(American, 20th-21st C.) A Western New York native, artist Judith Hartke has spent her life experiencing and exploring the natural world. Starting with smaller pets in her very early years, she graduated to collecting larger and larger animals until culminating with bringing home her first horse unannounced when she was fourteen. When heading off to college, she felt the need to choose between her passion for art and animals and graduated from Cornell with a Bachelor’s in both Animal Science and Education. After thirteen years working as a Nutrition and Management consultant to dairy farms, Judy found a way to combine both her interests, and transitioned to becoming a full-time wildlife artist by 2003.
Starting out early in her career winning “Artist of the Year” several times in New York State’s Wildlife Art competition, Judy’s first Federal Duck Stamp entries placed 10th and 12th . Since that time, the artist has gone on to win awards and acceptance into may national and international competitions, shows, and exhibitions and her work has been sold by galleries throughout the country in such places as Jackson Hole, North Carolina, Florida, and New York and in exhibitions from Henderson, Kentucky to San Diego, California to Tokyo, Japan. A signature member of the Society of Animal Artists, Judy’s work has been included in cards, calendars, and books, such as “The Biology and Management of Whitetail Deer”, edited by Dr. David Hewitt of Texas A&M and one of the most comprehensive books ever compiled on the Whitetail.
Over the years, traveling for shows and collecting reference material provided Judy with even more depth and breadth with which to explore the subtleties of our natural world. After visiting Kenya in 2006 to see firsthand the challenges facing some of our world’s most iconic wildlife species and then later exploring the museums of Paris and studying works of the old masters, Judy’s focus matured and slightly shifted to include a broader scope of subjects and experimentation with graphite and charcoal compositions, among other artistic explorations.
Born into a very metaphysically gifted family, Judy's early paths took her into more commonplace realms and her spiritual gifts lay buried for decades. In 2009 however, a chance event brought her to her first BioGenesis Energy work appointment, and from that time forward, her creative abilities blossomed and expanded to include the study, exploration, depiction and teaching of what she has come to think of as "non-ordinary reality" -a fascinating and somewhat 'unproveable' part of life that nonetheless exists and is available for everyone to explore and enjoy.
In 2011, she opened her first center on the historic Roycroft Campus in East Aurora, NY. Awakenings provided a supportive environment in which people could learn about and explore their own gifts, and access services in the holistic and spiritual realm. In 2015, WillowLight was born when she moved and expanded the center to include the talents of ten other practitioners and increased classroom space. The center provides a platform for talented holistic and spiritual practitioners and teachers to bring their gifts to others, and hosts classes, events, and retreats with teachers from across the country. (Please visit the site if you would like to explore more about the center: www.WillowLight.org)
Judy currently spends her creative and working time in a wonderful balance between painting nature art, meeting clients for Spirit Art Readings and BioGenesis appointments, and managing the center. Please visit her Art Schedule page for a listing of coming shows and events, or her Scheduling page to schedule an appointment for a Spirit Art or BioGenesis session.
To view additional works or to contact the artist, please visit Judith’s website link
(Source: The artist's personal website.)