Artist Demo: Abstract Painting with Juni Van Dyke

April 3, 2024
Wednesday 10:30am - 12pm

Juni Van Dyke, On Being a Colorist:

As an abstract painter, my joy is color. Years ago, when I was a student, an esteemed artist who was teaching said to me, “You are a colorist.” And my heart skipped a beat.

It has been said that one can live in the dreariest corners of the world all the while performing color miracles on the dreariest of days. German artists Nolde and Kandinsky did just that during the dark impending doom of war, suggesting color to be more a matter of preference for expression rather than allegiance to source. Perhaps, color for these courageous artists was embedded in a sense of optimism and hope despite all odds.

I am blessed to live on Cape Ann where the geography and the light has informed my work for many years. The natural beauty of Cape Ann sweeping across granite under foot, coastal views, hillside vistas—Cape Ann is an ever present force in my work. On the way to my city job in Gloucester, I travel over the Annisquam River bridge where the ocean below is an ever changing marvel of light and activity awaiting my interpretation. Using abstract forms, I invite the viewer to experience my work without interruption of title. Energized by the interaction, I find viewer interpretation fascinating and exciting—valid without exception.

From my earliest years, I have always loved color; patten-leather shoes, shiny black like a candy you wanted to taste—a pink dress that belonged to someone else—bright yellow soap—an orange crayon—these held my attention, not so much for what they were as for the magic of their color. Now, into my eighties, color still motivates my need to share the joy.

Juni Van Dyke is a graduate of The School of The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and holds a BFA and MAT from Tufts University. Since 1993 she has been the director of the arts program at The Rose Baker Senior Center, Gloucester. Under her direction, works created by senior citizens have been exhibited in museums and public institutions across New England. Van Dyke is the recipient of the St. Botolph Foundation Award, Boston. Van Dyke’s work is held in the permanent collection of The Cape Ann Museum, The Carney Center of Art at The College of The Holy Cross, and in numerous private collections. Past exhibitions include The Fuller Art Museum, The Boston Center for the Arts, The Barrington Center for the Arts, Bromfield Gallery (Boston), Kingston Gallery (Boston), The South Shore Arts Center, and The Jane Deering Gallery. Van Dyke’s work is represented throughout the country by the home furnishing company Room & Board.