Ms. Pratt is doing something Cool

Lily Connors, Editor

If you have taken a class with Ms. Pratt, you’ve most likely witnessed the artistic exploration she encourages in her students and her talent as an artist. Never one to gloat, Ms. Pratt is constantly creating, destroying, recreating and editing her art. She produces stunning and visually inviting oil paintings that feature abstract art, as well as landscapes and playful sketches. Although you may pass by her oil painting of an outhouse that hangs outside the faculty room everyday, Ms. Pratt’s art expands broadly beyond Pingree’s halls.

In the next few months, Ms. Pratt’s art will be shown at a number of local art shows, including a show on Friday, May 10th at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum and a show in a gallery Maine in the month of July. In terms of her May show, Ms. Pratt describes the pieces she will display as, “A new series of work I have been making, that are big semi-abstract oil paintings, and small ones too.” She hopes to finish at least eight pieces for the show. When asked what painting she was most excited to display, she responded, “I would say it’s that big piece…it’s five feet tall, and it’s titled Imagined Landscape no. 4.” The semi-abstract oil-paintings are all imagined landscapes. If lucky enough to encounter one in Ms. Pratt’s room, whether it’s completed or in progress, the paintings are reminiscent of landscapes in a dream, or a fuzzy memory from childhood; a mixture of reality and hallucination. Their ambiguity encourages the viewer to analyze its colors and homogeneous shapes in an attempt to decipher what exactly they are looking at.

In terms of teaching art at Pingree, Ms. Pratt derives inspiration from her students. She explains, “I get to teach so many different mediums and so many types of artists that I feel like almost everyday something happens in one of my classes that I want to bring back into my own studio. I’ll see a color combination or show students an artist and I realize I should be looking at that artist, or vice versa.” Walking through the hallway outside of her classroom, the vastly different and stunning collages, paintings, and drawings are a reminder of the artistic vision she garners in her students. Her passion and unique vision shine through her paintings as well.

When asked how students can publicize their work or potentially participate in an art gallery showing Ms. Pratt advises, “There are a lot of artists that post on Instagram, that have been able to bypass the artist-gallery relationship. They work directly with buyers and collectors. having an online presence, not exclusively an online presence, but it helps. Otherwise I think students should talk to me about student art shows in the area and beyond. There are a lot of local resources.”