Judith Lavendar was born in Detroit, Michigan just as the United States was entering World War II. Raised on a horse farm, her first artistic endeavors were drawing the horses around her and she dreamed one day of being a horse show photographer. Judith was educated in New England and received her BFA from the University of Kentucky, she was headed to New York to become a painter but married, instead, and had a son. She trained thoroughbred horses and later worked as an AMSP photographer and as an art therapist.
In 1991 Judith moved to New Mexico where she followed the trails of Georgia O’Keefe, painted the landscape with Wolf Kahn, studied with Joan Snyder, and eventually studied at the University of Arizona where she hoped to become a political painter.
At the end of 2002, one thing led to another and Judith went to work for Howard Dean’s presidential campaign as Arizona state coordinator. For the thirteen or more months she worked in politics for Dean, Gov. Janet Napolitano, and others her art took a back seat. Between handing out leaflets, knocking on doors, and collecting donations the urge to make art surface and Judith took some watercolor paper, a few magazines, paint and glue and worked on her dining room table, producing several bright and happy collages.
Judith returned to New York City in 2005 and began art studies in earnest at the Art Students’ League. She then discovered drawing and painting on a larger scale at the New York Studio School where she joined the studio program and worked with atelier heads, Carole Robb and Bill Jensen. Three years later Judith received her MFA from Massachusetts College of Art and Design.
hen Judith’s life had shifted from rural living to city life a strange blend of the two occurs. Odd people, horses, dogs, and sometimes cars and planes inhabit the same space where they are often at odds with one another. Trips to the New York auto show, Washington Square Park, and rides on the Subway began to become an art. The images became more personal and psychologically charged and began to depict the human condition everywhere. Judith looks for life’s heartbeat at both curious and subtle, or dramatic moments. Her subjects begin to see more than a reﬂection of the material or conflicting juxtapositions of disparate subjects but kinds of reﬂections of her own inner world.
Judith has shown her work in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Washington D.C., Virginia, Massachusetts, and New Mexico.
Her other passions include bulldogs, flying, golf, and tennis. She is a published author and former magazine and news photographer.