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Art Watch : Amberlee Rosolowich

Amberlee Rosolowich is our Art Watch Artist for today. This section is brought to you by Art From Us and Divvya Nirula. The Artists we spotlight here can be from any field, across any discipline, and using a variety of media. We share here why we think they are important and worth watching. Be it genius creators of eras gone by. Or the upcoming contemporary artist who is yet to have their first show. All come under the purview of Art Watch.

I discovered Amberlee Rosolowich and her paintings early in 2015. Having walked into a gallery in singapore I was spellbound by her canvases. Working in the traditional oil-on-canvas, Rosolowich displays her love for animals by combining them with images of children in various ‘circumstances’. Be it flying in the air with balloons and foxes, or performing a balancing act with a peacock. Each and every one of her works in this series is magical. Join me in fan-girling over her creations!

The incredibly talented artist, Amberlee Rosolowich was born in Canada, and raised in Oahu, Hawaii.  .

Her body of work includes a coming together of two different worlds. That of children and animals and she explores the affinity they have for each other. Her paintings bring together children and animals in secret and warm moments of play and leisure. Each of her creations have an illustrative quality. It is not a matter of chance that these creations are at once comforting and compelling.

Why Amberlee Rosolowich?

What draws attention to her craft is that despite the childlike subject matter of her choice, she shows a definitive, sophisticated and mature painting style. It is extremely aesthetically presented. Rosolowich’s skill and technique are essential facets of her work. The light, quick brushstrokes invest the figures and the space around them with much movement, all the while providing a sense of calm. Technically speaking, the tactful use of negative space gives the viewer a direct and instant entry into a world where danger is studiously left out, and innocence is ever-present. The carefully applied splashes of colour adorn the overall playful feeling she generates with these pieces. The works are instantly emotionally accessible to both children and adults. The pieces will undoubtedly appeal to many, from the first sighting itself, and that is the power of excellent narrative.

Rosolowich has shared that her mother was a Marine biologist and she was employed as a zookeeper. It was during her “weekends at work” with her mother that she was drawn to the animal behaviours and the symbiotic relationship between the worlds of animals and people, especially little people.

Creatively bent, this apt observer of animal behaviour had pockets full of doodles of zoo things. A part of her game was imagining chit chat with her animal friends. It was a powerful tool for someone who had several difficulties in her childhood. It gave her an outlet for her feelings. With all her heart as a child she imagined these animals would protect her in darker moments. And be privy to understanding parts of her mind and heart.

“As a painter I have placed these moments into a lighter version of silly and playful quiet paintings”. Says Rosolowich, she shares with the world what once was a source of comfort.

Art & Animal Behaviour

This is perhaps why in her work the animal always has a guardian-like relationship with the child, watching over protectively, such that each child may play without worry. A basic human child right. One of the works that highlights this relationship is “Kruger Comforts”.  Portrays a massive rhinoceros standing guard over a young boy who is reading on the ground. Rhinos are powerful beasts and the power emanates in the art. The rhino provides the boy tenderly with safety and refuge, yet the rhino appears to be in a state of slumber, thereby acting as both a safeguard and a fantasy for the child, an echo from her own memory. Apart from her personal investment in the work, they also empower the viewer to draw into the well of their own imagination and to fully benefit from the work.

With an increasing focus on animal welfare and the fair and humane treatment of animals – people are more aware how the human population threatens, abuses and overall undermines animals habitats and basic feelings. Not that she is part of a political movement – but it is her personal statement that she makes.

Amberlee Rosolowich received her BFA in Painting from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco in 2009. Her works are famous and coveted and has been featured in S.F. Weekly and California Home and Design.

“My body of work is inspired by my hearts attention towards animals and their behaviours. Learning alongside of them, and watching their struggles, yet still mostly fun approach to life. I am continually in awe at their relationships, light-heartedness, and curiosity.”

For more Artists handpicked by Divvya Nirula – explore the ART WATCH archive.

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