Arts and Entertainment

Accomplished multi-media artist graces hub

The fiber art and oil paintings of island artist Kathleen Otley are currently on display in the Bayview Cash Store’s hub.

Otley is one of the many artists actively being promoted by the Open Door Gallery + Coffee.

“We want the public to understand what’s going on with the art in the hub,” said Open Door Gallery manager Sandra Whiting.

“Who the artists are and what we’re trying to achieve; exposure and sales for the artists.”

Otley works in both fiber and painting. Some pieces combine the two media. Her willow sculptures are created from farmed willow that is peeled and dyed before being joined by ropes, metals and her own hand spun wools.

Her fine art paintings may include willow, paper and metal within the composition, layering paint to achieve an ancient-looking surface and an intriguing symbolism.

This body of work is described by the artist as “contemporary primitive.” The art is a bridge for the artist and the viewer to connect to the past, Otley said. She said her art seeks to reveal that period in human history when the spirit of nature and human existence were in balance.

Otley has an impressive list of credits regarding the exhibition of her work.

She was selected by a national jury of gallery owners, craft promoters, museum curators and fine art and craft professionals to include her biography in the publication “Profiles: Who’s Who in American Crafts.”

In 1993, Otley was invited by the White House and the Smithsonian to create an ornament for the White House Christmas tree.

She wrapped fine white branches with silver and gold threads in a “horn of plenty” shape. These ornaments were later put on display in a New York museum and now are part of the Smithsonian collection of contemporary crafts.

Otley was also one of 10 women artists chosen to exhibit past and present work in the 20th Anniversary Retrospective Art Show, at the 1994 National Women’s Music Festival.

Otley’s work is part of corporate art collections at ABC Television, Apple Computer, AT&T, Pac Bell, Stanford Medical Center, Los Angeles County Courthouse, City of San Francisco, San Francisco State University and San Francisco Federal Savings.

The Bayview Cash Store hub show runs through June 30. Visit Otley’s Web site www.otleyart.com for more information about her work.

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