News

Please join us for a free Gallery Talk on Monday, February 9 at 6 pm. 

Matt Korbelac, president of the Digital Photography Club of Annapolis will introduce the winners of the Digital Visions: Annual Juried Show of the Digital Photography Club of Annapolis in the Chaney Gallery. The winners will discuss their piece, addressing why they chose to take it and how they addressed problems in doing so. Printing on various papers and other materials and framing choices will also be discussed. Speakers will include James Walker speaking for himself and Annette Uroskie, Chris Edwards and Lynann Rudert. 

Immediately following the talk in the Chaney Gallery, head up to the third floor for a discussion in the Balcony Gallery by Vince Lupo about his photographs. Vince says of his work, “These photos are impressions of where I've been, what I've seen and the feelings these encounters have evoked.  Call them my visual "curricula vitae," or at least a small sliver of them.”

Interview conducted by Gallery Director, Sigrid Trumpy.

Where would you like to start?

I will start with  a description of my art materials. I am a painter and recently, it's been almost 10 years , I became a watercolorist. So my tools that I use are paint, either oil or watercolor and brushes; but I found that I like to use the palette knife. I learned to use the palette knife with oil and then I learned how to use it with watercolors.

How do you use a palette knife with watercolors?

I was taught that you can mix gesso with watercolor and you spread it just like oil paints. It has a very slick consistency so that you can use it with a palette knife.

Why do you prefer watercolor to oil or acrylic?

I was quite surprised that I would enjoy it.  I took watercolor as a student and I hated it. It always became muddy & just was a mess. Over the years I found it was my impatience with the medium  that made it so hard to be successful. Years later I have now attempted watercolor, I have a different attitude on life and painting now. I have found with watercolor I'm able to be very expressive about what I am painting. I will usually paint flowers but also enjoy painting landscapes.

What is your earliest memory of art?

I remember when I was in second grade my teacher came to me and asked me to be part of the mural painting that they were doing for the school. It was all grades and I felt really special that I was chosen to be part of this special project.

Obviously that was a very pleasurable experience for you as a child. Did you continue to create throughout your elementary and high school years?

I was always painting or sketching. I was an only child and spent a lot of time with adults so in that time I always chose to draw.  I always took art classes through elementary, junior high and high school and then decided to continue and major in art in college.

So you've been making art almost your whole life. Who is your muse and why?

 I actually found my muse right here in Maryland Hall. . I had a demanding job and painting in oils consumed too much time.  I decided to take a watercolor class and change my direction. I knew Erika Walsh from where I worked in the art gallery and I admired her work. I met her while she was still living in Germany and came to deliver work and always enjoyed seeing what was in that portfolio she carried. She opened a new world to me.  I find her a total inspiration, for her strength and her teaching ability to appreciate watercolor. As I said I had a very dissatisfying attitude towards watercolor but Erika changed that totally and now I find watercolor is what I prefer to create with.  Through Erika I learned not to obsess with the painting, but paint loose and fast. Just let the painting develop.  As my muse one of her favorite phrases comes to me “it's just a sheet of paper”.

What is your ideal creative activity?

I have enjoyed and have had the opportunity to paint en plein air with my artist friends. I've traveled to France and many places in the US and Mexico.  I find it inspiring to paint with other artists and painting plein air is always better than painting from a photograph. I have been blessed that I have painted in Giverny with the gardeners. I applied to paint on the day that only artists are allowed to paint in the garden and spent the whole day with two other artist friends. It was like Monet was there with me.

The other opportunity I had recently was that I went to Abiquiu, New Mexico to see the George O'Keeffe home and her art. There was a seminar coming up for a limit of six people where we could paint at her home.

What did the seminar include?

We were asked if we preferred to paint in the morning or afternoon. Morning painting consisted of getting up and being at the pick-up spot ready to go at 6:30 am. I knew that I could do that. I wanted to be up and out at her home. We were not actually allowed to paint in the house or the courtyard where her famous door painting was done, but we painted on the grounds. It was not a class but just an opportunity for you to paint and envision and be there and see what she painted. The class ended with lunch.

Also another amenity to this class was  we went into her bomb shelter that is not part of the tour. She was an amazing woman. She had planned a total bomb shelter for her staff and her to be able to live if there was ever anything you need to be protected from. I do not regret painting early in the morning because the afternoon class was all thunderstorms which are so typical of that area.  I had talked to the curator earlier and he recommended painting in the morning and he was right.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am looking forward to having a show here in Maryland Hall in September. I have to go through the decision process of what to paint.  I know t's going to be a watercolor exhibit.  It will be with nature because flowers and landscapes are what I love to paint and I have to somehow combine my love for abstract painting.

L-R: Infiniti, Pansy Orchid, Sea Nettles.

 

For more information about Merla, visit her Artist-in-Residence profile

This is part of an ongoing monthly series featuring a Maryland Hall Artist-in-Residence (AIR). Check Maryland Hall's website every Monday for a new post. Each month we will feature a different AIR. Click here to visit the Maryland Hall AIR page.

 

Maryland Hall Artist-in-Residence Merla Tootle takes you on a tour of her studio in Studio 305.

Studio 305 divides into 3 studios. Enter the main door  and  come around to the 2nd entry  to the far left and you will be in my studio.  The wall holds a small gallery of my paintings.   Next you will see a still life set up and a tabouret with oil brushes and supplies. 

 

1) My art altar displays my plants and décor.  It is focus in my studio. I have a strong  Asian influence in my art. 2) The bookcase holds a variety of supplies;  brushes, different paints, oils to pastel.  Necessary items are mediums, cleaners, art books and periodicals.

 

 

On the wall next to shelves hangs a large oil painting from college, a study in color planes .  I have my carry-on suit case available ; always ready  to travel to paint to my next plein air destination. Adjacent is  hand painted watercolor chart.  Someday I will frame the chart as a work of art.  

 

My watercolor table set up, brushes and water... the dark handled  brush on the paper is irreplaceable.  It is a handmade squirrel brush from a craftsman, “The Brushman,” who is  no longer making brushes.

 

The last wall is all windows….I use part of the ledge to hold older oils that  I painted while studying with John Ebersberger.    I learned how to see color and the importance of light how it defines shape.   Light is the narrator of a painting.

 

1) A larger view looking out my window wall.   These windows are my source of wonderful  light and I have a view of MD Hall’s new refurbished windows. 2) My window sill serves as an extra shelf. Vincent Van Gogh is one my favorite painters and Picasso is always lurking in the background as my abstract influence. 3) “Namaste” My wooden manikin in the foreground of  my impressionist  landscape painting.  It will appear it various places as my “elf on the shelf”

 

Sitting at my work table for water colors, but I never paint sitting down.   You need to put your whole body into a painting.

 

Looking at my wall of unfinished paintings, statements of color, and calligraphy words to inspire.

 

1) Working on oil painting from still life using the brush for small detail. 2) At the easel with the palette knife.

 

Travel Sketch book with paints, brush  and carrier.   With these items  I have journaled my travels for  the last few years.  Up the coast of California, from San Diego to San Francisco. Also Yosemite,  further on to Canada and  Alaska. On the East coast, locally, and  north to Rhode Island, Cape Cod and Maine.

 

The method used is gesso and a pallete  knife on canvas. The winter scene totally painted with the knife.  The  other; flowers are partially  painted  with brush and knife. This can be  joy  for a watercolorist; the canvas can be mounted and sprayed and framed without a mat or  glass.  

 

 

For more information about Merla, visit her Artist-in-Residence profile

This is part of an ongoing monthly series featuring a Maryland Hall Artist-in-Residence (AIR). Check Maryland Hall's website every Monday for a new post. Each month we will feature a different AIR. Click here to visit the Maryland Hall AIR page.

Maryland Hall presents an evening of traditional and contemporary folk music at a performance titled “Birds of a Feather” featuring Magpie and Shenandoah Run on Saturday, March 14 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $26 for Non-Members and $21 for Maryland Hall members. Noted folk music radio host Mary Cliff will be the emcee for the evening. Click here to purchase tickets.

The concert will feature a range of folk music from classic hits by Pete Seeger, Tom Paxton and Joan Baez and music inspired by the Civil War, the civil rights movement and the environment. The show’s unique format allows the groups to perform separately throughout the night and then come together at the end for a special performance.

Since 1973, Magpie, the NY-based duo of Terry Leonino and Greg Artzner, have brought their unique sound and remarkable versatility to diverse audiences. They perform traditional songs, vintage blues, swing and country as well as folk classics and stirring original compositions. With two strong voices in harmony and superb instrumental arrangements on guitars, mandolin, harmonica, dulcimer and concertina, their sound is powerful and moving. Award-winning recording artists, songwriters, musical historians, and social activists, Magpie always promise a presentation that is highly entertaining as well as provocative and deeply moving. Joining Magpie for the night is bass player Ralph Gordon.

Regional favorite, Shenandoah Run is a folk group made up of nine members, hand-picked for his or her individual musicality, vocal and instrumental talent, and a strong desire to keep folk music alive and fresh. Their repertoire features the songs and sounds of American folk, country, and bluegrass music, with the occasional infusion of songs from other lands. Their blend of vintage and contemporary folk music, treated with lush harmonies and skillful instrumental backing, defines their signature recognizable sound. With their many years of collective performance experience, they produce arrangements that are fresh, varied, and unique, and deliver them in a manner that delights audiences of all ages. Their relaxed and informal presentation quickly establishes a rapport with the audience and encourages them to sing along.

Maryland Hall invites all 2D abstract artists to apply for the ALL ABSTRACT exhibition that will be on display from May 13 - July 11. Artworks limited only by your imagination. Explore color, movement, form and other intangibles that are not dependent on a recognizable subject.

Works up to 44” are eligible for this exhibit where one artwork will be displayed by each artist and can be a painting, drawing, print or collage. No sculpture or photography. Works on paper must be framed and ready for hanging. All works must have hanging wires. No saw tooth hangers will be allowed. Delivery of artworks is Monday, May 11 from 10-5. Works will be exhibited from May 13 – July 11 on Maryland Hall's 2nd floor hallway panels. There will be an opening reception on Thursday, May 14 from 5:30 - 7 pm. Please note, this is not a juried exhibit. 

Submit one image with the following information to strumpy@mdhallarts.org. Please include name, address, email, phone number, title of artwork, size, medium or technique, price or NFS.  The last day to apply is April 15. 

Image: Cassandra Kabler, Summer News, 2010, 31 x 22.5, watercolor. 

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