Dive deep into abstract art | VailDaily.com

Dive deep into abstract art

Cassie Pence
Special to the Daily "Four Flowers," by Jennifer Scott McLaughlin.

EAGLE-VAIL – When The Collaborative Fine Art gallery in Eagle-Vail first opened, director Simone Fodde-Crotzer hung figurative art on one side and abstract art on the other, as if some mythological river was dividing the space.As people entered the gallery, they would either cross into the safe world of figurative art or dive deep into the underworld of abstract art.”I could immediately understand what level of exposure that client had of art. I knew what was their safety nest. You can also see their curiosity level and willingness to explore the edge,” Fodde-Crotzer said.One year later, Fodde-Crotzer’s guiding clients into the abstraction that differentiates the small gallery from most in the Vail Valley, and her “wall of safety” has condensed to just a few featured landscape paintings. She and owner Tim Benedickt are hosting a one-year anniversary celebration. Artists will be in attendance.”Tim and I started this gallery to explore the visual edge. To see what’s really happening in the art world,” said Fodde-Crotzer. “It’s been an interesting first year, but when you have a dream you need to be persistent. Keep it in front of you as your mantra and mission.”

Client Cindy Senko of Denver, who owns a home in the valley, commissioned two large works from Boulder Artist Nancy Volpe. In addition to the art, what Senko likes about The Collaborative is Fodde-Crotzer’s individual attention.”What was really great is Simone came out to the house to better understand our style and where we wanted the pieces. She gained a better feel for our taste and the lighting. She just gives such a personal experience to the whole thing,” said Senko.Most of The Collaborative artists are from Colorado, allowing the clients to meet and discuss the art with its creator. And since the art is abstract, Senko said knowing the artist adds something special to the pieces that will adorn your home.”I like more contemporary and abstract art. In Vail, everything out your window is a painting. Abstract gives you a different dimension, a different medium to look at,” said Senko.Fodde-Crotzer is intrigued by what’s inspiring the artist at the moment. The muse is ever changing throughout history. It was once mythology, and then art revolved around who was paying for it. Now, art is about expressing a philosophy, said Fodde-Crotzer.

“Figurative art is self explanatory. It’s really easy to understand. What you see is what you get,” Fodde-Crotzer said. “Abstract art is more challenging. You’re left to project whatever is coming out from your own soul and imagination.”Featured female artist Cha Cha, who creates by forging steel, explores the suppressive qualities of ego and identity in her work, representing self-awareness with a small steel cage over symbols and words.”Hanging on the wall is a very large theory and philosophy contracted into one small image,” Fodde-Crotzer said.Artist Dodi Klutznick’s art adventures beyond linear time and Kevan Krasnoff expresses nature’s kinetic energy in his abstract landscapes. Sometimes abstract art is just about the act of creating itself, like in newcomer Jennifer Scott McLaughlin’s work. The Fort Collins artist uses circles to lay down lines, form and color. “Abstract expressionism is a form of art which is about a raw and impulsive creation,” said McLaughlin. “My paintings are very energetic and about movement and line. They are very physical, literally, I put a lot of sweat into each work.”

Similar to a lot of the artists featured at The Collaborative, the creation process inspires McLaughlin. She enjoys seeing the work evolve layer by layer. Fodde-Crotzer interprets the abstraction and guides her clients to find meaning as well.For more information on The Collaborative in Eagle-Vail, call Fodde-Crotzer at 949-4ART.Arts and Entertainment Editor Cassie Pence can be reached at (970) 949-0555, ext. 618, or cpence@vaildaily.com.Vail Colorado

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