In Memoriam

October 2010 | BY | Issue 58 | NO COMMENTS

AmericanStyle lost a valuable and committed member of its team with the death of the magazine’s circulation/marketing director Susan Dunham on July 18. A resident of Lutherville, Md., she was 48 years old.

Diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996, Susan defied the odds and fought valiantly against the disease for more than 10 years. She continued to put in full days at work, expanding the reach of AmericanStyle to major craft shows and arts events nationwide, as well as building the magazine’s circulation to a healthy 60,000 committed subscribers. Her quiet strength and gentle humor despite repeated medical setbacks was an inspiration to the rest of the staff.

Susan was the single mother of two teenage daughters, Carolyn, 18, and Kristen, 16. On May 31, she realized a long-held dream of staying alive long enough to watch Carolyn graduate from high school.

Susan’s last day at AmericanStyle was June 22. The following morning, she and her daughters headed for Rehoboth, Del., for one final family beach weekend. Susan will be greatly missed.

Fall Arts Preview: Infusions of Art

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

Shows across the country tout awe-inspiring art like Pablo Picasso’s “The Reading” from the Seattle Art Museum. Credit: R.G. Ojeda/© 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS) New York/Réunion des Musées Nationauz/Art Resource, New York

It’s autumn, time for warm colors, cool evenings and some standout museum exhibitions. Expect everything from a brand new biennial in Washington State to exhibitions that focus on some of our favorite craft mediums—fiber, wood and clay. The high-end show circuit has also tipped its hand, presenting a range of enticing locations packed with artists, including a museum-based jewelry show in Baltimore and a new craft show in New York City. To keep you in the loop, we’ve talked to all the heavy-hitters to find out what’s new this season—museum renovations, big exhibitions, hot shows. Click the links below for plenty of ideas to fill your fall arts calendar.

An Artful Harvest

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | 1 COMMENT

“Pelvis IV” is part of “O’Keeffiana” at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. Credit: Georgia O’Keeffe Museum/Gift of the Burnett Foundation/© 1987, Private Collection

As the temperatures begin to dip, you might find yourself spending more time inside. With so many stellar exhibitions opening this fall, we suggest you venture out to spend time in the light-filled museums across the country. To help you choose which museums to visit, we’ve hand-picked our favorites:

  • The Bellevue Arts Museum in Washington introduces a knockout for clay enthusiasts: “BAM Biennial 2010: Clay Throwdown!” The newly minted biennial, though Jan. 16, features the work of ceramic artists living in the Pacific Northwest.
  • New Jersey’s Newark Museum kicks off a traveling exhibition that showcases the grandfather of the American Arts & Crafts movement in “Gustav Stickley and the American Arts & Crafts Movement. The exhibition offers works from 1900 to 1913—everything from furniture and textiles to metalwork and lighting, Sept. 15-Jan. 2.
  • The Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C., celebrates Fleur and Charles Bresler’s gift of 66 works of turned and carved wood in “A Revolution in Wood: The Bresler Collection. Expect pieces by pioneers and working wood artists alike that demonstrate the extraordinary range of expression in the organic medium, Sept. 24-Jan. 30.
  • Dive inside the mind of American icon Georgia O’Keeffe in “O’Keeffiana: Art and Art Materials” at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, N.M., Sept. 24-May 8, when the artwork is paired with preparatory materials like brushes, paints, sketch books and unfinished canvases.
  • Everything is bigger in Texas, and the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft’s “CraftTexas 2010” is out to prove it applies to the craft scene. Expect 73 works in every medium, ranging from traditional to cutting-edge, all created by Texas artists, Sept. 25-Dec. 30.
  • Rousseau. Monet. Renoir. These are just a few of the legendary artists shown in “Van Gogh, Gauguin, Cézanne and Beyond: Post-Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay” at the de Young in San Francisco. More than 100 paintings from the renowned Paris museum go on display Sept. 25-Jan. 18.
  • The American Folk Art Museum in New York launches its “Year of the Quilt” Oct. 5-February with “Quilts: Masterworks from the American Folk Art Museum. Soak in 35 quilts that demonstrate the visual power and historic importance of the medium.
  • Visitors to the Seattle Art Museum Oct. 8-Jan. 9 will get a glimpse of Paris: “Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso, Paris” explores every facet of the legendary artist’s career through more than 150 paintings, sculptures, photographs, prints and drawings.
  • “Photo Clay: In the Picture with Warren Mather” at the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, Mass., Oct. 9-Jan. 23, explores how the artist has pushed the boundaries of clay in the last five years. Mather’s unique process of transferring film, photography and computer-generated images onto clay promises to change how you see the medium’s potential.
  • The Indianapolis Museum of Art explores what Andy Warhol meant when he said, “good business is the best art” in “Andy Warhol Enterprises” Oct. 10-Jan 2. Through more than 100 paintings, drawings, sculptures, films and videos, the exhibition illustrates the themes that captivated the artist—commerce, consumerism, reproducibility and the business of art making.
  • “Collection Focus in Fibers: John McQueen and Carol Eckert at RAM” proves just how different fiber artists can be—even while working in the same scale and structure. Go Oct. 17-Feb. 6, when the Racine Art Museum in Wisconsin presents more than 25 pieces of the artists’ works from its permanent collection.

In Search of the Perfect Form

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

Cliff Lee’s “Yellow Prickly Melon” is glazed in Imperial Yellow, a hue that took 15 years to perfect. Credit: Douglas Lee

“Here is where I throw pots,” says Cliff Lee, gesturing toward a wheel and worktable covered in fine white dust. “Big mess,” he exclaims, and abruptly walks into the next room, where more works in progress, magazines and books cluster on tables and shelves. Two—no, three—vacuum cleaners sit idle nearby.

Here, in a 200-year-old barn in eastern Pennsylvania, Lee transforms kaolin clay from England’s White Cliffs of Dover into vessels inspired by Chinese Song dynasty porcelain. A back door leads to two gas-fired kilns while, out front, a koi-filled pond separates the barn from the house Lee and his wife Holly share with Caesar, an affectionate three-legged cat, and a bounding Bouvier dog named Hunter. “Looked for studio space for seven years,” Lee says. “When we discovered this—so happy!”

Although Lee’s command of English is impressive, he speaks with the staccato bursts of his native Chinese, enthusiasm often riding roughshod over syntax and grammar. And although he is not quite 60, he has the perspective of a much older man, the residue of a stroke he suffered in 2003. He speaks with pride, gratitude and few regrets about his life, legacy and work.

For more of “In Search of the Perfect Form,” pick up the Fall 2010 issue of AmericanStyle, on newsstands Sept. 7! Subscribe now and never miss an article.

Arts Focus: Out of the Minds of Babes

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

Only a child could imagine a long-legged, blue banana monster like “Glumbo the Rock Eater.” But only a master artist could bring it to life in glass. Credit: Russell Johnson

This long-legged creature wanders through the mountains, looking for rocks and clay, which it eats,” writes Campbell Glass, glass art designer, of his new creation, “Glumbo the Rock Eater.”

The description begged to be blown into a museum-quality glass sculpture. At least that is what the Museum of Glass Hot Shop Team thought. Campbell was 12 when he submitted “Glumbo” to the team.

“Glumbo,” along with “Recycle Robot,” “Pip,” “Mixed Up Flamy!” and “Shark Attack,” is among the 52 unconventional glass sculptures in an extraordinary exhibit that has visitors flocking to the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Wash.

For more of “Arts Focus: Out of the Minds of Babes,” pick up the Fall 2010 issue of AmericanStyle, on newsstands Sept. 7! Subscribe now and never miss an article.

Arts Walk: New Hope and Lambertville

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

The bridge on South Main Street provides a view of New Hope’s waterfall and the famous Bucks County Playhouse, which has welcomed the likes of Grace Kelly, Merv Grffin and John Travolta.

Sometimes, you just need to get away. Really get away. Not to your tried-and-true favorite cities, where you already have a favorite restaurant and know the gallery owners by name, but to a new place, where nobody knows you but everybody is happy to have you there.

We recommend a weekend trip to the side-by-side river towns of New Hope, Pa., and Lambertville, N.J. Both boast small-town charm, picturesque views of the Delaware River and great shopping, and both are extremely walkable. But as you’ll soon discover, these twin towns are anything but identical; each has a unique personality of its own.

New Hope has been a natural gathering place for artists since the late 1800s, when Hudson River School students discovered its beautiful landscape. Today, the 300-year-old community is a sophisticated country town that prides itself on being a place where all are welcome—and it shows. This quirky town packs 200 independently owned boutiques and galleries into just one square mile.

To begin your day, leave your car at the public parking lot on North Main Street, off West Bridge Street. Right across the street on North Main you’ll find Topeo South (15 N. Main St.). Owners Walter Hazzard and André Morin fill the store with American craft in all mediums, including figurative sculpture by Jeffery L. Hall and polymer clay jewelry by Wiwat Kamolpornwijit.

But that’s not all. Just a few doors down, you’ll find a second Topeo location (35 N. Main St.), which focuses on fine jewelry and glass. About 500 artists are represented between the two galleries, with 40 new names added to the roster each year. Newer artists include jeweler Sarah Graham, bronze sculptor Dave Rizzo and local jewelry artist Debra Pinciotti.

Continue up North Main to Gallery Piquel (39 N. Main St.), a newcomer to town. “My husband and I went on a two-year search across the country—from New York to Santa Fe—to find the perfect place to open our gallery, and we have found it here,” says owner Tamara Cannon. The gallery features work from artists local and international, established and emerging.

Turn around and head back down North Main Street, then turn right on West Bridge Street. There you’ll find J&W Gallery (20 W. Bridge St.). Co-owner Walter Czajkowski says they change their displays every three weeks, so things are always fresh. And on weekends during the warmer months, painter David Ohlerking hangs out on the sidewalk to do 15-minute oil portraits.

Continue on West Bridge to reach the Bucks County Gallery of Fine Art (77 W. Bridge St.). “Goliath,” a used-car-parts gargoyle sculpture by Peter Cimino, stands outside the gallery, which is housed in the fifth oldest residence in New Hope, built in 1798. Owner Howard Cooperman is planning his second annual sculpture show Oct. 1-30.

Head back down West Bridge Street toward Main Street, this time making a right onto South Main. Be sure to stop at Heart of the Home/Hearts Afire (28 S. Main St.), started in 1994 by mother-daughter team Phyllis and Catalina Castells. You’ll find functional craft, including pottery by Suzanne Crane, at Heart of the Home, plus plenty of jewelry and wearable art at the adjoining Hearts Afire.

As you cross the bridge on South Main Street, another Cimino sculpture on the right is sure to catch your eye. This time it’s “Draco,” a massive dragon that’s poised for attack outside Image Makers Art’s Gallery of Stars (12 W. Mechanic St.). Take a detour right onto Mechanic Street to visit the gallery, which features artwork by famous musicians and actors like Jerry Garcia and Anthony Quinn. Director Jim Wentzel is the unofficial ambassador of New Hope, happy to offer you a dinner recommendation or introduce you to any of his friends at other galleries on the block.

Turn back onto South Main and continue down to A Mano Galleries (128 S. Main St.), where you’ll end your first day. Owners Martin and Ana Leyland carry jewelry, wearable art, glass, clay, kaleidoscopes and furniture by national and local artists.

If New Hope is like your colorful, quirky aunt, Lambertville is like your slightly more serious, but equally engaging, rich uncle. It’s here you’ll spend your second day. The bridge connecting Lambertville to New Hope is easily walkable, with a separate pedestrian path, but there’s also public parking in town. Lined with Victorian houses and Federal row homes, Lambertville is known as “the antique capital of New Jersey,” so it’s only fitting that you begin at a craft-worthy antiques store.

When you cross the bridge, make your first left onto Lambert Lane. At A Stage in Time (9 Lambert Lane), owners Peter Prorok and Ramon Robledo focus on furnishings from the Arts & Crafts movement. You’ll find an armchair and server by Gustav Stickley, bookends by Roycroft and furniture by Charles Limbert. On the back wall, a picture window overlooking the Delaware River provides the perfect backdrop.

Next, make your way down Bridge Street to Greene and Greene Gallery (32 Bridge St.). Furniture artist Jeffrey Greene and his wife Valerie work hard to fill the gallery with a mix of work by 100 American artists who complement Greene’s own contemporary wood furniture.

Take a left onto North Union Street, and head north to Bjorn Glass (12 N. Union St.). The colorful window displays of sparkling contemporary glasswork are sure to grab your attention. Inside, you’ll meet owner Alexander Bjorn Papageorge, a glass artist who studied at the Corning Museum of Glass, and who now fills his gallery with glass vessels, sculpture and jewelry by a variety of artists.

Continue up North Union and make a right on Church Street. There you’ll find the new kid on the block, River Queen Artisan’s Gallery (8 Church St.). Artist-owners Jacqueline ter Kuile and Jane Spencer Wesby decided to break into the art world less than six months ago, but they knew they couldn’t go it alone. Their gallery represents 10 local artists, with work ranging from mixed-media sculpture to tempera painting.

For your final stop, make a right back onto North Union Street and head north. You’ll come to A Mano Galleries’ Lambertville location (42 N. Union St.), but don’t expect to find a repeat of New Hope here. The Leylands keep the artists 80 percent different between the two locations; in Lambertville you’ll see more furniture, including work by best-seller Sticks.

You can’t leave New Hope or Lambertvillle without feeling energized by the passion both communities have for the arts. Art is everywhere, from the Wedgwood House bed & breakfast, where the ghost of artist Joseph Pickett is often reportedly spotted painting in the backyard gazebo, to restaurants like Triumph Brewing Company, which supports local artists by hanging their work on the walls. After a weekend here, you’ll have a few new friends, a few great stories and some fabulous new pieces of art.

If You Go
Web Exclusive: Click here for an extended list of galleries in the area.

City Arts: Art on the Bayou

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

An expansive sky view of Houston’s Museum District, anchored by Hermann Park’s Mecom Fountain. Credit: Hugh Hargrave/Greater Houston CVB

Houston may indeed be known as oil country and the home of the NASA space center, but it is also a Southern city with sprawling live oaks, lemon-scented magnolias and a deep-rooted art scene with some 70 art galleries and about a dozen art museums and centers.

The city’s art museums are mostly clustered in three distinct areas, and once a year the Houston Museum District Association makes them easily accessible by deploying a fleet of shuttle buses and waiving entry fees. So for sheer convenience and the added fillip of a crowd’s excitement, plan to visit Houston this year on Saturday, Sept. 25, the city’s 14th annual Museum District Day. Houston is abuzz on this very arts-centered day—from the erudite remarks of veteran museum-goers to the musings of first-timers and the fresh curiosity of children.

For more of “City Arts: Art on the Bayou,” pick up the Fall 2010 issue of AmericanStyle, on newsstands Sept. 7! Subscribe now and never miss an article.

Style Spotlight: Finds

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

“One of my favorite things to do is sit in my garden and watch and listen to birds,” wood artist Dona Dalton says. “I like how they watch me, too.” Whether she’s working at the band saw, with a sander or drill, or mixing layers of paint, her goal is to capture birds’ gestures and personalities in poplar and pine. Dalton crafts a range of species, from common crows and Carolina wrens, like the pair seen here, which retail for $100 each, to exotic birds like scissortails and kingfishers. Her work is available at Left Bank Gallery in Orleans, Mass., Art & Soul Gallery in Boulder, Colo., and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art’s Center for Southern Craft and Design store in New Orleans, La. Explore more of Dalton’s work at http://donadalton.com.

Arts Travel: See California the Wright Way

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

Tour Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House as part of the “Wright Way California” trip.

How’s this for a perfect weekend: sunshine, great food, organic wine, famous architecture and plenty of craft. If that sounds good, check out the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust’s “Wright Way California: Beaches, Bungalows and Wright” tour Oct. 12-18.

Participants will enjoy private tours of Wright’s iconic Hollyhock and Freeman houses, explore four Greene and Greene masterpieces and visit architect Richard Meier’s Getty Center.

Since man does not live on art alone, the package also covers an organic wine tasting at the Casa Barranca Winery, accommodations, three breakfasts, four lunches and three dinners.

The trip continues with the Pasadena Heritage’s annual Craftsman Weekend, featuring 80 exhibitors of antique and contemporary Arts & Crafts furnishings and decorative art, and concludes with a tour of artist Sam Maloof’s residence and woodworking studio.

Reservations will be accepted through the end of September. Log on to www.gowright.org to learn more.

Arts Travel: Artful Dining

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego’s Museum Cafe offers luxurious outdoor seating. Credit: Philipp Scholz Rittermann

Museums across the country pair a gourmet experience with art. We suggest you try them all. Here’s a quick sampling:

Come prepared to sink into your chair at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego’s Museum Cafe in La Jolla, Calif. The outdoor seating overlooks the Pacific Ocean, and the organic ingredients are locally sourced by chef Giuseppe Ciuffa. Breakfast and lunch include classics like huevos rancheros and caprese, along with more adventurous dishes like the mango jalapeño quesadilla. Prices range from $7.50-$13.95, and cafe patrons receive 20 percent off admission to the museum. Visit www.mcasdcafe.com for details.

Sure, you could stay on the ground floor of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and enjoy a meal at Caffè Museo while surrounded by art. Or, you could trek up to the roof (museum admission is required) and enjoy the modern and contemporary sculpture at the Rooftop Garden Blue Bottle Coffee Bar. Sip on coffee or tea and—if you have a sweet tooth—dig in: the coffee bar offers cookies and cakes inspired by artworks on view at the museum. Prices range from $2.50-$8 for drinks and desserts. Visit www.sfmoma.org for more information.

Finally, hit the East Coast for your choice of dining experiences at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. The Garden Café Français offers French cuisine by award-winning chef Michel Richard in honor of “From Impressionism to Modernism: The Chester Dale Collection” through Jan. 2, 2012. If you’d like a panoramic view of the sculpture garden, hit the Pavilion Café for specialty pizzas, sandwiches, salads and desserts. And if you need a pick-me-up, go straight to the Espresso and Gelato Bar, where you’ll find an assortment of snacks and beverages. Visit www.nga.gov for all the details.

Editor’s Note: High Season for the Arts

August 2010 | BY | Fall 2010, Issue 73 | NO COMMENTS

Exciting things are happening all over the country this fall, including a show of Impressionist works like “Portrait of the Artist” by Vincent van Gogh at San Francisco’s de Young. Credit: © RMN (Musée D’Orsay)

I’m making a list and checking it twice, but Santa Claus doesn’t have a thing to do with it. My focus is fall arts, and the list is an item-by-item rundown of the new exhibitions and art shows I want to see.

In a sense, the fall arts season actually is a lot like Christmas, only without the wrappings and bows. Museums roll out major exhibitions, show promoters announce new dates, and arts groups unfurl plans for memory-making events that put the public and artists together. It’s like a gift that keeps on giving.

This year, museums themselves are getting into the act in a big way, inaugurating new galleries, new wings and entirely new buildings to house their collections. In New England, it’s the highly anticipated unveiling of a glittering new wing at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Farther south, it’s the addition of a sprawling new space at Richmond’s Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. And in Charlotte, N.C., it’s the Mint Museum’s up-and-up move in October: uptown and into a new five-story space in the city’s business district.

Out west, both the Crocker Art Museum and the Oakland Museum of California have brand-new spaces to show off. In western Canada, all eyes are on the undulating new metallic confection designed for the Art Gallery of Alberta in Edmonton. Even in Alaska, the Anchorage Museum, already the state’s largest, has just gotten 80,000 square feet larger with a new addition.

The fall arts exhibitions lineup is equally enticing: from van Gogh in San Francisco to the Bresler Collection of turned and carved wood in Washington, D.C. One event we encourage you to take special note of is American Craft Week, a 10-day celebration of handmade decorative and functional objects that (as of this writing in late July) already includes craft retailers and arts groups in 43 states and Nova Scotia, all hosting events between Oct. 1-10 to promote great American crafts.

AmericanStyle is a major sponsor, and new participants are signing up every day, so be sure to keep checking the American Craft Week website (www.americancraftweek.com) for updates prior to the Oct. 1 kick-off. Then get involved. As the organizers spell out in their invitation, if you create, sell, display, promote, collect or just plain love American craft, come join the celebration!

Hope Daniels
Editor-in-Chief

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