Ann Ekstrom

Ann Ekstrom was born in Fort Worth in 1953. Her talented mother, Beth Lea Clardy, instilled a devotion to art at an early age. Ekstrom earned a B.FA. from Texas Christian University. She received additional art training at the University of Texas at Austin and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. Ekstrom's passion for art is seen in a deep body of work that ranges from printmaking to watercolor painting to highly detailed, large-scale oils. Her 72-foot painting, Hints of a Life, is permanently installed at Tarrant County College, Southeast Campus. Paintings by her are included in corporate and private collections across North Texas. Ekstrom is a popular Fort Worth lecturer and has been featured in the Kimbell Art Museum's The Artist's Eye. In addition to studio work, Ekstrom has served as a painting instructor for Texas Christian University's Extended Education program and teaches in her studio near the TCU campus. She has been chosen by the office of Fort Worth Public Art to design a project at North Z. Boaz Park for the Bomber Heights neighborhood. Ekstrom is a long-time promoter of Art in the Metroplex, and a former steering committee member of EASL (Emergency Artists' Support League). She has served on the Exhibition Advisory Panel of the Fort Worth Community Arts Center. Artspace 111 in Fort Worth represents her. She recently had a show at the Grace Museum in Abilene and has an upcoming show at the Martin Museum of Art on the Baylor campus in Waco.

"I hope that the images that resonate for me will also resonate with the viewer and provoke interest or memory" - Ann Ekstrom

I have been making still life paintings of small elderly buttons and pins and bits of ephemera for a long time. My concerns as a painter continue to be quite formal - color, light, design, surface, materials. I think of my multi object compositions as conversations and my single-subject, shaped canvases as meditations. As I worked on the 29 new tondos for this exhibition, I meditated on a 25-year-old conversation with my mother's younger sister. "You know where you get this, don't you?" my Aunt Nancy Lea Vance said to me when she saw my first paintings using art deco buttons and plastic items. I thought that I did. that they came out of my interests in 20th century design, dime store kitsch, tromp l'oeil painting and my large collection of Bakelite, postcards and random bits of the past. "No", she said, "When you were a baby, my mother would pour her basket of old buttons out on the floor for you to play with. This looks exactly like that." I was stunned; there was no doubt that I had laboriously replicated that scene in the painting right in front of us. When I thought about it, this Freudian (and amusing) revelation about my grandmother and my brain made perfect sense. Ever since I discovered allies and flea markets, I have surrounded myself with old things that were just like hers. So, when I moved from my academic training as a figurative artist to a more personal expression, I found ways to respond to images from my grandmothers' and great aunts' homes and gardens. Certainly, I am more conscious now of the source of my imagery. In my current work, I have chosen to go back to the simple theme of the button basket as a trove of memory in Hazzie Lea’s Time Capsule; a series of 25 round or button-shaped paintings of single objects.

My mother, Beth Lea Clardy, grew up in that home where I discovered the buttons, but she took something completely different from it. Unlike me, she thoroughly embraced modernity. She worked as an artist for almost 70 years, put herself through TCU as a Billy Rose showgirl at Casa Manana, taught art in the F0I1 Worth public schools and worked as a drafter at the Consolidated Vultee bomber plant during the Second World War. She discovered the painterly monotype print process in the last decade of her life and it proved to be a wonderful and rewarding medium for her. She created many traditional figurative and still life works during her life, but she had the most fun with her "Nature Embossings" made from live plants. A group of botanical prints that remained in our studio after Mother's passing seemed a filling addition to my exhibition, which features many floral motifs. So here we are together again in a way she could have never   foreseen; her modernity as part of my nostalgia.

ANN EKSTROM, American (b. 1953)

EDUCATION:

The School of the Fort Worth Art Center Museum

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Texas Christian University, BFA, 1980

The University of Texas at Austin

SELECTED EXHIBITIONS:

2013

Fort Worth Community Art Center Tenth Annual Invitational Exhibition

Suitable Subjects Grace Museum, Abilene TX Group Exhibition

"Like" Group exhibition Artspace 111 Fort Worth, TX

Velveasl invitational auction benefitting EASL

Selection Committee Fort Worth Public Art Handley Historic District

Monoprint Workshop for Fort Worth Women's Club

Juror for Main Street Arts Festival prizes for 2013 fair

Visiting Artist for Baylor University Art Department Spring Semester

Ongoing studio classes at 3200 Greene Ave.

2012

Work exhibited at Dallas Art Fair by Artspace 111 Gallery

Ongoing exhibition of work at Artspace 111

Juror for Main Street Arts Festival- artist selection for 2013 festival

2 Day workshop for Sid Richardson Museum Education Dept.

1 day monoprint workshop for Fort Worth ISD Art teachers in my studio

2011

Solo Exhibitions Martin Museum of Art, Baylor University, Waco, TX

Conversations, Situations and Meditations Fort Worth Community Art Center Satellite Gallery

Work exhibited at Dallas Art Fair by Artspace 111 Gallery

Artspace FWADA Spring Gallery Night and Fall Gallery Night

Ongoing exhibition of work at Artspace 111

Juror for Main Street Arts Festival -prizes

Juror for Fort Worth Stock Show Art Contest

Juror for Abilene ISD Young Masters Competition

2010

"Preservation is the Art of the City" group exhibition by Historic Fort Worth, inc.

Bill and Gail Landreth Award in honor of Gene Owens

Fort Worth Public Art project at Z. Boaz Park for "Bomber Heights" neighborhood

Work exhibited at Dallas Art Fair by Artspace 111 Gallery

Artspace 111 Fort Worth FWADA Spring Gallery Night

Ongoing exhibition of work at Artspace 111

2010

"Full Bloom: The paintings of Ann Ekstrom with prints by her mother Beth Lea Clardy" The Grace Museum, Abilene, TX

Work exhibited in Dallas Art Fair by Artspace 111

Artspace 111 Fort Worth FWADA Spring Gallery Night

Ongoing exhibition of work at Artspace 111

Fort Worth Public Art project at Z. Boaz Park for "Bomber Heights" neighborhood

Preservation is the Art of the City Award in honor of Gene Owens for "TCU-Continuity and Change" Fort Worth Community Art Center

2009

Featured Artist for "Preservation is the Art of the City" group exhibition by Historic Fort Worth, Inc. Fort Worth Community Art Center

Work exhibited at Dallas Art Fair by Artspace111

Art in the Metroplex Juror: David Pagel "Dresden"

Curated exhibition Landers Machine Shop Gallery Spring Arts Goggle, Juror Main Street Arts Festival Fort Worth

"Selections" Artspace111 Gallery Artists FWADA Spring Gallery Night, Fort Worth Community Art Center

Gallery talk at Baylor University, Waco

2008

""WORTHwhile" Artspace 111 group exhibition

Friends of EASL Invitational co-curator and exhibitor

Art in the Metroplex Claud M. Vance Memorial Prize Juror: Eleanor Hartney

"Across a Crowded Room" Ann Ekstrom and Nancy Lamb Two Person Exhibition, Curated by Scott Barker Fort Worth Community Art Center

Artspace 111 Fall Gallery Night group exhibition

Group Show Fourth Street Gallery Lampasas, TX

Co-chair EASL" Art Heist" fundraiser Artspace 111

Selected for Project Fort Worth Public Art

Juror 2009 Main Street Arts Festival

2007

Fort Worth Public Art Design Charrette South Rosedale

Cherry Spring Festival "Texas Five" works exhibited

David Dike Gallery Shows

Artists against Aids Fort Worth Community Art Center

Exchange Nine Group Exhibition Spring Gallery night Fort Worth Community Art Center

Preservation is the Art of the City Historic Fort Worth, Inc. FWCAC

"Texas Five" Museum for East Texas Culture Palestine, TX

2006

Various "Texas Five" shows at David Dike Gallery, Dallas

9" x 12" group exhibition Fort Worth Community Art Center

2005

"MONOPRINT" The Gallery Fort Worth, Texas

"Animals and? Marigold Gallery Santa Fe, New Mexico

"EAP COMMITIEE" group exhibition Fort Worth Community Art Center

"PRESERVATION IS THE ART OF THE CIlY' invitational exhibition

George Grammer prize Fort Worth Public Library Gallery

2004

"REALIlY BITES" group exhibition Artspacell1 Fort Worth, Texas

"THE MENTOR & HIS PROTEGE'S" group exhibition Carillon Gallery, Tarrant County College

SMALL WORKS" group exhibition The Gallery Fort Worth, Texas

'THE FLOWER IN ART' group exhibition Gallery206 Granbury, Texas

2003

"EXCHANGE NINE" Group Exhibition Fort Worth Public Library Gallery

"25" Group exhibition Carol Henderson Gallery Fort Worth, Texas

2002

Chrysanthemum Project Fort Worth Botanic Garden

Lecture Series for the Docents of the Sid Richardson Museum

2001

"OUT OF THE DUSlY DRAWER" one person exhibition, Cedar Valley College, Lancaster, Texas

"CONTEMPORARY REALISM" group exhibition, Carol Henderson Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

"GROUP SHOW" So Hyun Gallery, NY, NY

Group Exhibition, Upstate Art Gallery, Phonecia, NY

Teacher for ''Young Artist Workshop Series" Kimbell Museum of Art

2000

"EXCHANGE NINE" group exhibition, Wichita Falls Museum and Art Center

"Nuts and Bolts and Magic" Gallery talk in" The Artist's Eye" lecture series, Kimbell Art Museum Fort Worth, Texas

1999

"ART IN THE METROPLEX", Juror: Clint Wilhour

Monoprint show at SE campus

1998

"EXCHANGE NINE" group exhibition, Contemporary Art Center of Fort Worth

"MONOPRINTS-BETH LEA CLARDY & ANN EKSTROM,” Gainsco Building Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

"CURRENTS IN CONTEMPORARY ART", Fort Worth International Center

Permanent Installation of "Hints of a Life: Remembering my Father"

Tarrant County Junior College - Southeast Campus Library, Arlington, Texas

Staff Choice for "Best Artist" in the 1998 "Best of the West-o-Plex" issue of The Fort Worth Weekly

1997

"THE UNBROKEN LINE- 100 YEARS OF FELLOWSHIP" juried exhibition

The Museum of American Art of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine

of the Fine Arts Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

1996

"HINTS OF A LIFE- REMEMBERING MY FATHER, " Site Specific installation, Solo Exhibition, Carillon Gallery, Tarrant County Junior College-South Campus, Fort Worth, Texas

"ART IN THE METROPLEX," Juror: Luis Jimenez, Brown-Lupton Gallery, Texas Christian University

"DEFINING TERRITORY, " Three person exhibition, Haggar Gallery University of Dallas, Irving, Texas

"THREE TEXAS REALISTS", Three Person Exhibition, Breckenridge Fine Arts Center, Breckenridge, Texas

"TEN PLUS ONE", Gallery 414, Fort Worth, Texas

Group Exhibitions, Carol Henderson/Artenergies Galleries

"LIMITED ENGAGEMENT AND AVAILABILITY", Participant, Performance

Work by Ed Blackburn performed at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth; Ed Blackburn, Linda Blackburn, Jim Malone, Ann Ekstrom, Brian Fridge

1995

"ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL-ART AND THE ANIMAL KINGDOM" Craighead-Green Gallery, Dallas, Texas

"ANN EKSTROM -RECENT WORK", Solo Exhibition, Carol Henderson Gallery Fort Worth, Texas

"TEN TEXAS PRINTMAKERS", curated by Wade Wilson; University of Maryland- Eastern Shores, Princess Anne, Maryland;

Valmora Ranch Gallery, Valmora, New Mexico

"RELATIVE TALENT" , Beth Lea Clardy, Robert Ekstrom, Denise Rabalais Ekstrom, Gwen Clardy Sylvester, Ann Clardy Ekstrom

North Texas Health Science Center Atrium Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

1994

"PROCESS 2llit TRANSITION - WORKS BY VERA BARNETT AND ANN EKSTROM", Texas Wesleyan University, Fort Worth, Texas

BRECKENRIDGE FINE ARTS CENTER NATIONAL JURIED COMPETITION Juror: Joe Bohler, First Place Award, Breckenridge, Texas

Group Exhibitions at Artenergies Gallery

Completed Mural at 8.0 Restaurant, Sundance Square, Fort Worth, Texas

1993

TEMPLETON ART CENTER 15TH ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP COMPETITION

Juror: Mark Thistlethwaite, First Place Award

"FOR MEMBERS ONLY", Arlington Museum of Art, Juror: Annegrith Nill,

"Top Banana Award", Arlington, Texas

"THIRD ANNUAL COMPETITION" CAAA Metroplex Chapter, Juror Ed Blackburn, First Place Award for Watercolor, Best of Show Award

"AN EXHIBITION OF FORT WORTH ARTIST'S & COMPANY" Tarrant County Junior College Northwest Campus, Fort Worth, Texas

Group exhibitions at Artenergies Gallery

1992

"WATERCOLORS AND PASTELS", three person exhibition, Templeton Art Center, Fort Worth, Texas

"URBAN FLOCK", The Blue Door Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

TEMPLETON ART CENTER FACULTY SHOW

"SECOND ANNUAL MEMBERS JURIED EXHIBITION", Southwest Society of Watercolor Artists, Gallery One, Fort Worth, Texas

"CHRISTMAS AT ARTENERGIES" Artenergies Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

1991

TEMPLETON ART CENTER FACULTY SHOW

1989

"A ONE PERSON EXHIBITION OF PAINTINGS BY ANN EKSTROM” Tarrant County Junior College Northwest Campus, Fort Worth, Texas

"WOMEN OF WORTH", Tarrant County Arts Alliance

1988

"FIRST ANNUAL TEN COUNTY ART EXHIBITION", Juror: Eugene Binder Best of Show Award, TOC NW Campus

1986

"FAVORITE PLACES, FAVORITE THINGS", Three Person Show Art Corner Gallery, Fort Worth, Texas

"ART IN THE METROPLEX", Moudy Gallery, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX

POSITIONS HELD:

Steering Committee Member of EASL (The Emergency Artist's Support League)

Faculty, Extended Education, TCU

Fort Worth Community Art Center Exhibition Advisory Panel

Plastic Nature, Naturally by Anthony Mariani in Fort Worth Weekly

Trinkets leave the drawer, fill a canvas by Jessica Foreman in Baylor Lariat

Exhibit showcases two generations of artistic Fort Worth women by Gaile Robinson in DFW.com