb prefers people as subjects for his camera. Here we see a young boy approaching a large 17th-century canon at Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine with appropriate trepidation, sheepishly inching his foot forward, a look eager anticipation mixed with supreme caution on his face. The shot is from a distant, raised point-of-view, and if the child had a clue he was being photographed, would he have been so expressive?

"Cigar Roller" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2013), $45 |  BUY NOW

"Cigar Roller" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2013), $45 | BUY NOW

The locations here cover a range of territory, from Germany to Portugal, and Webb’s camera finds the ordinary, universal truths of people instead of the divisive artificial barriers that arise from nations and politicians. Webb sees people experiencing the wonders of the world as a respite from their normal, daily existence.

“It is my feeling that about 80 percent of creating art is the process of making it,” says Webb. “By which I mean just being focused and absorbed in the process of creation. Another 15 percent or so has to do with skill and craft, and 5 percent is drawn from our sensitivity to the world around us and how finely tuned we are to form and balance and color. Somewhere in this mix is a bit of rational thinking and reasoning that lead us in deciding subject matter and content. Generally, artists are thought of as being creative and original. And artists think of themselves in those terms, too.”

Hometown: Lexington, KY
Education: Majored in journalism and political science, University of Kentucky; Atlanta School of Art (High Museum)
Website: http://www.sidwebb.com/

"Skipping (detail)" by Sid Webb

"Skipping (detail)" by Sid Webb

"Boys and Guns" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2014), $45 |  BUY NOW

"Boys and Guns" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2014), $45 | BUY NOW

"Boys and Guns (detail)" by Sid Webb

"Boys and Guns (detail)" by Sid Webb

"Fairy Dust" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2013), $45 |  BUY NOW

"Fairy Dust" by Sid Webb, 11x17in, photograph (2013), $45 | BUY NOW

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

Are you interested in being on Artebella?  Click here  to learn more.

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Drawing

Vignette: Sarah Johnson


“Iconography has given me the opportunity to undergo a reflection and transformation…”
— Sarah Johnson


"The Holy Trinity" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"The Holy Trinity" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

At this point, it is fair to say that all art speaks to tradition; even the most radical work usually sees Dadaism as an ancestor. There was a time when virtually the only way to make a living as an artist was to create religious imagery – the church was one of the only paying customers, and private collectors rarely wanted secular art, except for portraits. Iconography is not always religious, but the use of recurrent symbols and themes in churches arguably laid the foundation of how we think about such things. Sarah Johnson here picks up that tradition in designs that show fealty to the rigid, highly symmetrical compositional formula that were essential in this work, but with a soupcon of individual interpretation in the details of character.

“I have the opinion that art is supposed to reflect to its audience a message,” says Johnson. “I believe art has a very significant role to play in our daily and personal lives as well as having the capacity to influence our entire culture, spiritually and politically. The best examples of that kind of art have one thing in common: it touches the soul. I have a strong desire to share my belief and perspective and Iconography has given me the opportunity to undergo a reflection and transformation and to learn a time-tested medium. I aim to continue in my study in Iconography.”

So Johnson’s images are unabashedly ecclesiastical; a personal expression of spirituality rooted in the long and rich historical traditions employed by some of the greatest artists the world has known: Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, not to mention untold numbers whose specific identity has been lost to time.

Hometown: Maysville, Kentucky
Age: 32
Education: Studied at the Art Academy of Cincinnati
Website: http://www.sarahcatherinejohnson.wordpress.com

"Christ Pantocrator" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"Christ Pantocrator" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"Archangel Michael" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"Archangel Michael" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"Saint Andrew" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

"Saint Andrew" by Sarah Johnson, 14x22in, graphite on paper (2017)

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

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Mixed Media

Q&A: Deborah Stanley


“Experience will be more valuable than anything learned in the classroom.”
— Deborah Stanley


Artist Deborah Stanley

Artist Deborah Stanley

Deborah Stanley has been a juried member of the Louisville Artisans Guild (LAG) since 2011 and a member of the Louisville Visual Art (LVA) since 2014 and have been a participatant in the Art[squared] project since its inception.  Her work has been displayed and featured in various art galleries and exhibitions in the Louisville area such as LAG 2016 Holiday Showcase and 2016 Annual Exhibit; Kaviar Forge and Gallery (Touched with Fire, 2016 and The Figure Revealed, 2014, juried participant); Gallery 104 in La Grange, KY (the 2014 Red Show, juried participant), 2013 Crafts of Kentucky Exhibition, (juried participant), JCC Patio Gallery Presents Louisville Artisans Guild, 2013, the 2012 and 2013 Brown-Foreman Annual Pride Fair, The KORE Gallery (former partner), 2012 September Art Fair Mellwood Art Center, juried participant, Louisville Artisans Guild Annual Art Exhibit, and The Women's Club of Louisville (2012 Annual No-Jury Art Show).

When did you first think you would be an artist?

2004

Who or what inspires you now?

Beautiful and colorful visual imagery in nature or photo images  

"Lukas" by Deborah Stanley, 8x10in, polymer clay (2016) $350 |  BUY NOW

"Lukas" by Deborah Stanley, 8x10in, polymer clay (2016) $350 | BUY NOW

Your work is unique, and blurs many lines. How did you come to work with polymer clay?

I was working on an art project with my young son and needed something different and colorful that would be easy enough for a child to make into simple shapes. However, I found an immediate connection and affinity for the feel of the clay and the endless possibilities I saw when the colors are blended. 

You describe yourself as an “abstract expressionist,” yet the images also contain representational figures and faces – talk about how you balance the two strains in your work?

I strive to express an emotion or feeling with every piece I create. While many of my creations contain representational figures and faces, my concentration is on communicating emotion or feeling rather than trying to create a technically correct replica of a particular subject. I would say my balance of the two strains is giving just enough technical detail to capture the essence of the subject and let abstract expressionism take over from there.

"  Gypsy Dancer" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 |  BUY NOW

"Gypsy Dancer" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 | BUY NOW

If you could do anything else but make art, what would it be?

Photography. I have always had a passion for photography and previously owned and operated a photography business specializing in wedding and family photographs.

What frightens you the most?

Bugs!

What challenges you more than anything?

Coloring within the lines.

What is your favorite music to listen to when making art?

R&B/hip hop/rap/oldies/pop  

Vinyl or CD?

iTunes - Sorry but if I have to choose between the two, it would be CD

What advice would you give a young artist just out of college?

Experience will be more valuable than anything learned in the classroom. Keep working and never feel like you've "arrived". You will always improve if you keep working.

Tell us about an important moment of transition for you as an artist?

For my first several years as an artist, I exclusively created abstract designs, always determined to "let go/let flow" with the clay. A few years ago, I accepted a commission, which required the inclusion of a representational figure. This commission challenged me to find the most creative way to express freedom while meeting the requirement of my client. This was a pivotal moment for me and gave me the outlet to express myself or an idea or feeling in every piece I now create.

"Sheba" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 |  BUY NOW

"Sheba" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 | BUY NOW

How do you feel about local art scene in Louisville? What would you change about it?

I love the art scene in Louisville. As a transplant from the Washington, DC area, I was pleasantly surprised at how art friendly Louisville is. Just walking downtown and admiring the artistic bike racks and generations of "Gallopalooza" horse statues is always entertaining. There are plenty of galleries and venues that are very welcoming for local artists of all levels. I wouldn't change a thing.

Has your style changed or evolved over the years? If so what do you think influenced this?

Yes. As I described above, my style has evolved from strictly abstract, to Abstract Expressionism utilizing representational figures or faces. It was a required element in a new commission, so I had to give it a try and have not looked back!

MV5BMzMzNzU0NzQ1NF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNTMzOTEzMQ@@._V1_SY1000_SX670_AL_.jpg

Favorite movie?

"Something New"

If you could meet any celebrity who would it be and what would you ask them?

Boy George. I would ask him where his courage comes from to have demanded to live and look his own way since childhood. His love of freedom and honest way of expressing himself has always been an inspiration to me.

Hometown: Silver Spring, Maryland
Age: 52
Education: Studied Business Administration and Sociology at Montgomery College in Rockville, MD
Website: http://www.aegalleryshop.com

"Color Chameleon" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 |  BUY NOW

"Color Chameleon" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016) $425 | BUY NOW

"The People's Champ" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016)

"The People's Champ" by Deborah Stanley, 9x12in, polymer clay (2016)

"The Purplest" by Deborah Stanley, 11x142in, polymer clay (2016), $500   |  BUY NOW

"The Purplest" by Deborah Stanley, 11x142in, polymer clay (2016), $500 | BUY NOW

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

Are you interested in being on Artebella?    Click here    to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.