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As a child, Cherry SWEIG owned a Welsh pony that awakened her, at an early age, to recreate her love for horses in art. Last October, she was invited to Corfu by her children's godfather, Michael George Mathos, to visit the town of Leftkimi, where his father, George Gatsoulis Mathos, grew up ... and paint a journal of the island.
Upon her introduction to Aliki Steen and The SILVA Project, she was enthralled with the Skyros horses and their struggle to survive as an ancient breed. Her childhood passion for horses was revived and she is now dedicating a new collection of artworks to this project.
Sweig returned to Corfu again in July 2006 to spend more time with the horses in their own habitat ... to study and paint them 'plein-air' and commit every detail she could to memory. She discovered that each of their personalities were quite individual and that their history might play a significant artistic role.
From there, she made three artworks, her first statement in the HORSE ART exhibition in aid of the Skyros horse.
These ideas, combined with the movement to secure the breed, have motivated her to use her painting skills to further the cause both in the United States and Europe.
"I hope to enlighten others about these wondrous and charming small horses with a monumental history. Using a varied palette of acrylic paints and special effect mediums, results in a unique representation of the contrasting textures of wild manes and silky soft coats. The use of this 'Hanging Tapestry' format and a softly painted background of Parthenon Equestrian relief imagery also hints to their fascinating ancestral connection. Upon closer observation, their sweet-natured temperament shines through in my art with that special gleam in their eyes
Other artworks in my portfolio portray the Skyros Horses in true-to-life sizes, where the viewer relates not only to the art in general, but to the actual horse ... as if they have touched the horses themselves".
Poway, California, September 2006
"Cherry Sweig is an artist of ingenuity and with a genuine passion for enlightening others through her art.
After a ten-year career in Graphic Design, and Video Game Creations, she focused on the Japanese art of Gyotaku for the next eighteen years. As Curator of Art for the Chula Vista Nature Centre in California, her self-guided Gyotaku display explains the process behind the art, step by step, where she used the ancient Gyotaku method to make an imprint by hand of an actual fish, leaf, shell or flower.
Her artworks have adorned the walls of our nature centre since 1995 - educating the public about the powerful relationship between science, nature and art.
While painting in the 'Plein Aire' technique during travels to Europe, the Caribbean and Hawaii, she re-discovered that rare spontaneity that only comes from painting outdoors.
The allure of open-air painting captured her artistic eye and she focused on a new collection artworks from her recent travels. Using a vibrant palette, dancing patterns of light and a charismatic centre of interest, her imagery draws the viewer in, with the feeling that they too have also been to that actual setting.
Exhibitions include: The Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.D., galleries and private collections throughout the U.S.A., Grand Cayman, Europe and the Egyptian Red Sea.
Public Programs Coordinator of The Chula Vista Nature Center