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April 13, 2004 > Garden to Gallery

Garden to Gallery

Olive Hyde Exhibit Review

by Arathi Satish

It is beautiful to see flowers blooming everywhere. For people who love colorful flowers, this is the perfect time to visit Olive Hyde Art Gallery to view a colorful and vibrant new exhibit, "Garden to Gallery". The exhibit features two Bay Area artists, Sarah Waggoner and Carolyn Lord, and artist Tracy De Camp from Bellevue, Washington.

Tracy DeCamp
Tracy DeCamp's exhibit consists of paintings of beautiful and vibrant flowers. She literally takes a magnifying glass into her garden - her personal landscape. She studies the color, texture and form of flowers and paints them on the canvas with an amplified and majestic presence. Her paintings are intense, vibrant and alive whose roots lie in the bright Florida sunshine of her youth.

According to her father, Tracy started painting at around five years of age. She now paints with her children and volunteers in school and would like to conduct summer workshops. "When I choose to paint flowers, especially lilies, it's because I love the color and shape. Color and texture are pure inspiration for me and since gardening is a passion of mine, painting the flowers that I grow is an extension of that passion". Tracy's flowers are gorgeous, competing with the beauty of natural flowers in her garden. This exhibit includes White Amaryllis (diptych), Red Daylily, Pink Daylily, Large Amaryllis, Asiatic Lilies, Red Amaryllis I, Red Amaryllis II, White Amaryllis, Casablanca Lily, Antique Rose, Rose Study I, and Rose Study II.

Carolyn Lord
Carolyn Lord has been working with watercolor for 25 years. She is inspired by contrasts and unusual juxtapositions. To her, painting allows her to express herself and a comfortable way to spend an afternoon! Her painting approaches have evolved to include a loose brush style of her own garden, neighborhood gardens and public gardens. She feels that home gardens have an intimacy and randomness that yields unexpected relationships, whereas public gardens, maintained for continuous display, can be enjoyed either at close quarters or as a landscape of broad vistas or long views.

Carolyn's California connection is obvious in recurring motifs of succulents and cacti, pots, and palms. Her use of tile and stucco arches identifies her paintings as those from a California garden. She points out, "The paintings I selected for "Garden to Gallery" show various aspects of gardens. The paintings depict the visual delight of the thoughtful or spontaneous orchestration of garden elements: flowers, shrubs, and trees; architecture, fountains, and ornaments". Her paintings on display include, Pink-Pink, Day of Palm and Roses, Laguna Lilies, Sunflowers Wax and Wane, Flowerfield Capistrano, Sphere in Lavender, An August Sunflower, Mother's Day Eve, Tomato Cage, Orbiting Magnolia and Rocket Cypress, Cacti in Terra Cotta Canyons, Barb's Garden and Parkstrip Tulips. Carolyn's paintings depict beautiful and colorful California gardens. The artist's eye for texture and detail is amazing.

Sarah Waggoner
Artist Sarah Waggoner of Berkeley, California uses non-traditional painting formats to explore new approaches. She was inspired by Dutch genre painters who created complex flora and fauna arrangements against black background depicting intimate metaphors of worldly existence. "By layering and interweaving natural forms, creating levels of transparency and opacity, I try to examine the power and complexity of forms found outside my door. Mounted on lattice or strung like old tablecloths from a clothesline, the format of the larger paintings also reflects the garden and the place floral patterns hold in our culture". Sarah's subject matter is the day-to-day landscape of her own backyard. She challenges herself to look at commonplace things in new ways within the physical and psychological confines of the garden. As an artist, she constantly re-teaches herself to see, draw and experience. Sarah, who teaches elementary school in Berkeley, says she hopes children experience the fun of doing art.

Sarah Waggoner's work includes, Trumpet Vine II, Morning Glories, In the Garden XV, In the Garden III, In the Garden IV, In the Garden XI, In the Garden X, In the Garden XIV, In the Garden XIII, Feast of the Gods II, and Fast of the Gods IV.

Sandra Hemsworth, Gallery Curator, selected these artists with three different perspectives on gardens. Analyzing her selection, she said, "Carolyn Lord is a more traditional watercolorist, which in a sense her work creates an easier entrance into the show. Often people who do not have a lot of experience looking at art tend to look for the familiar. I brought in Tracy DeCamp because she uses a common medium, oil on canvas, but takes it a step further adding collage, and a tight intense pallet and composition that brings you in closer contact with nature. You can almost smell the lilies in her work. Sarah Waggoner's work has a more ephemeral feel. She uses less common materials and technique, painting on paper and a nexus of transparent fabric, hanging her work on a common garden material redwood lattice. My ultimate intention with every exhibit is to educate the viewer in new ways of creative thinking".

Garden to Gallery brings the gardens to the Olive Hyde Gallery. To view this "must see" exhibit, visit Olive Hyde Art Gallery, 123 Washington Blvd., Fremont. The show which began April 2nd continues through Saturday, May 8th, 2004. Gallery hours are Thurs- Sun 12-5 p.m. For details, contact the gallery at (510) 791- 4357.

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