The Statesboro Regional Art Association recently debuted a collection of artwork at an exhibit called "The Artful Copy" with a reception and viewing at the Honey Bowen Building.
Organized by Carol Duggar and Carolyn Morgan, the exhibit was a culmination of the association's "Copying the Masters" project, which began more than a year ago. Members of the Art Association spent time researching various artists to decide just which master painter they planned to imitate.
Shari Morris, Statesboro Regional Art Association President, said that once an artist was chosen, participants learned much about the artist and his or her artwork and then followed the rules of copying master painters to create renditions of master paintings.
Though the group meets once a month for demonstrations or workshops and hosts a quarterly showing, this event marked the first time that many of the longtime members had actually seen other members' work.
Member Barbara Whitlock said she first fell in love with painting after she retired from teaching preschool and took a watercolor class.
"It just takes you away," the artist said.
Whitlock said she worked on her pieces for three to four months. She chose to paint two pictures in the style of Georgia O'Keeffe.
"Georgia O'Keeffe so perfectly depicts two of my favorite subjects: flowers and the desert landscape," Whitlock said. "Growing up in California, I came to appreciate the beauty of the Western deserts and their subtle differences and changes in seasons. Flowers have also been one of my main subjects of interest since I began painting over 10 years ago."
In a plaque that accompanied Ida Waters' depiction of John Fredrick Herring Sr.'s "Pharaoh's Horses," Waters stated: "I wanted to copy this work because my husband's great grandmother had copied it and we have her badly damaged canvas displayed in our home. It was a popular painting in the late 1800's and early 1900's. A framed engraving referred to as ‘horse heads' was sold for 75 cents in the 1902 Sears Roebuck and Company catalog. In 1986, the original was auctioned at Christie's in London for $445,500."
Artist Julie Bressler chose to imitate Vincent van Gogh's "Café Terrace at Night."
"I chose to copy this work because of the fantastic colors and lines, which certainly challenged my ability," she said. "I'd love to spend an evening there."
Charter member Laura Aziz, with the group since its inception in 1974, was in attendance and said she was thrilled that the downtown Averitt Center for the Arts will host the exhibit beginning Jan. 9.
The 15 copyists who presented work felt they had gained valuable experience and knowledge from the project and say they look forward to sharing their work at the Averitt Center.