Heather Marks and I first met a couple of years ago when I attended some of the art group meetings, including Cap City Creatives, and around the same time I started this blog. We have run into each other at several events, meetings and more. Just recently she curated a show that I am participating in at Rehab Tavern…Doubles…that opens on February 12th. I figured it was about time that I got to know this lady better so here goes!
Heather initially was inspired to create art by her high school art teacher. It also helped that her parents have always supported and encouraged her to be herself and to be an artist. She’s always been drawn to creating and appreciating art, enjoying looking at a work of art and being able to see the process involved in making it.
Heather studied fine art and obtained a degree in art education at Bowling Green State University in 1997. In 1999, she was hired by Mansfield City schools where she teaches art to some amazing and talented kids. She’s taught in almost every elementary building throughout the school district during her 16 year career. Traveling from classroom to classroom based out of an art cart was how she taught until 2014, encouraging each and every student to believe that they were artists. Then in 2014, she began teaching seventh and eighth middle school students, and ‘has enjoyed watching these young students grow and blossom as I help fine tune some of their great skills on their journey to the high school.’ She often tells her students that creativity is intelligence having fun. She’s also been working toward beautification of the school building through murals with the school district has
featuring her efforts on the district web page tygerpride.
She continually puts long hours into this passion and love of the arts, often being found in her garage workshop from the time she wakes up till the time she goes to bed. She states that she has been welcomed by creative people in Columbus who have been very inspiring as well as encouraging. In that regard, she definitely lives the life of an artist and very much appreciates the lifestyle that encompasses it. She thinks that by being a practicing artist in her own right, she is better able to inspire her student artists. I enjoy the process of making art. Starting with an idea from within, to physically create what wasn’t there before, to a thought brought to physical life.
About 2 years ago, she became very active with Cap City Creatives and is now on the steering committee. Additionally, she is very involved in the Franklinton Arts District as actively involved tenant at 400 West Rich and is a member of The Big Local Arts Tent committee for the Columbus Arts Festival. Upon finding the great art and artists of the Franklinton community, she felt ‘at home’, for the first time finding a community of artists that truly welcomed her. And in that regard, she’s very thankful to have been shown the ropes by some of Franklinton’s greatest arts leaders.
But that isn’t enough for this creative lady…Living and working in Mansfield, she decided to promote the arts in that city. She helped found an artist group in Mansfield called the Underground Mansfield Arts Collective last fall to give artists in the Mansfield area a chance share and express themselves as artists to other artists. One of my dreams is to aid in creating art scene, in Mansfield similar to the community in Franklinton. The support and encouragement she has felt in Franklinton is what she wants to bring to her hometown’s artists.
When asked to categorize her art, she stated that she works in almost all medias, enjoying painting, sculpting, drawing, and photography. Recently, she’s been working with relief sculpting in wood and adding mixed media to the sculptures ( found objects, nails, rusted metals, etc) Surreal, emotionally expressive, an air leading to the darker side of emotions we experience in life. A surreal journey through the emotional spirit of the human heart is how she describes her style.
Seeing others create and being around other creatives are very inspirational to her. Looking at the things around her and finding beauty in them. I see inspiration in the things others would discard and otherwise overlook.
Being a dedicated artist is very important to her. She works almost daily to improve what she’s creating, trying to better her techniques and skills in the discipline. During the last couple of years establishing credibility as an artist has been high on her list of accomplishments. Membership in CCC has been critical to meeting this goal. In that regard, she feels that CCC is a great way to get involved with the arts community here in town…they’re always looking for new members so get in touch at: http://capcitycreatives.com/
Heather sells her art mainly at Cap City Creatives events and Studio 228 at 400 West Rich Street where she shares a studio with Tona Pearson, Donna Estep, Ralph Walters, Randal Pearson, Daver Unger.In the near future she has several events with Cap City Creatives, including the February 12, Doubles Show Rehab Tavern (opening during Franklinton Friday) and Dark Love at Vanderelli Room. In March, CCC will have another show at Barrel on High, opening during Gallery Hop featuring the ‘best of’ the group. May and June will be busy for her with the Eco Chic Craftacular, AJ’s Cafe and the Arts Festival. Two solo shows are on the horizon too: April 8th at 400 West Rich during Franklinton Friday titled (W)Reckoning (her first solo show since 1996!!!) and July 8th at Rehab Tavern during Franklinton Fridays. And many more exciting events yet to come with this dynamically involved group!
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