Our gallery showcases some of the finest acrylic paintings in Colorado, including deep, vibrant pieces by Talia Swartz and narrative work by Svetlana Piltingsrud that draws the viewer into contemplation and reflection.
Born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, Talia Swartz has been creating art ever since she was a child. Her love of energetic cityscapes and whimsical shapes are emphasized in her vibrant and dynamic acrylic paintings. Talia earned her Master’s Degree in Art from Adams State University and focused on painting. Talia has been consistently showing and selling her paintings for the past few years in Denver and Breckenridge, CO. When Talia is not busy painting in her home studio in the Denver Highlands, she can be found teaching a variety of art classes to both children and adults.
A statement from the artist: "I was born in 1974 in rural town not far from Saint Petersburg, Russia. While I was still young my parents moved to western Siberia, but every year I came back to where I was born to spend the whole summer with my Grandmother. As a child I always liked to draw, sew and make dolls out of wooden sticks and anything else I found on the ground. My favorite dolls were made out of dandelions: the bud for a head, flower for the skirt and stems for arms and legs. To this day, a spring full of dandelions has a special place in my heart, as well as the simple life my Grandmother lived. This is why such things are so often resembled in my paintings. I said goodbye to Siberia right after I graduated high school, and moved to Saint Petersburg. This city strongly developed me as a person. The "Cultural Capital" of Russia, it stands up to it's nickname. Numerous museums, theaters, exhibitions and the beauty of this city's architecture were a huge source of inspiration for a hungry mind like mine, but it was intimidating as well. I felt that I never could create art as beautiful as that I saw in museums and I chose to not even try. In 2001 I moved to the United States and married a wonderful guy. In 2004 I enrolled in Pueblo Community College with an initial goal to study interior design. Early on I took a class in 2-D Design and started painting for the first time in many years. Following this were three additional levels of painting classes and waves of encouragement from my art instructor and my husband. Today I am a full time artist and have no regrets about it, and even if I will never be as good as the artists that inspire me, I am certain I can bring out the best in myself. I will keep painting and enjoying it, while hoping to inspire others to pick up a paint brush. "
Sandy has been a full-time resident of Pagosa Springs, Colorado since 1995. She was born in Wisconsin, raised in Illinois, and attended art school in Chicago. She is currently devoting her time to creating and marketing her artwork, as well as skiing, hiking, reading, and gardening. She studied art in college, spent many years in a variety of careers and past-times, but always created and experimented with art media. With the addition of several workshops with notables such as Pierre Mion, Gary Greene, Vera Curnow, Stephen Quiller, and Sean Dye, she is free to use her “Artistic License” to create whatever reality she dreams Starting to draw and “doodle” as a teenager, she always knew she was destined to do things differently. This is evident in one very early photograph of her with her two sisters and brother: the other three stand erect, hands at their sides, facing the camera head-on with nice smiles on their faces. Sandy however has arms akimbo, is turned 45 degrees to the left, eyes closed with a scrunched-up little grin on her face. No wonder that she calls her artwork “Reality With a Twist”. Sandy’s artwork deals with shape, color and ideas: definitely with her own version of reality. She works primarily in acrylic, watercolor, and pen and ink. Her newest medium is oil-based ink in which she creates Monoprints on paper or canvas, a method learned from Shy Rabbit’s Michael Coffee – his reductive-ink process. She often incorporates mixed media to create unusual effects. She likes to have several series of different subject matter in the works at one time, this helps to keep her images and ideas fresh and lively. Her colors are bold, exciting and vibrant. Her images are partly literal, but she incorporates “other-worldly” or abstract elements also. Many pieces contain suggestions of the macrocosmic or microcosmic in them, often using circles or repetition to indicate the on-going cyclic nature of life. She keeps a sense of humor about her, and loves to leave room in her work for the mysterious, the personal interpretation.