Fortid, nåtid og framtid
My name is Andrea Herkert and I am a Rosemaler from Belleville, Wisconsin, USA. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin -Madison with majors in Art and Art History. I find that both studies are important to Rosemaling, with its rich and unique traditions and culture. I have created art my whole adult life, doing much calligraphy and watercolor illustration and finally began Rosemaling seven years ago. This has been a life long dream as I am descended from a family from Telemark, Norway and my Mother was a Rosemaler when I was very young.
I have taken many classes from accomplished Rosemalers from both the United States and Norway. I am most interested in studying the different styles of Rosemaling and putting them into an art historical perspective. I think it is important to study the elements of the styles to define what makes them unique and ultimately what makes Rosemaling what it is and not just pretty flower painting.
While I have studied all the major styles of Rosemaling and paint in them, my passion and strength is painting the Gudbrandsdal style with it's beautiful curves and spatial relationships and it's dramatic coloring and shading, and the style of my ancestors, Telemark, with it intertwined scrolls, lyrical flow and movement, interconnection of shape and color and emphasis on linework detail. I think in my own painting, my use of color and linework has become my signature. I truly lose myself within my painting and I hope to bring the viewer in to do so as well.
For inspiration for my painting I study the old and read everything I can find. I keep sketchbooks and practice boards where I am constantly working out color and design. I also look to the acanthus carving as a point of departure for my Gudbrandsdal design. For my color palette I look to the colors of nature and the richness of gradations of tone and the play of light and shadow.
As to the future of Rosemaling, I think it is up to us, the current painters to leave a lasting legacy as we carry it forward from the old masters, perhaps our ancestors. I believe we do this by studying the old and having a strong sense of the elements that make it Rosemaling—holding on tightly to those traditions of the C and S shapes, the intertwined scrolls and flowers, the playful sense of immediacy, the creativity of shape and design and the pure joy which emanates from the painting. But then, we need to bring it into the future by bringing something new to it. If we as painters understand the uniqueness of Rosemaling design, and paint it in our own voice with our own interpretation it will be constantly fresh and new. I believe strongly that we have a responsibility to honor the past and keep the traditions alive, but not through pattern painting or imitation, except for learning and study purposes. I think that free hand painting, designing from our own hearts will carry on the traditions of the old while keeping them constantly evolving.