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Registration now open for 2015 Arts Summit

The Oregon Arts Summit in Southern Oregon, scheduled for Friday, Oct. 2, will include meetings and activities on Oct. 1 and 3, including a tour of the Ashland Shakespeare Festival’s production facility.

Registration now open for 2015 Arts Summit

As the single most important convening of the year for Oregon’s arts community, the Oregon Arts Summit is where seasoned professionals and emerging leaders gather together to learn, to share and to exchange ideas to take back to their organizations. The goal is to build relationships, networks and ultimately strengthen our statewide arts community.

Titled “Creative Exchange,” the 2015 summit is scheduled for Oct. 1-3 at the Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites. The majority of program content will be held on Friday, Oct. 2, but all are invited to participate in in pre-conference programming on Oct. 1 or to stay and enjoy the richness of the region through the weekend.

Click here to register.

Who Should Attend

  • Educators
  • Arts Organizations
  • Board Members
  • Art Associations
  • Elected Officials
  • Art Council Members

Where is the Summit Located

In order to showcase the richness of art across our entire state we are hosting the summit this year in Southern Oregon. This is an opportunity for attendees to experience the depth and richness of art across this region. We will have artist showcases from this area, opportunities to take art tours, to see shows and to meet Southern Oregon Arts Leaders.

Host Hotel:
Ashland Hills Hotel + Suites
2525 Ashland St
Ashland, OR 97520

Discounted rooms are available for Summit attendees. Contact the hotel directly to book your room.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is generously offering all summit attendees the opportunity to purchase tickets at a 20% discount.

Save 20% on any OSF performance from Thursday, October 1–Sunday, October 4. Buy your tickets online at with PROMO CODE 13440 or call the Box Office at 1-800-219-8161 to get your Oregon Arts Summit discount. Offer valid only for performances 10/1/15-10/4/15. Not applicable to previously purchased tickets. No refund/no exchanges. Offer does not apply to C seats.


Registration is limited and just $85 a person.

Click Here to Register

I hope to see you there!

Samantha Swaim

2015 Summit Director

Rogue Gallery Announces Call to Artists, Family Activities

Rogue Gallery and Art center logo Medford OregonCall to Artists

The Rogue Gallery & Art Center has several opportunities for artists to submit work for the fall. For more information visit or contact Kate 541-772-8118.

  • Holiday and gift items wanted for the Artisan Gift Shop. Specializing in local handcrafted items, the Artisan Gift Shops features gifts such as pottery, scarves, jewelry, candles, and handmade soaps.
  • The Rogue Gallery invites artists and artist groups to submit a portfolio of work for the 2016 Main Gallery Exhibition Series. Artists working in all media are encouraged to apply. Reserved for work of the highest quality, the Main Gallery features emerging, mid-career, and established artists from the region and beyond. The submission deadline is December 2, 2014.
  • The Rogue Gallery & Art Center Members’ Gallery will be accepting submissions gallery hours  Nov. 7th (10:00 am – 5:00pm) and 8th (11:00am – 3:00 pm). Artist must be a current member of the Rogue Gallery & Art Center. Membership can be purchased at the time of submission.
  • The Annual Members’ Exhibit: “The Sky is the Limit” drop off dates are gallery hours Friday, Nov. 14 (10:00 am – 5:00pm) and Saturday, Nov. 15 (11:00am – 3:00 pm). Artist must be a current member of the Rogue Gallery & Art Center. Membership can be purchased at the time of submission.

Family Art Saturdays

On the second Saturday of the month, the Rogue Studio is open for families to explore together with fun art projects and art hunts. Families are encouraged to create, explore, and enjoy seeing and creating together. Admission is free. All materials are provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult. No pre-registration is required. For more information contact Anna at 541-772-8118 or [email protected]

  • November 8th, 12:00-2:00pm: Drawing inspiration from the artist Liv Rainey-Smith’s woodcut art in the Community Gallery, the studio will have printmaking projects available.
  • December 13th, 12:00-2:00pm: The Rogue Studio will be making handmade holiday cards in celebration of the season.



The Rogue Gallery & Art Center is a non-profit community art center, founded in 1960 to promote and support the arts in the Rogue Valley. The center exhibits a wide range of artistic styles and mediums from local and national artists. Programming includes art educational opportunities for children and adults. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 pm Call (541)772-8118 for more info or visit



Art Reception at Goodbean Cafe

Flyer for Save Our Bees Reception for Grants Pass artist Judy Elliott at GoodBean Cafe Jacksonville Oregon October 15, 2014 from 5-8pm. Part of the Edgy in October Rogue Valley-wide art event.

ARToberfest 2014 Coming Soon!

Artoberfest 2014 flyer

Artoberfest 2014 flyer (back)

Save Our Bees Art Exhibit, Edgy in October GoodBean Reception

Save Our Bees!

Oregon Wild Iris with Bees, by Judy Elliott

Oregon Wild Iris with Bees, by Judy Elliott

Curator Hannah West and the ownership, management and staff at GoodBean Cafe in Jacksonville, Oregon are delighted to announce a special artist reception in conjunction with the second annual Edgy in October art event. Our featured art exhibit for October is Judy Elliott’s Save Our Bees, a collection of new works inspired by her concern about the plight of the honey bees. Her delicate and colorful paintings on silk depict bees and other pollinators paired with native Oregon wildflowers. The paintings don’t immediately suggest activist art, but Elliott’s passion to raise awareness of their plight and to share simple and inexpensive things anyone can do to help give bees the edge they need to survive the pressure they’ve been experiencing is anything but passive. As 80% of the food we eat depends on bees, we need them for our own survival, and Judy will share information about our long standing relationship and simple, inexpensive things anyone can do to help them at the reception.

The Honeylicker Angel, by Anna Elkins (book cover)

The Honeylicker Angel, by Anna Elkins (book cover)

We invite you to join us for Judy’s artist reception on Wednesday, October 15, from 5–8pm. She will give a brief artist talk at 6pm, then Jacksonville artist and author Anna Elkins  will read a brief passage about beekeeping from her most recent book The Honeylicker Angel at 6:30pm. Anna will have copies of her book available for purchase, and we’re sure she will be happy to sign them for you, too. Organic Dragon's Blood Braggot by Fire Cirkl Brewery, White City, Oregon

Complementary refreshments include sweet treats made with honey, created with love by the artists and the GoodBean’s in-house bakery, and tastings of organic Braggot, one of seven ancient varieties of honey mead, brewed and served by James Romano of Fire Cirkl Brewery in White City. Fire Cirkl produces 2 types of Braggot: “Dragon’s Blood” Braggot is a a hearty, warming drink, rich ebony in color and infused with juniper berries; “Naughty Heather” Braggot is a drier, copper colored mead with a generous amount of heather tips and flowers. Heather has been used to make meads and ales in Scotland for between 4,000–8,000 years (who knew?). If you like the taste, you can buy a glass!

GoodBean will also have a beautiful honey latte special until 7:30 pm.


Our reception coincides with two other Edgy in October receptions happening the same evening, both within walking distance of our location:

Oregon Tiger Lilies with Bees and Butterfly, by Judy Elliott

Oregon Tiger Lilies with Bees and Butterfly, by Judy Elliott

  • Across the street, our neighbors at the Jacksonville Barn Company are featuring artist Patrick Beste and avant garde watercolors by Mikey Staub. Beste, a member of Jacksonville’s Art Presence Art Center, paints wonderful abstracts. Jacksonville Barn Company’s artist reception, with wine tasting by John Guerrero, winemaker for Valley View Winery and producer of his own fine wines, and hosted canapés by Gogi’s Restaurant, begins at 6:00 pm. Oh, yes, we will be walking across the street to check out their reception for sure!
  • The Britt Festival is featuring photo artist resident Rita Ashley for Edgy in October. Ashley uses her camera to reveal the beauty in ordinary things. Her first camera was a gift from her father when she was 9 and she has never been without one since. Her work finds the art in chaos and reveals the hidden in the apparent. Ashley’s show will be on display for the Britt’s “On the Stage” concert featuring The Quiet American on Wednesday, October 15, at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7pm, so come early and take some time to view her show!

Edgy in October is a Rogue Valley-wide art event facilitated by local artist Cammy Davis to promote cultural tourism in southern Oregon by pairing exhibiting artists with local businesses for an “Edgy” themed event. The month-long event is broken down into four weeks, with a different area of the Greater Rogue Valley featured each week. For a complete list of all events and venues visit We hope you will come to our reception for Judy Elliott’s Save Our Bees art exhibit, and will add any further details to this post as they are confirmed.

If you’re sure you won’t be able to make it to the reception, maybe you’d like to buy Anna’s book now? It has 100% five star reviews on and an average of 4.33 stars on Goodreads!

Transparent Watercolor Paintings of the Watercolor Society of Oregon

Near Carlton, watercolor painting by Lane Hall

Near Carlton, watercolor painting by Lane Hall

October 4 – November 14, 2014

Watercolor Society of Oregon Public Reception: October 4th , 4:00 – 6:00pm

Rogue Gallery & Art Center Public Reception: October 17th , 5:00 – 8:00pm


By the Light of the Moon, watercolor painting by Betty Barss

By the Light of the Moon, by Betty Barss

The Rogue Gallery will display in the Main Gallery 80 transparent watercolor paintings selected from the fall 2014 convention of the Watercolor Society of Oregon. The Watercolor Society of Oregon was established in 1966 with the mission “to further the interest of transparent watercolor painting and to encourage a wider experience, enjoyment, and education to the painter and the viewing public.” This exhibit reflects the artistic diversity of the society’s talented members.

Southern Oregon artists represented in the exhibit include Linda Boutacoff, Betty Barrs, Lane Hall, Linda Hagen, Marilyn Hurst, Cecilia Pestlin, Peggy Stermer Cox, and Eve Withrow. “The expertise of the artists using the medium of transparent watercolor is impressive. The range of style and expression is inspiring,” says Rogue Gallery Executive Director Kim Hearon.



Rio Del Oro, by Linda Boutacoff

Rio Del Oro, by Linda Boutacoff

The Watercolor Society of Oregon (WSO) is a statewide organization and consists of almost 1000 members. WSO’s primary goals are giving members the chance to display their work, and provide education opportunities. The WSO features semi-annual shows, which are juried by nationally recognized artists. Over 320 works were submitted for this exhibit, 80 paintings were chosen. Of these, 20 works have been selected by to travel throughout the state for six months. The Watercolor Society’s fall convention is being held in downtown Medford from October 3 through October 5th. Many of the activities are hosted at the Inn at the Commons and the Rogue Gallery & Art Center.

The Rogue Gallery & Art Center is a non-profit community art center, founded in 1960 to promote and support the arts in the Rogue Valley. The center exhibits a wide range of artistic styles and mediums from local and national artists. Programming includes art educational opportunities for children and adults. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call (541)772-8118 for more info or visit

8th Annual Empty Bowls Event Coming October 13

Empty Bowls Flyer_2014

The 8th Empty Bowls event

in Grants Pass, Oregon will again be held at Parkway Christian Center located at 229 NE Beacon Drive in Grants Pass on Monday, October 13th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Guests choose a handcrafted bowl and are then served a simple meal of soup and bread. The handmade bowl is yours to keep as a reminder of hunger in our community.

Options is collaborating with the Josephine County Food Bank and the Gospel Rescue Mission to host the annual Empty Bowls event. The three agencies see a great need to provide food and access to food for an increasing number of people in our community, especially children and their families.

Josephine County is one of the five most food insecure counties in all of Oregon. With the still high unemployment rate and poverty level, the need for access to food is greater than ever. “Many people believe that hunger only affects a small sector in our community and don’t realize many people who struggle with hunger every day are, in fact, their neighbors,” says Ellen Johnson, Development Director at Options for Southern Oregon.

Parkway Christian Center Pastor, Dennis Webber, says that the Empty Bowls Project is core to the values we all live by that bring joy and meaning to life. “People doing things together is better than doing it alone and it is an opportunity for us to partner with the greater community who have life challenges,” says Webber.

“We so appreciate our local restaurants who donate gourmet soups and homemade bread for this special night,” says Johnson. “This is a night to honor those in need in our community. If you can’t attend, please consider making a donation or purchase a ticket so that a client might attend.” Casa Amiga, The Laughing Clam, Rosso’s Trattoria, The Bohemian, DASSH Bakery, and MaMosa’s are a few of the soup contributors to Empty Bowls.

Options’ residential clients and local artists join every year to make bowls for this event. “I enjoy watching people choose the bowl that “speaks to them”. It’s a powerful and emotional event,” says Johnson. “With our community’s generous support we do make a difference in people’s lives.”

Options is Josephine County’s Mental Health Program. The nonprofit agency annually serves approximately 5,000 children, adults and families in our community. The Josephine County Food Bank is currently providing food access to about 12,000 individuals each month.

Karla McCafferty, Executive Director of Options says, “All three of our agencies have long been community partners and have been working together to address individual, family and community issues such as poverty and hunger. Empty Bowls is truly an example of our community coming together to address a very real and desperate need.”

This year’s event sponsors are AmericanWest Bank, J. D. Fulwiler Insurance Company, and Bank of the Cascades. Please join us at the annual Empty Bowls event and help alleviate hunger in Josephine County. Our local event is an opportunity to discuss food and hunger in our community. Learn more about how to keep our community healthy.

“Our agencies provide a vital source of hope and support for so many of the vulnerable people in our community,” says McCafferty.

Ashland Gallery Association Featured Gallery Exhibits - October 2014

Ashland Gallery Association aga logoCome out for the AGA First Friday Art Walk, October 3 from 5–8 pm! Stroll the galleries in downtown Ashland and the Historic Railroad District. Enjoy this free community event filled with spectacular artwork, live music, artist demonstrations, refreshments and conversation with other art enthusiasts! Click here to download the AGA Artwalk Map for October 2014.

Most exhibits run through the end of October.

Ashland Gallery Association Spotlight Exhibits

Handmade scarf by Stepanie Moss

Handmade scarf by Stepanie Moss

October 2014

Ashland Art Works

In October, Ashland Artworks features John Weston’s finely crafted hardwood gifts, and new work from talented wire sculptor, George Popa.
In addition, we will introduce hand woven luxury scarves and shawls by our newest member, Stefanie Moss.

Stefanie uses a rigid heddle loom to create these beautiful works. Inspired by her own skin sensitivity, she uses natural fiber, high quality yarns – primarily alpaca, merino and silk – that drape beautifully, and feel soft to the skin.

Special Event!
Illahe Studios and Gallery

“Good Luck Shrine” by Wilma Wyss

“Good Luck Shrine” by Wilma Wyss

Contemporary Mosaic Art Invitational

The first ever Contemporary Mosaic Art summit is being held in Ashland October 3-6, 2014.  The Summit will include workshops suitable for the beginner to the advanced artist taught by internationally recognized mosaic artists: Kelley Knickerbocker, Laurel Skye, Mireille Swinnen and  Joanne Chase. Nearly 30 national and international artists will be featured in the Invitational Mosaic Exhibition hosted at Illahe Studios and Gallery for the month of October with an Artists’ Reception held on the First Friday Artwalk, Oct. 3rd, 5-8 p.m.   Enjoy the crisp autumn evening with other art lovers, meet the artists and enjoy the music of Laura Christine Anderson.

An exhibition of original mosaics for sale by the mosaic summit participants will be held at the beautiful Belle Fiore winery on the 4th and 5th, 11:30-7 pm. During the Summit volunteers will be working on a collaborative mosaic that will be donated to the Ashland Emergency Food Bank.

The public is invited to participate in the summit. For registration information and details visit


Schneider Museum of Art

Modou Dieng & Devon A. VanHouten-Maldonado, TRANQUILLO, 2014, mixed media

Modou Dieng & Devon A. VanHouten-Maldonado, TRANQUILLO, 2014, mixed media

Selections from PORTLAND2014: A Biennial of Contemporary Art

The Schneider Museum of Art (SMA) is celebrating its participation in Southern Oregon University’s new Oregon Center for the Arts by presenting a year of Oregon artists.  As part of this celebration, the Museum is excited to show Selections from PORTLAND2014: A Biennial of Contemporary Art, a major exhibition that surveys the work of Oregon visual artists who are defining and advancing the contemporary arts landscape.  The exhibition will be showing from Friday, October 3 through Saturday, December 6, 2014 with an opening reception on Thursday, October 2 from 5:00 TO 7:00 PM.

PORTLAND2014: A Biennial of Contemporary Art was conceived of and produced by Disjecta Contemporary Art Center in Portland, Oregon and curated by Amanda Hunt.  Founded in 2000, Disjecta Contemporary Art Center builds ambitious programs that promote artists and engage communities. (To learn more, visit ) SMA Director Erika Leppmann worked with curator, Amanda Hunt, and Disjecta Director, Bryan Suereth, to organize the Biennial for the fall exhibition at the Schneider Museum of Art.

Curator Hunt visited nearly 50 studios and reviewed over 300 entries before selecting fifteen Oregon artists and their collaborators to participate in PORTLAND2014.  These artists include up-and-coming as well as established professionals who work in a variety of media.  The participating artists are primarily based in Portland, but others work in Salem, Eugene, and Dayton.  For Hunt, several themes emerged as she reviewed the artists’ work: “dialogue and collaboration, the presence of the hand, of not outsourcing production; a connection to the landscape; and overarching sense of intergenerational dialogue.”

Sarah Burns - painting in her studio

Sarah Burns – painting in her studio

Special Event!
Ashland Open Studio Tour

October 11 & 12, 2014 from 11:00 AM – 5 PM

Ever wonder how artists find their creative muse? Ashland Open Studio Tour is a new event sponsored by the Ashland Gallery Association to visit the very places where art happens.  Artist’s studios are always one of kind.  Each artist studio has its own peculiarities in set up and working methods depending on medium and the artist’s needs. Each creative person needs a room of their own to think, work, organize, and dream.  While these places where art is made are as individual as the artist, what they all have in common is the energy of creation. This is the forum where an artist is allowed to freely experiment, develop ideas, and fail or succeed.

On the second weekend of October, the Open Studio Tour will delight your eye and emotions; bring the creative spirit into your day; and open up a hidden part of Ashland and its surrounding areas, Talent and Phoenix.  AOST features art and artists with the colors of fall, and the charms of a small town set in a rural landscape.  After a day of touring, stop by some of Ashland’s nearby wineries, dine in one of the many excellent restaurants, and experience live performances at any of the high quality local theater venues.
For more information about the Open Studio Tour see the website or email [email protected]

Ashland Open Studio Tour Artist Demonstrations
Saturday October 11th

Time        Name                Demo Description
Noon:    Studio AB      (Drawing and digital painting)
1:00 PM: Linda Evans     (Painting pastels)
2:00 PM: Claudia Law     (Thread Sketching)
3:00 PM: Laura Lawrence     (Machine Knitting)
4:00 PM: Harriet Greene     (Stone carving)

Sunday October 12th

Time        Name                Demo Description
Noon:      Cheryl Kempner     (Metal cutting)
1:00 PM: JoAnn Manzone     (Nuno felting)
2:00 PM: Pamela Haunschild    (Encaustic Painting)
3:00 PM: Denise Kester    (Printmaking)
4:00 PM: Martin Goldman     (Showing a short film)

V.E. Long Retrospective Exhibit and Workshop at CCC Art Center

The Clatsop Community College Art Center Gallery will open its exhibition season with a show entitled Cakes, Nudes, and Bowling Balls, the first retrospective exhibition by Bay Area artist V.E. Long. The show will feature the artist’s figurative works, monotypes, sculptures, collages, and assemblages created over a span of 27 years, from 1987 through the current year.


Bliss-Detail, by V.E. Long

Bliss-Detail, by V.E. Long

The exhibition opens with a reception on Thursday, October 2 beginning at 6:00 p.m. and continues through November 6. The gallery reception and exhibit are free and open to the public. The CCC Art Center Gallery, 1799 Lexington Avenue, Astoria, is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and on weekends and holidays by appointment.

In conjunction with her exhibit, V.E. Long will conduct a workshop entitled “Pushing the Figure to Abstraction” on Friday, October 3 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  During this workshop, participants will gain greater insight into the artist’s personal process and practice this approach in a productive, hands-on session. “Having taught at Napa Valley College, I love to teach workshops,” Long confesses.  Describing her intentions for the workshop, she says, “My goal is always the success of workshop participants, and to personalize any feedback to participant’s individual needs.  One of the hardest jobs of an artist is that of being an editor, and I would like to share how an artist might approach that challenge.  My teaching sessions are serious, yet full of humor; we work hard and have a lot to show for a few hours of work.  Participants leave with work well underway and heads full of information that they can actually use.”

The workshop will be held in the Drawing/Painting Studio of the CCC Art Center, and is free to CCC students enrolled in fall term credit classes and open to the general public for a $20 fee.  Space is limited and pre-registration is required. For a materials list and to register, contact Kristin Shauck, 503-338-2472 or [email protected].

Selected to exhibit in the 2014 Au Naturel competition by the highly respected Portland gallery owner Charles Froelick, Long was also chosen by the art department faculty to receive the coveted prize of a solo exhibition at the CCC Art Center Gallery. V.E. Long’s work has been collected by corporations including AT&T, Chubb Corporation, IBM, Twentieth Century Fox, and the Hewlett Foundation. Private collectors of her work include Manuel Neri, Robert Redford, and Lawrence Halprin, designer of the F.D.R. Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Born in Washington, D.C., Long earned a B.A. from University of California at Santa Barbara and an M.F.A. from California State University, Long Beach where she studied with Paul Wonner, one of the original Bay Area Figurative artists. She has also studied with Llyn Foulkes and Howard Warshaw.  She is regarded as a third generation Bay Area figurative artist influenced by the work of Nathan Olivera, David Park, Paul Wonner, Richard Diebenkorn, and Manuel Neri.  Her prevailing use of the strong gestural marks of Abstract Expressionism is reminiscent of Willem de Kooning, while influences for her assemblage works and sculpture range from Ed Keinholz to Louise Nevelson to Joseph Cornell.


Although the show represents a wide variety of work in both two dimensional and three dimensional formats, the common thread interconnecting all the pieces lies in the process of creation; the original image that initially inspired each work of art has been removed from its original context. With the two dimensional figurative work, the artist initially works from a life model in the beginning stages.  In the following stages after the model leaves, the artist begins to deconstruct the images, pushing and abstracting them into something quite removed from the original vision.  With the three dimensional assemblage works, the artist scavenges bits and pieces of items that once had a specific function, such as game tokens and cake decorations, and then she transforms each item into a completely different incarnation imbedded into a work of art. Each item then serves as a visual element in a new visual context, and in the process, each item becomes infused with a deeper, more complex meaning.


Both the figurative works and assemblages express what it is to be human in various ways.  They depict circumstances and tragedies, strengths and frailties, hope and survival. “The figure, and its connotations, are a never ending source of inspiration for me,” the artist states.  She also explains that “had I been born more recently, I’m sure I would have been labeled as ADHD.  As it was, my parents just received notes that I was a ‘distracted child’ and a ‘daydreamer,’ and I guess I was, because everything interested me and still does.  My sculptural work uses ordinary items as icons, many of which I find in the street or at the landfill.  My figurative work is ‘all over the place’—once the model leaves, I can make her into something else.  So I’m really thankful that I was, and still am, a distracted child.”


Long creates her work in her Napa Valley studio space that she describes as a “bi-level on a slope in an old chicken feed granary on the ranch where we live…the lower portion is where I paint,  and I also print on a huge etching press. The upper portion is where I produce the wood constructions and assemblages. It’s a wonderful life and I am so grateful to get to live here.”

Clatsop Community College acknowledges special support for this exhibit and workshop from The Cannery Pier Hotel and Spa.

Dia de los Muertos & My Art Activism

Sour Note in the Forest of the 6th Extinction, monotype by Catie Faryl

Sour Note in the Forest of the 6th Extinction, monotype by Catie Faryl

by Catie Faryl

Autumn is poignant and cooling (we hope!).  All Saints Day, All Souls Day, All Hallow’s Eve allow us to honor and reflect upon those who’ve gone before us.  The Mexican way of celebrating and honoring ancestors is a reassurance that those we love are always with us. The connections of the heart do not die in this hopeful, live-affirming culture.

Art Altars give me a chance to get personal and express my vivid interior life.  In the tradition of art activism, I’ve utilized the high energy this time of year grants me to honor not only ancestors but all sentient beings who have left or are leaving this planet.  In 2009 my Shrine to Lost Pollinators revered the bees, bats, birds and other creatures who help us by pollinating our food and flowering plants.

In 2014 I must go deeper into a political statement that demands action beyond sentiment and nostalgia. With little time left for my art due to my activism on banning and labeling genetically engineered foods and seeds, climate change and social, economic and environmental justice, I hope to finish my altar installation for the October show at Art Presence in Jacksonville.  My altar is titled “The Calliope of Killing” because it provides a visual accounting of the man-made species die-off  known as the 6th Extinction.

Activist art is held at arms length by government and corporations, but loved by the people.  Activist art is a “hot potato” for the “powers that be” because it raises questions and issues they are unwilling or unable to answer.  It is one of very few effective channels to communicate with the public and to empower the people to express their own discontent and hope for improvement in leadership, lifestyle, the economy and Earth stewardship.  I have taken pleasure in using my “Artist’s License” to say and show what others might repress or deny. Art, humor and theatre are vehicles for defusing our confusion and frustration and for reducing the grandiosity of power by lampooning the arrogance and misguided decisions of governance and elite corps(es)!  Art can be a wake-up call to rally and support the will of the people.

The connections of my heart are to the natural world as well as to loved ones.  As conditions on Earth become more serious, and as the killing continues to escalate all over the planet, I am compelled to sideline the charity of humor for the sharper tools of the pen and the brush.  Ignorance, greed, and power – can they be felled with a colorful sword of information and truth?  Can we gather together to correct the trajectory made by those who would exploit all resources in favor of personal profit?  This time of year I search my mind and soul to find what spirit is within to help change the course of what humans are doing to the planet.

Catie Faryl
September 10, 2014