Libby Ramage

“After my mother’s death, I inherited a bag of old photographs. The bulk of them were from the sixties and seventies and the colors were changed and muted. I was struck by the fact that almost all the people in these photos were dead and I was practically the sole survivor of these memories. I have undertaken not only to to tell the story of these images using my technique of building layers of charcoal and acrylic with collage materials, but to convey a psychological and emotional connection to these ghosts through me. I use pages from a 1984 almanac to incorporate the texture of the words.   The paper is fragile and yellowed like the data it bears.  

I use pieces of old maps to express movement and connectedness, roads and highways are like threads that bind us. The names of places are like the names of ghosts.  Some of the roads are gone and replaced by larger, newer routes.  I layer and mix the photographs with imagined faces that appear to me like apparitions drifting up through the paint and paper.  These memories become dreamlike in my art, and I want to snatch them up in my hand and make them seen, throw them out into the world so they will not vanish forever.”

Libby was born in Youngstown, Ohio and attended the School of the Museum off Fine Arts, Boston where she earned her diploma (1978) and fifth year certificate (1979).  She has since lived in the New York/New Jersey area for many years.  Libby has exhibited in many local galleries and exhibits as well as nationally. Most notable among these are the Mercer County Artists Exhibit where she received honorable mention in 2017 and was a Cultural Commission purchase in 2015, the City of Trenton’s Ellarslie Museum where she received best in show for drawing in 2015 and the Butler Institute of American Art national Midyear show in both 2012 and 2015.  Libby was the visual artist in a flamenco residency “Finding Light Through Fire” at the Arts Council of Princeton where she created projected art work for the choreographies as well as painted live on panels of Zen paper to musical performances.

Libby has worked with the Arts Council of Princeton for many years as an exhibitor and an instructor of children’ classes, summer camps and after school programs. She created an award winning art program for the Princeton Nursery School as well as working on residency projects in the Princeton public elementary schools. She has also illustrated the children’s book One By One by Harlan Platt.