Creations from wax: Guest Artist 2021 arrives

We are thrilled to introduce all of you to Patricia Aaron, Colorado Academy’s Guest Artist of the 2021-2022 school year. Aaron is a well-known Denver artist, and we feel so fortunate that our students will get to know and learn from her.

Every year, the Visual Arts Department selects a guest artist to partner with us for the year. We know that it is important for our young artists to meet professionals in the field and to learn first-hand from them what the business of making art looks like, as well as have insight into what an artist’s creative process looks like from start to finish.

Aaron met some of our students in late October. She gave them a tour of her exhibition of work in our Ponzio Arts Center Gallery. The scale and color of her work is truly captivating. It was incredible to watch a group of Second Graders from Mrs. Rockmore’s class dissect the aspects of Aaron’s paintings for close to a full hour. She described where her ideas come from, and what inspires her shapes and colors. “Everyone’s unique voices are important and can come through in your art,” says Aaron.

 Waxing creative

You must come by the gallery during the first two weeks of November and experience Patricia Aaron’s work in person. You will not believe that her paintings are created from wax. This medium is called encaustic, and it was first used to paint portraits in the Romano-Egyptian time period (100-300 CE). Today, artists use pigments and wax to create the most modern of paintings and sculptures. In fact, we anticipate that some of our ceramics students will be inspired by Aaron’s encaustic medium, and may try applying wax to their vessels.

From Left: Katy Hills and Patricia Aaron

In early November, several artists from all three divisions will participate in a workshop with Aaron. They will melt wax on griddles, apply pigment between layers of transparent beeswax, and then carve into the layers for textural effects. Encaustic is an expressive medium that is playful and fun to work with, in addition to being beautiful to look at. We are thrilled to bring this historic and contemporary medium to our artists, and so grateful that Patricia Aaron could bring it to our community.

We will be hosting an exhibition closing reception on Thursday, November 11 in the Ponzio Arts Center. Alongside her work, we will be displaying the work of our students who will have worked with her. Patricia Aaron’s work will be on display until November 15. Don’t miss it.