Exhibit features paintings and handbags
“Pas de Deux,” an exhibit at ZFolio Gallery in Solvang, is a unique collaboration between Belinda Hart, who creates silk paintings, and Bozenna and Lukasz Bogucki, who design three-dimensional works with stainless steel.
The show, which debuted in November, has been extended to Feb. 28.
Ms. Hart’s paintings are inspired by natural settings of earth, water and sky during morning, midday and dusk.
“My technique, which utilizes layered and reverse painting on silk, produces a rich, three-dimensional surface with hints of gold metallic highlighting the design. I then mount each painting on canvas and embellish it with additional paint and design work. The result is a blend of color and texture that is both original and unique,” said Ms. Hart, a longtime member of FiberVision, a Santa Barbara-based fiber artists collective, and a resident of Santa Ynez Valley since 2008.
She developed her painting process after attending an artists retreat in 2019 at South Lake Tahoe, where she attended a workshop with Santa Fe-based silk painter Betty Busby.
“I am fairly methodical in the way I work. I just work on one piece at a time,” Ms. Hart said. “The textured silks that I have been producing require a multilayered paint process. Each layer has to be dry before applying the next.
“One of my favorite parts of this process results in an ‘element of surprise,’ when one altered fabric dictates the direction I take with the rest of the layers, regardless of earlier preconceptions of the piece as a whole.”
While she continues to be inspired by nature and the outdoors in her art work, Ms. Hart said that the pandemic has caused her to become more introspective.
“The minimization of outside exposure for me set up an environment that promoted an expression of feeling or emotion, rather than being a reflection of the physical environment.”
The Bogucki couple, who earned their masters’ degrees from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, came to America some 30 years ago and always worked in different fields of design: interior, graphic, industrial, exhibit design, even couture collections.
They are unveiling their “Opera Collection” of sculptural handbags in the exhibit.
“It consists of some 40 models named after famous operas,” said Mrs. Bogucki. “All the work from design to finishing touches is done in our Los Angeles workshop.”
Prices for the evening purses and handbags range from $280 to $780.
Many of the lush creations, which are made of stainless steel mesh, are embellished with 23 karat gold leaf, copper and brass, and are aesthetic as well as utilitarian.
“We got inspired by stainless steel mesh while working on a new line of lamps in 2000. The steel mesh is the most beautiful, highly industrial and rarely seen material, mostly hidden deep down in the filtering systems,” said Mr. Bogucki.
“We decided to design something useful that would take advantage of the looks of that mesh. That’s how the concept was born, and we started our great adventure of designing and making evening purses and handbags out of stainless steel mesh. We are fascinated by the material after all these years no less than in the first days of our adventure.”
The couple, who call their business Bo’s Arts, said that many of the people who buy their bags are collectors “who don’t keep their creations in the closet with the rest of their accessories. Instead, they display them like art pieces.”