Welcome to the Column-Inch Collection!
Come visit our new community gallery to see local artists’ work. The front lobby of our offices at 42 Severance Green in Colchester have been converted to a free art space, where new local art will be exhibited monthly. Stop by Monday through Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Or view the online gallery below!
Spotlight on Kirsten Cheney
Column-Inch Collection Artist for the month of May
More information on Kirsten:
By Elsie Lynn Parini
The Essex Reporter
It’s a small wonder that Kirsten Cheney can find the time to create art, but she says she can’t help it. Between mothering her four children, ages 9-14, moving into a 1834 farmhouse in Jericho just three miles from her parents’ homestead in Essex, farming ducks, chickens and bees, and piecing together work as a graphic designer — including a part-time gig with The Essex Reporter/The Colchester Sun — Cheney manages to paint.
“I think I like to add beauty to my surroundings,” Cheney explained. “I enjoy the process of exploring and creating with color. When you allow yourself the time and freedom from distractions to get in the flow of creating, it’s a wonderful place to exist. I find that flow when I paint — whether it’s an oil for the wall, the actual wall itself or a piece of furniture — also when I’m gardening or designing. The form changes, but I have a constant artistic drive.”
Cheney describes her paintings as “abstract expressionism with a little lyrical abstraction.” The 47-year-old began her design career at Emerson College, where she earned her bachelor’s in marketing with a minor in graphic design. She continued her schooling at the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, Mass., Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, Calif., Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Calif., and online courses through The Art Institute of Pittsburgh.
She moved back to Vermont six years ago and has since launched Swannery Design and Sten Soppa — or Stone Soup in Swedish — an Etsy store where Cheney sells reclaimed and painted furniture.
“I am the classic tale of growing up in this area, moving away and then fighting my way back to raise my kids here,” explained the Colchester native. “The ever-changing beauty of the area, the ‘free to be you and me’ attitude, and the quality of creative spirit is inspiring. It’s a special place. It is home.”
See Kirsten’s work displayed at the Column-Inch Collection throughout the month of May. Drop by anytime between 9:30 a.m-5 p.m., Monday through Friday at the Essex Reporter and Colchester Sun offices at 42 Severance Green, Unit 108, Colchester.