Although she draws inspiration for her work from these small, international models, they provide a "jumping off" point. In reality, Jeanne composes each work, altering size, colors, and even designs of her original models in order to achieve a fresh, unique look.
Jeanne's first one-woman show was at the International Tour Office in Princeton in 1990. She's been exhibiting her work consistently since then.
"...if you know exactly what you're going to do, what's the point of doing it?" -- Pablo Picasso
Betty follows this concept of Picasso's when approaching her work and in her study with other artists. As part of this commitment, she instituted the "Visiting Artists Workshop Program" which she coordinated for several years at ARTWORKS in Trenton, NJ, starting in 1999.
Betty was raised in Princeton, where she attended Miss Fine's School. Her first career was in professional theatre; at age 19 she was touring with Mae West and Burt Lahr. When her three daughters were born, she took time off to raise them, but then returned to Douglass College in the early 1980s to earn her BA. While there, she met Vicki Liberatori, and together they founded the Princeton Rep Theater, which operated in various venues in Princeton, producing contemporary plays, often premieres.
It was while teaching creative theater in Glasgow, Scotland, in the early 1990s (for the Cultural City of the Year event) that Betty's career took a left turn. She signed up for a drawing class at the city's School of Art, tried some watercolor, and has been painting ever since. Back in New Jersey, Betty began studying with various artists at ARTWORKS, including Steve Kennedy, Robert Beck, Susan Winters, and Ken McIndoe.
Ruth Morpeth of Morpeth Gallery saw works by Betty at a Phillips Mill group show, and offered her a show at her Hopewell gallery. Betty has continued to show her work there and at other regional venues.
Betty is a colorist and paints form and color wherever she finds it. She has done a series of Hunterdon County landscapes; one on the cows and pastures of the Skillman Dairy Farm; another classic series of still lifes incorporating seafood or vegetables.
Her skill with capturing food has brought her to some unusual, but rewarding, places. A recent undertaking took her to Maresca's Meat Market in Sergeantsville where she and fellow artist, Jenny Hamel, painted the butchers, brothers Joe and Emil Maresca, throughout the fall/winter of 2005. In February, 2006, the two exhibited these paintings in a converted building near the meat market. [Maresca's is well-know for it's artistry in meat preparation and has been featured in the New York Times and Saveur magazine.]
Graziella Valenti Smith:
Graziella Valenti Smith was born in New York City in 1930. Her father was a noted gastroenterologist from Majorca, Spain; her mother was from Ponce, Puerto Rico. The family had a deep appreciation for all forms of Spanish art and culture and counted Andres Segovia, Salvador Dali, and Jose Iturbi in their circle of friends.
At age 23, Graziella married into an American family that also had a rich heritage in the arts. Her husband, Tom Smith, was a talented architect who occasionally collaborated with his brother, the noted painter and sculptor, Tony Smith, on projects. Tony's wife, Jane Smith was an opera singer and noted actress. The Smith's circle of friends included Jackson Pollock, Lee Krasner, Tennessee Williams, Robert Motherwell, Mark Rothko, Helen Frankenthaler, and other key figures in American art in the 20th century.
Graziella dabbled briefly in painting as a young woman, but only after her children were grown and her husband had died, did she realize that she wanted to see life in a different way.
She enrolled in a painting class at Mercer County Community College. Her talent literally blossomed on canvas as she started to paint the flowers she loves so much. "I like flowers," Smith says, "because they are so unique and expressive of the Creator's imagination. A flower is like we are - each one is here for a time and hopefully we come to full bloom. When you start to look at each one individually, you see how beautiful it is...and besides, they hold still, so you can see them while you're painting!"
Graziella approaches any subject matter with her trademark joie de vivre. "It's so exciting to see how life really takes hold of us," she says, "It laughs with us."
She has no plans to ever stop painting. "Through painting I can share the beauty and the delight I see in life. And I exhibit my work whenever and wherever I am asked, because I want to encourage young artists to have the courage to share what they have created with others. I am still learning about life through painting, and through painting I'm still learning to share the joy of being alive."
Marie Sturken is a papermaker and printmaker whose works in handmade paper are created at Dieu Donne Papermill in New York. She is a founding member of the Princeton Artists Alliance, and has exhibited recently in two PAA exhibits - "Marsh Meditations" at Bristol-Myers Squibb, and "Vision and Voice" at the New Jersey State Museum.
About her recent work she says: "Handmade paper is simply another medium, like watercolor or pastel, but a more pliable, flexible one, in which the image is an integral part of the image. The possibilities of this medium are endless. These recent works were created at Dieu Donne Papermill in New York, using flax as a base sheet. The result is a transparent, crisp paper when dry.
"These works reflect an interest in fabric and yarn, and include embedded, stitched gossamer Japanese papers and silk organza, along with transferred and printed words and images of the tools of needlework. Humble, rather ordinary, they are transformed through a series of processes, which give them new life and meaning."
Marie's works have been exhibited extensively in solo, group, and juried national shows; and are in many public and corporate collections, including: the Museum of Modern Art Library, New York, NY, The Newark Library Print Collection, Newark, NJ, the New Jersey State Museum, Trenton, NJ, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Lawrenceville, NJ, Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital, New York, NY, and Johnson & Johnson Headquarters, New Brunswick. NJ.
purchase awards include William Paterson University, the Hunterdon Museum
of Art, and the College of New Jersey. Marie Sturken has taught papermaking
workshops for the Newark Museum, the Printmaking Council of New Jersey,
Perkins Center for the Arts and the Princeton University Art Museum
Children's Art Program.
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