I sometimes wish that I had a time machine and could whisper to my younger self that dreams do come true and hard work pays off.
Twelve years ago, I got married in April in the elegant, historic Glenview Mansion in Rockville, Maryland amongst cherry blossoms and art. I remember thinking, wow, that would be so cool if I exhibited my art here someday.
Well, someday turns out to be this, Sunday, April 2, 2017.
In 2005, I lived in DC, worked in corporate finance, and religiously attended my weekly painting classes at The Art League School at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA. I painted once a week for 2 hours. Nothing more. It was my hobby and release. I could not envision a life beyond that.
Fast forward twelve great years and I have a show opening at the Glenview Mansion Art Gallery. Sixteen of my delectable works will be showcased and on sale along with three other artists: Sara Liebman (mixed media), Barbara Bell (watercolor), and Coriolana Simon (still life photography).
Come experience the charm of where I got married! I would love for you to join me on Sunday, April 1st from 1:30 to 3:30 and toast my wish coming true. Share in the magic of this amazing gallery and historic venue. The spectacular budding cherry blossoms also add a little extra wonder.
Almost every art lover can name one: the exhibition that brought him or her to their knees and tears to their eyes.
They will remember the location, works of art, and circumstances that surrounded their visit. It will have crept into their soul and they would have left slightly transformed. Regardless of the medium, the message, or the venue, the exhibition will stay with them forever.
In summer of 2002, after 2 years of practicing soul-sucking transfer pricing, I was luckily laid off from the obliterated Arthur Anderson. From there I embarked on a European journey with a friend and a rental car. After time in Italy, France, England, and Switzerland, we found ourselves on the northern coast of Spain. Where does an avid art lover go when they are in northern Spain? The Guggenheim Bilbao.
We had no knowledge of what exhibition was on display when we arrived. We had no cell phones and only occasionally came across an internet cafe (remember those?), so everything was blind luck. Honestly, I just wanted to see and witness the incredible architectural marvel that is the building of the Guggenheim Bilbao, everything else was bonus. Boy did I get a bonus! The current exhibition upon our arrival was “Paris: Capital of the Arts 1900-1968.”
The exhibition “traced the major developments in painting and sculpture that took place in Paris throughout the first seven decades of the twentieth century, and reflected the narrative of historical and political events that changed the character of the city during this period.” according to the official literature. The Fauves, the post-impressionists are amongst my favorites and they were all there, in this spectacular building, showing how the history of one of my favorite cities shaped these incredible and historically significant artists and their art.
As the icing on the cake, the painting “Henri Matisse” a portrait by André Derain, the famous Fauve was included in the exhibition. I had spent weeks copying this exact painting, as a culmination of my studies of the Fauvist* movement for my high school AP art class. Upon seeing this painting in person, after examining every last detail in print for weeks on end , tears poured down my face and the years between the two instances faded away. It was one of the most moving artistic experiences I have ever had.
To remind me of that inspiring, earth-moving visit, even 15 years later, I still have the exhibition poster, framed, hanging in my house. I hope one day my children ask me about it.
Have you been moved to tears over an exhibition? Or perhaps a performance? I would love to hear about it.
*Fauvism is the style of les Fauves (French for “the wild beasts”), a loose group of early twentieth-century modern artists whose works emphasized painterly qualities and strong color over the representational or realistic values retained by Impressionism, as defined by Wikipedia.
Paris is such a powerful art city. Most interestingly, in Paris you can, chronologically, journey through art history starting at the Louvre (from the beginning of time to 1848), then skip to the Musee d’Orsay for a healthy dose of Impressionism (from 1848-1905), and then finally to the Musee National d’art moderne to bring you up to present day (1905-present).
I did spend most of my time focusing on the Impressionists and Post-impressionists. As promised from last weeks’s post, I realized 5 truths of the Impressionist (and Post-Impressionists) from my hours and hours of pouring over these scrumptious paintings.
The Impressionist were COLOR MASTERS! Their paintings may not have been the most technically accurate or most compositionally pleasing, but did they know their color! The color mixing abilities were amazing and color relationships were spot on. The hue itself made each and every painting a masterpiece.
Each painting had such MOVEMENT and EMOTION. You can see each stroke the artist created and it makes you feel the emotion of the painter himself/herself. The painter is present.
The Artists had SOMETHING TO SAY beyond, “this is pretty.” They were passionate about something that was greater then themselves in society; whether it was industrialization, the working class, or their own ability to paint as they please.
This was NO HOBBY for the Impressionists, it was a way of life. They were each deeply passionate about their craft and did not stop working. If they were not painting, they were writing, sculpting, or collaging – any form of art they could get their hands on.
They did NOT WORK ALONE – they championed each other and constantly got together to discuss ideas and techniques. They had a great support network.
What is my take away?
Perfect color theory, work harder, paint strokes are not something to hide, and stick with your peeps!
Merriam-Webster’s definition of the word “WONDER” is “rapt attention or astonishment at something awesomely mysterious or new to one’s experience.” Well, I can think of no better title and/or description to the newly renovated Renwick Gallery’s latest exhibit.
It is fabulous, powerful, and awe inspiring…my words will not do it justice. It is something you really need to go experience yourself. The best I could do is a brief slideshow of my recent trip with one of my favorite small companions.
I will be the first to admit, I don’t make it to downtown DC enough to view, marvel, and study the great works of art displayed in our Capitol…..FOR FREE! One of my New Year’s Resolution was to take greater advantage or the city’s art scene and, yes, it is the end of September and I have been to a museum 2 times in 2015. Not a great record. Aside from juggling kids schedules, I need friends to smack me in the head and mention and exhibition to me MULTIPLE times before I take notice and make a plan leave the suburbs and travel to the Museums.
For the past couple months I have heard buzz around the National Gallery of Art’s exhibition Gustave Caillebotte: The Painter’s Eye. This past Saturday I finally committed, with 2 weeks remaining until the exhibition closes, and experienced this amazing exhibit! For those of you who have not seen it (and are reasonably close to DC), you have two weeks…it is worth moving around your plans to go see it before it is gone on October 4th.
Walking into to the exhibit I knew very little about Caillebotte. He, like his Impressionist friends, was rejected by the Salon (the official exhibition of the Academy of Fine Arts in Paris) in 1875 and found a home painting and exhibiting his works with the likes of Edgar Degas and Auguste Renoir. Caillebotte’s paintings featured images of people and places he encountered in and around Paris, which during his time was undergoing a radical modernization. So, why is he the least known Impressionist painter? “Because of his secure finances — derived from his father’s successful textile business — he had no need to earn an income from his art. He therefore did not sell his pictures, and few entered public collections,” states to the NGA. His wealth also helped him become a huge collector of Impressionist artwork, which upon his death he bequeathed to the French state and its museums.
So, why go to the show when one can just google him? His work is breathtaking in person! I visited this exhibition with a friend and fellow artist and we had a great time admiring and diesecting his work. Caillbotte’s juxtaposition of warm and cool colors, the texture of his whites, and his interesting perspectives matched with some large canvas sizes made for a great learning and viewing experience for both of us.
Bottom line, you have until October 4th to go see it; however, don’t go this week (September 22 – 24)…the Pope is in town and Washingtonians have been warned to treat a trip into DC as if it is a blizzard.
As I mentioned in a previous post, Women Chefs: Artists in the Kitchen opens September 5th through November 8th at the Strathmore Mansion in Rockville, MD. I am thrilled to have been chosen as one of the artists to create a “portrait” of Susan Wallace, Executive Pastry Chef of the Blacks Restaurant Groups in DC. I am finally finished and I wanted to share my painting, “Childhood Dreams Realized,” along with my artist statement about the piece.
In the meantime, mark your calendars for the opening reception on Thursday, September 10th at 6pm! This is going to be an amazing event. My painting will be on display, along with 20 works of art portraying other notable Women Chefs in the DC area.
I am honored to have been paired with the talented and inspiring Susan Wallace, Executive Pastry Chef of Black Restaurant Group. My artwork’s ongoing theme of tempting sweets coincides perfectly with Susan’s gift for creating and executing delectable and elegant desserts.
Getting to know Susan has been an amazing experience which has reminded me that childhood dreams, great role models, and hard work lead to amazing places. Susan’s childhood dream of becoming a chef was largely influenced by her mother, a food writer for the Ladies’ Home Journal magazine. With her favorite toy, an Easy Bake Oven, and Betty Crocker’s Cookbook for Boys and Girls in hand, she began her journey to achieve her goal. As Susan joined the ranks amongst the top pastry chefs she is regularly drew upon her mother’s classic recipes and cookbooks and then added her own modern twist.
The painting I have created inspired by Susan acknowledges her influences, delectable culinary creations, and the hard work and long hours it has taken her to become the Chef she is today. It only seems fitting to paint Susan amongst the backdrop where she spends her long days and nights: the kitchen at Black Salt Restaurant. Her nature is unassuming and Susan’s desserts are the focal point. Her mother’s cookbooks and her toy Easy Bake Oven are tucked in the shelves, as a reminder of her roots. Susan’s drive, determination, passion, and pride for the amazingly delectable result is truly inspiring.
Last week, after a small construction delay, “The Artists’ Palette” exhibition opened at the Bodzin Gallery at the JCCNV in Fairfax, VA. I currently have 13 paintings on display, along with my “Jewish Sweets” notecards. I thought it would be fun to share a glimpse of the show that will be up until April 6th:
“Five Doughnuts Stacked” is referring to my painting, “Doughnuts Galore” in the Find-the-Food Scavenger Hunt! I recently attended the opening reception of “Feast Your Eyes: the art of food” at Annmarie Garden in Dowell, MD, in which two of my paintings were exhibited.
It was one of the most creative and playful exhibits I have attended. They had several interactive stations, such as Find-the-Food: Food Art Scavenger Hunt and Create-A-Plate Display, in which one uses felt to visualize what her/she likes to eat. The creativity was fabulous. Instead of the traditional, first, second, third place prizes, they were re-titled the “Creme-de-la-Creme Award” and the “Amuse-bouche Award.” The the jazz trio and the great h-orderves did not hurt either.
Now I have to start thinking of creative ideas for my next solo exhibition in 2015! If you have any clever ideas, please send them my way 🙂