This week we could not be more thrilled to introduce you to our newest artist on the Lane, Brenda Bogart! Her beautiful collages have brightened up our shop and we can’t get enough of the unique details of each piece. Based in Dallas, Texas, Brenda creates her signature Collage Faces and Geisha Girls using a fascinating mix of collected materials. We’re are absolutely crazy about all of our new friends and can’t wait for you to come meet them yourself!
Tell us a little about yourself and your path to becoming an artist.
From an early age I had a strong craving to create. I started my career as an interior designer in the early 80’s, designing resort hotel properties for Wilson & Associates. That led to other creative pursuits and in 2006 I decided to practice art full time.
Where do you find your greatest inspiration?
The human face. It is what I am consistently drawn to in art, architecture, furniture, pottery, and sculpture. There is a specific reason I paint people. I want to remind viewers that in each of us is the power to affect the world with good or evil. We all possess the power to hurt or heal those around us so we should be careful how we treat others.
How would you describe your creative process?
The creative process for me always starts with a good night’s sleep. I can’t seem to stay out of my studio even when I am dog tired or sick but my most creative days are when I am well rested. I tend to start a series and get obsessed with creating that same thing over and over. If I am not spending enough time in my studio I get anxious. The first thing I do in the morning is run up to my studio to look at what I created the day before, and the last thing I do at night is run back up there to see my work from that day with fresh eyes. I am almost always on. There is no warm up routine. The hard part for me is turning it off.
Has your style changed or developed over time?
Yes. Hopefully my work is getting more sophisticated. There were some things I just had to get out of my system early on. I am constantly learning and growing and I can see it in the progression of my work.
We absolutely love both your oil and collage pieces! Can you tell us how you choose to work in those mediums?
Just like a balance of line and texture makes for an interesting piece of art, I have to balance those things in my art practice as well. After working on a tediously small collage series, I will often jump into a rather large abstract oil painting. It keeps me fresh and looking.
What pieces do you most enjoy creating?
Collaging for sure. It is my happy place!
Where do you get your collage materials?
Literally everywhere. About a year ago I almost got arrested in front of the Supreme Court Building retrieving a collage material. I was waiting in line with my family to hear a case and saw this piece of peeling paint flowing in the breeze off the public trashcan. I had to have it. As I was walking back to the line with my treasure, a very stern and scary police officer was waiting for me on his tall bicycle. He was soon joined by three additional scary looking officers. My family pretended not to know me as I suffered their interrogation. The bicycle officer insisted I return the paint chip to the trashcan, which I did, but he didn’t know I still had some in the bottom of my bag. It was used on a collage when I got home.
How would describe your signature style?
Colorful, bold, happy, and sometimes irreverent.
Do you have a favorite piece at the moment?
The last piece I created is usually my favorite. If the last piece isn’t my new favorite, I put it in time out. But my all-time very favorite piece has to be “Dictators and other Dicks.” It is a collection of 64 individual oil paintings of well-known Dictators with about eight well-known guys named Dick. The piece has tension. When you see Hitler next to Little Richard, you don’t know whether to laugh or cry.
What is the most valuable piece of advice you’ve been given as an artist?
Create art that makes people want to walk across the room to look at. And, there is nothing romantic about a starving artist
Are there any artists that you look up to, which have inspired your work as an artist?
Definitely Diebenkorn. The first time I saw his little painting of a tomato with a knife, something snapped inside and I knew I wanted to be an artist for the rest of my life. Whatever it took I absolutely had to create art.
What type of art do you collect for you own home?
Mostly abstract figurative art.
Alex Deringer and Courtney Cox combine their formal training in design and fashion with their renowned sense of style in Ivy Lane, a full-service interior design firm that curates casually elegant family dwellings that are elevated by a unique spark. Whether an entire house renovation or a one-room makeover, Alex and Courtney’s extensive experience and collaborative dynamic inform a successful design philosophy: thoroughly understand the client’s lifestyle, bring a thoughtful spatial perspective, and enliven the space with the freshest aesthetic interest.
309C Cameron Street
Alexandria, Virginia 22314