Annie Haslam: Renaissance Woman The Sound and Colors of Love, Light and Peace It is very exciting to be able to share my new love — oil painting — with you. Color and sound are one and the same so in my case, my art is a continuation of my singing displayed on canvas. I have no preconceived ideas and the fifinal fioutcome is always a wonderful surprise. One way to describe my paintings is to think about a song that soars to great heights and then swoops down low. It is vibrant and colorful and moves swiftly through mysterious moods into intense brightness as soft as a whisper, tranquil like a stream or as bold as a snow-covered mountain. I believe the inspiration cones from deep within me, from deep inside the earth and far out in the universe. By MELINDA RIZZO Through her music and visual art, Annie Haslam embodies a 21st century renaissance woman. From the beginning of her long musical career as the lead singer for the 1970s English progressive rock band Renaissance, Haslam’s five-octave voice remains as clean and pristine today as it did when she first recorded the band’s signature, often haunting, melodic sound. H a s l a m’s v o i c e i s i m m e d i a t e l y recognizable to those who know it, and was a renaissance at the time of The Rolling Stones and The Beatles. She is forever imprinted on such Renaissance classics as “Carpet of the Sun,” “Mother Russia,” “Ocean Gypsy,” “Northern Lights” and “Ashes are Burning.” If the titles of those hits resonate, look further, and a little deeper. On her website, anniehaslam.com, “Lost Kingdom,” “Blythe Spirit,” “Kingfisher” and “The Violinist” are among the titles of her paintings, whose exploration and melodic brush strokes push another facet of her creative endeavors. But what is remarkable about this Englishwoman, who quietly makes her home in bucolic Bucks County, Pennsylvania, is how she continues to grow into her own, evolving renaissance. 14 • Fine Art Magazine • Spring 2013
Annie Haslam with one of her painted guitars
Haslam as few among us, is blessed to channel her muse in a variety of ways. Whether it’s her on stage presence fronting Renaissance, or behind the scenes, hand painting one-of-a-kind musical instruments with a new, visual song, Haslam’s abilities are perfectly pitched. On the surface, making music and creating visual art may not appear to have much in common. Closer inspection reveals how the two can dovetail, such as her work with C. F. Martin & Co., of Nazareth, Pennsylvania, a worldrenown guitar maker and manufacturer. Haslam has painted instruments for ‘Wood’s’ violins, private collectors, music industry pros, the NAAM music convention and “The Art of the Guitar”, an art show at the Morrison Hotel Gallery in New York City
in 2011. For the C.F. Martin & Co. Museum, she was asked to paint one of their signature guitars, the Dreadnought. The Dreadnought is an acoustic instrument with a rich, full-of-bass sound, favored for decades by a variety of guitarists across all genres. “It was an amazing experience to go to Nazareth and tour the museum and factory, and meet the people who make the guitars. It’s a very special company, and it was an honor and privilege to be asked to paint one,” Haslam says. According to Haslam, both music and art are rich, layered and bursting with color, all critically important to her personally and professionally, and she has found ways to fuse the two.
Published on Mar 21, 2013
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