Artist Helen Klebesadel shares her rich and exquisite portfolio of watercolors, and invites you to visit her website.
My visual concerns run the gamut from careful study to poetic, symbolic and sometimes political representations of nature and human nature. For more than two decades I have been creating watercolors that consider what, who, and how we value.
I’m best known for my environmental and women-centered paintings. Artists have dealt with the human relationship to nature for centuries. My art is intended to remind us that we humans are nature and that our survival is tied to our recognition that what we do to the earth we do to ourselves.
I am endlessly engaged by watercolor as a medium, however I avoided the medium for years because of watercolor’s place at the bottom of the painting hierarchy. Forced to take a watercolor class by a snafu in my college schedule, I was immediately hooked by its flexibility and beauty, and have remained so for two decades.
My watercolors range in sizes from small and intimate to the monumentally large multi-panel watercolors. While I have recently been exploring watercolor on canvas, I typically work in transparent watercolors on paper.
Starting with detailed drawings, I develop them into recognizable images through layer upon layer of color washes and dry brush technique mixed with occasional areas of wet-into-wet spontaneity. I love exploring techniques that lead to rich textures too.
I have taught courses and workshops on creativity, studio art, and the contemporary women’s art movement for decades. My prose and watercolors have been featured in books and journals. I’m also a past national president of the Women’s Caucus for Art.
I believe everyone is an artist, and that people are more likely to find their activist voices when they find their artist voice. (You have to learn to think for yourself to make good art).
I’m currently interested in exploring collaborative art practices that have a social justice component to them, like my current co-facilitate Exquisite Uterus Project that can be seen here.