Whimsical, colorful, and hilarious are exactly what artist Ginger Wallace, Ogden native, is all about. From her too many fingered people, to her quirky titled paintings, she helps patrons recognize that life doesn’t always have to be so serious.
When first viewing Wallace’s paintings, one is struck by the beautiful use of color. She uses fluorescent colors and patterns in many of her sculptures and her paintings.
Many of the people in her artworks are seen wearing colorful clothing with eye-catching patterns. Somehow, this combination works. Her unique figures make people feel happy and remind them to “Not take the world so seriously,” as one attendee stated.
Ginger Wallace was born in Ogden, Utah in 1924. She is mostly known for her abstract and realistic-styled artwork.
She created her first painting in sixth grade which features what appears to be a clown riding a horse into the desert. In this painting, you can see that she’s always loved color, and you can see how she slowly progresses from thicker to tighter paint strokes, allowing her to paint more realistically. It’s titled “My love went without water.”
Her earliest paintings were more realistic than abstract. It wasn’t until the 1940’s, when abstract paintings became popular in New York, that she started painting in that particular style, which inspired her art greatly.
But, her biggest source of inspiration came from her parents. She was raised in a home where she was taught to believe “a daily dose of laughter was required for one to remain healthy.”
Her sense of humor is seen in her work and has viewers laughing with her from the beginning. For example, in one sculpture of hers, “The Tea Party,” word bubbles are placed around each figure, with expressions like “Did you try one of those weird purple things? They are delicious!”
One of her paintings shows a woman holding her jaw near a dentist. It is captioned, “Don’t worry, it generally, almost always, probably, will snap back into place. The Dental Associated has refused to comment about this.”
Her work keeps viewers laughing and curious to see what the next painting will be as they are walking through her gallery. It’s a unique experience getting to see so much of an artist’s personality and getting to fully understand her work. It’s like finally being in on the joke.
One woman who attended Wallace’s gallery and wished to remain anonymous, was asked, “If you could ask her (Wallace) one thing about her art, what would it be?”
Without hesitation, she said, “I wouldn’t ask her anything. I would want to have her over for dinner!” So, if ever you are in need of some laughter and a reminder to not take the world so seriously, head over to the Kimball Arts Building and have a laugh with Ginger Wallace.