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The HeARTists

Meet three of the artists from Heartbeat of Folsom

This summer, the Heartbeat of Folsom comes to life in a city-wide Community Art Exhibit, thanks to the work of Leadership Folsom (a program of the Folsom Chamber of Commerce / Choose Folsom), along with 20 local businesses that have sponsored a heart sculpture, and a team of local artists.  Residents and visitors can enjoy 21 hand-painted and decorated heart sculptures, each an original work of art.  They celebrate themes on what makes Folsom special, from its unique history to its Distinctive by Nature beauty.  Each heart has been designed and painted by a local artist with their own vision.  Here, in their own words, are the stories from three of them.

Tina Petersen:  “Life in Folsom”

What is your approach to your art?

I create original colorful abstracts, beautiful landscapes and figurative/narrative paintings.  I love simple moments and am inspired by life, color, light, texture and movement.  I like to say that choosing a piece of art is like falling in love – when it’s right, you just know it.

What was your inspiration for Heartbeat of Folsom?

My inspiration for Heartbeat of Folsom was the phrase, 'adding life to your years.'   It was a suggestion from the Heart sponsor, AKT.  As soon as I heard it, the creative process started and I was off and running.  There is so much to love about our city and living in Folsom.  We have beautiful Folsom Lake, the surrounding hills with houses tucked into them, and of course, my absolute favorite part of living in Folsom, is the clouds.  Being so close to the foothills and the Sierras, we see tall storm clouds, big fluffy white cumulus clouds, and so many amazing colors in our clouds and sky as the sun rises and sets.

Nirmal Mangalvedhekar:  “Blossom Bliss”

What is your approach to your art?

Painting is an outburst of my emotions.  For me, it’s the most comforting and therapeutic activity as is spending time focused on the subject I paint.

What was your inspiration for Heartbeat of Folsom?

'Blossom Bliss' is inspired by the delicate beauty of the wildflowers and the graceful fluttering of the butterflies among them.  The vibrant colors and intricate details capture the essence and glory of nature.  The butterfly in this sculpture symbolizes the beauty and power of transformation.  Like a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly, we too can transform and grow in our own lives.  The wildflowers and butterflies remind us that change is natural and necessary, and that transformation can lead to new opportunities and growth.

Ashley Ragan:  “Find Me at the Farmers’ Market”

What is your approach to your art?

I focus on movement, color, and intuitive flow.  I tend to gravitate to the more abstract, to challenge the viewer to discover the feeling brought on from observing the art.  With this project, I wanted to step out of my comfort zone to make something more playful and realistic.  

What was your inspiration for Heartbeat of Folsom?

I was inspired by our CEO at BRMS who shared his passion for the weekly adventure to the Farmers’ Market.  I wanted to honor the farmers, families, patrons, and vendors that spend their lives enjoying their crafts, laughs, and the ever-present history that makes Folsom so appealing.  Upon completion, my sculpture will act as an eye-spy game that highlights icons representing the unique experiences offered inside our historic and beautiful city.

The Heartbeat of Folsom is an art installation that celebrates all that we love about our great city while raising funds to improve the lives of the underserved in our community. To see all 21 hearts, visit Heartbeatoffolsom.com and download the free Heart Map.

"I utilize art as an emotional expression - a mechanism for transforming the spectrum of emotions into concrete bodies of work."

-Ashley Ragan

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