Sixteen members of the Anderson Artists Guild are part of the Abstract This exhibit that opened on April 6 and will run through May 17 at the Belton Center for the Arts.
Members in the show include Yolize Bowke, Matthew Brophy, Philip Cheney, Sue Cheney, Barbara Mickelson Ervin, Jane Friedman, Myrl Garment, Carolyn Gibson, Craig Johnson, Mary McAlister, Mary McDonough, Rosemary Moore, Mary Anne Porter, Armi Tuorila, Diana Walter, and Sue West. Below, some of them share thoughts on their artistic processes.
Myrl Garment: My entry is a watercolor and very bright with mixed colors. I had this at an outdoor show, and a little girl was really studying it for awhile. Then she smiled at me and said, oh there is a dancer there! After looking at it again, I decided yes, there was a dancer there after all, and the bright colors gave a feel of music with it. Various colors give different feelings to me, and I don't usually think of any particular design until I have some colors on the paper and mixing together. I like to see where they will take me in my thoughts and then I will continue adding to the painting.
Craig Johnson: The image is inspired by Mandlebrot sets or fractals. They are mathematics representations of the universe and can be hauntingly photographic in nature. Viewers of this piece wonder if they are seeing the interior of a cell under a microscope. Others wonder if they are seeing cosmic string or strands of interstellar dust clouds. There is no clear answer. I run a series of quadratic equations on my computer and then map colors based on the number of iterations of the equations. I will then use an LCD projector to map a layout onto the canvas. I paint the structure of the image per the calculations and then "ad lib" from there to create something artistic beyond the confines of the mathematics.
Jane Friedman: It started out as a small piece when I was playing around with some new pens I had bought. Much later I added color for fun. When the abstract blog came out I decided to enlarge it for the show.
Carolyn Gibson: I titled this Stacked. It is a combination of stacked chairs and stacked cups. I like to take the images that I photograph and experiment with design possibilities. Sometimes this morphs into total abstraction.
Sue West: This piece was created using cold wax and oil. I learned this technique in Terry Dimond’s workshop. While living in Chicago I had the opportunity to attend weekly life drawing sessions and have enjoyed abstracting the figure.
Diana Walter: The piece was inspired by a description of Kilt Rock Waterfall on Scotland’s Isle of Skye (home to generations of my father’s family). It’s said that the waterfall resembles a Scottish kilt—water rushing over vertical columns of volcanic rock look like pleats, and the colors from various stones and natural deposits give the illusion of an intricate plaid pattern.
Yolize Bowker: I have a small cabin on my father’s farm that I use for my art studio. I had been collecting pieces from the studio to be displayed at the Anderson YMCA and was standing on the porch overlooking the area where our pet sheep were grazing. I was pondering the peacefulness of the setting and how blessed I am to have an art studio with pet sheep surrounding me so I decided to take a photo of my woolly friends. Later when I looked at the photo I noticed the strange optical illusion that looked like a painted abstract tree when turned vertically.
Mary McDonough: This is the first piece in my "west coast" series. Both of my sons live in Oregon, so I'm out there at least once a year. I use mixed media to reflect my image/feelings of our surroundings—the world I'm in with everybody else. I change colors and shapes and build up the surface with textures.
Rosemary Moore: Lately I have been working with a cruciform format. This is painted with acrylic. I enjoy painting with an abstract format, using a lot of color, basically using the primary colors with accents.
Mary McAlister: This painting appeared on a resurrected canvas. The already applied yellow, orange, and red provided the stage for these exuberant beings. I added some defining strokes to their bodies and to their hands; a few pen lines created these dancing figures.