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DAAC workshop continues ‘art of simplification’ for intermediate, advanced artists


If artists were to sign up for the master workshop the Do؜ña Ana Arts Council (DAAC) is offering Feb. 1-13, it could cost $500 or more. But in Las Cruces, the cost is only $250 (DAAC members receive a 20 percent discount), as local artist Nancy Begin and her sister, Florida artist Susan Hansen, are teaching “The Art of Simplification:  Eliminating the Unnecessary to Let the Necessary Speak” for intermediate- and advanced-level artists. The workshop is limited to 16 participants.

The workshop will be held 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11; 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Feb. 12-13 at DAAC Arts & Cultural Center, 1740 Calle de Mercado, suite D, in Bulletin Plaza.

“We are just incredibly lucky that Nancy Begin lives here, and her sister can combine a family visit with the workshop,” said Kathleen Albers of DAAC. “They gave a similar workshop last year and it was very, very well received. They don't teach painting techniques at this level, but truly taking artists to the next level of composition and color choice.”

The workshop will build on the principles Begin and Hansen covered in their "Art of Simplification" workshop held in February 2019 at DAAC.  It is not necessary to have attended the prior workshop to attend this one, Albers said.

“We will be moving ahead with the art of simplification of your image,” Begin and Hansen said about their new workshop. “In the process, what element are you willing to focus/change: color, shape, space, scale, value, in order to create a stronger more powerful and personal image?”

The artists will present slide shows each day of the workshop “to encourage you to explore a new approach to your work.”

Topics will include "The Emancipation of Color," which reveals the struggles and achievements of the early artists of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, who “gave us the unchallenged gift of how personal color choice allows ‘color to do all the talking,’" Begin and Hansen said, quoting artist Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (1869-1954).

Those who attend the workshop must bring appropriate supplies: 1) Any water-based medium such as watercolors, watercolor pencils/crayons, liquid acrylics, black and white gouache, inks. The only exclusion is water-based oils, because of the drying time; 2) Plenty of watercolor paper of your choice; 3) All sorts of brushes, shapers and scraping tools, such as credit cards, palette knives, sticks, forks, etc.; 4) Masking tape, tracing paper, paper towels, water container, small piece of sandpaper (120 grade) pencils and sketch pads; 5) References of your choice (landscape, figure, still life, etc.) and a single object, something rather small, like a shell, kitchen tool, toy, etc.; 6) Your own lunch.

For more information, call 575-528-8455.