After spending considerable time away from her native state of Montana, Carol Hartman has returned to Bozeman to showcase her newest art exhibit. Although she has travelled extensively with art installations from coast to coast, Hartman still affectionately calls Bozeman her “favorite place on this earth!”
Like many Bozemanites, Hartman fosters a love for nature which is clearly expressed in her work. The exhibit is appropriately titled ‘Concurrent Nature’ for the contemporary landscapes that captivate “the essence of the skies, land, water and air.” The collection is comprised of oil and cattle marker paintings, her first project using color on canvas. Cattle markers, a less traditional medium, are wax and oil crayons primarily used to mark livestock at auctions and help Hartman achieve the rich, colorful blends so prevalent in her art.
The former Bobcat received degrees in K-12 Art Education and Graphic Design, however, strong memories of growing up in rural Eastern Montana equally influence her style. Hartman said she strives to incorporate memories of the past into her dramatic paintings, which represent an immersion into the senses. The paintings also show Hartman’s continued effort to identify with her viewers, allowing them to explore their memories through the senses. Hartman jokes that being away for so long has made her more aware of Bozeman’s beauty, seeing it with “fresh eyes” and inspiring her to paint those big Montana skies we are all so fond of.
“Concurrent Nature” opens today, Jan. 17, with a reception from from 5 – 8 p.m. at the Zoot Gallery, 555 Zoot Enterprises Lane. It will remain until April 26 with the gallery open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Hartman looks forward to seeing new and old faces alike at the free reception.