Autobiography in Painting
Instructor: Sarah Stolar
10 Sessions / Tuesdays, June 4–August 13, no class June 11
Time: 6:30–9:30 pm
In this course students will engage in a survey of one’s self as a means of informing a semester-long series of paintings. By turning inward for source material, artists are able to produce authentic and powerful imagery without the sense of feeling contrived. This identity-driven work can produce cathartic experiences for the artist as well as reveal the inner workings of the psyche, transforming a life experience into artistic expression. Traditional and straight-forward self-portraits will begin the investigation into each student’s life story; however as the course progresses, students will be asked to push the boundaries beyond obvious representation, even obliterating the figure if necessary. Conceptual issues to be addressed include ego, cultural identity, biography, family, memory, obsessions, collections, metaphorical imagery, and narrative. All avenues of painting one’s autobiography will be explored, including (but not limited to) the figure, still-life, text, abstraction, and formal qualities such as color, texture, and composition. Historical and contemporary artists who use their life as a theme will be discussed; books, slides, and video will be presented regularly. In addition to creating several paintings, students will research one artist, keep a journal, and create a handmade sketchbook.
Some drawing/painting experience is recommended.
Sarah Stolar has an MFA in New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute and BFA in Painting from the Art Academy of Cincinnati. She is a painter, multimedia, video, and performing artist whose work is narrative, autobiographical, figurative, and abstract. Selected exhibitions include Currents 2011 Santa Fe, FADA Los Angeles Art Fair, Red Dot Art Fair NY, Kennedy Art Museum in Athens, OH, and the Carnegie Center for the Arts in Covington, KY. Stolar's paintings are represented by the Bohemian Gallery in Kansas City, Los Angeles, and Montevideo. She is also a company dancer with UpSwing Aerial Dance Company in Berkeley, and the costume designer for Annie Sprinkle.