Already well known for her extreme close-up paintings of flowers, Ms. Yap has in these latest works rushed headlong into a new perspective and a new medium that is bound to give her art even wider public attention and acclaim.
Applying oil paints to canvas with a palette knife rather than a brush allows her to convey a dynamic sense of movement, heightened by vivid colors and bold textures, while the images she paints in this series are instantly recognizable and appealing to anyone with a fondness for the Everglades.
Indeed, two of the works on display – Everglades Cloudscape #5 and Everglades Meditations #18 – came from the collection of Dan Kimball, superintendent of Everglades National Park, and his wife.
In an explanatory text accompanying the exhibit, Ms. Yap says Everglades: Painted Tapestries consists of three stages: Everglades Cloudscapes, Tapestries in Green (woodland and marsh images), and Everglades Meditations (atmospheric views of the park at various times of day, especially sunrise and sunset).
Blending East and West
Mai Yap is a “pen name” – an abbreviation of her full name, Maida Yap Jiménez. She was born in the Republic of Panama of Chinese parents. In her art, she blends East and West on canvas.
“Within the walls of her parent’s home, she was immersed in the beauty, balance and perfection of millennial traditions passed on from one generation to another,” her biography states. “Once outside these walls, her senses were overcome by the amazing colors, sounds and energy of the Tropics. Panama provided a bustling backdrop of exciting people, places, and music. Most importantly, its natural surroundings provided the perfect artistic inspiration “
Ms. Yap earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and graphic design from the University of Georgia. She teaches at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Coral Gables.
Everglades: Painted Tapestries will be on display through March and April. artSight Gallery is at 1524 Ponce de Leon Blvd. in Coral Gables. Regular gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. during the Gables’ First Friday gallery walk.
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