A Peak Inside Three Artists' Studios | ArtJabber


A Peak Inside Three Artists’ Studios

Artist Annie Murphy-Robinson with "Night Prowler," charcoal on paper, 9/22/13.
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Do white men rule the art world?  Walter Robinson recently posed that question in the online magazine Artspace (9/18/13).  My response to Robinson’s question:  In my world, on a day like Sunday, September 22, in Carmichael, CA, the answer is NO.  It was the second day, of the second weekend of the Capital Artists’ Studio Tour (CAST) and women definitely ruled.

CAST, an annual event in the Sacramento region, offers a unique opportunity for artists and the viewing public.  The four-day extravaganza casts (pardon the pun) a wide net where artists open their private studios for free tours, art demonstrations and sales.  Spread over two weekends, and covering eight distinct Sacramento neighborhoods, the tour has grown in popularity.  Rising from a humble beginning in 2006 with less than ten women artists and their studios, the 2013 tour featured nearly 140 local artists, both men and women.  The tour is coordinated by the Center for Contemporary Art Sacramento (CCAS).

 I decided to go easy on my carbon footprint, focusing on my neighborhood of Carmichael where I toured three artists’ studios included in the second weekend of the tour.  While these three artists’ practices are quite distinct from one another, there was one definite link tying them together: all three of the Carmichael artists are women.  Aha! They included: Annie Murphy-Robinson; Michelle Andres; and Dianne Van de Carr. 

Every one of these women artists is strong, confident, and extremely talented.  So Walter Robinson, there is your answer.

The walls in Murphy-Robinson’s studio, in a converted garage, were lined with nearly a dozen charcoal and pastel works on paper.  The mostly black and white images focus on her children. The viewer is reminded of the work of photographer Sally Mann, one of Murphy-Robinson’s influences.  In an artist’s statement Murphy-Robinson wrote, “My art is a diary of sorts, quasi self-portraits that reference my childhood experiences, good and bad.” 

The image below, “Night Prowler,” referencing the huntress Diana, is Murphy-Robinson’s newest work and will be one of three pieces she’ll show at Miami’s SCOPE Art Fair in December. 

Artist Annie Murphy-Robinson with "Night Prowler," charcoal on paper, 9/22/13.

Artist Annie Murphy-Robinson with “Night Prowler,” charcoal on paper, 9/22/13.

My second stop on the tour was the studio of Michelle Andres.  She describes herself as a coach, writer, artist and teacher.  Andres works in a bright airy studio, filled with natural sunlight and white walls, where she produces abstract mosaics and mixed media works that fuse collage, poetry and metal leafing.  One large colorful canvas, a mixed media piece titled “New Beginnings,” immediately caught my eye as it almost exploded out of the white washed walled where it is mounted.  

Phil Cunningham, President, CCAS, and artist Michelle Andres in front of her work "New Beginnings," mixed media.

Phil Cunningham, President, CCAS, and artist Michelle Andres in front of her work “New Beginnings,” mixed media, 9/22/13.

 

The studio of artist Dianne Van de Carr was my final stop on the CAST tour.  Van de Carr works with fused glass and pottery to create a wide variety of decorative pieces: from jewelry, to plates, to mobiles.  

Before entering Van de Carr’s studio, visitors must first stroll past her eclectic garden where old bowling balls apparently come to live out their final days.   She says she is especially attracted to orbs and often paints the balls before planting them in her garden. 

Artist Dianne Van de Carr, with a selection of her glass fusion pieces.

Artist Dianne Van de Carr, with a selection of her glass fusion pieces, 9/22/13.

 

 

 

 

 

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One Response

  1. Thank you for the nice write up. I loved participating in the tour and meeting so many new people. I’m so glad you enjoyed the garden and my art.

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