Rediscovering the familiar through painted color |

Rediscovering the familiar through painted color

Wren Wertin
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Joan Norris has a new favorite color – white.

The established local artist is hosting an exhibit at the Vail Library through the end of the month. Meet the artist Sunday at a reception 2-5 p.m.

Norris has been painting in Red Cliff for years – she was easy to spot as she hauled paints and canvases in and out of her minivan. There’s big changes in her artistic life – she has a studio. For the first time, she can paint snow scenes from the comfort of a warm room.

“The challenge is the bright snow versus the cooler snow,” said the artist. “The yellow snow versus the blue snow, and purple shadows of green trees. I’ve found I so enjoy painting with the nuances of white, I’m very excited about it. It’s a wonderful change from green.”

Norris has amassed a slew of new paintings. Always prolific, the closing of Plaza Gallery, an artists’ cooperative gallery, left her with more time on her hands. It’s a bit like a vacation for the artist, who is as artistic-brained as they come. Not having to worry about administration duties and paperwork is just fine for her.

And painting in a studio – that’s even better.

“It’s presented a whole new world for me,” she said. “I’ve painted not only lots of hillside scenes, but houses with snowy roofs, and all that kind of thing. I’m rediscovering my familiar world.”

And she’s ready to share it. If you can’t make the artists reception, the exhibit will be up through March 31.

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