Carolyn Mackin among the many works of engaging art in her studio.
By Audrey Anderson
Hometown Weekly Correspondent
Over 20 talented artists working in a variety of media and styles exhibited their works as part of Wellesley Women Artisans’ Open Studios Tour on October 13. The works were exhibited in seven homes in Wellesley, and the artists were present to meet the public, provide information about their work, and answer questions.
At 201 Weston Road, Carolyn Mackin, Vani Sayeed, and Julia Purdy exhibited diverse works throughout the comfortable, light-filled home.
Mackin displayed her upstairs studio, which was filled with numerous paintings that showed the progression in her work. Her earlier paintings featured broad brush strokes and rectangular shapes in bright colors, giving an impression of cityscapes or architectural elements. Later, she moved on to a looser style with less specific shapes, giving an overall impression or feeling related to travel and other experiences. Currently, she is exploring a promising magic carpet theme relating to enlightenment through travel experiences and yoga.
Vani Sayeed is an interior decorator who also loves to express herself through making art. She showed several works created by an intaglio process of etching copper plates and making prints in several different versions, arrangements, and combinations. Some of her prints also included stitching. Sayeed also showed abstract paintings with thick directional brush strokes and bits of texture.
Purdy was an art history major and an art educator before delving into creating art herself. Her paintings featured blue strokes with touches of white, pink, and yellow. Like Mackin, she included architectural elements at the outset, and then loosened up her abstract style to emphasize shapes. Her technique of using a credit card to swipe paint across the canvas creates rhythmic movement in her pieces that is compelling.
At 10 Greenlawn Avenue, Laura Robert and G. Wong displayed their work.
Laura Robert creates dynamic collages with pieces of old book covers affixed to thick pieces of plywood. She was inspired by an exhibit of recovered tile that she saw in Sicily. Robert loves the old-time, worn, and faded colors and fabrics of the book covers, and she also incorporates inscriptions, inner mesh from bindings, and other artifacts that she finds in books. An avid recycler with an original imagination, Laura also showed a graceful sculpture she created from plastic pieces associated with food packaging.
Lastly, G. Wong hung and draped her intricately pieced-and-stitched quilts all around the cozy home. She utilized brightly colored fabrics with some with unexpected, effective color choices, cut into quite small pieces and stitched intricately. Some quilts had back sides that were markedly different from the front side, but the stitching worked well for both designs. The beautiful textiles gave visitors a comfortable feeling, with a few also provoking thought. At the entrance to a back room, she hung a sign saying that one of the quilts in the room might be offensive. Inside hung a quilt with raw language roughly rubber stamped on it. G. Wong said she was reacting to personal anger she felt, as well as the trend of global warming, among other things. She is an artist who is courageous, honest, and true to her vision; it is applaudable. Amazingly, G. Wong says that she visualizes her quilts before she even starts cutting, and she works either without creating patterns or by creating quick, small sketches of her ideas.
Aside from offering attendees an opportunity to understand the process behind the works of art on display, the Open Studio Tour provided tangible proof of the abundant talent present in the community.