You can’t help but be an artist or a curator of some kind if you work at elsie green. So we all have a special place in our hearts and our homes for the unique pieces of art that we find in our travels.
Each month, we'll be featuring a monthly curator whose selected art edit will be on exhibit at The Annex. Our featured curator for the month of April is Laurie, founder and creative director of Elsie Green. Read along for her perspective on art as well as a bit of advice for those who are just beginning their collections.
Do you have a favorite art medium? If so, what is it?
While I love oil paintings for the Elsie Green collection because they're so classically French, I favor photography for my personal collection. I love a beautiful candid portrait, or a close up still life with a bit of mystery to it.
What was the first piece of art you invested in?
My house has always had a transient collection of art moving through it as things catch my eye in my travels. It's just been recently that I have begun slowly building a permanent collection for myself, and I seem to have a propensity for portraits. On a trip to Europe a few years ago I bought the first piece in my portrait series : a beautiful abstract in oil I found in a flea market LeMans.
What is your most cherished piece from your personal collection?
I received a signed photograph of Alcatraz as a gift from the San Francisco photographer Michal Venera several years ago. The image is so saturated and mysterious. It exemplifies everything I love about photography.
Do you have a favorite artist?
Like all good art history students, I love the impressionists. But the artist who makes my heart go pitter pat each time I see her work is Imogen Cunningham. I especially love her portrait of Martha Graham from the 1930s.
The most memorable museum or exhibit you've experienced?
When Pier 24 in San Francisco opened as a photography gallery in 2010 I went to their first exhibit. In the show was a collection of photographs taken as part of the Farm Security Administration's photography program during the depression. The photographs were striking on their own, but the curation of the exhibit was incredible. The framing of the photos, the wall colors in the galleries and especially the discipline the curators used to highlight individual works was as much a part of the experience as the art. It was thrilling.
Any advice for someone who is just starting their art collection?
Treat art like you treat jewelry. Don't worry about matching the sofa, don't worry about what other people will think. Just invest in things you love and enjoy them.
How did you go about curating your exhibit?
While I love photography and portraits, for this exhibit I wanted to highlight what I consider to be quintessentially French pieces of art: Parisian landmarks, subtle nods to the French flag, smoldering cigarettes in simple still lifes. This exhibit captures that je ne sais quoi that makes French art so charming.
Laurie's curated edit of vintage art is on exhibit now through the end of April at The Annex. Shop Laurie's edit online.
Visit us at the shops to see the Elsie Green Art Galerie in person.