Show Preview | Wendy Higgins

Santa Fe, NM
Sage Creek Gallery, October 7-21

Wendy Higgins, Perfectly Ripe, oil, 11 x 14.

Wendy Higgins, Perfectly Ripe, oil, 11 x 14.

This story was featured in the October 2016 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  October 2016 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

Wendy Higgins’ still lifes are in-depth studies of the natural world. Her bright oil paintings feature produce and plant life local to her home in Santa Fe, NM. She says that when the fruit and flowers come together with handmade pottery, magic happens. “To paint a handmade pot as opposed to something from Bed Bath & Beyond—there’s a life and consciousness in it, and it awakens that in me as well,” Higgins says. “It’s the way the light falls on these objects that are also glowing with
their own light.”

The artist is showing a new body of work in a solo show at Sage Creek Gallery this month. Higgins says there are 15 to 20 pieces that are small to medium size, with a few larger ones in the mix as well. She has paid special attention to the local, natural elements of the high desert this year. “I love when the farmer’s market comes around, and it’s filled with fruit and vegetables and flowers,” she says. “There’s just a beauty and authenticity in it all.”

Higgins says she has always been artistic. But when she went to a small Quaker college in North Carolina to pursue a fine-art degree, the programs there were more focused on abstract expressionism. She says professors urged her to become an illustrator, and “they would say I could draw better than them.” But Higgins didn’t pursue that path. She found her passion in gardening and worked the land for 20 years. Finally, she found a mentor in fellow painter Cary Ennis, who Higgins says helped launch her full-time art career by providing one-on-one support. Since the early 2000s, Higgins has been exhibiting her work on Canyon Road.

The show is a continuation of the artist’s process of exploring the world of light. Higgins says her paintings are essentially studies of light and shadow and how they interact with the objects in the scene. “Every once in a while there’s a painting that says exactly what I want it to say. It just makes my heart sing,” she says.—Mackenzie McCreary

contact information
505.988.3444
www.sagecreekgallery.com

This story was featured in the October 2016 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  October 2016 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

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