After decades along both of the nation’s coasts, renowned artist Dina Herrmann has settled in Montezuma County and is bringing her work to Mancos in a few weeks.
Herrmann is primarily an oil painter, working for many years in upstate New York and recently in Los Angeles. She grew tired of the city bustle, though, and has now set up a studio in Dove Creek.
“I’m very happy, I’m very at home here,” she said.
Some of her bright chakra-inspired works will grace the walls at the Olio restaurant and art gallery starting Oct. 12.
Herrmann grew up in the New York art world. Her parents were both fashion illustrators for Lord & Taylor, and she followed in their footsteps.
“That’s all I knew, that’s all I grew up with, in Manhattan,” she said.
After college and art school, she moved to upstate New York, painting in a “country house” for 35 years, she said.
But when her father died and her mother acquired Alzheimer’s disease, she decided it was time to leave.
“I had to move, and so I thought LA would be great,” Herrmann said.
She lived in LA for five years, but found it painful to witness the suffering and grime of city life, she said. She met Cody Lyon, the manager of Buffalo Woman Ranch, who admired Herrmann’s work and encouraged her to come out to Colorado.
So earlier this year, she uprooted from Southern California and moved to Dove Creek, where she hopes to paint and get involved with the equine therapy practices at Buffalo Woman Ranch, as she also has a background in therapy.
The paintings coming to Olio are the last in a chakra series, inspired by her own therapy work and seminars she attended on body work and healing. The idea of chakras has origins in early Hinduism and has now made its way into modern yoga and meditation practices; they are energy centers responsible for various physical and emotional states of being.
People gain new chakras as they grow older and mature, which can throw bodies and souls into disarray, Herrmann said.
“We’re all unbalanced, because as we grow up, different things affect us, and the chakras get all imbalanced,” she said.
She captures them in different ways, she said. Each chakra has a symbol – like a heart or triangle or circle – which she tries to incorporate into her work. At first she took a very geometric approach, seen in one of the paintings on display in the Olio show.
“But the others are very abstract, and they just have colors that I blended altogether,” Herrmann said. “The different layers with the seven chakras, kind of go vertical up the canvas.”
She’s working now on some smaller oil paintings to fill the walls at the restaurant gallery.