Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Ursula Roma’s talent is protean. A deft draftsman, she has an exuberant sense of pattern and a sharp eye for the distribution of space. She has obviously looked to Modernist masters like Dufy, Miro, Matisse, and Klee; her work also has something in common with James Thurber’s and with the work of contemporary illustrators Maira Kalman, Beth Krommes, and Richard Egielski. Because Roma is so versatile, with such a wide range, she can find the style in the occasion—rather than impose it. Each assignment thus calls forth a response that’s fresh.

The doodles, cartoons, and caricatures are particularly artful. Beautifully drawn and succinctly written, they yoke wry revelation with an economy of gesture. The doodles exemplify the sense of humor, acute as it is benign, that underlies all her art. Like all illustrators, she creates a world, and in Roma’s case it’s a particularly affirmative one: rueful but festive, winsome and a little wary, but above all, bright. Since she has both real content and expert craft at her command, it will be a pleasure to follow her career.

Maureen Bloomfield, Editor, The Artist’s Magazine