Diane Clancy's Art

Diane Clancy's Art, Enhance Your Spirit
Recorder "Art Scene" Article, August 31, 2006

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The Recorder, Greenfield, Mass., Thursday, August 31, 2006 Art Scene Diane Clancy's art of healing Diane Clancy, an artist and resident of Greenfield, will be displaying her artwork at the Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton. This modern day place of healing is a very fitting venue for an artist who has stated that her desire and ” ...purpose as an artist is to uplift and inspire people.” Certainly, we have all had our moments when we could do with a little inspiration, whether it is to help us recover from sickness, feed our creative souls in the production of writing, music and art, or simply to give us encouragement in the pursuits of our everyday lives. Clancy hopes that, after viewing her paintings, collages and digital works, we might be better able to connect with our own deepest, most personal selves. In return, Clancy explains, “Your response then touches my soul and encourages me to create.” Clancy didn't always see herself as an artist. In fact, she was on her way to procuring a bachelor's degree in both computer science and math at the University of Massachusetts- Amherst when her world changed dramatically. It was the combined stresses of her school studies and dealing with a very serious, chronic and what would become a lifelong ailment that caused Clancy to feel she needed a respite. So she decided to sign up for a textile and design class. It was here that a teacher recognized her creative skills and convinced her to change her major. Being an artist was not an acceptable profession in Clancy's family. When you couple that thought with the idea that “math and science are based on common sense and logic,” and that for Clancy, making art is a bit like “jumping off a cliff,” even just entertaining the notion of holding and using a paintbrush was amazing. And yet, here she is among us, bravely painting what is at the core of her own personal universe. Clancy's work is about spirit; yours, mine and hers. “My paintings feature vibrant color and vision,” explains the artist. “These works are vivid and express transformation by looking at things in new ways.” A friend of Clancy's commented one day that her work “borders on the edge of abstract and realism.” It is true that Clancy will often start with a figure, a face or even a piece of fabric she finds compelling. She may then draw with pastels, paint and/or cut and paste her images together, following some inner voice or other-worldly guidance to a completed piece. Sometimes, a finished piece was created with just the use of a computer. At other times, it is a combination of materials and mediums that will draw out the essence of that particular imagery. Clancy wants to convey a sense of wonder with her art and states that she “reaches into the universe of her soul to create.” “Painting keeps me connected to the sense of the mystery of life,” explains the artist. Certainly mystery flourishes in the two pieces titled “The Hideaway” and “Reflections in Blue.” “Sight” and “Conundrum I” are both elaborate pieces that greatly display the artist's use and command of the mediums. With the controlled application of their bright colors in an invisible, almost geometric style, they are filled with mystery and intrigue. But they also display a sense of all-knowing and calm. Clancy has not only been working hard at making art, she is also spending a sizable amount of time promoting her work. In 1998, the artist formally launched The Art of Diane Clancy as a business. She now offers many of her images as archival reproductions that are matted and framed or unframed, as well as greeting cards. When asked what her artistic goals are for the future, Clancy would like to see a day when the business side of her art making will be running smoothly enough on its own to not require so much of her time. Coupled with that is the desire to meet and network with more artists. “I want to get to know artists and gain strength today by moving ahead together,” explains Clancy, “by building the arts in this area.” Clancy has shown her dedication to the greater community in other ways, as well. Over the years, the artist has been active in peace, environmental and health issues. She has also been involved with social and economic justice concerns. Clancy was the founder of The People's Voice of Franklin County. Published quarterly by an all-volunteer staff, the publication is intended to be a means for progressive community members to share their insights, ideas and questions. The artist also has a graphic design and Web site construction business with her partner, Susan Elkin. Together, they feel that they can offer a unique experience for their clients. Working closely together, they are able to create marketing materials that showcase each client's individual needs and uniqueness. Clancy's archival reproductions and greeting cards can be purchased at Salmon Falls in Shelburne, the Fiber Art Center and Hastings in Amherst, The Female Spirit in Easthampton, Books & More and the Discovery Center in Turners Falls, Green Fields Market, the Visitors Center and Greenfield Community College in Greenfield, Whole Foods in Hadley, the Wandering Wolf in South Deerfield, the Wendell Country Store and Pride and Joy in Northampton. Clancy's artwork will be on display at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton from Friday, Sept. 1, through Saturday, Sept. 30. Located at 30 Locust St., the show will also be featuring the photographs of Susan Elkin. An artist's reception will be held on Thursday, Sept. 7, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served. This event is free and open to the public. For more information regarding Clancy's artwork, her graphic design business or The People's Voice, please contact the artist directly via e-mail diane@dianeclancy.com, phone (413) 773-7333, or go online at www.dianeclancy.com. Cheryl Rezendes Rulewich is a local artist and art teacher whose work has been exhibited nationally. She is affiliated with Green Trees Gallery in Northfield, the Pushkin Gallery in Greenfield and The Fiber Arts Center in Amherst. You can contact her at rezendes@crocker.com.

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