Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Bellevue Art Museum rocks

John Buck, East West

Open spacious, a very quiet space with free parking in a beautiful new building in downtown Bellevue stands the Bellevue Art Museum. As one climbs the museum's interior staircase, a feeling of quiet descends. A sense of intimacy of the exhibition space is forthcoming.

On the day I visited, I was the only person on the floor other than a docent volunteer.
The show is John Buck Iconography from the collection of Jordan D. Schnitzer and his family foundation.

My work focuses on three basic formats: wood block prints, wood relief panels and sculpture which feed into one another. By shifting from printmaking to painting, I am able to see with a fresh eye. -John Buck

Tattoo, edition 4/15, 1992
Five-color woodcut, lithograph, chine colle
74 x 37 in.

John's work, the wood blocks & rubbings appear to be created of complex spaces and elements that initially appear to be flat. Standing close up to the works, the background icons that appear are pretty graffiti like and even cartoonish. Very beautiful and very difficult to print.

North of South, 2005
Wood panel with acrylic paint
72 x 72 x 3.5 in.

The elaborate assemblages of sculpted wood chiseled boxes are multi - paralleled universes with minimal colors. His choices are an amazing 60's Yves blue or a red.

My sculpture is inspired by contemporary issues as well as primitive and folk art of many cultures.My approach to sculpture is a combination of figurative and abstract compositions which represent the imagination as physical forms and that combine the properties of balance and tension.

from the catalogue essay from What the Fox Knows: The Art of John Buck by Eleanor Heartney.

The show is a must see up till February 28th.

About the Artist
John Buck was born in Ames, Iowa. He studied with Roy De Forest, William T. Wiley, Robert Arneson and Manuel Neri at the University of California, Davis, and out of these fertile roots developed an authentic, resonant, lyrical voice – a voice unmistakably his own. He currently divides his time between a ranch in Bozeman, Montana and studios on the island of Hawaii, together with his wife, artist Deborah Butterfield.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The other things artist do

Anne Belov

With thanksgiving, this week, I got to thinking about all the different activities and passions that we enjoy. The different ways we sustain our life styles of how we eat, play, work and nourish ourselves.

Most of the people I know are artists. This year has been difficult for many. The sales of artworks used to sustain artists financially and spiritually, but now some artists are finding themselves driven to other vocations to create revenue sources.

Anne Belov, a fabulous painter is exploring the cartoon/comic strip world of her creation, Bob the Panda and his adventures. It is amazing how a cute Panda and his friends have the funny struggles and adventures outside the zoo world. Anne is trying to get published.

Michael Dickter

Michael Dickter, another wonderful painter has been a part time graphics designer and architectural photographer and designer. He was the last freelancer to leave a large firm in Seattle. AS the real estate market is picking up perhaps so will his photography business. I am currently working on a project with Michael that has to do with waterworks gallery's upcoming 25th Anniversary. [More on that later].

Jaime Ellsworth

Jaime Ellsworth, another fabulous [yes I do repre sent a wonderful & fabulous group of artists] painter has recently completed a training course and has become a dog trainer of service dogs that work with people with disabilities. She is amazing with her generosity of spirit and love of animals. Jaime is the president of the San Juan Island Animal Shelter located here in Friday Harbor.

Sue Roberts

Sue Roberts, a fabulous sculptor is the creator of delicious chocolate caramels and turtles. For years, Sue created small batches of caramels and sold them to a small but loyal audience. This year she was able to rent a commercial kitchen and went into a small limited hand made production. The name of her company is Tickled Pink [sweet!] The gallery will have a limited supply of her fabulous chocolates for sale! How sweet!

We are all doing what we need to survive this year. Last night, I had dinner with Sue and we talked about this year. The year has elements that we support and other elements that have been difficult to digest. While we are both guardedly optimistic, we both felt the year has been about major shifts in our lives. Life style adjustments.

The ability to spend time and conversations with friends is tantamount to living in these times.

For Sue, she tried out being a chocolatier. Lots of hard work and a great product.

Does she want to continue on this path, decidedly not? She is a sculptor and will continue pushing out the edges of her works [metaphorically].

For me, the gift has been spending time getting to know them personally with Anne, with Michael, with Jaime and with Sue.

This is the time of year, to remember what where we were earlier in the year and to me be amazed that it is late November.

Winter solstice is a month away. With that in mind the days will start getting longer. The cycle renews itself.

We are grateful for the seasons and the changes they bring about.

I hope you share time with loved ones and good friends
I hope you share food and drink with loved ones and friends.
And most important now
I hope you share art with loved ones and friends.


Monday, November 2, 2009

Art and The word Giclee

Jim Meyer, Early Winter, reduction woodblock, edition 12

Regularly at my gallery, lots of the visitors are not folks who are experienced gallery goers. I find myself spending time chatting about favorite places to eat and what to do. Educating people about art is at times, the mainstay of the gallery. Explaining techniques, an artist’s vision. People are exploring the islands and all that we have to experiences.

I explain that waterworks gallery was founded by me in 1985 with the concept of showcasing artists based in the San Juan Islands and the Pacific Northwest including Washington, Oregon and British Columbia. The northwest experience is reflected in the work of the painters and sculptors represented by gallery. Artists and their visions are always evolving and changing reflecting the changing times we live in.

The question leads to the various media I show i.e. the traditional mediums including oils, watercolors, pastels, bronze, glass, ceramic and stone. Currently, a few artists create encaustic paintings in their particular style.

Stephen Mcmillian, Island View,Aquatint etching, edition: 250

I showcase printmakers whose works on paper are created using relief
(block printing), lithography or intaglio. These editions may range in size from 10 to 250 images. A few print makers embellish their wood cuts or lithograph with pastel or paint. These works are marked as E.V. (Edition Variety) All editioned works are called multiple originals; each one is unique in its hand work and might be slightly different.
The most important idea to remember when looking at works on paper is the intent of the artist. The artist chooses a medium to present their vision to the public. The artist creates the edition and the content. What is it the artist wants the work to look like?

In relief, lithography, intaglio and serigraphy techniques, all of these parameters are done by hand, as is the tradition of printmaking. Printmaking goes back to the first impressions created in the woodcuts of 14th century China & Japan. Rembrandt and Durer were both master intaglio printmakers.

Today there is a medium that artists are choosing to use called a Giclee. Simply put, a digital photograph is taken of a painting. The image is uploaded to a computer, tweaked, saved and then printed on a large inkjet printer.

The Definition
: Giclee (zhee-klay) - The French word "giclee" is a feminine noun that means a spray or a spurt of liquid. The word may have been derived from the French verb "gicler" meaning "to squirt".

Most time the giclee is an exact reproduction of the painting. No manipulation of the image is done. The painting may even be reprinted on canvas to simulate the original painting. Here's where I am having the problem. The content is not original. This giclee is an exact reproduction of the painting and is NOT original, but a reproduction.

Is it the artist's intent to paint a painting and then sell of reproductions of the painting?
The reproduction looks as good as the original. The giclee may be reproduced in an unlimited edition, as it is an image stored in a computer.

There are a few artists who are actually printing giclee that have original content and are highly manipulated imagery, which can be astounding. These are being presented as pigment prints. Again here the intent is to use this computer enhancement technique to create something new and different. I would consider this art.

Anne Belov, Sentry, Etching, edition: 175

For the novice art collector, it is hard to tell the difference between the two. Some artists and galleries do not disclose the difference. Using a 10x magnifying glass is the only way to tell. To some individuals buying the giclee would be fine. To others it would not be okay. Full disclosure is the only way. Let truth be the light.

I find it is important to educate collectors about the value of art. How it was made, who made it, what kind of technique is employed. What emotion does the art evokes from you?

Gail Gwinn, Fleur de lis, Color intaglio, edition:10

The value of art is in the educated eye of the beholder.

Stop by and educate your eye!

Local resources on printmaking

Seattle Print Arts

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The guilt free zone

Calder mobile, Polychrome dots and brass on red, 1962

Last week I went to Seattle for a conference, finally had time to go the Seattle Art Museum.

I have been feeling guilty about NOT being able to renew my membership. My membership and support of the area museums has been important, but with the economy being what it is, and me owning an art gallery, funding of museum memberships has not been a high priority as it has been in years past. This year has been a year of figuring out how to get through the year and survive as a business.

Running across the street, between meetings and dinner, to SAM I went through the revolving glass doors, walking up the stairs directly to the membership desk and said to the woman behind the desk, "I want to renew my membership but at different level!"
The time was 15 minutes before closing.

Just enough time to take in the Calder exhibition, if I rushed through it. I thought at least I would get to see the show. As the membership clerk handed me my temporary card and a ticket to the Alexander Calder show, she said that I did not have to rush as tonight was a member night and they were open late! Hooray. Timing is every thing!

Taking the escalator to the top floor, noticing the amazing African figures were moved around, the drumming and chanting was still evident, but the whole corridor was no longer about African tribesman and their activities.

There at the end of the corridor was this huge amazing Alexander Calder mobile. It was all white. It was not reacting with the fans that were placed above it to move the air around and a staffer trying to get it to parts of the mobile to spin and sway in the air. It was magnificent. It had a whole room devoted to it. I wanted to blow on it, so parts would move. The mobiles are such beautiful works of movement. I wanted to be able to walk under it and look closely.

I do not remember the title of the mobile but it was marvelous, the sense of creativity and whimsy, just made me smile. I spent the next half hour wondering through this exhibition of large and small scale mobiles, stabiles and even a bit of jewelry. There are miniatures/maquettes of pieces that are wonderful small scale works Kudos to the Shirley’s for sharing this collection with the public.

In the last exhibition space is an old movie featuring the circus characters that Alexander Calder made. He loved the circus, making his cast of characters out of bits of wire and cloth. All these pieces had movement of some sort by either being pulled, pushed, or flying down a wire. Such simple wire toys were crafted with such imagination and simplicity. The film of the Circus has been restored, watching the movie one gets to glimpse the artist surrounded by the world he created. In one of the display cases is a wire toy.

If you are in Seattle, Take the time to see this show. Wonderful!

This is from the press release of the show

"From miniature maquettes, works on paper and jewelry to monumental sculptures and one of the artist�s largest mobiles, this exhibition offers viewers a sense of the range of Alexander Calder�s work from 1927 through the mid-1970s. More than forty original works of art—many of them from Jon and Mary Shirley's extensive collection, which is rarely seen by the public—trace the development and amazing creativity of the American master sculptor, with particular depth in his most celebrated period, the late 1940s. Alexander Calder: A Balancing Act is complemented by a related exhibition of photographs showing the artist at work, organized with the help of the Calder Foundation.
Alexander Calder: A Balancing Act
October 15, 2009–April 11, 2010
SAM Simonyi Special Exhibition Galleries Now on View

Youtube movie on the the circus from 1927Circus Movie
A few links on the works of Alexander Calder: Calder foundation

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Notes from the gallery

Joan Stuart Ross, Little town, mixed media encaustic, 12 x 12

Artstock, this last weekend, the fall festival of the arts was a wonderful event.
The weather co operated. Looked to be a few new faces wondering around the galleries.
Lots of positive feedback on the educational aspect with technique demonstrations going on.

Have not heard much about how sales have been. To be continued.

At waterworks we had a great time with the smell of fresh molten wax. Check out a few photos at waterworks gallery.
Always exciting to have clients and the artist mixing it up, chatting, and most importantly for the public seeing how the artworks are created and get a glimpse of the inner workings the artist's mind. I have noticed the simpler something looks, the more complicated to create.

David Eisenhour,called the other day with some fabulous news, he will be having a show in NYC in November of this year. This is a very exciting event, as having a New York show is seen as very prestigious! The artist is exposed to a much larger viewing audience. If interested in seeing his show, contact me and I will get the details.

Catherine Eaton Skinner, has a show opening in Seattle with a new series of works.
Very beautiful and Zen like mixed media encaustic images.

Locally, at the IMA Island Museum of Art, a small sculpture show is currently up. This exhibition is a good cross section of the local sculpture scene with representation from all the islands in San Juan County including by Tom Small, Matthew Palmer to list a few. If in town stop by and visit.

As the weather is turning a bit cooler, and the fall foliage is making it's appearance, at the gallery I am starting to gather artists for the gallery's Annual Holiday Show, opening Thanksgiving weekend with new works by Island favorites Jaime Ellsworth [check this out, we are the fall back cover of Art Access [woo woo & thanks to Jaime] Tom Small.

Enjoy the fall leaves and the golden light that is truly a Northwest experience!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall - It's here

Just returned from driving to Lake Chelan to deliver and install a painting.

For the client it saved shipping and for me it was an excuse for a fall drive.

My favorite drive in Washington State is Route 20. Once in the mountains, the islands left behind, the world seems so vast. SO beautiful and we travel thru it so fast.

Driving on this road is very Zen. The sky reflected in the lake water. The turquoise color glows, almost surreal. The way the asphalt curves flow, how the mountains seem to reach the sky. The forest is turning colors. A bit of yellow, not much red. Most leaves were still on the trees. Lots of shades of green but mostly that deep foresty green.

The house sits upon a hill overlooking the vast lower dog leg of Lake Chelan. It was finished a few years ago. The owners, a lovely couple with grown children, have taken up collecting art. Like many collectors, I have the pleasure of working with, they are eclectic and diverse in their tastes, but their paintings are about capturing the beauty of the land.

The painting, a fabulous large landscape by Tim Schumm was purchased for the living room, as the focal point over the fire place. Upon hanging the painting changed the room, bringing inside the natural exterior colors. This allowed me to rehang a major portion of their collection. With the introduction of a new piece of art, others paintings and objects needed to be moved around. This experience can be somewhat challenging, yet rather rewarding as a new perspective is achieved.

This brings me to the topic of rotating your artwork. I do this in my own home twice a year.

Here's the concept.

In the spring, you start to go outside more.The outdoor world is just starting to get all that color. I hang most of my black & white images and less colorful works on my prime walls.

In the fall, the indoor season with lots of shades of grey begins. Now is the time to hang the more colorful paintings.The more demanding works, as one will be spending lots of time indoors.

So I would suggest when we remember to change the batteries in our smoke detectors , we should also remember to rotate and rearrange the art in our homes.

So to the changing of the seasons and artwork!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Artist Collectors Appreciation Dinner

Last Saturday, I drove over to the studio of David Eisenhour located in Port Hadlock on the Olympic Peninsula. Leaving Friday Harbor on the 10.25 sailing, two ferry rides later I arrived on the other side via the Kingston run.

Driving the small highways and the crossing on the new and improved Hood Canal Bridge, the town of Port Hadlock was discernible by the 4 way intersection complete with gas stations and fruit stands.

The last fruits of summer were evident by the boxes upon boxes of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Almost there. I visited David's studio three years previous, things were starting to look familiar.

Two old dogs lay in the middle of the street. Drove slowly between the dogs, down the street, they did not bother to get up or bark.
They were tired, and besides, my car still smells dog.

On the right I notice this remarkable tall sculpture standing next to David's newly improved studio.
The new work, Unfolding Milkweed is worked cast steel with 15 ft tall 1/2 inch rods coming out of the top. Over a period of time, David will drive a wooden wedge into the rods to get them to spread out and unfurl.
The work was awesome.

So began the 1st Annual Collector Appreciation Dinner at the his studio. David and his wonderful wife Heidi, fabulous cooks that they are, planned a bountiful dinner with marinated lamb, white salmon, fresh vegetables, potatoes, carefully chosen cheese, and a delightful selection of wines. The kitchen crew was a labor of love. It showed.
I was curious. My impressions are of a solid base of friends and collectors helping to nurture an artist and his vision. I have represented David's work for 10 years. I believe in his portrayal and presentation of his world. His commitment to, as he says "make the invisible world of nature, visible".

Wondering thru the studio there are a few new works, the nautilus fountain, the orchid, and old favorites dock seed, the daisy seeds, the star pod. Out in the field next to the house there stands the magnificent Ibex.

David & Heidi, thank you for sharing.

PS the midnight boccie ball game rocked!

more photos are posted

Friday, July 24, 2009

Caress the details, the divine details

I was reading the book, Writing down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg.

The quote, Caress the details, the divine detailsby Vladimir Nabokov.

Just made me stop. This thought made me tingle.

I thought about this.

I realized how true for me, this is.

It is all about the details.
The vividness of the details populate our stories.

The intersection of our lives.
The space between us that we meet in.
The sharing of each others present.
The resonance of touch.

It would be the journey not the end.
All this leads to a path.

SO many divine details in my world.

The way a painting is hung.
How this painting works with the painting next to it.

The way halogen light bounces off a surface.
The way incandescent light reacts with the color.

Natural light can be so harsh during the day. Yet so soft at twilight.
The way the pinks, gold, pale turquoises and violets light up the sky.

Sometimes lingering for minutes.

Color and light are such key components of painting and sculpture.

The way stone catches and edits its surroundings landscape.
The endless reflections possibly with polished surfaces.
The way a cut is crafted, the dark and the light of it.

Steel intersecting with stone.
Bronze edges with concrete.
Glass with the whole street reflected in it.

The flowers defining the windows
The sculpture defining the flowers.

In my world these divine details occur daily.

Stop by and see the new sculpture by Tom Small entitled Stargazer, Granite and Steel installed on the Argyle Street entrance. The gallery in creating a small outdoor space for sculpture, enables the details of three sculptors and their visions to be enjoyed on the street in uptown Friday Harbor.


Friday, July 17, 2009


Saturday, July 11, 2009

SO Much Art

This weekend on San Juan Island, there is so much art going on.

At Gallery San Juan, Barbara and a few other artists are opening up a show,
Women with texture and one man with flowers."

Experience the texture and colors of hand picked Northwest women artists

and one man with flowers. Also enjoy food of color and texture.

Artists: BJ Dollahite, Barbara DePirro, Jocelyn Russell, Teri Jo Summer,

Ann Walbert and Kevin Roth.

Down the street, or rather up the street on Sunday, Arctic

Raven in conjunction with the San Juan Island Library and Skagit Valley College will host, "In Creation the Raven Sings" at San Juan Island Grange Hall on Sunday, July 12, 2 PM. Acclaimed Northwest Coast Native artists Rande Cook and Francis Dick will bring their culture alive by connecting the elements of art and song in a presentation. For more info call 360.378.

And uptown at waterworks gallery, the gallery features new water and landscape paintings Tim Schumm, an impressionistic painter. Stop by the gallery and meet him on Saturday,July 11, from 4 to 8. Some beautiful water lily paintings and a collection of lively simple daisy paintings. Stop by and visit the galleries of San Juan Island.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

It may be art but is it stimulus?

Recently reading Sculpture Magazine, I read an editorial from the Chairman of the Board of the International Sculpture Center, Josh Kanter.
Josh proposes a case for looking at the ongoing argument of supporting the arts or not supporting in new light.

I too, think it is time to retire the argument. The arts are the soul of a creative society.

It may be art but is it stimulus? There has been a lot of press about the arts lately. Some articles focus on the funding difficulties facing nonprofits in the current economic environment, others on the dwindling number of nonprofits and the resulting loss of art opportunities for children and society. Still others discuss whether the arts—and public support—are stimulative.

However, I would like to argue for intellectual honesty in the discussion.

Is spending on the arts stimulative? What, after all, is stimulus?

To read the entire article more

The debate continues .
Published with permission of Sculpture Magazine.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Get outside

This beautiful weather makes me want to spend more time outdoors. With this in mind, I ponder creating spaces for sculpture outside in our personal environments. Now is the time of year to install sculpture in our gardens, in our woods or on our decks. The ability to interact with artworks outdoors is not a new concept.

In centuries past, we were shown gardens filled with sculpture in the somewhat formal landscapes of the English, Italians or French. Themes for sculptures might range from human or animal form, humorous, abstract to utilitarian. Sculpture creates scale in our landscape. Depending on placement, create a unexpected surprise in a landscaped vista.

Today, we enjoy sculpture in a natural and or created environment, perhaps a less formal style than previous designed gardens. Our gardens like our walls of our homes are a personal expression. Indoors and out, living with the beauty of art, is a constant theme.

This past week, I helped with 2 sculpture installations. One for a client and one in my own yard. It's all about incorporating sculpture into your environment. The places where art and nature intersect. It is the texture, the ability to touch and how bronze or stone feels to your touch. The light bouncing off the surface. These special places allow us to reflect and to meditate.

Take a look out side. Find a spot for art in your yard. This is a good thing.

Sculpture news:

Walking past the gallery, Winter Mandala, by David Eisenhour is on view. This bronze was recently written up in Sculpture Magazine, June 2009...."loosely referenced Buddhist spirituality, it also suggested the balance between man and the natural world. David taking inspiration from a sand dollar that served as a personal meditative aid, David's larger than life bronze form displays the marine animals' five fold radial symmetry, together with the pores that draw water into internal vascular system and allow it to move, thereby underscoring an important interdependence between the environment and those that live in it "....

Tom Small
will install a new steel and stone sculpture in front of the gallery sometime next week. Pretty exciting to have another beautiful piece of sculpture outside. The gallery has been showing Tom's work for 23 years. Inside the gallery, are a few stone basin sculpture that would be a beautiful addition to any garden.

If you have peeked in the gallery's rear windows, one cannot help but smile at
Barbara Duzan's latest paper mache image sculpture, "I am a star". A black and white dog sits with foot resting on a hand beaded starred ball. The look in this dogs eyes is hard to resist.

[No this one is for indoor only]. And then there were bronze puppies, Yes that 's true. There's one begging for attention, another rolling over, one playing with a butterfly and one just looking at you. They do beg for adoption.

In any weather, we can experience of art in an outdoor environment. get outside and visit a sculpture park, ie Seattle Art Museum Olympic Sculpture Park, the local Wescott Bay Sculpture Park or one of my favorites, Storm King Art Center Sculpture.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

A visit to the garden

Ralph welcomes Georgia & Gail

Every year in Spring, I feel so privileged to visit a few gardens
on Whidbey Island.These visits started many years ago.
The annual garden party created a way to share interests among myself, my staff and a few artists.
While enjoying lunch together,
we talk about art, gardens and plants.

Tree Peony

Driving south to the bottom of Whidbey Island, I stop by Gail Gwinn's place in Coupeville for a studio visit. Her husband Joe Patrick, undertook a huge gardening project last year. This year he is doing the house remodel thing, so not much time left for gardening. This past winter, Joe was able to renovate Gail's studio. It is a beautiful place for Gail to create intaglios or paint in.
Everything had a place and it seemed just right. No garden party here.

Continuing driving south, I stop at Anne Belov's home. Anne built her home at the edge of the woods. It has taken a few years for her gardens to fill in. Her gardens are a beautiful mix of plants, some given from friends and some bought. These plants take turns
flowering thru out the year. Always looking beautiful. No garden party here.

Anne & Gail in the garden

The location of this years party was at Anne's good friend,
Ralph Hastings home.
His fabulous home and gardens are called Froggwell located in Langley. This garden was planted approximately 25 years ago. Lots of design and intent are evident by each of the garden areas. The artistic views down the garden. The egrets nest high in the trees. A place for all types of peonies. A boxwood hedge. A bronze Scottie dog named Kelz. An unkempt section with Columbine and the biggest Trilliums I have ever seen. Lots of Rhododendrons. Maples and many plants whose names I cannot remember, some very unusual. Over the years as plants live and occasionally perish, this garden has evolved. Truly magnificent and stately in an unpretentious manner. This is the place to be the first weekend in August for an art exhibition.

Personally, this garden visit represents the arrival [finally] of SPRING.
Some years not much in bloom, this year the garden is spectacular.

After the garden walking tour led by Ralph, we adjourn to the table.
The delight of sitting in this magnificent garden setting, eating fabulous food,
drinking the occasional glass of Proseco and sharing all sorts of stories.
This is very special to me. This year was cold and a bit wet.
An experience I treasure, a story still unfolding.

The cast of the garden party group
is of Anne Belov, Gail Gwinn,
new to the group, Georgia Gerber.

Pictured from left, Gail Gwinn, standing, me ,Georgia Gerber, Anne Belov and Ralph Hastings

Unfortunately, my fabulous shop girls, Carla Wright and Julie Anderson were unable to join me. Little do they know if this weather holds on, we have agreed to do this garden party again.

Summer hats will be mandatory not rain hats.

Ahhh here's to spring and the beauty of gardens.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Love Always, Live

Somehow this past weekend, I ended up at 2 different theatrical events.
The first one is the San Juan Community Theater's presentation of the Patsy Kline story entitled, Always, Patsy Kline with 2 amazing and talented woman, Kate Schuman as Patsy Kline and Julie Greene as her friend, Louise. The play about the short life of this country singing artist, Patsy Kline was well done. Having a live band of local musicians on stage was fabulous. I did not know that she died as young as she did. What I loved was how the songs touched my heart. The songs were sung with gusto and grace. I gained a greater understanding of this singer's short life as the show was based on the correspondence of these 2 woman over a 2 year period .

This play is up for the next week at the San Juan Community Theater, if in Friday Harbor, go and see it. You can sing , dance and yes even a bit of a cry!

The next day I had the pleasure of getting on the 8 Am boat to the mainland. My idea of fun for Mother's Day was to have an experience to share with my 21 year old son. My choice, the Seattle Opera's presentation of the Marriage of Figaro. I had taken my son to another opera,The Skagit Opera's LaTraviata at McIntyre Hall in Mt Vernon. I wanted to share my enthusiasm of how wonderful the Seattle Opera is at McCaw Hall.
Turns out, I was not alone in my idea of how to spend Mother's Day! [Another story]

The singing was wonderful, the sets were very minimal, and the sounds produces by a live full orchestra are music for my soul! For an opera, it was very funny and contemporary in issues. Love as a theme. Love as an object lesson and love lost and regained. [Hmm no war in this one] I loved it, even though that song [think cartoon] that you think of in Figaro, is really not in the opera the Marriage of Figaro. My son, sat through the opera, though he did admit to dozing off. I asked him what he thought. He stated, Mom, I loved the music, but it took so long to get through it! Hmm to me this was enjoyment. I will find a new artful experience for us to share on Mother's Day next year.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Unleashed - Catherine Eaton Skinner

Warm and sunny. Gorgeous day in the neighborhood !

I have spent the day,hanging,talking,typing and cleaning up here at the gallery. The vacuuming is yet to be done! Catherine dropped off the books for the show. The gallery looks great !

A bit of background on this show I am opening on Saturday. In fall of 2006, this exhibition of mixed media encaustic paintings Unleashed was premiered. There were approximately 30 paintings in this show. It was a wonderful exhibition of paintings of the animals that dwell in the wilderness of the landscape. The range of animals ran from a Yak to Lizards, Zebra to Monkeys, Antelope to Polar Bear. The show was a compilation of images. Some animals where seen in total, others an element, specifically an eye.

Saturday's show celebrates the book Unleashed, published in conjunction with the University of Washington Press and the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. All paintings from the original exhibition are featured in the book. The book retails for $ 50. Catherine will sign and dedicate your copy.

Selected mixed media encaustic paintings on view at the gallery and
posted on the gallery's web site

Selected animals from the book, have been reproduced in an edition of 9 prints.These images are pigment ink prints pulled on rag paper that measures 36 x 24. A few are hanging at the gallery. Stop by and see the show

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Concepia, The NEW gallery in Town

Last weekend, I went to the first in a series of photographers talks at John Sinclair's gallery called Concepia (

It is located above the ferry lot in that (not quite new building and across the street from the Market Chef). A small brightly lit, very inviting
space that was hosting it's opening show with works by Randy Laybourne, a young photographer. This is his first gallery show. The
theme of the show was his travels from Southern California to Vancouver, BC.

The featured photographs are all about the roads less traveled featuring the odd, and the unusual. Reminds me of many road trips I have taken. Randy is a good conversationalist. We chatted travels, and cameras. I learned from Randy about a technique of shooting traditional slide film and cross processing; i.e. the slide film is developed as photo/neg film. It leads to uncanny color results, sometimes the color is pushed but magic occurs !

As an artist/photographer Randy's favorite cameras are old SLR Nikon's especially the FE. He is not much of a digital fan. If he needs a digital camera, he borrows his dads' big Nikon. As a young
photographer his attitude to new experiences are open. He is not entrenched in technique. His works are reminiscent of past travel documentaries, yet Randy ad's his own unique perspective on the subject matter.

Definitely a show worth catching in Friday Harbor . This show is up until May 29th.
Gallery hours are Tuesday ~ Saturday 10 to 5, other times by appointment.
Concepia's address is 232 "A" St. #7, Friday Harbor, 360.378.3686.

Kudos's to John for opening up a new art space in these interesting times.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Georgia Gerber - Rabbits, seals & more

Earlier this week in cold and rainy weather, I welcomed a new artist to the gallery. Georgia Gerber, an artist whose works brings a smile to your face. She has the ability to capture animals at ease with a grace and a beautiful clean line quality.

Georgia's husband Randy is in charge of all installations, [How lucky can you get !].
SO this past week, Randy and his able helper, Kelly loaded the bunnies and a few other bronze sculptures into his truck with lots of tools to insure the ease of installation. They were hopping the weather would cooperate, as luck would have it , only a few sprinkles of rain as they were finishing up. I photographed the process and will share a few images.

When you walk past the gallery you will now break into a smile when welcomed to with these sweet bunnies! Other works by Georgia are on display at the gallery and will be posted to my website shortly.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

What's new

What a funny morning, It is April fool's and the weather concurs. It snowed this morning. Nothing stuck in my neighborhood.

Tomorrow, Thursday, April 2, the gallery is reopening. I am some new info to share on artists
represented by the gallery.

Got to visit the studio of Anne Belov, and returned to the gallery with a few amazing paintings. She makes the chaos of a kitchen almost look holy! With her homage to Vermeer, her color
palette is amazing.

On a side note, in these interesting times, Anne has started to write a blog on cartooning.
She populates her blog with a quirky collection of Pandas [there's a reason. read her blog] and cats. The blog is being dictated to her by her cat!

Here is the blog.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The arts & business

Was just about ready to go to bed, when I started reading an online arts paper that I like, and here I am a long time later [you know how these things just kinda happen] . I found an interestting ideas about arts and business to read.
So here it is from an The bulletin .
It is a conversation starter!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

March 15

For spring being a week away today's snowfall was odd, especially since the snow looked like that foam used to spray on fires. Wide and inconsistent shapes, lopsided and fluffy looking falling out of the sky and doing a left tilting spiraling fall to the ground.

Yesterday, I spent the afternoon in Ballard, watching the pouring rain from the inside of my driving car. The wipers could not keep up with the pouring rain. Parked on a side street and waited till the rain calmed down. No longer in buckets, but now in tablespoons.

Walked around the corner to the closest Wifi coffee house and ordered my beverage of choice. A double Americano with room.

About to sit down at a cozy wall table with an outlet, and a forlorn parent with a stroller and 2 ensconced kids and I spotted the same table. I say, Go ahead it is yours. I settle in with a large table of young college student doing their works. All are plugged in and keyboarding.

I boot up. Old tech, take a while. The image of my 2 favorite dog friends just stare back at me without any icons. Drink coffee, late in the afternoon, okay so it's a partial, decaf.

Surveying the room, glance at the windowed storefront, it's pouring buckets again outside. The level of chatter was a slow murmur. The rain was louder !
People engaged , face to face, not thru their technology.
Drinking coffee, munching snacks and drinking each other in.

Live signal, check email. Check out the building with the open studios I am here to visit.
Building C,. A good mix of mostly 2 dimensional art , with a couple of 3 d artists. SOme abstract, some narrative, some still life. For me interacting with art is always a good experience. SOme pieces produce a recognizable feeling of joy, dislike or even neutrality. Some studios offer up a bit of food and wine, especially the box of wine.

Saturday's weather caused a damper of the builging as it is an old subdivided wooden building that is cold and drafty in this weather. Even with a large weather curtain at the opening entrance, the winds whips thru the building. As I wonder the space with my lime green guide, there are pockets of warmth and color. A glass of wine seems to help with the freezing weather and loosening up the conversations with artists and the occasional wandering passerby.

Most of the artists I encounter are either middle aged woman or fairly young men . Only one middle aged man artist. His name is Michael Dickter. I currently represent his work, having done so for 5 years.

In this time his works have evolved from the hard edged linear forms to a soft sensual rhythmical composition. It was great to hang out and chat. See the new works and talk about art and life.

I would offer this observation, We start with what we know and travel uncharted ways to find what we do not know. The challenge of the paint opens up new possibilities in the work.

Always learning. Refreshing, renewing.

Sunday, ferry riding back to friday harbor 2.10

Monday, March 9, 2009

Just returned from a 3050 mile road trip that took me from San Juan Island to Palm Springs,CA. Wonderful time driving 1-5, me and the hundreds of other motorists. I caught up on my listening to This American Life, Bill Mahr, Science Friday and a few other shows that I don't seem to be current on. The weather got warmer and sunnier the further south I drove, Mount Shasta was not enveloped in a white blanket. Took a leisurely drive of only 500 miles a day. Stopped and visited friends on the way. The final destination was the Rivera Resort for a TED conference. Four days of mind boggling brain food and brain candy. So much excitement, intensity, brain power and positive insanity in one space. It was an amazing experience.
[check out]

While in Palm Springs, I went to see the galleries in Palm Dessert.That city hosts an annual sculpture walk that is funded tax dollars. It was great to be walking down this wide boulevard that had a median strip composed of grass with large sculptures prominently placed.

The city of Palm Desert has the El Paseo Art Galleries that sponsor an Artwalk the first Thursday , October thru May, in the evening from 5 - 9 Pm. They cooperatively publish a brochure that promotes this activity.

After seeing the diversity of art genres represented in this tourist city, I returned to Friday Harbor with a renewed spirit . Perhaps in the future , the galleries located in Friday Harbor can create an Artwalk for the months of June - September. More road stories....