I had been very ill and had only hours to live, I was saved by a brilliant surgeon but I was faced with a very long recovery.
During that time my sister invited me to an art event to lift my spirits and encourage my healing.
This VIP event and the events that followed are why and how I became and artist. I know that collectors love and buy the art, but they also love the story. Here is my story.
As I entered the ballroom the beautiful and mysterious women of Itzchak Tarkay surrounded me. The jewel tone colors of the paintings and the closed eyes of the subjects lit a spark deep within me.
I felt as if had broken out of my shell. That evening something had taken hold of my visual imagination and has only grown each and every day since.
Tarkay joined us for dinner that night and we spoke of many things. We laughed, shared stories, and had fun for hours. He touched my heart as well as the heart of my service dog Lulu. (She is even smiling.)
During that weekend we met many artists but it was Tarkays’ humor that I remember.
I offered him one of my Arabian stallions.
He let that pass as we continued our conversation, a few minutes later suddenly he asked me the dimensions of the horse.
“Why do you need to know?” I asked.
He replied “ So I can see if the horse will fit in my elevator so I can bring him up to my apartment.”
“But the horse will eat your furniture, “ I exclaimed.
“ If I have a horse I don”t need any furniture” he replied matter-of-factly.
As I said we laughed and continued to laugh throughout the evening and the following day at the auction. Although I must admit , I believe he truly wanted one of my horses in place of his furniture!
Tarkays’ passing truly saddened me and I knew I had to paint him. I sketched out a picture I had seen of him standing under a statue of a man with an umbrella that David Najar had posted on social media. This was a picture of an artist under the art and it was brilliant. . This picture reminded me of one the Tarkay paintings my sister had purchased of a nude in shades of gray with one red stripe.
I looked at my sketch on canvas for a month not knowing how to paint or why I would ever have the nerve to paint the Maestro.
I began my career as an artist with this painting and by practicing my craft daily, with thirst, determination and the desire to continually improve. That painting is now in Israel.
I have always been influenced by light and color. As an optician I studied how the visual perception can affect not only our mood but our ability to learn.
My continued fascination with light was fueled by my love of nature. I was an Arabian and Miniature horse breeder after retiring from my optical business.
There is a gentleness in the eye of a horse that leaves me without words.
I enjoyed getting my hands in the earth and cultivating the land and my spirit.
The bright sunrises on my tractor and the vibrant sunsets beyond the barn; the color from nature and the work of farming ; and caring for the 12 horses, was both exhilarating and exhausting.
God is the original and most creative artist of all.
I start each day now , in my art studio with a pallet in my hand, overlooking the lake, trees and visiting wildlife. Each day is a gift and I count my blessings. I am content seeing the smiles on the faces of those who collect my art, I smile creating each painting.
My work is raw emotion and free from any rules. I have not had training or lessons. The light and colors from my life are now in my work as an artist.
I paint with acrylic, oils, and multimedia. I paint on canvas, wood and clothing.
My work is vibrant and textured just like my life. I feel that the brush, palette knife , chopstick or whatever I get my hands on lead the way. The art creates itself and guides me .
I start with and idea and let go. The painting will take on a life of its own, and that is a freedom I feel passionate about.
I find this true in my cracked distressed work that reveals the beauty in the flaws created by this medium.
We all have scars. Some scars are physical and some are emotional. Each scar has saved us or healed us , it is said that it is through the cracks that the light gets in. I feel honored to share my story through my art and show the beauty in the defects. Take a breath and let the light in, I hope my work reminds you of that always.
Now it's painting that fuels my energy and heals my soul, I could not imagine my life any other way.
I have donated paintings to organizations such as Habitat for Humanity , Seed Food and Wine Festival ,Temple Beth Torah ,and Kids in Distress .
I have a strong following on Linkedin 18k+ and other Social Media.
David Najar has become a dear friend and has encouraged and inspired me to work harder and take that second look at a finished painting and see if I can make it even better. I understand that was very similar to the advice Tarkay shared with him. I feel blessed knowing them both.
View my full collection and the different categories, expand the pictures to show the details . My website Gloriageneart.com Gloria Gene