Monday, December 4, 2017
Susan Hennelly received her BFA and BS in Education from Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA. She earned 12 credits at University of California, Berkeley, CA.
Susan was one of 12 featured artists in the Arts-Mid- Hudson gallery exhibit “inspired by Plein Air” this year. Other juried exhibitions include “Meeting Past” at Akin Library and Museums, Pawling, NY; “National Women’s History Month featuring Women Artists of the Hudson Valley” at Howland Cultural Center, Beacon, NY and “Victory for Tyler” at Crane Arts, Philadelphia, PA. She received Honorable Mention at Sharon Historical Center, Sharon, CT and 1st Prize at the Friends of the Great Swamp Celebration.
Susan has had Solo exhibitions at Millbrook Free Library, Millbrook, NY; Dover Plains Library, Dover Plains, NY; Thalheimer Hall of Maplebrook School, Amenia,NY and North End Trilogy, Barnegat Light, NJ.
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Chinese legend tells us that the Yellow Emperor’s 4-eyed court historian Cang Jie created the first written characters inspired by the patterns of lines on the back of a tortoise he encountered in the mountains when looking for the inspiration. That was in, traditionally, the 27th century BCE. But by at latest 1200 BCE we already have a fully developed, if grammatically abbreviated, system of writing which has, moreover, the qualities of an art form! How did that happen? I want to be in on that inspiration continually.
I have always been fascinated by the process of creation—the birth of a being, a poem, an idea: something that never was in the world before and now is. Of course each new idea is an expansion from all that came before in the life of the person and the culture, but still, there is the mystery of what a great teacher called “the space between thoughts.”
Asian Brush Calligraphy—Shodo—presents the calligrapher with this real and mystical experience repeatedly. Years of discipline in Shodo, including six years’ intensive study with Shodo master Shinzan Kamijo, inform and in-form all my work. Even when I don’t see it, others tell me they do. You can judge for yourself.
Besides a heightened sensitivity to line and a feeling for alive white space, Shodo demands an awareness of materials, their qualities and textures and the intricacies of their interactions. The art requires you to deal with the properties of absorbent washi papers, the maddeningly flexible Asian brush, and the tricky subtleties of sumi inks. As I turn to western mediums I have tried to bring to them the sensibility they demand.
From my youngest days playing in woods and fields, drinking from a hidden pure natural spring and throwing myself headlong into deep forest moss, a Haiku poet’s delight in the miniature discoveries of the natural world have never ceased to thrill me. Much of my art is Haiku, which, not incidentally, I also write.
Another aspect of the natural world and what humans have added to it that fascinates me is what I see as the “unrandom random:” the way leaves fall on a section of walking path, a brief moment’s configuration of clouds, seemingly unrelated materials and bits of detritus forming a unity after all.
I am excited when I have a chance to share my celebration and thankfulness for the world we share. My gratitude goes out to the Kent Library and to Jeanette Jeanette Rodriguez for this opportunity, and to you for sharing with me.
Friday, September 29, 2017
“Drawing is the root of everything…” Vincent Van Gogh
My work represents the fragmentation of history, space and time, which are amalgamated with
a feeling, experience, memory, or place I’ve visited. These are combined to create a conflict
between chaos and order, which are often repeated, altered, and disjointed.
I am a British born American artist, and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Visual
Arts, Magna Cum Laude from the State University of New York at Purchase College in 2006. I
was born in Staines, an industrial town on the edge of London in 1971.
After my parents divorced in 1977, my mother, three sisters and I moved north to the county of Cambridgeshire.
Drawing has been an integral part of my life since early childhood. Growing up with a makeshift
darkroom in the kitchen, it’s in my genes to draw and photograph the world around me.
Singing and dancing is in my blood also; remembering the stories my mother shared with me
about her performing on stage among famous British acts, such as comedian, Tommy Cooper.
I immigrated to the United States from England in 2000 and have settled in the scenic Mid
Hudson Valley region of New York with my husband, two daughters, and four cats. My house
and studio overlook a lake, which inspires my creativity.
As well as making art, nature and wildlife conservation is my passion, and I consider the birds and mammals in which I live among, my extended family too! I am a member of several conservation groups, including the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and FrOGS (Friends of the Great Swamp).
In my work, I apply bold and dramatic line to abstract subjects, which are often overlooked. I’m
rarely seen without a sketchbook, and am always drawing from life, or my imagination. I am
drawn to light and shadow, and fascinated with shapes, and how they are often repeated, or
connected throughout the synthetic, and natural environment.
In my studio, I have a handmade doll house, which I continually use as a reference for many of my works. I utilize my background in photography, and British heritage to create a mostly monochromatic color palette. The cool and vibrant use of blues, oranges and browns are prominent in many of my works too, which correlate with the architecture and climate of the East of England, and the interior furnishings I grew up with.
Currently, I am making works in textile, and am in the process of applying to go back to school to study for an A.A.S in Fashion Design and Technology, where I will learn many aspects of textile design, with a strong emphasis in Entrepreneurship.
Friday, September 1, 2017
GRETCHEN HOFFMANN ABENE (Mother)
Gretchen Hoffmann Abene began painting at a very early age. Her independent study
with noted established artists such as Albert Handel, Daniel Green, Mario Cooper,
Frank Webb, David Dunlop, Ati Gropius Johansen and Christine Debrosky has
strengthened her pursuit of color relationship and composition in the painting process.
”I am most inspired by the spaces that have been enjoyed by all of the families of
beings on earth.” Gretchen continues to work within the Music and Art communities and
balances her creative and family life on a number of different continents. Gretchen is an
Elected Member of Kent Art Association.
KATHY L. BRAUN (Daughter)
Artist ~ Architect
A native of Cincinnati, Kathy Braun was raised in New York City. After a career as an actress, she moved to New Mexico where she pursued a degree in architecture. Kathy, a Registered Architect, received her BAA from the University of New Mexico School of Architecture & Planning and has her own practice which concentrates on residential work. She later returned to New York and now lives in Dutchess County with her husband and two Labrador retrievers. Kathy works primarily with watercolor, graphite pencil and photography. She is inspired by forgotten and discarded objects and buildings, the rich diversity of the southwest and northeast, and the simple things in life.
Roxanne Loudin (Niece)
Roxanne Loudin is a New York City native who draws inspiration from the multitude of urban and rural settings where she spent her childhood. She received her first camera while living in Oak Park, Illinois and later developed a passion for industrial architecture and abandoned spaces while exploring the deserted mills and military forts of New England’s rocky seacoast. Through the process of documenting these settings, she identified beauty in the emptiness of these environments and poetry in the words written by others as they had their own unique experience. This is a collection of the words, spaces, and people of her hometown.