Photographer & Mixed Media Artist
Dawn Willis studied photography, painting and printmaking at New York City’s School of Visual Arts. Although her early published work involved celebrity photographs, she has for many years focused on our immediate surroundings.
Her photography is notable for its unusual subject matter, strong sense of composition and the vivid, heavily saturated colors that blur the distinction between object and abstraction.
A self-proclaimed Polaroid Junkie, Ms. Willis also enjoys the various Polaroid processes, including Instant Image Transfers and photographs using the Polaroid SX-70 camera, which produces images that can be manipulated.
In addition to photography, her recent work has focused on using various mixed media techniques to create large abstract pieces, as well as pieces using cabochons, lace, found objects, and Steampunk cogs and gears.
From 2012 to 2015 Ms. Willis served as Art Curator for the Town of Southeast Cultural Arts Coalition’s Studio Around the Corner in Brewster, NY. She also has held the position of Director of the Studio’s Visual Arts Committee. Ms. Willis is on the Putnam Arts Council’s Board of Trustees, as well as, a member of the Visual Arts Gallery Committee. Along with Executive Director & President of PAC, Joyce Picone, Dawn created CONNECT: a forum for visual artists.
In addition to being in private collections, her work has been exhibited at the Putnam Arts Council where she was the Featured Artist for over a year and a half along with a large mixed media piece in PAC’s foyer, Arts on The Lake, the Front Street Gallery’s Summer Invitational Exhibit 2016, Kine Buddies, the now defunct G.A.S. Gallery in Poughkeepsie, NY, and the Brewster Library. Before being named Art Curator, her work was exhibited in a solo show, ‘The Edgy Side of Life“, as well as group shows at Studio Around the Corner.
“Although much of my recent work is mixed media most of my early work, which I continue to do today, is photography.
“Unlike many artists, my desire is for the viewer to see what they see in my work, rather than dictate what I believe they should see.