CHRONICLING 40 YEARS OF ART MAKING
The Ormond Memorial Art Museum is honored to host a retrospective exhibition chronicling 40 years of work by renowned Florida artist Beau Wild. Featuring 82 works of art from various phases of her career, Observation Stories: The Wild Years showcases her remarkable talent, vision, and versatility through her paintings, sculptures, assemblages, and video. This one-of-a-kind exhibit is curated by Fran Gardner, distinguished professor emerita of art and art history at the University of South Carolina Lancaster.
The seven-week exhibition will open with a reception from 6 to 8pm Thursday, Aug. 24, 2023, with live music, light refreshments, and a chance to meet both the artist and the curator. The reception is free and open to the public. OMAM's premier-level members are invited to an intimate gallery talk with Wild and Gardner.
“We are so pleased to announce this exhibition and to give our community a glimpse into the amazing and inspiring career of Beau Wild. OMAM has had a special relationship with Beau for many years. It is our honor to host this very personal and intimate view of her life’s work,” said Museum Director Stephanie Mason-Teague.
Wild studied occupational therapy at Tufts University and painting at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, both in Boston. She worked as a therapist and a painter for decades, finding inspiration in both fields. She returned to her childhood hometown of Daytona Beach in 1983 after 22 years in New England. Since then, she has shown work in art festivals, competitions, and museums both nationally and internationally. In 2015, she was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award during a competition in Cincinnati, Ohio. Today, Wild paints daily in her studio on Rose Bay in Port Orange.
Held in private and public collections around the world, Wild's paintings are inspired by her personal experiences, emotions, and observations. She uses color, shape, texture, and movement to create compositions. She paints both realistic and abstract portraits and figures that capture the essence and personality of her subjects. She also explores themes such as identity, spirituality, nature, and social issues. Her paintings are often described as bold, dynamic, and expressive.
Gardner earned her BFA from Columbia College and her MFA from Vermont College of Norwich University. For 32 years, she taught studio courses and art history at the University of South Carolina Lancaster. She has exhibited her work regionally and nationally and published in several books and magazines. She has also collaborated with Wild on other projects, including a book in 2014 titled “Between The Seen and The Unseen.” Gardner curated this retrospective exhibition to celebrate Wild’s artistic journey and highlight her contributions to the contemporary art scene.
“It is a rare opportunity for an artist to see their work, collectively, over a lifetime. To see the work together, like this exhibit, from a sustained period of years -- this holds levels of meaning. It signifies the artist has built an esteemed reputation. In its entirety, it is a demonstration of the artist’s commitment to her work and herself. To her audience, it is not simply a sequential arrangement of work, but rather it is an example of one artist’s exploration of herself and her culture,” said Gardner.
Both women will share their passion and expertise with fellow artists during upcoming workshops at OMAM. Gardner's three-day program (Aug. 29-30) will help participants develop a closer relationship with creativity, and Beau's two-day program (Sept. 14-15) will focus on celebrating and recreating elements of nature's inspirations using a personal and emotional approach. For tuition information and other workshop details, please visit ormondartmuseum.org.
The Ormond Memorial Art Museum & Gardens is a nonprofit organization founded in 1946 with a mission to inspire the community through art and nature while honoring those who fought for freedom. The Museum's main exhibition galleries display between six and eight shows a year featuring work by professional artists in various mediums. OMAM offers educational and outreach programs for veterans and children, and people in medical situations through the Art of Healing workshop series. The museum is located at 78 E. Granada Blvd., in Ormond Beach, and is open from 10am to 4pm weekdays and from noon to 4pm on weekends. Admission is by donation; $2 per person suggested. Entry is always free to current members and US veterans. To learn more, visit ormondartmuseum.org, call 386-676-3347, or follow @ormondartmuseum on Facebook and Instagram.
To arrange an interview with Beau Wild and/or Fran Gardner, please contact Amber Green, Manager of Marketing & Public Relations. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone: 386-676-3347 (office); 386-682-9480 (cell)