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Grey Forest ArtistsGrey Forest Open Studios is a free annual event open to the public to view or purchase original hand made art work. The art show takes place in October each year. You can visit several artist’s homesand see their artwork featuring paintings in oils, acrylics and water colors,ceramics, sculptures in stone and metal, textiles, jewelry, antique dolls, vintage aprons, mosaics, mixed media collage & wall art, fused/slumped glass objects, note cards & totes, chalk boards, repurposed painted furniture and more. Read about some of the artists. For more information, visit www.greyforestopenstudios.comNatalie Tita BowenNatalie Tita Bowman a long time Grey Forest Artist who was born in Chihuahua, Mexico and grew up in El Paso, Texas.Bowman holds an Associated Degree in Graphic Arts from San Antonio College and a BFA from UTSA in sculpture graduating with honors, Magna Cum Laude. Natalie is the recipient of several regional and national awards and scholarships. Her sculptures have been exhibited in museums, juried and invitational shows and alternative art spaces.Natalie Tita Bowman’s Collage/photo-drawings have appeared in Catherine Bowman’s book of poetry Rock Farm (Gibbs-Smith 1996) and on the cover of five issues of Crazyhorse the literary magazine published by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock from 1998 to 2001: a visual kaleidoscope blending religion, nature and the sciences. Ralph Burns editor of Crazyhorse describes Bowman’s work as a “quirky mixture of humor with a touch of the macabre.”Bowman has participated in the Grey Forest Open Studios Show & Sale for the past 18 years andDebbie Wright SwisherDebbie Wright Swisher is a long time Grey Forest artist who was born and grew up in Laredo, Texas. Swisher holds a Commercial Art Degree from Texas State University. Her work has been exhibited in several galleries in Austin and San Antonio, Texas.Debbie’s passion is the serenity derived from the beauty in nature, animals, people and architecture.“I love looking at art. It really gets the creative juices flowing fro me.” Debbie further explains her inspiration comes from God’s creations. “I believe we were created to be creative.” She is captivated by texture and imagery that speaks to her andDonald DarstDonald Darst moved to Grey Forest in 1995 with his wife Linda Painter Darst a functional ceramicist and award winning rug hooker.An ancestor, Jacob Darst, made a similar journey to Texas and fought at the Alamo.Darst finds inspiration in the light and shadows of the subjects he paints. “I try to capture the feeling I had at that moment. This feeling guides my painting often impressionistic with darker values and a sense of peace.” Don is particularly inspired by the work of George Innes and the Hudson River School.Don enjoys doing painting demos at various art shows and conducts art workshops for the Hill Country Council of Arts. He also teaches art lessons in his studio, being called a “giving instructor.”Darst served in the United States Air Force as a Russian Language Interpreter78has created several art Installations displayed in her cottage, “The Hospital Room” for one. Her work features objects made of glass shards, dolls, bird nests, sticks, twine, plaster, beeswax, paper, glass vials, bones, dried blossoms and herbs.Natalie’s passion with deep devotion is the love she has for her three children, Catherine, Greg and Grant, six grandkids, & extended family. And for the many friends she is blessed to have.My inspiration, Bowman, explains comes from my maternal grandmother Maria de Acebo Lelevier a great Victorian lady, who taught me how to paint, sew, garden and celebrated the days end with a tea party. My mother Natalia Lelevier Slessinger a beautiful dynamic woman gave me complete freedom to unleash my creativity and instilled a sense of drama into my life that remains to this day.My work is heavily influenced by the symbols & rituals of Catholicism and family stories, by childhood memories of living in La Fundicion, Chihuahua, a silver and copper mine where my father was a metallurgical engineer and grandfathershouts, “Paint me!”Swisher’s paintings, drawings, and note cardsare rendered in charcoal, pencil, acrylic and oils. “I let the imagery determine the medium I select to create each piece.”Not only a wife, mother and artist, Debbie Wright Swisher has also dedicated many hours to community service by volunteering at the Children’s Shelter, Boy Scouts of America and Oak Hills Church for many years.and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Behavioral Science and a Masters in Adult Learning with extensive doctoral studies. His memberships include: Oil Painters of America, Boerne Professional Artists & Hill Country Council for the Arts.Don’s art work is exhibited at the Carriage House Gallery, Boerne, TX, Fredericksburg Art Gallery, and Old Milltown Depot/Gallery in Star Lake, Wisconsin.Donald Darst is a recipient of several national and regional awards and has dedicated many hours of Community Service: Mayor of Grey Forest, Madla Park board member, Grey Forest Open Studios Chairman and committees. Visit: www.donalddarst. com and on Facebook at Donald Darst ArtDon enjoys doing painting demos at various art shows and conducts art workshops for the Hill Country Council of Arts. He also teaches art lessons in his studio, being called a “giving instructor.”was a chemist, very vivid images are of the yearly parade held by the Tarahumara Indians, witch doctor et al.Bowman’s hobbies include watching movies, cooking, bird watching, gardening, reading and sewing and adds “that somehow all end up in my art work in some form.Community Services: Madla Park restoration project of tile work. Grey Forest Open Studios volunteer work, Founder of local Book Club.www.GreatNWGuide.com2017-2018Artists

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