Lee Vanderwalker is all about color, being in the moment, and her celebration of life. Lee is a life-long artist that morphed into web developer, graphic designer and publisher who twenty years ago spent her first holiday in the Caribbean. The watercolor artist, silk painter and photographer has developed an eye for the interpretation and presentation of Caribbean and Island life. As an astute observer, Vanderwalker brings more than impressions of the Tropics to the viewer. Lee's works are consciously designed to make an emotional statement about her love for Belize, cultural diversity, the pristine beauty of the reef and the ethos of Caribbean life.
Lee's view from her Caye Caulker window seems to go on forever. The beach, the sun and the infinite turquoise water deceive you into thinking that there is no beginning and the there is no end. When the sun goes down in the Caribbean, the stars come out and the Milky Way makes us step out of our bodies and reach for the infinite. There, is the doorstep to understanding all things. The shore is the magical place where water meets land and deposits tiny messages of shell and coral. On the shore objects come in to be examined, are pulled back, then reappear to be examined again. Treasures dropped by the child are picked up by the adult they were meant for.
"Being there and being aware, staying in the moment is essential to receiving whatever gifts the universe has to offer. My technique and process involves layers and layers of colors, added to and subtracted from each other to alter the rich and luminous surface of the media. At times I will lay down color upon color seeking unrevealed treasures. Adding and subtracting color, the results are simultaneously compelling and rich."
Like snapshots in a vacation photo album, Vanderwalker’s paintings are moments of experience arrested by intuitive recognition of their universal appeal. Her images of the Caribbean are stunning and bright, flashes of pure color, recalling the freshness of naïve art. Exuberant color presents a primitive naturalness and energy. Each of the images in this exhibition were photographed and printed digitally on a giclee printer. The hand colored photos were printed on Arches 140 lb. watercolor paper and then colored with oil pastel, oil crayon, prismacolor pencil and watercolor pencil, and in some instances gouache was applied.
A native Detroiter and a world traveler, Vanderwalker was a Fine Arts major in college, then studied the serti-technique of silk painting at Stadt Universitat in Bamberg, Germany while maintaining a studio for two years. From 1991-2000 she founded and controlled X-Height Studio, Inc. an electronic service bureau and digital imaging and printing center in Troy, Michigan. Lee retired and moved to Belize nearly five years ago and now resides on Caye Caulker. The pace is as slow as the waves lapping against the shoreline. After receiving her residency in 2001, she opened Caribbean Colors Art Gallery located on Front Street, Caye Caulker, featuring local Belizean artists, or artists living and working in Belize and showcasing her own work. Her website is www.caribbean-colors.com
and like the cobbler’s children, is always under construction. She also owns and maintains www.cybercayecaulker.com,
an online pictorial directory of Caye Caulker.
Caribbean Colors Art Gallery, Box 45 Caye Caulker, Belize Tel: 206-0206
Website: www.caribbean-colors.com www.cybercayecaulker.com