Berry Fritz

An art teacher once said to me "all art should disturb."  I was young and inexperienced at the time and didn't argue with him, but his admonition dismayed me because even during my teens I rarely had an inclination to deliberately disturb people in the course of my daily life, let alone through my art.  After reflection I decided that I was more comfortable with soothing, uplifting, or at least reassuring people with art that is grounded in reality and that the disturbing stuff should be left to the nightly news and artists with more driven concerns.

I therefore chose a quieter path, which presented equal or even greater technical challenges.  I do not regret my choice at that fork in my road for I have found immense satisfaction exploring the form and color of flowers and fruits, antique dolls, or the varying textures and shapes of the bric-a-brac that is heaped on the shelves of my studio.  

I have been particularly influenced by the Flemish and Dutch tradition of still life and interior scenes. My particular inspirations in art history have been Velasquez, Vermeer, Rembrandt, and Van Dyke. Another influence was Frank Brangwyn, a President of the Royal Academy of the United Kingdom and a cousin of my grandmother.  He was a painter of lush exotica.  

Although I used to revel in such subjects,  Arabian coffee pots and incense burners, Chinese ceramics and lacquer colored textiles, these days I find myself moving closer to home, at least my adopted home in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas. Recent subjects have been my cats, my clown dressed granddaughter, and a collection of old clown dolls touched by the passage of time.

I was born on the Isle of Wight, just off the south coast of England.  I spent my teenage years in the highlands of Scotland, and then lived in London, Morocco, and Canada before settling with my husband in Texas.   I do not have formal art training, but am an obsessive museum and gallery goer and learn something new with every visit. I have benefitted most from daily work in my studio.