Monday, January 9, 2012

Encaustic Heaven

Yesterday was the opening reception for the Swampscott Arts Association Winter Show and I decided to exhibit several newer encaustic paintings inspired by my visit to Tuscany last spring. The judge who determined award winners is the owner of Gaga Gallery, Julie Brooks. Her gallery has had some of the most interesting, eclectic art shows and receiving the 2nd place award from her was more confirmation that I am moving in a positive direction with the encaustic medium.

"Tuscan Vineyards", 12" x 12" oil pastel and encaustic on panel

Recently I had re-worked this piece and when I added the layers of oil pastel the mood became more ethereal and softer, I was much happier with the result. The judge's comment was "Love the texture, colors, the form of vertical rows intersecting, tree-like elements, how the sky is articulated. Great composition; how it is framed is also part of the appeal".

Below you can see my other piece in the show, "Early Morning in Cortona" (top right corner) and I actually had thought that was a more interesting painting. I am on the left, talking to Mimi Andler, one of the Swampscott Arts Association members that was just telling me how she preferred my watercolor paintings more than the newer encaustic work!

Today I hung 11 paintings at Marblehead Natural Healing and we firmed up the dates for the upcoming encaustic workshops - February 5 and February 19. I have also committed to teaching an encaustic workshop at Lynn Arts on May 12. It's been over a month since I have had time to work in the studio and this morning I finally bit the bullet and ordered 2 large wood panels, each panel is 30" x 30" and my hope/plan is to work on a diptych (possibly an addition to the Water Life series). I keep hearing bigger is better, what do you think?

Photos of my paintings and the workshop space at Marblehead Natural Healing are shown below.


  1. Congrats on your award, Robin - well deserved! It was great that you could get that feedback from the judge. So often our work is is accepted/rejected/awarded without our really knowing why.

    Your paintings look great at the Healing center!

  2. That is one fabulous office space! Love the wall color and it just does remarkable things for the background for each painting. Love how you hung them too, Robin. Congratulations on your win!

  3. Deborah, it was educational hearing what goes through a juror's mind. The SAA always asks their jurors for a brief summary as to why they chose what they chose as award winning pieces.

    Sherry, the space is accommodating for more than chiropractic and medical/holistic needs. Dr. Devorah has a hanging system and lighting installed and has artists rotate their work regularly. The wall color really was a compliment to my work even though it was not the usual gallery white.

  4. That ribbon looks great and so do you. Artwork does seem to be getting bigger and bigger in all my art magazines; I just wonder who has such large wall space. I'd love to see the encaustic/oil pastel painting in person.

  5. Hi Hallie. Recently I attended a speaking engagement where a high end gallery manager shared what the gallery looks for in representing their artists and one of the things that matters to them is that the price of the work is worth the time and effort they put into promoting and covers exhibiting expenses. I think larger works cost more. Who is buying these large works? Corporations and businesses, and people who own very large walls and can afford big price tags... and I don't think there are tons of clients like that out there right now (IMHO).

  6. Wow! Congrats on your award!! Winning second place proves your willingness to make room to create in your busy schedule is paying off. I wish I had your energy, but then I can use my age as an excuse. Not all seniors have Betty Whites genes :O)

  7. Eva, I have the energy, but right now I am looking at 2 large encausticbords waiting for me to paint them and I am choosing to sit in front of my computer instead of dealing with it. I am sure at one time you had my energy too, instead you have years of wisdom and not as much energy, all good.