Articles

A View from the Easel

CHICAGO — The 90th installment of a series in which artists send in a photo and a description of their workspace. Want to take part? Submit your studio — just check out the submission guidelines.

Robert Stark, Susquehanna, Pennsylvania (site)

stark
My home and studio for the past 40 years is a converted general store and farm implement showroom in a rural village in Susquehanna County, PA. My family has lived and farmed here for some 200 years. In 1972 it was an abandoned wreck halfway between being torn down and saving, and the price was right. Having limited funds I repaired one of the 20 rooms every year. In 1995 a recently graduated Cornell architect, Rafael Viñoly Jr., designed a studio, 30 foot square with an 18 foot ceiling and high north facing windows. Adjoining rooms have painting racks, and another canvases, stretchers and tables covered with tubes of paint.
I’m at my best painting every day, I start early and work into the afternoon, once finished painting I stretch canvases or prepare grounds for future work. I tend to follow one idea as long as possible, alternating between working smaller during the winter and larger canvases in the warmer months.

Jean Bradbury, Seattle, Washington (site)

bradbury

My studio is the old garage behind my house. It was fine when I used to paint small canvases but lately my work has outgrown it. This painting is twelve feet tall and the ceiling is only seven feet. Fortunately my friend Barry invented this nifty roller system so I can paint one section at a time and then roll it up or down. It’s been working great!

Sarah Güsten-Marr, York, United Kingdom (site)

Sarah Gusten Marr

I am an artist living in the Vale of York in beautiful North Yorkshire and I would have to say that my studio is an extension of who I am. It was a blessing for me to find Dykelands Farm as it reminded me of my childhood summers in Bavaria. I designed and built the studio myself which was a dream come true because I knew I wanted space as my process requires me to work on several canvases at once.

For me, my studio offered a chance for me to re-start life through my art, but also inspired me to create a gallery space and art centre for emerging talent. Everything you see in this photo consists of memories of my travels and the people who have inspired me along the way.

My studio is proof that people and places are all connected and the art I create here is a chance to bring them all together.

Tom Johnston, Olympia, Washington (site)

johnston

The studio is a workplace for painting and works on paper. The main floor of this 22’ x 30’ space is multi-use and houses etching and litho presses, easels, tables, larger flat files, and works in progress. The back wall seen in the lower image is 12’ high. The space was designed to be flexible, where tools specific to a project or series could be moved into the central area depending on what is needed.

The loft, initially conceived of as a storage area, grew during the design process to facilitate an additional space dedicated to paper and curating. The loft has a work table illuminated by north light, flat files, a copy stand, and storage for framed artworks; the space beneath, in the beginning, housed the presses before a large, custom-made cabinet (work surface over paper storage shelves) was acquired.

The studio was designed for painting, printmaking, and housing tools and materials that support that practice. There is a set of high windows on the north wall, and track lights with led bulbs; the cement slab floor contains a radiant heat system that efficiently heats the studio.

There is a set of double doors for moving art, tools, and materials in and out; it opens onto a patio for working outside when weather permits. A seasonal creek runs close by most of the year while the cedar, redwood, and sequoia trees provide privacy and shade.

Gary Honig, Silver Spring, Maryland (site)

honig

Having moved from downtown DC into the woods, the influence of seasons is much more pronounced. The room has a bank of windows facing west so it’s afternoon light, but I regularly paint late into the night. I’m usually working on a large canvas or smaller pieces on paper. I include a lot of repurposing, using material that would normally be thrown out, in my work. I wanted to show the room as it is while I am working rather than when I find time to make it neat and tidy.

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