The Cove Members
“I believe in the kindness of humanity. I believe that our diversity is what makes this world interesting. I consider myself an expanding artist because we are always transforming. My work walks with me and changes with me. In my paintings I am trying to transport you to those places of my imagination where we are often find ourselves. I want to touch your soul, open your heart, and invite you to walk with me.”
“I am transported by the magic of the natural world. When painting animals, I like to capture an emotional moment of in the animal’s life, hoping to show that animals are conscious beings with feelings and emotions of their own. I am inspired by wildlife photographers. Through their lens I have traveled to places that I may never go to in person. This has made me more aware of the natural wonders of the world, an awareness I hope to communicate in my paintings.“
I paint in an impressionistic style evoking the desired emotions by the combination of color and strokes rather than the appearance of the subject. I transcend to a different world when I communicate with my media, and this allows me to paint the subject’s essence. It is my purpose to create art which is both familiar and unfamiliar, and intriguing either way. I want people to enjoy seeing and experiencing my art and to be able to have a dialogue and connection with my paintings.
Painter, Installation Artist
“The world is our toy box. Paintings are snapshots of play-in-progress. People are looking for a large, uncharted planet out in the Oört cloud. Many can recite NFL stats, or optimal planting times. People care, and study, and continue. They are curious about things, and many of them take pride in making or growing or organizing things. This human urge to find or create personal meaning everywhere is the focus of my paintings and constructions."
“I make mud look GOOD! I am hooked on ceramics. I produce some utilitarian pieces, but really enjoy working with what mother nature offers: mud, leaves and sticks, and fire! I love the challenge of commissioned work, especially outdoor installations. I really enjoy the unpredictability of the Raku firing process. My work is organic and earthy, topped with my heart and soul.”
"My brush is my voice. It speaks for me.
My art sings everything I think and feel, with only the whisper of the brush gliding over canvas as its sound.
My quiet song is my escape from the daily assault on my ears and my eyes from words, words, words.
I feel that as a nation, we suffer from Information Fatigue. I want my art to provide as much respite for the viewer as it does the creator."
"Our modern life offers us millions of options - almost all at the touch of a few keystrokes. It is only by our personal decision to slow down and create art, or speak to an artist and invest in their creations. When we embrace original art in all its many forms… this can being us closer to each other and our own humanity."
Charles Esser, Emeritus
“Historically we are living in a fantastic time, a modern day renaissance on almost every level. Artistically, new materials and genres are changing the way we look at the world and express ourselves in real time. McKinney’s artistic community is a vibrant part of the North Texas art scene, and The Cove plays a major role in our creative community, featuring a different artist every weekend. I enjoyed being a part of it.”
Sculptor, Painter, Weaver
“My fiber wall sculptures are made using a technique with the themes of shields, totems and masks. I use the loom for shaping to create dimensionality. Both fine art and craft methods are combined and redefined using earth materials from plants and animals. My current works exploring man-made packaging materials and issues of branding and identity.”
Maria Bush Hampton
“My love of art started when I was very young. I am lucky enough to have a creative mother who is very artistic, whose endless array of ideas enhanced my projects. I like incorporating emotional and textural connections to my art pieces to add more life, and sometimes humor, to my work. I want my artwork to touch people with more than a single sense, and make it irresistible not to touch.”
“I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t interested in art. Faces have always been fascinating to me. The great painters of the past have been my inspiration, and I have studied their work, along with that of many excellent contemporary artists, for years. Now, by the grace of God, I am doing the thing that I love: painting people.”
“My work depicts parallel connections between meditation, nature, and art to formulate an equal balance between serenity and abstraction within my paintings. I am inspired by the uncompromising perspective our cosmos exhibits between nature and femininity, fire and ice, deconstruction and preservation. As I paint on canvas, I continue my quest to visually capture the spirit of pure feminism as it naturally exists within our landscape.”
Painter, Sculptor, Jewelry Designer
“I am an Artist. I’ve been driven to create from a young age – it is deeply woven into my being. Sharing the beauty of life, the land and our contribution to the pages of human history is important to me. I like depicting a moment in time that future generations will look back on and get a sense of who we were and what we liked to do in this time period on earth.
Painter, Sculptor, Jewelry Designer
“When I start a painting, I have a vague idea of what I want, but I let the canvas and brushes lead me to the finished product. I see beauty in small mundane objects such as a grain of sand, rain drops or a bird’s nest that others might pass by and not notice. I want to bring this respect of our world to others in a way that they might not have imagined or seen before.”
“I try to create visually stimulating images in whatever medium in which I am working: painting, photography, printmaking. We spend most of our lives communicating and thinking verbally. More attention needs to be given to influences that can be transmitted only visually or tactilely. Much ‘information’ about the world cannot be expressed by strings of words or other symbols.”
“My paintings capture the Spanish façades, African rhythms, Taino Indian symbols, and natural beauty of the island where I grew up. I choose a detail of a particular place or thing to paint that will spark memories and cause the viewer to remember more than what they are seeing. If I could only bring the warmth of the tropical sun, the salt air from the sea, the pounding sound of the waves, the cold, foggy nights of the rain forest, the delicious scents of comida criolla (Creole) cooking at the kiosko….and the music, ohh the music…”
"Passionate and bold are the words I use to describe my work. This energy drives my emotions and puts zip in my steps. My genre is abstract expressionist which gives me creative options. For me that means creating a painting that is full of life, motion, drama, and surprise. Vivid strong colors are vital, as are layers of pigment. Surprise is always necessary. I’ve often said, 'Sometimes I feel like I’m channeling Picasso.'"
“If I see it, I want to paint it. I don’t know why I paint, I just do. I have a passion for painting still lifes. Some are formal and some very casual. My compositions pair fruits and flowers with glass, porcelain, metal and paper objects—usually on polished wood surfaces, and with splashes of reflected colors.”
Don Simmons - In memoriam
Don Simmons was a great friend, a terrific conversationalist, and a brilliant photographer. He was a mentor to many photographers, always claiming he had the best black and white darkroom in the area. Don left behind a phenomenal photographic documentary of his travels and community, and myriad memories of his warmth, generosity and optimism. He was a supportive member of The Cove, and will always have a place on the wall.
“The splendor and beauty of God’s creation is what inspires me to paint. My desire is that my brush and canvas shine the light of hope. I want my art to truly reflect my emotions and feelings. Life is constantly changing and flowing – so my creativity leads me to capture each moment. The essence of my art is a reflection of faith, light and creativity. I am blessed!”
“Thematically my art focuses on constants across time: hope, love, belonging and loss. The process of choosing the appropriate substrate for an idea, drawing, carving, inking, layering, and hand printing combine science and human expression brilliantly. I hope my work will inspire and engage the imagination.”
“Through art, my desire is to capture moments, the moments of life that are filled with wonder and need to be savored in memory. I believe art brings about healing and hope, speaking directly to the spirit through its universal language. Art can be lively, whimsical or sentimental, recalling moments of shifting perspective or documenting personal and historical triumphs. Art crumbles barriers and inspires new vision for the future. In the public venue, art can unite communities by building common goals and instilling a sense of belong through the shared experience."
“Getting in touch with one’s soul is a good thing. I try to remember this when I am creating my art. As a self-taught artist, I am driven by curiosity and my need to explore. I do not have a style or particular medium I like to work with... I love them all! I love nature, color, and fighting for the dignity and equality of all mankind. I love to celebrate the strength of women while also noting our vulnerabilities. My goal is to inspire those who see my work to look closely and enjoy how the art makes them feel.”
“I paint sometimes as I see it, other times as I imagine it – but always because I am loving it. Art to me is about a beautiful journey of self-discovery and a medium to articulate my inner glee. Art is typically experienced by the sense of sight. I would like my art to be experienced through all the five senses by transporting my audience to a place which invokes a certain feeling of joy and a sense of being in the moment. I want them to step into the canvas and breathe in the world within my composition.”
“From an early age, my teacher and mentor, Gustav Likan, instilled in me the desire to create beauty through color and form, regardless of the subject matter. I grew up in a musical and artistic family, and have always thrived on the synergy of creative collaboration. When I paint to live music, I am a conduit for the expression of sound through color and form.”
“Art for me is more than paint on a canvas. It is community, belief, vulnerability, and self-discovery. Motion captivates me. Whether it’s light playing off someone’s expression as they play the guitar or the abrupt and ruggedly beautiful turning of a cutting horse, both inspire me to capture a moment by throwing myself into the glorious mess that is my studio.”
My art is an expression of my love of the natural world and my pure joy in the act of creating.
I am drawn to the luminescence and freshness of transparent watercolor. Though I sometimes stray into other media, I am always excited to return to the inspiration, beauty (and thrills) of painting in watercolors.
When I am immersed in art, life is good!