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Sarah Grote

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Sarah Willman Grote is an emerging artist who has already won a number of awards. She has shown in numerous local exhibits and her paintings are held in private collections across the country. She describes her work and a little history as follows:

When I paint abstract works, I paint intuitively, I do not begin a piece with a pre-conceived notion of a composition. Rather, I begin painting and try my best to follow the path of the composition as it unfolds. I'd like to share a quote by John Held, Jr. that is especially relevant to the journey of all artists but can be relevant to any journey in life:

"Don't ever begin to believe that when you get to a certain point, you're there. Don't ever put a limit to what you want to be, because when you get to that place, you're nowhere. Don't ever set yourself a stopping place, because maybe that is just the beginning."

I was born in Missouri, and by age fourteen my family had moved to Ohio. I always knew I was an artist. As a very young child, I loved to draw and paint, and this was my identity while growing up. In college, although I studied art, I chose more practical studies for my majors, graduating with degrees in accounting and finance from Miami University (Ohio). Unlike most of my business classmates, instead of sitting for the CPA exam upon graduation, I headed to West Africa. For three years, I served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon and, to date, have been waiting for another experience to be as meaningful. I believe my homecoming as an artist may be the closest I'll come.

Following a period of time in Washington, D.C. in international development work, I moved to California in 1991. After a fifteen year hiatus, I began to study art again, this time watercolor. The featured paintings are all about my relationships with souls that I have loved and not loved, encountered, embraced, run from, or observed. They are also about the "beyond" - the unknown and the unknowable. Through the medium of watercolor, I am exploring the freedom of a mind at play. But sometimes play can be serious business.

I would encourage any artistic spirit to eventually find a way back to what he or she loves, which is what I did, because it is the only way to be whole, and it is where each of us belongs.

I live in the Santa Monica Mountains in Malibu. For now, I share Clifftop Studio with my Rhodesian Ridgeback Shanta and my recently adopted dogs, Sherlock and Bear. Nature surrounds me here and I find peace in this place to paint. I also love to write poetry, hike, swim, do volunteer work, and most of all to laugh. There's an old Irish saying by an unknown author: "Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly."

Within a few months, I will have my web site functioning which will feature my art and Clifftop Studio. Please come and visit me then at www.clifftopstudio.com.

Contact Sarah Willman Grote at clifftop@malibuonline.com


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