A Newport working Studio Gallery

55 Bellevue Avenue, Newport RI 02840

Visiting Artist

Kerstin Zettmar

Visiting Artist for July and August 2020

Artist Statement:

Making images has always been a way for me to connect to the flow of life. As a somewhat sickly and asthmatic child I had to avoid strenuous physical activities, but was encouraged to draw and paint. Growing up in the 1960’s, in a remote and rural area of Sweden, without many playmates, I was grateful to have an outlet and interest that took away my loneliness and put me in touch with a sense of timelessness.

As a teenager my appetite for seeing the world grew, and for a few years in my early 20’s I lived a bit like a Gypsy and studied art wherever life took me at the moment, ranging from such flat places as Enid, Oklahoma to mountainous Aix- en Provence, France. I also developed the unusual kind of fiber art that many of my art clients connect me with. Since 1982 I have called Newport, RI, my home.

The themes in my pictures vary from nature imagery to inner landscapes, often with a dreamlike or mythological quality. My strong interest in spirituality and interconnectedness tend to show up in my work. Many times I like to keep myself in suspense and let the imagery reveal itself to me as I paint or stitch. I do not have a detailed plan when I begin, unless I am working from an approved sketch for a commission. Through the years I have received commissions from churches, schools, hotels and offices, and private collectors. In spite of my shyness about marketing my art work, I have also, to my amazement, had one woman shows in Sweden, UK, USA and Poland and have sold pieces internationally.

Like any artist I love it when someone wants to affirm my work by purchasing a piece. However, when I am in the process of making the image, a sale is the last thing on my mind. My intention is to connect with something deep and true and to the best of my ability convey that with colors and lines, shapes and textures. When someone looks at one of my images and feel touched by it, or remember a painting or fiber piece that I created years ago, I feel like I have succeeded. It does not happen all the time, but when it does, the feeling is priceless.

I believe that if we paint or write from a conceptual and thinking place in us, it usually engages the mental faculties of the viewer. And they will say;” Interesting! Fascinating! Isn’t that clever!” If we express something heartfelt or soulful in us, it has the potential to move the observer in a very private and intimate way and maybe produce a sigh, an inner smile or a tear. That scares some people and make them uncomfortable, I know. Yet, most of the time I still aim for that in whatever I do. For me, that is where the deeper mystery and healing happens. That is where we realize we are not separate, but more connected than we will ever know by intellect alone. ~Kerstin Zettmar

Mossy Boulders