I am proud to be included in a Group Show at the Bridgeport Art Center with some of the most accomplished artists working in the medium of encaustic in the Chicago region.
Encaustic 2017: Rebirth of an Ancient Medium
July 21- September 8, 2017
Opening reception: July 21, 7-10PM
4th Floor Gallery, Bridgeport Art Center
Encaustic painting is one of the oldest painting techniques, dating back to the ancient Greeks who used wax to caulk ship hulls. They later added pigment to decorate the ships. Perhaps the best known of all encaustic work are the Fayum funeral portraits painted in the 1st through 3rd centuries A.D. by Greek painters in Egypt. Affixed to the deceased mummy prior to burial, these highly realistic portraits were designed to preserve the image of the dead. Many of those portraits survive today as the wax protected the images from moisture and decay. The 20th century saw a rebirth of encaustic on a major scale. Jasper Johns used encaustic in his Target and American Flag paintings, among others.
In Greek, the word “encaustic” means to “heat or burn in”. Encaustic consists of natural bees wax and damar resin (crystallized tree sap). Heat is used throughout the process, from melting the beeswax and resin to fusing the layers of wax. The medium can be used alone for its transparency or adhesive qualities or used pigmented. The medium is melted to a rigid, porous surface such as unprimed wood panels, and applied with a natural bristle brush. Each layer is then reheated with a heat gun, butane torch or tacking iron to fuse it first to the substrate and then to the previous layer.
Improvements in heating techniques have made the use of encaustic more accessible, and today it is gaining popularity with artists around the world. This exhibition consists of work by a select group of artists in the Chicago/Midwest area who use encaustic in some of their work, whether two- or three-dimensionally.
Dan Addington,Alicia Forestall-Boehm, Cat Crotchett, Helen Dannelly, Shelley Gilchrist, Carol Anderson Hamilton, Jeffrey Hirst, Cindy Lesperance, Jane Michalski, Ahavani Mullen, Sarah Rehmer, Paul Rinaldi,Michele Thrane, VA de Pintor, Kathleen Waterloo