Barbara Schiller Art Studio

Barbara Browner Schiller

Barbara Browner Schiller was born in New York City. During her high school years she took art classes and, despite her young age, won an art award. Thereafter, she went on to the State University of New York at Cortland and entered their Teacher’s Education program. Although her major area of study was history, all of her electives were used to take art and music courses. After college graduation, she studied sculpture at the New School for Social Research-Parsons School of Design under the tutelage of Manolo Pasqual and later with Martin Holiday. It was also at this time that she earned her Masters degree in teaching the visually impaired. Despite her hectic schedule, her evenings were spent with mallet and chisel in hand, working on stone sculptures.

As an artist and, more specifically, as a sculptor, Barbara sees her role as being able to sense and mirror needs and feelings which she can then transcribe into her art to evoke similar responses in the viewer. Some of the themes which can be found in her work are those of mothers, fathers and their children. To Barbara, the idea of family is particularly inspiring and most of her creative ideas come from watching children at play and interacting with their families. It is at those moments that Barbara is washed with feelings of love, happiness or elation. The universality, timelessness, and continuity of the family, its unity and expressiveness, its containment of all of humanity’s emotions, form the core meaning of her work. These are the ideas and feelings that she tries to recapture and express to others within her works of art.

Reaching for a chunk of clay, a sheet of wax, or a mallet and chisel to work on stone, her hands appear to simply move by themselves as if having a life of their own. For Barbara, her hands are really an extension of an overwhelming, all encompassing need to create and render for others, so that they can see and feel that which she has already experienced.

After some time, Barbara found that she enjoyed working in a medium new to her, wax. She found wax to be very rewarding since it was possible for her to create extension and motion that was not possible in stone. Of course, working in wax was her first step towards creating bronze sculptures.

It was at this time that a noted sculptor, a professor at SUNY Purchase, Phillip Listengart, became her teacher. SUNY had its own foundry and it was possible for Barbara to create her sculptures in wax, pour the bronze, and complete all the needed metal work there. In addition to the sculptures cast at the Purchase Foundry, others have been cast at the internationally renowned Tallix Foundry and at the Argos Foundry. In every case, all the castings were completed under her direct supervision.

As more time passed, Barbara found herself wanting to also experiment in additional mediums. Over the years she has created etchings and monoprints, generated stained glass murals, designed one-of-a-kind hats, formal handbags, cloth dolls and quilted non-traditional wall hangings. Every one of these artistic modes has become one more way for Barbara to creatively express herself.

Since having retired from teaching, Barbara has found it easier to find daylight time to create her sculptures. Now, to her great pleasure, her days are predominately filled with the creation of her art.

Since winning her first award when she was in High School, Barbara has exhibited her works and won awards from many places including the Hechscher Museum, Knickerbocker Artists of New York at the Salmagundi Club, the New England Exhibition at the Silvermine Guild Center and the Katonah Museum, as well as numerous galleries. She has had a one person show and was invited to be in a 7 person show. She has been asked many times to showcase her work in Suny Purchase. She has been featured at Bloomingdale’s in Westchester and she has won many awards for sculpture in local exhibitions. She had a two person show at the Gallery at the Marmara-Manhattan in N.Y.C.

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 © 2003 Barbara Schiller Art Studio