But she's no debutante to the gallery world as a veteran of
The watercolorist/printmaker was featured in solo exhibitions for each medium in 1998 and 2007 respectively, and she's been selected for many juried and group shows. Bardin's art is held in many private collections in
A mystical rendering of the iconic theme, Bardin's pink-violet-purple-brown pigments are shot through with gold-leaf text, in her native French, which she excerpted from Paul Éluard's prologue of La PoÉsie du PassÉ.
The translated passage expresses best her feelings as an artist.
"We are born of one another. We maintain our name, our ambition, our hope ... We are more certain of the limited past than of the boundless future ... All has changed and all will change, but we must always melt the language of reality and that of the imagination, the possible and the hope, see clearly beyond, clearly within ourselves, reflect, express ourselves, act and be happy."
"My house is in the trees," said Bardin of the
"That's a recurrent theme in my work. From there, I have to put in that text. It's in watercolor. I always work on paper or a natural product like wood. The tree of life you can see the tree but it's superimposed."
The calligraphy, free hand, is written several times.
"So, you have different styles of writing," Bardin said. "Each time it's written in a different color, it acquires a depth, a life of its own. It's visually alive."
Another calligraphic work, "B on Makore," is an exploration of varied printmaking techniques on diverse papers and surfaces.
"Makore is an African word, the name of the tree used for veneer," Bardin said. "It has a look of a redwood but a moirÉ sheen to it."
"B on Makore" is a 14-foot long, screen-like work comprises 11 veneer panels mounted in pairs on Japanese paper. Each panel is a singular expression or an amplification of each other when placed together.
"Having been inspired by the Chinese calligraphy exhibition at The Met, I took one character and repeated it again and again and again. Why B, because I'm B."
She retrieved her panels from a dumpster dive.
"Someone was doing a renovation and didn't need that," she said. "I mounted them two by two."
"B on Makore" is a large work and is "
"Martha knew my work, and she knew it wasn't small," Bardin said. "She gave me 35 feet of wall, so it fits."
After a successful
"I always wanted to be a painter," Bardin said. "My sister found a book of my things. I am 8 years old, and I'm just fascinated with color and how you translate light into color."
At 17 and about to enter college, she received parental advice.
"My father said, 'An artist is not a career, and if you ever need to support yourself, be sensible girl.'"
At Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Grenoble, she majored in economics and finance.
"To deal in finance and anything, you have to have the mind that will create the view for people to see the way you want them to see and they have to buy that view," Bardin said. "Many people ask me, how can you be an artist? It takes a good artist to work on
'STARTED PAINTING AGAIN'
She made enough money selling the Banana and former Soviet-block republics to support three children.
When she got hitched to the Texan, their travels here and there did not agree.
"I said, 'You're the star. I will find something else.' And, that's when I started painting again."
Bardin studied painting and printmaking at the
Her latest muse are wild thistles of
"I just thought that is just fabulous," Bardin said. "When they fade, they turn a silver gray, so I started sketching it. I started painting it and from there I drew a triptych, 'Thistle 2, 3 and 4.' It's almost an abstraction of the thistle. I start with something that is exactly what is out there, and it morphs into abstraction."
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