There is a new bloom at Rose Center Council for the Arts, and her name is Charlotte Brindley. Charlotte is a native of Nashville, and comes to Rose Center with a background in art and historic preservation. She received both her B.A. in Art History and M.A. in Folk Studies/Historic Preservation from Western Kentucky University, and has worked at museums such as the Kentucky Museum in Bowling Green, and the Hermitage in Nashville. She is the new Arts Education Coordinator at Rose Center, and she is already overseeing a new crop of artistically-inclined summer campers, like the Young Picasso’s who just finished up a week-long course of fine art with guest teaching artist, Carol Rouse.
An exceptional artist herself, Charlotte has been making art since she has been able to hold a pencil. Charlotte’s work is heavily influenced by various periods in history, especially the Italian Renaissance and the Gothic illuminated manuscripts of Medieval Europe. She enjoys creating a range of work, from large-scale and intricately detailed oil-paintings complete with gold leaf, down to tiny watercolors, which are often gifted to delighted friends. Charlotte’s work is impressive in both skill and technique. For the local community, Charlotte’s work is poised to serve as a bridge to explore the works of gothic masters such as Hildegard of Bingen.
Regarding her work, Charlotte explains, “I hearken back to the Gothic and Italian Renaissance eras of art history for my creations. Monks in medieval monasteries created ultramarine blue from crushed lapis lazuli, and there was always something about that violet blue against a gold background that appealed to me. In some of my paintings, I create works inspired by the tiny pages of illuminated books on a large scale. Other pieces are more straightforward and symbolic. So by breathing life into the illuminated pages of the ancient past, I find inspiration to explore the realms of my imagination.”
Every artist has her own process of creation, and Charlotte describes hers this way, “Most of my works are painted with oil and use gold leaf in the background. I do a little planning, but the vast majority of my paintings are improvised and made up on the spot. Sometimes the best ideas occur when there is little preparation, things that come from deep within my subconscious. I create things that are multi-layered and abstract in meaning, though their appearances are highly detailed and representational”.
For the, the viewers of her work, this exploration is exquisite with richly hued tones, fine detail, and all that gold shining back at the viewers. The awesome and disciplined patience, which is illuminated by the even the smallest elements in her work can leave the viewer fighting back feelings of inadequacy. However, all the best artists leave us feeling that way—humbled by the wonder of the work.
Rose Center is introducing their newest staff member to the Lakeway community by hosting her work in a solo exhibit during the month of July. Regarding the exhibit, Charlotte says, “I explore themes of injustices and impermanence, but also passion and joy. In the end, my works are an extension of myself and how I see the world around me.” The exhibit, appropriately entitled, “Introducing Charlotte Brindley” opens the first week of July. The artist reception will take place on July 12th from 5 – 7 PM in Rose Center’s Edith Davis Gallery, where folks will have an opportunity to meet Charlotte and discuss her work.