Thursday, April 30, 2015

Laurie Schreiber: Sharon Arnold Captures a Fantastical World

Laurie Schreiber's article about artist Sharon Arnold is featured in the upcoming summer issue of Still Point Arts Quarterly. Here is an excerpt from "Sharon Arnold Captures a Fantastical World."
Arnold’s approach to photography hasn’t changed in essence since she was a child, when she wielded a Brownie camera and sourced materials for dioramas at her father’s junkyard. As a young adult, she turned to creative writing, but in 1988, she again picked up a camera. She immediately returned to the diorama concept to create twilight or fairy tale worlds “hoping it will seem strangely familiar,” she wrote in her biography. . . .

"Queen of Hearts: Queen for a Day, 1958" is a triptych of begowned and polka-dotted figures, arms and eyes upraised in supplication. The image is a tribute to Arnold’s mother and her older brother, Chucky, who died that year at age eight in a bicycle accident. The title of the image comes from a 1950s television game show of the same name. Contestants, mostly women, talked about hardships in their lives; judged by an applause meter, the woman who had the most tragic story won prizes.

Laurie Schreiber is a freelance writer living in Bass Harbor, Maine.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

W. A. Polf: Lunch at the Dahesh

William-Adolphe Bouguereau,
Young Girl Going to the Spring
(The Water Girl), 1885.
W. A. Polf's story, "Lunch at the Dahesh," is featured in the upcoming summer issue of Still Point Arts Quarterly, a story of contrasting tastes for art and their impact—if you allow it—upon love and relationship.

Mark’s artistic sense was intuitive and emotional; he felt it in his gut. As a student, he had wept on his first visit to the Impressionist gallery at the Met. Sheila studied art with a scholarly focus; her approach was more disciplined, relying on a deeper understanding of the technical aspects of artistic composition. She appreciated the skill it demanded. Artists are seeking perfection, she believed. She wanted to parse that perfection into components she could understand.

W. A. Polf retired as a long-time hospital executive in New York City to write short stories in North Carolina. A native Californian, he lived in Manhattan for more than thirty years. His story, “Chickens,” will appear in a forthcoming issue of the Milo Review. “Chickens” was a finalist in the Glimmer Train 2013 Short Story Awards for New Writers, and won an honorable mention. He is the author of a collection of short stories, Magical Ballyglass and Other Stories.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Maya Chachava: Memory and Self-Identity

The work of Maya Chachava is featured in the upcoming summer 2015 issue of Still Point Arts Quarterly.

Maya Chachava's work stems from her interests in poetry, literature, memory, and nostalgia. The ongoing challenge of self-integration into a different culture remains a strong force that fuels her artistic practice. Her processes incorporate traditional painting materials as well as printmaking, drawing, digital, and encaustic media.

Chachava holds B.F.A. degrees in English language and literature from Tbilisi Pedagogical Institute of Foreign Languages and in Spanish and fine arts from Central Washington University. She also earned her M.F.A. in painting from the University of Washington. She is an associate professor of painting and drawing at Central Washington University.

Chachava’s work has been shown in over fifty national and international juried and invitational shows, with solo exhibitions in the United States and Europe. She is a recipient of numerous grants, fellowships, and awards.

My recent body of work is a new investigation of the concept of memory and how it affects my perception of self-identity. I took old family photos that I reprinted through different processes and superimposed drawings so that I could extend the process of making an image by working with multiple layers of media, creating visual “density” and narrative that is both precise and open to interpretation.

When I started this project I had a very vague idea of what it would look like at the end. My objective was to create images that would transpire an emotion, a recollection, perhaps a sense of time. I loved making these pieces and the excitement came, as always, from the variables and unexpected turns that happened along the way.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Katie Wilson: Painting the Figure

The art of Katie Wilson is featured in the upcoming summer issue of Stone Voices (Contemplative Art). Her painting process involves putting down paper collage using old wallpaper, decorative paper, and pages from books; laying in the drawing; and then pushing paint around, but not always in that order. Working with collage pushes her to be innovative and encourages spontaneous color, pattern, and texture.

My initial enthusiasm to paint the figure came when I acquired my grandmother’s childhood family photo album. I was compelled to bring the people of her world into my own through my painting, and I felt a need to get to know her, her friends, her backyard, her mother. I became familiar with what she wore to school and what her brothers wore to picnics. The album tells a story and I wanted to be a part of it. I was fascinated and excited to bring color and life to the images.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

What Is This a Picture Of?

What is this a picture of?

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche once posed this question. While no one wanted to state the obvious, someone in his audience finally said, "It's a picture of a bird." Rinpoche then replied, "It's a picture of the sky."

This teaching is retold by John J. Baker in "The Dharma in a Single Drawing," which appears in the Spring 2015 Tricycle.