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Imagination encircles the world

Updated: May 15, 2020

This week on ART YARD CREATE our inspiration is COLOR. I began the thread with my recent painting:

Meridith McNeal, “Magical Things from Quarantine Through The Unusual Door”, 2020, watercolor on paper, 12x12”

And a quote: “Delaney’s paintings became freer, looser, more expressive of joy, and more colorfully complex. Yet he continued to faithfully make extensive use of yellow, a color that he associated with inner universal spirituality. The best example of this, and one of the best paintings in the show, makes central use of white and yellow as a symbol for intellect, creativity, happiness, and the power of persuasion." - Joseph Nechvatal, BEAUFORD DELANEY: Resonance of Form and Vibration of Color, The Brooklyn Rail

Here are some of the images posted in the COLOR thread so far:

Felix Plaza, "Self Portrait in Blue and Gold", 2020, silkscreen print
Felix Plaza, "Shifting Portrait for Color Thread", 2020, silkscreen print

Brece Honeycutt, "Summer Scobiosa or The Pincushion Flower", 2020, natural dye on paper
Summer Scobiosa (from google search)
Jane Huntington, Color painting from Photograph of High Line, 2020, watercolor on paper
Fatima Traore, Palatte Recreation (For CREATE Color thread), 2020 ink and watercolor on paper
Claudia Alvarez, Rainbow painted for painting demonstration, watercolor on paper

Yesterday 13 of the 16 exhibiting artists included in the ART YARD exhibition Reflections, currently on the walls at St. Joseph’s College Alumni Room Gallery, participated in a lively Virtual Artists’ Talk presented by St. Joseph’s College.

The talk was open to the public and attended by SJC students, community members and friends from all over the world! Gallery Director Ramona Candy introduced us, then I gave a short introduction to ART YARD and the exhibition. Each artists spoke about our work on view in the exhibition.

Teaching Artist Reg Lewis discusses his work
Reg Lewis, "Pro-Test: Distortion of the Self(ie)", 2019, Charcoal on Scranton test sheets

While we did have an issue with an intruding troll, Ramona scrambled to oust the invader and we carried on with the lecture.

Many attendees wrote to thank us and express their enthusiasm. Marie Roberts shared this terrific note from her friend research scientist Dr. Marilyn August:

“I really enjoyed it. In spite of the “distractions”, I think the moderator and all presenters did a great job. It was such fun to see you!

Keep me in mind if there are other online events like this—interesting to hear what is in the mind of the artist and what ends up as a visual. I also loved hearing about what the students took away from classes, discussions, and observations to inspire their own work.”


This week at ART YARD Advanced Studio I worked with participating artists on a deep visualization process to help activate and hone our imaginations.

We began with a discussion about imagination and a few quotes:

“I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” - Albert Einstein, 1929

“People always ask me: ‘Where do you get all these ideas? Information is coming from all kinds of sources, new sources every day…I digest [it], channel it through my own imagination, and put it back into the world.” - Keith Haring, 1984

In a guided visualization I am to give enough details that people can follow along as they imagine the details themselves.

We began by imagining a table we know well (but not where we are now), we sat at the table and looked at its surface and texture. We were handed a beverage in a cup or glass. We looked carefully at the shape and feel of the vessel, identified the beverage. Perhaps even tasted and sniffed its aroma. [Stop and take notes.]

Ajani Russell, Guided Visualization (table and beverage), 2020, pastel on paper
Zeke Brokow, Guided Visualization (table and beverage), 2020, sharpie on paper
Assata Benoit, Guided Visualization (table and beverage), 2020, marker on paper

Then we stood and walked to a door. The door in fact a portal to another place. I asked the artists to look below their feet to determine the location (Grass? Cobblestone? Floor boards? Tile?) walk until they arrive at a staircase. Determine all of the details on the staircase as they walk on the stairs. [Stop and take notes.]

Abriel Gardner, Guided Visualization (table and portal), 2020, marker on paper
Quentin Williamston, Guided Visualization (beverage, stairs, visitor and advice), 2020, sharpie on paper

Fatima Traore, Guided Visualization (stairs), 2020, colored pencil on paper

At the landing look about you. A being will enter from your right and hand you something. Take good care to investigate what it is. [Stop and take notes.]

Wayne Gross, Guided Visualization (a gift), 2020, colored pencil on paper
Abriel Gardner, Guided Visualization (a gift), 2020, sharpie on paper

Create a drawing from any part or combination of elements of your visualization.

Back into our imaginations we found ourselves at the same landing. Go back to the gift you were given. Look inside of it. There is another gift! It may be something as big as an ocean inside of something as small as a tiny frog. [Stop and take notes.]

Akash Wilmont, Guided Visualization (a gift inside a gift), 2020, pencil on paper
Zake Brokow, Guided Visualization (A being and a gift), 2020, sharpie on paper

Looking off in the distance there is a chair. We walk to the chair and notice all of the details [Stop and take notes.]

Sage White (photo from critique) Guided Visualization (a gift within a gift), 2020, sharpie on paper
Assata Benoit, Guided Visualization (gifts and a comfortable seat), 2020, marker and colored pencil on paper

Quentin Williamston, Guided Visualization (a seat and a gift), 2020, sharpie on paper

Make room for another person, perhaps beside you or across from you. Invite that person to join you. Ask that person for advice. Listen carefully.

Create a drawing from any part or combination of elements of your visualization.

Kevin Anderson, Guided Visualization (a visitor with advice), 2020, pencil on paper
Zahir Prudent, Guided Visualization (A visitor with advice), 2020, sharpie on paper
Sigrid Dolan, Guided Visualization (a visitor with advice), 2020, pencil and watercolor on paper

Our critique was fascinating as each artist shared their work and described the details of their own visualization!

Artists have the ability to call up a lush and vibrant imaginative world. During these very strange and challenging times this skill is practically miraculous.


Our Advanced Studio Senior Curators are meeting this evening to continue work on our exhibition In Reflection selected from the Kentler Flat Files. More on this soon!

Senior Curators meeting on Zoom

ART YARD Partnership school PS 6 posted a link to vote for us in The World Happiness Awards. We are currently in third place, but only by 10 votes!


We hope you are hanging in there and inviting your imagination to flourish!

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