Greensboro College hosts collaborative art show by a married couple
By: Heather Dukes
On Jan. 24 at Greensboro College, a married couple unveiled their shared art exhibition that will be on display until Feb. 23. Though their artistic perspectives differ, they find that their message complements each other through their artwork.
Their collaborative exhibition is titled Vision and Intuition and offers pieces from Erik Ström and his wife, Charlotte Chipman Ström. The Ströms may differ in their style, but both share “elements of abstraction and design,” according to the press release.
Erik wrote in a joint email with Charlotte that his work is a combination of modern illustration and classical fine art qualities. “My visual style has developed with my exploration of pattern within composition, in relation to the narrative of the painting.”
While Charlotte’s style is influenced primarily by motion.
“Observation of action and reaction, exploration of cause and effect, both on and off the canvas, cause me to revere and to respect the ever-changing aspects of livelihood,” Charlotte wrote in the joint statement. “These images occur as I propel myself forward.”
The Ströms has their work on display at the Anne Rudd Galyon Gallery and the Irene Culls Gallery, which overlooks the student studios. The public can expect to see their separate artwork such as “Serene Exhilaration,” an acrylic painting on canvas and “Joan of Arc” acrylic on canvas. “The Three of Us,” a collaborative Acrylic on canvas painting by Charlotte and Erik can also be seen at the exhibition. The Ströms told me in an email that the name of the exhibition, “Vision and Intuition,” are terms for how they create and how the artwork expresses their ideas to the viewer. The couple’s art is a combination of those two ideas.
Their paintings develop either by having a structured idea (or a vision) and allowing for abstraction (the intuition) to develop and either play against or within that idea or to start from a place of complete openness and allow for spontaneous interpretation (intuition) to evolve into a final statement (vision).
The couple wrote that Greensboro College presented them with a “great opportunity” to showcase their work, both old and new.
“We’re mixing brand new pieces never shown before with other work that spans a roughly 10 year period,” the couple wrote. “We wanted people to see how past work connects to current work. We’ve evolved as artists. We’ve been learning, and we’re still searching. It’s nice to be able to look at an exhibition of our artwork and see the different pathways that have taken us to new breakthroughs.”
The couple wrote that the exhibition shows their growth as artists.
“We chose pieces that represent different stylistic approaches but fit together as a cohesive body of work. “
After noticing that there was no consistency in both of their styles, I asked how the artists thought their styles either differed or matched. They wrote that their different styles complement each other.
“We have a history together, and we even come from the same tradition of representational art academia,” they wrote. “We finished school and had explored the more technical side of art. We were also witnessing each other’s personal stylistic growth as artists over the years. So, even though we may come at ideas from different perspectives we understand each other’s worlds very well.”
The couple thinks their differences make collaborating “exciting, challenging and rewarding.”
The couple believes that showcasing their collaboration helps them learn to communicate better with themselves and others
“It allows us to see things in new ways and then apply those lessons to our solo work or even to other new collaborations,” the couple wrote. “So there is a wide stylistic spectrum throughout our independent artwork, but it fits together very naturally. Much of that has come from collaborating.”
The gallery is located at 815 W. Market St. and the exhibition is free and open to the public Monday through Friday 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. For more information, visit the Greensboro College website, www.greensboro.edu.