Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Claire Smith - Linebaugh Library artist of the month

Claire Justine Smith, an abstract painter for over 40 years will be the Linebaugh Library artist of the month. Her focus will be Sumi-E paintings.  Below is her artist's statement:

    I've never felt at home on earth.  I've been a stranger here all my life.  I grew up on the family ranch in the Glass Mountain Range in the Big Bend area of far west Texas, north of Marathon.  I learned to count by counting the stars of the Milky Way as they came out at night, until there were too many stars to count.  I wondered which light in the sky I really belonged on.  Somewhere out there was my real home.
    I lived in Houston, Texas, from 1965 to 1971, during the height of the space program.  My children and I watched through the telescope the points of light moving across the night sky, as the space vehicles circled the earth or headed to the moon.  I wanted to go, too!
    "Space" images began to come to me about 1970, which were first drawn on paper in black ink.  Then I was accepted at the Joan Miro Drawing Competition in Barcelona, Spain, which I entered between 1974 and 1983.  Later, I began drawing "in spaces" images on glass in three dimensions.  At first, they were done in black ink, and later in colored ink.  Where did these images come from?  I decided to find out.
    So, one night, I left the earth and moved out into space.  I moved among the planets, stars, suns, moons, and galaxies galore.  It is beautiful out in the universe, and noisy, too.  Finally, I came to the end of the universe, and there was a wall!  I thought that was strange-so, being the curious Gemini that I am, I decided to climb over and see what was on the other side.   What I saw were all the images I have been drawing floating before me.  My images were real after all!
Biography:  Graduated with a BA from Fontbonne College in Saint Louis, Missouri.  Studied at the San Antonio Art Institute,13-10 Studio, The Art League of Houston, and independent studies.  Exhibited work in the US with the majority being in the Southwest, Portugal, Spain, Italy, and France.  Paintings are in collections in the US and Europe.  Author: Thursday's Child, Artful Answers, and featured in Living by Your Brush Alone, by Edna Pierson