Some Like It Hot - Works in Encaustic 

I discovered encaustic painting over a decade ago when I was working on a series of mixed media artworks based on fractal formations. I was searching for a medium which had a thicker texture than oil paint. I tried cold wax, but found the petroleum based medium unappealing and antithetical to the organic images I was creating. My gallerist at the time suggested encaustic - hot bees wax, resin and pigment. The smell of beeswax, the grinding of resin, adding pigments and creating a sensuous thick lustrous layer of paint immediately captivated me. Moreover, I loved the medium’s ancient roots. I took workshops at A&F in Kingston - known affectionately in the encaustic world as “The Mothership” - where the finest color encaustic tablets are made on-site in their small batch factory.  I have continued to paint with encaustic ever since.

I led a few workshops and began teaching classes in encaustic paint technique at The Rye Arts Center about four years ago. A year ago, I began teaching classes at Pelham Art Center. It has been exciting to witness many of my students really take to the medium and I have been happy to help nurture their development and I have benefitted, as well,  from my students wonderful creative talent.  Accordingly, I proposed an exhibition to show off their work and this small idea has developed into the show Some Like It Hot.

Over 25 contemporary artists and encaustic students from The Rye Arts Center and Pelham Art Center were invited to display their work in this show. Each artist has created a distinct vocabulary with the medium and the diversity of their work showcases many of the beautiful and sensual characteristics possible with encaustic: rich luminous color; smooth surfaces polished to a gloss; highly textured surfaces built up with multiple layers and sculpted; surfaces embedded with mixed media or gilded with gold leaf; lines etched, marks scored and areas scraped into the surface.  

Artists’s work was also chosen to demonstrate the range of compositional styles from abstractions to figurative and landscapes images.

This is my fourth curated exhibition at The Rye Arts Center and I am particularly excited to share work in this lesser known medium with the community since it should have wide appeal for everyone!

Katharine Dufault, curator 
January 2018

Artists: Christine Aaron, Anne Bedrick, Dinnie Birnsein, Kathy Cantwell, Katharine Dufault, Roxanne Faber Savage, David Fox, Lorraine Glessner, Leslie Guiliani, Laura Moriarty, Lisa Pressman, Pat Spainhour, Priya Tambe, Dietlind Vaner Shaaf. Carolyn Antoine, Idil Barkan, Meryl Bovard, Nancy Cramer, Barbar Furtik, Katy Gary, Lynn Honeysett, Shu Huanng, Barbara Niemimen and Priscilla Warner.