During the month of February we ask Utah artists about a specific piece of art or artist, living or not, local or global, that has sparked their curiosity or influenced their work. We run their responses throughout the month.
Take a Closer Look, at Emilia Wing and Gustav Klimt
Emilia Wing says she has been drawn to the work of Gustav Klimt, ever since she discovered the artist as a child. “I didn’t know what it was about his work, but I remember not being able to take my eyes off of his paintings,” she says. “Something drew me in to take a closer, longer look. To look at it again and again and explore each beautiful section. I couldn’t get his work out of my head.”
Wing is a Polish-Canadian artist based in Salt Lake City. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a BFA in Studio Art. Following her love of teaching, she went on to pursue a MA in Art Education at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. She has worked as an art teacher in Washington, DC and London, England. Her career also brought her to Russia where she worked in museums based in Moscow and St. Petersburg. With all that travel it’s no surprise that her art is inspired by cities around the world. Her oil paintings of maps and aerial views depict layers of meaningful experimentation of color, texture, and a mix of both organic and geometric forms. She also loves playing with light and reflection using gold, silver, and copper leaf to bring her paintings to life.
“‘Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer,’ also called ‘The Lady/Woman in Gold’ was one of his first works I remember seeing and at first glance this painting looked monochromatic to me, but as I explored it closer and more intently I realized there are actually so many colors and patterns and even gold leaf on it. It was so intriguing. It draws you in and mesmerizes you. That really resonates with me as an artist. I think subconsciously I hope to achieve that same level of interest in my work. I want my viewer to want to see more, to want to explore and examine every section and be intrigued by the variety of color and layers and be bedazzled by the gold leaf, like I was with Klimt’s work.”