February 8th // Tawnya Corrente + Claire Smith + Sarah Day-Short

IMG_3894.JPG

Featured in our gallery for the month of February is the work of Oklahoma artists Tawnya Rene CorrenteSarah Day-Short, and Claire Smith.

Join us Thursday, February 8th from 6-9pm for the exhibition opening and artist reception. Or join us the following night for our opening during the 2nd Friday Live on the Plaza from 6-10pm. This exhibit runs through March 4th. 

Learn more about these artists at:
http://tawnyacorrente.blogspot.com/
https://www.sarahdayshortart.com/
https://www.instagram.com/claire.stardust/

GILDED.jpg

TAWNYA CORRENTE // ARTIST INTERVIEW 

What is your medium and process? 

Can my hands turn it into something? Can I glue it to something else, or squish it into a shape, or throw paint at it? That's my medium & my process. I just jump on in & see if it will work. 

Where are you from?

I am born & raised here in Oklahoma!

How did you get started?

I have been creating all the things for as long as I can remember. 

But I first began painting about 8 years ago. I was having a reoccurring dream in which I was painting, & building a wall with all the art I had created. My husband urged me to grab a brush & get going! (I think because he was tired of hearing me go on & on about that dream!)  

POPPIES crop.jpg

How would you describe your latest body of work?

I call all my flowers, lady flowers. At first it was to be funny, "My lady flower... ha!" But the inspiration for  these new paintings came from the loss (& the healing from that loss) of one of the most important women in my life, my grandmother... & learning to navigate through a world without her. 

I feel like these florals show the femininity, fragility & strength inside me. 

What inspires you?

I am a sucker for some color. I love it! I can see a color, hear a song lyric or even just a memory will inspire me. 

There is a piece in this collection that is from a memory of when I was a kid, making the beds & singing with my granny. It hit me one day & bam! There was a painting. 

No.40 bouquet.jpg

What is one of your favorite pieces of art, film, or literature? 

Does the floor of Jackson Pollocks studio count? Seriously, it's amazing... Google that shit. 

I'm also obsessed, I mean OBSESSED with Bobbie Burgers piece titled Gravitational Pull. Oy. So good! 

What are your goals for the future?

To keep making art. I want be that cool old lady that you see covered in paint & clay with brushes tucked in her hair, feeding her cats & tending her garden. You always want to sit and chat with chic, right? You just KNOW she has some stories!

What advice do you have to artists?

When you are passionate about what you are creating, it shows... find that passion & jump in!  

unnamed-12.jpg

SARAH DAY-SHORT // ARTIST INTERVIEW

What is your medium and process? 

I use an acrylic wash method building up layers of paint, pouring & using spray bottles to get drips & blobs. I then layer gold, silver or copper leaf over the top painting the adhesive on with a brush.

Where are you from?

OKC

How did you get started?

I was always drawing or making friendship bracelets or easy bake creations as a kid. In college I thought I could be an interior designer but soon realized I didn’t have the artistic freedom that I needed. I graduated from UCO in 2010 with a printmaking emphasis. I joined the women’s art group FRINGE shortly after. FRINGE gave me the opportunity to explore my style & different media with a plethora of small group shows. I moved away from small scale highly detailed work & loosened my style with large scale colorful paintings. They started without any real concept & were purely a creative release. I then started thinking about color theory & where I could take this work if used certain colors with more intention. The metal leaf came when I was craving some kind of detail and a way to reflect light. The metallics really tie my work together now.   

unnamed-11.jpg

How would you describe your latest body of work? 

This body of work is titled “The Warmth”. It’s a small group of paintings with fiery colors & deepness - a light comes from within. Inspired by some of my favorite music - the bass bump in your chest, the lights at live shows, the colors you feel when you close your eyes. The metallic details represent the sounds as well as the push & pull of the lights. The titles clue the audience in on some of the music that has inspired me.

What inspires you?

Art is all around us & anything can be an inspiration if you let it. It’s interesting to create just for the sake of creating & then be inspired by the creation itself. The pieces in this particular series were inspired by music & light. 

What is one of your favorite pieces of art, film, or literature?

In keeping with the music theme of this body of work, my favorite kind of music is instrumental rock. An Explosions in the Sky concert started this whole idea with the way they build up & build up to a climax in their songs. 

unnamed-10.jpg

What are your goals for the future?

My passion lies in making custom art. I love creating something that will inspire & bring joy to someone in their home. My goal is to make custom art my focus & create pieces that speak to clients’ styles & stories. 

What advice do you have to artists?

Don’t be constrained by a concept or anyone’s views or ideas of what art should be. Create simply to create. Allow yourself to go out of your comfort zone & find what works for you.

 

IMG_3877.jpg

CLAIRE SMITH // ARTIST INTERVIEW

 

What is your medium and process?

i use mostly acrylic on canvas and wood panels, sometimes pieces of reclaimed wood doors. as for my process, it’s honestly pretty sporadic and erratic. i never really force art. i usually paint when the desire comes to me. sometimes i finish a painting in one sitting, and in that case the painting has a sense of immediacy, it reflects how i feel in that moment. but other times i spend more time on a painting, coming back to it after a few days, or even months. these end up with more layers of paint and emotion poured into them.

Where are you from?

okc, ok. i’ve lived here my whole life, so the plaza district naturally became like a second home to me :,)

How did you get started?

i’ve been creating art since i was a child. growing up, i had loads of support from my parents, my teachers, and from my aunt, Linda Allen, a professional artist out of Tulsa who has always been an inspiration to me.

IMG_3881.jpg

How would you describe your latest body of work?

i have recently been focused on creating emotional abstract paintings. when i was younger and less educated, i didn’t really understand or appreciate abstract art. but after experimenting with it myself i’ve realized it isn’t as easy as it appears sometimes. i love to see how color, line, value, texture, and shape interact with each other within a piece. i want to create pieces that will elicit responses from the viewer, even if the way the viewer feels towards a piece is nothing like how i felt making it. i think that’s beautiful.

What inspires you?

other creators. i am most inspired by my favorite artists, composers, musicians, writers, philosophers, film makers. i often paint while listening to music i love, whether that be 17th century baroque, 60s avant garde, or 80s synthpop.

What is one of your favorite pieces of art, film, or literature?

Voltaire’s Candide changed my life about this time last year. i had been feeling really lost in the world, and lost in a search for purpose. this novella helped me realize that i don’t need to have it all figured out right now. Candide experienced suffering. he saw the brutality and hypocrisy of human nature, and he saw through the naivete of his philosopher friend who insisted that this world was the best of all possible worlds, even though there were obvious flaws. but Candide found a way to live contentedly and come to peace with life. rather than excusing the wrongdoings of the human race, he accepted the world as it is, flaws and all, and decided to focus on what he could directly affect. the message Candide gives us in the conclusion is this: we must cultivate our garden. it can be taken literally or figuratively. it’s okay to focus on the smaller things that make us happy, because they remind us of what we’re living for. it’s okay if i don’t know my life purpose at age 17! instead i’ll pick up a paintbrush and focus on something that i can do right now. we can’t save the world if we’re weighed down by the future, or worn down by worry and hate and fear. i think we all need a reminder of that sometimes, and Candide was my reminder.

IMG_3878.jpg

What are your goals for the future?

really all i want to do is learn, experience, create. the arts and the ability to gain and share knowledge, these are what keep me both grounded and passionate.

What advice do you have to artists?

do what you love and stay true to yourself -- even if that means only the current version of yourself. i think the self is fluid and formless and temporary. try not to get discouraged if a piece is more difficult than you thought it would be, or if it doesn’t turn out like you imagined, or if you end up disliking it. so many times i have created a piece that i felt represented me, but when looking at it later, i found it alien, as if a stranger had made it. but those works represent who i was in that moment, or at a different time in my life, so it’s
okay. we all change and our art changes too.