Saturday, August 23, 2008

Everything I do is influenced by having grown up in Humboldt County, CA in the late 50's-early 70's. During that time our remote area was heavily dependent on commercial salmon fishing & crabbing, logging, lumber mills, and dairy farming. I loved where I lived; it was beautiful and wild.

As a kid, I witnessed the fallout from large scale harvesting and widespread use of herbicides, pesticides, and other chemicals in the woods of the “Redwood Empire”, the damming of our rivers and - after these incredibly shortsighted practices - the social and economic devastation that resulted from the near failure of our fishing and lumber industries. I’m concerned with the decline of the fisheries and family farms which sustain and strengthen a local economy, and the effect processed, bioengineered, and chemically treated food has on our world.
A pulp mill and a plywood mill operated on the narrow strip of sand that separates our bay from the Pacific, and a nuclear power plant built on an earthquake fault operated at the edge of town, just across from the entrance to the bay.
As a result, I’ve seen health issues following chemical and other toxic exposure that low income population centers are subject to, firsthand, and have seen how whole segments of our population are discarded because of their location, and poverty.
I want to work to help a local, sustainable, and healthy economy flourish, and in addition, help to keep the wealth of knowledge we still have in traditional food production and preparation.

One of my grandpas organized lumber workers as a young man working himself in the woods of Washington state; the other grew up in what became Yosemite National Park and practiced law. They both emphasized to me the importance of fair treatment of people and respect for their labor.

Something I also learned growing up in my family and my community was how it doesn’t hurt sometimes to try to walk in another person’s shoes, and that even with important issues when things get too heavy, like right about now, a good laugh is worth more than just about anything.

I hope my artwork can reflect the beauty of the human form at work, the beauty of the natural world & how humans are a part of it, and still have some humor too.
Through use of textured, tactile and layered surfaces in painting, and looking for ”the moment between moments; the measure left unmeasured” in drawing, I hope I can convey some of the joy I’ve seen in labor, the beauty in renewal and decay, things falling apart, and also very much the joy I’ve gotten from both the land and the sea.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Paintings and Drawings

Linda Degnan Cobos is a painter and mixed media artist living in Friday
Harbor, Washington with her husband and son. Her work has been shown at Gallery Mezzotint, Island Museum of Art of Friday Harbor, and at the Gallery at Art Students League on 57th & 7th Avenue in Manhattan. Linda has studied since 2007 during month long sabbaticals at the Art Students League in New York with George Cannata, Marybeth McKenzie, Nikki Orbach, Charles Hinman, and Mariano Del Rosario among other nationally recognized artists.
She considers it her great good fortune to have traveled on art trips with her friend Friday Harbor painter Annie Howell Adams to France, Holland, Belgium, and most recently, NYC .

Linda’s worked many years developing textures.
She combines her experience with pigmented clay, lime, and gypsum plasters, fresco & scraffito work, beeswax and other natural materials with her work in oil, pen, pencil, conte, and acrylics.
Working outdoors (plein air), or in the studio, she's painted and drawn in northern France, Paris and New York, also in abstract, and painted and drawn the figure from life. Her work is recognized by her strong sense of color, confident line quality, simple, expressive brush strokes, and use of texture.

A founding member of Slow Food Land and Sea convivium, she has a longtime interest in food & water issues and education, and in preserving local food traditions. These interests are reflected in her fresco work. She's a founding member of the Creative Women's Compendium of San Juan Island. Linda's currently working on a series of people and their work, with emphasis on island farmers and fair labor and food practices.

"I'm also a member, with 7 other island artists, of a weekly group painting and drawing from the model. Since 2007, I've been part of Ann Walbert’s drawing and painting group, with graceful dancer Linda Downes as primary model, and other island models such as Claudia Mills and, earlier, Ramsay Milne. I feel lucky and happy to be part of this group. Working with Bryn, Dick, Annie, Paul, Sherry, Matt and Ann is very inspiring. And sketching from poses held for a relatively short time helps train my eye to look for the essence of a gesture and to find a key to the feeling behind it - that's what I like."
The group exhibited at two shows at Island Museum of Art in 2008.

Linda Degnan Cobos' work can be seen at her studio and gallery wall
at Barbara and Matt Dollahite's workshop/ studio space, Studio 210, on Nichols Street in Friday Harbor, Washington.
She currently supports herself mainly with work as a drywall taper and plasterer, as a deckhand commercial fishing in the Puget Sound and Bristol Bay, AK, and milks Jersey cows and picks tomatoes for two San Juan Island farmers. (Read about the benefits of fresh, raw milk here.)

Paintings and Drawings

Oil, acrylic, and mixed media paintings, and drawings in charcoal pencil and conte crayon on canvas and paper, vellum and newsprint. abstracts. plein air landscapes, nudes, studies, figure drawing