Julie Harvey is a painter from Franklin, Tennessee, where she has lived most of her life. Growing up in a home where creativity was encouraged, her inspired soul was apparent even at very early age. Her first experience with self expression was in music, as she played piano constantly, taking every opportunity possible to play and perform. She continued training as a concert pianist up until she was around 18 years old, when she began taking art classes in college. Painting and drawing had always been enjoyable for her, but after being introduced to more in-depth studies of working with different materials and discovering artists with whom she could identify with, she found an entirely new path to pursue. Painting was her chosen area of concentration, and she immediately threw herself into her work. Sometimes she would be so enthralled in painting that she would forget about going to her classes, and just paint in the studio all day. She would often continue working late into the night and early morning hours, which continues to be her favorite time to paint. This passion to create remains constant with her daily as she continues to develop her body of work, enjoying every second she can spend in the comfort of her studio at home. Julie received a Bachelors Degree of Fine Art, Concentration in Painting, from Tennessee Technological University. She also worked toward her Fine Arts degree while attending Belmont University, Middle Tennessee State University, and studies abroad before completing her degree in 1998. Her work can be seen in many homes across the country, varying in style from traditional family homes to the most lavish homes of elite political figures. Her paintings are in the permanent collections of ultra-chic architecture firms, posh home and office design groups, and high-end real estate offices in the Nashville area. Julie has even supplied cover art for rock and heavy metal bands as far away as Denmark.
The process by which Julie arrives at a finished piece is the essence of her work. Her balanced compositions create a welcome environment over which a viewer’s eye can travel fluidly, while her characteristic use of texture speaks volumes to the process contained in the work. Her style is bold, lending itself to the large canvases she uses. Her paintings begin by playing around with colors and textures on the canvas, with no specific goal in mind. This method of preparation not only starts the process of image-building, but also is a sort of preparatory meditation for her as well. Over this layer of under-painting begins the true grit of the piece. During a work’s production, she tears through any overworked areas with palette knives, revealing the fresh new colors and surfaces underneath, while in contrast, assembling areas around those voids with even more layers of buttery texture. Hints of images will present themselves to her as she will start building on them, carving and adding paint, until finally the image has come forward within the layers. Her finished works are often dream-like visuals, often interpreted as alternate realities, cavernous expanses, or nebulous bodies in space. Sometimes her subjects are as concrete as buildings, animals or figures. In any case, her work portrays abstracted forms, generated from a place without boundaries, where reality often ends, and dreams begin.