Beth Guipe Hall, artist and longtime friend of the Harrison Center, will be unveiling her new show, Radiance, this April during First Friday celebrations. Radiance is the latest body of work by Hall, and draws from a number of artistic styles and methods that are both familiar to Hall’s past work and a branch off into new traditions not before seen in her portfolio.
There are two things that immediately stick out when you first walk into Beth’s studio at the Harrison Center: the sheer number of paintings and artistic pieces covering every surface, and the overwhelming prevalence of color throughout the room. Similar to her personality, the studio feels like an explosion of life and energy that, at first glance, can seem jumbled and disconnected, but a closer look reveals a definite order to the chaos and a subtle connection between each piece. Consisting of four distinct artistic techniques, Radiance reflects Beth’s approach by achieving both stylistic diversity and thematic unity with watercolor paintings, sewn paper lamps, embroidered and weaved fiber works, and her signature encaustic collages, all contributing to a beautiful collection of colorful, uplifting pieces.
“These pieces are very graphic, geometric, and clean, and when you look at them, there are places for your eyes to land,” said Hall. “It (Radiance) came out of changing the way I worked, going from things that were recognizable to things that are not, and so I planned this show to include some things that I’ve really been wanting to work on.”
Beth has traditionally been known for her work with encaustic collage, a method that involves layering wax and colors on canvas and applying heat to manipulate and fuse the multiple levels with another, with her trademark being photographic imagery at the base of each encaustic work. While Radiance features a number of Encaustic pieces, it finds its own voice by both venturing into several new artistic genres and by omitting the graphic images typically seen in Beth’s work, instead introducing many pieces that prominently feature geometric shapes and patterns across all four mediums.
Aside from the geometric elements, one of the most noteworthy characteristics of the pieces within Radiance is the bright and vibrant color scheme. Drawing influence from a number of different areas, including travel to other states, memories of childhood lessons with the “Campfire Girls,” and even thoughts of the future, Hall offers a creative array of pieces featuring a broad spectrum of colors and designs that express feelings of cheer and hope. The use of encaustic techniques give many of the pieces rare shades and pigmentations not often seen in traditional painting methods through the use of layering wax and paint, and the fiber designs feature intricate displays of embroidery, weaving, and rug hooking with colorful materials, all lending to the vibrant and encouraging mood inherent to Radiance.
Beth Hall has a rich catalogue of beautiful artistic pieces, and Radiance adds another memorable chapter to her long history of respected works. Exhibiting a number of pieces that display several different styles, this is a show that truly has something for everyone to enjoy, and we hope that you will join us in celebrating Radiance at April’s First Friday.