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Theresa Bartol 

Contemplating Nature - April 28 - May 22, 2021

Theresa Bartol, The Path 30x30 oil on can
Theresa Bartol Universe 30x30 oil on can

In this group of paintings Theresa returns to the woods to explore Nature, its structure and its message. She continues her explorations of her vision of the Grand Fugue in which all we see and hear are repetitions of varying scales and forms. Theresa sees in Nature that each leaf has its own color or musical note and that the trees dance to the same music within the song. In the paintings she evokes that music through details and relationships that are inspired by her personal interior dance and relationship to Nature and the grand dance of life.


Theresa’s close relationship to Nature grows out of the development of her artistic path. Upon completion of a degree in mathematics and science at Brooklyn College, she knew she had more to explore. There she met Philip Pearlstein who invited her to take his painting classes. In Pearlstein’s classes she rediscovered the excitement of the woods of her childhood. He encouraged her to go on painting and under his mentorship completed a BA and MFA in Fine Arts. Next, she found another world of pure joy at the New York Studio School where she spent three years studying with Guston, Resnick, McNeal, Cage and many New York artists from Hans Hofmann’s first classes here in America. During one of the visits Resnick made to her personal painting area, she heard the words, “You’re not free,” and she knew it was time to leave and explore the meaning of his words.


For the next six months she isolated herself in the woods. She recalls that painting by the same lake each day she found her family. Here the local birds sang their familiar song, the deer huddled close to her and the frogs in the lake came up to greet her as she painted. Her interior world came alive as she found herself responding to the light, sounds and the beauty of the natural world. This special universe of her childhood was the vision she was prepared to receive. Through math, science and art she now discovered the meaning of infinity in color, sounds, and the multitudinous variations of trees and foliage.


As Albert Einstein stated,  “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science.” As in the world of Emerson and Thoreau, the woods provide her with peace, quiet meditation and a spiritual home. This vision and experience continue to inspire her paintings and are felt by those who see them.  

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