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Magic Realism in Watercolor with Valerie Hird

The Art Students League of New York 215 W 57th St, New York, NY, USA

The practice of magical realism -- of visual alchemy -- in art dates back through many centuries and cultures. This course will explore current watercolor techniques which will, paradoxically, share parallels in style and content with Byzantine illuminations, Persian miniatures and Medieval manuscripts. Students will be encouraged to uncover what is hidden in ordinary daily experience and to explore the magical nature of the subjects they choose. By combining subtlety of movement with vigorous linear patterns, painted elements appear to defy gravity. By employing an intensified palette and simplified color schemes -- including, of course, gilding -- their watercolors project a power and elegance that look surprisingly contemporary. Time will be divided between demonstrations and working at the school, and on-site painting in Central Park; with students being encouraged to develop their own iconographic images based on personal observation. Although students will be encouraged to experiment with different papers, only basic watercolor supplies will be needed for magical realism to speak for itself.

Valerie Hird has traveled for over 30 years with her watercolors (stuffed deep) in her knapsack. From the Scottish moors to the deserts of the Arabian Gulf and the mountains of Central Asia, her approach to color and technique has been informed and influenced by a variety of visual cultures. Hird received a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from The Vermont College of Art. The Nohra Haime Gallery in New York City, has been her primary representative for the past twenty-two years and has been responsible for her US and international exhibitions. Hird has participated recently in a number of solo and group exhibitions including the Center for Book Arts in Manhattan, MASSMoCA, Portsmouth Museum, and the Tampa Art Museum. The United Nations’ Art in Embassies program has twice acquired Hird’s work for their embassies in Turkey and Chile. Other collections include the US State Department, Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Fleming Museum, and Standard Charter Bank. Articles and reviews of her work have appeared in the New York Times, The New Yorker, Art New England, Jordan Times, Gallery&Studio among others.

See more at: http://theartstudentsleague.org/Workshops.aspx#HirdJune

Monday–Friday, 1:30–5:00 pm
Fee: $410 (includes $10 materials fee)
Instructor present each day Enrollment limited to 12 students
Please Request Supply List

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from 16 to 20 June 2014



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