Ron Fortier


Seeds of Change

February 17, 2023

Seeds of Change – Paintings of Climate Change and Hope at the Pleiades Gallery in NYC…

Climate change is the greatest threat to our existence in our short history on this planet. Nobody’s going to buy their way out of its effects.

Mark Ruffalo

This is a quick article about Heather Stivison an award-winning visual artist whose work has been and continues to be exhibited in museums, universities, and galleries across the United States and in juried exhibits in Europe and Asia.

Her one-person exhibit at the Pleiades Gallery in New York City is next month. The exhibition is called – Heather Stivison: Seeds of Change
Paintings of Climate Change and Hope.

The exhibit runs from March 21 through to April 15, 2023, with an opening reception on Saturday, March 25th from 3 to 5 in the evening. This is not her first foray into the subjects of the environment, the ocean, or climate change.

To say she is a human dynamo is an absolute understatement but Heather is a human dynamo! She currently serves as president of South Coast Artists and she is a Signature Member of the National Association of Women Artists (NAWA) and serves on the organization’s Massachusetts Chapter board. Her growing and impressive resume includes her positions as a former museum director and a former president of both the New Jersey Association of Museums and the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums.

She was our guest on In-Focus Podcast Episode: 89 and since then has moved into her new and larger studio at the Hatch Street Artist Studios. Heather attended Excelsior College in New York  and received her BA in Fine Arts, Cum Laude, with the triple majors of Drawing, Painting, and Business Administration

Heather Stivison received her MFA in Painting from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Her master’s thesis was recognized as a Thesis of Distinction, which means she received a recommendation for such a designation because her GPA was at least a 3.5 and, she had “at least one article published or accepted for publication in a refereed journal associated with the field of study as a result of the research for the thesis or in the fields for the Master of Fine Arts…”

Another requirement was that she had to have her work accepted in a juried exhibition on the national or international level! Heather is currently represented at Pleiades Gallery in New York City and continues to pursue extensive additional studies in painting, drawing, book illustration, and textile design at the Parsons School of
Design, Rhode Island School of Design, and Montclair State University.

It’s only February 2023 and in less than sixty days, she has already been accepted and has exhibited in the following shows!

  • Depth Perception – National Association of Women Artists’ juried exhibition at the Wellfleet Preservation Hall, in Massachusetts.
  • Synergy, Part Two – An art/science collaboration with Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) and (MIT) Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers a the Falmouth Art Center, in Massachusetts.
  • Black and White – A juried exhibition and received a “Work of Merit” recognition at the Bristol Art Museum, Bristol, Rhode Island.
  • 32nd Annual Fakes and Forgeries – Judges Award at the Spring Bull Gallery in Newport, Rhode Island.
  • Winter Solstice – Selected gallery group show at the Pleiades Gallery in New York City.

South Coast Art Critic, Don Wilkinson, writing in The Standard-Times said,  “Much of her imagery, although clearly rooted in reality, flirts with the abstract. It is that nexus in between the two poles where she is most comfortable as an artist. In this space of visual disruption, she opens herself up to the possibility of different narratives than simple observation might deliver.”

She describes her evolving work to have, “…developed a particular interest in skies, water, and trees. I see the earth as a living thing, with the ocean as its beating heart, the trees as the lungs, and the sky its breath.”

Heather continues to examine and explore, “How can we capture the breadth of the earth in paint?”  Living in a seacoast town, she frequently looks out “at the ever-changing, immense, and powerful ocean. It reminds her of her “own physical insignificance.”

She invites, “the eye to travel around and through the paint, to encourage contemplation and provoke inner questions.” The Pleiades Gallery says it “spotlights artistic movements and artists who are notable for creating work that crosses genres and borders, generational contexts and artistic disciplines, reflecting a broad range of sensibilities from realistic to abstract.” Heather fits right in!

Heather Stivison

South Dartmouth, Massachusetts

This In-Focus podcast episode is made possible with the support of Heavenly Spirits, who invites you to celebrate the art of life and creative communities everywhere.

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