Penelope Harris, Blue Beads
Active and alive, complex and meticulously detailed, Penelope Harris's Blue Beads contains a visual explosion of color and movement. The equilibrium of the composition reflects her interest in the symmetry found in early Italian Renaissance and Flemish paintings. This painting was first exhibited at Prince Street Gallery in New York, and was also included in the first survey exhibition of paintings and gouaches by Harris held at Woodmere September 16–November 18, 2001.
Born in New York City, Penelope Harris is the daughter of realist painters Audrey Buller and Lloyd Parsons. Harris moved to Chestnut Hill in 1969 when her husband decided to return to his native Philadelphia. It was not until she lived here that she began to paint, enrolling in Woodmere's art classes. Encouraged by her success she entered a certificate program at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1974.
Listen to Pamela Birmingham, Woodmere's former Curator of Education, talk about the mind-bending properties of this work.