Artist StatementFragments fascinate mosaic artist Sherri Loomis. “Walking to work in Baltimore, I saw puzzles, toys, broken 45’s, chicken bones and cracked circuit boards,” says Loomis. “I started using found ‘gutter glitter’ in my artwork.” Loomis embeds metal, glass, and found objects into mosaic artwork to create tables and wall panels. Her mosaic style ranges from classic Ravenna gilded glass techniques with prominent work lines, to more whimsical ones using plastic animals, skeleton keys, bones, and game pieces. In 1977, Loomis began combining photographs, paintings, found objects and monoprints with map-like images. A “new” Bachelor of Fine Arts program in Mixed Media allowed her to continue to experiment with unconventional art materials. In 1979, she created large-scale “map-paintings” of wall-sized lithographs and lumber connected to canvas by fragile joints made of dotted lines of temporary tape. Later, working as a junior cartographer, she created a series of paintings which explored boundaries and planes using highly-colored cardboard with metal scraps. She exhibited in Washington Project for The Arts and 9311?2 ‘F’ Street Gallery in Washington, D.C. 1984-1988. She studied under Rick Shelley, a master mosaic artist (“Map of The World”, Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, MD) trained in Venice, Italy. Her current mosaics are inspired by classic Ravenna, Italy techniques where glass tesserae (small pieces of glass) are cut at different angles and set into mortar. The tilted glass surface causes a flickering of reflected light, especially on gilded or metal-leafed glass. This deliberate irregularity of the facets moves the eye through shapes of highly-colored textures.
ARTIST’S BIOGRAPHY - Sherri Loomis Loomis won a scholarship to study art at Skidmore College’s Summer Six program in 1975. In Saratoga Springs, NY, Loomis explored photography and collage techniques and assisted in the darkroom. From 1975 - 1976 she attended Tusculum College in Tennessee where she expanded her growing interest in photography and lithography. Loomis became familiar with hand-blown art glass through renowned glass artist Vernon Brejcha and assisted glass blower Steve Haszonics. After this, Loomis spent 1976-1977 building a portfolio and attending drawing courses in New Orleans, La. In 1977-1980, she attended Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville where she honed her lithography skills assisting master printmaker Leila Daw. Loomis began combining drawing, painting, monoprints and collages. Loomis explored conceptual art creating writings with map images, and continued to experiment with map-like collages in lithographs. In 1979 she created large-scale “map paintings” consisting of large 3-D materials connected to canvas and large-scale lithographs by fragile joints made of temporary tapes and dotted lines. Loomis graduated from SIUE with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Mixed-Media. Loomis moved to Washington, D.C and worked as a junior cartographer. In 1980-1989 she created a body of highly-colored paintings which explored boundaries, textures and planes of color made of corrugated cardboards and metal scraps. These were exhibited in Washington Project for The Arts 1986-1988 and 931 1/2 F Street Gallery. In 1990, Loomis moved to Baltimore, MD. and worked as a Graphic Designer for The Baltimore Sun, winning numerous awards for commercial design and photographic collages in Maryland-DC-Delaware Design Shows and “Best of Show” in 2001. In 1998, Loomis became actively involved with a group of artists who studied with Rick Shelley, a master mosaic artist (“Map of The World”, Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, MD) trained in Venice, Italy. Loomis developed and exhibited a significant group of mosaics which masterfully combined images, colors and abstract shapes. Loomis’ current work is inspired by classic Ravenna techniques and map-like forms in planes of color. Since moving to Western Maryland in 2002, Loomis has been working on a portfolio which includes mosaic wall panels and fine art furniture.