libby barbee

Collages on cut panel … oh, hell YES. This is the work of Denver based artist Libby Barbee and I can safely say, as a collage artist myself, wowza – I am totally inspired! The way she uses cut panel to bring her work to life makes my heart race. All of the pieces above are from her series, titled Trophies, but please look through her whole portfolio to get a sense of her creativity and amazingness… case in point, Libby just finished this fantastic installation at Facebook HQ in Denver {images found on her Instagram feed}:

LOVE.





crissy arseneau

Oh, the dreamy, cloud-filled collage work of Vancouver based artist Crissy Arseneau. These pieces {and a few #wips from her Instagram feed} are from two of Crissy’s most recent series: Cloud City and Suspended in a Sunbeam. See? Super dreamy. Her shapes, color choices, and the way she weaves hard lines into curvy clouds makes me want to take a deep breath… and then run into the studio to cut things out for the rest of the day.





sabrina garrasi

“Watercolour, Ink and Pigments on “Amalfi” handmade cotton paper” sigh. This is the elegant work of Italian artist Sabrina Garrasi. Those inky lines, stone-like textures, and bold shapes… Stun. Ning. Happy Monday.





audun grimstad

Gasp! Perfect folding / flowing fabric, and abstract shapes filled with vibrant candy-colored gradients. This is the breathtaking work of Norwegian artist Audun Grimstad. All of these oil paintings {um yes, OIL PAINTINGS} are part of his most recent series:

” … “Body Cage” plays with elements of fashion design — ornate garments, lush spaces, bold colours — to create abstract arrangements that explore issues of feeling trapped inside the facades we construct around our identities. The paintings hint at narratives about the human condition, where the opposites hope and regret is central.”

Paintings.





daisy patton

Doesn’t that last piece make you want to call your BFF? Or paint? Or paint with your BFF? This is the work of American artist Daisy Patton. Watching her career flourish over the last few years has been so inspiring… she pushes her work every time she steps up to one of those giant panels. More detail, different color combinations, new techniques, and images that all have their own stories behind why she chose them. And guess what? I’m with Daisy right now! Yes, we’re in Aspen together for BIG PICTURE, BABY {a beautiful show that I curated that happens to be opening TONIGHT at Skye Gallery}. We’re putting on our snow boots and mittens, and heading out at 6pm… hope to see you there!





emily moore

I’m flying to Aspen today for a show that opens tomorrow night {see Monday’s post}, and oh my goodness, this gorgeous work is definitely setting the mood. These are just a few recent pieces {acrylic, gesso, graphite, enamel on panel} by Scottish artist Emily Moore. Mountains, chalets, and snowy vistas fill her dreamy 2018 portfolio. I’ve written about her twice already {1, 2}, and yes, I can confidently predict that I’ll do it again and again and again.

Emily’s work is available via Arusha Gallery, Edinburgh.




ronald jackson

Gasp! This is the large-scale, absolutely breathtaking work of American artist Ronald Jackson… and yes, that’s Ashley Longshore peeking up behind two of his pieces. I was just scrolling through Instagram {as you do} and saw her post about her latest, and very smart, art acquisition – !!! – Clearly, I dropped everything and wrote about him immediately. Beautifully painted patterns, masks, and those eyes… those eyes that stare into your soul. Not only is his work fascinating, so is his story. Let’s jump in right here:

… In 2001, halfway through his military career, Jackson had an epiphany that inspired him to consider a post-military career as an artist and painter. However, he realized that he needed much development, and that there was little to no opportunity to attend art school while serving abroad. He therefore read, researched and studied all he could in order to experience significant growth as he worked towards improving his skill; while at the same time, managing multiple military deployments and frequent training exercises.

Um yes, I have to get him on the podcast.





longshore . patton . watson . hildebrand . krysa

BIG PICTURE, BABY : BIG WORK BY BOLD WOMEN

I’m proud of every show I curate, but this one? Well, it’s a doozie. Somehow, I managed to bring a few of my most favorite artists together into one show. Add to that a beautiful gallery in downtown Aspen during the holidays and hello, we’ve got a winner. There are five artists in BIG PICTURE, BABY … American artists Ashley Longshore and Daisy Patton, and three Canadians – Janna Watson, Meghan Hildebrand, and myself, Danielle Krysa. Yes, I curated myself into the show because it was just too exciting not to. Here’s my curatorial statement:

“At first glance, it may seem like the artists in this show don’t have much in common (well, other than ‘going big or going home’ that is), but when you look a little closer there are actually quite a few similarities that connect them. From vivid color palettes and dizzying patterns, to bizarre narratives and intricate details… and, of course the fact all of five of these artists step up to the canvas with a fearless approach to art making. “Big Picture, Baby” will be bringing larger than life portraits, bold paint strokes, and even a few big laughs to Skye Gallery this winter.” ~ Danielle Krysa, Curator/Artist

I will be in Aspen this THURSDAY night, December 13th from 6-9pm, for the artists’ reception party. If you’re in town, please join us for some big bold beautifulness, and if you aren’t in Aspen at the moment, you can also reach out to Skye Gallery to inquire about available work {each artist has included three BIG pieces}. Happy Monday.

ps. the show got a really great write-up in the Aspen Times over the weekend.





dad

I’m not sure where to start, or why I’m writing this here. I just have to, so I hope you’ll indulge me.

My dad died very suddenly, early Friday morning. He was in Jamaica, for the 8th year in a row, to run at the Reggae Marathon with a group of his friends. They refer to themselves as “The Four Amigos”, and this is their annual running trip. The race was set for Sunday morning, but they always go a few days early to get used to the heat … translation: to hang out, laugh, run on the beach, and drink Red Stripe beer. On Friday morning my dad had gone for a run on the beach with one of the other amigos, and then headed back to his room for a quick shower before breakfast… but he never arrived at breakfast. Even as I write this I can’t believe it’s real.

He and my mom had just come home from a month long trip to India and Nepal… their 50th wedding anniversary trip. I was nervous about him jetting off to Jamaica right after such a big trip, but I learned a long time ago that, when it comes to running, none of us could ever convince my dad not to race! He has done 29 full marathons and at least 60 half marathons. I’m proud to say I’ve run several races with my dad over the years (and finally beat him for the first time about 3 years ago… I had to wait for him to turn 70 before I even had a chance).

If you listen to my podcast, or have ever heard me speak, I talk about my parents a lot. My dad is a PhD scientist, and my mom is an artist… and I suppose I am a fine blend of both. When I was in first year university, as a marine biology major (yep, true story), it was my dad that called me half way through the year and encouraged me to switch into fine art. He said “You’ve been an artist since the day you were born – it’s who you are – it’s what you have to do.” I mentioned he has a PhD, right? And he told me to SWITCH INTO ART?!

One of my favorite childhood memories, was when I drew this masterpiece, titled “Big Bird, Little Tree“:

I was three. My dad came by, looked over my shoulder and said, “Well, we have to put that in a frame.” He always framed all of my mom’s paintings, and for my bird in the tree he used all of the fancy tools he used for her work… a mat, real glass, and an amazing gold frame (it’s hanging in my studio right now). I remember feeling so proud. I felt like a REAL artist, just like my mom.

Through my whole life, Dad was the one to give me practical advice … yep, scientist. He taught me the thrills of list-making and binder dividers. He taught me to prioritize things that mattered to me, and then to put my head down and go get them. He had great, memorable sayings too… anytime I said anything about being lucky when it came to my achievements, Dad would say: “Yep, it’s a funny thing – the harder you work, the luckier you get.”  I don’t say I’m lucky anymore, now I say “I work my ass off.” Which I do, and I’m so glad my dad knows that.

Last week I was speaking in Vancouver, and my parents were in the front row. While I was signing books, my dad quickly cut the line to say goodbye. He wasn’t a very effusive guy, but for some reason on this particular night, he took the time to tell me how proud he was. He said, “Not only are you a wonderful speaker, it’s quite something to watch you inspire and move an entire room full of people… I couldn’t be more proud of you.” He died a week later.

I love you so much, Dad. I can feel you watching over us already. I know everyone has their time to go, and I’m glad that yours was in a place you love, surrounded by good friends, after a run on the beach. But it was too soon. We had more races to run.

I’ll be taking a bit of time off from posts and the podcast to be with my family. ~ Danielle xo

ps. My dad had a blog too. I set it up for him on Father’s Day a bunch of years ago. It’s called Running In the Zone.





amy rice

Clearly I had to include the closeup of that final piece … the worm! I can almost smell freshly dug soil and a warm summer breeze in this latest body of work {acrylic, enamel, ink, and in some cases, cut paper too} by American artist Amy Rice. Her new show, titled “Root Down”, opens TOMORROW: December 1, 12-5 pm at Groveland Gallery in Minneapolis. Here are a few of their words about this show:

“Amy Rice’s artwork presents wildlife at its fullest. Her affection for the outdoors manifests itself in vibrant reds, yellows, purples, blues and greens – from rolling fields of flowers ready to be gathered to isolated flora depicted stem, root, and all. Having studied the anatomy of flowers and invested time into growing her own, Rice’s work is both a study and celebration of her wild subjects.”

Sigh. I’m not sure I’m ready for December just yet.