Artist Uses Beeswax To Create Colorful Minimalist Works

Museum of Art – DeLand Exhibition Janet Seigel Rogers: Retrospective

September 24th, 2018
Artist Uses Beeswax To Create Colorful Minimalist Works

DELAND, FL – SEPTEMBER 24, 2018 – How does South Florida artist Janet Siegel Rogers make the bright hues of her minimalist paintings dance and shapeshift, almost as if colored bees were buzzing on the surface of her canvases? She creates her mostly vivid, sometimes dark color-scapes via an ancient technique known as encaustic painting, in which oil paint is mixed with hot beeswax. The exhibition “Janet Siegel Rogers: Retrospective” is on display August 25th through October 21st at the Downtown Gallery of the Museum of Art – DeLand located at 100 N. Woodland Blvd.

Rogers, who earned her Master of Fine Art degree from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, uses encaustic painting – a technique that dates back to the ancient Greeks – to create huge canvases dominated, at first glance, by two or three large color fields that blend into each other. But viewing her paintings from different angles, by stepping slightly side to side, will reveal textured, rhythmic brushwork and numerous shades of color that seem to flutter with each step.

It’s an effect of the encaustic process, in which the beeswax mixed in oil paint suspends the pigments into various layers and allows light into the surface of the painting, where that light is refracted and thus creates various hues of each color. A number of Rogers’ works, both her encaustic pieces and her equally minimalist, pure oil paintings (with no beeswax), feature a stark, vivid horizontal line dissecting the entire canvas. That striking feature takes on meaning when one learns that Rogers lives near the beach and has noted that “the Everglades, the skies and the waters all influence my work.”

Therefore the titles of some of her paintings, such as “Everglades Night,” “Emerald Waters” and “Early Rising,” suggest their lines could be the horizon between water and sky. The stark lines and color fields of other works, such as “Vibrato” and “Vermilion Light Revisited,” are more abstract and open to vast interpretation.

George Bolge, Chief Executive Officer of the Museum of Art – DeLand, says Rogers’ work “is an abstract, coloristic and textural universe in which we journey between and among an extraordinary variety of optical illusions, perceptually flat areas of color, fine gradations of hot reds or deep, cool blues, energetic brushstrokes that move in and out like friendly fish, irregular blobs and streaks of paint, while overall is a deeply luminous, multi-dimensional atmosphere both ocean-deep and sky-clear.”Rogers’s art “suggests music, long walks through magical gardens or deep, underwater landscapes,”Bolge says. “Rogers, in other words, is not a formal purist, a designer and architect of abstract compositions intended to stand strictly on their own without any reference to other things, places or events. She is a visual poet whose surfaces actually exist to enchant us with intimations and evocations of things we can sense but never quite see. This art beckons us toward it rather than dares us to understand what it is all about.”

Rogers’ works have appeared in one-person exhibitions at the Treasure Room Gallery in New York City, the Pratt Galleries in Brooklyn, the Villanova Gallery in Pennsylvania, and numerous galleries throughout Florida. Her paintings have been shown in group exhibitions in London, Tokyo, Soho in New York, Paris and Cagnes-Sur-Mer in France, and throughout Florida. Her works are included in the collections of the Boca Raton Museum of Art, the NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, the Museum of Art — Deland, and other institutions.

About the Museum of Art – DeLand

The Museum of Art – DeLand is a vital and interactive visual arts museum dedicated to the collection, preservation, display and educational use of the fine arts in Central Florida. Established in 1951, the Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and is comprised of a 23,000 square foot arts facility housing five galleries on two levels located at 600 N. Woodland Blvd. and the Downtown Galleries located at 100 N. Woodland Blvd. Enriching the community through its permanent collection, art exhibitions and educational programs, the Museum is a source of cultural focus and is recognized statewide by its peers for academic excellence and community outreach. The Museum is supported by its Guild, Krewe Nouveau, grants, admissions, generous patrons and donors, and Museum Store adjacent to its galleries in downtown DeLand. To learn more about the Museum, its programming exhibits and opportunities to engage with the Arts visit us at or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

For more information contact:
Donna Tinoco, APR