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Washington Voices

The Verve: Pair’s exhibit a rare event

Thu., Sept. 15, 2011

Many artists refer to their creative habits as a sort of compulsion, an unstoppable force urging them to create. While many of those artists share their work with others at shows or galleries, others simply fill their homes with what they’ve made where only family and friends are privy to their creative spirits.

Kat Hill and David Boshart are these kinds of artists – content to let the creative urge take over with or without an audience. But on Sept. 24, they will briefly unveil their work at Manic Moon Studios, 1625 N. Monroe St.

Manic Moon Studios is a fitting venue for Hill. As she leads you into her studio at her North Side home, she is quick to say, “Manic, huh?” Perhaps it’s because someone from her past used to call her nothing but a dreamer, as if it were a bad thing, and she expects that reaction from others. Her studio is full of things that could be found in Alice’s dream world or the kind of strange things children stash away in a secret box to be opened later as a reminder of childhood magic.

Hill enjoys giving life to the old and discarded. She has piano parts laying about. She got the piano for free.

“As I saw the piano being dissected by my husband and saw the hammers, sticks and screws, I knew they would become characters,” she said. “I was so delighted knowing that they were going to come alive. Strangely they tell me what they want to be.”

Boshart has been a registered nurse for over 30 years. As a child, he chose art over sports and was always the medic when playing war games. He has done macramé, bonsai, and recently converted a 1972 Volkswagen Beetle into an electric car. His hands are not idle even though he is missing two fingers on the left one.

“I’m a poster boy for why you don’t drink and use power tools,” he said. His left eye is also missing, replaced by a hardly noticeable plastic one, the result of a poke in the eye by a twig.

Boshart does not feel handicapped. He is calm and at peace. As of late, he has taken up painting, manipulating acrylic house paint on canvases laid flat on the floor of his garage at his South Hill home.

“Painting is for me an inward process directed towards the canvas, just me and the evolution,” he said. “I feel peace. I apply paint and feel ‘yes’ or ‘maybe’ or ‘not yet.’  There is this calmness and eventually something nice results.”

Both artists allow themselves to create without restraint: perhaps a compulsion, perhaps a feeding of the soul.

“I don’t have the power to change the world but I can make a difference in my corner,” Hill said. “I feel that whatever I do as long as it brings a lift to the spirit, it cannot be wrong.”

The Verve is a weekly feature celebrating the arts. If you know an  artist, dancer, actor, musician, photographer, band or singer, contact correspondent Jennifer LaRue by email at

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