Thursday, December 1, 2016

Catching Up, Taking a Break

Joan Applebaum, Barbara Baum, Bobbie Panek and Judy McGinn pose with Gambrinus the King of Beers.

Catching Up

After spending months preparing for two big events I decided to take some time off from studio work to attend to some things that had fallen by the wayside. The events were both wonderful and all-consuming and I was cramming in preparations for each as I was trying to keep up with my regular studio work. Exhausting! 

The first event was the 90th Anniversary of the CNY Branch of The National League of American Pen Women. I should start by saying we celebrated our anniversary for an entire year with special exhibits, field trips and events. And seven of us went to the Pen Women Biennial in Washington DC, an unforgettable experience.
(Above) Five members of our group outside the White House West Wing just after our private tour.

The culmination of our year-long celebration was an exhibit of art, poetry, prose from current Pen Women and artifacts from our 90 years of history. The exhibit was held at Onondaga Historical Association---the best place in town to celebrate history! We also gave out "Friend of The Arts" awards to three members of the community.

I was in charge of the art/poetry show and the exhibit of artifacts. Which means that for a few months a whole lot of artifacts sat in my living room waiting to be combed through and either selected or put back in storage (AKA still in my living room). 

Being a history buff I was in my element when I was sorting through the artifacts and placing them on display at OHA. But alas, the exhibit is over and I still have several boxes in my living room.

Many people were involved in making our Pen Women 90th Anniversary Celebration a success--too many to name here, but essentially the entire CNY Branch of the NLAPW and Onondaga Historical Association! What a great night it was.

And if you would like to learn more about the NLAPW visit

And On to the Next Event

As soon as the Pen Women event ended I started attending to last minute painting and details for my show at Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown. I was delighted when Amy Bartell the director of the gallery asked me back in 2015 if I was interested in showing my work in the Fall of 2016. I had planned on this show being a little different from my other exhibits. I always try to have a general theme (I'm usually all about the landscape and water) but this time I wanted a slightly different twist on my usual.

Land, Sky, Water

Land, Sky, Water are themes I have visited often in my work and this time I selected that theme but with a specific direction. This time I was concerned with painting atmosphere, rather than specific imagery. I had a few images all set for the show but planned on creating a few more. As it turned out I painted seven new paintings to go with seven other paintings I had done previously. I was very happy to sell a painting even before the show went up on display! But by the time I was done I needed a break from painting.

The opening reception which was part of the Downtown Artist Series, was well attended. There were friends from Syracuse, North Country artist friends, fellow Pen Women, friends from church and many students from SUNY Oswego.

The Downtown Artist series also featured the work of two student artists: Graphic Design student Melissa Digiovanna and Poet Milo Licata. Melissa, pictured here with her mom and yours truly,
 created a poster based on the colors of my painting "Daybreak". Milo wrote two poems based on my work. After the student presentations I gave a short artist talk.

Taking a Break

So, after these two big events I decided to take a break from the studio (yeah remember that from the first paragraph???) and concentrated on removing wallpaper, spackling walls, painting and otherwise finishing up the kitchen renovation started way back in the summer. Then I went onto tackle a few more neglected things on my list. And then a few more. Then it was time to put up the Christmas decorations.

All the while I kept thinking of my next painting. Break's over. Time to get back to the studio.

Oh, and those boxes of Pen Women artifacts are still in my living room.

Related Link:
My show Land, Sky, Water will be on display at the Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown until January 20, 2017.

"Daybreak" watercolor

Monday, November 21, 2016

Just Can't Leave the Water!

In my recent artist talk at Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown I mentioned how living near the water has influenced my paintings. That influence comes through in my other work as well. The colors, the images all make their way into the more abstracted pieces I do in silk and in glass.

The wall hanging on silk has our iconic little island against a tie-dye background bordered by blue fabric. Ornamental buttons made from polymer clay in shades of blue, green and white anchor the corners with shimmering beads (sunlight on the water???) coming from their centers. 

The 2 glass plates are part of my "Land Between the Water" series. I can identify with those each summer as I go between home, Grass Lake and The River. 

So even here at home with the snow swirling around outside, I am back at the lake.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown Presents: Land, Sky, Water

Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown Presents:


Land, Sky, Water 
Watercolor, Acrylic and Pastel
by Joan Applebaum

"The focus of this exhibit is on landscape - specifically on relationships between land, sky and water. I am intrigued by the drama of light and moisture mingling in the air creating those silvery spaces where land, sky and water connect, resulting in portrayal of atmosphere rather than of a specific scene. The unique characteristics and challenges of each medium (watercolor, acrylic and pastel) influence the final look of each painting." - Joan Applebaum

Joan Applebaum's colorful paintings of Upstate New York and its woodlands and waterways have been exhibited in galleries and shows throughout New York State.

In addition to being a working artist, Joan teaches during the summer months at the Thousand Islands Arts Center in Clayton. She maintains studios in her home base in East Syracuse and at her camp in Redwood.

Joan's exhibits have included solo shows at the Delavan Art Gallery, the Adirondack Centers for the Arts in Blue Mountain Lake and Old Forge, and the Community Arts Council Gallery in Utica and several locations in Syracuse and surrounding areas.
November 4, 2016 - January 20, 2017
Reception and Downtown Artist Series
Friday, November 45-7pm
Downtown Artists Series: 6pm
Artist's Talk: Joan Applebaum
Poet: Milo Licata
Graphic Designer: Melissa Digiovanna

Inspired by Joan Applebaum's work, Milo Licata will read new work written in
response to the exhibition. Melissa Digiovanna will discuss her graphic design
interpretation of this collaboration.

This series is sponsored by SCMA Dean, Dr. Julie Pretzat and ARTSwego

Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown:
186 West First Street, Oswego, NY 13126 (315) 216 - 4985
Oswego State Downtown
Gallery Hours:

Wednesday:  12pm - 5pm
Thursday:  10am - 6pm
Friday:  10am - 5pm
Saturday:  11am - 5pm
Sunday - Tuesday:  Closed

Amy E. Bartell
Tyler Art Gallery, Assistant Director
Instructor: Graphic Design and Illustration
227 Tyler Hall
SUNY Oswego
Oswego, NY 13126

Sunday, October 2, 2016

New Images for Land--Sky--Water at Tyler Art Gallery @Oswego State Downtown

Bellingham Rain, watercolor

New Show, New Images

Over the last 6 weeks I have been preparing some new images for my upcoming show at Tyler Art Gallery @Oswego State Downtown. The exhibit titled Land--Sky--Water will feature at least 4 new watercolors and 3 new acrylic paintings.

These pieces, along with 7 other paintings are all about atmosphere and less about portraying a specific location. There are a couple of paintings with some landmark images which will immediately betray their location, but all of the others are non-specific. 

Haunted by Water

To quote Norman Maclean in A River Runs Through It and Other Stories, I am haunted by waters.
I have always been drawn to the water and find my self most at peace when I am by the water. I love painting the shimmering surface of the water mirroring the moods of the sky and the morning mist rising and mingling with the air in such a way that it's hard to tell where the land begins and the water ends.

Those are types of paintings you will find in this show. A little less detailed than some of my other work; it's definitely all about atmosphere and using the push-pull of warm and cool colors to convey depth and mood.

The show opens November 4 with a reception from 5:00 - 7:00 pm. I'll be giving an artist talk around 6:00 pm followed by a presentation by a poet and a graphic designer. They will be discussing how my work is interpreted in their art form.

I hope you will join us!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

LAND--SKY--WATER opens Nov 4 at Tyler Art Gallery @ Oswego State Downtown

"Daybreak"  watercolor


I've been preparing for an exhibit at Tyler Art Gallery@Oswego State Downtown. Yesterday I had an opportunity to see the space which is located in an old bank in Downtown Oswego. It is conveniently located near bookstores, restaurants and an artists' co-op/store. So I'm happy to be surrounded by so much culture. And of course to be near the water.

Water plays a huge role in my work as it has been the focus of so many pieces. Especially in those pieces where sky and water merge almost seamlessly, so that you can't tell where the sky begins and the water ends. 

Other times water has served as a vehicle for reflection and distortion of landscape with colors and shapes bouncing recklessly across the picture plane.

The focus of this exhibit will be on landscape, specifically on relationships between land, sky and water. I am intrigued by the drama of light and moisture mingling in the air creating those silvery spaces where land, sky and water connect, resulting in portrayal of atmosphere rather than of a specific scene.

The unique characteristics and challenges of each medium (watercolor, acrylic and pastel) will influence the final look of each painting.

Locations: Bellingham WA, Dingle Ireland, Cape Henlopen Delaware, Hull Massachusettes, St. Lawrence River, Grass Lake-- just to mention a few

For the most part the locations in the paintings are non-specific, except for a few landmarks which you will spot right away. The show will open on Friday, November 4, 5:00 - 7:00 pm, with a reception open to the public.

I hope to see you there!

Monday, August 29, 2016

It's Been a Great Summer!

"Marina #1"  acrylic

It's Been a Great Summer!

And it's not over yet. Thank goodness. I have come to the conclusion that we need an extra week in each month, especially in the summer.

Once again I have had the privilege to teach a few summer classes at The Thousand Islands Arts Center in Clayton. I've lost track how many summers I have taught painting there but it is one of my favorite places to teach. It's also been a treat to see some wonderful art shows in the TIAC Gallery.

This summer I taught a couple of watercolor classes, an acrylic painting class and an intro to painting on silk class. In each class I was impressed by the students' willingness to try something new. And as always the teacher learns as well as the students,  so I have a few new ideas to experiment with in the coming months.

What's coming up for Windy Hill Studio?

In November I have a solo show at SUNY Oswego State Downtown Gallery.

The show titled "Land-Sky-Water" opens November 4 and I'll have more information about the show in upcoming blog posts.

Meanwhile, here's a preview of one of the images from the show.

"Dingle, Land, Sky and Water"  pastel