Thursday, August 4, 2011

NWS 2011 All Member Show

The NWS All Member Show was held in San Pedro from May 25th to June 12th, 2011.  Juror, Marciano Martinez, selected an excellent and diverse exhibition!! 

One of my favorite artists, Frank Eber, was represented with his painting, Lunch Hour, NYC.  Frank has been collecting honors around the watercolor world with acceptances in several shows including a win of the Anne and Samuel Seeman Memorial Award in the 2011 TWSA Exhibition.

Frank, Penny Hill, and I posed for a fan-club photo of Nick Simmons whose Fresh Sushi was displayed as part of the NWS Permanent Collection of former Annual Exhibition Best of Show Purchase Award paintings. (Photo courtesy of Penny Hill, Artist and Fun Person)

Many favorite artists were included: Geri Medway, Fealing Lin, George James, Eric Weigardt, Judy Betts, Nel Dorn Byrd, Keiko Tanabe, Harry Shields,  Tom Fong, ...many others.  The painting, Muir Woods, by Lei Chi was super impressive in its photo-realism.

Congrats to NWS and Joy Gonzalez for an excellent All Member Show!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Bright Future

Our youngest son is one terrific kid.  We adopted him when he was just two days old and I'm humbled to be able to call him my son. He will graduate from high school in June, and we are so proud of him.  He's a straight A student since starting school and is talented at many things.  His witty personality lights up any room, but what we are most proud of is his character.  I honestly don't know what I'll do when he leaves to go to college, but I know his future is bright.  I caught this image of him while on a sunset cruise in San Francisco last year and have tried to portray it in watercolor. 

Dear Son,

I didn't give you the gift of life,
But in my heart I know.
The love I feel is deep and real,
As if it had been so.

For us to have each other
Is like a dream come true!
No, I didn't give you
The gift of life,
Life gave me the gift of you.

--- Unknown

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Getty Up!

My husband and I spent this afternoon visiting the beautiful Getty Museum with our granddaughter.  We tried to make it a fun experience while sneaking in some art education.  Before the museum visit, I showed her photos of four different paintings that we would see: Wheatstacks, Snow Effect by Monet, Irises by Van Gogh, La Promenade by Renoir, Van Tromp, Going About to Please His Master by Turner. When we got the Getty, we started with an exciting tram ride suspended over the hillside. At the top, the docents handed her cards of other pieces to look for.  This proved to be a good interest-sparking activity for she was eager to embark on the hunt for the paintings and sculptures. Kylie and Uma both LOVED the Turner paintings.  I knew the trip was well worth it when she excitedly pointed out another painting in a different room - saying, "Uma, that's another Turner!!"  It was a new acquisition of the Getty called Modern Rome. I have a book about Turner by Michael Kitson that describes his use of light perfectly: To create a pattern of light and colour independent of solid objects was the great endeavour of Turner's last years.  And in order to extract the utmost from it, he sought out as many situations as possible in which light and fleeting weather effects took on a visible form: that is to say, in which they were not merely media through which objects might be seen but entities which became visible in themselves. Turner's magnificently portrayed light was a perfect pairing with Monet's experiments with haystacks. Examples of both from the Getty are in the photos.  We talked about how the artist used light to guide the eyes through the painting as well as soft/hard areas. I was so pleased when Kylie could show me the areas of other paintings where the light/dark contrast showed the center of interest.  After our indoor scavenger hunt, we walked around the azalea labryinth. Papa and Kylie got "into" abstract art, and we took time to stop and watch a hummingbird flitting around in the beautiful masses of Bird of Paradise on a city overlook veranda between the buildings. Our trip lasted about three hours, including a snack lunch, which was just about the perfect length for a six-year old's attention span and a tired Uma's energy span, as well.  We did leave time for a couple of rolls down the grassy hillside to finish off the day.  The Getty is FREE to all and truly amazing from start to finish.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Joseph Raffael

One of my "Bucket List" dreams was to one day travel to France to see the astounding works of Joseph Raffael. Soka University is presently displaying a collection of his best works right here in Aliso Viejo, California!  I would love to know how they transported these giant watercolor gems. Sometimes dreams fizzle as reality, but there was no disappointment in viewing these true masterpieces.
Brilliant colors abound on giant sunlit florals that reach from the paper.  Blue skies back a massive branch teeming with white blossoms.  On one particularly amazing piece, Raffael gives us a glimpse of his studio with a wall of an artwork hodgepodge beside a french door leading to the garden.  A massive birdcage anchors the side and gives depth to the scene.  Another endearing portrait of his wife, Lannis, touches one's heart.  Buy a plane ticket to California if you need to, but don't miss the opportunity to view this amazing show while it's in America. Soka will continue the exhibition through April 15th. It's open Monday through Friday for FREE. Soka University - Joseph Raffael Art Exhibition

Merwin Altfeld Retrospective

The National Watercolor Society hosted the Merwin Altfeld Retrospective Show from January 15th through February 6th. The family of this former NWS President provided a collection of his work for display. Merwin passed away in 2007, but his joy for art was obvious with bold colors and whimsical uses of shapes. The variety of the show was fantastic.
A great group gathered for the opening reception, including several members of Altfeld's family. His sister was an especially honored guest.

Other guests included artists Fealing Lin and Devorah Friedman, as well as NWS members and art collectors scouting the show.

NWS President, Mike Bailey, and NWS Past President, Chris Van Winkle, both paid tribute to Altfeld while Caroline Van Winkle graciously served a delicious reception.


The exhibit included Altfeld's characteristic boat paintings and figurative works in both color and ink. I was especially touched to see photos of the artist painting at various ages of his life.