Ah Haa: New Masterclass Series

Telluride’s Ah Haa School for the Arts’ New Masterclass Series brings professional working artists to Telluride. Lecture – Workshop – Critique format for painters, all levels. For more information and registration, visit www.ahhaa.org call 970-728-3886.

With the New Year, Ah Haa is introducing something new for those looking to deeply engage their creativity while working closely with professionals in the field of fine art. The school’s inaugural Masterclass Series brings two visiting artists to Telluride this winter to teach weekend-long intensives in painting.

Matt Kleberg and Pinkney Herbert will each present a Friday evening public lecture, a Saturday workshop, and a Sunday critique during their Masterclass sessions. Courses are scheduled for Feb. 19-21 and March 4-6, respectively.

Matt Kleberg

image, Matt Kleberg

Known for his incredible, vibrant portraits, in February, Brooklyn-based Matt Kleberg will instruct Inside Out, Outside In, a Masterclass lecture and workshop focused on the fascinating world of  “outsider art.”

During his free, Feb. 19 talk at the Wilkinson Public Library, Kleberg will explore how traditional artistic training, intuition, and imagination come together, drawing parallels between artistic innovations of the great masters and iconic vernacular artists of our time. He will look very closely at examples of work by artists familiar to most of us, as well as at that of relative unknowns.

Throughout the last century, many of the highest praised, best-trained, and historically significant artists drew inspiration from artists working outside the conventional bounds of the art world. Artists like Matisse, Picasso, Dubuffet, and many contemporary practitioners then combined skills learned during their art education with the rich internal visions of “outsider” artists to create breakthrough works that resonate on many levels.

Work by Matt Kleberg

Work by Matt Kleberg

During his Saturday, Feb. 20 workshop (10 a.m.-4 p.m.), Kleberg teaches students to combine the spatial and compositional sophistication of art history’s “insiders” with the intuitive, decorative, and personal visions of famous “outsiders.

On Sunday, 10 a.m.-noon, students return to class for a critique of their work and a follow up discussion as a group.

In March, celebrated abstract artist and 2014 Telluride Painting School instructor Pinkney Herbert returns to town to present In-To Abstraction, a Masterclass workshop about seeing and painting in abstract ways, drawing inspiration from nature or intuitive imagination.

Herbert is a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship recipient and founder of Marshall Arts, an alternative gallery in Memphis, Tenn.


On Friday, March 4, Herbert presents a free public lecture at the Wilkinson Library: “Paintings in Conversation with the History of Abstraction.” The artist will explore his own practice in relation to the evolving history of abstract painting.

The following day, Saturday, March 5, students participating in Herbert’s 10 a.m.-4 p.m. workshop get to experiment with different techniques and methods within the realm of abstract painting. Herbert encourages students to suspend judgment in order to liberate their painting process and experience.

Students receive constructive feedback on their work and continue the prior days’ discussion on Sunday, March 6, 10 a.m.-noon.


Registration is still open for both Masterclass Series workshops. Tuition for either class is $295. Tuition assistance is available.

No previous painting experience is necessary. Just bring your imagination (and your paints!).


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