All posts by Judy
Artists’ Fellowship, 2003: Crafts
Judith Hoyt: Artist Statement
The figures in my work hold the pain, pleasure, and spirit of the human condition. Each piece evolves through trial and error, the shapes and colors of the materials often guiding the development. I find metal that is in the process of being reclaimed by the earth along roads and in dumps. The metal is discolored, corroded, and misshapen by the random processes of history. This history gets passed on to the figures. My pieces feel primitive but have a relevance to the present.
More about the Artist:
Judith Hoyt was born in the Catskill Mountains of New York State in 1958. At age 15 her growing interest in the visual arts brought her to the Art Awareness program in the nearby town of Lexington, NY. It was a unique program that introduced Judy to art experiences that were uncommon in such a rural region. This influenced her decision to attend art school. She received her BFA in printmaking from State University of New York at New Paltz in 1980.
After college Judy received a grant to produce an artists’ book from Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, NY. Her experience also includes residencies at Art Park in Lewiston, NY; MacDowell Colony in Petersburg, NH; and Jentel Foundation, in Banner, WY. She has been using primarily found materials to make mixed media collage and sculpture for the past 20 years. In that time, Judy has also raised two sons who are now 18 and 20 years old.
Judy’s work has been in many solo and group exhibitions, including one group show, Recycle Reuse Recreate, that traveled to several countries in Africa in 1994. Her work also appears in two books, The Fine Art of the Tin Can by Bobby Hansson and Found Object Art by Dorothy Spencer, and in many exhibition catalogs. Many of Judy’s exhibitions have focused on her use of recycled content, including Recreation/Recreation: Noyes Museum in Oceanville, NJ; Relic Makers: Snyderman Works Gallery in Philidelphia, PA; and Found Objects Show: Images Friedman Gallery, Louisville, KY. Prominent museums including the Wustum Museum in Racine, WI (now called the Racine Art Museum), the Arkansas Art Center in Little Rock, AK and the Brooklyn Museum in Brooklyn, NY have also collected work by Judy.
In 1974 four women joined together to create the Women’s Studio Workshop, an artists’ workspace for shared equipment, materials and ideas outside of male-dominated academia.
What began as a studio in a house on James Street in Rosendale has grown to an international arts organization and the largest publisher of artists’ books in the country.
[Catskill Mountain Foundation] Thirty-one years later, female artists from around the world still believe in the idea: Each year, WSW hosts approximately 30 artists-in-residence, 150 summer students and eight full-time interns. These artists come from the local community and around the world to use the unique facilities in a supportive environment free from the stress and responsibilities of everyday life.
In the late 1970’s Judith Hoyt took an altered book class at the Women’s Studio Workshop. Taught by co-founder Barbara Leoff Burge, the course was Hoyt’s first experience with the Rosendale based not-for-profit. Students brought in existing books and, under Leoff Burge’s tutelage, altered them into unique artistic creations. In the early 1980’s Hoyt participated in Women Invent Gallery Spaces (WINGS) a program that created unique and interesting exhibition spaces for women artists. Through this program, Hoyt had her first post-college exhibition, showing her collages at the Sturbridge Lion, a Rosendale bar that no longer exists. The WINGS program also no longer exists because WSW has a permanent exhibition space at its Binnewater location that shows the works of grant recipients.
These experiences got Hoyt hooked, and she has remained actively involved by receiving a book grant from WSW, teaching Kingston elementary and high school students during art-in-education, and serving as a board member. In 1984, a printmaker not long out of school, she was awarded a grant to create A Domestic Bestiary, a small book of etchings depicting domestic animals such as chickens, goats, cows, and pigs. Through WSW’s artists book grant program, artists receive a stipend for materials, technical help, and studio space and housing to create the work. The Women’s Studio Workshop markets the limited edition books to libraries, universities and museums. Hoyt’s book is currently out of print, but, like all books published by WSW, can be viewed page by page on WSW’s online archive.
The kids, of course, are Hoyt’s favorite part of teaching during Art-in-Education. “It is fun to watch them with their little ideas, give them materials and watch them go,” she says. A national model for studio based arts education, WSW’s program invites 24 high school students and 25 to 30 fifth graders each year to learn and create at the workshop. Over the course of four or five weeks, each student has an opportunity to spend one full day in the papermaking, etching and silkscreen studios. The high school students work on portfolios for their advanced placement art class and for college applications. The elementary students combine their works in a final session and each creates a one-of-a-kind artists’ book. The different themes over the years have kept Hoyt interested. “The first year I taught we made boats from wood, Styrofoam and mixed media and floated them in the Rondout creek,” she says. “Another year we made luminaries.”
As an artist in a rural community, Hoyt believes that WSW provides a valuable service by bringing such high quality arts programming to the community. While Hoyt isn’t sure yet what she will be donating to the WSW auction, she does know why she is donating: “WSW focuses on two things the world needs,” she says, “women and art.”
Hoyt’s work was part of the Encaustic Works 2005 exhibition at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz. Also, she’s had a solo exhibition at the Works Gallery in Philadelphia.
Judy Hoyt has been a part of Women’s Studio Workshop almost from the very beginning.
Over the past 25 years Judy has worked in the studios as a resident, a teacher in our Art-In-Ed program, and has fearlessly volunteered for just about anything we have asked her to do.
Judy is a fabulous collagist scavenging the woods, roads, her friends’ attic as well as the occasional yard sale for old materials which she than transfer into unique, sensuous and tactile works of art. The past of others becomes intertwined with the present creating a seamless window into our times.