BETTE BATES lives in Black Mountain and teaches drawing and printmaking at Warren Wilson College. Originally from Columbia, Missouri she received her MFA in printmaking from East Carolina University. Previously she taught at the University of North Carolina-Asheville, Eastern New Mexico University, and has served as an artist/teacher for the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is the recipient of a North Carolina Arts Council Visual Artist Fellowship, an Artist Project Grant from the Asheville Area Arts Council, and a Ucross Foundation Residency Grant. She has exhibited widely and has work in public and private collections, including the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, the Asheville Art Museum, and Bank of America.
I am inspired by the process of drawing and the simple act of making marks, by feeling a partnership with the materials used, and also by the power of images to deeply affect our lives. I have been exploring the idea and image of Eve and am in awe of the power this one image has had to affect the lives of millions of people for thousands of years. I'm inspired as well by my students' exploration of the visual language and their search for meaningful form. It's exciting to witness a growing confidence and trust in their own perception as they develop their art. Their searching challenges my assumptions and helps me see things in a new light. I admire the commitment to art as well as social justice and environmental issues that so many students here have. Also I really appreciate the support and openness I find at Warren Wilson to try new processes and materials in an effort to make the practice of art, and in particular printmaking, less toxic and more responsible and sustainable.