As far back as I can remember I was drawing; with a stick in the dirt, my finger in the dust on the windowsill,or a nubby pencil.
I started life in a traditional 1950’s setting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania But life swung a curve when my father died when I was nine years old. My mother and I moved to Greenwich Village in the sixties. New York City was jumping with creative energy. Progressive feelings about politics and prejudice, war and peace were expressed in loud voices,with joined hands and sung on every corner.
Individual expression was celebrated. It was particularly enticing at the regular Washington Square Park outdoor art show. A family friend and professional painter, Manus Lichtenberg inspired me. I began taking Pels art classes every Saturday in the historic Ansonia Hotel on the upper West side. I studied classical masters at the Metropolitan Museum, modern masters at the Guggenheim and Museum of Modern Art and contemporary art at the Whitney. As I matured as an artist I was drawn to the hundreds of art galleries and small exhibitions in Chelsea and all over Manhattan.I learned to love and appreciate an extensive diversity of talent.
After graduating from Art and Design school in commercial art and attending the School of Visual Art for fabric design and NYU's New School for book illustration with Uri Shulevitz I embarked on a commercial art career working with established illustrator,Phillip Fox in Gramercy Park
.I was irretrievably drawn to California in the seventies where I quickly met, Dan Seals,the singer songwriter, through a friend of mine from New York. Time flew by, love grew and we married in the sweltering heat in the summer of 1975 in the San Fernando Valley.
My art was put on the back burner while Danny and I nurtured our blended family of his two little boys and our baby daughter. Motherhood inspired a deep need in me to discover progressive learning environments for young children. The Montessori method most complemented my belief system as well as my love of natural beauty . When the family moved to Del Mar, California my education continued at the University of California San Diego ultimately obtaining my American Montessori Society teacher certification. Guiding little ones, continuing my education, raising a family and traveling extensively filled the next decade. At which time our family ended up settling in Middle Tennessee.
After earning a B.A. degree in 1983 from Vermont College of Norwich University, I received a grant to open the Montessori Schoolhouse in Hendersonville, Tennessee, a suburb of Nashville. Establishing the school fulfilled my dream of merging creativity holistically within the Montessori environment.
When our youngest son was born in January of 1987, I chose to be an at home mom working freelance art projects and serving on various community, art, school and ecumenical boards.
When he started school, I realized I had postponed a vital part of my self-realization long enough. The need to develop my artistic response to the world seriously began. Studying advanced techniques with exemplary mentors including Charles Brindley, I increased my knowledge and the desire to focus more attention on oil painting in addition to water color, graphite and pen and ink drawing.
My creative process includes trusting an intuitive pulse and reflection which brings depth to each piece.. The venues for my art are diverse. I have shown in a multitude of private and public ,solo, group and juried shows in the South. I have had exhibitions at the National Institutes of Health Main Gallery and the Ratner Museum in Bethesda, Maryland, Cumberland University’s Adams Gallery in Lebanon, Tennessee, Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, the Renaissance Center in Dickson, Tennessee, private invitational exhibit in Houston Texas and many small cultural venues. My work is currently in private collections and public spaces.
In 2009 life challenges opened up a new world of expression addressing abstracted subjects in an abstract manner adding to my artistic repertoire. During 2010 I lived in Chengdu, China, where I taught, painted and discovered a new world of influence. In March 2011 Morro Bay, California beckoned for a six month sojourn by the sea before I returned to middle Tennessee to paint what inspiration brings.
My studio is in Hendersonville, Tennessee.
ACROSS AKKA BAY
oil on canvas 20 X 10
BLOOMING DESERT watercolor
pen and ink on paper 7 X 5
HOPE oil paint on canvas
20 X 16