My friend Meredith Britt is among the artists taking part in the Second Invitational New Mexico Painters Exhibition at Kennedy Hall on the campus of New Mexico Highlands University. The show will be up beginning Sept. 6 and run through Oct. 16, with the reception to be held from 4-7 p.m. on opening day.
Meredith is one of my favorite people. I thank her for kindly answering my questions and allowing me to feature her in this blog about the show. Her dry sense of humor makes me smile; her work lets me know how important art is to her.
She said about painting: “I’ve always painted. I’ve considered painting my main focus since I was 29 when I went back to school and changed my major to art.
“‘Formally trained’ sounds like I’m housebroken, which I am. I’ve been to obedience school too,” she replied to the question about whether she is self-taught. “Art kind of teaches you, whether you’re in school or not. As long as you’re making art, art is the teacher.”
In addition to painting Meredith does beautifully created collage art in vibrant colors with amazing detail. “I got started with collages just playing around with colored paper and glue stick when we had the Community Art Center by the bridge. Both mediums are so malleable – you really can’t go wrong. The artist always gets to play god.”
She refers to the artistic style of her painting and collages as Britt Realism. I can see that. There is subtle simplicity and power in her work.
Of the five bold-image paintings she submitted for consideration, three were chosen.
“The pieces I picked for the show sort of go together because they are all large-scale still lifes: an ice cream cone, a toaster, and a thermos with two cups and saucers. They all sort of relate to food so there’s another thread. I also entered a painting of a chair and one of the women’s room in the Highlands art building. Those didn’t get in. Maybe the curator was hungry. On another note, I seriously hope my work gives people some joy or helps them remember there’s a bigger picture. Nothing is as it seems.”
I asked Meredith what three things she wanted people to know about her as an artist.
“I want people to know that I believe art is everything; that I hope to inspire others to make art without judgment; and that I no longer think about the fact that I’m the world’s greatest artist.”
Meredith’s work can be seen at el Zócalo Gallery, 1809 Plaza in Las Vegas, an art space she is proud to share with others.
“Eleven of us members own it cooperatively. It’s one of the best things that ever happened to me. It’s a beautiful place and we all get along well. Everyone is invited to come see us – we’re open every day. I’ve been in galleries in Santa Fe and Taos, but I don’t need them now that I have el Zócalo.”
For more information about the Second Invitational New Mexico Painters Exhibition at Kennedy Hall, click here to read an article by Margaret McKinney.
What: Second Invitational New Mexico Painters Exhibition at Kennedy Hall
Where: Kennedy Hall Art Gallery
Dates: Sept. 6 – Oct. 16
Opening Reception: 4-7 p.m., Sept. 6