This body of work began sometime in the mid 1990's, as an experiment, seeing if I could adhere a dress to a canvas and create a painting over all the textures. "Dress painting" is a term I came up with to explain these when I simply couldn't think of anything better. Over the years they have evolved, with new elements of collage being added. Dress patterns, photographs, and embroidery all appear from time to time, as well as lino block prints, rubber stamps and gold leaf. I will use this space to explore the beginnings of this series, as well as showing my latest work. If the piece is available for sale you'll find the price at the bottom. Free shipping in the U.S. Contact me at kallencole@aol.com to purchase.

Would you like to see my full website? Head over to KathrineAllenColeman.com

Monday, January 25, 2010


Well here she is! I enjoyed the idea of setting myself a deadline, that's one way to quit staring at a blank canvas and actually get working on it. She was finished late yesterday afternoon, but there was no place for me to snap a picture as it was dark and pouring cats and dogs here in Georgia!
Attagirl is 20" square on a wrap around canvas, this is one of the very few times I kept the dress similar to it's original color, but the Wedgwood blue seemed to fit the composition. The "voice" for this piece came as I was walking between the studio and the house. Walking past the dogwood tree, a little chickadee started to holler at me for getting too close to the bird feeder. The whole idea of how nature pushes through, with trees setting buds in the cold of winter, and the tiniest birds surviving the storm, became the story I wanted to tell. That is tenacity, and truly deserving of an "attagirl." (I can still remember my Dad saying those words to me, it's amazing how one almost word can make you proud.)
So the tree branches in the background are from my dogwood, and although I don't think this is the same chickadee, this one was willing to pose. I love the transparent underpainting of the branches, which I cut into with almost opaque pale blue grey. And although the dress looks a similar color, it has several layers of paint on it as well, to deepen the shadows and make the high spots shine. Remember "attagirl" every time you weather a storm!

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