2022 Tidelands Plein Air Event

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TAG Art History Minis

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Art History Minis are a regular feature on TAG’s Instagram and Facebook pages. If all the gerbils show up to work, we’ll get them posted here shortly after they air on social media. They are posted in reverse order, newest to oldest. Click on an image to learn more about the art and the artist. Impress your friends and family.

TAG Exhibit | Catherine Kauffman

Women and Children: Moments in Time

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Catherine (Cate) Kauffman is a resident of the Northern Neck near Burgess. Growing up with an artistic Mother, it was natural for Cate to have a pencil or paintbrush in her hand. As a teenager she was selected along with a small group of her peers to study with the resident artists at the National Gallery of Fine Art and the National Portrait Gallery, and her love of portraiture evolved. She developed a great fondness for the compositions of Edgar Degas but loved the brushwork and palette of John Singer Sargent. She studied further at VCU, graduating from Radford College in Journalism. She is an accomplished painter also of still life, landscapes and paints en plein air.

Kauffman now teaches at the RAL Art Center in Kilmarnock and is a regular exhibitor there. She was in a two-artist show at the Stewart Gallery in May 2020. She has also had work featured in the Xanadu Art Gallery Catalog. Cate is a member of the Oil Painters of America and The Portrait Society of America. She has recently begun accepting commissions for private collectors. Please see her website at http://ckauffman.faso.com.

ABOUT THE EXHIBIT

“When invited to present a one-artist show here, I was thrilled to be asked specifically to present a show of figurative work. I believe that art should have a purpose of telling a story, not necessarily just be a pretty picture on the wall – although if it can do both, all the better. Figurative work does this in a way that is unique as it humanizes history. It tells its own truth.”


As she reflects on the historical and possible future restrictions on women and children, she feels privileged to have the life she has had. Her paintings in this show are snapshots of her life, her children’s life and the lives of friends and their families, telling a story of our society and revealing a level of truth in a way she hopes viewers will relate to.


Artist and art show juror, Susan Fisher, will provide an oil painting blending and value change demonstration for sky and water at Tappahannock Artists’ Guild gallery, Saturday July 9 at 10 am. There is a powerful blending technique for creating gradation in sky and water that Susan will teach us.  She will discuss the way sky is generally darker at the top of the work and lighter near the horizon.  More importantly, she will show you a good way to control that change in hue and value so that you can make it your own. 


MEET THE JUROR

Susan M. Fisher
Art Painter, Artist, Teacher

With an impressionistic dance between sketch and realism, Susan M. Fisher paints dream images and realty. Focusing on the feeling of living, Susan creates many of her images from the mind’s eye, taking the viewer to places they have never been, but have likely felt. She has graciously agreed to serve as the Juror for the show.

Barbara Collins: The Artist At Work

Barbara Collins at work

At almost 96, Barbara M. Collins has painted across two centuries. An Orange County, Virginia resident, she has traveled the world and with her watercolors, she has explored its wonders and its secrets. “Once our children went away to college, my husband and I signed up for an oil painting class. I went on and took another class. And another.”

After raising four children, she was eager to travel. She combined that interest when she saw an advertisement for a five-week painting trip in Umbria, Italy. “We stayed in a former monastery, painted every other day, and toured the countryside. The teacher was from Bristol, Virginia. They drove us into the hills in a van to paint, complete with picnic lunches. At the end of the trip, they invited me to visit their daughter in Rome.”

Blessing, Provence

La Romita was the first of a dozen painting trips where Collins learned how to convey light and shadows to evoke the unique character of a location by painting en plein air. “My favorite trip was Greece. Carolyn led two of those trips. A veteran of 20 years, she knew the islands and took us to tiny harbor towns.”

By that time, Collins’s paintings were being accepted into the Virginia Watercolor Society annual show. The third show acceptance results in your being honored as ‘an artist member’ of the association. Before each show opens, the juror describes her/his selections from slides. Collins remembers one juror’s comment about her painting of a friend’s Vermont house and orchard. “This painting is just pure, beautiful watercolor.”

“Once our children went away to college,
my husband and I signed up for an oil painting class.
I went on and took another class. And another.”

Barbara M. Collins

“I loved the group. No meetings, a week of classes before the annual show and one big awards banquet. My paintings were accepted for the shows at Virginia Tech, Bristol and Abingdon.”

Once Collins moved to Virginia, she worked as a school librarian. A founding member of the Central Virginia Watercolor Society, she prepared the newsletters and helped organize local shows. The group drew artists from the Harrisonburg and Charlottesville area.

A great fan of the Olympics, Collins traveled to five summer Olympics, including Moscow, Barcelona and Korea, where she began to create travel postcards as presents for friends and family.

In 2014, the Art Center in Orange published a book of her watercolor postcards that depicted Christmas scenes around the county, paintings that spanned her thirty years as a resident there.

Her paintings have won prizes in Harrisonburg and Fredericksburg. But Collins insists that the friendships from her painting career are the true gold. “Nancy Browning and I carried paintings in my little Subaru over to the Blue Ridge school shows. Millie Lane invited us to lunch and to paint by her pier at Lake of the Woods. Jean Dobie, a nationally recognized watercolorist, and I painted in Provence.” Collins describes those days as ‘work.’ “Jean wouldn’t even break for lunch. I would go and get us both sandwiches. She could paint two or three paintings a day and go back to the B & B and paint some more.”

Collins last painted with the Blue Ridge Artists in Culpeper, VA where her paintings sold in fundraising auctions for $350 to $600.

Because Collins celebrates her 96th birthday in June, the TAG show is priced to reflect her ‘downsizing’ of her home studio. Her framed paintings will be offered at $96 each and matted paintings at two for $96.

Still in her own home, planting tomato seeds and watching for bluebirds, she says she feels better than she’s ever felt. Behind her, her first heart attack lastAugust. Ahead, whatever adventure lies in store.

Her latest show opens at The Prince Street gallery in Tappahannock on Thursday May 26 with a reception from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and runs through July 5.