Light, history, movement
For oil painter Richard Boyer, it all begins with light. The artist will be in residence at Cogswell Gallery in Vail today from 5-8 p.m. and Saturday from 2-5 p.m. When not in the gallery, he plans on getting in some skiing.”It’s the light, that’s what captures my eye the most,” said Boyer. “You’ll drive by and say, “Oh, look at the sunlight splashing through the trees.'”Painting is the only real job Boyer’s had, though in college he had the occasional part-time gig.”But it always came back to painting,” he said. “I went to university and got a painting degree. If that’s the only route you’ve chosen, you have to make it work. Sink or swim.”A longtime featured artist for Cogswell Gallery, among others, Boyer’s style is unmistakable. He works exclusively in oil on linen.”I like oil paint because you can be aggressive with it,” he explained. “With watercolors you have to be dainty. But oil – you can really push it around.”And true to his interest, the light seems to shimmer through the paint. He’s always on the lookout for it. Boyer paints both plein air and in the studio. He starts with smaller canvases for his plein air work, and then expands on the initial themes in bigger works. For him, his painting is an evolutionary process.Though he admires many painters, the biggest influence on his work is traveling. In fact, he says he needs that stimulation to keep the art and excitement flowing.”I need that,” he said. “It’s an adrenaline kick. I don’t like getting into the same routine, painting the same subject matter over and over again.”This summer he’s heading to Tuscany. In years past he and his family have visited Sweden – his wife’s homeland – Ireland, Provence and Germany. And, though his work is familiar to many Vailites, visiting Eagle County is a first for the artist. And so the traveler continues to wander.For more information on Richard Boyer or Cogswell Gallery, call the gallery at 476-1769.Venetian glass artist Lino Tagliapietra visits Beaver Creek’s PismoMake a cocktail of equal parts magic and fire, and wait for the glass art of Lino Tagliapietra to appear. The glass blower who trained and still works in the Venetian tradition will be in residence at Pismo Gallery in Beaver Creek today from 6-9 p.m.”The glass is a lot of things,” said the artist with a heavy Italian accent. “It’s fire, it’s form, it’s material, it’s color. The glass is a lot of things.”Tagliapietra was born in Murano, Italy, still a glass Mecca today. At 12, he began his apprenticeship with maestro Archimede Seguso, and became a master himself at 21. His vision has gone through many transformations – traditional to contemporary.”I am a little bit Roman, a little bit Byzantine, a little bit American, a little bit of everything,” he said. “I have a strong connection with the past. The past for me represents the future, it’s very important.”It’s difficult for him to put into words his mental process when creating. Telling the technique is one thing – he’s fluent with that. But the idea that shapes in his head, which then flows out into the actual world – that part is still one of the mysteries that keeps him avidly interested in glass 60 years after he began his apprenticeship.”The natural world, the people, the culture,” he mused. “What do we think? What are we feeling? What are we eating? What I did, what I saw – it’s hard to explain why you do this or something else. Sometimes you have things inside you, you never knew you had.”And because he’s a master, he can push those things out into his glass. As a master, he taught for many years. Though he enjoyed it immensely – the constant brush with students and their ideas kept him young – he’s now an in-demand studio artist in control of his own days.Color is extremely important to his work.”Like you choose the dress in the morning. Which color do you want today?” he asked. “It depends on the spirit of the moment. Right now I’m passionate about red. And I have a passion for orange with turquoise. For me that is fantastic.”But he uses them all.For more information on Lino Tagliapietra or Pismo Gallery, call the gallery at 949-0908.