Katherine Bowling -
American, b. 1955
Trees II, 2000
Lithograph, 27 x 26 inches
Gift of Judy and J.D. Williamson, II (BBA '67, MBa '68)
Bowling is a painter who is also an ambitious printmaker. Her recurring subject is nature and how it reveals itself to the human eye in subtle plays of form, light, and shadow. Her work is inspired by landscape painters of the past, but her compositional devices and techniques are very much akin to the abstractionists of the 20th century. Her pieces almost seem as if they were dreamed, and not taken from her up-state New York home.
Bowling focuses on the bare essentials of a landscape and may manipulate those essentials in a set of variations, as she does in Trees I and II. Usually working with intaglio processes, she turns to lithography in these two prints for the first time. The subject is a single stand of trees that she presents from the same point-of-view but in two different lights. The atmospheric shift of color and shadow dramatically alters the mood of each landscape and the viewer's emotional response to it. Although viewers may have a variety of reactions to the differences between the two, Bowling sees one as “wintry and cool” and the other as “warm and tropical.”