Today we’d like to introduce you to Elynn Kröger
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
My first memories are of drawing with pen and ink and graphite. There were no art education classes available. I learned about color mixing in the paint department at the local hardware store. My parents’ idea of a truly great artist was Norman Rockwell, and so I was weaned on the illustration artists. The first time I picked up a brush was when my father handed me a bucket of yellow pigment…I went to a neighbor with a 4′ x 4′ sheet of Masonite and he showed me how to make paint out of pigment…without any frame of reference, the second I picked up the brush I was abstract. Before that, I did portraits and still lives, but that brush changed everything into abstract and landscape…
By the time I went to college, I didn’t want my art to be about a “job”, so I went into education. However, three months into my first teaching job and I knew I had chosen the wrong career. And so, I took on any job to pay the rent so I could paint. I moved to Boston, thinking if I could make it there, I would go on to New York. Unfortunately, I couldn’t handle city living and ended up in Gloucester by way of Anchorage, Provincetown, and Newport. Now I am in Gloucester, Ma and am an active member of the Rocky Neck Art Colony. I have my own gallery. I paint every day, I make just enough money with my sales, and I am a part of a very supportive community.
Please tell us about your art.
I think every artist is born with a vocabulary. Mine includes color, line, and landscape. I grew up sewing and weaving and had three grandparents who tatted, embroidered, crocheted, and made hand clothing and shoes. Consequently, a textile quality can be seen in my work. I also enjoy color juxtaposition and luminosity. Intuitive, abstract, gestural, calligraphic, spatial and organic…I have a broad range. I work primarily with water-based media as well as graphite and oil sticks. My supports are canvas, paper, and board. Sometimes, hundreds of layers go into a single work…regardless of size, any given piece can take months, sometimes years, to finish.
When I paint, I don’t start with a concept or an image (although imagery sometimes creeps in). I am not expressing my feelings. It is a practice in mindfulness’ starting with a color and a brush stroke, following each mark as in a conversation. Someone once asked me, what was my intention. I said, to finish the painting I was working on so I could start the next one. That was not what he wanted to hear, but that’s all I have. And, in the long run, it’s always about and in the doing.
What do you think about conditions for artists today? Has life become easier or harder for artists in recent years? What can cities like ours do to encourage and help art and artists thrive?
There are more artists and consequently, there is more competition. I think people should stop treating the artist as the customer…asking for entry fees, hanging fees, paying to show their work, paying for the jurors, the rent, paying someone to gallery sit who sits and doesn’t sell the art because the rent’s been paid, paying for the cash awards, donating art for fundraisers…so more free exhibition opportunities would be real nice.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
My work can be seen at the Elynn Kröger Gallery, open year-round on Rocky Neck in Gloucester, Ma. I also have a current solo exhibition at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester. I have a website, elynnkroger.com and I post my work on Facebook and Instagram.
- Address: 15 Rocky Neck Ave 2nd floor
Gloucester, Ma 01930
- Website: www.elynnkroger.com
- Phone: 9782823467
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: elynnkrogergallery
- Facebook: Elynn Kroger