Events in the news often motivate me to respond through art but recently, places that I've painted and celebrated are now a shell of what they once were, and face a long, slow recovery process thanks to Mother Nature and hurricane Irma while more storms are swirling into formation. I've also lived in Florida and understand the fragility of living in paradise. My paintings are all from Puerto Rico which was spared extensive damage from Irma, but the new storms brewing may not skirt the island next time.
History is so important and learning lessons to avoid repeating terrible decisions of the past is hopefully what mankind does. Well a book about the life of Rollins Edwards is now a reality and for sale at Amazon. Read it, learn from it and spread the word.
I was so moved reading his story in Azalea magazine a few years ago that I painted his image. Twice. It was hard to reconcile what I was reading about him during WWll and how he looks today. That is the amazing part of his story. What was done to him by the US Army was disgraceful yet he didn't let that determine his life. What an amazing soul.
Gathering Spirits by Karyn Healey & Susan Trott
A selection of their paintings done on location in the church yard and beyond will be on display at Gage Hall. The Unitarian Churchyard, part of the Gateway Walk, is somewhat off the beaten path. Cool and quiet except for the occasional tourist it is known for its profusion of flowers, vines and trees that meander in and out of beautiful statuary along secret pathways. No wonder artists find it irresistible.
Susan Trott and Karyn Healey are both local artists. Trott attended the art school at Virginia Commonwealth University and Winthrop College. See more of her work at the Charleston Artist Guild Gallery and the Charleston Artist Collective in Mt. Pleasant. Healey graduated from Iowa State University and her work is also on display at the Charleston Artist Guild Gallery.
The painting on the right is my mom, Beth Ann, at about the age of four posing for a Christmas card photo from the Philippines in 1941 where her father, Stanley Holmes, had just been stationed. Soon after this photo was taken the Japanese invaded and she and her mother returned to Connecticut and never saw her father again. They lived with family for over three years before they learned his fate at the end of the war. It must have been a life of uncertainty, but she only described it as a time when she was surrounded by love. Many years later after attending college, graduate school, and raising a family, she learned of her father's bravery and strength during those three years. The apple didn't fall far from the tree.
Preparations continue for my solo show, Women's Work, which opens in May and the timing could not be better. Almost daily I come across references of women in leadership roles or women who are trail blazers. Women who are creative and focused. Women who persist. Truly energizing and exactly what I want to celebrate with my show.
I was intrigued to see an article in TIME Magazine entitled "The Female Gaze" which marks women's History Month. "It's never been more critical for us to have a woman's visual perspective," explains Kira Pollack, TIME'S director of photography. I could not agree more! Here's a link to the online story about female photographers.
And photographs of the female gaze will also be part of my show in the form of selfies. Here's a peek.
Karyn Healey is an oil painter in the lowcountry of South Carolina working on figurative, landscape, and architectural paintings in a variety of styles.