"Imagination Runs Wild"
June 1 - August 10
Esther Ritz, born New York City, has been working as an abstract painter and contemporary artist in Dallas and Santa Fe for the last fifteen years. She is a lifelong painter who began experimenting with color at an early age. Esther vividly remembers her parents taking her, as a child, to Greenwich Village in New York City. They went to an art supply store to purchase a real artist's box, with oil paints and brushes. The acquisition of authentic art supplies solidified a vote of confidence in her artistic talent.
Esther has studied at intensive workshops with French and American master painters. In 2010 her work was juried and selected to be in the national magazine, Studio Visit. Esther was recently awarded Best in Show by the Texas Visual Artists Association in 2013. Esther allows her energy to flow freely onto the canvas in the form of paint. She is inspired by the rhythm of upbeat music, from musicians such as Buddy Holly, Al Green, Elton John, and Aretha Franklin. Her paintings are guided by a compelling sense of color and a strong instinct for pattern and texture. Her uninhibited exploration of collage is mesmerizing. Esther harnesses her imagination without restraint. The power of her unconscious results in a creative process that is quite astonishing. "I like to let the freedom, play, emotion, and energy of the moment take over and guide each work of art. This demands I pay attention, stay in the moment, and enter into a new relationship. Each painting becomes an absorbing mystery, with its
unique possibilities, expectations, frustrations, and surprises."
August 15 - October 20
Painting to me is very personal but live painting, or location painting pushes me to try new things. I can lose myself in many paintings I have working. Keeping 2 to 3 works open at all times, helps my mind stay free to stop and change gears as necessary. I have a need, a drive, an impulse to paint, to create, to explore color, shade, tint, line and form. I have days when the work continuously pours out of me and it will not stop. I come home tired and spent. I paint until I have no more to give the canvas. Other days I stand in front of a blank canvas, uninspired, only to leave and return another day. Then there is a shift inside me, sparks fly down deep, inspiration starts to boil inside me. I can feel it burning, but I hold back till I can't stand it, then it’s on. Bonfires erupt in my imagination and the urge and drive to have the brush in my hand and a pallet full of paint is overwhelming. When I create, I feel great joy and happiness. When I share it with others, and see my paintings bring them joy as well, this is, in part, what it is all about. When I have painted my last canvas and given the world all I have as an artist, it is my hope to be but a breath of air, an empty vessel. I want to have given you my all and left you with paintings that stir your thoughts and move your soul.
When I was a child, my mother said to me, 'If you become a soldier, you'll be a general. If you become a monk, you'll end up as the Pope.' Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.