Nov 30, 2012

Westport Art Center - Muse Show

When I heard that Helen Klisser During will talk about her trip to Africa, I dropped everything and went to the Art Talk. I'd be thrilled to visit this continent.

Another reason I went to see the Talk full of images and videos from Helen's fascinating trip was that I wanted to see the Muse exhibition, featuring Paul Cadmus and Jane Sutherland. Jane talked about her drawings and paintings that are featured at the Westport Art Center first. Her pieces are based on Degas' statue of a 14 year old ballerina that was his muse at the time. Here is another write up about Jane's drawings and paintings - an interesting read including photographs of Jane's works.

Paul Cadmus, an american artist, mastered his figurative drawings. One just has to marvel at his workmanship. This exhibition is worth going to see. Read more about the show HERE.

I took few images with my android (see below), but there are far better images on internet. If you do not want to do your own search, click on the links provided in my text.

My images of Cadmus' drawings are not good - too much glare from the gallery windows

Jane Sutherland's art

Helen Klisser During and Jane Sutherland

Jane's drawings

Jane with her painting and  one of her drawings

Helen was able to get Chuck Close's painting for the show 

and Picasso

Nov 27, 2012

While you are shopping something special for your loved ones for this holiday season, do not forget to visit galleries, artists lofts, or libraries that display art. I think that being surrounded by art will make you feel more festive than stores with electronic gadgets. Besides that, you may even find some nice precious gift that is hand made by a local artist. I am sure you know someone that would appreciate something special, even if it is small.

In Easton Public Library, Dolly Curtis curated an exhibition of handmade holiday cards - stop by to see local artists' designs. See write up about this exhibit in this newspaper.

Happy Holidays to all.

Sep 15, 2012

Westport Art Center - The Show Where You Could Not Move

The opening reception for the show "Foodies" in Westport Art Center was something "else". You almost thought that you are in Manhattan. It was very crowded, cool, hip and artsy. No one had to drive for an "hour plus" to NYC to enjoy the best of the best art creations, to have a fun, or to catch up the latest news with friends. My dearest family, my friends and I saw a lot of quality art.

If you haven't seen it and you live in the area, visit this well run art center. The show will be open until first week in November.

You do not want to miss any reception at the Westport Art Center

With friends and family

With family

My friend Andrea

Sep 8, 2012

Westport Art Center - "Foodies" Show

To all my fans, friends and family (wow three "f"s) ---

I see that you kept your fingers (and toes) crossed because my painting "Eva" got into the show. So, if you live near Westport, CT or are visiting the area, please come and join all the local artists at the opening show on Friday, September 14, 2012 from 6pm till 8pm.

I'll be happy to see you there and catch up on the latest news from your life.

Sep 3, 2012

Eva - My Submission Painting For WAC Called "Foodies"

Tomorrow, I have quite a busy busy day. First, I am attending a four hour class in the morning, and in the afternoon I have to take my "Eva" (the painting on the left) to the Westport Arts Center. Hopefully, it will be accepted into a show called "Foodie". There are a lot of very talented artist living in this area, so my chance is very slim.

For more info about the show click HERE.

So, dear fans - keep your fingers crossed like this XX and wish me luck. Tfuj, tfuj.

Jul 22, 2012

A Stuffed Bold Eagle In Your Art Projects And Law

To all fellow artists - do not include a stuffed Bold Eagle in your art - it is a criminal act. You cannot sell it, keep it, buy it, barter it, transport it, import it or export it - alive or dead.

Read THIS interesting article in the New York Times, what Mrs. Sonnabend’s children are dealing with by inheriting their mother's (the art dealer) “Canyon,” by Robert Rauschenberg.

Credit: The image on the left was published in NYTimes and is property of Rauschenberg Estate and Licensed by VAGA, NY.

Jul 17, 2012

Drawing From My Imagination

I was kind of fooling around today with my pen and paper after I was inspired by some illustrators. I love "LOVE" as a theme and this is one of my takes on love - "Tree Of Love" (there is not enough of love in the world, we could always use some more for sure). Too bad I used a paper just for drawing and not a watercolor, I could color it in. It would look co much nicer.

I guess I should visit my favorite place, an art store, for a perfect paper for my drawing/water color projects.

Jul 12, 2012

I Sold My Latest Drawings

I was very happy to learn that I sold four drawings today. Unfortunately, I forgot to take images before I sent them out to a new owner. Silly me. But I still may get some snapshots at a later date.

May 8, 2012

Art Critique For My Class

Richard Diebenkorn’s “Girl on a Terrace” 

     I've been to the Neuberger Museum of Art at Purchase College several times in the past, and every time I visit this hidden sanctuary, I am impressed by the amount and quality of art they are able to offer in such a small space. When I walked up the wide staircase to the second floor a couple of days ago and looked around at the Roy R. Neuberger Collection, the first painting that really caught my eye was Richard Diebenkorn's, "Girl on a Terrace.” I’d never heard of the artist before, but something about this painting made me want to discover who he was. And, I thought, what better way to learn about this artist than to write my art critique about his "Girl" for my art class.
     Upon researching Richard Diebenkorn, I came across his response to William Wilson's sad remark that he (Wilson) cannot paint:

Of course you can't paint. Nobody can paint. I can't paint. 
You just go ahead and do it anyway. It is the marvel of this 
enterprise that you set out to do something utterly impossible.
You must forget about time, money, fame, loved ones and all 
the rest and just stand there putting it on and scraping it off until 
you achieve the impossible. That's how it works. 

This quote has value for me as an artist because I feel the same way as Wilson. I feel like I cannot measure up to many talented artists. Sometimes I ask myself if I should paint at all. I may be able to learn the technique, but there is lot more to painting then just applying the paint. Sometimes when I stand in front of a painting and study how the artist made it, it looks so easy, yet it was he or she who thought of the technique and especially of the story. Not me.
     Richard Diebenkorn (1922-1993), one of the founding members of the abstract expressionist school of art, was born in Portland, Oregon, but lived most of his life in California, although he traveled a bit, too. Diebenkorn’s interest in art was encouraged by his grandmother Florence Stephens ever since he was a small boy. After serving in the Marine Corps from 1943-45, Diebenkorn majored in art at Stanford University. He was influenced by Edward Hopper, Elmer Bischoff, Clyfford Still, Mark Rothko, and surrealist painters Joan Miro and Arshile Gorky. In his early years he produced mostly organic non-representational abstract paintings. From about 1955 he started to work on representational imagery, and he became a figurative painter. In the mid sixties, after a visit to Russia, where he went to view Henri Matisse paintings, he returned to geometrical abstracts. In over twenty years he created about 140 abstract paintings in a series called "Ocean Park.”
     "Girl on a Terrace," an oil painting on canvas, was painted with brush in 1956. The main focus of this painting is the figure of a girl. Her body was painted from the head to just below her calves. She is turned slightly sideways, with her back exposed at an angle and the right side of her body turned toward the viewer. Her left arm is bent behind her back, and she is holding her right arm with her left hand. The artist painted the right side of the girl’s profile. She is wearing a long skirt with vertical blue and white stripes and a brown sleeveless blouse.
     There is another person in the painting in the upper left area, but the viewer can see only a partial figure -- a torso and a leg. The head seems to continue beyond the canvas. This second person, who gives the impression of being male, is wearing a yellow top and blue pants. If the viewer looks toward the bottom left, he may recognize a drinking glass standing on a table, and a folding chair with light blue legs, next to the girl. In the middle of the canvas, just above the horizontal center line, the artist has placed a light blue area, perhaps a pond, and an indistinguishable object to the right of the pond. These two objects are divided by a broad white line which continues diagonally in a pink line across the grass and toward the two figures in the foreground.
     Diebenkorn used mainly primary and secondary colors in the painting -- deep blue sky, green grass, yellow shirt, red and orange terrace. However, there are also neutral colors -- the girl's black hair and her brown blouse -- and white and gray colors were used to paint the table. Perhaps to add some oddity, Diebenkorn used cyan and pink colors. His colors are mostly saturated, but on several occasions, for example in painting the girl’s shadow, he used black to add some deeper value. There is a nice balance in the use and placement of cool and warm colors, such as a yellow-green color next to a blue one, or yellow and orange colors placed next to a red with blue undertones and cyan color.
     Upon careful examination the viewer may notice that the artist created a visual dimension by using several techniques, for example the layering of colors or varying the thickness / thinness of his oil paint. We can see a yellow and blue color beneath the grass, pink color seeping through the yellow top, or several different colors beneath the white stripes of the girl's skirt to name a few. At the same time, dimensionality was created by using several shades of the same color -- such as blues in the sky and greens in the grass, while the terrace foreground dimension was created by using several different colors -- yellow, orange, red and a few shades of brown transitioning into pink.
     Then a dimensional look was created with the use of a thick layer of paint (such as in the the sky), a thin layer (the girl's right arm), and no paint on the canvas at all (for example, the foot of the other person, or an area at the bottom of the canvas). There is even paint scraped off in the lower left corner, which seems to be part of the chair. The drinking glass is the only area where Diebenkorn created a three dimensional look with the use of a very thick textured layer of paint.
     Another way the artist added dimension to the painting was by using organic shapes and lines. The viewer can observe a line that starts wide at the table on the left side and continues diagonally, intersected by the girl's body, toward the lower right side. As the line continues, it is getting thinner, thus looking like a triangle. The artist used a few rectangular shapes, for example the sky and pond. Oval shapes are represented by the girl's head and table. There is a pink line in the middle of the canvas that is short, but again is painted diagonally from the girl's body toward the top right corner, which is then extended further with a short white line. This pink / white line seems to be almost ninety degrees to the wide thick line. The viewer can notice the cross in a cyan / white color (the legs of the chair), and many vertical white / blue lines that are part of the girl's skirt.
     Since Diebenkorn positioned the girl slightly off center to the left, and the other person and furniture to the left of the girl, he made the painting on the left side very "heavy," thus vertically asymmetrical. Yet, the indistinguishable object on the right side is balancing the painting. By looking at this masterpiece, one could say that the painting is balanced horizontally, because the artist divided the painting into three major and nearly equal horizontal parts consisting of the sky, a grassy area, and the foreground / terrace. If the viewer notices how the yellow color was placed (the man’s shirt, the indistinguishable object on the right side of the painting, and the area to the left of the chair), and if he tries to connect these three yellow areas with imaginary lines, he will get a triangle, taking space over nearly the entire canvas. Another way the artist balanced the painting was by using a strong blue color for the sky, which has a horizontal feel, and then painting vertical blue stripes on the girl’s skirt at the bottom of the canvas. The thickness / thinness of lines and the many colors in the painting create a sense of variety, while the stripes in the dress create a rhythm with their white and blue alternating colors.
     When I saw the painting for the first time, the striped blue / white paints grabbed my attention with their strong geometrical energy. I have a soft spot for stripes, just like the artist. But as I was looking at the painting, I realized that it has quite a melancholic feel. It could be because of the chosen color palette. Or, perhaps it is because of the expression on the girl's face or how her head is tilted. One just must wonder, "Where is she looking?”
     I do not feel just a melancholy, but a tension, too. As if the two people were quarreling. Each of them is standing and facing in the opposite direction. The painted space between them is very narrow, and part of it is unpainted, sort of raw. Then if I look at the chair I feel a loneliness. Who was sitting on the now empty chair before and having a drink?
     There is an untold story in this painting, which reminds me of a European movie where there is no ending, and the viewer walks out of the movie theater wondering how the story ended. Then he / she creates his own ending. In this painting there is no ending, and anyone who stays and looks at the painting for a while may end up creating their own story with their own ending.
     Who knows, maybe I will take a canvas, mix some oil paints, and do the same thing that Richard Diebenkorn did all his life. I will place on layers of paint in different planes, some thick, some thin, some none at all. Then I will scrape some paint off and add some more paint on. And maybe at the end, even if I cannot paint, I will create a story with no end. Then I will hang the painting on my wall, sit in my chair with a glass of wine and I will think of different endings to my story.

Photo Jim Frank,

Also, huge thanks to my dear husband (my biggest fan), who corrected my grammar :-)

Apr 20, 2012

St. Patricks School in Bedford NY Is Raising Money

Today, April 20, 2012, is a fund raising show in St. Patricks School in Bedford, NY. Many local artists donated their art to be sold. If you live around Bedford or are visiting the area, AND are an ART COLLECTOR, this is a great way to support private school and purchase one of the artistic gems. You never know - perhaps you will purchase a future famous artist and that piece of art will have a great value :-)

I have donated three paintings and I am hoping that all three of them will sell.

Apr 19, 2012

Art In The Country - Juried Regional Group Exhibition

Great news today. One of my paintings has been accepted to another show with Easton Arts Council in Easton, CT. Opening Reception is May 12, 2012 in Easton Library Community Room, Easton CT 7pm-10pm.

The juror was Daniel Mark Duffy, an achieved artist. Time to celebrate again. Yey!

Apr 10, 2012

Norwalk Community College Exhibition - Spring 2012

I wish I would have more time to see more art. But when ever I am walking near by a gallery or any place that exhibits, I go in - if only for five minutes. 

It happens that I take classes at NCC in Norwalk, CT. It is quite nice community college with great teachers, I've been always happy with any subject I take be it accounting, art, economics, computers..... Or perhaps I get along with my teachers and do all my home-works, LOL?
Anyway, since I take classes at NCC, I always visit an area in the lobby, where they exhibit art. This spring they are showing art done by high school students. And two of the exhibited art works just stand out - that is I love them. They deserve a viral recognition. Hey I like this expression "viral recognition" - I think, I should start a special link called "VIRAL RECOGNITION" for the artists with talent, IMHO.

Mar 29, 2012

Project "Master Artist" - Nicolas Poussin

I've been taking painting class with a wonderful artist and great art teacher (actually a professor) Steve DiGiovanni who he has been quite inspiring personality to me in the past two months. His ways of teaching and his insight at many different artists, their work and their techniques opened horizons not only for me, but for many students in my class as well. Now that I am finished with the introduction, I would like to share one project that we were recently working on for couple of weeks.

FirstSteve gave us several names of old masters. We had to chose our favorite painting of one master. After I saw many paintings on line, I settled on a detail from "Triumph of Neptune and Amphitrite" by Nicolas Poussin. I found out that the painting was commissioned by Cardinal Richelieu (which I found interesting) and which is in possession of Philadelphia Art Museum.

The next step was to paint an 8in x10in painting of the chosen master. This study was supposed to help us to understand the light and shadow, the color, while at the same time to teach us a bit about figure painting as the old masters did it. We didn't have to be accurate in making and exact copy.

My study of Poussin's "Triumph of Neptune and Amphitrite"

Couple weeks later we brought our small "master paintings" to school and had a class discussion about what we learned from this practical study (above).

Then, Steve showed us several famous artists' interpretations of other famous artists. For example, Pablo Picasso's "Las Meninas. After Velazquez", which was take on DiegoVelazquez's "Las Meninas" (The Maids of Honor) painting. See below.

Pablo Picasso's "Las Meninas. After Velazquez"

Diego Velazquez. Las Meninas (The Maids of Honor), 1656

And as you probably guessed it, we had to interpret our chosen painting in our way on a 30in x 40in canvas.

In my early twenties I was in "love" with pointillism. I had attempted this technique once, but nothing ever came out of it. So, this time I got a chance to use this method again and to depict the old master's classical painting with a different approach.
Last summer I saw Seurat's paintings in MoMA, so I was somewhat familiar with his work. I went to our library to borrow art books about Seurat to remind me of his style some more. And I "googled" images of his paintings. Then I set to work on my project.

First I prepped my canvas and then outlined figures. Then I mixed my colors and started making dot after dot after dot after dot...... For many hours each day.

One week later I could see some development. Some of the background was done, as well as some of the women and sea creatures they were riding (the image below).

About three weeks later, after spending on it approximately 40+ hours per week, I took my nearly finished painting to school for a discussion. It still needs some fine tuning, such as leashes for the sea creatures, which are missing. However, Steve accepted the work as is. And did you know that Seurat would paint each of his paintings for about a year. When I was working on mine, I realized, that you really have to spend quite a bit of time on this particular technique - you need to let the paint dry in between. Otherwise it just doesn't look (or come out) right (or as nice as Seurat's).

And this is my almost finished product

Feb 23, 2012

Painting With A Palette Knife

My computer died and that is one reason why I am not visible as much in the viral world lately. I depend on other people's computers now and for a while I will be here sporadically.

In the mean time I've been taking some art classes, which are very enjoyable. In my painting class, I was learning how to paint with a palette knife today. I would never guess that it can be so much fun and I am totally falling for this technique (I sound like I am talking about some nice looking man) and I would love to create many paintings with my knives.

Our task was to carefully look at the objects in front of us, and study their colors very carefully - a light and a shadow, a color hue etc. We had to "see" as many color shades of the background, the block and the pear as possible, mix those colors, and then apply them in "blocks" or "spots" on the canvas with our knife.  Next week we will continue with our project.

 I took a picture with my phone, so it is not the greatest image quality, but it is sufficient enough to show my friends a peek preview, how I am "tackling" my background and the pear sitting on the painted styrofoam block.

Until next time.

Jan 29, 2012

Easton Arts Council - Happenings


Art Show on view now:
January 10 through February 25 - 2012 Annual Members Show
(I have a couple of painting in this show)

Easton Events for young artists coming up:
  • Feb. 4 (1pm – 3:30pm) - Youth Art and Frame Workshop - Acrylic on Canvas (Ages 4 – 12)
  • March 11 (2pm) - 2012 YOUTH TALENT SHOW
  • March 11 (3pm-4pm) - 2012 YOUTH ART SHOW

Jan 5, 2012

Pastel Drawing - Stormy Clouds

I have one obsession - looking at the sky. I absolutely adore the clouds. The shapes. The colors. Sometimes heaviness. Other times luminosity. I must be extra careful while driving, because I tend to steal a look at the clouds and it could be.... you know what I mean.

Over the years I have seen many cloud paintings and drawings from other artists. Some exquisite, some pretty bad. I have been trying to get courage to paint or draw clouds for a long time. And in these past few days, it was my first attempt. I think I didn't do too bad, but neither great. I still need to perfect the feel, the colors..... But not too bad at the first try :-)

(I just have to pat my own back a little bit - it is my personal encouragement to do it again.)

Stormy Clouds
Pastel on Cotton, Acid Free, Archival Paper

Jan 2, 2012

Motivational Video For Artists

While browsing the internet I came across this video that I think is very encouraging for anyone who like to work, create or do something in their life and not just sit around :-)

Although this video by Derek Sivers is unlisted, it had many visitors! Oh man, this "viral" thing is quite powerful, isn't it?