Daddy's Christmas Angel

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy New Year and Thinking Big Art

Happy New Year, All! On New Year's Eve, I was fascinated reading the television crawlers featuring tweets from viewers. Many of them commented on watching the new year come in with the "love of my life".

I thought, "Isn't that wonderful? Isn't that the reason authors write a romance novel? How nice to be with the "love of my life" on the first day of the new year.

Happy wishes, happy days for the year 2018. Hoping you have good memories from 2017 and that the new year will meet your expectations and fulfill your hopes and dreams.


"Amy Sleeping" oil on canvas ©Mary Montague Sikes
   Recently, I received a notice for an art show, "Think Big" that will be a featured event at Art Speaks on the Bay in Mathews in the spring. Thinking big excites me. While I was earning my MFA in painting and printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University, everything I painted (except for my pastel working drawings) was big. I loved the feel of the oversized stretched canvasses beneath my paint brush. I enjoyed seeing the way the pieces filled the walls of my large university studio while I painted them. It was wonderful to have a master's thesis show of large work that gleamed on the walls of Anderson Gallery at VCU.

In most exhibitions now, the work is limited in size--usually no larger that 40 inches on the longest size. Those pieces are nice, especially the watercolors, but they lack the excitement of the big pieces that thunder from the walls. Although I enjoy experimenting with texture and color on the smaller canvasses and the wooden supports, I still long to work on the larger pieces again. However, storage becomes an issue as well as the transportation of the work to galleries and shows. Also, most galleries simply don't have the space for sizeable art work.

My VCU thesis show featured work painted with both oil and acrylics. I have many of those pieces stored in my home now. One oil painting, "Rocky Mountain High", 60" x 96", is too big to carry with me in a van as a stretched canvas. Another painting that is six-feet square has never been shown in a public gallery.

When I was working with figures, I did many paintings of our children on large canvasses. I'm glad I did because they provide special family memories for me.

I love big art. Thank you, Bay School, for an opportunity to "Think Big" once more.


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Monti - something to really 'get your painting 'teeth' into' - the project sounds fun ... and wonderful you are able to create these artistic pieces. I'd love to be able to draw - it's in the family ... but not at my level ... I guess I must practise painting with words - do more descriptive posts ... take care and all the best for the coming year - cheers Hilary

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That one there is quite amazing. Maybe you should have your own home gallery showing?

Birgit said...

The painting of the little child sleeping is so sweet and I love the colours in bold yet soft all at once. I’m glad you have a showing of large pieces. My hubby is an amazing artist...he works on wood...wood burning and they look like tapestries and his pieces are mostly large. He has few pieces right now because of trying to get his studio in order. So many tell him to create small pieces so he can sell them better but he just loves working in large so I will love to see more of your artwork. I agree with Alex, maybe you can use your home as your own gallery.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Hilary, your writing is a painting. Sometimes, you might just want to get some paint and play.

Alex, thank you. It's been a very long time since I last had a home gallery show. Maybe. We'll see.

Birgit, thanks. The child is my daughter, Amy, when she was very young. I have a variety of paintings with her in them as well as ones with the other two daughters. Those paintings would make their own show. Your husband might not be happy with the small ones. They have a different feel to them.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

That painting is so beautiful and realistic.

My friend Kerri has a Masters in painting and some of hers are massive.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Most things were big when I was in art school, Diane. I'm not sure about now. Thanks!