Ann Marie uses palette knives to create ultra high textured paintings that have a bold and unique appeal. She paints from her home studio in Arlington, Virginia.
What's your story?
I started painting in high school and used art to overcome the loss of my four-year-old brother who passed away from cancer when I was 12. Retelling the tragedy through art was really the only thing that helped me move forward. Meanwhile I had an incredible high school art teacher who encouraged me to major in art. I graduated from Virginia Tech in 2003 with a concentration in painting and dual degrees in Studio Art and Marketing Management. After college I was awarded a studio residency at the Arlington Arts Center and I've been painting and exhibiting in the area ever since.
What's your creative process?
My studio time is limited to one to two hour sessions while my three young boys are in school or at nighttime after they go to sleep. I paint intuitively and aggressively, most times letting pieces rest a few days before analyzing the next move. Often times I will leave pieces alone for 6 months before having a breakthrough, which sometimes results in a totally new and unexpected piece. I'm inspired by so many things, recently the mountains in the distance while driving down 81 in southwest Virginia, the marshy landscape in Back Bay near the Virginia/North Carolina border, and the super heavy textural paintings of Robert Irwin now on view at the Hirshhorn Museum in DC.
What makes your work unique?
My work is unique because I use only palette knives with super heavy, sculptural paint applications. I love the unmuddled and confident knife strokes and the frosting-like ayering of bold colors.
What advice do you have for other aspiring painters?
Be yourself. Create every day if you can: whether it be painting, drawing, editing, writing, exploring, or just thinking through ideas with a good cup of coffee. Be inspired by others, but trust your own voice because it is what makes you unique.
Where can we find your work?
My work can be found on my instagram @annmariecoolick, website: annmariecoolick.com, and at the following galleries on the east coast: @thecooleygallery @covet_arlington @westannapolisartworks @kelleewynnestudios
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