Artist’s Statement


Shirley Baskin Familian’s Art spans more than 8 decades of active work. Born in Canada, she was raised in Seattle and graduated from the University of Washington, majoring in Art and Design.  She married young and after her children were in school, she resumed her creative life making hundreds of pen and pencil drawings, focused on everyday objects and designs.

In her 30’s she began to reach out to other mediums in which pure design played a larger role.  She focused for a decade on tile mosaics and designs, creating works of pure design as well as figurative pieces. In her 40’s to 60’s she studied with noted artists Oscar Van Young and Norman Zammit, expanding her work now into oils and acrylics. At this time she showed her work at the Feingarten Gallery in Los Angeles. It was also during this period she created a piece comprised of “extended doodles” on a roll of paper twenty five feet long and of extremely detailed design. She also painted canvas pieces that could be used as wall hangings or rugs.

A long time stamp collector, Shirley was fascinated by the varieties of colors and designs that arrived on her desk from all over the world.  Recycling was also important to her, resulting in her challenge to reuse the stamps to create works of art.  For the past twenty five years she has been collaging the stamps, as though they were mosaic tiles, to flat designs, as well as transforming everyday objects into unique sculptures.

“All artists study and grow…. My “stamp objects” are a result of both my studies, growth, and equally important, my need to create.”

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