I’ve come full circle.
When I was a toddler living in Brooklyn, my mom would sit me on the floor with scrap paper and crayons and I’d keep myself busy for hours. When I was a bit older I’d play with my dolls, make things out of paper (like a pocketbook for my mom) or I’d be in our basement painting (making a mess, really) with canvas and paints. When I was 9 years old my mom, single at the time, took me to oil painting classes at the home of Ann Basilico. I will never forget that woman’s name, my first mentor, and I will always be so grateful to my mom who sacrificed things she likely wanted to buy for herself in order to afford those classes for me.
Right about that same time, mom also encouraged me to get out of the house to meet and play with the girls down the block. But I was reluctant.
You see, I was a loner. I enjoyed my time alone playing with my dolls, making things out of paper, coloring with crayons and painting with oils.
Just being creative, all by myself.
As the years passed, I dabbled in many mediums, e.g., oils, acrylics, watercolors, alcohol inks, scratchboard, ceramics, assemblage, porcelain dolls, paper dolls, carved eggs, Washi eggs. About a year ago, I finished a series of oil paintings - yes, the medium that mom initiated for me - based on the photographs I took in 2013 when I lived in Italy for three months. I wanted to prove to myself and to others that I could paint realism in oils.
It was a goal I believe I accomplished.
But, you see, all along I was a loner. I became good friends with those girls down the block and have made many friends since then here and abroad, but here I am now, close to 60 years old, still greatly enjoying my time alone. Creating, Making art.
In 2018, I created about a dozen oil paintings from the 2,000+ photos I took while I lived in Italy.
Getting back into oils and painting these scenes from Italy was a trip down memory lane.
Today, I’m creating something entirely new. Something different. Something with glass and mannequins as my substrate and lights to illuminate them. How did I come up with this idea? Well, I see my art as a metaphor for life and the people in it. On the surface, there’s roughness. Dangerous to touch. And definitely not perfect.
But just beneath the surface, what’s there? Beauty? Light? An interesting array of color and sparkle?
The answers you seek are there. Just look. With care.
And thank you for reading my story.
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