Monthly mailing

I thought I’d try this way of reposting my Monthly Newsletter.  Nope, my html isn’t good enough to get rid of the squares…..

 

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There are many ways in which government can get involved in art, aside from their involvement in the creation of public art.  I had two such significant encounters in the last month, one negative and three positive.

The first positive encounter was somewhat by proxy.  Ontario Airport has a few display cases in the concourse where the art of regional artists is displayed.  I was very happy to be informed recently that my application to show work there was approved and on Feb 19th five of my paintings were installed via the intermediary of Chaffey Community Museum of Art.  The paintings will be there until mid August.

Art fair promoters have to work with local authorities on the locations for art fairs and any permits that are required, rules to be followed and registrations of individual artists to be processed.  I’ve done hundreds of fairs over the last decade and one of my favorites is in Palm Springs.  A few years back we had an issue where the city decided to move our venue from the center of town (loads of foot traffic and drive-bys to supplement our other advertising) to the civic center for the following season.  We appealed to the council and they relented.

A few weeks ago our promoter commented that the permits for the two March shows hadn’t been approved yet.  We protested further and pointed out that the reason they’d given was no longer an issue.  Then more burning hoops were given.  This from an eblast from West Coast Artists:

After meeting with the City of Palm Springs’ Special Event Team today here are the new requirements for the Desert Art Festivals.

Loading: We are allowed to reserve 7 parking spaces in the small parking lot for loading at the end of the event. We are to stagger the loading process so that all of the 60 artists use those 7 spaces. There is no parking on Alejo and no parking on Palm Canyon Drive for the purpose of loading. We are not allowed to close the parking lot for loading or unloading.

Cross Walks: We are to have crossing guards at the crosswalks because some people neglect to push the button for the crosswalk. This is perhaps a safety issue?

Parking Attendants: We had contracted with the property owner across the street from the park, 4 acres, and we must have Community Service Officers patrolling the lot and showing people how to park during the event. Two officers at $55.00 an hour.

Police Presence: We are required to have 2 Palm Springs Police officers at the event on Saturday morning for a minimum of 4 hours to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

Traffic Plan: We are required to have a Traffic Plan for the parking lot across from the park where we intended to have Patrons park. The spaces in the dirt lot should be delineated so that people know how to park….

After all of these new requirements and the fact that the City Manager, Mayor, and several of the City Council Members have made untrue, disparaging remarks regarding the event to the public, I can’t help but feel like they do not want the Desert Art Festivals in Palm Springs any longer.

After the meeting in Palm Springs, I attended the meeting in Rancho Mirage. They have welcomed us with open arms and are going to push the Permit application through the City at an accelerated pace. 

At The River in Rancho Mirage management had very few requirements. They have opened up their facility and are very excited to welcome our events. Our events are actually WANTED in the City of Rancho Mirage. The comment was “We would love to take the events from Palm Springs!”

Later on it became apparent that The River were not able to accommodate us on the 21st/22nd due to an existing event scheduled, but Indian Wells welcomed us back too, for that weekend.  Not all cities are the same!

Here’s my schedule for the month:
Fairs:

Mar 7th: 29 Palms Art Gallery Spring Art and Craft Fair, 29 Palms, CA.
Mar 14th: “Art on Main St“, Old Town La Quinta, CA
Mar 21-22nd: Desert Art Festivals, Indian Wells, CA  (Their website might not be up to date yet, it’s on the corner of Cook and 111).
Mar 28th: “Art on Main St“, Old Town La Quinta, CA

Shows:
Feb 2020-Aug 2020 Ontario Airport.  Show case at terminal displaying 5 mixed media paintings.

Mar 2nd-26th: Artists 55+.  Walter N. Marks Center for the Arts, College of the Desert, Palm Desert, CA. Reception March 10th 5-7pm

Mar 5th-22nd: 29 Palms Guild Members Juried Exhibition. <29 Palms, CA.  Reception  March 7th, 5-7pm. 

Classes:
Mar 19th: Painting for Absolute BeginnersBorrego Art Institute. $110.  Contact me to book.

 

Variable student levels.

This month I had a full class scheduled for my Painting for Absolute Beginners class at Borrego Art Institute.  I only accept six students due in part to space, but also because the small class allows me to give more individual attention.

On Monday I emailed my students to check they were still on boards, but one of a group of three had pulled her back and was not sure she was able to come.

So, probably five.

Then the day before the class the coordinator for the group also said that she wasn’t able to attend, and because she was the driver, the third member of the group was also grounded.

So, down to three.

As I left the house on the Friday morning, prepared for three students, something told me to go back and get some extra water pots, just in case.  As I was setting up, my phone rang.  A lady asked if there was any room in the class, she was on her way into town.  The reason she hadn’t called earlier was that she and her husband were rving in Ocotillo Wells, and they have no cell service there for their provider.

Well, as it happens not only is there space, but I have enough equipment with me!  So we had a nice group of four students who all learned a lot and had a great day.

fourstudentswork_w

Working on the color-distance landscape exercise.

Of forging and finding

Came across this really interesting article about art forgeries and the science and scientists behind proving that the Perfect Fake is fake, but not perfect.

A gallery closes

I started working with Sm’Art gallery I think 3 years ago, maybe 4.  It was a strange start.  I received a cold-call email that sounded good, not the usual scam stuff, but the attachment wouldn’t open.  After some thought I replied.  It was a real offer, Alana had managed to have an email blast sent to the local attendees of ‘Art under the umbrellas’ show.

I signed up for the co-op gallery – we share the rent and working in the gallery.  I have made many good contacts and friends over the years, taught a lot of classes (Alana was instrumental in the design of the ‘Painting for Absolute Beginners’ class and the contact that let to a season of intermediate classes, the contents of which become follow on exercises for ‘Absolute Beginners’.

At the end of October, Alana decided to close the gallery.  A combination of factors came together at the end of the lease and we had our final evening.  Here are a couple photos from the first 20 minutes before the crowd got there.

sm'Art studio co-op gallery

Just getting set up. Holly had created some ‘Day of the Dead’ paintings.

sm'Art studio co-op gallery

Sitting around chatting. We did quite a bit of business that night, especially Janice – who is the one with the gray shirt, on her device.

Sunday morning on the front porch

Mary started out as a friend of a friend on facebook and then took my Painting for Absolute Beginner’s class, then became a very close friend.  Shortly after that class, a couple years ago, I helped her create a painting for a friend.  I hadn’t realized that she had not had time since then to pick up the brushes.  A lot of life had happened.  A few weeks ago I went over to help guide her through another painting.  This time she has a new home with a wonderful front porch.  We have to paint out on the front porch because she has cats and I have allergies.

Mary painting on the front porch.

A little cramped on that table but we make it work.

Mary lives quite a way from me so we get our painting stints in sporadically and yesterday morning I was able to swing by for a couple hours before her grandson’s party and my reception for her to make progress on this sunset.

We weren’t able to finish yesterday but hope that we will do in the next session.  She made good progress.  Part of the challenge has been vision issues.  Mary recently had major eye surgery.  She can see colors better now, but the amount of light is difficult for her and towards the end as the sun came over, she had to resort to the shades.

Half finished painting

Still needs a little work in the middle, and all the clouds at the bottom need to go in.

 

Two classes in Yuma

Last week I was in Yuma to do two classes at the Yuma Fine Art Center.  On the Wednesday afternoon we had the watercolor collage and card class:

students at the watercolor collage workshop

Diving in

students at the watercolor collage workshop

They made lots of cards

… and on Thursday I had a very enthusiastic painting student for the Absolute Beginner’s class.

painting for absolute beginners student

Trying all the watercolor techniques in one painting.

 

Another fun class

fourplusteacher

Four students had a lot of fun at sm’Art Studio on Tuesday creating artworks and cards in my Watercolor Collage class.  I’m going to run the class again next month (date TBD – let me know if you’re interested) at sm’Art, but it’s also running next Wednesday at Yuma Art Center. (sign up here).