This is Life Exhibition features Amy James with Laura Gates, Dianne Douglas, Nicole Duet, Frank Hamrick, and Morris Taft Thomas
An Opening Reception with artists' talks will be held Friday, April 12, 2019 from 5-8 pm at Ruston Artisans Gallery, 203 W Alabama Ave in beautiful, historic downtown Ruston. The Exhibition will run from March 27 -May 24, 2019. The gallery is open Wednesday and Thursday from 10am-5pm and Friday from 10 am-4 pm.
Free & Open to the public.O'duerves and refreshments will be served.
Amy James is available for commissions.
Amy James's photographs can only be described as transcendent and natural. She prefers to shoot while illuminating her subjects using only natural light and environments. This practice helps her to capture the sitter as well as the viewer in her lens. She shoots primarily in black and white, the traditional way, using silver and film. She was trained as a painter but was drawn to the darkroom upon learning it could create as much of a challenge as the empty canvas. James studied at LSU under Michael Crespo and Robert Hausey with Thomas Neff, her photography professor, perhaps being her greatest influence and mentor. James exhibits in many venues throughout the South with permanent exhibits displayed in Ruston, Baton Rouge, Birmingham and Dallas. Her writings and photography have been published regionally in magazines such as Louisiana Home & Garden, Country Roads and Delta Style, and nationally in Veranda and Ladies Home Journal.
Laura Gates primarily paints landscapes in oil, either in the studio or en plein air. In recent years she has started painting more with knives rather than brushes, giving her work a freer, more abstract quality. The painting knives also allow for the use of pure pigment, making her paintings richer in color and texture. She received her BFA in Art and her MA in History of Art and Architecture from the University of Massachusetts. For years she worked for the National Park Service in the west and southwest. Her job provided opportunities for living and working in national parks and protected areas, and working on international assignments. All of these places, with their amazing landscapes, peoples, cultural traditions, and deep history have informed her paintings. Now Gates paints full-time. Since 2015 she has been a resident artist at River Oaks Square Arts Center in Alexandria, Louisiana. Her work has been juried into a number of regional and national competitions over the past 20 years. She has won numerous awards including an honorable mention in the September Competition of the Alexandria Museum of Art. She has exhibited in group and solo shows in the southeast. Her work is in private and institutional collections in the United States and several foreign countries.
Dianne Douglas is about making art a transcendent experience. She discovers fresh ways of seeing the world every day. She has painted in watercolor her entire life, relishing the unpredictable ways the medium moves and consequently moves her. It has an unrivaled ability to capture and convey dazzling light. Her current work, however, seeks to reconcile opposites as we so often do to enrich our lives. It explores ways of mixing the transparency of watercolors with opaque printed materials to exploit the layering and texture inherent in collage. Picasso showed that adding “real-life” forms to painting opens rich, new possibilities for formal and expressive creativity. He was trying to shake up the world. Dianne simply wants to stir emotional responses arising from her experiences both locally and in her favorite cities around the world, such as Siena and Barcelona. Her preferred subjects to sketch, and sometimes photograph, include festivals, farmers' markets, cafes, work places: wherever people gather. Whether it's shoppers, tourists, musicians, individuals or groups, she finds interesting gestures, moods and movements that become the starting points for her paintings. For her the ultimate sense of completion comes when the viewer connects with her work in a meaningful way.