by Gretchen Foster
Dimensions: 19″ x 14″
Media: Acrylic on hardboard
For more information: 517-999-1019
Mardi Gras Dancer is acrylic painted on hardboard, measuring 19″ x 14″. It began as an abstract composition, vaguely cruciform in design. I painted the entire hardboard red and and began stamping it with squares and texturizing it with rough sponges, using mostly primary colors to create an interesting pattern. Then I looked for a form with which to organize my pattern. I saw a figure begin to emerge and I let her develop into a partly real, but mostly imaginary dancer. Her skin is parti-colored, and she seems to be double-jointed. I surrounded her with grey to make the colors more vivid, and to put in some dashes of black and curves of white to accentuate her form and action.
Gretchen Foster has been a painter and potter for more than thirty years. She studied graduate oil painting at MSU with Raulph Henricksen and Cliff McChesney, and water-media painting with Richard O’Malley and Mark Mehaffey. She has participated in workshops conducted by Cheng Khee Chee, Kathleen Conover, Helga Flower, Jan Sitts, and Linda Baker.
She is a co-founder of the Greater Lansing Potter’s Guild and holds a PhD in English from MSU, where she taught for 15 years. Together with painter and photographer Juanita Baldwin, she founded the Lansing Area Artists’ Connection in January 2007, a group of about 35 artists who show their work at the new mid-Michigan Professional Building, Lake Lansing Rd, Lansing.