Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Nature's Visual Poetry

Wilde Meyer’s current show at its Tucson Gallery is entitled “Nature’s Visual Poetry.” This group show features six of the gallery’s artists, each of whom has a unique interpretation of nature’s forms and landscapes.

Four of the artists paint en plein air using settings in Wyoming, New Mexico and Arizona for their inspiration. The mood they felt while capturing the scene affects each painting. For example, Michael Baum expresses the solitude of the Western landscape at early dusk in “Desert Evening.” Everything is soft in the golden twilight, but the place seems far, far away.
Michael Baum  "Desert Evening" oil on panel 22" x 25.5"


Wildflowers ascend toward distant, mysterious mountains in “Outside of Taos,” Robert Anderson’s dreamlike landscape. Using thick paint and neutral tones, he creates a mood that’s calming, yet thought-provoking. An excellent craftsman, Robert made the frame for "Outside of Taos" himself and divided the scene in three parts as a triptych, which I think makes it very interesting.
Robert Anderson "Outside of Taos, NM" oil on panel  13" x 19.75"


In Judith d’Agostino’s “Lakeside” painting, the weather is changing, and so is the mood.  The sun-kissed orange mountains and fluffy white clouds will soon be overtaken by an ominous black cloud, already casting a dark shadow on the trees. It’s a powerful scene.
Judith D'Agotstino "Lakeside" oil on panel 29.5"x53.5"


Alix Stefan paintings are journeys into the Sonoran desert. She pictures it as a paradise, abundant with ocotillo, saguaro or organ pipe cactus that rise above colorful fields of flowers, prickly pear and other native plants. In “I Love the Rain,” the subdued color palette and beautiful rendering of the sky make me feel as if I can smell the wet desert scents.
Alix Stefan "I love the Rain" acrylic on canvas  26"x32"


The other two artists choose animal subjects to express their love of nature.

Sarah Webber’s painterly portraits of animals conveys their particular personalities  – as they appear to her. According to Sarah, whether it’s “the color of a nose, the spark in the eyes, the thickness of fur or the curve of an ear, there has to be one thing I wish to say with my paint that will reach out and touch the viewer.” You can certainly see her intentions in the painting of the rabbit below, entitled “Secret Bunny.”
Sarah Webber "Secret Bunny"  19"x17" oil on canvas


As an artist and lifelong horse trainer, Chaille Trevor’s equine paintings are unique in the intimacy and sensitivity. She depicts various aspects of horses’ personalities, from the gentleness of how they groom each other to the sheer power, spirit and grace of a horse in movement. The two horses in this painting seem to be communicating, their heads titled slightly inward and their bodies trotting in unison.
Chaille Trevor  "Kissed by the Sun"  oil on canvas  36" x 48"
If you happened to miss any of the shows, send us an email and we can get you more images of available works by featured artists.

I hope everyone is ready to spoil mom on Mother's Day on May 8th. If not, we'll throw out a few ideas so check back with us soon!

Monday, April 4, 2011

"Live in Color"


The latest show at Wilde Meyer, "Live in Color" opened on Thursday, March 31st and features new work by Sherri Belassen and Ryan Hale.

Left: Sherri Belassen  "At What Cost"  oil on canvas 60" x 36"
Right: Ryan Hale "Go West" acrylic on canvas  60" x 72"


Ryan creates his abstract paintings with drywall and palette knives, using mainly red and ochre tones. He pairs these colors against each other to see how they’ll interact. His work looks spontaneous, but, actually, he says he’s very methodical, applying his paint thoughtfully and changing directions as the piece comes together.

Ryan told me that he’s influenced by aerial photography! Plots of developed areas coinciding with undeveloped land, roads and buildings all inspire his geometric compositions. His painting entitled “Through the City” implies the congestion and energy of city life. My eyes rest on the white form in the center, but all around shapes are colliding.
Ryan Hale "Through the City" acrylic on canvas 60" x 48"

In “Building Up,” he contrasts organized linear “roads” with the chaos of free-floating patches of color.
Ryan Hale  "Building Up" acrylic on canvas  48" x 36"

Sherri paints with gusto and a free, yet strong style. Her work is all about the paint – the subject is there to help her explore and show many levels of colors and textures. For example, in “Splash” she uses large blocks of color to create interesting geometric shapes around the figure of a diver, whose body is defined by layers of paint scraped away to reveal another multitude of colors underneath.
Sherri Belassen  "Splash"  oil on canvas  48" x 30"

 It’s a very effective technique, used in most of her paintings.  Many of the titles of Sherri’s work convey irony and humor, as in “At What Cost."
Sherri Belassen  "At What Cost?" oil on canvas  60" x 36"
 

This is a strong show, with two painters who have contributed very interesting paintings.
Left: Ryan Hale  "Past Futures"  acrylic on canvas  36" x 72"
Right: Sherri Belassen "Olas Surfers" oil on canvas 36" x 48"

Left:  Ryan Hale  "Thoughts Abound"  Warming Day: I, II, III
(Right) Ryan Hale, 6 pieces: Warming Day: I, II, III  & Late Afternoon I, II, III

Sherri Belassen  "Play"  oil on canvas 48" x 72"


"Live in Color" continues through April 16, 2011.

Our next show will be at our gallery in Tucson: a group show featuring art by Alix Stefan, Robert Anderson, Sarah Webber, Michael Baum, Chaille Trevor and Judith D'Agostino called "Nature's Visual Poetry," opening on April 14, 2011, 5-7pm.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Judy Feldman at an Evening with the Friends

Last Saturday, March 26, 2011, I had the privilege of attending An Evening with Friends, the annual fundraiser hosted by the Phoenix Friends of the Arizona Cancer Center.  The Friends are good "friends" of Wilde Meyer, and they often request a painting donation from one of the gallery's artists.

This year, they requested one of mine, "At the Villa Mandarine." All the printed materials were beautifully designed to coordinate with my painting and its colors. There were more than 400 people at the party, held at the Phoenician Resort. The Friends have raised more than $5 million for cancer research at the Tuscon-based center. This was another successful evening for them.

My painting was purchased by Margaret Taylor, a lovely woman who lives both here in Arizona  and in California. I was so happy to meet her, and we had our photo taken with the painting.
Judy Feldman and Margaret Taylor