Friday, February 26, 2010

Real Art 4 Children

Surrounded by art and artists for 10 weeks at the Celebration of Fine Art gives one a lot to think about.  Not many children come to the show, but from time to time, some wonderful home schooling parent shows up, or a grandmother patiently explaining to her charges how this or that is created.  I applaud these parents and grands!  With art budgets being decimated everywhere, it is so important to expose kids to "original" art - art which comes from the mind and hand of the artist.  Not patterns, not tracings, not molds, not kits, not mass produced Barbie scenes, or production line action figures, not poster prints, not extruded clay figures or paint by number.

Bring them to the Celebration of Fine Art.  This is what they can see - Liana Tumino doing real, original frescos of her mother's village in Italy, done in the traditional way on plaster she makes in her studio; Ken Newman sculpting huge hunks of wood with gouges and hammers, turning slabs into beautiful soaring birds and wild coyotes erupting from the log; Eric Poulson with nothing but a palette knife and a tray of oil paints creating morning desert scenes and jars filled with bright blossoms.  And there are about 80-90 more artists creating from their imagination every day - no kits.

And if you want to give your child or grand something that will last a lifetime, consider starting an original art collection for them by buying a small piece each year...a small oil painting, a tiny bronze, a hand made bead........if a child sees that a house can be painted, perhaps he will see that he could design a house.  If a child sees that a bird can be carved, perhaps she will see that a species needs saving.  If a child sees color being mixed, perhaps it will be a happier day.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Seven Poppies Question

This piece has been in the entry area of the Celebration of Fine Art for a week or so.  It's an interesting exercise to put a work out of your daily vision for a while and then come back to it.  I have always loved this piece.  It is so close to a perfect interpretation of what was in my head!  To see it afresh amazed me, and with humility, I say that it is still among the best three pieces I have ever done.

That raises the question of value.  Sure, it has a price tag on it.  But it is a piece that may well remain in my personal collection.  I don't believe in keeping much of my own work.  I think it can be too self-congratulatory and often acts like a kind of glue, sticking you to an idea, an image, an interpretation, when what I want to do is to keep experimenting, move onward, test new ground, push the limits of this humble material, and, of course, the boundaries of my imagination.

So.  Keep it?  Sell it?

Raining cats and dogs

It might be raining cats & dogs outside but there are beautiful cat and dog sculptures in Ken Newman's booth at the show - check it out

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Artist's block?

 There's an article in the NYT about Georgelle Hirliman's death and her career as Writer in the Window, spawned from a bad case of "writer's block." What do you do for "artist's block"?  I work with random color and texture till something bubbles through the fog in my brain.  Sometimes that means many layers - kind of "paint by the pound" - but my subconscious usually fights to the fore and rescues me.

Grey and rain can put me to sleep, creatively and physically, so today in AZ gives me a chance to wake up with vermillion cerise cobalt and leaf!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Damsel in the Garden

Here's the painting I mentioned yesterday.  See it at the Celebration of Fine Art in Scottsdale.  The texture and layers make it delectable up close.  The deep colors pull you in from a distance.  24 x 30 I think, acrylic on board.

Painting at the Celebration

Can't believe the show is nearly half over - 5 weeks left.  Finished a new painting today - experimenting with different levels of gloss coat, creating depth and edges.  Took pics but have to downsize them to pb - hopefully tonight.  Beautiful days in AZ! Celebration

Monday, February 8, 2010

"Summer Rain" acrylic painting on board

I decided to have a giclee made of this piece. I've never made prints of my work before, but this painting is so joyful in color and image that I want to make it accessible to more people. I did the color check with the printer last week and it should be in my studio at the Celebration of Fine Art today.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Section of new painting

So much color in my life!  I was looking at this closeup of a painting I recently finished and thought it would make a nice piece by itself.  One of the fascinating things about using a lot of texture in painting is the depth it can create.  I almost always paint using many layers of transparent paints and I like watching the interplay of the colors and shapes created by layering.  These paintings are often really interesting to look at from very close up - almost under a microscope kind of feeling. 

It is currently hanging in the Northwest Salon at the Celebration of Fine Art in Scottsdale.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

New Collection of Japanese Inspired Work

Just finished a large work inspired by Japanese Ukiyoe woodblock prints.  Subtle and sophisticated colors in rich earth tones accented by spots of deep corals.  Forgot my camera at the show yesterday, but I'll get a pic posted tomorrow.  It looks fabulous beside another piece which sits in an old glass and wood display case which has the feel of country Japanese architecture.

Monday, February 1, 2010

2010 at the Celebration of Fine Art

Wow! How did it get to be February so soon?

Now that we're settled in to the 2010 Celebration of Fine Art, I thought I would start putting up pics of new work that is on exhibit at the show. So, here is "Hollyhocks". It's a zucca gourd, about 38" on the stand, 10" or so, wide. It is different views of hollyhocks, wheat grasses and butterflies on all sides. I always "see" the design in the raw gourd, and this was no different - on this side, behind each blossom on the curved stem, was a discolored dimple in the gourd. Instantly I thought of my grandmother's garden and of the hollyhocks standing tall and leaning against the house. I never see them anymore - perhaps NC is just too hot and humid or, hmmmm, maybe it's because I live in the city and hollyhocks really are a country kind of flower. At any rate, the colors are beautifully shaded and the whole piece very luminescent.

Come to the show and check it out!