Zoneone Arts Nancy Newman-Rice Article By Deborah Blakeley

Zoneone Arts brings Nancy Newman Rice to you…  Nancy Newmen-Rice

How did your residency to Paris after completing your MFA propel your art?

My residency in Paris happened 39 years after I received my MFA. Shortly after graduate school, I began teaching I at a city community college, St. Louis Community College, Forest Park, and an ex-urban university, Maryville University. The latter would offer me a full-time tenure track position. My husband was also in the early stages of his academic career and we had one young child, soon to be followed by another. Leaving home to participate in a residency was impossible, thus I waited until I took early retirement in order to not only paint full-time and also have the freedom to travel.

Paris, a city like no other, has served as a subject and refuge for artists not only because it is beautiful but also because there is an aesthetic energy that seems to drive and effect he entire atmosphere.  The essence of my application to La Cité des Beaux Arts in Paris, stated that my primary reason for wanting to live and work in Paris was to increase my collection of architectural imagery and experiences, by means of annotated drawings and photographs of the built environment. My days there, alternated with multiple visits to museums, cathedrals, churches and significant buildings, where I drew, when possible, or quickly photographed, and work in my studio. I collected images of windows, parquet floors, gothic cathedrals, (inside and out), and fantastic staircases. The spiral staircase in the Palais de Tokyo, which was at that time, a somewhat rundown cement commercial structure with countless of installation art opportunities. This staircase became an important element in my Ash Wednesday series, which was based on T.S.Eliot’s poem of the same name. The rhythm of the poem is one of climbing a spiral staircase each step a with reference to Catholic liturgy.

Your work has been represented by many commercial galleries in the USA, are there any collectors that standout?

I am fortunate in that I have been represented by commercial galleries, which have regularly exhibited my work. When my work was less complex, I was more prolific and able to have work exhibited in galleries around the US. Presently, my primary gallery, Duane Reed Gallery, exhibits my work in St. Louis and at international art fairs. Walter Wickiser Gallery represents my work in NYC.

What lead you to architectural landscape painting? 

The simplest answer to the question, “why architecture?” it is my fascination with the geometry of the visible world and how we mortals have created our own geometric spaces in which to live, worship, learn etc.

I have lived in a city most of life and when I travel, I spend much of my time in cities, remembering events and where they took place is significant, and always involves a specific building and all the architectural elements that define its shape and interior space. My paintings are an amalgamation of those memories.

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Purchase “Fragile Memories” in Paperback & Hardback

Fragile Memories, by Nancy Newman Rice, is a collection of reproductions of paintings preceded by commentaries on the origin of my subject matter. The book is autobiographical in nature as my subjects come from dreams and experiences.

Paperback: 46 pages
Hardback: 46 pages
Publisher: Blurb (2008)
ISBN-10: 1320010504
ISBN-13: 978-1320010504

Purchase “Fragile Memories” at

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Kensington Symphony Orchestra Inspired By “Sacred Space”

“Sacred Space was inspired by a dramatic painting (Sacred Space 2010) by the noted American painter Nancy Newman Rice. When I first saw the painting I was instantly riveted by it. I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I absolutely had to compose a narrative piece of music about this painting. It is a musical composition of spiritual light and renewal represented by the magical and mysterious renovation of a dilapidated cathedral.”

Live Performance With Composer’s Intro

Mark Narins Conductor, Kensington Symphony Orchestra, June 7, 2014

Program for the composition
4 AM. The Cathedral is totally empty, no pews, moonlight shines through the non-existent roof. It is cold and damp. Mist blankets the floor.

Rats, mice and insects wake up and scurry about. (Bass clarinet and bassoon).
Moonlight reflects off the Cathedral floor (the sound of the vibraphone)

Wind blows through the church forming dust devils that traverse the floor. (Fast triplet figures in the woodwinds).

Dawn breaks. Shafts of sunlight begin to come through the missing roof – represented by unrelated major chords in the wind instruments

An invisible pipe organ begins to play (Trumpets and Trombones)

The floor begins to vibrate ominously. Rolling notes in the timpani, bass drum, tremolos in the cellos and basses.
The invisible organ is heard briefly

The whole church shakes violently and EXPLODES!

The first vertical post of the scaffolding bursts through the floor, represented by the descending sliding in the whole orchestra (Orchestral glissando). Horizontal pieces are represented by the ascending and descending chromatic scales. The cathedral fills with scaffolding.

The brick arch floats to the top of the church (broad choral theme in the strings and organ). Sunlight streams into the cathedral. The walls repaint themselves. Purple ribbons adorn the balcony. GOD returns to the cathedral.

Looking dazed and confused an angel (the solo viola) appears on the floor of the cathedral. She rises slowly to the ceiling looking down on the splendor of the re-consecrated cathedral.

The choral theme breaks forth again with such force that the whole cathedral lifts off its foundations. The church shakes so violently that it begins to disintegrate.

The church walls dissolve, collapse and disappear completely.

All that is left is the angel fluttering its wings, hovering in a totally blue universe.

· Where are we? Perhaps heaven!

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