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In Their Element: Ashland Open Studios Tour Gives an Inside View

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Seeing artists in their natural habitats is a bit like watching exotic wildlife in BBC’s Planet Earth series, or seeing a beautifully choreographed dance for the first time. The Ashland Gallery Association and local artists are offering a unique view into the creative worlds of art in their homes and spaces. This tour is free and open to the public; a map of the open studios is available at ashlandost.com. We talked with a few of the artists sharing their work about what makes this event so spectacular.

 

Your name: Elin Babcock 

Your main art medium: Assemblage Sculpture, Lyrical Abstract Painting

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: Various assemblage pieces and paintings.

Have you participated before? Yes, every year since AOST started. 

What is your inspiration for your art? Searching for balanced compositions by assembling and repurposing found objects.

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? The experience of meeting artists who express their creativity in diverse ways. No two studios are alike. 

 

 


Your name: Dana Feagin

Your main art medium: Oil paintings of animals

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: While I am not scheduled for a demo, I will be painting when I am not busy chatting with people visiting my studio. Original oil paintings, books, prints and cards will be available for purchase & all of the paintings hanging in my studio will be paired with a poem written by Kat von Cupcake for that animal. Some of these pairings are included in our book Love Rhymes with Everything: Animal Ruminations Through Poetry and Paintings published last year by Ashland Creek Press, and others are newer works. All proceeds from my sales during the Open Studio Tour will be donated to Sanctuary One in Jacksonville, OR.

Have you participated before? I have participated in the Open Studio since it began, except for last year due to a family commitment.

What is your inspiration for your art? Animals are my inspiration—it is all about them. I have tried painting other subjects, but it just isn’t interesting to me. I almost gave up painting until I realized that if I’m not painting an animal, I completely lose interest in the process. I volunteer with the county animal shelter & Sanctuary One, and have painted animals available for adoption, in addition to commissioned pet portraits. Spending time with all these animals has resulted in the growth of my animal family. I now share my art studio with five adopted bunnies; I’ve been a foster failure a few times now. I am also member of HeARTsSpeak, an international group of creative people uniting art and advocacy to increase the visibility of shelter animals. All of my profits are donated to animal charities. 

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? I hope people leave feeling a bit lighter, or even smile, after seeing my happy animal art paired with Kat’s poetry. Some of the poems are very funny, while others are more serious and make you think. Visitors might even feel inspired to visit a shelter or sanctuary, adopt an animal, or volunteer.  

 

Your name: Denise Souza Finney

Your main art medium: Acrylic Paint

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: Figurative painting and poppy paintings.  I am doing a demo on Saturday in creating texture and depth in acrylic paint. 

Have you participated before? Yes, this is my fifth year.

What is your inspiration for your art? My own experiences in my life and how to create a language or voice for that.  Also I studied dance for a long time and am interested in showing movement in my work.

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? I hope my visitors see how much I love what I do and maybe see some of the work that doesn’t end up in a gallery or on your website.

 

Name: Paula Fong

Medium: Watercolor, and Pen and Ink

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: My gallery will showcase my illustrations celebrating water of all forms in our landscape, from the fluid movement of river rapids, to the changing moods in a cloudy sky.

Have you participated before? This will be my first participation in the Studio Tour. Visitors will discovery my studio set on a hill overlooking the Rogue Valley, where I am fortunate enough to put creativity to work with paintbrush and pen. They will find a gallery that displays the body of my work and its range of diversity.  

What is your inspiration for your art? Inspired by nature, both up close and from a landscape perspective, I celebrate what I see that is both artistically beautiful and scientifically interesting.  

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? By varying perspective, focus, season and habitat, I truly have an infinite palette.  

 

Your name: Elaine Frenett

Your main art medium: Watermedia

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: I’ll be doing a demonstration Saturday at 3 pm painting Plein Air (painting out of doors).

Have you participated before? Yes, last year.

What is your inspiration for your art? My feelings and my daily life … often something visual touches me strongly enough to capture or I have emotions that bubble up and abstract/mixed media come into play.

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? Input from the public, observation/understanding of how art is created and passing along the “bug” to express ourselves without judgment.

 

 

 

Your Name: Jay Gordon, and I am affiliated with Enclave Studios.

Your main art medium: For this show, I am primarily using oil paint, watercolor, and graphite, although I will have some printmaking pieces on display as well.

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: My work in this year’s show will focus on flowers, which I find fascinating because they can be portrayed in so many ways: in still life, graphic design, botanical illustration, and fantasy illustration.  We will also be doing a full-day figure drawing demonstration in our studio on Saturday, October 13, with live models!

Have you participated before? I recently relocated here from the East Coast, so this will be my first Ashland open studio tour.

What is your inspiration for your art? I am inspired by many artists and subjects, but running through all of them is a love of strong design, beautiful color and powerful concepts.  Among my current favorites are Hiroshige, Andrew Wyeth, Winslow Homer, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Egon Schiele, but the list is long and always growing!

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? I think our visitors will really enjoy the high degree of workmanship and wide variety of expression at our studio, and I hope that they can participate in our enthusiasm for self-expression and imagination.

 

Your name: Harriet Greene

Your main art medium: Marble stonecut printing and sculpture

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: I am “Sculpting for Peace” and hope to be carving Saturday and Sunday if weather permits.

Have you participated before? Marty Goldman (my husband) also on the tour and myself were original members when the tour was first discussed. I believe it has been running for 3 years.

What is your inspiration for your art?  Life is my inspiration. My love for the wilderness has inspired me to do my wildflower and animal series. My desire for Peace forced me to do something about it. I don’t march, I don’t scream and yell about it. But I can carve. So I carve for peace. My interest in Native Americans ended up in eight large carvings of their authentic speeches to the American government about the taking of their lands and breaking treaties, “Indian Oratory of Eight Great Chiefs.”

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it?  I hope people come out in droves to see everybody’s work. We all work so hard and need to be appreciated. I hope our work inspires people to dream, to try new mediums, to know that the world is alive with art.

 

Your name: Claudia Law

Your main art medium: Textiles (Art Quilts)

What you will be showcasing/demonstrating in this year’s Open Studio Tour: I will be showing my art quilts at my home studio: 762 B St., Ashland.

Have you participated before? Yes, this is my 4th year on the tour.

What is your inspiration for your art? Most of my quilts portray images from Nature. I’m attracted to subjects that epitomize strength, endurance under adversity, and lasting beauty. I usually create pieces that are quite large.

What do you hope people take away from the Open Studio Tour event and your work in it? It’s a joy to be able to share my art and to give people a chance to learn about the wonder of cloth, fibers and textiles—as an art medium as well as a rich tactile experience.

 

Ashland Open Studio Tour

Saturday, October 13 and Sunday, October 14

11 am – 5 pm

ashlandost.com

Free

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