For local artist and bespoke floral designer, Danis Morgan, art and nature are intertwined. Whether she’s creating her art through paintings, photographs, interior design or floral artistry and garden curation through her business, Danis Rose Floral, the natural world and its offerings heavily influence her creations.
Danis grew up in Alaska, where she spent time exploring her grandparents’ homestead, gathering crabapple branches and wild roses and flowers to create small bouquets as gifts for her grandmother. Living in an open and wild landscape exposed her to the untamed beauty that would become the backbone of her art and floral design. She moved to Bainbridge Island her senior year of high school and after graduation from BHS, she went on to attend Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle to study interior design. After college, Danis worked as a designer at NBBJ in Seattle before moving to Southern California. However, life on Bainbridge is difficult to resist and she’s lived here on and off for the last 24 years, finally settling here for good in 2015 with her three kids and her father, who lives close by.
While creating spectacular floral designs is a new adventure for Danis, painting is her true passion. Fine art painting has been her primary profession for more than 30 years, and she enjoys collaborating with other artists to find ways to bring art into her life and cultivate a successful career as an artist, which included an artist fellowship in Larroque Saint Sernin at La Vielle Ferme Nautucat, France. “Art permeates everything I see and do. I live my life as a creative and an artist…connecting cooking, design, art and flora with a golden thread of intention, magic and mystery. They are all woven together into the poem that is my life,” she said.
Danis uses three different mediums and techniques for her paintings depending on what collection she is working on. “Encaustic is a 5000-year-old medium incorporating beeswax and tree resin. Often times I add graphite pencil drawings and oil paint to this which brings out the translucent layers and texture from the beeswax,” she explained. She also uses mineral pigments in a water based medium from another ancient painting technique/medium called Japanese Nihonga. “It is a long process of mixing pigments with a glue that I make which is then heated to bring out the luminous quality of the minerals…making the paint with white crushed shell is a meditation in itself.” Over the last several years, she’s also been making her own paint from walnut oil, mineral pigments from France and sometimes cold wax. “I am drawn to things in the life that are authentic and pure, natural.”
All of these practices culminate in intricate and elegant paintings inspired by the everchanging natural world. “The connection to the wild nature I grew up with continues to inform me to see and paint abstract expressive landscapes and abstract botanical flora. Also learning to use all my senses outdoors and to notice my surroundings has always stayed with me. I’m inspired by the fleeting moments of awe and wonder in nature, allowing me to create art that captures its natural grace and beauty.”
Although Danis has had her work exhibited locally and afar at galleries such as Bainbridge Arts & Crafts, the Bainbridge Island Studio Tour, Perry & Carlson Gallery in Skagit, WA, and SCAPE Gallery in Corona del Mar, CA (where she is currently represented), she is especially excited and honored to be part of the upcoming BIMA Spotlight.
The Bainbridge Island Museum of Art’s BIMA Spotlight, is their first-ever juried group exhibition. Their six jurors reviewed roughly 3,400 works of art, which were entered by 606 artists from the Puget Sound region.
The result is a diverse salon-style show, filling the majority of BIMA’s two gallery floors. BIMA Spotlight is part of BIMA’s 10th Anniversary celebration. Spotlight was not juried along certain themes or art genres; however, several have emerged. These include environmental concerns, social justice issues, art from recycled and repurposed materials, installation work, landscapes, portraiture, and abstract art. Diverse media include: painting; printmaking; photography; sculpture in metal, wood, ceramic, glass, and mixed media; artists’ books; fiber art and textiles; and jewelry art. – BIMA
The BIMA Spotlight runs from June 30 through September 10, 2023.
Danis will be exhibiting two pieces at Spotlight. The first, called “Reflection” is from a limited collection of photographs with encaustic that she took from the pond near the meadow at Bloedel Reserve, and inspired by her love of water. “One spring day I captured the rain dripping from the leaves of the trees above the pond, it is a landscape and also an abstract reflection on water.”
The second, is a fluid and organic piece, called “Petal”, which is an abstract diptych painting of mineral pigments and indigo on linen.
Danis is currently working on a new collection of encaustic work, see below for a sneak peek.
About Danis Rose Floral – “Floral artistry and garden curation is, at its best, natural, intuitive, regional, and grounded in seasonal offerings. These qualities guide me as I bring my artistry to my clients’ gardens and homes. I curate and implement floral and food garden designs and make arrangements and provide table styling services using an array of seasonal flora from herbs, fruiting branches and roses for small private or home-based events. I look forward to bringing the magic I have gathered into Danis Rose Floral to elevate your home.” To learn more, visit her website at Danis Rose Floral (danismorgan.com)
Danis’s work is collected on the west coast and France. You can follow her on Instagram @danis_morgan_fine_art, or visit her website at DanisMorgan.com
*Photo/image credit: Danis Morgan