Fran Hardy (Artist)
Drawings of Trees
About the Artist
All of my work focuses on the natural world especially native flora and its preservation. I am particularly fascinated by ancient trees and this ongoing series of my most recent work focuses on the infinite variety and importance of trees. I hope that by drawing the public’s attention to the otherworldly beauty of trees and native flora it will draw attention to why they need to be saved for their unique visual beauty and their key role in preserving the sustainability of our environment. The trees are large drawings on panel also utilizing watercolor and various acrylic grounds. An eye for meticulous detail infuses my work and often various magical creatures will make themselves known to the viewer within the twisting bark of my trees. My early childhood was spent in the solitary pursuit of reading magic books and fairy tales and along with my desire to save the natural world and vanishing ancient trees these forest sprites emerge unbidden and subconsciously as I draw. I believe that trees are sentient beings that feel and breath in unique ways that we can not yet comprehend.
Fran has had six solo museum shows as well as being co-producer of a series of documentaries called the Creative-Native Project with her husband filmmaker Bob Demboski. The series focuses on different regions of the United States in each one and the intersection of art, creativity, mentoring, cultural preservation and ecological sustainability. Their documentaries have aired on PBS stations, on FEC-TV, a national educational channel, at museums along with installations of Fran’s work and at botanical gardens as well as being used as a teaching tool by various groups such as the Florida Native Plant Society. Their most recent project in progress is on Oklahoma with underwriting from two museums there and will not only premiere next year but include a show of the creative individuals interviewed as well as a installation by Fran at the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art.
Article by James Day
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