Capturing the Soul with Plein Air – Meg West Paintings through June 2017

Our traveling plein air painter, Meg West, will be the featured artist in June at C-ville Arts. She will be at the gallery to meet you and share her stunning collection during the First Friday event on June 2nd, from 6 to 8.

Meg West just got back from six and a half weeks of traveling around the South Island of New Zealand. Small postcard size paintings, plein air style, plus local scenes of Albemarle, Highland, and Bath Counties are the focus of her latest work. “When you drive around New Zealand,” she recalls, “every bend in the road is exciting for a visual artist and what it has to offer. I hope to paint future studio paintings from my photographs.” 

En plein air or plein air painting, is a phrase borrowed from the French equivalent meaning “open (in plain) air”. It is particularly used to describe the act of painting outdoors, where a painter reproduces the actual visual conditions seen at the time of the painting. This method contrasts with studio painting or academic rules; those might create a predetermined look. “The fun and challenge of painting in all conditions of weather and changing atmosphere is part of the plein air spirit that I love.” says West.

Crozet resident of over 30 years, Meg paints plein air throughout the surrounding counties and especially loves painting the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive area. She and her husband traveled all around the South Island of New Zealand, this past March and April, in a small camper van. “Everyone in New Zealand loves to camp,” Meg explained, sharing her memories, “so many of the tourists plus the locals use the well-equipped campgrounds that are abundant throughout the country. I tried to do a small painting everywhere we went, all in gouache and mixed media.” 

To learn more about Meg’s work visit our web site https://cvillearts.org/our-artists/meg-west/

Eliza & Josie visit us from Reston

These posts always bring us joy, we are thrilled that our bench made you smile, Eliza and Josie!  

The note we received with the photo reads: “Eliza & Josie loved the Mosaic bench! We are in town to visit Monticello since they’ve been studying Thomas Jefferson at school. They attend Sunrise Valley ES in Reston, VA and the school mascot is the sun, so this piece of art was particularly fun for them. Thank you!”

Reflections of Earth from Within and Beyond

Our talented and determined glass fusion artist, Mary Ellen Larkins, will be our featured artist in May at C’ville Arts. She will be at the gallery to meet you and share her stunning collection during the First Friday Event on May 5th, 2017, from 6 to 8 p.m.

It was about 20 years ago when Mary Ellen first met and fell in love with glass and fire.  Watching this dazzling, yet hard and cold material, be transformed by intense heat into a multitude of art forms fascinated her from the beginning. At first, leaned on her graphic arts training to design stunning color blocked bowls and plates that might require three or four trips into the kiln to get the exact intended effect. Sometimes pieces were assembled into arresting sculptural forms.

As time went on, she wanted to move beyond this artful geometry into more lyrical representational use of the glass to form lovely landscapes, created from memories of her favorite places.  This latest technique involves “painting” with tiny fragments of crushed glass (called frit and powder) as though it were a liquid medium.  Numerous colored and patterned layers are created on thin sheets of glass, and sequentially fired in a 1400 degree kiln to form deep images. Sometimes enamels are used to create fine details or entire vistas.  Techniques may be combined, or even pushed into entirely new processes to get desired results.

The results of a kiln firing are always surprising, and usually happily so — but glass can be a harsh mistress.  It takes a great deal of technical knowledge and strategizing to get the desired effect without causing the glass to fracture or deform in an unintended way.  Sometimes days of work can be lost in a kiln mishap.  But usually the kiln door is opened to reveal a magical surprise full of rich color and flowing forms.

It is the challenge of this medium and the lovely effects not achievable in other art form that drives Mary Ellen along on her creative journey.

To learn more about Mary Ellen’s work visit her web site Maryellenlarkins.com.  

 

“Mending Souls One Stitch at a Time”, Quilts by Sally Mann through March 2017

Our talented quilter, Sally Mann, will be the featured member in March at C-ville Arts. She will be at the gallery to meet you and share her collection during the First Friday Event on March 3rd, 2017, from 6 to 8 p.m.

After taking early retirement in 2014 from a career in law and government policy, Sally embarked on a completely different adventure. Her love of fabric and color, together with an innate sense of order, soon coalesced into a second “career” of modern quilting. “Career – never! Been there, done that,” she says. “For me, quilting is simply a way to express the joy in my life now. So many of life’s events call for celebration, and quilts are a perfect way to memorialize them.”

Thus far, most of Sally’s quilts have been made for family and friends – personal keepsakes for remembering important events. Whether a red, white and blue quilt to commemorate America’s history, a Charlie Brown Christmas quilt for a child’s bed, or seasonal table toppers for home décor, memories and emotions are woven into the warp and weft of quilts, or perhaps they will become part of someone’s story across the coming years. Quilts are not just for piling on a bed in winter anymore. Now, the color and texture they bring to a room are like hugs waiting to be found, for quilts warm both body and soul.

 “All of my quilts are made of 100% cotton and are fully washable. In fact, many people (me included) love the slightly rumpled and wrinkly look of a washed quilt. Nearly all of the fabrics I use are from designers’ collections, many of which surprise with color combinations or astound with the depth and intensity of color.”

Like Mom’s chicken soup, hot chocolate and buttered toast, quilts wrap their arms around us, making a warm place where troubles can be put in their places and the day’s torments into perspective.

To learn more about Sally’s work visit www.cvillearts.org

“Paper Dreams – Contemporary Quilling” – New Work by Deb Booth through Feb 2017

Our talented quilling artist, Deb Booth will be the featured member in February

at C-ville Arts. She will be at the gallery to meet you and share her collection during the First Friday Event on February 3rd, 2017 from 6 to 8 p.m.

“My love of photography came as a result of a solo trip to Italy, in 2002.” Deb describes how she got started, “When I came back with over 1100 images, my husband bought me a printer – which came with digital editing software.  I began experimenting with the editing program, and I was hooked. I love taking “what is” and turning it into “what it COULD be.”” 

In February of 2015, Deb learned about contemporary quilling on Pinterest. Quilling is “the art” of making decorative designs out of thin strips of rolled paper. She adores playing with all the beautiful colored quilling papers, as well as cutting her own supply of quilling strips using colored cardstock. She works with strips as thin as 1/16th of an inch up to an inch wide.

Quilling is a way for Deb to let her thoughts, cares and worries recede, and allow Spirit to speak to, and through, her. “Quilling is the only thing I can sit down to do,” explains Booth, “and not look up again for four hours, never once thinking about the passage of time. What a joy!”

To learn more about Deb Booth’s work visit her web site www.DifferentLightStudio.com

“Marsha Heatwole – Recent Work” – January 2017

Our talented mixed media and etching artistMarsha Heatwole will be the featured member in January at C-ville Arts. She will be at the gallery to meet you and share her work during the First Friday Event, January 6th, 2017 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Marsha Heatwole is an established artist living in rural Virginia. Her travels to Africa afforded her the vast opportunity to experience the power of seeing. Marsha’s vision paired with her imagination form a whimsical representation in this collection. There’s a mature gratitude for the creatures and their inspirational magic that sparkles throughout her show.   

“Animals seem to me to portray a joy of aliveness and a path to our hearts.” Heatwole explains, “I strive to bring that wonder and playfulness into my art by studying the animal’s anatomy and characteristics, and then revealing that understanding through composition, gesture, and expressive color. This enables the personalities of my creatures to radiate their own special beauty.”

To learn more about Marsha Heatwole and her work visit her web site www.heatwole.com.

A Visit to our Mosaic Bench from Charlie, Luna, and Lynda

We love hearing from friends who enjoy our ‘Seat of Harmony’.  Here’s a note from some weekend visitors…

“We fell in love with Cville!

This was our first visit; we drove up from S.C. 

This is Kevin and Luna!

We will be back soon!  

Lynda Curtis”
Dec 2016

“Escaping to Childhood”, New Work by Milenko Catic – December 2016

Milenko Katic will be the featured artist this December at C-ville Arts on the Historic Downtown Mall in Charlottesville, Virginia. He will be present to greet you and share his work during the First Friday Event, December 2, 2016 from 6 to 8 p.m.

mas-image-familyandfriendsoct2016lgMilenko Katic is an established painter, his compositions often feature family and friends of varying ages together with creatures from the natural world.  In his work he expresses how they are a very important part of the world and our lives. He depicts a dream-like place with an innocence of childhood simplicity that can make your heart sing. Milenko loves animals and it shows.

Katic has discovered an honesty, a certain freedom in the studio reminiscent of purity and incorruptibility so many of us long for in this modern day existence. The visual language he has developed to convey these virtues is as mature as it is child-like guiding his audience away from chaos and suffering into a place of uncomplicated bliss.

To learn more about the work of Milenko Katic visit his web site www.milenkokaticartstudio.com

A Colorful Journey; Polymer Clay with Judith Ligon through November 2016

A Colorful Journey: Adventures in creating with Polymer clay and more

jnl-2016-image3Judith N. Ligon will be featured artist this November at C-ville Arts on the Historic Downtown Mall in Charlottesville, Virginia.  She will be present to greet you and share about her work at C-ville Arts during the First Friday Event, November 4, 2016 from 6 to 8 p.m.

While Ligon is known for her one-of-a-kind polymer clay cane work wearable art, visitors to C-ville Arts will also find creations such as heart ornaments, glass goblets with a veneer of colorful polymer clay cane work patterns and designs, interesting bowls and more. Don’t be surprised if you see her mixing polymer clay with metal or enameling too. Stretching one’s wings creatively is what it’s all about.

Judith N. Ligon/Ligon Art is a polymer clay cane work artisan, creating one-of-a-kind wearable art, treasure boxes, bowls, heart ornaments along with other colorful ornaments and more. Cane work is the process of creating a pattern or design with the polymer clay such that when sliced into individual sections the pattern or design can be seen within each slice.

jnl-2016-image1Ligon enjoys creating flowers, petals, leaves, seed pods and even things as viewed under a microscope. It’s the colors, patterns and designs that nature has in abundance which Judith finds so interesting and inspiring. While the focus is in creating canes from which to make any of her wearable art, Ligon will also include glass beads, metal or wood beads, etc. which compliments the focal polymer unit or units.

Polymer clay is man-made, petroleum based, which is cured by baking according to package instructions depending on the kind of clay being used. While Judith mainly creates with the brand Premo Sculpey Clay because it is known for its strength, color fastness, being streak free and durability, there are other brands such as Sculpey III, Cernit, Kato Klay, Fimo and more and each type of clay has its strengths and weaknesses according to what the person wants to make.   Polymer clay, available in many different colors, can be carved, painted, stamped, sculpted and can be used not only for beads or sculptures, but as a veneer for furniture, can be turned on a lathe after curing, and more. Experimenting with the clay and other materials is left up to the artist and it’s a fun adventure.

Included in her display this year, Judith will have a pictorial demo available for visitors to see which can begin to explain the process she utilizes in her creating. This holiday season is a good time for creating hand-made items and such creations are a gift from the heart.
You can find Judith’s creations on her website: wwwligonart.org; on FACEBOOK under her Ligon Art page or Judith Ligon page; on the Artisans Center of Virginia web site,  and her email address is ligonart1951@hotmail.com