The stream of consciousness that flows freely through Lake Worth resident and artist Rosemary Otto’s mind is an imagination as vast as the ocean that is depicted in each of her oils on canvas.
A sensuous texture of meaning and emotion, her work, which is currently exhibited at Bruce Webber Gallery in Lake Worth, both troubles and delights the viewer. Trees are freed from their natural roots and the branches are filled with symbolism and imaginative figures.
Her uncensored vision of the world has been described as symbolic, allegorical, metaphorical, emotional and imaginative.
“I have this creative method whereby I ask questions of myself — who, what, where and why — The answer comes to me in my head, and my painting verbalizes my thought process,” she said. “I just paint whatever I think of and I don’t censor it. It emerges one step at a time.”
Born in Aschendorf, Germany in 1938, the daughter of an American mother and a German father, Otto came to Lake Worth with her mother and sister in 1945 and she still lives in her great grandmother’s house.
“When my grandmother came to Florida for the winter, her father asked her to see if she could find a little bungalow for sale,” Otto said. “And she saw this house with a flame vine. She said she always bought the flame vine.”
Mary Frances Wood Otto, Rosemary’s mother, taught art at Lake Worth Community High School for 30 years. “I had her in school from 7th grade to 12th grade. It was wonderful,” Otto said.
Inheriting a love of art from her mother, Otto studied art at the University of Southern Mississippi, the University of Florida, Florida State, Palm Beach Community College and Florida Atlantic University. “I kept trying to be an artist,” she said.
Bruce Webber Gallery is at 705 Lucerne Avenue, Lake Worth. Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. For information, call (561) 582 1045 or visit the gallery’s site.