THE CREATIVE VISION
Through the creative life they share, artist owners Betsy Youngquist & R. Scott Long work to explore tales of human truths, while overlapping dimensional realities along a conscious continuum. Within these creative journeys, the illusive line between logic and the mystic is a constant curiosity.
Duality, mischief, transfiguration, enchantment, and amusement are the narrative themes the artists masterfully toy with in capturing those elusive qualities of the human experience. Their work is Inspired greatly by the unknown, the surreal, the mythical, and folklore.
A life long Rockford, IL resident, Betsy was born in 1965. Her parents worked as a schoolteacher and a lumber contractor. Recalling Betsy’s first time making art, her mother recounts how she inadvertently left a marker uncapped on the living room's coffee table. With it, toddler Betsy scribbled on the the marble tabletop. Betsy's Mom remembers how amazed she was with the accidental “drawing” and ran next door to her mother-in law’s house, exclaiming, “We have an artist here!” At 3, Betsy told her mother, in a calm and matter-of-fact way, that she was just her “earth mother” and that her real mother lived on another planet. Later that same year, her parents let Betsy stay up to watch the historic, first manned, Apollo moon landing. A few years later, Betsy’s family took an Airstream camper trip throughout the Northwest US and Western Canada, introducing her to First Nations, American Indian and Intuit, artwork and people. Betsy attributes to that early encounter, her love of beads, and the power to incorporate mythological and spiritual understandings through art. To this day, she admires cultures where art is a sacred creation and acts to bridge the spiritual with the mundane.
R. SCOTT LONG
Born in Rockford, Illinois, to a homemaker and a Hostess Cupcake delivery driver and print sales rep, Scott was just eight years old when he carved a little sparrow from wood, learning the craft from his Dad- himself a self taught carver. After this initial success, young Scott wanted to carve a chickadee, and built a trap to capture one for use as a live model. The little bird was so stressed from capture that Scott had to set it free. At the age of twelve, Scott tried carving his own likeness in wood, and recalls thinking that it really wasn’t him carving at all, but “as if someone else was doing the carving through him.”
One night, when Scott was thirty, and living in Milwaukee, he was using a meditation technique his mother had taught him as a child to better fall asleep. As he began the meditation, he felt a sudden “circular wave of energy” loop through his body. He recalls immediately standing up, walking out of the room, and down the hallway- experiencing a new phenomenon known as astral projection. The occurrence had a powerful effect on Scott, and still influences the subjects he now explores in his work.
One of the driving mysteries behind Scott’s work is “what are humankind’s unknown capacities and potential, and from where have we come?” Scott still carves little birds as gifts for his beloved partner of twenty years, Betsy, and helps her with construction of the sculptural armatures she envisions as the base for her giant beaded works of art.