March 2, 2021


art requires creative

Painter responds to mother’s Alzheimer’s condition with artwork

3 min read

Toward the end of the everyday living of her mother, who was struggling from Alzheimer’s disorder, Susanne Dotson began portray scenes of bouquets, especially the roses her mom loved.

The Columbus artist, who started the homage to her mother at the beginning of 2020, explained the acrylic paintings “just started out pouring out of me.” On Dec. 20, at the age of 96, Harriet Keller Wise — also a painter — died in her house in LaGrange, Ohio, in the northeastern section of the condition.

Dotson’s vibrant floral sequence is presented in the Small North’s Sarah Gormley Gallery. The show, which also can be seen on the gallery web-site, is titled “Can You Convey to Me Who I Am,” just one of the inquiries Dotson’s mom would question in her final several years.  

The paintings are vivid with contrasting summertime shades. “Morning Roses” provides mild-yellow blooms against a deep-aqua qualifications. “He Normally Gave Her Red” showcases the pink roses that Dotson’s father often bought for his spouse.

"Mourning Roses" by Susanne Dotson

The significant “Weeping Roses,” a single of the paintings that Harriet Keller Wise saw before she died, masses pale-pink roses on an aqua background. As in quite a few of these paintings, the bouquets drip what appears like tears from their petals or stems.

“My mom loved roses, and she loved pink. She often dressed me in pink and,” Dotson said, laughing, “I despise pink … She imagined this painting was beautiful.”

As a young university scholar, Dotson, now 76, examined art at the College of Akron, then went on to a profession in small business as an inside designer and manufacturing representative. But all through these yrs, she produced time to paint. Central Ohioans might know her for her “farm and fashion” performs, specially whimsical portraits of chickens, some carrying costume jewellery.

Susanne Dotson

In 2017, Dotson marketed her small business and started to show up at graduate university in fantastic art at the Columbus University of Art & Structure, earning her master’s diploma in 2019.

“I was the oldest person there. Even the janitors ended up youthful,” she claimed.

Because then, she’s been painting total time.

Gallery proprietor Sarah Gormley frequented Dotson’s studio where she discovered Dotson’s floral tributes to her mother. “My rule for my gallery is that I have to like the works in purchase to have them in a demonstrate,” she claimed. Dotson’s performs passed her check.

The paintings in “Can You Tell Me Who I Am” are not sorrowful as a single may hope specified the catalyst of Alzheimer’s alternatively, they are daring and largely joyful. In some of the paintings, these as “Scrambled Ideas,” Dotson has subtly integrated questions her mom would inquire: “What is your identify?” “How prolonged have you lived here?”

"The Last Flamingo" by Susanne Dotson

“The Last Flamingo” recalls two dozen of her mother’s mates who socialized alongside one another as youthful girls in LaGrange and named themselves “The Flamingos.” Dotson explained her mother, most probably, was the past a person.

The artist is not positive if she will proceed this series, although she said, “I however have two (paintings) on easels.”

What she does know is that the works were designed from adore.

“I’m the two grieving and celebrating my mom,” she reported.

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At a glance

“Can You Notify Me Who I Am,” paintings by Susanne Dotson, proceeds through Jan. 31 at the Sarah Gormley Gallery, 988 N. High St. Hrs: noon to 5 p.m. Thursdays by means of Saturdays. Check out © All rights reserved. | Newsphere by AF themes.