Taliesin Artist-in-Residence 2015-16

April 2015

Beth LaCour has been selected as a Taliesin 2015-2016 Artist-in-Residence. This small, selective group of experienced visual artists engage and respond to the unique characteristics of the architectural sites and natural setting of Taliesin and Taliesin West and their vibrant communities. Visiting international artists work alongside the architecture students and faculty in a dynamic and creative community on one of the Taliesin campuses in either Spring Green, Wisconsin or Scottsdale, Arizona. Beth will be a resident in Wisconsin for the month of July working and living in historic buildings originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built by him and his apprentices.

Frank Lloyd Wright established the Taliesin Fellowship in 1932, which was based on the idea of the allied arts fostered in a community of learners that could be an alternative to the traditional university. The program developed into what we know today as Taliesin, the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture. From its origins,Taliesin has served as a living, working, educational space, forming a creative and diverse community of professional architects, artists, faculty, students and staff. According to the Taliesin website, "Taliesin is acknowledged as the embodiment of American architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s commitment to the creation of exceptional environments that harmonize architecture, art, culture, and the land."

Beth's artwork is derived from the interplay of natural light reflected throughout architectural spaces with objects constructed from local naturally occurring plant and earth materials. She has a strong background in traditional painting, printmaking and sculpture but her current interests are in more transitory objects made of paper that is handmade, printed using non-toxic intaglio methods and are folded and formed often with architectural motifs or inspiration that play well within natural and architectural spaces. At the core, her sensibilities are born from the complex simplicity of nature using materials and processes that are earth and human friendly embodying a spirit of sustainability by reducing the impact of hazardous materials on our air quality, groundwater and health. Beth's folded paper vessels are geometric evolving into curved natural forms designed to catch light and the eye drawing one into exploring shape and light from a new perspective.

Current explorations have centered on mathematical planning for both expansive creative processes and repeatability of form design. These forms continue to evolve toward designs for lighting fixtures, shelters, and organic vessels using additional decoration from vegetable ink, plant fibers, seeds and pits. While at Taliesin, she will work on combining previous work in paper, papyrus, printmaking, and sculpture to explore traditional forms rendered by a folding process that we see in nature at the human scale and the micro scale such as seen in the folding of proteins of which all life is formed.