During the month of June, Art & Soul Gallery is honored to present an exhibit of masterworks in oils by Penny Simmons. Previously known and admired for her breathtaking watercolors, Penny has now transitioned into oil painting in the tradition of the Old Masters.
“My journey as an artist began 25 years ago with watercolor,” she explains. “Watercolor is a challenging medium with many limitations. The accomplished watercolor artist can achieve amazing results and the contrasting values, the darks, playing against the white of the paper can be powerful. While I enjoyed the serendipity of watercolor, I felt restricted. The lack of control and inability to achieve the detail I loved led me to change mediums.”
Penny began painting in oils 18 months ago and became obsessed with learning the techniques of the Old Masters. “I longed to produce paintings like I saw in the Louvre – grand in size and detail, smoothly textured with thinly applied layers of paint and varnished to a hard finish that was meant to last for centuries. Paintings done in this style create the translucency and depth of color that had been missing in my watercolor paintings. I am inspired by the paintings of the Barbizon School painters of mid-19th century France and I am moved to tears by the paintings of Jean-François Millet, Théodore Rousseau, and Charles-François Daubigny. It is the amazing work of these great masters that inspires me.”
Today, the same deep emotions Penny expressed in her watercolors emerge in the evocative translucent beauty of the Old Masters’ style of her oil painting. “My goal as an artist has always been that of an interpreter of nature; to breathe life onto a one-dimensional surface so that the painting evokes nostalgia and romance,” Penny says. “I aspire to record life’s memories, the seasons, and the many moods of nature. The challenge of my work is to elicit emotions, and that is the essence of what I do. It is who I am as an artist.”
Penny and her husband, Charles, retired to Medford in 2013, with their beloved cat named Lilly, who often appears in her paintings, their darling Bichon named Beau and their Cockatoo named Kaspir who shares her studio.
We invite you to visit Art & Soul Gallery during June to see these incredible works of art for yourself.
May 29 – July 1, 2018
Please join Penny Simmons for her Reception:
a Festive Celebration of Fine Art and Conversation
with Music by Matt Dorris
on Friday June 1, 2018 from 5-8 PM