Jaqueline Welch is a western New York painter who is interested in depicting animals, religious symbols, and landscapes. Often, all of these components are combined in her works.
"My current painting practice is narrative and addresses the animal as companion. I am specifically intrigued by the bond between humans and dogs. In several series of paintings I advocate for street dogs, shelter dogs and racetrack dogs and their right to be life-long companions. My concerns involve the plight of street dogs of Bali where there are few organized animal welfare programs, the struggle by many US communities to establish no-kill shelters, the rise in abandoned pets due to a failing economy and the continued practice by some greyhound racing kennels to send non-racers to research labs or to be unnecessarily euthanized. In my work the dogs become patron saints that represent a human idiosyncrasy or the hero figure of a miraculous event.
Altarpieces, religious symbols and the landscape also interest me. The sacred and pagan elements in my work are derived from my Irish-Catholic background and my interest in medieval painting and celtic art. The landscapes I create reflect hikes in Letchworth State Park, on Wellesley Island and along the shore of Lake Erie." (Welch)
Describing her artistic process, Welch writes: "My studio process is drawing intensive; I generally work on gessoed panels, sometimes in a triptych format. Paint is applied in semi-transparent layers of oil glazes using an oil wipe technique so that parts of the drawing show through."
Born in Rochester, Jaqueline Welch has lived in western New York since 1982, when she moved here as a newly-wed. She has attended a number of colleges over the years, including the Rochester Institute of Technology, Monroe Community College, SUNY College at Buffalo (Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting) and Vermont College of Fine Art (Master of Fine Arts in Visual Arts). Welch teaches art at Mount Mercy Academy High School, where she has taught for the past twenty years.
Welch loves the western New York region for many reasons. "I love the close community of artists and art supporters here in Buffalo. I also love living near the lake but only an hour or two from great hiking in Letchworth State Park, Zoar Valley and the Niagara Falls gorge. I feel lucky to live in a city with such a rich architectural heritage AND a dog park on the river!"