Monthly Artist Showcase- HELEN ZARIN


Spirit CC

Zarin – The name instinctively provokes the imagination with the mystery of antiquity, of an illustrious by-gone age. Zarin’s paintings coerce the viewer to engage her works and command one’s attention.  The swaths of bold colors tempestuously sweeping across each canvas coalesce in the finality of her penultimate and ultimate brush strokes into work of compelling sophistication. Zarin hails from the ancient metropolis of Shiraz, Persia, which is home to poets, writers, architects, gardens, world famous pistachios, and the internationally acclaimed Shiraz red win grape, which has been transplanted into the world’s most famous vineyards.  Zarin’s varied influences of her native land inspire canvases with a cacophony of color, but with a distinct focus in mind.

Untitled        It is a difficult and fine line to walk delving into impressionistic and abstract elements flavored with intellectual concepts of music, dance, literature, history, landscapes, and interiors.  Zarin fearlessly treads into these realms  without trepidation and exults in the struggle. Emotional concepts of love, intimacy, joy, angst, detachment, solitude, and indifference all exist on Zarin’s palette that she masterfully pours onto her canvases.  The viewer is left intellectually and emotionally drained with this confrontation. Growing up as an Orthodox Jew in a Muslin land of Sharia Law presents its own set of challenges to Zarin.

LAMOUR XXXIVMuslim Koranic morality bans alcohol in all its forms as “hiram” (evil, sin).  Just as the revered centuries old Shiraz grape stands in opposition to the prevailing culture in its venerable, unchanged, primordial state, Zarin emulates its tenacity and conviction to exist and prosper.  Both have survived the cultural conflict in Shiraz to be, to blossom, to advance.  Both are a testament to the enduring transcendence of distinction. Zarin shares her novel artistic vision to the world despite all odds.

Conditions in her native country eventually compelled Helen to turn elsewhere for creative nourishment. “Hard work and talent are not enough for an artist to progress and blossom, creative freedom in the right atmosphere is essential,” she remarked. In the pursuit of these artistic prerequisites, she journeyed first to Europe where she displayed her works in Vienna before coming to the United States in 1993. She has continued her education first in New York and currently in Baltimore, Maryland where she resides.

We would like to welcome the NEW face of Broadway Gallery!


From the small town of Sneads Ferry, North Carolina, Kathryn Harvey went on to attend James Madison University. She graduated with a Bachelors degree in Art History and a minor in Studio Art.

During her time at James Madison University, Kathryn worked her way from a gallery intern in Sawhill Gallery to director of the campus’s prestigious Lisanby Museum. After graduation, Kathryn worked as an Assistant Manager and Director of Barrel Oak Winery’s Tasting Room and Art Gallery. There she was able to meet, contract and exhibit many local artists. After grasping the workings of a gallery, Kathryn went on to gain small business development experience working as an Office Manager, Assistant to Director of Marketing and Trade Show Registrar at America’s Small Business Development Center.

Today, Kathryn attends George Mason University and is achieving her Master’s in Art Management while working as Gallery Manager of Broadway Gallery. She brings a smiling face and great experience of the art world that will help us in reaching our full potential.

Keep checking our blog for more about upcoming events, framing workshop highlights and other weekly updates!

The Broadway Family

Getting to know the Incredible Michael Godfrey!

Michael Godfrey is a talented and imaginary landscape artist whose work can be seen in in numerous private and corporate collections. Godfrey was born in Germany in l958 and raised in North Carolina; he earned a BFA in Fine Arts and began his painting career in oils and watercolors.

Portrait of Michael Godfrey

Portrait of Michael Godfrey

 Currently Godfrey spends hours field sketching and photographing, preparing for a well thought out painting. Godfrey’s desire is that his paintings “reflect the wonder of God’s creation.”

Typically, Godfrey starts a major work using small oil studies done on location. These field studies allow for color accuracy and the photographs provide special details. In the studio his work progresses in successive layers of paint and light which is orchestrated to create a painting that appeals to his internal sense of order.

Godfrey and his wife at El Prado fine art

Godfrey and his wife at El Prado fine art`

A landscape artist has to have knowledge of many disciplines (geology, chemistry, physics, architecture), to understand the world in which they are trying to create. An artist must observe with the idea that what is observed must be interpreted and distilled. For a landscape artist, it is just as important what is not included in a work as what is eventually laid down. Godfrey asks himself, “what is the dominant truth – is it color, shape of land forms, or time of day”. He tries to understand what he is seeing, so that the final work will capture the visual emotion.

Godrey's Dusk at Shell Beach

Godrey’s Dusk at Shell Beach

Godfrey’s work has been in a variety of publications such as the book Art from the Parks; From Sea to Shining Sea, and magazines Southwest Art, Art of the West, Western Art Collector, and more. He has also received several art awards; the most recent include the 2010 Best in Show American Art Invitational in Denver, Colorado and the 2010 Best in Show at the Rocky Mountains Plein Air Painters.

Has Godfrey inspired you to do some of your own painting? He has for me!

Broadway Galleries

What Inspires Artwork?

 When I walk into a museum or a gallery such as Broadway Galleries and I see all the beautiful artwork I am always in awe of the talent I see. I also  get curious about how the artist came up with such an idea or perspective and it made me dig around for some answers, where does the inspiration come from?

Willis Wharf Fisherman by Ken Strong

Willis Wharf Fisherman by Ken Strong

  When looking for an answer, I realized the world we live in is full of life and beauty which is a great source of inspiration. Being outdoors is a great place to find something new, whether you get a city scene of bustling people, buildings, or even rustic landscapes. Many people go to cities or the countryside and bring a camera along to capture the image and bring it back to the studio.

A John Bannon piece

A John Bannon piece

Other artists can be inspired by their emotions. This can be referenced by Picasso’s ‘blue period’ where he was depressed and did a series all in dark and somber blue tones. Emotions can bring about new ideas and help shape the overall mood of a piece of artwork. If you are happy, you might be inspired to do something in bright and lively colors. Many pieces of dark and menacing artwork are created out of feelings of anger.

Beatty's Revelation of the Heart 2

Beatty’s Revelation of the Heart 2

Dreams! Dreams are another great source of inspiration for artists. When we sleep, our subconscious if free to wander and indulge it its own creativity. Dreams have been an inspiration for art for centuries. Dreams have been referenced as far back as the stories of Gilgamesh and the Iliad. Salvador Dali was influenced by dreams. Since we often forget what we dream, a good habit for artists is to sleep with a pen and pad of paper next to the bed.

A whole other area of inspiration is music, which can inspire an artist just as easily as a picture. Music creates a mood and is closely tied with using emotions in art. Just about all artists have a stereo of some mind in their studio to listen to music. When you are searching for idea for your next piece, put on some music that you like that is appropriate for getting in the right frame of mind.

Sokol-Hohne Abstract piece

Sokol-Hohne Abstract piece

Hanging out with and talking shop with other artists is a valuable way to bounce ideas back and forth. Not every artist thinks alike, after all. It is highly likely that one of your peers may have a different idea than you. Many artists are very supportive of others in their community and are more than happy to give (and receive) advice. Go to gallery openings and talk with other artists. Hang out in their studio and see what they have been working on. There are also online art communities where you can chat or post topics in forums. These sites can be tremendously useful to an artist, especially if they do not live near an art community.

Art can inspire something gorgeous like this!

Art can inspire something gorgeous like this!

Media in its different forms can be just as inspirational as real life. Often artists get ideas for a new piece by watching movies or reading books. Subject matter can vary widely and it really depends on the interests of the artist. You might be inspired by a work of pure fiction or you might like historical or biographical material.

One of the biggest sources of inspiration for artists is the works by other artists. Many artists trying to find a new idea will look at samples and portfolios of others to see how they approached an idea. You can do this by going to a gallery and looking at the pieces of art being displayed. There are galleries with everything from the works by the old masters to modern and contemporary artists. In other words, there is something for everyone.

Another way to find inspiration is to try to do something new and different. If you have been working in the same style or the same subject matter for awhile, change it up. Copy someone else’s style or just go in the opposite direction from what you normally do. If you mostly draw, try painting. If you paint, try sculpture. Switch out realism for impressionism and vice versa. By trying something new, it can make you think in a different direction.

Carry a sketchbook or a camera; you never know when inspiration may strike. You may discover something by accident one day or pass something on the street. An image may just pop into your head. Always try to keep some pen and paper nearby to jot down these ideas!

Amore by Shojaei

Amore by Shojaei

I would have to agree with these findings that being outside in nature gives me a boost of creativity, especially when it is summer!  Tell us, what inspires you?

Broadway Galleries