In Living Color

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“A small brazier glowed near the monk’s left hand. On a lectern before him lay pots of paints, brushes, a quill, a pen, a knife, a sizeable handbell, the tooth of some animal, and a piece of parchment.

It was the parchment that commanded the room. Until he saw it, Len didn’t realize how starved he had been of colour. Villagers dressed in various shades of brown and beige, like their furniture and fields now, here, was an irruption of the rainbow, as if a charm of goldfinches had landed on the manuscript and been transfixed.”
Diana Norman, Fitzempress’ Law

Hello and thank you for taking your precious and limited time to read todays blog at Lovetts where we feature art, artists and events occurring at the gallery.

The good news I’m bringing you today is colorful news. Color in art. Or I could say and be just as correct, art in color. I’m featuring a few artists that use boldness in their application of their work. They create with a palette that runs the gamut of the color wheel. This seemed like an appropriate time to speak of this element of art, as nature itself likes to parade its richness of color during the Spring season.

Examples of color come in many forms; such as oils by artists Todd Ford, K. Henderson, Melanie Florio, Natalie Featherston, Natalie Wiseman, Lacey Lewis, Janice Sugg, or Whitney Hall, to name a few. Rich color can come in the form of glass such as the works of artist Pavel Novak. They all share a common denominator in their adventuresome use of color, but they differ in their mediums, subject matter and styles. And of course, their imagination. What roles does color play? Color is surely no lightweight in the roster of things that have a direct and profound impact on our lives. Color is influential as to the choices we make in surrounding ourselves with certain colors because of how they make us feel; We see this in art, in exterior and interior decorating, our clothing, cars, nails and hair, and in nature………. just about everything really. There are positive and negative components as well. In getting to know someone better, “what’s your favorite color?” seems to be an often-asked question. So, color is a big deal! It says something about us!

Why are we endeared by some colors and repelled by others? Because color affects behavior and stimulates reactions. It’s optics, it’s what attracts us as a viewer, it’s what catches the eye. Color can energize us or have a calming effect. And then there exists the aesthetic quality to color…the sheer beauty of it. Some artists attribute certain meanings to color by way of their individual experience or perception of a color. Most of us do that also, without realizing it. Just look at the names on crayons, or house paints, titles on works of art.

So, okay, I admit that as I just wrote those words about crayon names, my mind drifted nostalgically to see what some of the names I could remember. Then I recalled that we keep a large quantity of crayons in the backroom here at the gallery for our grandchildren and client’s children to use and cheating on memory became my next move. (I dug out the Crayola bin). To illustrate how we describe color and color finds its way to describe us, here are a few examples: It’s not just pink, maybe its “Carnation Pink” or it looks like “Cotton Candy”. Brown may be brown, but sometimes “Timber Wolf” or “Fuzzy Wuzzy” brown gets to the heart of a shade, by damn. Ever caught in the dilemma of choosing between “Sea Green or “Tropical Rain Forest”? Should it be “Midnight Blue” or “Wild Blue Yonder”? Maybe in a more rebellious mood, I will grasp for “Neon Carrot”, “Electric Lime” or “Unmellow Yellow” and throw caution to the wind! Oh, the slings and arrows of such decisions!

This is a good example of why I love reading/ written words so much……words are colorful too! Before color can show its wildness and wantonness for variety, there exists a few rules in the color world. In groups is how we identify them. First is primary colors, red, blue, and yellow. Second is secondary (hmm…that was redundant!), colors are orange, green and purple. They are made by mixing two primaries’. Tertiary or intermediate colors are made by mixing adjacent primary and secondary hues, that give us yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, red-violet, red-orange and yellow orange. Want to mix complimentary colors? -----proof right there that opposites attract! It’s a free for all after this point! Want tint? Add white. Shade? Add black. The color wheel isn’t just some pretty, innocent circle as it appears on the surface, but it is actually full of schemes and relationships!

The artist is free to create with arbitrary color---colors they want to “express” with. Color provides rhythm and emphasis to a composition, mood and depth by color value for lightness and darkness. Color is a black and white issue and it’s a gray area too. Monochromatics. I will talk about that in more depth in another blog and discuss the artists we have, who create visually this way. Talk or debate? Oh yes, the topic of the colors of black and white as bona fide colors is disputed by some, so this topic isn’t so black and white after all and then the grayscale weighs in on the conversation too! Stayed tuned for the starring roles of black and white in art in my next blog, where I will feature the works of artist who paint, draw, and sculpt in black and white and we touch on the raging debate, “Are black and white colors?”.

Art pieces, created in any color, subtle or strong, resonate with us, so don’t think you aren’t affected by color because the truth is…. we all are! It’s all around us! Today, the yellow warmth of the sun feels great on my skin, the red tulips in the garden are vibrant against the greenery, and the blue sky is tying it all together in a calming way. This sight of color was helpful, as I was going outdoors to take out the trash, which made what was a chore, a pleasure instead. And yes, I applied a pink shade of lipstick today that matched my shoes and my rosy mood! Thank you, color!

Nature started first with color outdoors…….

Then artists and their creativity and imagination brought it indoors.

What palettes and themes mean something to you? Be conscious. Why is “your favorite color”, your favorite color?

Of course, the questions of color are only a beginning. Why do you like a particular subject matter or style or a combination of many? How are you affected by 2 dimensional versus 3-dimensional works of art? We take much for granted of what comprises us of who we are. We may know what we like, but we don’t necessarily know why. Art is a provocative way to learn about ourselves.

Lovetts Gallery invites you to the joy in art collecting……………………………...


Thank you for supporting the artists and their works of art at Lovetts Gallery! The above artists are just a sample of the many artists we represent that indulge the senses in color. Come experience “the irruption of the rainbow, like the charm of goldfinches landing”!

“I never met a color I didn’t like”
Dale Chihuly, American Glassmaker

Raven Sawyer