Community Sketchbook

Sunday, October 17, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 12:45 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 20, 2008

TITLE: Full Bodied Red

ARTIST: Rita Orr

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Rita Orr pulls special inks across a stencil on a silk screen to produce her unique and colorful prints. By using multiple colors, she creates an image rich and vibrant in its appeal.

Although she has done silk screen printmaking for more than 30 years, it was batik — a process of creating art by using wax and dye — that led her to her current passion.

“I needed to do more shows, and I had to find a process that was faster but produced the same results,” she said.

Orr makes all of her work at her studio in Osage Beach in the Lake of the Ozarks. She works at the studio three to four times per week and produces about five editions each year.

Most of her pieces are sold in art galleries and shows across the Midwest. Her work is displayed at A La Campagne at 916 E. Broadway. Prices range from $35 to $800.

When she is not creating silk screen prints, Orr enjoys gardening. But finding an opportunity to squeeze another activity into her schedule is rare.

“With doing PR, applying to shows and actually creating, I have little time to do anything else,” she said. “But this is definitely my passion. If I don’t get to work for a period of time, I get grumpy!”

ABOUT THE WORK: Full Bodied Red is a 10-by-6-foot silk screen print that features a framed woman with voluminous red hair enjoying a glass of red wine. This piece took Orr about two weeks to produce and is one of her more recent developments. It is part of a collection she is currently working on that features a series of mostly female figures enjoying their free time.

“I like to take people who are characters and who say a lot about society and incorporate them in my art,” Orr said.

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