galleries

The Artwork of Kate Mitchell

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I was recently invited to be guest curator at the gallery at Friends Homes at Guilford in Greensboro, NC – a retirement community full of really cool people. Retired professors, artists, authors, and other professionals admire the work displayed there. I was honored to have a solo show there last October and fell in love with the place.

When Yvonne, the curator, approached me about guest curating an exhibit of student art, I immediately thought of Kate Mitchell and her wonderful prints! I knew she would have enough really strong work to fill the gallery with a solo show.

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Floating – Aquatint and Drypoint etiching on Rives BFK 11 1/4″ x 17 3/4″

Kate is a student artist at Guilford College. Her work is flawless. She works really hard and is fairly prolific even at her young age; she’s a junior this year. She makes fantastic, meticulous drawings,  woodcut and linocut prints.

I first met Kate a couple years ago while I was a TA for Roy Nydorf’s woodcut printing class at Guilford. Then we took an etching class together. Kate has a tenacious work ethic and meticulous attention to detail. She works harder than most artists I know. Plus she is just an excellent human being.

When we hung Kate’s prints and I looked at them all together as a body of work, I saw how autobiographical they are. Her subjects resemble Kate herself, although she says that’s coincidental.  I absolutely love how Kate illuminates the subtle beauty of life!

I was proud and delighted to be involved in bringing Kate’s beautiful work to The Friends Homes. The artist talk was a success – packed with people admiring Kate’s work and asking interesting questions. Kate’s French Braids print brought viewers back to their childhoods. And there were several questions about Kate’s carving and printing processes.

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French Braids – Linocut on white Rives BFK 12″ x 6 1/4″

Here’s Kate’s artist statement from the show:

My name is Kate Mitchell and I am a junior Art major, specializing in Printmaking, at Guilford College. I didn’t know I wanted to be a printmaker until my sophomore year when I took Roy Nydorf’s woodcut class. I absolutely fell in love with the amount of discipline and attention to detail that printmaking demands. It takes strength and thought and care, which is all I could ever wish to portray through my work. This is a collection of both linocut relief prints and etchings that I have made in the last two years.

Linocut is a printmaking technique where a design is carved into a sheet of linoleum. The raised, uncarved, areas are then inked and transferred onto paper, resulting in a mirror image of the carved design. Etching is an intaglio technique of printmaking that involves the use of metal plates and acid erosion. Intaglio means that, instead of applying the ink to the surface of the plate, the ink is held in acid-created indents or incisions made in the plates and the surface is wiped clean. Just like with linocuts, the inked areas are then transferred onto paper, resulting in a finished print.

 

Although the opening reception and the show are in the recent past, you can still check out Kate’s work on her website: http://www.katemitchellart.com

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September – Linocut on Mulberry 24″ x 16″

 

Painting, preparing, maybe a little fretting…

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I’m getting ready for my next solo show. Time is ticking. It’s down to the wire, as they say. I wonder what the origin of that saying is…

Oh, Thanks, Google:

down to the wire
phrase of wire
  1. 1.
    informal
    used to denote a situation whose outcome is not decided until the very last minute.
    “it was probable that the test of nerves would go down to the wire”

Well, it’s not exactly that. I have in my mind how the show will look and I think it will be well received. It’s just amazing how much time it takes to plan a thing– arranging and rearranging it in your head, diagrams on paper, deliberating, deciding, sourcing objects for an installation portion of the show, and trying not to be distracted by other pressing issues like searching for another rental house that fits in my budget with extra room for a studio. 

The theme of this show is Clairsentience.

I love old and vintage things: treasures hunted and inherited. I wonder about how I’m drawn to them, what they mean to me, who they belonged to previously. Monumental objects that require immortalization as well as small almost incidental items that collected dust on a grandmother’s shelf for ages.

“We leave a little of ourselves in the objects that are precious to us.” I’m fascinated by how things become an extension of a person: who and what we construct a person to be from the things they leave behind. Old photos, baby shoes, toys,  tools, a favorite teacup…

Clairsentience, also referred to as psychometry or psychometrics, is the ability to perceive the history of an object or person by touching it.

And I’m working to finish one additional painting for the show. A lonely little somersaulting clown. I feel like that little clown, out of control until his gears wind down, next week after a grande opening reception…

The Bless Her Heart Art Gallery

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Waiting in line for my chai latte this morning, I overheard something about Paris and Art and I pricked up my ears:

“You know, when I was in the service, I was stationed in Paris. Right across from the Louvre; you know, the Looooovv? You could spend a whole day in there! Ya know the Mona Lisa is only about that big? Yup! Ya know, the only thing I didn’t like about Paris…was the people!”

Just when ya think there’s some hope for humanity, when the lines seem to start to blurr and someone not typically inclined toward appreciating art can see and recognize something of greatness. And then…? Nope…nope…he is really an asshole.

But then you happen along something that’s just so sweet in it’s simpleness. Just so sincere and you gotta appreciate it for what it is: some folks trying to make the world a prettier place. I saw these photos and just fell in love with the truly unintentional kitsch of this thing.

And I thought it should be called The Bless Her Heart Art Gallery. I love it…

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And my very favorite…

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snapshots courtesy of theyetiden

A Hurricane and a Pumpkin Ale Make a Gallery Hop Complete

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I recently joined Delurk Gallery, an artist run gallery in Winston-Salem, NC. Friday was the first opening reception that I participated in with them. The art district’s monthly Gallery Hop is on the first Friday of every month and Delurk has a new show each month with the opening reception coinciding with the Gallery Hop.

It was a rainy windy evening with the threat of hurricane Joaquin headed our way. Although the weather cut down on the number of visitors we had, it gave us Delurkers time to chat and get to know each other. What a great group of people! I’m really excited to be a part of it–an established gallery with a group of strong artists dedicated to a common goal, working together to make things happen. And they’re all making amazing artwork!

After the few dedicated Gallery Hoppers, undaunted by the weather, cleared out, we turned out the lights, closed up shop and decided to go have a beer upon the suggestion of a new friend and fellow gallery member. 

We headed down to Single Brothers, a cozy local pub. I was told that they’re known for their delicious mixed drinks and local beers on tap. We got our drinks and headed for a table out on their patio. Sitting outside under their curagated metal roof so engrossed in conversation over delicious pumpkin flavored drafts, we finally noticed the wind getting stronger, the rain pouring down harder and the temperature dropping; we decided it was time to bid farewell and go home.