Sunday, November 18, 2012

Evolving Promises

At the end of a fun week working at the Noyes Gallery in Lincoln, one of my favorite paintings found a new home with a wonderful new patron.  Blessings go with it!  Be sure to stop at the Noyes if you are in Lincoln.  They are open every day 10-5, and until 9 on First Fridays each month, at 119 S. 9th Street.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

ANAC Conference

We had so much much success...and so much rain in Aurora, Nebraska last week for the Association of Nebraska Art Clubs Conference!  My friend, and fellow member of The Art Society, Tina Simeon won Best of Show with her drawing of three young boys looking through the fence at their upcoming rides for the Mutton Busting contest (the sheep rodeo for kids, so popular  in county fairs around here).  Susan Hart, a friend from Cozad, won the Museum of Nebraska Art purchase award.  
View from classroom at The Leadership Center

The juried competition is a highlight of this event, and Paul Leveille had the difficult task of choosing 24 pieces of art for the show that will travel around the state throughout the year, as well as 24 honorable mentions from over 300 entries.  Paul drove all the way from his home in western Massachusetts to teach portraits in oil, watercolor, and pastel.  All those art supplies wouldn't fit in the limited luggage allowed on an airline!

Art is a Verb by Linda Jorgensen
I taught classes in altered books and collage, and am so pleased with the student results.  We worked on history, composition, criticism and techniques.  They got an overload of Patti Digh, and other people and things I love!  This painting shows the Patti influence. We were able to frame several collages by Saturday.  What a thrill to take something home, ready to hang! 

Now it's time to clean my studio so all those traveling supplies can fit back in!  This was an amazing growth experience for me.  It was overwhelmingly intimidating to be teaching my peers.  The situation required overtime planning and preparation, which led to success.  Can't wait to figure out what comes next!  

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Work of Giants

I just finished an exciting painting that will be entered in the NebraskaLand Days art show in North Platte this week.  The theme of this collage is (subtly) railroad.  You may not guess it if I didn't point it out.  But, it has a nearly hidden image of the Union Pacific crest, tiny words "Pacific Railroad Act", and the date 1862 stamped on it.  Once you hear railroad, the vanishing lines with cross bars become obviously, tracks.  This one has abundant colors and textures.

Also this week will be the Association of Nebraska Art Clubs Conference at the FFA leadership center in Aurora.  I will be teaching altered books and collage at this event!  Much planning, practicing, and preparing has been required, and I think I'm ready!  I hope it will be a blessing and inspiration for every student.  If you are interested in attending, you can still register.  Check out the ANAC website, or call  Jean Cook at 308-382-5591.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Association of Nebraska Art Clubs

Overwhelmed. Humbled. Scared. Excited. Honored.  I am feeling all of these emotions today after receiving my ANAC Newsletter in the mail.  I am one of eight presenters at the 48th Annual Conference of the Association of Nebraska Art Clubs in June!  The contract was signed a couple of months ago, but seeing it in print is making me face reality. Yikes! Many thanks to the ANAC board and the Grand Island host chapters for having faith in me.  I will do all I can to make these classes in altered books and collage a worthwhile experience for mixed media artists.  But, wow.  What a responsibility!  I have been in classes with many of the ANAC artists, and it will be a real challenge to have something new to offer the amazing painters in this state.  Pray for me please!

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Nebraska Club

Safari Sunflower II at the maitre'd podium
Throughout March and April, I have 11 pieces of art in  The Nebraska Club, a private club restaurant and banquet space at the top of the US Bank building in Lincoln.  The day I put the show up was rainy, making for grey photos, but it's an amazing view. 
View of Memorial Stadium from The Nebraska Club

What an exciting opportunity provided through the Noyes Gallery!  After a focus gallery show in February at the Noyes, I am now a member of this wonderful co-op gallery in Lincoln, which maintains agreements with several venues to hang art in public spaces. The co-op is a huge commitment, and a great chance to spend time with and be inspired by other artists. Traveling all the way across the state to work in the gallery a couple days each month gives me a chance to see my two college kids more often.  Be sure to stop in whenever you are in Lincoln.  On the first Friday of each month, many of the artists are present with new art for a great open house party held from 6-10 pm-ish or later. 

Saturday, January 28, 2012


This painting will be included with the show in the Focus Room at the Noyes Gallery in Lincoln through the month of February.  In preparing work to take east, I was stymied by titling this piece.  Last night I was down to "Doorway", but not satisfied.  Today, listening to American Public Media's Being, I heard an interview with John O'Donohue, an Irish poet, philosopher, and Catholic priest.  One of his books, To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings, is reviewed at Amazon by Kerry Walters, who quotes the introduction:
In our overly busy culture, he writes, we frequently race over the "crucial thresholds in our life" without pausing to take note of their significance. We no longer have "rituals to protect, encourage, and guide us as we cross over into the unknown" (p. xiv). A blessing is precisely one of those protecting, encouraging, and guiding rituals. It memorializes our transitions, connects us with a wider community (since none of us really ever travels alone), and strives to "present a minimal psychic portrait of the geography of change it names" (ibid).
I am struck by this spiritual use of the term "threshold" much more descriptive and less cliche than "doorway to the future".  This painting is one of my simplest collages.  The background is created using Citrisolv to alter the printed images on clay based magazine papers and create the ethereal pathways and bubble formations.  Black marker highlights some of the shapes.  The large rectangle and cross-hatched lines are from my favorite tissue, painted with black gesso and dry brushed with copper acrylic.  The texture of this tissue suggests tree roots, or blood vessels.  Serendipitous results of the experimental techniques used here could be symbolic of "crossing over into the unknown" a changing geography. 

It brings to mind a friend who is in treatment for cancer.  A month ago, she was afraid of the unknown, but now, 4 weeks into treatment, is realizing a wider community of others who are experiencing the same things, and others who are there to help her.  We should have created a blessing ceremony or party to recognize the threshold she had to cross as she started into this chapter of her life.  It's never too late to start a ritual.