Showing posts with label Trevor Mikula. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Trevor Mikula. Show all posts

Monday, December 14, 2015

Art treasures for the holidays

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

With the holiday season comes the quest for gifts for friends and family. For many people, it’s an overwhelming task, since stores are filled with merchandise, and finding the right present can be difficult. So, how about a gift of art? A hand-crafted glass or ceramic piece, a small painting or sculpture would be a unique way of showing your holiday wishes, and the recipient will enjoy it for a long time.

At this time of year, Wilde Meyer Gallery asks its artists to produce small works that would be appropriate for gifts. It’s a great way to give (or acquire for yourself!) a piece from a favorite artist that you may not have been able to afford in a larger size. It also gives you a chance to get to know most of the artists there, since many small pieces are be displayed at once. This year, the show is called “Treasures,” and it will run in Scottsdale until Christmas, then will open at the Tucson location.

Holiday Nap 12" x 12"
Judy Feldman
Bruno Waiting 14" x 11"
Judy Feldman
I find it fun to do small paintings, since I can work fairly quickly. The two here, “Bruno Waiting” and “Holiday Nap” have an intimate quality that I like. Even though I love details, I tried to keep the images fairly simple.

Sounds Reasonable 10" x 10"
Linda Carter Holman
Crazy Eyes 14" x 11"
Connie Townsend
When I went to the gallery yesterday to look at the wall of small paintings, a few caught my eye. Connie Townsend has a portrait of one of her chickens in her distinctive style called “Crazy Eyes.” Linda Carter Holman has included some of her favorite things in her painting entitled “Sounds Reasonable,” such as the Calla lilies, the goldfish, fruit bowl and a dog with an expression that reminds me of one of her gracious ladies in larger paintings.

Let's Go 12" x 12"
Timothy Chapman

Timothy Capman’s “Let’s Go” painting reflects his whimsical ideas; this time, a blue bird with a saddle is taking flight off a plateau. Great idea for a traveler friend! Trevor Mikula has painted one of his distinctive dogs with a touch of humor, entitled “She’s a Lady.” And, if you like Bill Colt’s cows, you’ll see a few on the wall.

She's a Lady  12" x 12"
Trevor Mikula
So stop by and see the amazing wall of Treasures. There’s really something for everyone’s tastes. The gift of art is a unique and memorable one!

Treasures is on view until January 2, 2016. You can see more work by Judy Feldman, Connie Townsend, Linda Carter Holman, and Trevor Mikula at Wilde Meyer Gallery. 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Divine Bovines are Udderly Wonderful at Wilde Meyer!

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Growing Pains  24″ x 48″
Sarah Webber
Wilde Meyer artists tend to like animals. It’s not at all unusual to see images of dogs, horses and even chimpanzees when you walk into any of their galleries. But, this month, some other animals will be prominently displayed in Scottsdale at the first “Divine Bovine” show.

Here, you’ll see all sorts of bovine art: cows, buffalo, bison and yaks. At least 25 artists are participating in this themed show. Some of the artists, like Bill Colt and Sarah Webber, have favored painting bovines for quite a while.

Onlookers  18″ x 24″
Bill Colt
Lily Fair  24″ x 20″
Bill Colt

How Now Brown Cow  30″ x 30″
Judy Feldman
For some, like me, it’s a first time we’ve painted a bovine. I don’t know why I never thought of it before, because I do think cows are beautiful, especially their expressive, heavily lashed eyes. I thoroughly enjoyed painting “How Now Brown Cow,” and I really did feel a bond with this lovely creature!

Small in a Fuzi Dream 18″ x 18″
Linda Carter Holman
Linda Carter Holman has a personal relationship with the subject of her painting, entitled “Small in a Fuzi Dream.” The yak belongs to her! Linda has incorporated images that recur in her other paintings, such as the goldfish and the charming female figure, along with her typical color palette.

As a matter of fact, you can probably identify the artists of many paintings. Although the subject may be new, our styles still come through! Sherri Belassen’s “Retro Vache” definitely reflects her technique and choice of hues. Connie Townsend’s “Red” has the same crazy expression you see in many of her driving dogs. And, of course, Trevor Mikula has come up with a witty way of showing his cows in “Heads or Tails!”

Retro Vache 60″ x 72″
Sherri Belassen

Red 24″ x 30″
Connie Townsend
Heads or Tails 24″ x 24″
Trevor Mikula

Yak Yak Yak  30″ x 17″ x 16″
Barbara Duzan
Buffalo Past
Adriana Walker
The show is not only about paintings. Adriana Walker has Necklace and earring sets (show Buffalo Past). Kathryn Blackmun has created a turquoise bison ornament and a bison plate, and there are sculptures by Carol Ruff Franza (Prairie Thunder”), Kari Rives (“Sky Cow”) and “Yak Yak Yak” by Barbara Duzan.


So, stop by during October and see this fun show. You never know, you might fall in love with a cow, a buffalo or even a yak!

You can see more art from Divine Bovine at Wilde Meyer.

Monday, February 9, 2015

The Power of Simplification

by Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Last month, I had the pleasure of visiting the Museum of Modern Art in New York to see an exhibit of Matisse’s cut-outs, a collection of the work he created in the final decade of his life. When he was forced to give up painting in his later years, Matisse began to work with painted paper and scissors, arranging the shapes into lively compositions, creating what he called gouache cut-outs.

Henri Matisse, "The Snail," 1953  source
Matisse called his new method drawing in color.  He stated, “For me it is a question of simplification. Instead of drawing the outline and establishing color within it, I draw directly in the color…this simplification guarantees precision as I reconcile two means now become one.”

Matisse’s cut-outs actually introduced a new medium in art: his compositions of colored paper were not like other artists’ collages of various materials. They were an intentional method of creating art. He also used his cut-outs as a way to create a composition, moving them around until he achieved what he wanted. Matisse was always thinking about relationships, harmonies and contrasts. Jodi Hauptman, senior curator for MOMA, called his cut-outs “a carefully orchestrated riot of colors.”

For me, the outstanding impression of this amazing exhibit was how Matisse simplified his shapes and used them to celebrate his love of form and color. For this blog, I started thinking about some artists at Wilde Meyer who use simplified shapes and strong hues in their visual language.

Shadowland, 48 x 48 inches
Jaime Ellsworth
Blaze, 48 x 48 inches
Jaime Ellsworth
Jaime Ellsworth uses a limited palette and images distilled down to their basic shapes to create contemporary depictions of animals she loves. I really like the power of “Shadowland,” where the partial image of the horses and their shadows connect in interesting geometric patterns. Here, simplicity is conveyed in such an elegant way. Jaime continues this theme in “Blaze,” again using partial shapes and limited colors. In this painting, both the positive and the negative space are of interest.

Dog Days II, 24 x 48 inches
Jaime Ellsworth
Things get more colorful in “Dog Days II.” But shapes are still very simple, and Jaime has painted the scene at the dogs’ eye level, which makes it so much more fun and appealing.

Trevor Mikula uses a palette knife to create his amusing paintings. He keeps things simple, too, with large blocks of color and a focus on one particular image. In “Like Your Hair,” he’s distilled the plant down to its basics: some curvy leaves and a red pot. That’s probably because Trevor sees things in his own humorous way! He also likes to transform mundane objects into a work of art – such as the old phone in “Ringer.” Here, the powerful hues and beautiful shapes of the background provide the art platform for the old black telephone.

Like Your Hair, 24 x 24 inches
Trevor Mikula
Ringer, 24 x 24 inches
Trevor Mikula
In Robert Burt’s paintings, strong color compositions portray the landscapes and architecture around him. Like Matisse, Robert distills his scenes down to their most elemental and powerful components, giving his paintings a very contemporary, stylized look. In “Colorful Morning,” he uses basic shapes to convey the mountains, trees, a house and a winding road with 3 cars – a seemingly simple endeavor that took considerable skill – especially his choice of colors that burst with energy to convey bright sunrise.

Colorful Morning, 30 x 30 inches
Robert Burt
We see this technique again in “Autumn.” Here, the fire red of the tree and its oversize shape get our immediate attention, but the muted trees in the background and the negative shapes of the sky, and the foreground with its shadow are still worth inspection.
Autumn, 44" x 44" inches
Robert Burt
Maybe this is kind of obvious, but I think that in this world of over-stimulation, it’s nice to look at art that celebrates simplicity! It’s such a powerful form of expression.

PS. Here’s a quote by the musician Frederic Chopin that recently appeared in a blog I read: "Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art."

View more art by Jaime Ellsworth, Robert Burt and Trevor Mikula at Wilde Meyer Gallery.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Day of the Dead

By Laura Orozco Allen | www.wildemeyer.com

It is not a scary holiday. I can say it because I grew up celebrating it. Although I'm from the most northern part of Mexico, my hometown city's customs are a little Americanized and because of it, the typical Mexican traditions from Central and South Mexico are more diluted. But still, it was an important celebration.

As a child it meant my favorite time of the year was here! The air is (or was) full of the toasty smell of burning leaves. The air is cold and is windier there. The leaves walk with you as you go along with the wind... and we walked; my friend Norma and I walked everywhere.


The "Panaderias” (bakeries) would start selling the white sugar skulls, brightly decorated and with names on the forehead. It is fun to find yours and hopefully it is decorated in the colors you like.

Also “El Pan de Muerto” (Day of the Dead bread) would make their once a year appearance for a few weeks. The bread, sweet but a little bland, and is wonderful with a cup of hot chocolate or coffee. It is enjoyed in the evenings after a light supper.

Another sign that the "El Dia De Los Muertos" is near, is the flowers you'll see. "Mota De Obispo" is such a strange but beautiful flower. Deep red purple color and velvety to the touch. It looks like the ruffles and folds of a very elegant Spanish dancer dress.

The "Cempasuchitl" or Marigolds is another popular flower for this day. More than their bright orange color, what comes to my mind is their smell. They can fill the air with their aroma in churches and even the cemeteries. You can smell them from far away! In the spring I see them at the nurseries here, and to me, they will always be "Day of the Dead" flowers. Not a bad thing.

The cemeteries are full with visitors (live ones) the weekend before, the week of, and the weekend after. And it's really a celebration. People make it a point to come. Headstones get swept, polished, and even repainted. They are then decorated with flowers and veladoras (candles.) A mariachi band would play in the background or someone might bring a guitar and sing our gone relatives' favorite songs. Since it is an all day event people bring chairs, blankets, food, and drinks! Food vendors pass by saying "Elootess!" (corn on the cob) or it could be "Paleetass!” (ice pops) or something else. The rosary is read and yes, it can be a very sad day especially if it is a recent passing. But with the passing of the years it really becomes a day when you only think of the happy memories. The afternoon would be full of remember when’s…

In college, at La Univerisdad Autonoma De Cd. Juarez, we would have competitions of "Altares." Each group was assigned a different State to represent. This is really how I learned about some of the different traditions and customs each Mexican State has. One of my professors even had a real skull that she would bring for this special evening! While this was an academic assignment, it was a favorite, and looking back it gave me a deeper respect and admiration for this wonderful day!


This year at Wilde Meyer Gallery we are celebrating our first Day of the Dead. I'm very glad to say that none of us has "gone" yet. So we are celebrating our wonderful and beloved pets that are gone now. So come celebrate with us! We will have an Altar and "Ofrendas" with treats for our dogs and cats. And Pan De Muertos and coffee for us humans.

Come and see now! The Altar is on the works now. The reception and refreshments will happen next Art Walk October 30th, from 7 to 9 pm.

Los esperamos! (or, we are looking forward!)

Clockwise from top left: Charles Davison "Journey 2"; Trevor Mikula "Day of the Dead II"
Andrea Peterson "Mourning Dove"; Melinda Curtin "Dia De los Muertos" 


Friday, March 29, 2013

The Art of a Smile

By Judy Feldman | www.wildemeyer.com

Since visual art is a means of personal expression, it’s not surprising that some paintings or sculptures convey a sense of humor. Those of us who see the world in a lighthearted way tend to have that vision when creating art. And, today, we have much more freedom to “tell” a story the way we want to, than say, Rembrandt or Vermeer who were pretty constrained by the artistic styles that were in vogue at that time. (Do you think Rembrandt had a sense of humor??)

The Wilde Meyer artists who embrace humor in art seem to have one thing in common: they frequently portray animals. Let’s see why…

BFFs 24"x30" oil on canvas
by Connie Townsend
Connie Townsend translates the humor she sees in life to her paintings. Even though most of her work focuses on dogs, the joy and hilarity she conveys could certainly apply to humans. But it’s so much funnier with dogs! For example, in her painting entitled “BFFs,” the two dogs riding a motorcycle – one in the side car – are having a blast together, tongues hanging out, ears flying and totally focused on their exhilarating ride. You can’t help but smile at a scene like that.

Labra Duo 24"x30" oil on canvas
by Connie Townsend
New Yorkie 24"x16"
by Connie Townsend
Her titles capture her sense of humor as well. In “Labra Duo,” two Labradors are hanging out the windows of an old Cadillac. Look closely, and you’ll see their white and black tails crossing each other. “New Yorkie” is another one of Connie’s funny takes on dogs-who-could-be-humans. The Yorkie is all dolled up with a bow in her hair – she could be a New York City dog, or maybe a New Yorker…

Despite her humorous approach, Connie has a very painterly technique, and her vigorous brush strokes and bright colors give the works the energy needed for her lighthearted style.
Strong color is another way of expressing upbeat emotions. Sue Goldsand produces fused glass sculptures of animals in a whimsical style. The bright hues and funny expressions on her characters’ faces definitely evoke a smile, if not a laugh.
Tweets, fused glass scultpure
by Sue Goldsand

“Blue Standing Dog” is another example of Sue’s humor, with its cool glasses, wagging tongue and bright red heart (in a strange place).
Blue Standing Dog, fused glass sculpture
by Sue Goldsand

Bailey, cast bronze scultpure
by Jim Budish 
Jim Budish’s bronze sculptures don’t have color for expression, but his stylized animals with their elongated legs bring a sense of humor to his work. Jim says "I try to create a smile through my sculpture by reaching into my subject, attempting to capture the ‘Joie De Vivre’ that I believe is somewhere inside all of us.”

Jim captures the essence of his subject’s spirit, emotion, attitude and personality. His rabbits’ long necks and large ears represent a species that we know, but are just a little funnier than they are in life. He references relatives and friends when he names his sculptures. “Abbey” is named for his granddaughter, and “Bailey” represents a friend’s dog.
Abby, cast bronze scultpure
by Jim Budish 
Like Your Hair 24"x24" acrylic on canvas
by Trevor Mikula
Hula Hoop Takes the Stage 12"x12"
by Trevor Mikula
Humor is the essence of Trevor Mikula’s paintings. Sometimes, it’s just the title: “Like Your Hair,” referring to a leafy plant, or the “Argyle Chicken” strutting on a diamond-patterned floor. Trevor says he gets his ideas from friends, who suggest a quirky take on something they see. Using his own imagination, vibrant colors and textured paint application with a palette knife, Trevor creates whimsical characters that are joyful and funny. “Hula Hoop Takes the Stage” is a great example of Trevor-style humor.

Argyle Chicken 24"x24" acrylic on canvas
by Trevor Mikula
We enjoy looking at art for many reasons, some more intellectual than others. But getting a smile or even a good laugh is certainly one we can all appreciate!

See more at www.wildemeyer.com.

Friday, August 3, 2012

It’s A Dog’s World,-At Least for This Month


Dog Days the 20th, August 2012
Coyote Underbrush by Sarah Webber
 We all know that dogs are man’s best friend, right? I think that you could also say that dogs are one of Wilde Meyer artist’s favorite subjects – especially right now, when the 20th annual “Dog Days of Summer” show is up at the Marshall Way gallery. As noted in the show invitation, the "dog days of summer" refers to the period of time between early July and early September when the Dog Star, Sirius, is visible in the night sky. Presumably because Sirius appeared during the very warm days in August, "dog days" came to signify the hot humid days of summer.
Party Dogs in the Pueblo by Melinda Curtin 

There are several great things about this show. First, it features small and affordable paintings. So, it’s a great way to collect a piece by a favorite artist without spending too much. Second, it showcases many different kinds of dogs in so many painterly ways.


Some artists choose to paint the dog in a more realistic manner, such as Sarah Webber who has done an impressionistic portrait of a coyote. Others, such as Melinda Curtin, favor a more non-traditional route. Her dancing dog is reverse-painted on glass in a contemporary, funky way.


Sounds Resonable by Linda Carter Holman


Top: Pancake and Polly, Puggie
Bottom: Whittle Brown Baby, Pug
by Trevor Mikula
If you follow the artists at Wilde Meyer, I’m sure you’ll recognize their style in these small dog paintings. Linda Carter Holman’s painting has so many of her favorite “accessories:” calla lilies, a pearl necklace on the dog, a bowl of fruit, lovebirds and a goldfish bowl. Trevor Mikula shows his wacky characters- some adorable hounds you’ll probably never see in real life! As usual, Connie Townsend’s dogs are going for a joy ride – this time on a motorcycle.

You’ll also recognize Sushi Felix’s distinctive style in the stylized canines she’s portrayed. You might even recognize my two pieces (hint: Plein Air Pooch and The Secret of the Missing Cupcake). The latter was inspired by a photo of a friend’s dog who was stealing a sweet potato. I thought a cupcake would be more appealing!


Biking the Bloomin' Desert by Connie Townsend

Coyote Pups and Little Coyote by Sushe Felix

Plein Air Pooch by Judy Feldman

The Secret of the Missing Cupcake by Judy Feldman

The last, and maybe best, great thing about the Dog Days of Summer show is that so many artists choose to participate (more than 30 this year). It’s so much fun to paint dogs in different ways, and we all enjoy the spontaneous pleasure of working on a small canvas. So, brave the heat of August, and cool off at the gallery while selecting your favorite hound. If you’re in Tucson, the show will be up there in September.

"Dog Days the 20th" view from outside