wendy prather burwell

Still Life Paintings


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About

I first came to painting through my love of plants and the landscape. While completing a horticulture program at Longwood Gardens, I sidetracked into botanical illustration and ended up studying it for five years. This experience continues to shape the way I look at plants, the high level of detail in my work, and my inclination to focus on an individual subject. Painting is my way of exploring the huge variety of plant forms, colors, textures, and markings - all of the quirky characteristics that fascinate me.

Traveling in Europe during my teens and twenties instilled an early admiration for old things, for materials that age well and have a solidity to them - old buildings, old furniture, old paintings. And of all the old paintings, the still lifes captivate me the most, especially those of the Spanish tradition, with its austerely beautiful depictions of the simplest fruits, vegetables, and dishes. Connecting to the past is important to me, and I find the small intimate worlds created in these old paintings to be so alluring.

I love the challenge of capturing atmosphere in paint, making a subject look like it exists in space and has weight and depth. It doesn't come easily, but I enjoy the slowness of it, taking time to really look at my subjects, sometimes revisiting the same ones over and over. I always aim for naturalness and simplicity in my still lifes. For the most part, these are up-close paintings; they won't grab you from across the room. I hope however that my work conveys the enormous pleasure I've found in looking at the natural world with curiosity and appreciation.

 

Exhibits

ONE AND TWO PERSON SHOWS
2017   
Paintings, with Nancy Granda, The Hill at Whitemarsh, Lafayette Hill PA

2016   
Still Life Paintings, Solo Exhibit, Riverside Gallery, Pottersville NJ


SELECTED GROUP SHOWS
2016   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center, Wayne PA

2015   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center
The 152nd Annual Exhibition of Small Oil Paintings, Philadelphia Sketch Club, Philadelphia PA

2012   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center

2011   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center

2010   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center
Drawn from Nature, John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove, Audubon PA
The Art of the Flower, Philadelphia Sketch Club

2009   
The 146th Annual Exhibit of Small Oil Paintings, Philadelphia Sketch Club
The Art of the Flower, Philadelphia Sketch Club
Annual All Media Exhibition, Chester County Art Association, West Chester PA

2008   
The 145th Annual Exhibition of Small Oil Paintings, Philadelphia Sketch Club
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center
Members Juried Exhibit, Chester County Art Association
Through the Eyes of an Artist, Montgomery County Guild of Professional Artists, Conshohocken PA
The Art of the Flower, Philadelphia Sketch Club

2007
 Points of View, Newark Academy, Livingston NJ
The Art of the Flower, Philadelphia Sketch Club

2006   
The 143rd Annual Exhibit of Small Oil Paintings, Philadelphia Sketch Club

2001   
Members Juried Exhibit, Wayne Art Center
The Philadelphia Flower Show, Exhibit of the Philadelphia Society of Botanical Illustrators, Philadelphia PA
Fine Garden Creations, Swarthmore PA

2000   
Flora 2000, Exhibit of the American Society of Botanical Artists, Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square PA
The Philadelphia Flower Show

1999   
The Philadelphia Flower Show

1998   
The Philadelphia Flower Show


AWARDS
2016
The Mildred Becker Pierce Award, Wayne Art Center, Juror Ted Xaras

2011   
The Great Frame-Up Award, Wayne Art Center, Juror Peter Van Dyck

2008   
The Dr. Stanley Becker Award, Montgomery County Guild of Professional Artists, Juror Patrick Connors


PUBLICATIONS
2016   
Green Tomato, painting published as illustration, Edible Southwest Colorado Magazine, Summer Issue