Rosemarie Bloch was born and raised in Cincinnati Ohio. After graduating from the Art Academy of Cincinnati, she married an Army officer, and, moving 14 times in 12 years, lived in North Carolina, California, Georgia, New Jersey, Germany and Massachusetts. The family finally settled back in Cincinnati for several years, before moving to nearby Okeana, OH.
Rosemarie drew and painted from early childhood. She received training in all mediums in high school under the tutelage of a talented nun. She won a scholarship to the Art Academy of Cincinnati. Among her instructors there was Julian Stanczak, a prominent Op artist. “He taught me about color. I also remember passing his studio at the school, and hearing Bach, which he listened to while he painted. I also discovered that my creativity is enhanced if music is playing while I work.”
“I have nearly always been out of step with the artistic movement du jour, favoring representational work in my art school years when abstract expressionism was the rage, and then later when “realism” became really popular, I gradually discovered what abstraction is all about.” Over the years her investigations have led to an obsession with the grid that humans impose on the natural world.
“The grid is prevalent in America. This was impressed on me during a trip across Iowa in the 60’s. Drive east a mile, then make a right angle turn south. Drive another mile south; make another right angle turn east, for miles and miles this pattern was repeated.”
Later she saw the pattern from the air over many areas of the country. And of course, the neighborhood she grew up in featured the gridded streets typical of cities, a north south – east west layout. Curving streets are now seen more often, but most buildings are still a grid of rooms. Then there were the years she worked as a computer programmer – in a “cube farm” of course.
She has extended the grid to 3 dimensions, with canvases mounted onto other canvases. These are then painted with a grid, but some organic elements fight back for nature. “I like to garden, and that intensifies my deconstruction of the grid. Nothing is less interesting in a garden than regimental rows of flowers.”
Rosemarie also played the piano from about age 6 and later learned classical guitar. Music is another kind of grid, and serves as an entry point to many paintings for her. She believes art of all kinds is a basic human drive that is expressed in multiple mediums, from architecture to zydeco, either by making it or witnessing it. “It all comes from the same urge to communicate.”
She mentored with Steve Perucca at the Middletown arts center, where she is now an instructor. She was a signature member of the Cincinnati Art Club, served on the Alumni board of the Art Academy of Cincinnati, and has won many awards for her art over the years.
I am fascinated by the grid that humans impose on the natural world. I feel that the grid is my way of trying to control the 24/7 chaos of the world we live in. The grid developed after the improvisational pieces shown here.
I always have a reference to my feelings about the natural world in my mind. I associate certain pieces of music with some paintings. I like making accidental drips and then organizing them.
I continue to work in series of several paintings on a general theme to develop and explore all possibilities. The most recent series uses hexagon shaped canvases, as well as other shapes. Some of these also have muted color schemes, with grey predominating.