Lines & Lineage: New Works by Dolly Hartman and Mary Hartman
Opening Saturday, May 12 at 6 pm and continuing through June 16, The Art Store will present Lines & Lineage: New Works by Dolly Hartman and Mary Hartman.
Elisabeth Wallace Hartman, known as Dolly to almost everyone, is a still life painter based in Charleston, West Virginia. Her work has been exhibited widely throughout the region, her awards are many as are the collections in which she is included. For many years she worked in oils as a portrait artist. Those works included families, senior partners at law firms and many important dignitaries. "My work is around. You don't forget your children that come off the easel." Lines and Lineage is the first large body of new work the revered 86 year old Hartman has exhibited in several years.
The French phrase for still life is nature morte or dead nature, which is in Dolly's view an inadequate description. Even though the apple is plucked, or the turnip is ready for slicing, these objects, to Dolly, remain very much alive. She has always been challenged and intrigued by dialogues that develop between light and dark, color and line, shapes that are positive or negative, edges that are soft or crisp. She says “Each picture is a journey, and I try to embark without a destination. Instead, I hope to let the work take me on a new exploration. I am grateful to be a traveler on the visual and spiritual adventures that can happen with in one small rectangle.”
Lines and Lineage also includes works by Hartman's daughter Mary.
The ideas and subject matter in Mary Hartman’s work are longstanding; she works quickly from life, such as in the wildacres study, and slowly from downloaded images and from her own photographs. In most of the horse drawings on panel, she concentrated on one formal aspect of rendering (line, value, etc.), as she has found this to be a good practical exercise, as well as a welcome change from distractibility in the studio.
The larger works on panel represent a new-ish direction, where she has intended the form and the ground to be interchangeable in some passages. And then there are the library drawings — no thesis here except admiration.
Mary has a favorite drawing among those submitted for this exhibition, because it looks (she fancies) as though Dolly (her mother) might have drawn it; “I see some of her line work in the left panel of the pair called morning turnout, and hope that this is true. Thank you for looking.”
The Art Store is located in the Downtown Charleston at 233 Hale Street. Hours are Tuesday – Friday 10-5:30; Saturday 10-5. For further information please call 304-345-1038 or visit us online at theartstorewv.com.