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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Friday, May 10, 2019 1 year ago

Come Together: Crealdé School of Art to host "Emerge" Exhibit Reception

The school's painting showcase will have an exhibit Friday, May 10.
by: Harry Sayer Black Tie Reporter

The Crealdé School of Art has a number of studio artists and fellowship artists who create a variety of paintings, sculptures and other artistic designs each year.

More than 10 of the school’s studio and fellowship artists will display their paintings from May 10 to Aug. 3 as part of  the Crealdé School’s “Emerge: Painting & Drawing Fellowship & Studio Artists” exhibit. There will be an opening reception at the school from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 10.

The school hosts a volunteer showcase each year; this year focuses on painting and drawing. The school’s fellowship program and studio artist program have mentored an average of 25 students per year for decades. 

“There’s no place like this,” said Barbara Tiffany, curator of exhibitions and painting and drawing program manager for the school. “The volunteers, the teachers, and the students all get a show here."

Deborah Umphrey

Mixed-media artist Deborah Umphrey, who specializes in acrylic and watercolor painting, has an affinity for animals and nature — and it’s clear in her work. 

The artist is debuting her “Morning Hunt” piece at the Emerge exhibit, an ethereal painting of a landscape with barred owls resting above a reflective body of water. It’s the latest in a series of nature-focused paintings that include flamingoes, manatees, deer and other critters from the New Orleans native, who has been part of the school for years and helps teach the youth programs. Umphrey’s process involves sketching ideas that she then transfers to the canvas. Her pieces can take up to three weeks to finish. 

“Morning Hunt’s” inspiration comes from Umphrey’s home in Winter Springs and her mornings watching owls peer back at her from a nearby creek. A common theme in her work is water and reverse images in its reflection, something that is both tricky and rewarding for Umphrey to convey.

“I like to paint upside down; it’s definitely a brain-teaser,” Umphrey said. “I go to sleep at night, and I think what I’m going to do. There’s times I actually get up (to paint).”

Joan Sanchez

The inspiration for Joan Sanchez’s paintings, which will be on display Friday, is obvious. The painter has captured people and landscapes from Crealdé, from the outdoor garden to indoor craft-making. The landscape paintings focus on Crealdé’s specific scenery, while the people paintings capture instructors in mid-motion while working on their craft. 

He uses lighting in particular to capture a moment and feeling for each of his paintings. A piece depicting a Crealdé metalworks instructor has the man lit from behind as he is mid-swing at the anvil. 

It all comes from a place of love. Sanchez spent years in the United States military and returned from a combat zone in Afghanistan with anxiety and PTSD. He said that Crealdé helped him work through those feelings and now that he has become a studio artist, wishes to thank the school by painting its places and people.

“Everybody involved with the school is so committed to helping the community in many different ways,” he said. “I love these people here.”


Kathryn Brohl

Kate Collins

Mayra Feliu

Vera Gubnitskaia

Linda LaCombe

Sridevi Rao

Joan Sanchez

Diane Stapleton

Deborah Umphrey

Suzy Wilson

Sharon Wirag


If You Go: Emerge: Painting & Drawing Fellowship & Studio Artists Reception

WHEN: 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 10

WHERE: Crealdé School of Art, 600 St. Andrews Blvd., Winter Park

COST: Free


CONTACT: (407) 671-1886

Harry Sayer is the Black Tie Reporter for the Observer. He is a graduate of the University of Central Florida and previously worked the Black Tie beat for the Observer newspaper in Winter Park and Maitland. You can catch him at one of Sarasota's fundraisers and shindigs. 


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