Last week I had the pleasure of sitting down with my friend and fellow studio artist Delainey Barclay, to talk about her art. Her solo show in the Elizabeth Denison Hatch Gallery at the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts continues through April 25th.
I asked Delainey how she chose to became an artist. She said her Mom is an artist and as a kid she was always encouraged to be creative and make things. When her Mom was making something she gave Delainey and her siblings their own supplies and they would be building right alongside her. She said birthday and Christmas gifts were usually art supplies. Secondly she credits her high school art teacher for knowing she was going to be an artist before she knew. Upon first meeting her he proclaimed her future was destined because of her awesome name. He encouraged her to apply to Art College and helped with every phase of the application process.
I asked her how she came to be using the materials she’s using in her artwork. She said the aforementioned art teacher introduced her to oil painting and using a palette knife. That early experience of painting with a palette knife is the reason she still likes to create texture in her painting with the application of thick paint. She also enjoys taking ordinary supplies that can be readily purchased at a hardware store and transforming them into something beautiful. A spool of string she bought 10 years ago at a garage sale has turned up in many different pieces.
In her show titled 100% Humidity, Delainey says she wanted to consider not just the paintings but the space around the paintings as well. The oil paintings in soft soothing colors include silhouettes of animals seemingly unaware of the viewer’s presence. She says she was striving for simplicity and beauty, like a really deep breath.
Her inspiration for the work is the Brandywine Valley on a hot and humid summer day. A day when the air is so thick you can see and feel it. The string spheres represent that air, hanging above your head and floating in front of the canvases.
Delainey talked about a painting by Tom Friedman with a full size shovel attached to it, that she saw years ago leaving a strong impression on her, and also Robert Rauschenburg.
You can see more of her work here.