Bonnie Hartenstein

My process as a painter is very eclectic. For over 40 years, I have worked in oil, acrylic, mixed media, watercolor, monoprint, collage, pastels, and photocollage. I have learned that “Necessity is the mother of invention.” Depending on what I am trying to express, I will mix any media together that I find necessary and exciting.

I think of painting as a dialogue between the artist and her materials — a compositional interaction. I leave space for the energy of the painting to “tell me” where to go, where to make my mark, when to activate an area, when to be still. The painting leaves me space to offer my experience, and also to exercise control. This to me, is actually the way life works.

When I work in an form, I always want to learn. After I am done with a work, and also when I get feedback from others, I begin to understand the deeper levels (or sometimes the funnier levels) that a work is about. The journey of the artist never ends.