Art has been a part of Claudia Hershman's world since she was a child. Born in Detroit, she graduated from the University of Michigan with a BS in Design, majoring in painting and ceramics. She taught art in elementary school, and worked with polyform clay, making jewelry, before it became a popular material. Her pins and earrings were the small canvases that foreshadowed her current abstract paintings. Claudia spent several years making functional ceramics and exploring alternative methods in printmaking
"Experimentation and a love of color, shape, and geometric pattern are the focus of my process. I paint with acrylics and collage found materials into pieces. I am attracted to the freedom in children's art and seek to capture that spontaneity and joy. The organization of color, pattern, texture, value, space, and shape take precedence over theme or story. Meaning is found in the viewer's interpretation of what he sees. I love pattern and small details, which I use to create rhythm and flow. Using many different size elements, give the viewer an exciting journey through each piece.
My love of color is often a starting point. I begin by dripping, smearing, and washing appealing combinations of colors onto the canvas randomly. This approach allows me to be carefree and frees my mind of initial intent. Starting a painting by adding color aimlessly, allows me to enjoy the playful feeling of exploring like a child. Experimentation with different materials creates a dialog between the painting and me. Intuition guides how and what I do. The ideas come as each piece evolves. I start intuitively and then begin to analyze the canvas to find my next step in the process. The excitement of the emerging composition propels me forward. After the initial addition of color, texture and collage elements may be added for visual interest. In evaluating my progress in each piece, I look for dynamism, changes in size and pattern, rhythm, balance, movement, repetition of points of interest, and finally, harmony."
Claudia's mixed media paintings have received awards in several shows in Michigan. Her work is owned by Henry Ford Hospital, Molina Health Care, The Woman Center at Oakland Community College, Strathmore Apartments and in private collections.