Originally from California, Helen Dannelly is a Chicago-based artist who studied Photorealistic painting and printmaking at San Francisco State University and sculpture, including bronze-casting, at the University of Minnesota. For the past several years, Dannelly has been working both two and three dimensionally in encaustic, which is beeswax mixed with damar resin. She has taught beginning drawing as well as introductory workshops in 3-D Encaustic. She will co-teach the Intro to 3-D Encaustic with Alicia Forestall-Boehm at her Bridgeport Art Center Studio on October 21 – 22, 2017. She has shown at Slate Contemporary in Oakland, California. An award-winning sculptor, her work is in private and public collections throughout the country. Her work will be in a group exhibition comprised of select Midwestern artists who work in encaustic July 21 – September 8 in the Fourth Floor Gallery of the Bridgeport Art Center, 1200 W. 35th Street in Chicago. The reception is on July 21 from 7 – 10 pm.
I am interested in metamorphosis as a natural phenomenon as well as a personal phenomenon. In my work, I address the spectrum of vulnerability – from closed, hardened, defensive exteriors to open, soft, colorful interiors. My work is inspired by the natural world: plant life, sea life, pods, seeds, cocoons, leaves, coral, sea anemones, cellular structure, bone, earth, landscape, color, and the interplay of light and shadow. My pieces are nature-referential rather than replication. The three dimensional work resembles objects in nature, but they are unique abstractions.