A nation of sheep

One of the paintings in Carolyn Letvin's  show "Am I Dreaming,'' at Galatea Fine Art, through March 27. She told the gallery:

"I've been painting Jacob sheep for 14 years. When I began, I had no idea that they would engage me as a visual subject for such a long time! As when I started painting them, I still get a charge from the results of the combination of my hand, the medium and the subject. One of the things that has evolved through the making of them is that I've pretty much eliminated any identifiable background. I think the flat color background accentuates the negative space of the composition. To me, composition is, as with any piece of art, the most important element in the painting. No matter how well the picture is painted, if the composition is lacking, the piece will not be successful.


Sheep are often one of the first images we see in our lives. Think of all the nursery rhymes and children's stories that involve or are about sheep. In my case, one of my very first memories is of painted wooden cut-outs of Little Bo Peep and her sheep that my mother had hanging above my crib. I can envision that room and how the "art" was hung to this day.