Tuesday, October 2, 2012

WHITE RIVER JUNCTION: Sheryl Trainor's Prints at Two Rivers

Two Rivers Printmaking Studio
Through September 2012

[Editor's Note: Sheryl Trainor's work can be seen at through October 8, 2012. Please see details after the story below.]

Sheryl Trainor's Print Show at Two Rivers
by Helen Shulman

Horses speak to Sheryl Trainor – and Sheryl Trainor’s prints speak to us.

When Wishes Were Horses

In this exhibition,  Sheryl uses imagery of horses and humans to tell stories and to create warm, inviting, and/or edgy scenes, depending upon the history and mood of the viewer. In When Wishes Were Horses, Sheryl presents the silhouette of a powerful horse responding willingly to a small girl sitting comfortably in the saddle. The drama of the disparity between the sizes of the two figures and their obvious connection is arresting.


In Tandem, a couple rides together on a horse that seems better suited to their sizes. Questions about the evolution of the little girl’s life are raised.

To create this body of work, Sheryl used a printmaking technique called collagraph, which comes from the French, “coller” meaning “to Glue.” She builds up the plate to create textures. She also incises and presses textures into a mat-board substrate to add variety to the surface. Mylar stencils provide the figurative elements that can be places in a variety of background environments.

Dance Hall Days

The prints which feature human figures, provoke speculation and prod distant memories. Dance Hall Days shows the silhouette of a couple whose attire is reminiscent of the late 40's or early 50's. They stand in front of a background, which recalls the stylized d├ęcor that Americans, of that era, thought of as Japanese. It carries with it sounds of the big bands, sights of GI's and pretty girls, the smell of Lucky Strikes. In Just Between Us, Sheryl continues her work with silhouettes.A man in a suit, probably the father, stands with his hand on the shoulder of a little girl, probably the daughter. They gaze over an abstracted landscape formed of subtle greys, browns and blues. A grid-like structure of what appears to be bunched and broken netting is superimposed. It's easy to find associations flowing freely.

When Sheryl’s father died, nearly three years ago, she began poring through his books, magazines, letters and memorabilia. She also had collections of diaries, newspaper clippings, and letters saved from ancestors who lived in the early 1900’s.Her current work is being strongly influenced by these documents. Sheryl has the fortunate ability to take details from her life and history and make them pertinent to her viewers. She’s fascinated with what’s she learning about her personal past. I’m looking forward to seeing how she’ll use that to speak to us.


Her work was recently part of a two-person show at Two Rivers Printmaking Studio. Sheryl Trainor's work can be seen in Waitsfield, Vt., at the Art in the Round Barn, through October 8, 2012, daily from 9:30am until 5pm* (*Closed at 2:30pm on Oct 6, 2012)

1661 East Warren Road 
Waitsfield, Vt.