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The Art of Travel: Pastel Paintings from the Estate of Elsie Dinsmore Popkin

The Art of Travel: Pastel Paintings from the Estate of Elsie Dinsmore Popkin

Sep 1st – Oct 17th, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday, September 7th from 6pm - 9pm

Born in Reading, PA and educated at Cornell University, Elsie Dinsmore Popkin lived in Winston Salem, NC for the majority of her career.

Elsie was an incredibly curious and ardent traveler. Armed with her pastel box and knowledge of several languages, she built connections with people and places around the world. Whether it’s a sea of flowers fluttering in the sunlight, or wind rippling the reflection of a boat on water, Elsie Dinsmore Popkin doesn’t try to persuade her audience to travel, but rather, transports them there herself through an impressive ability to convey her own zest for life.

This exhibition showcases works painted during Elsie Dinsmore Popkin’s extensive travels, including breathtaking scenes from Greece, Japan, Chile and Turkey, among other countries.

Read more about the artist here.

“Elsie [Dinsmore Popkin] could talk. Anyone who ever met her knows this. Elsie could talk and paint, but you probably knew that too. But what you may not have known is that she could and did talk and paint in multiple languages and in just about any location whose beauty she felt compelled to capture on paper. With her boxes of pastels, paper, and travel easel, Elsie covered Europe, South America, Asia and the United States. She chatted in English, Spanish, French and even a little Chinese as she regaled passers by with her tales of art, life and humanity.

“The work you see here represents but a small part of her time abroad, but it is a start. Behind each painting here was a conversation and the shared experience of humanity that art effortlessly brings out of people. She was filmed by a news crew while painting the mayor’s garden in Cochabamba, Bolivia (who of course invited her in with full access after she knocked on the door unannounced). She was fed wine and cheese while painting in France where she had stopped roadside to capture flowering mustard fields, and fed dumplings in China as she painted from the center of city parks. And on and on it went, Elsie traveled and captured the beauty she seemed to see everywhere she went. Tearing up at the sight of beauty, no matter how mundane, and sharing that appreciation of beauty and life with all with whom she talked. Elsie was a remarkable person and we miss her dearly, but thankfully she left her vision of beauty here on paper for us all to appreciate. We hope that these travels, and these views, provide some insight into the beauty she experienced and shared with people everywhere she went.”

-Ben Popkin, son of Elsie Dinsmore Popkin


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