First Friday, April 3: Spring Art Hop Artist’s Reception (open late ’til 8:30pm)
Hop to thump for an artist’s reception, wine, delicious dessert bites from The Bittersweet Kitchen and live music by Vested at neighboring Karen Bandy Studio.
Cupping: Sunday, April 19, 1:30pm – 2:30pm
What’s up in the cup? Come join us on a journey of the senses, as we discover the ins and outs of tasting coffee.
ART: Amy Royce Encaustic Mixed Media Paintings
Local artist Amy Royce explores communication, body language and non-verbal expression in the series of encaustic mixed-media paintings on exhibit throughout April. Encaustic is an ancient technique using beeswax melted with resin and pigment to form the paint, which is applied hot. Although Royce describes encaustic’s possibilities for luminous color, variety of texture, and depth as “quite limitless,” the organic, fleshy textures of these paintings evoke what she calls a “skin of experience.”
This series represents her “expression of the body, where an increasingly complex environment influences movement, emotion and communication within us,” Royce says. “These forces and our reactions to them shape us over a lifetime. I reflect on these rhythms and changes as I paint.”
“The waxy surface becomes skin, tissue; shapes of bone and sinew symbolize stability, structure, connection; emotions surge through texture and color,” she says. “Layers come and go, eroding and building a complex portrait of who we are and hope for who we could be.”
Royce does not attempt to conceal the evidence of the process. “Marks, divots and scratches on the wax surface are clues,” she explains. “Textures form a ‘skin’ of experience, as individual as each of us. Scraping, pushing, pulling the wax around with heat and carving tools reveal the mystery and allure of the paint. Spaces expand and contract when concealed once again beneath floating translucent layers of color. A harmonic tension begins.”
Royce graduated Summa Cum Laude with BA in Art with a painting emphasis from Humboldt State University in Arcata, California. In 2006, she received a scholarship to Anderson Ranch Arts Center to study with Harmony Hammond. More recently, her work was selected by Judy Chicago and awarded the Artistic Merit Prize for the 20th Anniversary Women’s Works Exhibit in Illinois. An avid 1940s era swing dancer, she enjoys the translation of sound, rhythm, and lead-and-follow into a conversation without words.
More About Encaustic Painting by Amy Royce:
The word encaustic comes from the Greek word, enkaustikos, meaning “to heat” or “to burn.” Beeswax melted with resin and pigment forms the paint, which is applied hot. Each layer of wax must be fused with heat to the layer beneath it. The method of painting with wax came from ancient Greece, where shipbuilders painted the hulls of their ships to seal, protect and decorate the surfaces. This led artists to use encaustic for easel painting and decoration of clay and marble sculptures, and on to the ancient Fayum portraits of Egyptian mummy casings. The medium was lost in obscurity from the seventh century until the twentieth century, when artists such as Diego Rivera, Arthur Dove, Karl Zerbe and finally Jasper Johns began to revive it. More and more contemporary painters and sculptors are
experimenting with encaustic in a range of styles and techniques due to increasingly available resources and materials. The possibilities for luminous color, variety of texture, and depth are quite limitless.
Caring for an encaustic painting is simple. Like any fine art, encaustics should be kept out of direct sunlight. Dust gently with a soft cloth and handle with care. The unvarnished surface is very stable and continues to cure and harden over time.