Sunday, September 30, 2012

Basement Find Inspires this Artist

Hawaii based artist Karen Gally is this week's guest blogger for the Artist as Collector series.
Gouache on board
12" x 12"
collection of Karen Gally
I found this painting in the basement of my grandmother's house in Philadelphia as I was organizing her estate sale in the 70's.  When she was about 68,  the house-  a small brick bungalow and it's contents were bequeathed to her by her boyfriend, a traveling magician. 

At the time, I was living in Maryland.  I didn't know anything about tropical flowers and assumed the artist had taken liberties making the anthurium curvacious and the white ginger broken at the stem.  The painting was a bit dusty and had acquired a water stain in the right hand corner, but I loved it for it's vintage look and kept it. It has no date or title but has a very clear signature of inez in lower case with the dot over the i as a circle.

Years later I moved to Hawaii and understood how the artist captured these very real tropical flowers.  There is a mastery of color, balance, and romance, with beautiful fluid brush strokes that are simple and expressive. The taupe colored background is the unpainted color of the mat board. had the picture matted and framed with Koa wood. 

I have tropical flowers all around my garden. Images of flora pervade my art in the form of appliqued art quilts, fabric collages on wood  panels, and even imaginary botanical graphite drawings. This piece is wonderful to glance upon daily and surely has influenced my own style of eloquence and color choices.

Karen Gally lives and works on Kauai, Hawaii.  Her lush and intricate quilts, paintings and drawings are represented by Galerie 103 owned by artist Bruna Stude in Poipu, Kauai. In addition, this week, on October 4th  Evolution: Mixed Media Works by Karen Gally  opens at the
Honolulu Museum of Art First Hawaiian Center on Bishop Street. Nineteen works of the last ten years will be displayed through January 30 2013. For more info, Karen can be reached at

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