El Dorado artist Marla Tomlinson and her exhibit entitled “Cult of Color” is now hanging in the Lobby Gallery through August 28. An artist’s reception will be held on Monday, August 31, 5:30-6:30pm. 

Originally from Northwest Florida, Tomlinson has dabbled in art her whole life and has garnered awards along the way, starting in her early years and throughout high school and college.

“As an adult, I did the fine arts and arts and crafts circuit throughout Florida, winning awards throughout the years. With all these tools, I developed my own style and have experimented with all the mediums, but I currently focus on acrylic and watercolors,” said Tomlinson.

She is inspired by popular culture, from makeup and style blogs to television and magazines. This widely varied subject matter serves as inspiration in the colors and design choices for her work. “People have always fascinated me as subjects for paintings, so I naturally gravitate to portrait painting,” she said. “I love to highlight the strength and beauty of women in my paintings and love using bright colors and bold patterns. I also enjoy doing fun and funky pet portraits and am always available for commissions of both.”

Tomlinson likes to focus on acrylics and would describe the style of this show as contemporary art—realism, but with bright and crazy patterns. Her background in watercolor informs the brushwork and use of light in these acrylic pieces, which rely on saturated colors and bold contrasts.

Excited to be having her first solo exhibit at SAAC, Tomlinson has been a supporter since moving to Arkansas a few years ago. “When we moved to El Dorado in 2014 and were exploring, one of the first things I discovered was the arts center,” she said. “I joined SAAC as a member in 2015, and I have exhibited in the membership show every year. I was asked to become a member of the visual arts committee in 2019.”

The artist reception will be hosted for small groups on Monday, August 31 with scheduled times for viewing beginning at 5:30pm or 6:00pm. Place your reservation for a time slot here or by calling SAAC at 870-862-5474. As per Governor Hutchinson’s statewide order, masks must be worn. If you are drinking a beverage, you may remove your mask, but you must practice social distancing of at least 6 feet when you are “uncovered”.