About the Artist

Nancy Berninger

Contemporary artist Nancy Berninger resides in Cincinnati. Fields and flowers surround her cottage studio, where she works big and fast, moving freely over large-scale canvases with confident strokes. When she paints she abandons herself in the work, swirling generous amounts of color onto her glass palette and her canvas as music plays and inspires, wiping brushes on her shirt, tracking spots of paint across the floor.

Her references are emotional attachments to places and activities she’s experienced or observed. Her process sometimes begins with a photo or plein air pastel; but it’s not until she starts laying paint on the canvas that the real direction takes hold. The act of painting is as important to her as the finished work.

As a result her paintings draw the eye throughout the canvas until you can feel her brush. “I want my work to emote a feeling, an appreciation or a longing,” she says. Her paintings convey both spontaneity and organized energy.

On one wall of her studio she invites visitors to write whatever they like. One of her favorite inscriptions, famed to be a quote from Picasso, reads: “What does it take to be an artist; thick skin, aptitude, and the spirit of a child.” She enjoys that spirit, and says she paints because it’s something she can do without having to follow anyone’s rules…but her own.

Throughout the year Berninger fuels her creative spirit through journeys she shares with her family, including with her husband, Paul, and their three grown children. The music that most inspires her is The National, fronted by their son Matt. In 2013, the film Mistaken for Strangers, directed by their son Tom while on the road with The National, opened the Tribeca Film Festival. Her daughter Rachel shares her spirit for adventure, exploring the great Northwest with her husband and children.

Education
Bachelors Degree, Elementary Education | Mt. St. Joseph

Training and Influences
Steve Perucca | Studied
Sandy Maudlin | Studied
Mary Helen Wallace | Studied
Kay Dyer | Studied
Frank Webb | Workshops
Steve Blackburn | Workshops
Joseph Fettingis | Workshops
Hans Hoffman | Influences
Joan Mitchell | Influences
Chaim Soutine | Influences
Dan McCaw | Influences
Mark Fox | Influences

Recent Exhibitions and Juried Shows
2012
48th Annual Crosby Festival of Arts | Toledo, OH

2011
St. James Court Art Show | Louisville, KY

2010
Penrod Arts Fair | Indianapolis, IN
Fourth Street Festival | Bloomington, IN
Naples National Art Festival | Naples, FL

2009
East Hampton Art Festival | Montauk, NY
Naples National Art Festival | Naples, FL
St. James Court Art Show | Louisville, KY

2008
Estero Fine Art Show | Fort Meyers, FL
Penrod Arts Fair | Indianapolis, IN
Exor Gallery Opening | Boca Raton, FL

2007
Wells Street Festival | Chicago, IL
Peoria Art Guild Show | Peoria, IL
Fitton Center Solo Lobby Gallery “Finding” | Hamilton, OH
Closson’s Art Gallery “From the Heart” | Cincinnati, OH

 

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