When artists flirt with abstraction, they sometimes ask, “What is the least amount of information I can give and still tell a story?” I love the ways this issue’s featured artists answer that question. VoiceCatcher welcomes three artists to our Spring 2018 journal: Roberta Aylward, Denise Hrouda, and Nicole Williford. Their visual stories, whether one-liners, memoirs, or biographical snippets, stay with me long after I stop looking.
Painter and mixed-media artist Roberta Aylward often treads a line between the knowable and the obscure in her work. Lately, she has thrown in just the right amount of humor, as well. One piece in this issue, for example, is composed of clean-cut denim blue paper tacked to the wall with brass pins. The title? “Skinny Jeans.”
Denise Hrouda also uses titles as signposts to direct the viewer. Her acrylic drips and swirls, however, contain a language that can easily be felt without words. Hrouda is no stranger to VoiceCatcher: the long-time reader may recognize her work from the cover of the 2012 print edition of this journal.
Nicole Williford has a way with portraiture, whether it is a quick sketch or a fine-tuned oil painting. The pieces I find the most mesmerizing are those that remove a level of recognizability. A blurred face may give me more insight than a photograph. A hidden or incomplete figure reminds me that life is always moving and breathing, even if we try to stop or pose it.
A taste of these makers and their work is provided in the pages to follow, but more about all three can be found below their respective works of art. I hope you discover someone worth following up on.