“I WANT to engage the viewer to se e the whole work
then deconstruct it to individual parts, and then to
stand back and see the whole work once again,”
During the shutdowns in 2020, while taking long
wal ks with her dogs t hrough neighborhoods, Creed pho -
tographed scenes to paint. Sp rawling phon e lines caught
her eye and made the ir way into her art.
“I saw that telephone lin es were in every photograph. I
started to embrace them,” she s ays . “On a physical level,
telephone lines are a connecti on between you and me. It’s
a p hysical connection. I s tar ted bringing very strong lines
into my work to show the co nn ection between thos e we
On e of her favorite works is entitled Have Fun. It uses
l ines a nd a l ad der to express, through a bstraction, her
mother’s best advice.
“T hose we re my mother’s last words, ‘Have fun,’ and
words I l ive by,” says Creed, who lost both her parents in
Creed’s dad taught at Brown University during the years
in Providence. He r mother cham pioned creativity, of ten
handing Cre ed a pack of crayons and a b lank piece of
“ Never a coloring book, always a blan k piece of paper. It
taught me to focus and create,” says Creed.
Have Fun as well as Windy Fishing Village a nd Reckoning
from Cree d’s 2021 portfolio are at Dur ham’s Horse &
Buggy Press and Wilmingto n’s New Eleme nts Gallery.
“I love those pieces . We were excited to g et t hose. The
composition is really stro ng an d incredibly whi m sic al. They
are beautiful,” says New Elements Gallery owner Miriam
Creed’s “Sea and Sky” series is minimal and mon ochro-matic,
reflecting a love of the coa st befo re deve lopment,
when it was one giant playground.
“Co astal Maine where I grew up was still re m ote and
n ot heavily po pulated . It has since bee n dis covered. I see
giant houses now built in f ields wh ere I used to play, so my
sea and sky series has three rules: no boats , no house s,
no people,” laughs Creed . “It’s only because I want people
to exper ience the world I experie nced as a kid, whic h wa s
wild, ope n and free.”
Sea and sk y works su c h as Autumn Light and Contemplation
are at New Elements .
Cree d teaches a class at the Durham Arts Council much
like the one Conti taught her called Paint ing Have Fun, 48 x 24 inches, mixed media on canvas.
“So many of us los e our creativity in schoo l because we’re
told you have to draw it or paint it a certain way. My whole purpose is to free people back up so they ca n ju st make
work and as my mother wo uld say, ‘Have fun.’ I have people who just keep ta ki ng the cla ss over and ove r again
because they’re having fun creating their own art” says Creed.
Creed says she p lans to continue teaching and “makin g work” for as long as she ca n.
“It’s my expre ssion. I ca n’ t imagin e not making ar t , it’s something I’ve always done,” s ays Cree d.
58 june 2022