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Multimedia artist Sherry Sweet Tewell’s expertise at mixing the experimental with editorial discipline makes her a constantly intriguing artist, capable of creating compelling works of art. Using acrylic, resin, manufactured objects, and the occasional wooden statue, the artist slips deftly between abstract, representational and overtly realistic work, infusing everything with her bold, acutely attuned color sense and her impeccably clean lines. Her views of island life, including botanicals, seascapes, and mermaids, speak of a lush world in which tones and textures intertwine. Her abstracts foreground the drips and splatters of a brush in movement, yet they have an uncanny tendency to cohere into something recognizable: a horizon at sunset, or the ocean depths. If there is a single thing that weaves this body of work together, though, it is the sense that everything, even the world of the abstract works, is bathed in sunlight.
In addition to her fine arts studio, Sherry Sweet Tewell has expertise in textile design, mural painting, and decorative artistry. She was born in Kentucky and currently creates both public and private works in Key West.
The Sun-Drenched Passion of Sherry Sweet Tewell
Sherry Sweet Tewell is a mixed media artist who employs abstraction in a particularly allusive postmodern manner to create works that are brilliantly colorful and accessible, despite their often nonobjective compositions.

A native of Kentucky, Tewell bravely migrated to Key West, Florida, several years ago. "After divorce, my children away in college, I decided it was time to live the life I had dreamed of. Leaving behind my family and friends, I packed only the belongings that would fit in my Miata and my cat, of course, and embarked on my journey. Not knowing a soul in Key West, I was excited about pursing my art career and becoming part of this quirky artist community."

The sun and color of the Keys permeates not only her paintings, sculptures and murals, but also her textile designs, book illustrations, and other items of applied art that she creates in her desire to survive by art alone and "apply my talents liberally."

Typically of Tewell's buoyant style is a large triptych in her favored medium of acrylic and resin on wood called "Tropical Celebration," in which a plethora of stylized leaf and frond shapes in a variety of luminous greens, yellows, and oranges merge the color and light of Impressionism with the vigorous gestural bravura of Abstract Expressionism.

Tewell also comes up with a vibrant spectrum of hues in "Bite of Orange," where the composition is almost minimal, consisting, at first glance, of an expansive area of green meeting a smaller area of orange under a low horizon line. On closer perusal, however, one discerns extensive underpainting beneath the thick, tactile surface that Tewell builds up with layers and glazes of acyrlic and resin. The green area at the top of the composition was apparnetly acheived with yellow slathered over a bright cerulean blue hue, while in the lower area the artist allows a golden ocher pentimento to show through her vigorous network of bold orange brush strokes. At once sensuous and sumptuous, the entire surface glows with subtle chromatic highlights.

The sense of pure joie de vivre that Tewell acheives through her use of colors carries over into works such as "Weaving the Sunset," where blindingly brilliant vertical steaks descend like a waterfall of light; "Slice of Lime," its title hinting wittily at the liquid refreshement that hard-partying denizens of the Keys imbibe to beat the heat, its strong composition evolking the local landscape and climate with just a few succinct forms and lumnious hues; and "Some Black," where three tiny dark areas that could almost suggest silhouetted figures are all subsumed by big bold blocks of variegated primaries as luscious as those in the best canvases of Hans Hofmann.

But that all is not merely fun in the sun of a tropical bohemian haven comes across in Tewell's bitterly titled assembleage sculputre, "He Came On My Dream," It consists of a shapely nude figure resembling the kind of mermaid ornament once used to decorate the prow of a ship. Cut off iat the thighs, her torso artfully defaced with red and blue paint, gagged at the mouth, it makes an affecting, perhaps cautionary, statement about female disempowerment in what is sometimes called the "post feminist era" by an artist who candidly refers to how her work has been affected by the unanticipated end of a long relationship.

"The heart swells with joy and love, the heart breaks with sorrow and pain," says Sherry Sweet Tewell, who channels both the joy and suffering of her every experiences into passionate works of art. --Marie R. Pagano
GALLERY&STUDIO
Nov. - Dec 2012 / Jan. 2021 www.galleryandstudiomagazine.com Vol. 15 No. 2 New York (Pg. 22)
Sherry Sweet and Agora Gallery invite you to Sherry's upcoming show, "The Substance of Abstraction." View the complete invitation.
ARTisSpectrum Review
American artist Sherry Sweet Tewell has gained national recognition and acclaim for her vibrant paintings, murals, textile designs, print illustrations and mixed media sculptures. Inspired by the intense light and mesmerizing colors of her home in Key West, Florida, the painter creates brilliant abstract landscapes and seascapes using a dynamic palette of rich blues and greens accented by warm yellows, magentas, and other vivacious hues. Within each composition, lines and forms are spontaneous and exciting, created from a process in which Sweet Tewell experiments with layers of paint as well as glazes, applying the paint and then scratching through the layers to reveal what lies beneath.
It is this theme of what can be found on the surface versus what is hidden underneath that has become a central focus of Sherry Sweet Tewell’s work. Primarily, this artistic exploration is framed in the modern female experience, in which women struggle to find their individual position between the submissive roles so often required from them and the great feminine power that lies within the soul. The artist herself describes her work as “provocative, powerful, thought provoking. Revealing the dark, submissive inner person versus the bright, composed image one presents to others. The heart swells with joy and love. The heart breaks with sorrow and pain.”

View Sherry's profile in ARTisSpectrum online.
View Sherry's photo in ARTisSpectrum online.