Field Notes: Rebecca Shelly & Rebecca Wallace
Spetember 5–29, 2019
Artist's Reception: Friday, September 6, 6-8pm
Rebecca Shelly's website
Rebecca Wallace's website
En plein air is a painting technique that was developed in France in the mid- 19th century. It translates into meaning, a painting that is executed out of doors. It is a direct response to the scene or subject in front of the artist. This thread of direct response weaves its way through each of the artists work presented in Field Notes. Rebecca Shelly and Rebecca Wallace apply different approaches of working en plein air to create the work presented in this exhibition. Leaving the studio and working in nature, both artists document their process and exploration, in turn using their experiences and studies to inspire and create their art.
Shelly combines her background in painting with her exploration of quilting. Each piece originates from her travels along the California coastline or nature that she finds in her backyard. Using fabric instead of paint allows for her to combine the tradition of quilt making with her fascination of using color and line to describe naturalistic forms. Shelly travels with a Singer Hand Crank sewing machine that she restored from an unusable state. Its portability allows her to sew in spaces that are outside of her studio. By sewing on location she is able to perfect her color choices, get the impression of a scene and start directly on a piece. She brings this work back to the studio and uses contemporary machines to cut and quilt these designs.
Wallace’s work looks at different experiences of space, both internal and external as inspiration and subject matter. The work created for this show explores the overlap between the two. Painting en plein air she travels to different locations observing and documenting the different colors and matter specific to each place. Using her paintings and studies from each location, Wallace returns to her studio to create collagraph plates which recall her perceptions, thoughts and memories of each place.
Rebecca Wallace is a painter and muralist who has taught art classes for the last 5 years at Yuba College. During that time she worked closely with the Yuba Arts Council teaching art to incarcerated juveniles and adults. In 2018 the Yuba Arts Council commissioned her to create two murals for the town of Live Oak, and most recently she was invited to lead a plein air painting class in the Sutter Buttes. Wallace received her MFA at California College of the Arts and BA at San Francisco State University. She was a recipient of the Murphy Cadogen Fellowship in Fine Arts and a finalist for the Tournesol Award in the Headlands Center For the Arts in Sausalito. Her work has been shown in New American Paintings as well as various shows throughout the United States. Recently Wallace moved to Fort Bragg California where she continues to work as artist.
Rebecca Shelly is a multimedia artist who explores the naturalistic environment with fabric, paint and thread. Shelly is a lecturer at California State University, Chico with a focus on painting and foundation courses. She is also an Associate Professor in the Butte College Art Department where she teaches lecture and studio courses. She can also be found at Honey Run Quilters teaching garment fitting classes. Shelly was trained to paint in oils at the Maine College of Art. She received her Master of Fine Arts Degree at Portland State University. Over the years, her paintings have explored disappearing seed varieties, the resurgence of home vegetable gardening and the landscapes around her. She has shown this work across the nation, received numerous awards and her travel art studio has been featured in Studios Magazine.