Art association

NH Art Association artist Roberta Garrison exhibits at the Art Center

DOVER – The New Hampshire Art Association, headquartered in Portsmouth, has partnered with The Art Center, owned by Rebecca Proctor, located in the Washington Mill in Dover.

Artist Roberta Garrison will be exhibiting at the site in March and April. His exhibition, titled “The Botanical Collection”, will feature works from his new medium – pressed plants.

“My life, as well as my art, is constantly evolving,” Garrison said. “When the pandemic first hit and we were the first in lockdown, I spent my time expanding my gardens.

“Weather cycles and the constant change in what grows around us have inspired me to preserve botanicals,” she added.

“I started collecting and pressing everything, including flowers, leaves and herbs. Even weeds can be interesting when pressed.

Garrison has worked with a range of mediums for many years, primarily encaustics, oils, sculpture and now pressed plants.

Having grown up in a diplomatic family for Panama, she is lucky to have lived in Vienna and Paris and to have traveled a lot. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of California as well as the Design Institute of California.

"To look upward" plants pressed by Roberta Garrison

For over 20 years, Garrison’s professional career has been that of a certified interior designer/architect. Her love of art remains a big part of her life. She attributes her life and upbringing in Europe, Central America and the United States to the diversity of her artistic styles.

Taking art lessons from an array of teachers from different countries opened her eyes to countless ways to express herself. Garrison and her husband Peter now reside in Exeter.

“As an artist, I loved challenging myself using different mediums,

Garrison said. “Somehow, while experimenting with my plants, my work evolved into breeding birds. There is something about the way their wings and feathers mimic nature and I am captivated by their beautiful movement, natural grace and stunning poses.

Inspired by photographs, Garrison recreates birds using only pressed plants. His subjects range from herons, swans, egrets, hummingbirds, ducks, exotic birds and more.

The art center is a creative community with over 6,000 square feet of space that includes 10 artist studios, a rotating artist-in-residence studio, workshop space, a music stage, theatrical performances and poetry readings, and ample exhibition space for a variety of exhibitions and art shows.

Garrison’s exhibit, with all of the works for sale, can also be viewed on the NHAA’s website, www.nhartassociation.org.