I walked from room to room in Carol’s old farm house as she showed me her work. Her art was everywhere, hanging on walls, stored in boxes, framed and unframed, upstairs and down, in her car and on her porch. She has large original batiks that she sells for $1000 and small prints that she sells for $30. She has scarves and trivets and cards and mouse pads and pillows. Some of her work is framed and some of it hangs loosely from decorative wooded dowels. Carol is going to be in three different exhibits before she shows her work in the June Bedlam Farm Open House. I was fortunate enough to get to see it all before the other shows began.
It was the first time I met Carol, we had only “talked” on facebook. But I had seen pictures of her work and from the way she presented it and wrote about it, I knew she was a professional. And then I found out she lived only a few towns away from me and I knew having her art in the Open House was going to work out.
Carol and her husband Dick have been Dairy Farmers most of their lives. When they sold the farm a few years ago, Carol went back to doing what she went to school for, Art. And specifically, batik. That was in the 1970’s and she told me that all the time she was farming, she was gathering the images that she now uses in her art. That might be one reason she’s so prolific, she has a head and heart full of creative ideas that are finally being released into the world. Lucky for us.
Carol’s Batiks are paintings really. She paints with wax and pigment. From what she told me, the process is a constant flow. She only has so much control over the hot wax that she drips and brushes on the fabric. I didn’t get to see her work, but from how she described it, it seemed like a dance. She starts with an idea, maybe just one image that she sketch’s on a piece of paper, but works free hand on the fabric. Then she lets the piece evolve as she works on it. So it’s a somewhat spontaneous process. You can see the motion in her images, they are full of life.
We also talked about patterns in nature and her desire to depict what goes on under the ground, as well as on the earth and in the sky. Based in nature, her work has a mystical quality to it. It’s filled with her love of the natural world and animals.
So I’m thrilled, not only be selling and showing Carol’s work in my School House Gallery in June, but I’m also excited that she my neighbor. We’re already finding out that we have a lot in common, a good beginning for a friendship.
Click here to see more of Carol’s work on her website Amity Farm Batik.