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Confluence of Art-Winner's Exhibit: Barbara Shafer & Mary Hermanson

September 15, 2017 | 9 AM - 4:30 PM

August 25-September 29, 2017

Open M-F 9am-4:30pm | Th 9am-7pm

Meet the Artists' Reception: Thursday, September 14, 5-7pm

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The Janet Carson Gallery is proud to present the Confluence of Art Biennial Winners' Exhibit. Best of Show was awarded to Barbara Shafer. Mary Hermanson won First Place.

Barbara Shafer

Growing up near the Hudson River, just north of New York City, I was strongly drawn as a child, to the powerful outcroppings of rock. Even as a young artist, I wanted to express in my work my response to the internal forces of these formations and their organic surfaces. My other two childhood passions were dancing and my dolls.  I believe I held on to those dolls long past the age when most girls have gone on to other interests.  These disparate interests ultimately found expression in my figurative sculpture, my major (with drawing minor) at the Rhode Island School of Design. I graduated with a BFA in Sculpture, in 1964 from RISD's European Honors Program.


The following year, I taught in a private school in New Rochelle, New York before continuing my studies at the University of Iowa. After a year in Iowa, I followed my drawing and painting Professor, Robert Knipschild, to the University of Cincinnati, where in 1967, I graduated with an MFA in Painting.


In Cincinnati my infatuation with paint as a medium solidified. And, although my paintings continued, and still do, reflect my initial interest in three dimensional forms, energies, spatial relationships, and movement, they expanded to include line, color and the application of paint.  Whatever medium I use, acrylic, watercolor, charcoal, pen and ink, my work mimics my early handling of clay.  I build layer upon layer upon layer, searching for form and compositional relationships, proportions, the edge, and the emotional character of the subject.  


The show that I am presenting is a retrospective of my work.  It includes my figure/ dancer paintings, as well as paintings that I call "plant forms."  The dancer paintings are the result of my interest in the human figure.  Local dancers and visiting performers are the subject of this work.   In some, the figure's mood is introspective, in others, the movement and relationships of one body to one another or to the space of the canvas takes precedence.  The dried plant forms are handled more spontaneously.  The result is a more abstract and loosely painted work.  My overriding concerns remain in both subjects, to be the formal issues that have been facing artists throughout history.


Some artists have influenced me more than others.  Those of note would be; Thomas Eakins, Wilhelm Lembruck, Francisco Goya, Lucien Freud, Giacomo Manzu, Alberto Giacometti, Pieter Bruegel, Etruscan and certain Medieval sculptures and the Abstract Expressionists.


Mary Hermanson

When I discovered the kaleidoscope quilt design technique of making fiber art, all of the elements of my career as an art educator and my passion for quilting came together. My goal is to use the elements and principles of design, combined with the symmetry of kaleidoscopic design and techniques and materials of traditional quilting to create a complex and exciting visual image.

My art comes alive through the use of a fabric palate to create new images. These images reflect my love for bright colors and my appreciation for all the beautiful fabrics that enhance my palette. My talent to sew and my attention for details make these fiber art pieces truly an expression of my art ability and my passion for the fine arts.

Each time I begin to create a kaleidoscopic design, there are elements of surprise, change and chance as to where the fabric will lead me to accomplish the desired visual image.

I have a Bachelor's degree in Art Education, UW Stout: Master's degree in Professional Development, UW LaCrosse. I taught a total of 40 years as an art educator.

Shows that I have participated in: Valley Art Association Art Faire, Annual Spring Art Show and Valley Art Association Show at the Heyde Center for the Arts, Chippewa Falls, WI; Ashley for the Arts, Arcadia, WI: Holiday Art Fair, Fabulous Florals and Fine Art, and the Confluence of Art Biennial at the Janet Carson Gallery; Arts West 37, LE Phillips Memorial Public Library, Eau Claire, WI and the Banbury Art Crawl, Eau Claire, WI.

Awards that I have receiver; Honorable Mention, Annual Spring Art Show; "Guest of Honor" cash award, Ashley for the Arts, Best Interpretation, Fabulous Florals and Fine Arts, and First Place at the Confluence of Art Biennial. 


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