Marilyn Cuellar
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Scene Newspaper, Stevens Point, WI

Interview with Marilyn Cuellar
by Jim Lundstrom | March 2009

Marilyn Cuellar’s world is black and white.

“To me, there’s so much to do with black and white that my brain does not process adding color to it. That’s a whole other world that is beyond me,” said the 2008 Festival of the Arts Best of Show winner.

Cuellar, of Cambridge, Minn., believes her chosen artistic medium – a simple No. 2B pencil – fits her nature.

“I like the basics.  I don’t like having to decide which pencil to use. I just use the one pencil, and I make it fit,” she said.

“These are not sketches, these are drawings,” she said. “Drawing is an old, old, old skill that’s been around forever. Most artists try it and go on to something else. For me it’s as elemental as can be, but it’s also so rich. It requires skill and knowledge of your medium, which is a pencil only, in order to interpret things and bring out your subject. You don’t get away with using color to fill out a portion of the page.”

She returns to this year’s Festival of the Arts in Stevens Point with another major award under her belt after taking best of show in a national juried show called the Uptown Art Show in Minneapolis last August.

“It’s gratification after all the years of drawing. In a show, the drawing category includes mixed media and pastels. It’s not often they recognize just bare black and white drawings with no color added,” she said. “It is really an honor to be recognized.”

The Festival of the Arts has earned a reputation among artists, and for that reason draws some visually stunning art in about every medium imaginable.

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