Katherine Taylor—Thinking Wild
August 5, 2022 at 3:00 pm - August 31, 2022 at 7:00 pm
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Thinking Wild, opening August 5, from 3-7pm during the Old Mill District’s First Friday Gallery Walk, features a new collection of Katherine Taylor’s poignant wildlife portraits. The exhibit will be up through August.
Katherine’s oil paintings of animals are so intimate, their spirits and personalities shine through. This exhibit includes a bobcat, raccoon, wild horses, a fox, an owl and many more…all in action and with eyes that that make you feel you can see into their reality. A “painter of light and dark”, she succeeds in portraying their wildness and their natures by employing the dramatic chiaroscuro lighting and luminous glazing she learned from her classical art training.
A portion of the proceeds from this show will be donated to the non-profit, Think Wild, a local animal hospital dedicated to providing care to injured or orphaned native animals so as to facilitate their successful release back into the wild. “I am a big fan of the work that Think Wild does in our local community; these dedicated individuals not only volunteer their time to rehabilitate native birds and mammals, they advocate for wildlife conservation. Their hospital compound off Neff Road in Bend continues to grow to accommodate the many species they treat, as well as to provide a venue for public educational events. I wanted my August art exhibit to help highlight the good work this group does,” says Katherine.
Katherine’s original love as an artist is painting the human figure. However, wildlife portraiture has proven to be just as compelling for her. “It’s the spirit of a sentient being that I am ultimately most interested in capturing, and animals have spirit in spades.”
In choosing which wildlife to paint for the show, Katherine handpicked mammals and birds local to Oregon that best captured the spirit of the species. Only two of the animals featured, the Kiger Mustangs and the mountain lion, are not treated at the Think Wild hospital but are included in their Oregon wildlife conservation-education efforts.
Katherine’s initial wild animal easy picks were from the lynx genus, the bobcat and the mountain lion. They are closely related to the domestic cat, and being a cat caregiver herself, she is a fan! Though she has never been granted her life-long wish to experience a red fox sighting, painting one turned out to be the next best thing. She discovered foxes have the most fascinating eye color and came to appreciate the eyes of many of the animals she painted. “The bobcat and cougar have riveting eyes, but so do hawks, owls, and falcons. And the bald eagle I captured in paint really surprised me with its pale green glitter-eye.”
This quote by Anthropologist Loren Eiseley partly explains why Katherine chose to paint close-up portraits of the wild animals in her August exhibit:
“One does not meet oneself until one catches the reflection from an eye other than human.”
If you come across an injured or orphaned wild animal that needs help call the Think Wild hotline at 541-241-8680.