12 Steamboat artists showcase perspectives on the seasons
December 29, 2011
Steamboat Springs — Grace Curé was painting long before she picked up a paintbrush or mixed watercolors. As an esthetician, Curé said her canvas has always been the eyelids, brows and skin of her clients.
But she always wanted to be a painter, so in 1997, she began taking classes from local artist Joan Hoffman. She found that watercolors and eye shadows have a lot in common.
"I think when I put makeup on someone's eyes, there's a similar experience that goes on there," she said. "Or when I do an eyebrow wax, the brow becomes my work of art and I want it to be beautiful; it just makes me feel good. And it's the same with art — it just makes me feel good."
In 2010, one of her beauty clients surprised her by asking to buy one of her Yampa Valley-inspired landscapes on display in her office.
"I never thought I was a very good painter. I was stunned," she said.
Relatively fresh to the local painting community, Curé said she feels like a young artist among the 11 other painters showing work in the "Local Painters Celebrate the Seasons" exhibition presented by the Steamboat Springs Arts Council.
The show, on display through mid-January at the Depot Art Center, showcases four works — one for each season — from each of the artists. The lineup includes Curé, Cher Dooley, Leslie Lovejoy, Cindy Wither, Annie Meyer, Sharon Pace, Dona Steele, Gigi Walker, Vickie Rosenzweig, Lane Schrock, Barb Ross and Carol Jean.
"There's so much experience here," Curé said Wednesday as she circled the well-lit gallery. "I have a lot of favorite artists in here."
An artist will be on hand at the gallery from noon to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays to answer questions.
"It is a great chance to speak with the artists about their work and to engage with the exhibition," Arts Council artistic director Park Myers said. "The show demonstrates each artist's diverse and individual interpretations of the seasons, while still feeling cohesive and wholesome."
While mediums and styles vary from pastels and realism to oil paints and impressionism, the cohesive elements come from a shared experience of the Yampa Valley seasons. Aspens show up in several works signifying the fall, and apple blossoms dance through the spring works.
Curé said she doesn't do her best work when she tries to adhere to realism. She paints sometimes from memory, and her mountains sometimes become purple or the snow turns pink.
"You don't really see this in nature, but the colors are there," she said.
"When I let it flow, that's when it works best."
To reach Nicole Inglis, call 970-871-4204 or email ninglis@SteamboatToday.com
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