Elizabeth Williams and Judith Ogus met in 2010 when they shared a show at SJB’s former Galeria Tonantzin. Judith was hanging illustrations from her Cancer Frog Blog, in which she used the avatar of a frog to recount the challenges of cancer treatment, failing parents, and living in a period of climate change. Elizabeth, also preoccupied with the plight of animals on this warming planet, filled the rest of the gallery with images of ocean life. The two immediately felt a connection and do to this day. They share a mutual love of folk art, stripes and dots, animals, wood cut outs and the use of a myriad of materials. Over the years they have become fast friends, inspiring and encouraging each other in their respective art journeys.
Artist’s Statement • Elizabeth Williams
I use wood, paint, and found objects to make sculptures and paintings. This show will exhibit “Americana” type subjects including winged angels, swimming mermaids, toothed whales, leaping horses, adoring dogs, funky dolls and anthropomorphic robots.
I ‘ve been making art all my life. I grew up in an old New England town in the ‘60’s during an arts and crafts revival. I learned tool use, making things by hand and love of art from my parents. Some of my favorite artists are: James Castle, Edward Hicks, Horace Pippin and Judith Ogus! I admire gothic sculpture, indigenous art and self taught folk/primitive art. I live in Watsonville, CA, where I enjoy looking at the clouds, fields, mountains and bay, having fun with friends, and making art.
Artist’s Statement • Judith Ogus
I am an eclectic artist. I carve, weld, paint, make mobiles, have conceptual art ideas, draw cartoons, pile rocks and takes thousands of photos. From the time I was a little girl my mother dragged my brothers and me to art galleries, museums and ancient ruins. I remember making my first piece of art as a six-year-old — a huge elephant painting. The possibility of making something bigger than myself filled me with joy. Now I make some large things and some very small things, some things material and some things digital.
Animals, the environment and what it is to be human are my sources of inspiration. This show will include carved small chairs, painted wooden cutouts of horses and “Chicken Littles,” butterfly wings and dogs, a mobile of flying birds, Apocalyptic Puzzles and welded fish. We will also have a selection of greeting cards and prints.
I am excited to share this exhibition with Elizabeth Williams. I love her work. When I see new pieces of hers, I either want them or wish I had made them myself. She has taught me to be more playful and free in my own art-making. Her paintings of women flying over landscapes on horseback ring true to my feelings when I am riding – a sense of exaltation and being transported beyond all the worries of the day.