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Nancy Van Deren--Artworks for Sale. BIDDINGTON'S ART GALLERY--More Paintings and Sculpture.

Nancy Van Deren 
painting Last Planting
Artists' Studio Visits at Biddington's Art Gallery

Nancy Van Deren
Abstract Painter

CREATIVE PROCESS visits the Northside (Brooklyn) studio of painter Nancy Van Deren.

Last Planting
Acrylic on canvas-- 2001

VAN DEREN: In my painting, I use landscape as a point of departure. While a painting may start with a specific reference, as it evolves the particulars tend to be lost in the course of letting the painting follow whatever path it needs to take.

Upstate Spring (left)
Van Deren with a watercolor of the same subject.

Nancy Van Deren  watercolor sequence

VAN DEREN: I pinned this series of watercolors to my studio wall to remind myself not to control the process too tightly--to let the space change and to allow the painting to develop its own structure.

Sequence of Watercolors in Van Deren's Studio
VAN DEREN: My work suggests the sensation of landscape or nature. I admire and was influenced by Helen Frankenthaler whose abstract paintings are considered to a have a loosely landscape quality.

Nancy Van Deren watercolor Grey 

VAN DEREN: My art has always been concerned with how one recognizes space and shapes. During the period that I worked at the Noguchi Museum, I sometimes gave tours to the blind. I would try to verbally duplicate the experience of seeing an object. To do this, I described what drews the eye first.

Van Deren Grey Skies--landscape watercolor inspired by Hudson River School
VAN DEREN: The convention of landscape painting has a horizon with a progression of space from front to back in the painting. This structure allows the eye to recognize space and shapes easily.

Nancy Van Deren painting Sea of Green
Sea of Green
Oil on Canvas
VAN DEREN: I've looked at 19th century paintings--Hudson River School landscapes--for their tonalities and massing of color.

Nancy Van Deren gouache 
on gessoed panelVAN DEREN: From the late 90's until last fall (autumn 2001) I worked on a series of paintings with ovals--egg-like or birdlike shapes. I did a whole series of work exploring the idea extensively. Most of the series was painted on small gessoed panels, I felt compelled to organize the space very tightly.

Van Deren Shoots and Oxbows
gouache on gessoed panel--1999

Nancy Van Deren gouache 
on gessoed panel VAN DEREN: What attracted me to the gessoed panels was their scale and their very sharp edges--they feel like they are framed already. I liked the containment of the small pieces.

Nancy Van Deren pentimento 

Van Deren Summer Warbler--detail of gouache on gessoed panel--1998

VAN DEREN: Sometimes I work on the panels for months. I'm using gouache--a fairly unstable medium. I can remove high color and excavate images--sometimes letting the pentimenti come through.

VAN DEREN: I started as a sculptor, mostly because the painting teacher wanted us to paint in thick impasto. (Van Deren cringes.) As a painter, I'm mostly self-taught which is a bit unusual considering I did teach painting at Berkeley and later at RIS- D.

Nancy Van Deren paintings

Nancy Van Deren Passage--oil on canvas --1999

VAN DEREN: I like to look at photography. The tonal systems of Ansel Adams, for instance, are very helpful is seeing how to make landscape. I also like the painters who worked during the development of abstraction people like Arthur Dove, Georgia O'Keefe and Charles Burchfield--he's tremendous. Of the more recent painters, I like Rothko, Agnes Martin and Rackstraw Downes. And in contemporary painters, I like to look at Andrea Bellage--she received a Guggenheim this year--and Amy Sillman.

Nancy Van Deren

Nancy Van Deren

View Nancy Van Deren's artworks for sale in
Price Range: $300-$3000

Exhibitions of Van Deren's paintings (abbreviated list):
1998--OK Harris Gallery (NYC)
1997--AIR Gallery (NYC)
1997--Joe Rain Gallery (Dublin)
1996--Parrish Art Museum (Southampton, NY)
1996--Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation (also grant recipient)
1979-1985--Sarah R. Rentschler Gallery (NYC)
1972 & 1974--Whitney Museum Annual (NYC)

Van Deren Teaching & Lectures (abbreviated list):
The Isamu Noguchi Museum 1993-2001
Sarah Lawrence College--1999 guest artist lecture
Rhode Island School of Design--1998 winter session
University of California, Berkeley--1974-1975



CREATIVE PROCESS at Biddington's is designed as a forum for watching art in the making. Usually, this process happens in the privacy of the artist's studio. At BIDDINGTON'S--Contemporary Art Gallery & upmarket, online art & antiques auctions--we find it interesting to witness the steps leading to the end product and to hear the artists speak about their work in the relaxed surroundings of their own studios.
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