Southwest watercolor artist Jan Wright has created her own unique approach to watercolor by glazing or layering washes, which gives a glow to her paintings, and by adding more detail than a lot of splashy, expressive watercolors show.
Often she adds a bird, animal, or Native Kachina figure to her landscapes, hidden within the shadows, textures, and reflections. “It’s like seeing images in the clouds,” Wright says, ” they’re in the stones and cliffs too.” Her sensitivity to the landscape may have been influenced by studying with Native based shamans, certifying her in the healing arts, though at present her artwork has taken precedence.
Jan Wright lives in an earthen roof home overlooking the Mesa Verde Range and calls Mancos, Colorado her home. Her love of the desert, canyons, ancient ruins, and rock art is evident in her intense and vivid watercolors.
As Mesa Verde National Park’s Artist in Residence in October of 2012, she gained a deeper understanding and respect for the Ancient Ones and where they lived; she now coordinates the program. She exhibited watercolors of the area’s ruins and rock art for six successful years in the lounge above the famed Metate Room at Mesa Verde’s Far View Lodge.
Jan has done over 22 one-woman shows throughout Utah, New Mexico, Texas, and Colorado and her work is in permanent collections of the Salt Lake County Arts Collection, Wells Fargo Bank of St. George, UT, Petrified Forest National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, CEU Prehistory Museum in Price, UT, and in many private collections throughout the country, Europe, Australia, and South Africa.
Besides exhibiting at Artisans of Mancos (www.artisansofmancos.com) and Taylor Raymond Gallery in Durango (www.taylorraymondgallery.com), Jan shows her watercolors in periodic shows at Durango Art Center, Cortez Cultural Center, and with the Mancos Valley Arts Council. Jan teaches watercolor workshops through the Mancos School of the West (www.schoolofthewest.org).