Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A Bay Area Figurative Artist Emerges

Swedish-Born Bay Area Figurative Artist, Anna Poole - 1960-2012

It's Anna's combination of hot and cool colors (evoking the clash of sun and sea) that first drew our attention. We then went on a fantastic journey through her extensive collection of works that captured a passion for the elements (water, land) and the human form. Painting after painting, the female form slowly materialized from the sea and land as if created by it and eternally fused with it. She re-imagined the classic Bay Area Figurative themes of water and bathing of Elmer Bischoff (1916-1991) with a sensual spirit and a primal energy.

Anna Poole graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute in the early 1980s and set up her life and studio in San Francisco. In addition to several one-woman shows in Bodega Bay and Freestone, group shows at San Francisco's Live Worms Gallery in North Beach,  and shows in her native Sweden, Anna opened her studio to visitors annually during the city's Open Studios event. For a big part of her life she lived on a houseboat in the San Francisco Bay together with her husband, Al, and also explored the Tropical islands of Panama in their sloop sailboat.  During their many sailing trips, Poole would paint from both the boat and the beach. Sometimes she painted images directly from nature in a realistic manner reminiscent of Winslow Homer. Other times she went deep into the water, rocks and shells, often taking the smallest natural form and giving it a mysterious, sculptural presence.

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