Visit eight artist studios in scenic Hunterdon and Bucks Counties.
Jeanine Pennell's whimsical sculptures are born from her love of children’s books. Individually sculpted of kiln ﬁred paper clay, her figures hint at people she has known, and appear as illustrations that have stepped off the page.
Pennell is attracted to gesture drawing and considers each sculpture to be a small sketch in clay. She pulls out details in the clay to form a mouth or a nose and then builds the face from there. The forms are then bisque ﬁred in a kiln to ready them for glazing. Hand painted underglazes are applied and selectively wiped oﬀ to reveal facial details. The skin is left without a ﬁnal overglaze so that high ﬁre heat of the kiln can reveal subtleties in skin tones.
Phoebe Wiley started out as an impressionist, moving to ceramics when she wanted to work in three dimensions. The emphasis on gesture in the decoration of the ceramic work led to a more abstract approach in the paintings. “Regardless of medium or type of work, color and gesture are what I think about most.”
John McDevitt began his artistic journey with folk art wood carving. A package and product designer holding multiple patents, McDevitt worked for over twenty years in Corporate Design Strategy and Development for companies including Johnson & Johnson and Kraft Foods.
John enjoys demonstrating the fundamentals of steel fabrication, patination and bending steel in one’s bare hands in his New Hope, PA studio. “Steel is my partner in a journey to improve myself and connect with the world. Contemporary world events, my aikido practice, and stories of human evolution serve to inform me in my quest to create dynamic and organic works that reflect my spiritual path“.
Constance Bassett and David Cann met at an art foundry while pursuing the tools to manufacture and cast (their own) sculpture. As artists they formed a career as makers and repairers in the field of the decorative arts and objects conservation. The spectrum of their decorative arts focus includes a wide range of interest and expertise from the patination of the Statue of Liberty copper sheet metal repairs by P.A. Fiebiger Artisans in Metal, to being awarded the contract to conserve the William Penn Statue on City Hall an ongoing project from 1987 to 2017. Currently they have undertaken the restoration of an 1857 historic real estate project in Stockton, NJ.
Along with working for Moorland Studios, Inc. Constance and David have pursued their own personal creative endeavors and at times collaborating on pieces. Constance focuses primarily on representational stoneware sculpture and large format oil painting, and at times is experimenting with abstract painting. David is a designer and manufacturer of furniture and lighting as well as a nonrepresentational sculptor primarily working with fabricated or wrought iron.
Karen and Geoff Caldwell continue to pursue their passion of mixing many forms of glass into their pieces; fused, painted, beveled and stained glass. Karen’s fused botanical work explores many native flowers while Geoff continues to add new painting techniques to his hand-painted work. Many of these glass techniques are transformed into small windows and table top collectibles as well as custom windows. Bevels are always found among each item that Sunflower produces since it was the first love of the art form.
Katherine Hackl has expanded her pottery work to include a new etched porcelain process. This is a new technique for her that blends some of the characteristics of her traditional sgraffito carved work and her hand painted brush work, while creating a look that is altogether new. These pieces have a lovely light texture to them and a soft matte surface. They have images of meadows, trees, birds and berries, among many other themes. She has included a strong new blue and white series alongside the black and white, and the white on white work. She continues to do her traditional stoneware sgraffito work with many new patterns and images and has several new tile projects in the works.
Traditional quilting is a humble art form, and many beautiful quilts started out as scraps. By transforming old linens through her use of dyes, Teri is following in this early recycling tradition. The resulting hand-dyed fabric is then torn, cut and stitched into her original designs.
Teri has been in her New Hope studio for about 4 years, and has developed her modern folk art style throughout 30+ years of sewing and creating. An award winning quilter, Teri has focused on the use of color and free-motion quilting in her most recent work.
As a painter, printmaker and box maker, Annelies van Dommelen’s styles remain the same when crossing into each of these mediums. Whether she is working in paste paper which she creates to enwrap her boxes, or on monotypes which can easily become oil paintings, her signature remains the same but different. Annelies’ mark is transferable to all mediums lending importance to viewing the large body of her work. As one gets more experience in art making, the realization of technical confidence and freedom of expression becomes more automatic, and more of a conversation between the work and her voice.