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What do artists do all day?

It’s a busy time here, and because what artists do all day seems like a bit of a mystery, I thought I’d invite you to get a glimpse behind the scenes.

I’ve been creating a new course for artists called the Four Foundations for a Thriving Art Practice. My collaborator, the Seattle artist Sarah Guthrie and I conceived of this 5-week class to help artists build sustainable, fulfilling art practices, and there is no other course exactly like this one out there. I’m really proud of this work because I know it can make a difference in a lot of artists’ lives. The course launches on February 23rd.

Last week, I had an excellent conversation with Sonya Pfeiffer, director of Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art, about the thought process behind the work in my exhibit, Hold us in the light. You can watch our chat here on my blog. View the works and shop the exhibition here.

For the last year, I’ve had an installation/video project I’ve been thinking about (something on the scale of Paper Mountain) and I finally got the ball rolling. The project is inspired by the effects of flood waters, and I am currently in the early prototyping phase and working on grant proposals for funding. Given the scale of the project, I’m probably a couple of years out on exhibiting this, so stay tuned!

I’ve also been continuing to develop my painting and drawing skills by working from life and refining my knowledge of color by doing color studies. In retrospect, it seems that’s what I typically do in the winter and in between larger projects.

I have a favor to ask. If you know anyone who would be interested, would you forward this post to them or let them know about my work? Or if you feel comfortable, would you forward their email to me and I’ll take it from there? Word of mouth is one of the best way that I connect with new collectors. I really appreciate your support!

The field you think you own, oil and acrylic on canvas, 40 x 60 inches

Conversation with Sonya Pfeiffer

Sonya Pfeiffer is owner and director of Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in Charlotte, NC.

From the gallery:

Jessica Singerman Artist Talk

Join us in the studio with Jessica Singerman as she takes viewers behind the thought process and intention in her new series, Hold Us in the Light.

View the works we’re talking about and shop the exhibition here.

 

Creative Detours

Creative Detours: an exhibition of paintings by Jessica Singerman at the Forsyth County Public Library
January 1 – March 31, 2021

(January 11, 2021, Winston-Salem, NC) Award-winning painter Jessica Singerman announces her exhibit of paintings entitled CREATIVE DETOURS, opening at the Forsyth County Public Library on January 1 and continuing through March 31, 2021.

In this collection of paintings, viewers will notice that some are more impressionistic and some have more recognizable elements – the work hovers between abstraction and representation. In this way, Singerman explores the way things look (shapes, colors, line, edges, etc…) and the way things feel (hot sunlight, cold wind, the smell of leaves, birdsong, etc…).

Singerman’s work is inspired by the poetry of nature, color and light in the landscape, seasons, and the passing of time. Says Singerman, “All of our senses are awakened when we spend time outside. The rhythm of steps while hiking, the whir and clicks on a bike ride, the changing shapes of light and shadow between trees, the sound of birdsong—the memory of all these impacts on my senses feeds into my process of abstraction. I love to explore my experiences in nature through the elements of color, shape, line and composition.”

Viewers may recognize Singerman’s paintings from the billboard featuring her work on Route 52. She was one of the 2020/2021 Triad region ArtPop Street Gallery winners.

The artwork in the exhibition can be purchased at www.jessicasingerman.com.

About the artist: Jessica Singerman lived alternatively in France and the United States during her early life. Singerman earned her BA with Highest Honors in 2002 from the College of William & Mary, Virginia, and her Masters of Fine Arts in 2004 from the University of Delaware while on a fellowship. Her award-winning paintings and drawings are exhibited and collected internationally. Singerman lives and works in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

FORSYTH COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY, including CREATIVE DETOURS, by Jessica Singerman, January 1 – March 31. 660 W 5th St, Winston-Salem, NC 27101, www.forsyth.cc/library/, 336.703.2665

Find this article on YES! Weekly. Thank you to publisher Charles Womack and to YES! Weekly for the write up!

High up in its windy nest, oil and acrylic on canvas, 40 x 40 inches

Happy New Year and 2020 year in review

Happy New Year! 2021 is off to a good start… I’ve had a chance to get a couple of rides and runs in, and I’m ready to get this party started.

2020 was my second year of running a small business, and while this had its challenges, it turned out to be a good year for me and my family. Thank you so much for your support during the last year. Thank you for reading my writing, following me on Facebook and Instagram, sending me kind messages, buying my work, and sharing my work with your friends and family… all of it helps keep me motivated and supports my artistic practice. Here are some of the things your support made possible in 2020:

My work was selected to be shown in the Prism small group exhibition at Gallery C3 in Charlotte  at the beginning of the year.

I made some wellness videos in the spring. When COVID hit the US and lockdowns started, I wanted to share ways to relax and re-center yourself with yoga, drawing and watercolor.

Since I wasn’t able to teach in person, I created my first online course Little Watercolor Square. I learned a lot about the process and really enjoyed it. Thankfully I ended up doing more online teaching and coaching this year, and that has allowed me to reach more people and help more artists improve their skills and find their voices.

ArtPop Street gallery awarded me a billboard with my work on it! Thank you ArtPop Street Gallery, Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County, and Lamar Advertising for making this possible.

I won a placement of my work at PTI airport for a year starting in July. This led to my first five-figure sale of a single painting.

Innovation Quarter commissioned me to paint a mural along the Long Branch trail in Winston-Salem this summer. That mural was featured on the front page of the Winston-Salem Journal and I was interviewed about the painting process with WXLV, our local abc station.

The podcast Terrific Tips for Business invited me on for a conversation about running a business as an artist amidst a year of craziness.

My solo exhibition Hold us in the light opened at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in November, featuring paintings I made this year. You can see it till mid February.

I donated a portion of my sales to Yadkin Riverkeeper, Second Harvest Food bank and the NAACP. Teaming up with local nonprofits and being able to help in a meaningful way has been one of my favorite parts of running my own business.

Thank you for helping make all of this possible! Let’s make 2021 a great year.

Solo exhibit at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art

Jessica Singerman - hold us in the light

On November 6th 2020, my newest solo show “Hold us in the light” opens at Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in Charlotte, NC. Read on to find out about the work in this exhibition.

There will be free timed entry for this opening. Reserve your time slot here.
Note, my exhibit coincides with the “Home” exhibit, so the reservation link will take you to that show’s reservation page.  

From Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art:

Join us for an exhibition of intimate, responsive work by Jessica Singerman. In a significant departure from her work that celebrates nature, color and light in the landscape and the passing of time, Singerman embraces personal questions around her work and how it relates to the pressing societal issues of today.

Artist Statement:

At the end of spring 2020 when there was a swelling of anger and sadness amidst protests in the US, I wondered what – as an artist – I should be doing in response to what was happening around me. In times of turmoil, I have often questioned the validity of my work, and with practice I’ve learned that it is in those challenging times that the work of an artist becomes especially important, both for the artist and for the audience. However as a white artist, I was unsure of what was appropriate for the direction of my work. It seemed disingenuous to make politically charged paintings when my current body of work dealt with an entirely different subject matter. How could I make work that was culturally relevant yet stayed true to the artistic concerns I’ve pursued for years?

The morning of June 1st I made drawings of a table and chairs in our screened-in porch, a nod to some Richard Diebenkorn paintings of a single chair in an interior. Later that day in the studio, I decided to make a painting using one of those drawings as a reference. This painting was quiet and contemplative. I made another painting and another, all evocative of human presence, and each one a play of color and geometry and composition. In these paintings, through the careful arrangement of shapes and color, I envision creating space for conversations – hopefully the kind of exchanges that bring real profound understanding. Is this too much to want for my work? Maybe, but making art is in itself a hopeful act, and so it helps me feel optimistic.

Get a preview of the work in this studio visit.

Interview with Terrific Tips for Business is live!

Artist Jessica Singerman and CJ Howard interview

Last week artist CJ Howard and I had a great conversation about running a business as an artist during these crazy times. Listen or watch for insights on what it’s like to make a living as an artist and for plenty of tips for up and coming artists.

Watch the video below.

Listen to the podcast on any platform. Find all the links here.

Enjoy!

Looking for art & creativity coaching? Learn about what we can do together here.

Art at work helps boost business

“The Field You Think You Own” in a shared workspace. Click this image to find it in the shop.

As if we needed more reasons to own art….

It has actually been scientifically proven that having original art in workspaces boosts productivity, increases creativity and reduces stress in addition to a host of other benefits. So in addition to making your workspace look amazing, artwork will actually help you run a better – arguably more profitable business.

Here are a few ways this works:

Creativity begets creativity

Does it seem counterintuitive to spend money on something that could potentially distract a worker’s attention? Well the truth is that because art makes for a generally more upbeat space, it helps make happier workers, who are therefore more productive. Deutsche Bank owns the biggest collection of corporate art in the world and even hosts artist talks so their staff can engage with artists. This opens up broader views into socio-political aesthetics and eventually helping generate new ideas that can be used with clients. In other words creativity begets creativity.

Given the automatization of well, everything, creativity will soon be our most important asset as humans. It’s one of the things that differentiates us from AI right?

Where to install corporate art?

In a lobby, art makes a statement and sets the tone for everyone who enters the building. In boardrooms or other meeting areas, artwork can help break the ice or stimulate ideas and conversation.

Exhibiting art in the work place helps shape the branding and character of a company for those who work within the company, partners and prospective clients. Art improves the culture in a shared space by creating an optimistic and inspiring environment.

Tax Benefits

In some cases, original artwork can be considered “furnishings” and can therefore be tax deductible. I would recommend talking to your CPA to check this in your region though because I’m no expert.

Art Leasing

If your company is looking to support local living artists, but not in a position to buy original artwork, then leasing art may be a good option. In this scenario, art is rented for a monthly fee, allowing you to try some artwork for size or to change the look of the office. Learn more about renting art from me here.

I love these concepts – not just because I’m an artist – but because I think high quality art should be accessible to as many people as possible. Not only does it add beauty, but it inspires new ways of thinking and ways to engage with others.

What do you think about art in the work place? Let me know! Email or call me at (336) 283-0185. I’d love to hear from you!

References:

Forbes

The Guardian

University of Exeter

Interview with WXLV abc45

A couple weeks ago I chatted with Carol Andrews, station host at WXLV abc45, about my mural project along the Longbranch trail in Winston-Salem, NC. We talked about how the project came about with Innovation Quarter and what it was like painting outdoors along the trail. The interview just went live, and you can watch it HERE on the station site.

Thank you to Carol Andrews and Lori Bates for the opportunity and for their excellent work on this story!

 

What’s in a name?

People often ask me about my painting titles, “how do I come up with them?”or “what do they mean?”
Well I have a sort of system for titling works that don’t have an obvious name (unlike my installation Paper Mountain that was named just what it was). I keep a little notebook for title ideas. When I need to title a painting, I look through the notebook for inspiration. If none of the ideas feel right for the work, my ritual is to pull out a stack of Mary Oliver poetry books and to read until I notice words or snippets that resonate with me. I write them down and then riff off those or combine them to make my new titles. In the end I pick titles that I hope will invite curiosity, thinking and dreaming.

Below you’ll see “Among the weeds and other blossoming things,” one painting that I named using some Mary Oliver poetry and my little book of ideas. This painting is 40×30 inches, oil and acrylic on canvas, and available from my shop where you’ll find other paintings with names that are hopefully as evocative.

Among the Weeds and Other Blossoming Things, oil and acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 inches
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