Barbara was born and lived most of her life in Michigan but for many years she had known that her heart was in Arizona. Circumstances permitted Barbara and her husband to move there in 2000. In Michigan, besides having her work in several galleries, she participated in many art fairs and her artwork was in many juried exhibits including one at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
“As far back as I can remember, I have understood composition and the principles of art. Meeting artist/teacher, Ruth Janes, was a major turning point in my life. While I had always drawn and painted, she was instrumental in helping me focus and develop this desire through technical means. However, her greatest gift to me was opening my eyes to the spiritual in art, the deeper meaning.”
This is when Barbara also started working abstractly. At the time she made extensive color charts of all her acrylic colors mixed with each other in three steps. She also mixed them with their complements to create grays and blacks which has resulted in her never using black for a dark as she can get much more lively darks using complements.
One of Barbara’s colleagues says of her art “it touches on the powerful, universal energy that connects man to spirit”. Her work is spiritual and centering, told with simplicity, expressing in color and composition what cannot be spoken with words. It embodies the music, harmony, and mystery of the Universe, the underlying energy of our world, the music of being within all things, creating a peaceful, harmonious space wherein one can experience silence, still-point, and oneness with all. Some works are non-objective while others are figurative or abstracted stone shapes.
Rocks and stones have always intrigued Barbara and often appear in her art. As a child she would water the stones in her mom’s rock garden to bring out their beautiful colors. Her relatives supplied her with all the paper and pencils she and her sister needed. Her parents supplied them with crayons and coloring books. She grew up thinking everyone made art. It was her eighth grade teacher who advised her mother that she had a talent to be developed when she saw a chalk drawing Barbara did as an assignment.
Her hobbies are gardening and bird watching. She has been on tours to Trinidad, Tobago, Belize, Guatemala, Panama, Mexico, Ecuador, Galapagos Island, and Tanzania in pursuit of her bird watching hobby. She also volunteers at Montezuma Well National Monument to enjoy the local birds, visitors, and the outdoors. Grand Canyon has been her favorite park since seeing pictures of it in Life magazine as a child. An 8-day rafting trip down the Colorado River through Grand Canyon is one of the highlights of her life.