Showing posts with label Vian Borchert. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vian Borchert. Show all posts

11 January 2015

Faculty and Resident Artist Exhibit at the Arts Barn

The following artists, educators and artists-in-residence, are showing their work at the Arts Barn in Gaithersburg from now until January 25, 2015. Their media range from acrylic, watercolor and oil paint to sculpture, glass work and photography. They were asked to discuss their work in terms of what they learned while producing it, and to address their students in their response, since most of them are art teachers at the Arts Barn and elsewhere in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Vian Borchert's artwork
Vian Borchert
I have two artworks in the faculty show, an acrylic painting titled "John Lennon: Love Triumphs" and another drawing in colored pencils titled “Maleficent.”

John Lennon has been my muse for many years, not only because he is a great musician and song writer, but also because of his beliefs of spreading love and peace - great ideologies any person can live by. When I look at this artwork, the first thing that comes to mind are the Beatles' song lyrics "All you need is love, love is all you need," which is true to the utmost. These words and Beatles and Lennon love songs don't only have a good ring to them, but they also carry a wonderful message as well. It is only through love that societies overcome problems and thrive and become better communities. The love that I am referring to is the love that has to start from within, love that starts from the heart and spreads within, allowing that person to bring it outward to the world. So, through a vision of love, just like John Lennon had, hope and positivity can spread.

 Lessons learned while creating the work: This piece is actually one of the few pieces where I have the portrait smiling. It really wasn't my intention to have a happy, smiling Lennon. Yet, it somehow came out that way. Maybe the spirit of John was trying to tell me something through the creation of this piece - that is why I titled it "John Lennon: Love Triumphs."

You have to be open to possibilities in art. I went into the process of creation wanting to paint a serious John Lennon painting, and ended up with a happy Lennon. So, be open to the idea that subject matters can change while creating a work of art. The point is to be open minded in your approach to the creative process.

Regarding “Maleficent,” which is a drawing done in colored pencils, I actually liked the character in the movie “Maleficent” played by Angelina Jolie. This drawing started off as somewhat of a sketch because I was approaching the drawing like children playing with Legos, figuring out what can be built from the Lego blocks in front of them. While I was working on this piece, I realized that Jolie, especially in this role, is very interesting to draw with her striking features.

What I learned from creating this piece, which deals with women's issues, is that a person can appear dark and wicked from the outside, yet, underneath that appearance can be a kind person with a loving heart. 

Students should try drawing subject matters that are not typical. This involves thinking outside of the box. So, rather than drawing the classical still life with fruits, pots and pans, make your artwork more interesting by choosing subject matters that are unusual. I find that students do better in drawing unusual subject matters, such as a child's toy rather than an apple, since they have to challenge themselves to look carefully at the unique still life. So, allow yourself to be brave in your approach to art and its creation to discover the creativity within you.

Jack Donnelly with his "Caldermobiles"
Jack Donnelly
The work in this show has been an enormous learning experience for me.

 I have been a metalsmith for many years now, but I recently discovered two things:

First, I had the opportunity to work with the amazing metal called aluminum for the very first time. Each and every single metal has its own unique properties, Alluminum (Al) is light-weight and very malleable, but it cannot be soldered or easily welded. This limitation got me exploring cold fusion methods like using aluminum pop rivets as connections. Rivets are an old-school method that I had largely not used since my 8th grade metalshop class. I love their solid industrial aesthetic.

Second, I was so fortunate as to experiment with 3D kinetic sculpture for the first time ever. I am in complete awe of the inventive work of Alexander (Sandy) Calder (1898-1976). His intuitive concoctions have taught me a new way of looking at the world. Found objects from all walks of life can inspire, if not become an actual component of the artistic creation, and the sculpture itself evolves past the static form to an ever-changing, perpetual motion machine, responding to the breezes, vibrations, and motions of life. I am thrilled to be working both of these aspects into many new projects in the New Year!
Photograph by Jaree Donnelly
Jaree Donnelly
The lesson when shooting moving water is photographing at the right time of day (early or late), getting the shutter speed just right, and using a tripod with a trigger release. By slowing it down, shooting in lower light, and using a tools to prevent the camera from shaking, you can get that beautiful, silky look!

Hung bowl by Tony Glander
Tony Glander 
I started “hanging” bowls a few years back. I was offered part of a gallery show, except there was no flat space for bowls. The solution to hang them gave them much more dimension. I just found a new hanging device that allows the bowl or plate to be taken off the wall and used.  

Watercolor by Sue Kay
 Sue Kay
While watercolors have been my medium of choice for some time now, I find I am often driven to seek new subject matter that challenges my hand and eye. This painting is the second one I have done to try and show the texture and movement of water. I have come to love the different patterns in the water, from the rushing currents with their bold lines and broad strokes to the swirling bubbles and the deeper, more quiet patterns of still water.

Painting the objects that get swept along in the current offers up even more challenges of color and texture, and helps to describe the water in its own way. The teacher in me likes to be constantly exploring and challenging my own skills in the same way I enjoy teaching and challenging my students.

Natalya B. Parris with her artwork (left) and holiday ornaments designed by her (right)
Natalya B. Parris
I have two paintings currently on display at the “Arts Barn Faculty Exhibit” (November 26, 2014 - January 25, 2015 in the Arts Barn Invitational Gallery): “Lotus" (acrylic on canvas, 12" x 12") and "From Me to You" (acrylic on canvas, 8"x10”). These paintings show that I wanted to capture movement ... like a light breeze ruffling the flowers. To create this effect, I strategically did not draw the flowers in the center of the canvas and avoided symmetry when I drew the petals and leaves. The challenge with “Lotus" was to decide where to paint the dots, where to double and triple them, and what section of the painting should have only one layer of dots or no dots at all in order to enhance the uniqueness of the flower. The other thing that both paintings have in common is that they represent “over-sized” flowers that are very colorful. Painting so many multicolored dots was challenging and fun at the same time.

Oil by Yolanda Prinsloo
Yolanda Prinsloo 
I chose to exhibit this still life painting because of the holiday season. The subject matter is sentimental, antique silver ladles and humorous porcelain creamers, objects given to me as gifts a long time ago. The painting is realistically rendered in oil on gold leaf. I enjoyed the simplicity of the work and what I experienced while working on it: a slowing down my often fast tempo, and taking time to enjoy the play of light and shadow on the objects as I took in their shapes and form.

26 February 2011

Vian Borchert

1. Where and how would you display your work in an ideal situation?
I would like my artwork to be displayed in metropolitan city galleries such NYC, LA, Berlin, Paris and other major cities, and in places like the Whitney Biennial, The Venice Biennale - Galleries such as the Allan Stone Gallery in NY and Gagosian Gallery to name a few. (This actually is my dream to show in such places).

2. If expository writing is good at elucidating and proving a point and descriptive geometry gives us the tools by which to map objects in space in relation to one another, what kind of an apparatus does art afford us? What does art do best?
Art can make your senses wake up. Art can do many things. It is used as a medium of communication to convey a message - be it to shock, beautify or touch us visually. Also, art can serve as a form of therapy for the maker of art, the artist.

3. What can you expect from your audience/fans/viewing public? What would you like them to know about your work?
I would like my viewer  / audience / fans / public to appreciate and like what they see when they view my art. I like them to have a visual and an intellectual dialogue with my artwork. Also, I would like them to be visually pleased with this visual interaction.

For the second part of the question, I wouldn't like the viewer to know much or have any preconceived ideas about my artwork since I believe that artwork and in this case my artwork should speak on its own rather than me standing next to it and explaining it to the passers by or other form of explanation.

4. Marcel Duchamp said - "Enough with retinal art!" What is your reaction as an artist to this statement?
I like Marcel Duchamp because he was a creative thinker, and he always had a driven hunger for discovering interesting ideas and subject matters such as "ready-made art," like his Bicycle Wheel. For his time, he was a pioneer in innovation inspired art. And, yes. I agree with his statement above: there is more than meets the eye in "thinking outside of the box" art; there is a lot of thought, imagination and creativity that goes into Duchamp-ian kind of art.

5. Do you think that there is still room for art movements in today's pluralistic climate?
Yes, as long as there are thinkers, there will be art movements. I actually think of myself or my philosophies on art, my views and making art as my own school of thought.

6. What is one question you wished we had asked you about your art? Please feel free to answer it.
Most of the time, I try with my answers to cover the main picture that my art illustrates or conveys. Thus, in this regard, I can't think of a particular question that I would have liked to be asked.

Current Shows:

Opening Reception: Thursday, March 17, 7–9PM
Celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Annual Strathmore Artist Juried Exhibition.
February 26, 2011 - April 2, 2011
Free and Open to the Public
For more information call (301) 581-5125
The Mansion at Strathmore
10701 Rockville Pike
North Bethesda, MD 20852-3324

Title: "Vian Shamounki Borchert's Expressionist Journey of Multi Media"
Artwork is on display at the City of Gaithersburg's Kentlands Mansion Gallery (2nd Floor) from January 27, 2011 until March 27, 2011.
The Kentlands Mansion is located at:
320 Kent Square Road in Gaithersburg, Maryland 20878

Gallery hours: Monday - Friday from 9AM - 4PM
For a viewing appointment please call: 301-258-6394 or 301-258-6425