Monday, June 6
The 19th century discovery, collection, and popularization of mummy portraits found in the Fayum area of Egypt was an important factor that led to the “rediscovery” of encaustic as a painting medium. These bust portraits have a distinctively-recognizable style with large eyes, frontal positioning of the head, and a more naturalistic appearance. Many of the portraits were painted with the ancient four mineral colors of yellow ochre, red ochre, white from gypsum, and black from ash. We will use selfie phone photos that each participant prints out and uses as the basis for his or her own Fayum-style selfie, using the ancient four-color palette along with very small brushes and small cold tools -- no heat guns, torches, or heated tools would be used. The selfies will be painted on small panels that are prepared in advance with a specially-colored gesso. The object of the workshop is not only to paint the selfie but to learn about a different method of working in encaustic. The resultant paintings have thin, hard, layers of encaustic and a surface that is very different in appearance from contemporary works. This workshop would be suitable for all levels of students.
Nancy Natale began working with encaustic more than 10 years ago after experimenting with many mediums, styles, and forms. Eventually she made encaustic her own by using it with found objects such as parts of books, recycled rubber, treated metal, and cut-up paintings. Her enjoyment of the rich experience of painted marks and passages with the addition of collaged elements and found objects lets her work with several mediums to achieve the desired results. Nancy has received a number of grants, including a Pollock Krasner grant, and in 2012 a grant from the Artists' Resource Trust. She has participated in all of the annual Encaustic Conferences and one of her works was acquired by the Cape Cod Museum of Art in Dennis, Massachusetts. Nancy is the Featured Articles Editor for ProWax Journal and her work is represented by Arden Gallery in Boston.