Second Nature will showcase new oil paintings of Bowland’s vibrantly colorful, thickly-textured landscapes.
Venvi Art Gallery is pleased to present Second Nature: Colorscapes by Julie Bowland, a solo exhibition of paintings by former Tallahassee artist Julie Bowland. Bowland lived and worked in the Tallahassee art community for twenty-five years before moving to Valdosta, Georgia where she is a professor of art at Valdosta State University (VSU) and directs the VSU Dedo Maranville Fine Arts Gallery.
Second Nature will showcase new oil paintings of Bowland’s vibrantly colorful, thickly-textured landscapes. The love of nature and representing it in colorful glory is second nature to the artist. Bowland paints directly from the landscape, known in French as plein air or “open air” painting. Color is heightened and exaggerated; loose, energetic brushstrokes create bold, expressionistic interpretations of nature.
Many of the paintings were painted recently at North Florida’s springs and rivers. Images of the Suwannee River and springs-including Royal, Fern hammock, and Manatee-glow with the clarity of the pure, cold turquoise water surrounded by lush, primeval forest. The languid richness of Hawaii is vividly portrayed in shades of lilac and blue. Beaches, sunsets over lakes, nature’s flora abound in colorful splendor.
Bowland says of her process, “Color is everything to me: It expresses intensity of emotion as it defines space and form. It is exciting and inspiring to slather paint while engulfed in a wild swamp or forest, to dance with the elements of wind, wildlife, shifting light, and all the other uncontrollable aspects of nature. This joy and excitement drives me to make art. I think of my style of art as plein air expressionism.”
Bowland earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts at FSU, and Master of Fine Arts from Arizona State University. She formerly taught at both FSU and TCC, and was Director of the 621 Gallery, as well as the Arts in Public Places Director for the Tallahassee/Leon County Cultural Resources Commission, now Council on Culture & Arts (COCA.) In the last several years she has presented solo exhibitions at the Buchanan Museum of Art in Michigan; University of Mobile (Alabama;) Albany (Georgia) Arts Council, Thomas University in Thomasville, Georgia; North Florida Community College in Madison; and at the Art & Design Society in Ft. Walton Beach, Florida. Her work has been shown in Strzeminski Academy of Fine Arts, Lodz, Poland, and in juried and group shows in North Carolina, Louisiana, Indiana, Utah, Georgia and Florida. Her paintings are in the collections of the Buchanan (Michigan) Museum of Art, Museum of Arts and Sciences (Daytona Beach,) City of Tallahassee, Florida State College at Jacksonville, and many private offices and residences. Bowland also leads plein air painting workshops for adults and children. She has won numerous awards in juried exhibitions.