Rachel Perry Welty, Lost in My Life (price tags), 2009. Pigmented ink print, edition of 3. 91.25 x 60 (Photo courtesy of the artist and Yancey Richardson Gallery)
(Note: All photographs can be viewed in a larger size by clicking on the image)
Every artist must work within certain limitations, and these limitations come in a variety of forms. It could be financial restraints, a lack of free time, formal education, or materials, or something as basic as having limited skills or knowledge. Rachel Perry Welty is a marvelous example of how an artist can use such limitations to her benefit.
Welty is a self-described “late bloomer” and didn’t attend art school until age 36, when she decided to follow in her mother’s footsteps and attend the Museum School in Boston.
“I discovered art around the same time that I became a working mother,” Welty explained to me, “so the only way I knew how to make it was to maneuver it into my day. I gravitated toward materials that were around me and that were easy to pick up and put down, as a defense against the frustration of regular interruptions.”
By making art throughout the course of her day and using everyday objects like receipts, bread tags, aluminum foil, and telephone messages as her medium, Welty found a way to make art in spite of her busy family schedule.