Arts Editor’s Note: In recent months, The Beachcomber has partnered with Vashon Island Visual Artists (ViVA) to highlight the vibrant visual arts community of Vashon. This week, painter Michael Darr tells us, in his own words, about his work. To learn more about ViVA and find out how to contact Darr and other local artists, or arrange a private studio visit that adheres to COVID-19 protocols, visit vivartists.com.
When my husband and I retired to Vashon Island four years ago, we instantly knew we were home.
While working at UW Medicine in Seattle, I studied extensively at Gage Academy of Art. A year ago, I was especially happy to join Quartermaster Press.
I enjoy painting in watercolor, acrylic, and oil; and printing in monotype and linocut. My artistic style ranges from realism to abstract. My prints have been used on limited edition sports medallions and greeting cards.
I am a relatively new entrant to art shows. Thus far, my work has been shown at Gage Academy, Artwalla’s ArtSquared Show (Walla Walla), and The Peak Foundation (Alberton, Montana). I am currently working on a large series of works reflecting key turning points in my life. I look forward to sharing my artistic journey and more fully participating in the arts community here on Vashon.
Our world today is one of stark contrasts and epic struggles of conflicting perspectives. I have always been fascinated by how ideas are formed, considered, and adopted or discarded. Discourse is messy, unpredictable, and at times irrational. Nuances are lost. Yet somehow movement happens.
In my current works, I explore how events and emotions make us who we are and transform our lives. Some of my works aim to express the emotional and psychological impacts of social isolation imposed by the ongoing global pandemic. I am intrigued by the tension between our shared but necessarily disconnected experiences and our abiding human attraction to beauty and social interaction.