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Museum of Art & History Gets All Fired up about Clay

Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History @ the McPherson Center spilled from its lobby into outdoor patios and Abbott Square to “Experience Clay” last weekend. Congratulations to the museum and especially to organizer Susana Arias for such a successful program. Ceramic artists we know and love were there to demonstrate and teach eager participants, and the crowd was enthusiastic.  Here’s a little smattering of images from the event.

Susana and Cynthia Siegel’s other goddess.

Families came to see artists in action, like Richard Bennett sculpting from a lovely model.

Laurie Hennig got her ears on!

Allan Wilks gets a hand from a young apprentice.

Way to grow an audience!



Artists Hold up the Sky at Two Museums

The generosity of Monterey Bay artists is one thing nonprofits have depended on for years. Currently Monterey Museum of Art exhibits their annual Miniatures show, which is a museum-full of small works donated by artists in support of the cause.

 Each work is displayed with a wee box underneath it; a wee box with a wee slot into which raffle tickets are placed. In early January the tix collected for each box are put in a bag and a member of the public (not connected with the museum) draws the winning ticket. Tickets are $5 each or 7 for $30. In that way one might be the insanely lucky winner of a breathtaking little landscape by David Ligare or a gorgeous encaustic by Tracey Adams, a metal wall piece by Stefani Esta, a splendid antique-looking oil painting by Doane Hoag, an acrylic by Chris Winfield or Johnny Apodaca. A sweet watercolor of Big Sur pines by the late Rollin Pickford (may his sweet spirit linger for all whom he touched), or works by Barryt Masteller, Robynn Smith, Andrea Johnson, Claire Lerner, Judy Royee and a few hundred others. 

Who knows what the chances are…why calculate what you can’t control…even by filling one box with hundreds of tickets (which might be about worth it for some of these lovelies)?  So if you are so moved, check out the Monterey Museum even just for a dip into what local artists do when they work small. 

In Santa Cruz, the MAH currently exhibits the works donated in support of MAH’s vital arts programs.  I haven’t seen this show yet, but STARS this year has a Moroccan theme and should be a great party. In contrast to the work donated to MMA, the artists here have donated a major piece. A big gift that shows a big appreciation of MAH’s increasing interest in including local artists within the art exhibition schedule, an interest that seems to have sparked to life with the arrival of curator Susan Hillhouse several years ago. It’s an important role for a small museum, one that MAH fulfills splendidly. So, STARS takes place this Saturday December 11. It’s a big party for an important cause.

The Exhibitionist is funded in part by a grant from the Cultural Council of Santa Cruz County.