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10 Jan Artist Spotlight: Rosemary Curtin

Rosemary Curtin is an abstract expressionist who paints mainly in pastels and acrylics. Her work is characterized by gestural brush strokes and mark-making and the impression of spontaneity, most famously represented by American painters Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline and Mark Rothko. Curtin’s paintings also include landscapes and emotional pieces, and she is most known for her Mardi Gras and Totem Series available for viewing at www.RosemaryCurtin.com.

When did you start your career in art? How long have you known you wanted to be an artist?

I started my career in fine art about 25 years ago. I had always been blessed with an eye for design and color, and had used this innate ability helping friends and family with decorating projects but I was feeling restless for more. I enrolled in a beginners watercolor class at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design (MIAD) and immediately felt a passion to do more. I did not stop with watercolor. Primarily self taught, I branched out from watercolor to acrylics and, lately, pastels.
I think, internally, I always knew I wanted to be an artist but experienced fear around being “successful”. It wasn’t until it finally dawned on me that success is doing what I love and enjoying the process that I overcame that fear and have been creating ever since.

Describe your aesthetic in 3 words…

Colorful, Joyful, Innocent

Describe your artistic process and preparation?

My process-I start with a blank canvas and typically no preconceived idea of what I want to create. I select a color in the medium I am working with and make some marks. I then select another color that pleases me and add additional marks on the canvas. And so on…in one word, my process is intuitive.

Favorite piece you’ve created to date and why?

I can’t say what piece I have done that is my favorite. I am not sure I have created it yet.

Who inspires you personally and/or professionally?

So many people have inspired me personally and professionally. When someone really likes something I have done, that definitely inspires me to do more. My artist friends inspire me all the time with what they are working on and their process in creativity. I love working around other artists, inhaling their energy and learning new things!

Biggest accomplishment to date?

I have had pieces exhibited in a few museums and galleries and am thrilled that Coffey & Thompson is now representing my work.

Favorite location to create/what is your studio like?

I have a studio at C3 Lab and love this space. It is my playground to create in and I work around a group of wonderful artists.

A random fact about you?

I adore pottery.

One thing you couldn’t live without?

I could not live without my art supplies, a studio and my pottery collection.

Your all-time favorite artist and/or your favorite emerging artist?

My all time favorite artists are Vassily Kandinsky and Joan Miro. My favorite emerging artist is Jane Davies.

Name one goal for your career you’d like to achieve in the next 5 years?

My goal in the next 5 years is to have a show of new work that I would be proud of and is well received/enjoyed by those that come to see it.

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