Ann Louise Binghamfreeman, died on March 14, 2021.
In her 20s, Ann toyed with becoming a nurse but soon learned her fascination with the human body lay more in studying the human form through art than medicine, which she did to the last days of her spirited life. She drew, she painted, she assembled in clay, in paper, in metal -- the female form, again and again, depicting its beauty, individuality, and importance.
Ann was born and spent her childhood in Riverside, among vast acres of orange groves and open trails where she developed a love of the outdoors, horses, and reading. Her attachment to the earth, to intuition, and to metaphor came to life through her voracious curiosity; she was ever a student and a teacher. Her art drew on these fascinations.
After graduating from Poly High School, she worked for her father, a prominent orthopedic surgeon, before traveling to Mexico to study art. Upon her return she met a tall handsome Vietnam vet whose name, at first, she missed, and fell in love. She nicknamed him “Blondie.” By the time they were married, she knew his name was Fred Freeman; the nickname stuck. Ever her champion, Fred supported her as she returned to the Johnston Center of the University of Redlands where she earned a bachelor’s degree in fine art. While a student, her first daughter Erin was born; six years later her second daughter, Rebecca (Becky) was born. These two and their daughters are a reflection of Ann’s principles, zest, and humor. Ann, a member of the Redlands and Riverside Art Associations and a diehard member of the Fifth Avenue Swim Club, was not really a joiner, but somehow she belonged everywhere.
She made fast friends with store clerks, waiters, and waitresses because she had a way of setting people free, of saying, often in the vernacular, what they were thinking or wanted to say themselves.
Ann was one of the most celebrated and prize winning artists in the region, winning awards year after year. Her work hangs in hundreds of homes and has appeared in numerous shows including Ink and Clay, the Multi-Media Mini Show, and the National Orange Show. The Kellogg Gallery of Cal Poly Pomona featured her work in a retrospective show. Ann was extremely proud of her permanent collections which can be found at the University of Redlands, California State University - Pomona, and the Cool Globes Exhibit which travels the world.
Ann was most at peace at her home in Yucaipa holding hands with Fred, playing cards, watching Perry Mason, reading, sitting outdoors by her koi pond next to the Japanese maple she loved, contemplating art and life, and soaking up inspiration from the world around her.
She is survived by her husband Fred, her daughters Erin and Becky, her granddaughters Veronica and Isabelle and more friends and admirers than can be counted, all of whom will remember her bawdy humor, her generous energy, her ferocious loyalty, her deep love of family and friends, and her daring art-- the canvas of her fully-lived life.
Funeral Arrangements are under the care of Weaver-Hughes Mortuary, Yucaipa.