The Colors of Michigan Artist Stephanie Schlatter
In both wine and art, the first thing a viewer notices is color. One of the most colorful artists in the Midwest, Stephanie Schlatter of Grand Rapids, is working with more Michigan wineries and tasting rooms these days. Schlatter has now exhibited her paintings at 10 wineries in Northern Michigan and she is looking to expand south.
“I love that collectors have a fun approachable way to connect with my art while having a great time at Michigan wineries,” Schlatter said.
Frequently, Schlatter is commissioned to paint by wineries and tasting rooms and then sells her canvases at the winery. For example, Schlatter is the featured artist at Michigan By the Bottle Tasting Room in Shelby Township. Her collaboration with Michigan By the Bottle Tasting Room includes art classes and live painting fundraisers for the non-profit organization Absolutely Art: A Project for Change.
Michigan by the Bottle co-owner Cortney Casey recalls how she first become exposed to Schlatter’s work. “Several years ago, my husband, Shannon, and I began noticing Stephanie’s artwork at various wineries in Northern Michigan, and it stood out because of the gorgeous bright colors, and, of course, the subject matter: Michigan vineyards,” Casey said.
As Casey planned the decor for the Michigan By The Bottle Tasting Room in Shelby Township, she immediately thought of Stephanie’s artwork. “We feature about a dozen of her larger paintings on the walls in our main space, and we also carry her smaller mixed media pieces and prints,” Casey said.
In the Leelanau Peninsula, Chateau de Leelanau Winery recently unveiled a massive outdoor vineyard mural painted by Schlatter. The mural is on the outside wall of the winery’s tasting room and is easily seen when driving north on M-22 toward Suttons Bay.
‘The outdoor seating beside the mural offers wine tasters a great location to relax along the Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail,” says Chateau de Leelanau’s co-owner Matt Gregory. Schattler’s art is also featured on the wine label for Chateau de Leelanau’s new sparkling wine, Muse.
The connection between wine and art is not only visual. As Elizabeth Slater reported in Vineyard and Winery Management this month, studies have found that wine tastes 50% sweeter under red lights rather than blue or white lights. Schlatter agrees there is an interrelationship between the senses of sight, taste and smell.
“Yes, I do think the visual effects the whole wine and food experience,” Schlatter said. “I suppose that’s why eating alfresco is so popular.”
Homepage photo: Stephanie Schlatter painting on location at Blustone Vineyards on the Leelanau Peninsula.