Born in Glendive, Montana, raised in Santa Monica, CA and living extended periods of time in San Francisco, Lima and Mexico, Linda has many diverse memories and experiences. During the 14 years of her life in Oaxaca, Mexico she was immersed in the unreal real realm of Indigenous art where the normal limitations of human and animal behaviors do not apply. During these years she was influenced by the art of Rufino Tamayo, Rodolfo Morales, Francisco Toledo, and Frida Kahlo as well as the paintings of indigenous Oaxacan artists who worked in the Taller de Artes Plásticas Rufino Tamayo from 1978-1984: Eddie Martinez, Fernando Olivera, Justina Fuentes, Maximino Javier, Amador Montes, Guillermo Brena and later, “Willie” Guillermo Olguín.
Twenty years later, in 2007, after retiring from teaching and school administration, Linda began painting and took her first formal classes. Watercolorists Joyce Laws, Betty Berteaux and Christine Shackel were her first teachers in California. In 2008-09 Linda studied oil painting in Paris at the Academie Port Royal in a studio art course with Jean-Maxime Relange and Dina Pickard. In 2009 she began exploring Acrylic painting in Oaxaca and in a class with Robert Burridge at Folsom Community College. In 2010 she returned to Oaxaca, Mexico and entered an advanced studio arts class with Guillermo Breña and in 2011 took an “artes plásticas” and drawing course at the Taller Rufino Tamayo in Oaxaca. After returning to Davis in 2012, Linda studied with David Lowbenberg, privately and at University Art, and with Betty Berteaux at the Davis Art Center. In 2013 she was accepted into the Different Strokes Art Critique Group.
Linda is interested in painting the out of ordinariness of ordinary things, and of exaggerating things that are around but not recognized: the juxtaposition of perceived important and the non-important. American artist Melissa Miller, Chilean artist Gonzalo Cienfuegos and UC Davis artist Roy de Forest have recently influenced her paintings in this area. She sometimes takes on the painting of individual plants or animals as an opportunity to explore and understand their uniqueness.
She exhibited in 2008 at the Chen Building and is presently showing her work with the Different Strokes art group at the Tsao Gallery in Davis, CA.
The two decades that I lived in Mexico and Latin America have greatly influenced my sense of colors and my perception of reality. Before my exposure to the vivid colors, unusual animals and plants, extreme landscapes, and expressive people in unexpected situations in Latin America, I would have had a hard time to paint the world as a surreal & magical place.
I first became interested in painting and art in the 70’s while living in Oaxaca, Mexico where all these vibrant colors, animals, plants and curious situations were visible on a daily basis in the extraordinary, ever surprising local art. For 14 years these creative pieces were my portal to art and in 2007, when I began painting, they permeated every surface I painted and still have a dominant influence on my work. My paintings, now, are a mixture of the themes that interest me today and those intense colors, those characters and situations and the memories of the experiences I had. These painting usually start with a single figure or line and then the painting begins to demand: more paint, other colors and forms, light, a shadow, a bird, a dog, a person until it is finished. Often a story emerges, as the work develops, which surprises me because it was not the plan.
Animals and plants are paramount in my art and have always been important to me. I believe animals reflect our emotions and can often signal another perspective on a specific situation, reminding us that there are multiple versions of a reality. Animals also give me the opportunity to introduce humor into a painting as they do in our lives. Painting plants on the other hand is my counter balance. It requires a focused and introverted meditation on the individual plant to understand its structure, form, and movement, to be able to replicate it on the drawing surface.
My first paintings were in watercolor but while taking a studio art course in Paris I was encouraged to worked in oil, which I love. In Mexico, in recent classes, I was won over by the variety of colors, textures, and the versatility of Acrylic, and I use it today. Of late, my work includes some tissue paper collages, charcoal, India ink, and some new - previously rejected - colors have been added to my palette and I am challenging myself to use them.
I hope my art connects the viewers to some experience they once had or causes them to stop, look at the forms, consider the color or possibly wonder: What is going on in that painting? ... And, perhaps smile.