BEAVER CREEK — An old proverb states that necessity is the mother of invention. Often in human behavior, necessity is the catalyst for re-inventing oneself, for diving completely into change and personal transformation. This has been the case for artist Adele Earnshaw, an accomplished watercolorist who switched to oil painting after a wrist injury. Although her subject matter still includes wildlife, primarily birds, she also enjoys painting on location and landscapes have become a major focus in her work.
Earnshaw will be painting at the Horton Fine Art Gallery in Beaver Creek today through the Sunday.
“We love her work because it creates a sense of serenity in the viewer,” said gallery director Simone Crotzer. “The gentleness of the animals portrayed in their natural environment is a window of meditative quality into a natural environment unfamiliar to most city dwellers.”
Earnshaw was selected by representatives in her native country, New Zealand, to design the first three stamps for the Game Bird Habitat Stamp Programme, based on the U.S. Federal Duck Stamp Program. “This is a highly prestigious award, especially for an artist who chose to leave her country and then went back to reconcile with her roots,” Crotzer continued. “She is a gutsy lady who is not afraid of change and transformation.”
Earnshaw was recently featured in Wildlife Art Nature Journal. Editor Todd Wilkinson wrote: “Her painting is at the height of her observational power and is attracting attention from collectors. The story of Earnshaw reinvention provides plenty of lessons for artists struggling against a tough economy and personal adversity. By being innovative and willing to take risks, the New Zealander painter, who has made her home in America for decades, is gaining critical recognition, broadening her collectors’ base and providing an inspiring case study for success.”
To reconnect with her original roots and find new inspiration, Earnshaw recently spent last fall and spring back in New Zealand. On the trip, she created a new body of moody, impressionistic landscape paintings.
Earnshaw is represented by galleries across the U.S. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum and the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum. Her book, “Painting the Things You Love in Watercolor” was released by North Light Publications in 2002.
The Horton Fine Art Gallery is located across from the ice skating rink on the main Village Square in Beaver Creek. Call 970-949-1660 for information.