Saturday, January 31, 2009

An Artist's Journey

An Artist’s Journey
By Elise Saad-Freelance Writer

Joanne’s art background found its roots in the mid 70’s when, as a teenage girl, she embarked on her first art class in acrylic painting of still-life and landscape motifs under the tutelage of Anita Sutherland, a member of Rhode Island’s Woonsocket Fine Arts Society. Joanne explored her interest in art and developed her unique style and application to form, light and color that would broaden and remain a life-long passion.

After her introduction to painting, a growing ambition to hone her drawing skill ensued. Studying under Rhode Island School of Design graduate, Marguerite Vitale, Joanne learned Perspective and Anatomy with the integrity of live models. Here, she also explored the challenging and dramatic medium of Watercolor.

During the burgeoning trend of “country” home d├ęcor, her folk art pieces made their debut onto the local marketplace. Joanne’s artful spirit drove her to move beyond the restrictive confines of “country” and explore new mediums with which to have a creative hand. Inspired by the play of light against a colored glass shoe collection, she journeyed into the study of stained glass creating pieces that range in scope from sun-catchers and lampshades to architectural elements, such as window panels. In concert with her advancing art skills, Joanne’s retail stage expanded to include stained glass art in various boutiques of Wickford Village, RI, home of the prestigious annual Wickford Art Festival. Lured by creativity & intricacy, she furthered her artistic endeavors to include making pottery and jewelry.

Having explored so many art forms, Joanne returned to stained glass with greater zeal, vision and personality- enter Mosaic Art. Gratified by full creative license afforded in mosaic art, Joanne blends elements of pottery, beads, and glass to create functional and decorative pieces that are imbued with her signature whimsy. Joanne’s ever-growing mosaic portfolio includes wall art, tables, mirrors, wall hooks, flowerpots, a birdhouse and even a mosaic guitar!

On the retail side, her internet presence now facilitates the availability of Joanne’s artwork to the international marketplace. Visit Joanne’s virtual studio at www.floweringmoon.etsy.com. Her virtual store has been featured at fellow artists’ blog sites www.smashgirl.blogspot.com and www.championofthesun.blogspot.com. Joanne’s mosaic art is featured in Mosaic Rocks’ 2008 Mosaic Year Book.

A side note- Joanne’s Studio:
A charming cedar- shingled shed plays host to her creative spirit. Courtesy, her husband, Mike, it is stage right to her summertime outdoor living space and adjacent to a small perennial garden adorned with her original garden elements. Step inside and you’ll find a serious studio fully equipped with all the tools of her trade. Her worktable is chockfull with utilitarian objects: a hand-thrown pot houses pencils, pliers & glasscutters; containers filled with cut glass are segregated by color; divided trays section off specialty beads and glass nuggets; and an illuminated cutting grid sits front and center casting light to her artistic direction. The surrounding walls are adorned with pieces of original artwork such as, a stained glass window panel and both, acrylic and watercolor paintings.