Parkland College > Fine & Applied Arts > Giertz Gallery > Past Exhibits >Watermedia/Diversity: State of the Art 1999

Image of Robert Lee Mejer's art piece "Womb"
Catherine Anderson, Song of the Earth

Roger L. Crossgrove, Waldoboro Fracture VII-99, image
Carol Hammett, House on Wheels

Image of Patricia Harringtor's Garden Shadows image
Patricia harringtor, Garden Shadows

Image of Kathleen Jardine's Barbizon Millennium
Kathleen Jardine, Barbizon Millennium

Watermedia/Diversity: State of the Art 1999

  • Curated by Glen Bradshaw
  • February 18 - March 26, 1999

The "State of the Art National Biennial Watercolor Invitational" was held February 18 through March 26. University of Illinois Professor Emeritus Glenn Bradshaw brought together the work of twenty artists, handpicked for their diverse selection of styles and subject matter, and recognized as masters in the field of watermedia.

Participating artists included: Catherine Anderson, Edward Betts, Gerald Brommer, Keith Crown, Janet Fish, Carol Hammett, Patricia Harrington, Kathleen Jardine, Serge Hollerbach, William Lawrence, Anne A.R. Massie, DeLoss McGraw, Dean Mitchell, Carole Pickle, Patricia Reynolds, Thomas Sgouros, Pat San Soucie, Carl C. Sublett, and Mary Wilbanks. This exhibit focused on watermedia paintings, but as Prof. Bradshaw explained in his curator's statement: "Choosing to limit the view by medium narrows the field some but technically and ideologically there is still great diversity." Although Bradshaw selected the artists, the actual work submitted for the exhibit was left to each individual.

Watermedia is any waterborne paint, such as transparent watercolor, tempera, or gouache that is applied to paper or a paper-like material. Multiple Works done with this media can vary greatly in appearance, from fluid transparent watercolors to tightly controlled layers of thin washes. As in any medium, being a meaningful watermedia artist requires more than skill. The artists selected for this exhibition are known for their individuality and personal expression. Bradshaw stressed that it is not the "how" in a painting that should be emphasized but the meaning and feelings that are most important. Pieces in this exhibit were inspired by literature, locations, and childhood memories and incorporated a range of artistic genres which included including abstraction, portraiture, and narrative.

Landscapes and still-lifes seem to serve as a traditional subject for watercolorists, but it was exciting to contrast the many artists' approaches to these and other inspirations. Keith Crown's piece, "The Inside Out - Near Taos, NM" was a playful interpretation of the desert, using energetic strokes and geometric shapes. Yet Catherine Anderson's "Song of the Earth" gave an ethereal, but realistic depiction of the prairie through a more controlled style of layers in the watercolor. Anne Adams Robertson Massie's "Passeggiata - Perugia II" depicted a colorful crowd in Italy and invited the viewer to walk into its photo-like image with long diagonals and mirage of motion. Gallery viewers were mesmerized by Kathleen Jardin's "Barbison Millennium" a painting inspired by the art of the Dutch Baroque, and filled with both Eastern and Western symbolism. Other artists, like Pat San Soucie and Mary Wilbanks, exhibited pieces that were abstract reflections of personal ideas and images.

This exhibit was a testimony to the wealth and variety of watercolor artistry. It was meaningful to have such a talented group of watermedia artists at the Parkland Art Gallery. We thank Mr. Bradshaw for putting together such a beautiful show for the gallery.

This exhibit is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.





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