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Local Artist 

Kathy Sperl-Bell

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About Kathy

I paint with acrylics and some collage. I enjoy layering and creating depth of color, and I often start with the background before deciding on the subject. Now that I am retired and living in Key Largo, I have the time to explore art for the first time.


My inspiration

I began painting in my 70s, inspired by my dear friend and artist, Becky Steele, Becky Steel Artist in Little River, SC. Two of her paintings hang in my home, and I love her use of color and the intensity of her brush strokes. Another artist whose work I have collected is Eunice LaFate, Folk Artist & Educator, and owner of LaFate Gallery in Wilmington, Delaware. I have always gravitated to artists but never thought I would become an artist myself.

Living in the Florida Keys, I am surrounded by the beauty and amazing color of the tropics. But what I enjoy painting most is inspired by my early years in New York City. I was fortunate to live there in the late 60s and early 70s when you could still see top-name jazz performers in small clubs throughout the city. Great music was everywhere, from the Village Gate and the Village Vanguard in Greenwich Village to Smalls up in Harlem.

I remember seeing the Modern Jazz Quartet at the Rainbow Grill in Rockefeller Center when I was 19. Later, I saw them perform at the Village Vanguard and a small club in Piccadilly in London, England. Other great jazz musicians I saw live included Quincy Jones, Milt Jackson, Grover Washington, Dave Brubeck and his sons, Miles Davis, Wynton Marsalis, and many others.

In later years, I have enjoyed Jazz Festivals from Newport, Rhode Island, to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.


Kathy Sperl-Bell

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