“THE SPACE BETWEEN”
Photography by Tasha Tolliver
HEART & MIND OF THE ARTIST
PH: What do you enjoy the most about creating?
CS: When I paint, time stands still. Even though music may be blasting in the background, I enter this ‘zone’ of quiet solitude, a place where I can truly be myself. It’s raw and emotional, there are highs and lows, but I am always left feeling like I’ve connected with something far greater than myself.
PH: What is special about where you grew up?
CS: I spent the first 9 years of my life in Bangkok, Thailand. My mother used to take me to the silk factories to pick out fabrics. I can still recall running my hands over all the brightly colored silk samples. Who knew there were so many shades of pink, orange, turquoise and green? I was sometimes allowed to take these samples home and I would create outfits for my dolls. I still collect fabrics today, looking for a creative way to use them in my home. I also believe this is where my fondness for gold leaf started. It was everywhere!
PH: What is the best compliment you’ve ever gotten?
CS: ‘You remind me of your mother’
PH: What’s your favorite way to start your day?
CS: A lovely cup of coffee and a long walk with my dog.
PH: Do you have a favorite drink?
CS: Manolo’s mojitos at Kuba Kuba Dos. Delicious!
PH: What is something you thought you would grow out of, but haven’t?
CS: Trying to please everybody.
PH: What do you wish you knew more about?
CS: Gardening and Football. But I really don’t care about football.
PH: What are some personal rules that you never break?
CS: ‘The Shands never give up’. It’s our family’s mantra. We have fallen and we have failed, but we never, ever give up.
PH: What do you regret not starting when you were younger?
CS: Using sunscreen everyday.
PH: Who has impressed you the most with what they have accomplished?
CS: Without a doubt, my family. My daughters are bright, beautiful and successful young women. I am in awe of them and they continue to amaze me everyday. My husband is the hardest working person I know who ALWAYS puts his family first.
PH: What TV show or movie do you refuse to watch?
CS: Reality TV. Total garbage!
PH: What’s the best thing you’ve received from your mother?
CS: My mother was the epitome of grace. Among other things, she taught me the art of setting a beautiful dinner table. She taught me to love chocolate; the good kind. I never once heard her gossip. Still working hard on that one.
PH: What do you believe everyone should do at least once in their lives?
CS: Do something that scares you. Travel far from home, alone. Learn to speak a second language proficiently.
PH: Beautiful Chris, thank you so much for sharing! We can’t wait to see “The Space Between”.
The Space Between opens on October 2nd, 2017, 9:00am – featuring over 70 paintings by Chris Shands. Artist reception on October 5th. Join us!
CHRIS SHANDS ARTIST BIO
I am drawn to color and texture. I usually begin my paintings by laying down bold and random brush work. It’s at this time that my work is raw and makes me a little uncomfortable. I try not to think too hard about what will happen, but instead, focus on the process of painting. It’s a bit like meditation; letting go and trusting. I have to remind myself not to be afraid of ruining a piece, as I know in time, it can be rescued. A lot of editing takes place; layers are added and then scraped off, revealing a little bit of the paintings history.
I was a ceramic artist for 15 years before emerging as an abstract painter two years ago. I had always wanted to paint but found plenty of excuses not to. A health scare and an empty nest was what I needed to pick up a brush and begin. It’s been such a wonderful journey and I’m very grateful for the support of family and friends.
I am happily married and the mother of 3 beautiful daughters. Someone once told me: your work makes me feel good. I can’t think of a nicer compliment.
FOR THE LOVE OF ART!