Sunday, February 26, 2017

Dandy Lion

All of my life I have known that Dandelion is a weed, a very important one in nature, but have you ever heard of a Dandy Lion?  Well, neither had I until today at the Lowe Art Museum. 

We had our regularly scheduled meeting, but to our surprise, we were given a sneak peek at the new exhibit, Dandy Lion. To add even more excitement to this preview, we had a tour of the exhibit by Shantrelle P. Lewis, the curator. 

What exactly is a Dandy?  A Dandy (per Wikepedia) is a man who dresses elegantly and fashionably, He exaggerates his manners, including the way he stands and moves, and the way he speaks. He promotes himself. This Dandy Lion exhibit "highlights young men in city-landscapes who defy stereotypical and monolithic understandings of Black masculinity by remixing Victorian-era fashion with traditional African sartorial sensibilities." It is a way of young black men to express their sense of fashion, individuality and creativity. Fashion has always been used by black men to rebel and stand out. These emerging photographers and film makers bring us the black man as an individual with style and artistry, no longer a thug with sagging pants as shown by the media. This pride in appearance, demands respect.


The exhibit makes you look at these beautiful creations, in far away and local places, as well as the Dandy as a day-to-day member of his community. Shantrelle P. Lewis is not only articulate and knowledgeable as she discusses the exhibit, but you leave wanting more. She is excited and passionate about this Dandy Lion project.

Here's a video for your enjoyment. Click HERE.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Watercolor Workshop with Vladislav Yeliseyev

Many of you know that I have been drawing and painting my entire life. In 1977, I took an oil painting class and fell in love with this medium. It wasn't until I retired that I decided to take up watercolor. I am mainly self-taught in all mediums, with a class here and there. The Miami Watercolor Society offers workshops with some great artists from all over the USA, but I had never taken advantage of them. The new year inspired me to sign up for the workshop in January with Vladislav Yeliseyev.  

Watching Vlad demonstrate the first wash.

What made me decide to take this particular one after all these years? This artist's style is loose. It is very difficult to paint loosely after starting with oil. His style is fantastic. I was so intimidated that I even thought about losing the fee I paid and not attending. I forced myself to go the first day. There was so much to learn, but I was not handling my drawing well, perspectives were giving me the hardest time. I decided to try the second day and before I knew it, I wanted more and more. Speaking to the others in the class, I found out they were just as intimidated and as anxious as I was. Vladislav does not live far from Miami and I may just take another class at his art school in Sarasota. 
Thanks Vlad for the inspiration!.

First wash and wondering if anything would come of it.

The final product.

Same technique with color. I call this one "Sailing with Vlad"

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Miami Watercolor Society Signature Member Show

One of the benefits of being a signature member of the Miami Watercolor Society is exhibiting in this show.

Date: Thursday, November 10, 2016
Time: 7 - 9 pm
Place: Wirtz Gallery, First national Bank of South Miami

"Summertime Blues" - watercolor

MWS - 44th Annual Fall Exhibition

It is that time of the year when the Miami Watercolor Society exhibits their juried Fall exhibition!

Date: Saturday, November 5, 2016
Time: 7 - 10 pm
Place: Coconut Grove Art Festival Gallery

"Return to Wynwood" - watercolor

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Moving by Design

I have recently been obsessed with patterns. I signed up for a class this summer so that I could learn to digitally design patterns. So when I received an email from the Lowe inviting me to a Moving by Design to create expressive pattern movement, I figured I must go. The Beaux Art Gallery at the Lowe Art Museum was set up with tables, paper and pencils.  The workshop leader was Carol Kaminsky, Dance Program Director at the Frost School of Music. What happened next was a total surprise!

Carol asked us to stand, turned on some jive music and asked us to move around the gallery, any which way, to loosen ourselves up.  We were then asked to partner with someone to work with at the tables. We were given paper and pencil. The papers were folded in half. We then were asked to just doodle away on the paper, no specific design. One person was to lead and the other would follow the person's design on their half. The designs were not quite the same, but interesting. We then turned the paper over and switched roles. Our designs were again quite different and it was almost obvious to tell who lead. 

We were then asked to stand in a circle, soft music was turned on and we each interpreted our design on the paper. Who knew that a paper design could create such beautiful moves? The gallery was then split in half, just like the drawing paper. The partners walked up each side of the divide expressing their drawings with their hands, feet and torso.  This is when the title of the workshop made sense. Interesting to experience creativity on paper and on the dance floor. Not exactly what I expected, but creative and expressive nonetheless. Different mediums of expression!


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Funky Fish - Recycled Art

If you follow my blog, you may know that I have been painting sea shells this summer. I love the beach, nature,  and being able to create something from  nature's discards. 

Lately,  I have been seeing so may piles of plant cuttings on the sides of the roads. Mos of them seem to be palm fronds.  I have, in the past, painted palm fronds, but on a special type that is hard and able to hang like the ones below:

This year,  I am finding a different type of palm frond more suitable for creating than painting a seascape. They seem to resemble the shape of a fish, so I made my first Funky Fish, showed my family and posted a photo on my Instagram account. It was an immediate attention grabber. My 89 year-old mother and her caregiver got in on the production. On their daily walks in the neighborhood they picked up my "art" supplies. My Mom suddenly had a reason to get out of the house and looks forward to seeing the finished products. 

The Funky Fish are now available at Isabel's Fine Home Accessories in South Miami, along with painted shells, coconuts and driftwood, and the possibility of another shop carrying them. Who knew? 

Summer time and the painting is FUN!!!!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Return to Grovehouse Artists

Many years ago, I was a member of a great little artist co-op in Coconut Grove, Grovehouse Artists. It was a nice place to exhibit and socialize, but the most important thing I took from that experience was life-long friendships. The group inspired me and exposed me to many other groups. It was through the people I met there that I was able to participate in art in public places: painting a peacock, which is still standing on Grand Avenue and the manatee that was displayed in downtown South Miami and now lives in a private home in the area. I was able to take the course with Debra Cortese "I'd Rather be in the Studio" that pushed me into social media; a life. and business, changing experience.It was also a workshop with Debra about licensing my art that sent me in that direction and I now have many products through DENY Designs, Kess Inhouse and Geckorouge.

I think you can see that a lot of what is happening in my life today had its roots with the Grovehouse Artists. I recently re-joined their group, which is now "without walls'. The work is on line and social media with exhibits that take place wherever possible in the area. 

We will have our yearly Deering Estates exhibit with an opening reception on June 15th from 7 - 9 pm. On this night, the Deering is free to the public and you are all invited. The piece below, and hopefully a couple more, will be on exhibit. Join us!!

  • Time:  7 PM - 9 PM
    Place: Deering Estate
    16701 SW72 Avenue, Miami, Florida 33157