Drawn to Charlottesville
Second Street Gallery, Charlottesville
James Madison University
Never No Horizons
Beverly Street Studio School, Staunton, VA
Charleston Music Hall
"Objective: to understand that the idea of looking at something and being able to see it as something else is an essential artistic trait" Kali Simone Haney from 4th grade art lesson plan
"Sometimes things that go wrong also go right." Lauren Child from 'Clarice Bean Spells Trouble'
"Stones, bones, clouds--experience gives me shapes..." Georgia O'Keefe
Sarah Boyts Yoder is a mixed media painter based in Charlottesville, VA. She received an MFA in painting from James Madison University in 2006. Over the last decade she has exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions in South Carolina, Texas, Florida, Washington DC, Nashville and Virginia.
Sarah has twice been a fellow and resident artist at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (2013 and 2014) and also at 100W Corsicana in Texas in June of 2017. She was awarded a professional fellowship in painting from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in 2014 and in 2017 Sarah's work was included in the annual juried exhibition at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art. This year she was a semifinalist for the Trawick Art Prize.
What can painting be? As one who revels in the possibilities of painterly abstraction, my work gallops alongside two closely held beliefs. The first is a belief in a deep human desire to decode and make sense of visual information. The second belief is in the capacity of our human imagination to creatively process that information. The playfully ambiguous and painterly abstract works I construct provide practice fields for doing just this kind of creative deciphering.
My goal is to provide a kind of middle world where one is held in balance between warm familiarity and a jolly strangeness. What if we could see that middle space [between familiarity and strangeness] as a joy rather than a frustration? As a place to relax, look around, ask questions, make connections with each other and ourselves?
The work comes with an open and off-kilter invitation to approach, to sort through and gather together these suspended forms and shapes like so many scattered toys after a kids’ game gone wrong.
Toeing the line between familiarity and strangeness IS a game. And ultimately, it connects you and me. If we can practice being in between, our imaginations expand, empathy grows. That’s the point of all art. THIS is what I believe painting can be. Do you see what I see? What can we add to each other’s experience when we see the same thing? Or, when we see things completely different.