Today I’m talking with talented artist Rachel Piering from South Florida, whose first solo exhibit debuts tomorrow, March 13. This young artist has a dynamic, lively style that resonates with life and beauty.
Rachel's artwork is categorized into three themes: Art for Life; Ladies Series and Enviro-Art. "Art for Life" is an expression of living, learning and loving. Her tag line sums it up: Love to Live. Live to Learn. Learn to Love. Intrigued by sociology, particularly the role of women, the "Ladies Series" embraces femininity and incorporates female portraits as the portal for expressing thoughts and as a reputation of beauty. Lastly, the "Enviro-Art" series is a tribute to our responsibility of environmental preservation.
In all three series, principle features of simplistic forms and figures are created by contrasting bold and often times metaphoric colors.
Rachel has called Florida home for the past 20 years. A self taught painter, she excelled in drawing, ceramics, and print making while studying fine art at Stetson University. Although art can serve as an escape, her artistic expression is embraced as an endeavor to share a thought and potentially provoke reflections of encouragement and optimism.
Bonnie: How did you get started with your art?
Rachel: I've been drawing for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid I would draw cartoon characters non-stop, my favorite being Garfield or Heathcliff. At every grade level, art has been a positive experience. My teachers gave me a lot of support and emphasized that I had a "talent." Talent or not, art has been an integral part of my life. It is a side of me that refuses to be ignored.
Bonnie: What drives you to express yourself creatively this way?
Rachel: I'm driven by the notion that I want to be an artist when I grow up. The people I admire most are artists. Artists are unique individuals. It's one thing to "walk to the beat of a different drum." It's another to not even need a drum. Painting, specifically, is a great medium because of the vibrant colors and the ability for clean and exact lines. I chose acrylic because it dries really fast and I can add several layers for texture.
Bonnie: Is there an inherent message you like to display in your paintings?
Rachel: I like to think my paintings, as a female artist who paints "feminine" art, provokes thoughts of empowerment for other women. The biggest compliment is when someone can relate to one of my paintings. It's a bonus, if they have a story to share that exemplifies what I was "trying to communicate."
Bonnie: What are you hoping people walk away with after seeing your paintings?
Rachel: Besides a painting, I hope people leave happier then when they arrived. There's so much negative in this world and I hope people view my paintings as a breath of fresh air. I also hope people are intrigued enough to tell others and incorporate my artwork in future conversations. What? How else am I going to become a famous artist one day?
Bonnie: Tell me about the show and what people will see.
Rachel: The show is the result of a grant I received through the Broward County Cultural Division. I applied for the grant after being inspired from the Artist as Entrepreneur Class through ArtServe. The show is my first solo exhibit and I'm excited to have all of my paintings on display in one venue. Three suites within the gallery will display the three themes: Art for Life; Ladies Series and Enviro-Art Series. Having all the paintings in one place makes my style more recognizable.
Rachel Piering’s solo exhibit, VISUAL HEART, will be at the Uncommon Gallery, 2713 E. Commercial Blvd., in Fort Lauderdale from March 13 to April 4, 2009.
The show opens with an art reception Friday, March 13th from 6pm to 11pm. She will be painting live at the gallery on Saturday, March 21 & and March 28 from noon to 4pm.
For more information, visit her website at www.rachelpiering.com