Archive for the ‘art festival’ Category

Creative Eros in The Gallery at Redlands

October 23, 2021

New Bison Compositions in Progress. 10 x 13″ frames. $100

I spun myself like a dervish around that idea.

Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

In recent days, it seems that every sentence that flows from the mind of Elizabeth Gilbert sends waves of creative bliss through me. When I read the “dervish” remark above, I recalled my cycle of bison sketches from a few months back and decided to pull some of them out of the pile. I found one that I had started and then completely forgot. Today I have it laid out on the gallery drafting table, along with a pair of bison I sketched in watercolor during last weekend’s Art Walk. I haven’t counted my bison but I’m sure the number exceeds ten by now, and yet I feel that I’ve barely gotten into this subject. I want more.

Daily Drawing and Journal Practices

The Gallery at Redlands is making plans to spotlight our artists in the coming months. We recently had an excellent response to the work of Cecilia Bramhall and decided to proceed with these plans. In two weeks we will present Paula Cadle, our potter who also creates exquisite drawings. Paula will join us for a Gallery Art Talk on Friday evening, November 5 from 7:00-9:00, and our monthly Art Walk the following day, 10:00-3:00.

Paula Cadle Pottery

Paula Cadle Pottery

Paula Cadle graduated from Rocky Mountain School of Art in Denver, Colorado. She joined Fletcher-Keating Graphics after art school and worked in advertising and commercial art for several years before concentrating on fine art. Paula’s media includes clay and pen and ink. She prefers to focus on hand-built pottery but still does occasional graphic design. She describes her work as follows:

My clay work is built with coils and slabs that are hand-worked into various shapes and styles. I use white earthenware clay and sometimes stoneware clay for the larger pieces. My clay designs are an extension of my love for drawing and graphic arts. I paint original designs on the clay using bright colors. Under-glaze colors are applied two or three times and then fired. A clear or colored glaze is sprayed or brushed on for a second firing. Some of my pieces have over-glazes in silver or gold and are fired a third time. I love colors and use them quite liberally. Sometimes I add weavings or other ornamentation for a unique appearance. My joy is in making the clay artwork and decorating it. Once finished, it is time to let go and move on to a new design or idea.

Meanwhile Outside the Gallery, the Hot Pepper Festival Parade Goes By . . .
Small Portion of the Festival Spanning Three Streets Downtown

Multitudes are still enjoying a good time outside as the Hot Pepper Festival continues throughout the day. And I’m finding plenty of enjoyment inside the Gallery.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Hot Pepper Festival in Palestine all Day Saturday

October 23, 2021

My Promise to Sketch Daily (framed 8 x 10″ watercolor, $100)

. . . I’ve always had the sense that the muse of the tormented artist–while the artist himself is throwing temper tantrums–is sitting quietly in a corner of the studio, buffing its fingernails, patiently waiting for the guy to calm down and sober up so everyone can get back to work.

Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

Thank you, Elizabeth for eliciting a violent belly laugh from me! I knew of this author’s work since Eat Pray Love, but never read her till I picked up Big Magic. Now, as I read these pages, I feel her presence as though she is sitting in the room conversing with me directly about the dynamics of a creative life and the discipline demanded to keep the fires burning. At my current age, I hope I am beyond that temper tantrum stage; I know the frustration of feeling behind in my work, and try to tamp that down as best I can. I’m retired, for God’s sake. I daily have to remind myself that it is O.K. to slow down the pace and be glad to be alive and receptive to what’s going on. Yes, I have a phalanx of deadlines aiming their spears at me, but at 6:30 this Saturday morning, I am glad the weekend is here. Palestine will kick off its 9:00 parade and the Hot Pepper Festival will get underway.

While it was still dark outside this morning, I stepped out onto Queen Street and began my habitual trek toward the Kroger Store at the lower end of town (I’m still on this October challenge–10,000 steps per day). Street vendors are already at work, putting up tents, hauling out tables, crates, furniture, setting up displays, talking softly among themselves–the same sounds I enjoyed two weekends ago at the Edom Art Festival.

Edom Art Festival Two Weeks Ago

For illustration, I choose Edom, since currently the Palestine streets are strewn with boxes, strung out cables, parked trailers and half-raised tents, not a pretty sight. But they still have two-and-a-half hours till show time. Displays will be in place then, and people will flood the booths with enthusiasm. I close my eyes still and smile at the warm memories of the Edom Festival and the good will felt among the multitudes of people finally getting out into the public for an event worth visiting. The temperatures those days were good, and promise to be so today as well.

New Window Display of Gallery at Redlands from the Lobby

I’m looking forward to going downstairs to open the Gallery in a few hours as well. Normally I close from 2:00-5:00 in the middle of the day in order to transition to the restaurant and bar hours lasting till 9:00. But today with the festival just outside, I plan to stay open all day. So it’s going to be a long stretch. Fortunately I have much to do, so if there are long stretches with no one coming inside to browse, I’ll still have assignments to complete.

View from Oak Street

Leaning forward, anticipating a lovely Saturday, I thank you for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Friday Morning in the Gallery

October 15, 2021

Quiet Friday Morning in The Gallery at Redlands

Beware when the great God lets loose a thinker on this planet.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Circles”

Good Day, from Palestine’s Gallery at the Redlands. I was fortunate to arrive early yesterday morning and the Friday is quiet enough (so far) for me to finish my university responsibilities with little interruption.

Tomorrow we will enjoy our monthly Art Walk in Palestine, with over twenty businesses downtown displaying the works of local artists, many of the artists themselves present to greet patrons. I will spend the day painting inside Wells Creek Crossing in Old Town Palestine, and Carol Moore will run our gallery during business hours. Come out and see us and enjoy the arts from 10-3:00.

Some of the quality of today involves researching and writing the lectures for Monday’s Ethics classes at Texas Wesleyan University. Approaching mid-term, I’m deeply gratified to see a host of students “waking up” to fresh ideas and new vistas. One of them told me Wednesday that, as a business major and required to take Ethics, he was not enthusiastic, thinking he would be schooled in business law, tax codes, and a host of “ethics-related” business matters he had no interest in pursuing. He has become excited, reading the works of thinkers like Aristotle, Kant, Bentham and Nietzsche, and thanked me for opening the doors to these refreshing minds. That conversation alone made the entire semester worthwhile, and it makes it much easier to sweat my way through continual lecture preparation.

It’s time to get back to work in the Gallery. Thanks for reading.

First Day of Edom Art Festival in the Books

October 9, 2021

The birds they sang
At the break of day
Start again
I heard them say
Don’t dwell on what
Has passed away
Or what is yet to be.

Leonard Cohen, “Anthem”

Saturday evening finds me smiling as I sit in The Gallery at Redlands to finish out the night. The first day of the Edom Art Festival was 10-5:00 and I feel the fatigue, but it could have been worse. Yesterday after setting up, I was thoroughly whooped. I found myself retiring to bed in the Redlands Hotel at 10:00 and setting the 6:00 alarm for a guaranteed eight hours’ sleep. When I awoke with the alarm this morning, Leonard Cohen’s words rang musically in my ears, and I rose from my bed smiling, believing.

Arriving at the festival grounds by 8:00, I tweaked my tent display, finishing 30 minutes before the festival opened. The first patron who entered my booth took one look at my work and asked: “Are you the artist?” When I answered Yes, he continued: “Congratulations. These are beautiful.” That man probably has no inkling of how much his words lifted me, the first words of the day. And then, for seven hours, I sat in my chair outside the tent and witnessed it filled nearly the entire day. COVID cancelled our festival last year, so this year the public came out in full force and it felt wonderful being in the art circuit once again.

Though I stayed busy most of the day, I still found time to think over some art-related matters while watching the patrons entering and exiting my booth. My recent readings of Heidegger’s lectures on Nietzsche have called to mind a passage from Emerson that echoes what both Heidegger and Nietzsche are discussing in their own separate musings:

One moral we have already deduced, in considering the circular or compensatory character of every human action. Another analogy we shall now trace; that every action admits of being outdone. Our life is an apprenticeship to the truth, that around every circle another can be drawn; that there is no end in nature, but every end is a beginning; that there is always another dawn risen on mid-noon, and under every deep a lower deep opens.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Circles”

As I sat in my booth today and shared with patrons my own artistic odyssey, I felt an emotional tug as I recalled the constant push to create better. At this stage of my life I feel that I am learning so much more about making art than at any other time of my journey. I love Emerson’s essay “Circles,” particularly the part where he creates this powerful visual picture of a person pushing out from him a creative force that piles up like a berm surrounding him. The next push has to be harder, so the material can go over the top of the berm, spreading the circle further out and higher. And with each successive push, more force is required to expand the circle. This is how I feel as an artist these days. I want every painting effort to exceed in quality the one spent on the last painting. I love that sense of challenge. As soon as the festival ends tomorrow and I catch up on my college grading, I intend to pick up the brush and get back to work.

The day has been filled with wonder. Thank you for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Dawning of a New Day

September 24, 2021

Sun Slowly Rising on Sacred Heart Church. 400 N. Queen Street

The great thinker is one who can hear what is greatest in the work of other “greats” and who can transform it in an original manner.

Martin Heidegger, “The Being of beings as Will in Traditional Metaphysics,” Nietzsche

We woke up a little after 5 this morning, no doubt excited about the possibilities of another weekend in our Gallery here in Palestine, Texas. Art Walk is tomorrow, 10-3:00, with twenty businesses downtown featuring artists on display. Sandi and I are also anticipating great happenings at the Edom Art Festival October 9-10.

I am sitting up in bed, resuming my reading of Heidegger’s Nietzsche lectures. Across the street, Sacred Heart Church just tolled nine times to signal it is 7:00 (that happens frequently in this town). Chuckling after counting the bells, I suddenly came across this sterling quote that I have put at the top of the entry.

Again . . . The great thinker is one who can hear what is greatest in the work of other “greats” and who can transform it in an original manner.

As a child, I always admired all the other students in my classes who raised their hands, answering questions posed by the teachers. I always believed them to be much more intelligent than I could ever be. When I entered the ministry as an adult, I knew I had good memory, always quoting scriptures at length. But I knew I wasn’t really a “thinker.” Entering seminary, I knew I could count on good memory to recall particular texts to answer questions posed on exams. But I was only confirming what Roland Bainton of Yale once said: “One can earn a Ph.D. at an accredited university by memorizing a great number of facts, and entertaining no thoughts.” It wasn’t until my years of doctoral study that something happened for which I remain grateful: my ability to paraphrase and synthesize more than one text and more than one thinker while focused on a particular subject. I knew for the first time in my life that I was actually thinking critically, creatively. And then I entered the high school classroom.

Three decades later, I still find profound satisfaction in reading the kinds of texts required for scholarly activity (yes, I still read novels and poetry) even though I’ve spent the past four semesters in my art studio and gallery, not in classrooms. But when Texas Wesleyan University came calling last month, it was good to know that I had not rusted intellectually; I was still engaged in critical/creative thinking as a lifestyle rather than a job to perform.

The Heidegger quote above immediately called up in my memory one of my favorite Emerson texts from “The American Scholar” which I now paraphrase:

The creator of the first age breathed into himself the surrounding world of kindred spirits, lingered over the words and images, rearranged them in a fashion of his own liking, and pushed the new creation back out into the world.

Here is the Emerson quote: The scholar of the first age received into him the world around; brooded thereon; gave it the new arrangement of his own mind, and uttered it again.

The morning has been terrific, as I’ve had the pleasure of communing with Heidegger, Nietzsche, Schelling, Hegel and Leibniz to name a few of these creative spirits.

But now it is after 9:00 and some things need to be done in the gallery before we open at 10.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Quick Work on a Pair

August 27, 2021
Attempting the Lonesome Dove Pairing

I cannot believe the afternoon has already arrived. It’s been a busy Friday in the Gallery at Redlands. I began this 8 x 10″ watercolor around 9:30 and have been dividing my time between Lonesome Dove and Aristotle (painting and Texas Wesleyan ethics lecture). I know this sounds nuts, but I love it everytime two seemingly disparate fields flow into one another. While waiting for portions of the watercolor to dry, I’ve been re-acquainting myself with Aristotle’s Doctrine of the Four Causes as expounded in his Physics.

Aristotle argued that all living things have formal, material, efficient and final causes embedded in them. The efficient cause refers to the energy, the urge for one to develop, to strive, to mature toward that final, complete cause. The final cause is the target, the terminus, the realm of completion. And when people ask where the final cause resides, the answer is: within you. Aristotle (later echoed by T. S. Eliot and a host of others) held that the end is already contained in the beginning. People have their own ways to interpret this, but I like to think about my own impulses to make art. From the time I was quite small, I had the urge to draw, to color, to create my world on paper. No matter what trajectory my life followed, in education, in employment, in profession, I always came back around to art, because it was in me.

Another aspect of this Aristotelian argument that appeals to me is the notion of the painting already residing in the surface, though I’m staring at a blank piece of paper. I’m not as anxious as I used to be to touch the brush or pencil to the paper, because I can already “see” what I want to do within this white rectangle. The reason I couldn’t wait to begin today’s watercolor is because I have had this image in my eye for days after countless hours spent sorting out photos and movie clips of Lonesome Dove. My only regret with this small piece is that I left no room behind the characters; I really wished to overwhelm the composition with the Llano Estacado. Maybe I’ll attempt this again later with more background available.

Thanks for reading.

Survey of the Palestine, Texas Art Walk

July 17, 2021
Promotional T-Shirt Design

Jean Mollard, owner of the Redlands Hotel, remains a mover and shaker for Palestine’s public events. She and I just completed a walking circuit of all the businesses that supported today’s Art Walk and I wanted to post pictures and descriptions of what we saw:

Hailey Perkins at Shearz & Beerz

Hailey Perkins was our first stop at this cool barber shop called Shearz & Beerz. Hailey works with acrylic and gouache in pastel colors to present a light and lively series of compositions. We are happy to know of her enthusiasm to participate with us again when we do this event in August. The atmosphere of this shop is warm and inviting, as is Hailey’s art.

Cecilia Bramhall, Co-Ed Shop

The lunch hour had called Cecila away as we were passing through the Co-Ed Shop, but we enjoyed visiting her husband stationed at her post, and were delighted to catch up with Cecilia at the end of the day. She was fortunate to sell work inside the Co-Ed Shop as well as inside The Gallery at Redlands today.

Cairo Reyes and Deanna Pickett Frye, Old Magnolia Sandwich Shop

Cairo and Deanna were all smiles as they stood in the midst of their expansive display space. A few of the Palestine businesses were large enough to support more than one artist on location.

Emily Thompson, Duncan Depot Antiques

By the time we reached Duncan Depot Antiques, Jean could not resist any longer. She fell in love with one of Emily Thompson’s pieces and reached for a large bill. Congratulations on your sale, Emily. We look forward to seeing you again in August!

Pam McAdams, Old Town Vintage

Pam McAdams has worked for years in acrylic and resin and has enjoyed representation in galleries in neighboring Tyler, Texas. She had quite a gathering of patrons about her when we dropped by her display in the afternoon.

Lindsey Sifers, Barnyard Boutique

Patrons dropping by the Barnyard Boutique for coffee or ice cream were greeted just inside the entrance by Lindsey Sifers and her mixed media compositions of acrylic, watercolor, crayon and pencil. She happily reported that it was a good day for conversations and art sales.

Jordan Crabill, @theglammedmillennial

Directly above the Barnyard Boutique is a magnificent loft studio where Jordan Crabill has created and sold her large acrylic paintings since February of this year, about the same time Sandi and I took possession of The Gallery at Redlands. The works displayed behind her have already been purchased by a hair salon due to open soon. Meanwhile, Jordan continues to crank out new work and receive patrons in her Manhattan-style loft, a real artist’s dream. Her BFA from University of Texas at Tyler is being put to work early.

Taylor Hammons and Daniel Maldonado, Home Grille Steakhouse

Taylor and Daniel have flourished today inside the Home Grille Steakhouse, she with her dream catchers and image transfers; he with his combination acrylic, watercolor and spray paint compositions. I was pleased to make Daniel’s acquaintance again–we had met under the art tent at Palestine’s recent Dogwood Arts Festival.

Daniel Maldonado at work
Miyoko Callaway art at Congressional Office of Lance Gooden
Sandi visits with Miyoko Callaway

Last month I was privileged to make Miyoko’s acquaintance, not long after she displayed her work at Dickens Jewelry. This time she was invited to display in Congressman Gooden’s office adjacent to The Redlands Hotel.

Abigail Killian with her photography, The Redlands Hotel

I introduced the three Killian sisters in the previous blog, as I met them while they were setting up in The Redlands Hotel lobby close to our gallery. Jean and I closed out our walking tour by re-visiting this creative trio.

Meagan Killian works on a painting
Kaitlyn Killian closes a sale

David Tripp’s work at L&L Shoes

Last month I remained in The Gallery at Redlands while L&L Shoes agreed to set up my work for display. Today I divided my time between The Gallery at Redlands and touring the entire Art Walk, meeting and interviewing the artists-in-residence. Next month, we have decided that Sandi will occupy and operate The Gallery at Redlands while I spend the day displaying and demonstrating my watercolor technique inside L&L. My thanks goes out to this business for agreeing the past two months to show my work in my absentia.

We are going to do this again August 21. More details to follow. Thanks for reading.

Gallery at Redlands Features Kevin Harris Tonight

May 22, 2021
Musician Kevin Harris from 7-9 tonight at Gallery at Redlands

We are a tongued folk. A race of singers. Our lips shape words and rhythms which elevate our spirits and quicken our blood.

Maya Angelou, Order out of Chaos

Morning Watch in The Redlands Hotel

To live in recollection is the most perfect life imaginable; recollection is more richly satisfying than all actuality, and it has a security that no actuality possesses.

Søren Kierkegaard, Either/Or

Awake since 6:30, my favorite part of weekends is sitting in the morning light from our second-story room in the historic Redlands Hotel and looking through the fire escape railings at the magnificent Carnegie Library across the street. How I wish I could have lived here in the days when that was a functioning public library! Words fail me when I try to describe the vibe of living in a railroad hotel built in 1914 and look out the windows upon a city steeped in history.

Tonight will be our second and final night of a Major Sale including art from The Gallery at Redlands as well as additonal work brought in for the sale. I always look forward to gallery nights and the public, but frankly, all I can think about this morning is the luxury of hearing Kevin Harris perform this evening. It has been too long. If you have not heard the sonorous, soulful voice of Kevin, accompanied by his amazing guitar skills, you won’t want to miss tonight’s two-hour event. Earlier this morning, I read Kierkegaard’s sentiment that words are too heavy and clumsy to describe effectively the quality of live music. Indeed. I am always tongue-tied when trying to tell people the effect Kevin’s voice has had on me since the days I shared space in this gallery with his radio station Smooth Rock 93.5 FM. Just the sound of him talking through the morning show had the power to remove any sting of anxiety or unpleasant thoughts I was experiencing. But when I heard him perform for the first time, I realized that his musicianship was just as overpowering as his conversation. So please, if you are in the area, stop by The Redlands Hotel tonight from 7-9. We are at 400 N. Queen Street, Palestine, Texas.

Kierkegaard’s quote above regarding recollection stirred me over morning coffee. My company is called Recollections 54, acknowledging my birth year and my body of art work that comprises my personal recollections of an America that embraced me during my early childhood in the fifties. My recollections of small-town America are filled with images of scenes dying out as history adds new chapters. These scenes are disappearing from our vision but not our memories.

My recollections from this morning have chosen to focus on the good memories, not the disappointments. And thinking back over the past four years spent with this town and its people fills me with gratitude. This community has been a veritable retirement gift for me. I continue to lean forward in anticipation of new friendships and new experiences.

Thank you for reading. We hope to see you tonight.

I make art in order to remember.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

A Special Day

April 20, 2021
View from my Studio Eidolons

When the early morning light quietly

grows above the mountains . . . .

The world’s darkening never reaches

to the light of Being. . . .

To think is to confine yourself to a

single thought that one day stands

still like a star in the world’s sky.

Martin Heidegger, “The Thinker as Poet”

The pups woke me at 6:20, so the day seemed like most others at its beginning, except . . . Facebook greetings came pouring in. My Birthday. At age 67, I confess that for several years birthdays have tended to sneak up on me; I just don’t look forward to them as I did while younger. But I don’t mean to sound morose; my life in the past few years has been better than ever before, and I wish it could go on for another 67 years. But I have to say this: greetings from friends truly mean much more in these senior years than actual gift-wrapped presents received in earlier times.

After feeding pups and French-pressing my favorite New Mexico Pinon coffee, I found a nice comfy chair next to a window and opened my Heidegger volume to read what I was thinking as I waited for the coffee and looked out the kitchen window at the lovely light of this lovely day.

I am a sucker for antiquarian book stores. I found one in Palestine, a couple of blocks from our gallery. This morning I opened my recent purchase of a collection of Alexander Pope’s poems, the volume was published in 1876. I took a few moments to read the first page of his “Essay on Man.”

Let us (since life can little more supply

Than just to look about us, and to die)

Expatiate free o’er all this scene of man;

A mighty maze, but not without a plan.

The first two lines didn’t really “do it” for me, but Wow, the final pair! I feel that this sentiment will abide throughout this day. Birthdays probably make me more introspective and retrospective than other days (and that is saying plenty!). Though I have a huge stack of work in front of me, I believe I’ll find a way to think over this extensive gift of life and adventure that has been granted me.

This weekend I will be in Booth #71 at the Dallas Arboretum for Artscape 2021. I have a ton of new work I am packaging for display and sale. Below are a couple of the more than 100 new greeting cards I have created. They are 5 x 7″ and I sell them for $5 each or 5 for $20. My art is on the front, text on the back, and they are blank inside.

I hate to close this so quickly, but I am going to be extremely busy the next three days preparing for the weekend art festival. Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Friday Morning Greetings from The Gallery at Redlands

April 16, 2021
A Quiet, Rainy Friday Morning in The Gallery at Redlands

I am going to astonish Paris with an apple.

Paul Cezanne

. . . through me Paris will live again, a little more, a little brigher.

Henry Miller

Through our efforts, may Palestine and East Texas find more enrichment in the arts.

The Twelve and the Dogwood Arts Council

Outside, Palestine is a cool 57 degrees, dark and trying to rain. Inside The Gallery at Redlands, all is quiet–a perfect morning for reading and painting. I’ll return to the watercolor soon. But for now, my head is buzzing from yesterday evening’s meeting in the gallery with the Dogwood Arts Council. The energy flowing through the council, along with stimulating ideas from local sculptor Dewane Hughes filled the gallery space with the light of enthusiasm and anticipation of better days ahead for visual artists and musicians.

About the time Sandi and I assumed the ownership of The Gallery at Redlands, I was re-reading New Art City and sopping up like a sponge the excitement of the New York City art groups that combined to put New York in the center of the global art market where it remains today. Gathering The Twelve (gallery artists) around me these days, and joining the circle of the Dogwood Arts Council, I feel an electricity generating, something in the air that could very well improve the art culture in this part of our world. Stay tuned for events forthcoming, now in the early planning stages.

Next weekend I will be in Booth #71 at the Dallas Aroboretum Artscape 2021. Because of the pandemic, I haven’t gathered with this group for two years, and we are more than ready to set up in the beautiful Pecan Grove of the Arboretum. Hours for the general public will be 9-5:00 Saturday and Sunday, April 24-25. Friday night, 6-8 is reserved for the VIPs who hold membership in the Arboretum. The festival will feature 85 juried artists.

The last Artscape — 2019
The Work Continues on the Ghost Signs from Hot Springs, Arkansas

It appears we could experience rain throughout this afternoon. In that case, I should be painting.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.