Arts Depot, April 8-May 10
This story was featured in the April 2016 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art April 2016 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.
In a preview from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, April 8, art lovers get their first peek at the more than 150 artworks in the fifth annual Women Painters of the Southeast Juried Members’ Exhibition and Sale at the Arts Depot in Abingdon, VA. The show officially opens on Saturday, April 9, with an artists’ reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Growing rapidly since its beginning in 2011, the Women Painters of the Southeast currently comprises over 400 juried female members who live and paint in the southeastern United States. More than 110 members have been juried into this year’s show and bring one or two works each. Here we introduce you to a few of the participating artists.
Founding member Eileen Corse is known for works featuring gently abstracted images of the figure around water: Bathing-suited figures diving into pools, children suspended or bobbing or cannonballing into the blue, and sunbathers on the shoreline populate her oeuvre. Corse makes her home in Florida and also paints landscapes and florals.
Believing in the importance of appreciating the beauty of “simple and ordinary natural objects that surround us on a daily basis,” one of Florida painter Mary Garrish’s goals is to share her heightened awareness and awe of our world through emotive landscapes. Her canvases capture ominous cloud formations over roiling seas, flaming sunsets through sultry swamps, as well as far-flung scenes like the bucolic, sun-drenched Tuscan hills.
Karen Ann Hitt studied illustration at Parsons School of Design in New York. Primarily an oil painter, she renders the figure and the landscape in impressionistic brushwork and hopes to capture “influential daily moments” and to “reflect light, life, land, and expressions as genuinely experienced.” She makes her home in Venice, FL.
Sandy W. Browning began painting when she was a teenager, a hobby her father encouraged by purchasing good-quality art materials for her. After a career as a flight attendant, in 2003 Browning turned her focus to her artwork once again. Her loose impressionistic canvases feature floral still lifes, the farms and marinas of the rural South, and her beloved vintage wooden boats.
Making her home outside of Charlotte, NC, Ann Watcher renders the figure and the southern landscape with contemporary images in which she contrasts areas of vibrant hues and more subdued, neutral colors. “I am inspired to paint the people around me,” she says. “Their everyday actions provide so much material to develop
onto the canvas.” —Laura Rintala
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