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The Poet Wonders

Nationally, it has been poetry month, but personally, it has been gardening month (with plenty of gravel schlepping!). In the realm of poetry, my collection Hope of Stones was nominated as a finalist for the Oregon Book Awards. I wait to hear the results. In the realm of gardening, I planted seeds. I wait to see the results. 

 

I’ve always honored the timeless metaphor of a garden, but it’s one thing to write about it. It’s another to prepare the soil and plant the physical seeds. 

 

Since I’ve spent far more time with a shovel than a pen this month, I thought I’d pull out a poem from Hope of Stones. Unlike the opening line, it is still the “month of April & maybes.” So much waiting. And even more than the results of the book awards, I am excited to see what this coming harvest season will bring. 

 

The Poet Wonders

Oregon, October

 

The more I wonder, the more I love.—Alice Walker

 

It is no longer the month of April & maybes. 

It’s October & root vegetables—the soil-

pulled concretions of harvest. What we seeded 

in spring has grown up & down & waits 

for us to lift it from the skin of earth. 

 

How silent prayer was revelation & heresy.

 

The clouds roll in. The leaves redden. 

The cat’s coat thickens. We gather 

the tangible close & prepare for cold. 

 

How physics is the science of prayer.

 

One friend is dying. Another is trying to love 

someone who doesn’t love her back. 

 

I visit the first friend, & we sit on his deck 

watching tractors in the adjacent forest dig 

foundations for new houses he will never see. 

 

I visit the other friend & notice the old 

potatoes she keeps on a shelf. They’ve 

shriveled a bit but have new eyes—new shoots 

already looking for somewhere else to grow.  

 

How a perennial can inspire prayer.

 

The Baumann Effect Live Demo

Central Art Supply logo

541.773.1444   101 N. Central Ave., Medford, Oregon 97501   centralartsupply.com
MON-FRI: 10-6 | SAT: 10-5


Thursday May 6, 2021 / 1:00pm – 3:00pm

Central Art is proud to announce a FREE [in-person] painting event:
“The Baumann Effect” presented by Stefan Baumann
Live in-person demo Thursday, May 6 2021 From 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at Central Art
“Fundamentals – What Every Artist Should Know”


“The Baumann Effect”  is new series of classes/workshops based on Stefan Baumann’s successful YouTube channel and his PBS Painting Show “The Grand View”. This FREE introduction lecture and demonstration will be presented Thursday, May 6 from 2:00 to 4:00pm in-person at Central Art and is open to the public.

During the introduction, Baumann will introduce his 12 Keys to Painting demonstrating many proven keys that will improve your painting instantly, and set your painting on the path to success.

These lively talks will be part of an overall series that dives into “The Baumann Effect” and answers questions that many instructors fail to address. There is so much more to painting than color, value, and drawing. In this series, Baumann will explore the secrets to painting with the audience.

Through the study, exploration and evaluation of mastering art in Baumann’s lectures, along with your participation, you will discover not only your style but your core – the essence of why you paint. Students are encouraged to bring a painting for critique and a list of questions that they wish to have answered.

*Registration required. To sign up, visit centralartsupply.com


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AGA Art Classes and Opportunities

Ashland Galleries
April Visual Arts News
April = Art Opportunities

We’re excited to share a handful of art opportunities that are being offered this month to foster your inner creativity. 
Ashland Gallery Association
AGA Summer Art Show!
Saturday, June 19, 2021 
12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. 

  Open to members, and in lieu of the traditional Open Studio Tour, the AGA is coordinating a Summer Art Show at Ashland Art Works that will allow members to showcase their artwork outdoors! 

For those who are interested in participating, please register here no later than April 20, 2021.

Send promotional images of artwork to [email protected] and sign and send the attached Liability Release Form along with the $20.00 participation fee to: 

Ashland Gallery Association
PO Box 241
Ashland, OR 97520

Image Credit: 
Suzanne Etienne, Ashland Art Works, Acrylic
ART BEYOND
Saturday in the Park: Lithia Park Plein Air Painting Event 

  Saturday, June 19, 2021 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Open to all, artists can come and go throughout the day. The general public will be encouraged to engage with the artists between 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. where artists can talk about their work and process. Artists will be invited to show one piece created at this event at ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum from June 21 – September 16, 2021. Art will be sold at and by ScienceWorks, with 50% of sales prices going to the artist and 50% to ScienceWorks.

Please register here to be a participating artist by June 1, 2021.

Image Credit: Sarah F Burns, Late Spring, Mistletoe Road, Ashland, OR, Oil on Panel
Rogue Art Gallery
Figure Painting with Ilene Ginger-Stanfield
Friday, April 16 – Sunday, April 18, 2021 
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Welcoming all skill levels and utilizing oil or pastel media, 
Ilene’s three day workshop will introduce the technique of identifying shapes within the composition to find the visual truth, cover the fundamentals of drawing, shape, value, and edges, and then address the properties of color. Color is powerful, it can inhibit or control its application in art. The workshop will give students a clear understanding of how to navigate this wonderful element of painting. Following lecture and demonstrations, students will paint from live models and photo references.

Please register here to participate by Friday, April 16, 2021.
Members: $300.00 and Non-Members: $325.00 
Materials List

Image Credit: Illene Ginger-Stanfield, Untitled, Oil  
Northwest Ceramics Studio
Ceramic In-Person Classes
April 18, 2021 and April 21, 2021 
Times Vary 

  Come have fun and get a little dirty at Northwest Ceramics! They offer ceramic classes at all different levels. It is recommended to register for classes early due to small class sizes.

As of right now, an Intermediate Pottery Workshop and Floral and Leaf Inlay class are available. For more information, please visit, https://www.northwestceramicstudio.com/book-online

Image Credit: 
Northwest Ceramics Studio
  Ashland Public Arts Commission Opportunities!
Become a Commissioner

The Ashland Public Arts Commission (PAC) is involved in building the city’s public arts collection and educating both residents and tourists about the value of public art. 

The mission of the Public Arts Commission is to enhance the cultural and aesthetic quality of life in Ashland by actively pursuing the placement of public art in public spaces and serving to preserve and develop public access to the arts. The continued vitality of the arts in the City of Ashland is a vital part of the future of the city as well as of its citizens.

If you’re interested in becoming a commissioner, please review the PAC’s website, sit in on a meeting, and fill out an application. Each of the steps are listed below. 
 
Website:
https://www.ashland.or.us/CCBIndex.asp?CCBID=212

Meetings:
Meetings are held on the third Friday of each month at 8:30 am. Access to the Zoom link and agenda will be published on the website. 

Application:
https://www.ashland.or.us/SIB/files/Commission_Committee_APP.pdf

The Personality of Process: On the Enneagram, the house we built, and marriage

The house foundations last August


Blobs, spots, specks, smudges, cracks, defects, mistakes, accidents, exceptions, and irregularities are the windows to other worlds.—Bob Miller

 

Part One: In Which I Vent About the Enneagram (Though I Love It, Too)

 

If you know a bit about the Enneagram, you know that you are likely one of nine types—and that each type has specific fears and desires and motivations. Learning about this framework helps us understand ourselves and others. 

 

However…I’ve also learned that you can come into this world as one type but can learn to adapt into another type that appears to serve you or others better. And then you can be very confused.

 

There are various schools of the Enneagram, and many of the types have different names according to which one you study. I believe I came into this world a Four—the Romantic or Individualist. But the world rewarded my ability to be a One: the Perfectionist or Reformer. I joke that I’m either a Perfecting Romantic or Romanic Perfectionist.

 

From my school years through the first months of my marriage, I lived pretty well as a Perfectionist-Reformer One. Even my creativity was highly structured; I’d embark on a series of 100 portraits, 30 days of painting-poems, et cetera, et-orderly-cetera. It didn’t help that most organized religion and education love achievers—and boy could I achieve. In grade school, I memorized whole chapters of Corinthians for our church version of the Girl Scouts, The Missionettes. (Somewhere, there exists a photo of myself wearing a turquoise polyester sash with all of my badges). I worked to be high school valedictorian. Then I worked even harder to be undergraduate summa cum laude. By grad school, I let myself breathe and settled for magna cum laude. And that was probably because, while I shaped my poetry thesis, I rediscovered a wild creativity longing to play free—uncaged by a rigid grid of quantification.   

 

And then, decades later, I got married. Funny thing about marriage: your True Self emerges in a way it never did before. True union eventually squeezes out anything false. And when two become one, a lot of shit has got to go. (I could make a terrible pun here about two each becoming the most annoying parts of the Enneagram’s Reformer One, but I shall not!) 

 

Suffice it to say, that whatever façade we’ve built basically gets shaken off, and whatever’s underneath probably has some black mold and maybe a rat or two, despite however many years we think we’ve done our spirit excavation. 

 

And also, I married an Eight: the Challenger. Challengers can call your bluff pretty darn well. 

 

Part Two: In Which I Vent About Building a House (Though I Love It, Too)

 

This all leads me, most indirectly, to the process of building a house—before we’d been married a year. (In fact, as I write this, we are just about to reach our nine-month anniversary). 

 

But before I get to that, I should also mention that it took me until my forties to see an obvious life pattern. During my college years, I worked as a housecleaner—for residential and professional buildings. And then I worked as an editor in some capacity for longer than most starting editors have been alive. Cleaning and editing. Basically, I trained myself to see the mess and the misspelled and to perfect them all. But such tasks, though they felt good when done, didn’t feel good in the process; they felt exhausting and never-ending. I wouldn’t so much celebrate as check off the completion of each round of “perfecting,” even as I braced myself for the next round of trash and typos. Versus celebrating the process—mud ‘n’ all. 

 

And let’s just say that pointing out all the dirt and dialogue flaws is not a beneficial marriage skill. But the long-entrenched One in me—the Perfectionist-Reformer—was so used to doing this, that it was hard to stop. It took me a while to be grateful for the fact that my husband doesn’t really care if things are clean or if every T is crossed. “But these are my strengths!” a part of me kept shouting. 

 

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the truer part of myself kept saying she loved going off on muddy river adventures and not needing to analyze the etymology of the kayak term “boof.” 

 

One book on the Enneagram is called The Road Back to You. The One-Me never understood that title. The Four-Me is jumping up and down for childlike joy, saying, “Yes! We’re back!”

 

Marriage has invited me to return to my creative being: my True Self, the Self who loves paint splatters and rough-edged canvas and impromptu word play for pure fun; the Four who knows that all of life is poetry, not just words on a page—or a specific page count. That Self has risen up alongside our house.

 

Yes, finally, I get to the house. It has become my metaphor for building a more authentic self and marriage. 

 

Last summer, I took a photo of the foundations—surrounded by heaps of displaced earth. Where wild grass had grown in beautiful abandon, the hillside looked like a jagged scar. But we wanted to build something, and so we had to tear into what was there. We had to make a mess.

 

Now, a brick home stands on that site, finished, after months of trucks and lumber. But nothing is ever finished, is it? The wake of construction rubble and ruts surrounding the house remind me how ongoing building really is.

 

Our first day in the house

So that Miller quote I opened with; I am still struggling to love the messy process. But now that I’ve been building a life with someone and building a house with someone—I am beginning to get it. 

 

I am also beginning to embrace both the Reformer and the Romantic in myself—and I consciously choose those two labels for the One and the Four. The drive for excellence in the former helped ground the often formless creative sensitivities of the latter. Maybe I’ll call myself a Romantic Reformer—head in the clouds but feet on the ground. Imperfectly trying to bring Heaven to Earth.

 

The two types in me have finally become one.

 

Union starts in our very own hearts. 

 

Part Three: In Which I Don’t Vent About Marriage, But Instead Write A Poem About It

 

O this strange bliss—

brimming with

mess & misspellings 

mud & wonder—

I embrace all 

your stains & stars.

 

Two become 

one house 

uniting 

divided hearts

 

We build

a mystery.


Right after the land became ours last spring


From Prompt to Print Winter 2021 ~ A Celebration of Our Creative Process!

This collective publication is a celebration of the creative process! This anthology of poetry, fiction, and memoir came from a six-week writing group at Writers’ Room, a creative writing studio in Jacksonville, Oregon. We began by free writing to a series of prompts. Over the next weeks we developed our writing, provided feedback to one […]

Sacred Offerings from Roxanne Evans Stout

third   Hello you beautiful artists and friends! I hope this newsletter finds you well! These are not easy times, but I am finding ways to create joy, and I hope you are too. I am thrilled to tell you about a special project I have been preparing for quite some time. It is finally ready to share with you! 1 poster
My next online class for you is… Sacred Offerings! Create beautiful backgrounds for stenciled “Offerings.”

How will you use them? In books, as wall hangings, as gifts or stand-alone works of art… Join me March 11 at 1 pm PST on Facebook Live! The class will last 1.5-2 hours.

After you register, you will receive an invite to a closed Facebook group, where the class will be. You will be able to re-watch the class and share with the group forever after. So even if you can’t make the live recording, it will always be available to you in our Facebook group! And it is only $30! Register here now! Register now to join Sacred Offerings!

Nurture your creativity with Sacred Offerings. Nourish your artistic spirit with an afternoon making art together… In Sacred Offerings!

If you want to explore printmaking on a Gelli plate, this will be a wonderful class for you!

We will add texture and color to papers and delve into new and meaningful ways to use my stencil designs!

We are going to nurture our creativity together, and create all kinds of magic!

Register now to join us in Sacred Offerings!

Explore Gelli plates and stencils in new and meaningful ways with us in Sacred Offerings!
IMG 5318 2
May you have a magical, beautiful day! Thank you so much to each of you who has already signed up for Sacred Offerings!  

©2021 River Garden Studio | P.O. Box 645 Keno OR 97627

The Gasket of Grace

To celebrate this month that celebrates relationships, I decided to write about gaskets. 

I don’t think I really knew what a gasket was until we had three needing to be replaced. First to go was my husband’s kayak drysuit neck gasket (which I really didn’t know about). Second was our woodstove door gasket (which I learned how to replace). And third was my little stove-top coffee maker gasket (which apparently gives up if I accidentally leave the contraption on the burner too long).

 

Once things happen in threes, I start to pay attention. And I start to research meaning. Turns out, the official definition of a gasket is a seal that fills the space between two or more mating surfaces.

 

Well, if that isn’t a relationship metaphor! 

 

A favorite of the hundred or so books I’ve read on marriage (I exaggerate that number, but only slightly) is Rob Bell’s Zimzum of Love. In it, he explores the ancient Hebrew word zimzum, which essentially means “the space between.” I’m kind of obsessed with this idea. In fact, my first poetry collection many years ago was a little chapbook titled, The Space Between. I look for connections everywhere—for what brings things and people together and what keeps them together. 

 

The best part of the gasket definition? It allows for less-than-perfect mating surfaces between two, irregular parts. Which could be said of the space between two, irregular people.

 

“So,” I asked myself, “What is the gasket of marriage?”

 

First, I should explain that my husband and I are very different. We are learning to laugh about this. 

 

He’s Mr. Spontaneity. On a Friday after a long work week, he can grab a jar of peanut butter and head out camping on a whim. I am Mrs. Planner. If we are going camping, I like to A) know about it at least a day in advance and B) pack a cooler brimming with pesto, sliced aged cheddar, pre-chopped onions soaking in olive oil for morning eggs, driving snacks of sea-salt dark chocolate, at least one good bottle of wine, etc. etc. 

 

He’s Mr. DIY. Whether changing the car oil, installing a new dishwasher, or cutting his hair, he’s a do-it-yourself kinda guy. I’m Mrs. Outsource-My-Weaknesses. I like to take the car in for its checkup to my trusty mechanic, hire a handyman to install anything that comes with a lengthy instruction manual and connects to electricity or water, and when I did briefly cut my own hair for a season, it just confirmed that I should leave some things to the professionals.

 

He’s Mr. Down-to-Earth and says it like it is. I’m Mrs. Pie-in-the-Sky and tend to quote literature aloud. When we watched Starsky & Hutch one night, I recognized the start of a favorite Shakespeare line, quoted by Snoop Dog, “To err is human…” and I spoke in time with the rest of it: “…to forgive, divine.” At dinner parties now, my husband likes to say I quote Snoop Dog, at which point, I start distinguishing between primary and secondary sources. 

 

Whether expressed by a 17th-century bard or a 21st-century bard, forgiveness is something my husband and I both agree on. It’s the gasket of grace. Especially in marriage. And especially when two different people approach life in different ways—which is bound to lead to misunderstandings.  

 

I have a hunch that you don’t need a lot of grace to love someone who’s a lot like yourself. That’s pretty easy. Learning to love difference is a gift in that it does require a lot of grace. Maybe the more difference between two people, the more grace you can have—if you also choose to give it. 

 

I looked up zimzum to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Part of HarperCollins’s definition states: “In marriage, zimzum is the dynamic energy field between two partners.” 


We are learning to celebrate the dynamics. 

 

So whether I lean toward my poetic-academic love of Big Words and call it zimzum, or whether I lean toward the practical gasket, I know that whatever seals the space between us will be made of grace. 



Love for the Win

“Heart Wins,” from the Take Heart series

Once upon a time, I spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s reviewing the previous year, evaluating it, and forecasting/goalcasting the year ahead. You might say I was an overachiever with  resolutions.

Some years, I was bullet-point specific. Like when I determined to go on an archaeological dig, learn salsa dancing, and take up archery: check, check, check. (I discovered that I hated the heat and dirt of the dig, I wasn’t a fan of prescribed dance steps, but I was a decent aim.)

 

Other years, I was more open-ended, listing four to five feelings I wanted to cultivate. Once, I painted a four-point compass with harmony at its center and joy, peace, prosperity, and grace as its north, south, east, and west.

 

At the end of December 2019, while housesitting at a lovely home, high on a hill—as I had for many years—I sat in front of the fire and started my review and projection. 

 

Or I tried to. 

 

I even had a fancy calendar that led you through all the steps with lots of questions to answer and blanks to fill in. (I should note that I am very good about answering all the questions and filling in all the blanks.) And yet, as I flipped through the pages I usually looked forward to filling, I found myself completely uninspired by all the specificity. 


For once, I didn’t want to grip the steering wheel of my life so hard and beeline for the next goal. And believe me: I can beeline! From putting myself through undergraduate and graduate school on scholarships to getting a grant to write poetry in Germany for a year to all manner of less scholastic but equally daunting goals since: I. Get. It. Done. 

 

But those last days before 2020, I didn’t want to get it all done. Because I had a hunch that there were things waiting to happen if I were willing to let go of my limited ideas of what I could achieve and maintain in my own strength. And so, to my surprise, I found myself writing the word “Love” in big, loose cursive across all those usually inviting blanks I was “supposed” to fill in.

 

Fun facts: Just over a month into 2020, I began dating an old friend. Then he proposed. Then we got married. And we have spent the last half year learning the intricacies of love—and I could not have forecast any of them!

 

So, for 2021, I didn’t buy the fancy, fill-in-the-blank calendar. In fact, I’m using one of those free company calendars. I’m keeping it simple. And I’m metaphorically writing love across every month. 

 

And on this Day of Epiphany—a feast day celebrating the manifestation of the One who is Love—I invite the continual manifestation of Love to us all…in all its unpredictable forms, across all the days of this year.  

GPMA News January 2021


January 2021 eNews

Happy New Year. We hope to connect with all of you soon. Keep checking the museum website for any updates regarding exhibits, events, and more.
Enjoy! Hyla Executive Director
Click here to visit our website
Current Exhibition The membership exhibit will remain in the museum through January 22. Currently the museum is closed – but you can view each entry in the exhibit by watching the video (see below). GPMA 2020 Membership Exhibit Video What’s Next? The Exhibition Department has been very busy keeping up with the many changes in schedules. Following is a preview of a preliminary list of exhibits for 2021. This list is totally subject to change due to circumstances that the museum cannot control. Vince Carl Kristen O’Neill Rogue Valley Biennial Ilene Gienger-Stanfield 2021 Membership Exhibit Sakaya Ganz Reclaimed Creations

Save These Dates
Black, White, & the Blues will be virtual this year.
MARCH 25 – stay tuned for more information! We are almost positive that Art in the Garden will be live because it is an outdoor activity and it is not until June 12 & 13. Virtual Classes SIGN UP HERE Happenings If you would like to have a private shopping experience – we are happy to open the gallery just for you. We are offering private shopping for customers limiting going out in public. They may make an appointment by calling, 541 476 3220.

Help keep the museum free for all! The museum does not receive government funding (other than grants from the Josephine County Cultural Coalition and the Oregon Cultural Trust via JCCC). So keeping the doors open depends on grants, donations, memberships, sponsorships, and rent from the street level businesses (Shoefly and Gallery One). You can do one time donations and you can also do monthly donations. It’s easy – and we appreciate you very much! On additional side benefit – the foundations who offer grants are very pleased to see community involvement. Your donations show your support!
You can DONATE by clicking here

Monthly donations are so amazing. They add up quickly. Just $10 a month means a donation to the museum of $120 for the year. That’s fabulous. Please consider this option. The payments safely charged to your credit card.
Be a “Monthly Sustainer” and click here!

You can also call us at 541-479-3290 or send mail to us at Grants Pass Museum of Art, P.O. Box 966, Grants Pass, OR 97528

Do you shop on Amazon? This quarter, we received $24.29. Every little bit helps a lot. Thank you! Did you know that if you go to a special link called Amazon Smile you can choose a nonprofit to benefit from your purchase. Each nonprofit has a unique link. Here’s the portal you can use for the museum. Every little bit helps! CLICK HERE or click the picture to shop and benefit the museum.The best part is that it doesn’t cost you any extra!



THANK YOU! If you get this far….here’s a wonderful hand painted 2021 calendar to enjoy.

Mannerly, Bannerly

This little poem is my wish & my wonder for the New Year:  


Mannerly, Bannerly

 

When all manner of bad 

lands in our laps, 

and the mean things 

land in our news feed,

what if, 

instead of responding 

in kind,

we respond in kindness?

What if 

we invite the other to dinner,

polish our best manners,

and serve goodness?

What if

we lift a banner of love,

lifting each other up,

until there is no other?  



*The illustration above is from Blessings: A Children’s Book for Grown-ups, cowritten with my dear mom, Jan Elkins