I usually try to post interviews about an artist prior to his/her opening reception if possible (or if their interview coincides with a solo show, etc.). However, last week was crazy busy for me and there was soooo much going on that I didn’t get this lovely lady’s interview posted before her opening reception at Columbus Cultural Arts Center last Friday. My apologies to Christine but her show will continue through October 4th so you can still catch her solo show. And a gorgeous one it is!!!
I was lucky enough to fit all three ladies’ openings (Ashley Pierce at Lindsay Gallery, Stephanie Rond at Shot Tower Gallery and Christine’s show) on Friday. Matter of fact, I just got to the Arts Center as Christine was headed out the door to Stephanie’s show but she was gracious enough to walk Ron and me into the Center so we could quickly glimpse her mixed media pieces…WOOT! OMG…her work is beyond words! I’ll let her and the pics speak for themselves!
Christine Guillot (pronounced ‘gee- o’ hard /g/..French, of course!) Ryan and I initially met in person at the Exposure show at CS Gallery in March of this year although I have seen many of her pieces in The Art and Artists of 614 FB page heard her name numerous times from other artists. Christine and I spent a little time talking with Chad Cochran at Exposure and decided that an interview was in our mutual futures!
Of course, as time progressed she and I kept running into each other at many art openings and we got to be friendly. She’s not only a great artist, she is a lot of fun to hang with!!!!
Actually, Christine has gone by her name for quite a while but is thinking of changing her artist’s name to CgRyan because Guillot is so hard to pronounce and remember…that being said, how about if we learn more about her background?
Born and raised in Los Angeles (Santa Monica), she received a BA in Fine Art from UCLA (before their art department was well known for it’s MFA program). However, she wanted to make a viable living being creative so she went back to school and got a degree in design…a BFA in Design from the Art Center College in Pasadena CA.
After graduation, she was recruited by a design firm in Ohio in 1991. She met her hubby after moving here and chose to stay in the Midwest. However, she still visits family and galleries in LA a couple of times a year. At one point, she took a break of 15 years from exhibiting art while having a career in marketing as a graphic designer. Then in 2009, she chose to resume exhibiting and fortunately for us, she continues to do so!!! I feel very lucky to be able to do design work for private clients, which gives me the flexibility to focus on my art.
Her genres are mixed media collage painting, mixed media sculpture, and mixed media digital art. Everything inspires her!
I believe everything is connected, that reality is greater that we can see or know. I adore pattern, connections, and complexity, to me, they hint at the infinite. I love layering, and many of my pieces take a long time for me to feel they are complete. A year ago, I started 2 different practices that have increased my productivity: the first is a practice of working on 2 same size canvases at the same time, with similar themes, but different methods and approaches. It has really helped me work more freely, though I do end up focusing on one at a time after I reach the piece’s midpoints. The second is doing “dailies” where I made a commitment for 90 days to do a small mixed media piece every day, starting Dec. 1 2013. I continued after the 90 days because it was so rewarding to finish something every day, and have the opportunity to try new things quickly. That’s where my use of spray paint and pan pastels (new techniques for her works) really took off, and I started using these techniques in my larger works on canvas. Adding them in layers with acrylic paint and collage elements results in exciting layering possibilities!
Christine thinks of art as a verb, that works are artifacts of that verb, that the process and evolution is never-ending. Her hope is that she always feels she has places to explore and things to learn.
In addition to creating art, she has been teaching at the Cultural Arts Center (CAC) this summer and found that she LOVED teaching. It was an amazingly fulfilling experience to see other artists grow and try new things, and to be able to help them find their own solutions, thus she wants to teach more.
The next few months are filled with exciting events for her and her art. She is super psyched about her solo show of 150 new pieces at CAC (opening September 5, Friday 5:30-8:30). Her decision to call the show ‘Converging Boundaries’ came from her discovery of how many boundaries she crated for herself in her own art and her desire to create them to give herself room to experience, challenge herself and develop of an artist. And she did just that with the works that range from 6 x 6 inches to 6 x 6 feet in mixed media on canvases and wood panels, limited edition archival digital works, and mixed media installation.
The exhibit came about through a fellow artist’s recommendation. Stephanie Sherwood, who teaches book making at CAC, recommended Christine’s work last year to Eric Rausch, on CAC’s Exhibits Committee. He liked Christine’s work and suggest4ed that she apply for a 2014 exhibit…and, happily, she was accepted in March of 2013. Meaning that she has been preparing for the September show for 18 months!!
Another first for this exhibit, is that I asked Eric Rausch to curate my show, because he believes in me as an artist, and has a passion for curating. This is the first time that I have collaborated with a curator, and I have LOVED the support, his input, and more detached point of view in deciding which pieces to include. Eric encouraged me to pursue an idea for a large scale installation element, and it has been fabulous working on this installation element for the upcoming show!
In addition, for the CAC September show, she’s exhibiting “Pieces of Parts,” elements that were originally created to be PARTS of other PIECES, but were so interesting or intriguing just as they were that she saved them, scanned them into her computer, and created high-resolution digital works, and printed them on an archival pigment printer. Because many of her pieces are larger and time-intensive, she wanted to find a way of sharing other parts of her art in a more affordable manner, but with integrity: to be able to retain the “unique” factor of the works on canvas separate for collectors that value unique works. These have received very positive feedback so far, so Christine is excited to see what reaction they receive at the show.
But her solo show is not all that has happened for her recently. She also has work in 2 juried group shows: ‘Origins of Abstraction’ at the Carnegie Gallery in the Main Library; and at the Concourse Gallery in the Upper Arlington Municipal Building.
Then is January 2015, she will be one of five women mixed media artists featured in a group exhibit at the Concourse Gallery curated by N. Penny Denning. And in December 2014 and May 2015, CAW (Creative Arts of Women) will be featuring her works in their group shows.
Christine Guillot Ryan