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thoughts about creativity and  art:   live your life as your work of art.

Find Hope About Seeking Refuge In The World

©beth vendryes williamsIMG_0009Sep 24 2018.jpg

I am up early writing again, because I had thoughts spilling out of my head. I am recovering from installing the culmination of creating the art pieces for this freshly installed exhibit.

As I tap out these words, I am sipping a tall glass of water with fresh lime and lemon slices. Relaxing,

The exhibit that “we” opened on Sunday at the Shelter Rock Gallery of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation is awesome!

Standing in the middle of my marks made on paper and canvas I am engaged in conversation and thoughts with the viewers. It is both humbling and energizing!

I say we because it is so true! There is a myth out there about the solitary artist, but I could not have done this without the help of my team of supportive artists, collectors, and friends, Matt & Ashley, for their tech & marketing guidance,Ann Balderston-Glynn, videographer. I also thank my three wonderful sons who edit, advise and keep me laughing, and of course, my very dear husband, Allen who has makes it his mission to help me get the work out there!

You will want to see the whole exhibit, so call 516-627-6560 or 516-472-2933 to find out when the room is available n the day you want to go. It is occasionally used for events. If you want to see what is there, here is the link!

Think. What Happened When Your Ancestors Sought Refuge?

 
 We are all in this together (detail of panel 1) of triptych)        oil painting     beth vendryes williams

We are all in this together (detail of panel 1) of triptych)        oil painting     beth vendryes williams

 

Enjoy the last days of summer!

For me, I am back to “seeking refuge”! Yes, I keep returning to this theme because we all need to find our refuge in this world. Sometimes it is walking and meditating. Also, for me it is in making art!

I became aware of this way of seeking refuge because of my family stories...

 
The oldest of seven children, I grew up with our parents loving the fact that we were part Jamaican, English, French, and Sicilian. I knew I was related to Michael Manley, former president of Jamaica, through a common great grandmother. My Dad and his parents emigrated from Kingston, Jamaica to the United States.  Eventually we discovered and met our French cousins, who are descendants of the Vendryes relatives who decided to remain in France seven generations ago.

 Both of my Mom’s parents bravely emigrated, separately, from Sicily when they were 17 and 25 yeas old. They first met in Sicily and then got married in Little Italy,  NYC. 

We all keep in touch!

Through my  family origins, the borders of my world expanded ...

...so that I always perceived being part of a much bigger world than the United States. According to a DNA testing I am 5% West African, a fact that is also supported by family lore and cousins.  I thrive in the possibilities of communicating and connecting with people from all different parts of the world..

When I read and see people  trying to immigrate to the United States, I am happy for them, because without that, I know I would not be here. In the USA there is an opportunity to be free and to have a voice and a vote in who represents us. It is far from perfect, but it gives us the possibility of living in a government that protects the individual’s rights to freedom. 

Immigrants must be vetted, of course. They also must be treated with compassion. For we are all related to one another in some way. We are all human beings. We are all, body and spirit, living in this world, together.

I was inspired to explore some of that innate knowledge by creating a visual story. That has been a journey in itself., for me. Yes, That is my Grandpa Henry and my Dad and his brother on either side, shortly after they emigrated from Jamaica.

I would love to hear your story! Tell me in your comment or instagram!

Check out the events link to make sure you get to my solo exhibit  and reception on Sunday, September 23rd. Currently, Fresh fruit & vegetable watercolors ar exhibiting at Autentico Restaurant. Come on in and have a look and have an espresso or coffee!
 

 

Four blank canvases evoke the heart to respond.

 seeking refuge/ process sketches         watercolor & ink/ rag paper          beth vendryes williams

seeking refuge/ process sketches         watercolor & ink/ rag paper          beth vendryes williams

Where do I begin?

 

The sun gently awakens me this morning as I begin my work in earnest on compiling my solo exhibit! There will be an opening reception on September 23, 2018. The show will be a collection of work done in recent years. In my newest work I have chosen to deepen my exploration of the refuge theme and am using multiple mediums in the development of this series.

 

I began by looking at four blank canvases I have in my studio. My head, heart, and hands were in agreement.

I realized I needed to work larger than before and change the medium. I decided to use oil paint for its gestural possibilities, rich depth of color and sensuous qualities.

 

Seeking Refuge is what I am calling the exhibit, and it operates on a couple of levels.

The current work underway references the 65 million people worldwide fleeing their homes in the world today, trying to find a place where they can live safely.

All of my art references the personal refuge that the process of creating brings to me.

 

I just want to begin to share my process with you, as I struggle through the daily work of pulling the ideas and images together. It is soul searching and sometimes difficult to see the next step.

 

I find your support invaluable. Walk with me if you dare, and follow my progress as the series takes form.

 
 
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opportunities for quiet time of reflection, lurk in the intersections of your day

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Have you ever felt the world rushing around you...

so quickly that there is barely have time to stop and breathe and have a moment of time with your thoughts and feelings? Do you want to look at life by placing events and media notifications in perspective as you review your unique inner voice?

That is what motivated me

as I began my search for time-tested, effective ways of encouraging personal quietness as a daily practice. And yes, yoga and meditation are traditions that create space for inner quiet. I have long noticed the natural pauses that occur at specific intervals of the day, and it made me think of an ancient practice in the church, based on hours of the day. The liturgy of the hours is still practiced daily, by many priests as well as people who meditate. From my contemporary perspective, I am making art that identifies activities and appropriate moments in the day that could remind me (and you!) to pause and leave room for inner reflection.

To convey a deeper understanding of this inner space,

 I am working with elements of color shape, form and perspective to communicate the reflective moments. This process has naturally developed into a combination of watercolor, collage with both remnants from recycled paper and clothing. The series has become a layered work, which coincidentally represents the layers of information that bombard us throughout the day.!  I am very excited to share these pieces with you!

You may See this new work at Autentico Restaurant, in two weeks!  If you haven’t done so already, subscribe, so I can send you an invitation to the artsy and delicious opening at Autentico!

 

Drive thru rambling days of summer with inner focus

Did you ever look forward to a relaxing summer

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and all of a sudden, your days gathered speed, summer had ended and the chill air of autumn was at your door? Well, it just happened to me

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Exhibiting  at New York Studio School, was so awesome
 and the chosen piece was a solar plate print I made while at a workshop with Dan Welden ,who offered to work with me, as master printer on a series of pieces.

The Paddle 8 auction also features this print, through tomorrow
 as a result of the NYSS exhibit. In fact there are only two days left to place a bid. My exhibited print , called "rushing waters", (#3607.270440.1110044  for the auction)., is on through tomorrow, Friday, August 25th, and you may be lucky enough to start the bidding!

Working with Dan Welden was inspiring and productive! 
I now have three new solar prints in http://www.bethvendryeswilliams.com/bvw-blog/the-jubilant-audacity-of-sun-water water series. Clouds have been inspiring me for years but in the past six months and I have been entranced by these weightless , constantly changing sky sculptures!  

Traveling a lot to the Niagara Falls area this summer
because of a wedding and adopting a little puppy, we have been. Thus I have naturally taken more photos and sketches of clouds and water. 

featured in Professional Artist Magazine October November Issue!
I just got a message from an artist friend, excitedly congratulating me for being one of the featured artists in an article about how ambition  can affect an artist and her work. I am so excited to share this with you! The featured watercolor  is owned by one of my collectors and the other is a drawing in my personal inventory collection!

A heartfelt thank you to all of you, my dear supporters, 
who answered my request for images of water, as I pursue my quest to work with water imagery as vapor (clouds and fog), liquid (falling, waves and still ) and solid.

What was an awesome moment of growth and or joy, in your summer? Your sharing helps to spark creative ideas for both of us!

I wonder what autumn will bring? 

Transform hope into substance. Seize the day!

 rushing waters &nbsp; 30" x 22" solarplate print &nbsp;is featured in NYSS exhibit and in the Paddle 8 auction!

rushing waters   30" x 22" solarplate print  is featured in NYSS exhibit and in the Paddle 8 auction!

  Sometimes, all it takes is being persistent and pushing forward with your passion.

Believe in yourself and go forward, one step at a time, embracing the process! I am sharing this with you, my friend, because it happens to me.I made a decision this spring, to take definitive, concrete actions on opportunities to share my art!

 If not now, when?

So I decided to enter a juried Alumni show at New York Studio School... and got accepted. The opening reception happened on July 27th, revealing an astounding amount of outstanding and earnest work. The artists, teachers and art lovers were heard in animated conversations, discussing work with each other and with interested bystanders. The three rooms were crowded and warm, but energetic and lively!

If you can go to the NYSS to see the exhibit, you will see diversity and energy that is rare. The work is up until August 27th.

 Oh, and if you would like to participate in the auction,

many works will be featured on Paddle 8, the international auction house, beginning on August 11th. Thirty percent of the final bid price will go to support NYSS! 

Your time will be well spent, and you just might discover some work you never imagined before!

 Seize the day, bringing that energy to your life and your goals.  whatever they may be.

And while you are seizing the day, subscribe to my blog to let me know of your creative ideas. Keep up with my progress as I put one foot in front of the other and continue to strive.We can support each other in this.

Impact Of The Whitney Biennial Is The Truths It Reveals

 Artist Coleen Smith

Artist Coleen Smith

Have you had trouble prying your eyes from the latest tweet or news report, lately?

Imagine rooms full of sculptures made from found objects. Colorful, boisterous paintings. Large. Each body of work was dealing with recent worldwide political issues, refugees, oppressive governments. Some work played with the idea that in some ways we are oblivious to the changes going on around us.  I read about how the curators were chosen. As it was their first-time biennial experience and I love how they sifted through 100’s of artists to get to the 63 artist’s and collectives gathered together on the 5th and 6th floors of the museum. Additional work is placed in surprising places throughout the building.  

It is not like going to a  “regular” art museum or art fair. It is, at first, more like a discovery of how, this year, artists have been affected by the socio-political climate, and injustice.  After investigating some of the work, I was reminded of how much the current state of the world has sharpened my focus.

So do go there. 
See and walk amongst this curated world in which artists have responded to, and found respite in drawing and painting their response to the world of the past year. Eventually, you will find the “forest”, when you are halfway through. This exhibit does give me hope. 

caveat:  I did not participate in the virtual reality  exhibit. Topic: violence.