Big Basin Vineyards Tasting Room and Wine Bar – Susanna Waddell

525 Pacific Ave
Santa Cruz, 95060
First Friday Artist Image
5:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Full run of show Dec 1, 2022 - Jan 2, 2023

Featured Artist Susanna Waddell

I am lucky to be living my life as an artist these days. While I was always dreaming of being an artist and "piddling" with it throughout my life I chose shelter, sustenance and security after graduate school. My creative life was often secretive, especially from my Art Center Director mother. I did choose theater arts for many years, which pleased her and was a successful outlet. However, as I began to look forward to retirement in 2000 I knew I needed to begin a life chapter for which I had been longing, and so my life as a painter began.

I enjoyed oil painting for years particularly en plein aire. In 2007 my quest for "anything art" took an important turn when the Waxworks West School in Corralitos and their talented teachers Wendy Aikin, Judy Stabile, and Daniella Woolf introduced me to encaustic painting. Wax has become my medium. It nurtures, excites and compels me to paint as much as possible. The luminosity it provides launches a new dynamic that is both playful and experimental. I never tire of the surprise element of the process. The process of painting with molten wax and fusing with a blowtorch or iron is absolutely sensor, visual, olfactory and kinesthetic all happening at once. The organic nature of encaustic painting is also attractive to me. Beeswax comes from bees, damar resin drips out of pine trees, pigments are mostly organic and substrates are made of natural wood all converge to the making of these pieces. Encaustic is not a new medium. There are examples of encaustic paintings dating back to the 6th century. The word "encaustic" comes from the Greek word encaustikos, which means, "to burn in". The "burning in" or fusing is important to the process of creating this type of painting.

I believe that being an active part of the art community is an indispensable part of tending to my creative life. I volunteer, curate shows and actively support this community of artists and in doing so it keeps me plugged in and grounded. I am currently published in American Art Collector and Studio Visit Books.

Aptos Studio visits by appointment only at: 9083 Soquel Drive, Suite #1 & 2, Aptos, CA 95003

Doing art is like running away without leaving home
—Twyla Tharp


Photography by Bradley Brown

On permanent exhibit at the tasting room, are photographs by founder and owner Bradley Brown. Bradley's father who worked at Kodak and grandfather who was an avid photographer helped get him interested in photography at a young age. The exhibit in the Tasting Room and Wine Bar includes recent images printed on metal which include Drone shots of vineyards, shots taken in Big Basin Redwoods State Park as well as Santa Cruz beach images.

We'll be serving our fabulous Big Basin Vineyards wines and lovely food pairings all evening. Come Early, Stay late! Cozy up to a warm fire-pit on our patio and enjoy! Open 4pm-9pm

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