Gallery Director, Tiffany Hay, sent the following artist statement to me this morning from our very talented Helen Shulman. Discovering the many "hidden" layers of an artist's past is one of the most enjoyable part of the job for me. Often the more you find out about an artist (their history, background, and experiences), the more you understand and appreciate their work. Enjoy this nice read into the world of Helen Shulman's painting...also a video of Helen can be found on her artist page on our site by clicking here.
I was about 8 years old, sitting with an art teacher on an Ohio farm road. We were drawing a barn. Near the barn was a huge pine tree. The teacher suggested it would look good behind the barn. "But it's over there," I said. "It's your painting; you can put the tree wherever you want it," she responded.
That was it. I was stunned. I was in love. I was free. If I painted, I could put the tree wherever I wanted! My path was determined.
There were, however, many side journeys. In order to show my scientist father that girls could succeed in an area he respected, I earned a Master's in Mathematics. I was on my way to a PhD until I realized I wasn't sure where I needed to be.
After leaving graduate school in LA, I moved to NYC and took a job teaching math to bright kids with emotional disabilities. Eventually, this lead to a Master's in Social Work. I had a series of jobs in mental health and finally started my own private psychotherapy practice which was extremely satisfying and which has influenced the way I paint.
Art was never far away. My husband and I looked at art. We bought art. We had friends who were artists. But making art was something for others. Making "crafts" was okay for me, but not making "art." I wove and worked in clay, but I didn't pick up a paintbrush until I finally began to wonder what I was waiting for. As silly as it sounds now, entering an art supply store took some courage as did signing up for classes and eventually entering the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston where I studied part time for four years.
Now I'm living a dream. I spend most of the time working in one of my two studios. I have shown up and down the east coast. My work is in corporate and private collections in the US and Europe. My husband, Ephraim Shulman, who is a great support to me, and I have been happily married for 40 years. We split our time between Quechee, VT and Naples, FL. --Helen Shulman
Thank you Helen for sharing the wonderful details with us! To see more of Helen Shulman's available work at Pryor Fine Art, click here
We look forward to seeing you soon! Summer is an exciting time at the gallery with many new works arriving each week from our fantastic artists.