Monday, March 1, 2010

Betsy Best Spadaro -- Maker of Vibrant, Masterful Relief Prints

"Mish Mash" by Betsy Best Spadaro
36" x 36"
Layered lino-cuts on Japanese papers

Betsy Best Spadaro is one of those artists that is able to totally "nail" gestural poses with a minimum of drawn lines. And since her primary art medium happens to be relief printing, she has developed the ability to masterfully cut away or incise those drawn lines with the same precision. Add to that ability a wonderful sense of color, an eye for composition, an interesting take on roles and relationships, and a sense of humor, and the result is amazing, vibrant art. The above piece, from Betsy's "Housecleaning" series, was done several years ago to use up leftover bits of printed papers. The piece below, from her "What the Water Told Me" series, is one of twenty prints viewable on her website with below-the-surface imagery in beautiful combinations of colors.

"Swimmer II" by Betsy Best Spadaro

9" x 6"

Wood and linoleum relief print

"Circus Mom XI - Egg Balance" by Betsy Best Spadaro
10" x 6"
Linoleum relief print

The above image is one of a series that speaks to the many directions women are pulled in and surely resonates with moms everywhere. And the accordian book, below, provides a gallery of beautiful prints all in one compact format.

"Balance - Picture Book" by Betsy Best Spadaro
5.5" x 77"
Linoleum relief prints

In 2009, Betsy was extremely fortunate to have participated in three residencies in rapid succession. You'll find posts about her time in coastal Washington, in Italy and in Japan, as well as images of her most recent works on her blog. Be sure to visit her website, too, so you can see the depth of each of her series. So inspiring! Oh, and if all of the above isn't reason enough to go to her blog this instant, you simply must go to see the glorious photos of clouds she posted a few days ago. Cheers!


betsy best-spadaro said...

Hi Gloria, thanks for the nice post about my work. i only wish i'd done a little housekeeping and updated my website. that chore is number 24 on my to-do list! betsy

bob said...

Betsy and I were counterparts in art school fresh out of high school and struck up a friendship then but have not seen each other since - until last month. I got the opportunity to visit with her for the first time in years and at the end our visit she was kind enough to "permanently loan" me a set of her recently finished prints from her time spent in Japan. I am proud to have Betsy as a friend and even more proud to now be able to have works of hers on view in my home. If you haven't done so already I urge you to take the time to get to know her work - she continues to inspire me still after all these years

Gloria said...

You're welcome! Now you've got my curiousity up and I'm very excited to see your newer work. Do you have a flickr account set-up that you could upload photos to until you get an opportunity to update your website? Flickr is a breeze and then you could add the flickr link to your blog :) Just a thought...

Gloria said...


Yes, Betsy and her work are great inspirations. I can't wait to see what she's about to bring forth.