When does a landscape become more than a landscape?
To Noelle Stoffel, when a vantage point shifts, the lens through which a landscape is viewed awakens sensations that interpret place and space via fresh colors, forms and textures. “That’s what happened with the creation of this collection,” Noelle explains. “Flying low over Kansas City in a small plane let me experience my home anew. Beyond two-or three-dimensions, I could interpret layers of artistry in the shapes and colors below me. Those views were mixed with my feelings of home – I’ve been part of Kansas City nearly all my adult life. But this view from above had a spiritual sense to it, almost a cosmic view of God looking into my world.”
The works that resulted had to be captured as impressions, interpreting colors, shapes and sensations into these expressions of the city she loves. She explains, “I’m hoping my works invite people to take a second or third look, to discover something unexpected, and to explore the mysteries beneath the apparent.”
Noelle Stoffel may have set a new standard for an early career start, since she accompanied her father to art classes at age five. Later in childhood she would be matched with artist Joyce Winter in Wisconsin, and for over thirteen years would spend six hours or more most Saturdays in the Winter studio working with paint, clay, and charcoal, experimenting with nearly every medium and tool imaginable. “I learned there that art was everywhere, in every aspect of life,” Noelle recalls. “In the years ahead when I traveled with my family, observed architecture and nature, and reflected on events, I’d find myself studying surfaces, light play and the texture of everyday objects. And these mixed with the feelings evoked by the relationships in my life. I turned naturally to the canvas to interpret all these shifting views and emotions.”
Study at a private high school for the arts only increased her passion, and helped direct her to the Kansas City Art Institute for training. After art school, she fulfilled a childhood dream of designing for Hallmark, and then shifted to focus on her own paintings for galleries, exhibitions and commissions. She paints mostly expressionist and abstract works, some textural with acrylic paint and mixed media. For her, expressionism is the visual interpretation of emotions: the result of movement, gestures, colors playing over and against each other, framed by the communication of an inner vision. “It’s what flows from me to the canvas,” she explains, “when I open myself up and let go.”
Her work can be found in galleries and collections throughout the United States, as well as the Caribbean.