Amy Kollar Anderson – Painter


Amy Kollar Anderson was one of the first artists I met as I was starting to submit my photos to art exhibitions.  As Gallery Coordinator at Kettering’s Rosewood Gallery she networked with artists from around the country.  She gave me valuable advice on the quality of my work and on where I should attempt to show it.

I took the above photo more than a year ago when Amy was ARTIST OF THE WEEK on my facebook page “Dayton at Work and Play.”  Shortly after, she left her position at the Rosewood Gallery to become a full time artist.  

I recently read an entry on Amy’s blog posted exactly a year after leaving the Rosewood Gallery.  Part of that blog mentioned that one of her accomplishments during the past year was deciding what she REALLY wanted to accomplish in her life.  One of her three written goals was to “make art that is fun, challenging and fills me with pride.”

That statement reminded me of how much fun I had in my photo shoot with Amy.  Here’s another photo from that session.

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I decided it was time for me to visit the studio in Amy’s home once more.  When I arrived the living room filled with Amy’s art was also filled with supplies for a bathroom that is being remodeled by her and her husband.  Luckily I had taken photos of that room during my first visit.

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Amy’s studio is in one of the upstairs bedrooms.

Amy uses acrylic paints.  She likes the quick drying time and the availability of specialty paints.  Metallic paints, interference paints and fluorescent paints are all part of her repertoire, as well as materials such as glitter and foils.

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I asked Amy if she was painting a lot more now that she was no longer working at Rosewood.

“When I worked at the gallery, I would daydream about being able to spend all day in the studio.  After a few months of being a full-time artist, I found I was really lonely and craved interactions with other creative thinkers, so I set-up one of my easels at Clash in the Oregon District. Around the new year, Clash began the process of reorganizing the store and I moved my set-up to the Dayton Racquet Club, which is located on the 29th floor of the Kettering Tower. That is where I met Darrell, aka Ms. Demure. After an appearance on her show, “Harper’s Bizarroworld,” I started a new DATV show called “Art Hops,” where I interview local creatives and pair them with regionally brewed concoctions.  Later this summer, after working as staff for a dozen years, I will be experiencing “Art on the Commons” from booth #34, where I will have originals, hand-sewn pouches, postcards and various other goodies.”

This photo shows Amy painting at Clash.

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When I first met Amy she was working on an amazing series of paintings inspired by the Alice books of Lewis Carroll.

In her studio I saw the start of a new series of paintings on wooden ovals.

“This new series started with the idea of self exploration. One passion I have passed on to my nephews and niece is the love of elongated pennies. These “squished pennies” are the starting point for this series titled “XO Numia.” The title is a play on the word “Exonumia,” which basically means “out of or from coins.” Each panel is a visual diary documenting little moments in my life. There is a lot more to the series and I will discuss the various components during my artist talk at Wittenberg University on November 18th.”

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Although her normal studio is upstairs, Amy has been doing a lot of painting in the family room downstairs.  She needs the larger room to work on this painting which is 6 feet square.

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“This painting will hang at the Northwest Library Branch that is currently being built on the former site of Fairview High School.  I have incorporated the Fairview mascot and several other FHS references in addition to the Dayton Art Institute African Elephant Mask. Nicknamed “The Beast,” I have spent about 150 hours working on this piece and estimate it is 75% completed.”
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I asked Amy about the small palette she was holding as she painted.  She said it was a cardboard beer coaster.  She likes the small size, the weight and the cost.

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Before leaving, I asked Amy to pose for one last photo.

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