West Virginia artist explains how she went from working in metal to making acrylic paints at opening of ‘Reflection of Creation’ exhibit
BUCKHANNON — The MIB Gallery at the Colonial Arts Center is filled with the creations of a West Virginia artist, and Friday night Lydia Grimm herself had the opportunity to unveil her exhibit, “Reflection of Creation,” during an artists’ reception.
Bryson VanNostrand, founding member of ART26201, introduced Grimm, saying she grew up in Butler, Pennsylvania, but now lives in Moundsville, West Virginia.
“We have an artist from West Virginia among us, and it always feels good when we can promote female artists,” VanNostrand said. “And we are particularly pleased to present an up-and-coming artist.”
Grimm said she was happy to have the opportunity to show her work in the MIB gallery.
“I’ve done craft shows, but it’s important,” Grimm said, adding that she started about four years ago when her son was born. “I had postpartum depression, and I was really struggling with it, but luckily I had a 1970s piece my dad made in copper from a steel mill in Pittsburgh.”
Grimm said that in her early days she did copper relief or repoussé. She said each piece of metalwork she completes takes several months to complete, especially the copper ones.
“It’s one of those timeless things you see in a lot of antique stores these days,” she said. “I seal these pieces so they age slowly. The patina is natural. I use a mixture of salt and vinegar and polish.
Next, Grimm explained how she transitioned from working in metal to acrylic paints.
“I loved to paint and felt like I was never good at it,” Grimm said. “I started with pen and ink, and that’s why there are so many areas with lots of brush strokes, stippling, and lines. Learning to paint has been a long and fun journey, and I hope to continue and grow. As you can see my paintings are a lot of nature scenes; I hope it reflects my past. My dad took us looking for fairy mounds when I was young. J trying to bring the layers in and see them come out of the canvas.
Grimm said in her acrylic paintings that she felt the main subject was “full and in your face”.
“They have a full experience with lots of detail, and I hope it reflects their surroundings,” she said. “I hope it brings you together with the animal or creature, and I hope it makes you feel like you discovered it yourself – as if you were in the woods yourself and you you just stopped to see the fox staring directly at you. Then you blink and it’s gone. This is how these things happen, and I want to capture the fleeting and precious moments that you don’t expect.
Grimm is a Christian who always enjoys observing the intricacies of creation.
“I’m still looking for details,” Grimm said. “I like to research the depth of the eyes, shapes and different colors – all the different things in this world. I hope to continue with that and share that with you.
In her artist statement, Grimm said her works feature natural subjects, such as plants, insects, trees and animals, which she hopes convey the joy that nature brings to the home. .
“Reflection of Creation” is free and open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on September 9 and 10, September 16 and 17 and September 23 and 24 in the MIB gallery inside the CAC.