"Visions of Arizona"- New works by Birgitta Lapides at the
Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery
October 6th through Nov. 28, 2012
“I don't try to paint or make my mixed media collage the way things look. For me what is important is to catch the essence of the subject. That will say how I feel about it - not how it looks,” says mixed-media artist Birgitta Lapides of her soothing desert scenes, “I also want to create a feeling of simplicity and serenity, especially in my meditation landscapes.”
By using layers of thin Japanese papers that she paints and collages into her works, she is able to create landscapes that capture a mood or an essence of her beloved subject: Arizona. Her rusty oranges, warm earth tones and bright blues are clearly inspired by her visions of her adopted home state. A native of Sweden, where sunshine is a rare commodity, Lapides is enamored with the fantastic light of the desert.
"I never go out and take photos or sketch before I start a painting,” she explains, “I listen to classical music and just try to be receptive to my feelings about what I am doing." This form of painting, from the inside out, is felt as an adventure to the artist. It's her artistic journey that excites her, and it's the adventure into the unknown that inspires her.
Her beautiful materials meld perfectly with her lovely visions. “Since I took a workshop in making paper at the Haystack School in Maine I fell in love with paper- making the Asian way with very thin, delicate paper, many made from organic materials like sea weed, banana peels, etc. It is a very time-consuming but fascinating process that I cannot do at home. But I always try to find very thin white papers, often Japanese, that I paint always myself and use in my collage. By experimenting with very thin paper you can get transparency and interesting effects by super-imposing papers in different colors.”
“Visions of Arizona” opening reception starts at 5:30pm on October 6th, in conjunction with Jerome’s popular ARTwalk, and runs through Thanksgiving. The Jerome Artists Cooperative is located at 502 Main, and is open from 10am-6pm, daily. The opening night party will feature refreshments and a chance to chat with the artist.
“I love strong colors, simple forms, which I think adapt very well to the landscapes here in Arizona,” says Lapides,“For me it's the creation of a piece that I get completely absorbed in that is the reward in itself.”
For more information call 928-639-4276 or visit the gallery online at jeromecoop.com