Congratulations to Ann Marie Coolick, one of our featured artists at the gallery, in adorning the cover of Elan Magazine. We find that Ann Marie is an artist who's impasto paintings will compliment any wall in your home and her impressive "palette stroke" on her canvas speaks of her love for her three boys. You will see they fill her life with as much meaning as the canvas she colors.
Below is the article written by Evelyn Gardett
Atmospherics in Impasto
By: Evelyn Gardett
Artist: Ann Marie Coolick
There are freshly baked cookies on Ann Marie Coolick's counter. Overflowing with molten lava peanut butter and mountains of chocolate chips, they are just as chunky and sculptural as the layered paintings she forges from palette knives and acrylic paint–and they are likely to be just as popular.
If her baking borrows from her artistic style, then the reverse is certainly true: having three young boys under the age of five has revolutionized Ann Marie's approach to her art. Her painting schedule follows theirs: she paints in the morning, during the children's naptime and when they're in preschool down the street from their Crystal City home. She paints quickly, often with bolder colors and more energy. To this end, Ann Marie works with acrylic paint, which dries faster. As she says, "I actually like that look: the looseness of the [palette] knife work."
Ann Marie began painting in during high school, and her college art career began at James Madison University. After her freshman year, she transferred to Virginia Tech and went on to graduate summa cum laude with a B.A. in studio art and a B.S. in marketing management.
She began painting in a realist manner, working with oil and spray paint and creating detailed work with palette knives. A summer trip to London during college brought her to the Tate Modern and introduced her to "The Origin of the Great Bear" by Frank Auerbach. The work is a very loose interpretation of Titian's mythological painting "Tarquin and Lucretia," which depicts a country scene viewed through a window of trees. The painter's textural use of paint and wild abstractions inflamed Ann Marie's burgeoning creativity. Although Ann Marie's color palette tends much more natural than Auerbach's searing hues, the early influence of the artist is apparent. Like Auerbach, Ann Marie often employs large patches of one color throughout a work to imbue it with a sense of atmosphere, punctuating that with lines and dots of color that suggest tree branches, stems, leaves and flowers.
When Ann Marie was expecting her first son Joseph, she put painting away for a while, and, when she returned, she found her style rapidly evolving. It was at this time that she switched to acrylic paint, smearing it across the canvas with a palette knife. Her works are so textural that, seen from the side, they have visible mountains of paint.
In addition to creating commissioned works, Ann Marie exhibits frequently. She has had shows throughout the mid-Atlantic region–the Arlington Arts Center, the Center for the Arts at the Candy Factory and the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, as well as the Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen Arts and Capital One in Richmond. From 2004 to 2009, she was a Resident Artist at the Arlington Arts Center, where she regularly had solo exhibitions and volunteered.
Ann Marie enjoys working with acrylic because it allows her to create many versions of the same work. Each version represents a move from real to abstract. "Beach Umbrellas" is the abstract reworking of the realistic "Hazy Days," an inviting representation of airy beach umbrellas perched high above the sand. In "Hazy Days," the roots of abstraction are already present in the predominance of shapes: a blue rectangle of ocean runs parallel to a white sky and beige beach, intersected by triangular beach umbrellas. The colors are primary and strong, like the stripes of a beach ball.
The move to abstraction reveals a nuanced palette, as if the picture has been turned on its side to reveal a prism of colors between the basic ones. The beach umbrellas are now pentagons seen from above. They merge and overlap in unexpected ways as if a giant wave has swept over the canvas, jumbling all the elements into a pile of line and color.
Of course, this evolution from real to abstract is never-ending, and Ann Marie repeatedly reworks old paintings. Her husband sometimes intervenes with his tempering influence: "Again?!?"
Ann Marie's attic studio is reminiscent of the Parisian studio of a starving artist. A single bare bulb illumines her canvas, and the dappled sunlight streams in through a small window. Finished works are stacked sideways along the walls, and her palette knives sit on a stand next to her canvas, almost unrecognizable due to the globs of hardened paint around the handles. Her easel also bears witness to her medium: the edges are covered in rainbow stalagmites formed by years of discarded paint.
The light streams into her studio through the bamboo trees that line her yard. While she has to keep the prolific bamboo from creeping onto her property, she doesn't keep them from creeping into her artwork.
Ann Marie incorporates all the parts of her life into her art: the uplifting and mundane, the transcendent and painful. This practice began when Ann Marie was a young artist. After losing her baby brother to cancer, she created a series of pictures depicting him and his doctor, as well as other scenes that were meaningful to her during that difficult time. The catharsis helped her to heal, and art has played a therapeutic role for her ever since. "I'm extremely introverted," she says, "and painting is a therapeutic way to remain calm amongst this craziness."
Ann Marie's work may be seen at The Cooley Gallery in Leesburg.
shop her page at our gallery here http://www.thecooleygallery.mybigcommerce.com/ann-marie-coolick/
We are pleased to announce one of our visiting artist, Chris Carr, who has agreed to teach classes at, The Gallery School of Art.
Chris is a Maryland native who has learned much of his craft while a student at Gov. Thomas Johnson High School in Frederick, Maryland studying with renowned watercolor painter Barry Richardson. After years of working as a artist/designer for The Washington Post, Chris began focusing more on his painting skills. With each painting, he further develops his talent at creating photo-like watercolor images through meticulous attention to detail. Chris continues to search for images of interest as he drives along the regions roads, stopping to take pictures with a camera he always carries with him. Focusing on images of days gone by, including historic buildings and structures, town scenes, churches, lighthouses, old cars, trucks and tractors, Chris’s realistic depictions which can take anywhere from a couple of weeks to a couple of months to complete, draw attention at art festivals and galleries all over the region. Although Chris has only been painting professionally for 6 years he has gained a growing following of fans, customers and collectors looking to add a Chris Carr original painting or print to their collection. Many customers have commissioned Chris to paint their farms, lodges and other rural scenery. Chris’ studio is located at his home in Myersville, MD and includes a customer gallery and dedicated studio and framing room.
The Cooley Gallery is pleased to announce that we will be offering
"Secrets of Great Narrative Writing: For Novelists and Memoir Writers"
A 3-Part Writing Workshop by International Award-winning Writer and Writing Coach David Hazard.
Since 1979, I've been launching new writers into the publishing world.
I love coaching and teaching as much as I love writing and what better venue in teaching the art of writing then at the Cooley Gallery.
In this 3-part series David will instruct you in the art of storytelling - the techniques used by great writers to create great short stories, novels and memoirs. (Past attendees of David's workshops gone on to win cash awards in the Loudoun County Library System's Summer Short Story Competition. See the Loudoun County Library website for details, and consider entering your work!)
Part 1 ( DATE TBD ) covers the secrets of creating compelling plots and characters. Your storytelling abilities - whether you're writing a short piece or a novel - will increase rapidly once you know the secrets of "under-structure" you will learn in this session.
Part 2 ( TBD ) covers creating great scenes and dialogues. There is an art to building small incidents that lead to captivating scenes and powerful dialogue, treated in this session.
Part 3 ( TBD ) adds to your skills the importance of understanding "camera work" - which is the art of creating powerful images that empower your writing and live in the minds of your readers.
David Hazard, the instructor, is founder of ASCENT, an international coaching business, with writer-clients from Kathmandu to Johannesburg to Dublin to San Diego.
We have not yet locked in a date for these classes as we are finalizing our opening date. If you are thinking of writing a book, blog or anything of the like this class is certainly in your wheelhouse. Please contact, The Cooley Gallery directly at, 703-779-4639 or email firstname.lastname@example.org should you have any questions.
Thank you all for coming to our Canvas and Cork event held at, The Greene Turtle. We did things a little differently this time, there were two subject matters for attendees to choose from. It was enjoyable to see just the free range bug bit some free spirits to go and paint their own subject matter. The is one of the many reasons we have this event, to tap into that inner child who is willing to push the boundaries of comfort zones. We are never disappointed in the work your soul paints on your canvas, we hope you aren't either. We believe this an exceptional way to get to know our clients outside The Gallery. We hope to see you at a future event with some of our other talented artists once our new building has opened. Until then, check back frequently to see when our next Canvas and Cork will be scheduled.
Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. ~Scott Adams
We were contacted by an Oakton High School Art Teacher about possibly coming out for a demonstration. Chris, of course, was eager to jump at the chance. If there is one thing he enjoys more than throwing, it is teaching young artist to enjoy it too. We packed up and drove our short trip to Oakton High School and sat with some pretty amazing students in the Art program there. Chris settled in at the wheel and began talking about centering clay, molding clay and creating a masterpiece with your hands. Chris walked the kids through the basics of throwing, trimming and firing. It is always such a joy to see such interest in those who are young and hungry to not only learn, but create art. As we watched him seamlessly throw a mug, a bowl (well sort of) and a bottle. Each piece was followed by an expression of joy from the kids, priceless. It was a day of creativity, learning and lots of laughter. That is what we like to call at The Gallery a "slam dunk" of a dream day. Thank you Ms. Conley and the many faculty and students who were present for the demonstration. You all were a such a pleasure to meet.
Ken Sullins is one of the few photographers we have at The Cooley Gallery. Ken has recently had the honors of adorning the cover of Elan Magazine (Celebrating the Arts edition November 2014). We would like to share the article that was written so well, about Ken and his works. If you are interested in any pieces please contact the gallery at, email@example.com. Please join us in congratulating Ken not only a job well done but well deserved.
The Catoctin Holiday Art Tour is a self guided tour of 17 seventeen artists in 6 Lovettsville studios. Visit all the studios for a weekend of beautiful scenery, friendly folks, and local art. This relaxing driving tour leads visitors down some of western Loudoun's prettiest country roads, to homes and studios in the thriving artists' community of Lovettsville. Visitors meet the artists where they work and have the opportunity to buy affordable art and gifts in advance of the holiday shopping rush.
Cooley Gallery resident Artist, Amy Manson Pottery will be featured in the Art At Garden Corner Studio again this year for the Catoctin Holiday Art Tour. Offering a wide selection of functional and decorative pottery perfect for Thanksgiving and Holiday gift giving. Jill Evans-Kavaldjian will have a great selection of paintings, prints and cards, and Mary Kennesson ("Masuke" Jewelry) will have her fun and funky fiber and jewelry available as well.
New this year, is a collaborative project between Jill and myself - "Happy Accidents" ceramic jewelry and holiday ornaments. We've been having a ton of fun using creative textures, and even fused glass for our ceramic pendant necklaces and holiday ornaments!
We hope you can help us support Amy and her work, even if out of the gallery. Please drop by this Saturday and Sunday to shop local, visit the wonderful studio, and enjoy a glass of wine or cider and light refreshments. We will also have art activities for kids, and a warm bon fire in the afternoons. If you are unable to attend, please visit our site for Amy's pottery. http://www.thecooleygallery.mybigcommerce.com/amy-manson/
All studios open 10am - 6pm both days!
Stop #1 Art At Garden Corner Studio
38615 Morrisonville Road
Lovettsville, VA 20180
First Friday Featured Artist, Ann Marie Coolick, shares what goes into her paintings. We often find people don't always understand the time or passion that goes into creating. We hope this video sheds some light on just how much of both is dedicated to a finished product. Please come by this Friday and see all her works, they will be showing throughout the month of September.
It isn't every day a traveler stops to appreciate art, more specifically in the Philadelphia International Airport. We found this blog by David P, of Good things by David, http://www.goodthingsbydavid.com/2011/12/ryan-j-greenheck.html captures exactly what we find exceptional in our featured artist Ryan Greenheck. Ryan was in the gallery during June there are still a few items available that can be purchased online.
Ryan J. Greenheck - It's not everyday you come across great works of art while traveling through an airport. On a recent trip I decided to take a stroll through the international terminal at Philadelphia International Airport while waiting for my flight. Much to my surprise I discovered a wonderful exhibit of ceramic artwork. Upon closer inspection, I realized that I was looking at unique vessels with some very compelling glazes & styling. I love ceramics of all types, but the ones that caught my complete attention were those of artist, Ryan J. Greenheck. Take a closer look at these magnificent pieces or art.
This is his exhibit at the airport. A small portion of his oeuvre.
The brief artist bio states: Ryan J. Greenheck uses the potter's wheel to create extremely precise forms that are both functional and beautiful. His repertoire includes vases, jars and teapots along with complete dinner sets - plates, bowls and cups. Greenheck received his Master of Fine Arts from New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University.
The giant urn is stunning; it's called Large Honey Sprig Covered Jar. I love how the finial on the lid echoes the shape of the actual vessel. The ringed base anchors the urn beautifully. The warm, earthy glazing is absolutely amazing. This decorative yet functional teapot is one of my favorite pieces from the exhibit. I love the dark tones as well as the shape.
I know that art is subjective and that tastes differ greatly among each & everyone of you, but I think one can definitely admire the technique and use of color found in these choice pieces. Ryan J. Greenheck does offer his work to the general public and I encourage you to visit his website for pricing and more information. By the way, if you happen to find yourself at Philadelphia International Airport, his exhibit can be seen in the corridor between terminal A & B. I hope you enjoyed discovering Greenheck's artwork just as much as I did.
Posted by David P. at 12:26 PM