Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Naimeh Tahna Woodard

Queen of  Parties and Art Supporter par Excellence
By Patricia Frischer www.artproca.com

I think it is time to pay homage to Naimeh Tanha Woodard who has whole heartily supported local arts since I was first asked to train her in 2006. She was a
health care executive who spend many hours in hospitals as part of her job so she had a very good idea of how patients and their families as well as health care providers​ ​could benefit from the arts. She did not want to become an art therapist, but instead wanted to make sure that the healing powers of art was available to all seekers. She had a website constructed and presented art that was created specifically to help those with health challenges.  

She was able to start a healing arts program at Scripps and she became a board member of Synergy Arts Foundation which aids artists in need. Several years ago she became a Commissioner for the Arts in Encinitas about the same time that she married the love of her life Jonathan Woodard, businessman and talented musician. They live in a charming home with their dog and chickens, a recording studio for Jonathan and a new art studio for Naimeh. Naimeh's daughter is in training to be a doctor.

Naimeh is a terrific party giver and has become known for their annual carrot cakes competitions that have morphed into salsa competitions, and celebrations of all types. The last was for Jonathan's 60th birthday and was complete with a dance performance by Ballet Folklorica de San Dieguito and delicious Mexican cuisine. This group
​was formed and is supported by the Encinitas Friends of the Arts and started right after the first celebration of the Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Death ​
which Naimeh helped bring to Encinitas.

A large part of her duties now as commission is to direct the Encinitas Friends of the Arts organization. This fledgling group has been tasked with gathering together volunteers and supporters and funds mainly to elevate cultural arts in Encinitas, to support the artists and arts organizations in Encinitas while raising funds for a city owned art center. . With Naimeh's extensive world knowledge, putting on a series of events exploring cultures from across the nations is a great fit. The first was Passport to Persia, followed by Passport to Cuba and now at the end of August, we are getting to enjoy  Passport to India. Her skill lies in putting together a great team, offering a large variety of enjoyable experiences and being sensitive to the customs of each area. Naimeh Tanha Woodard is a gift to our arts community. Go to her events and will discover new joys.

The third passport event in Encintias is Passport to India: Tradition to Transition produced by Encinitas Friends of the Arts on Fri. Aug 28 from 6 to 10 pm at Encinitas Community Center (1140 Oakcrest Park Drive, Encinitas, 92024) Tickets $20 to $50 More info: encinitasartsmail@gmail.com. The Passport to Persia and the Passport to Cuba would both exciting events and so don’t miss this one featuring Featuring
Singer: Rahis Khan,
DJ/Drummer: Vikas Srivastava,
Dancers: Kirti Srivastava ,UCSD Zor, Payal,
Visual Artists: Bhavna Mehta, Sushila Srivastava and Preet Srivastava


Isaias Crow Portrait of Naimeh Tahna

Isaias Crow Portrait of

In Praise of Saying Thank You

by Patricia Frischer www.artproca.com

I have been listening to the radio in the car this week. I usually end up with a take away. No, the universe is not speaking to me, but someone on the airwaves seems to be communicating directly to me. Sometimes I even have to keep listening to the radio even after I pull the car into the garage. (My garage only has two sides so I don’t worry about carbon monoxide.) But the downside is that I don’t have any idea who it was that said what I found inspiring so I can’t quote names or organizations.

For example, I came in on the middle of a discussion by an art marketing specialist. The interviewer asked her the one biggest mistake that artist make in promoting their work. I held my breath for the answer. Would it be over or under pricing, meaningless artist statements, or maybe getting drunk at their own opening receptions? No to all of these. IT WAS NOT SAYING THANK YOU ENOUGH.

Sounds simple, but I started thinking of all the people I say thank you to and how it is never enough: Artists involved in SDVAN projects, art gallery and museum directors, patrons who give donations, writers who report on our SDVAN efforts, masses of volunteers, our Indian software expert, community leaders who support the arts, my family and personal friends that help me through moods swings, stress, ranting, and who feed and walk me and all those people on the radio and their words of wisdom.

So I researched how to say thank you. Be sincere, be grateful and be specific. It can be in person, over the phone, in a text, in an email and don’t forget the classic written note.  I could be saying thank you 24 hours a day, day in and day out. But can one be sincere day in and day out….I know I am grateful every moment of my life. But sincerity can be exhausting and much harder to muster if you think you should be grateful but the “gift” was more trouble than it was worth.

Deep down my mother loves to get compliment and thanks, but she always shrugs it off as insincere. She does not think she is worthy because thinking you are worthy is too prideful and to be resisted.

And who says thank you to me? Masses do but a lot of what I do is never acknowledged. The thanks is seeing a worthy project happen and the fun I have in participating. Do we need to start saying thank you to those who thank us? Do others think that saying thank you, is a thankless task?

Next on the radio was news of the drop by 1000 points of the stock market. Echoes of 1929, but the reassuring words came fast. THE STOCK MARKET IS NOT THE ECONOMY. The Economy is fine. I am grateful for this viewpoint. Who do I send a thank you note to for the good night’s sleep I can have tonight? 

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Farm Creative Market and Art School Art Mural at ArtWalk NTC

by Patricia Frischer

SDVAN is sponsoring FARM Creative Market and Art School Art Mural held at the 10th Annual ArtWalk NTC from August 15 – 16, 10 AM to 6 PM located at Ingram Plaza at NTC at Liberty Station. More info: Paula

Every year San Diego Visual Arts Network sponsors a participation booth at Art Walk and this year we were delighted to give this opportunity to a new art school that will be opening in the fall at the NTC. They will have a large space at 2590 Truxton Road #106)  at Liberty Station.  They will be offering an unusal mix of digital and tradition classes but  there will also be parties, demos, movies and special guest and showcases. Check out their website and watch for more information. 

At their special booth this year, located right at the very front of the  artwalk, they were using an unusual substrate of rigid but light weight board and there were lots of free sample. Guests were invited to try their hand and I understand, you did not have to create "within the lines." The board was supplied by Impact Visual Arts, which is a local company. This looks like a marvelous material for artists.

 It is always fun to see friends at the Art Walk and the folks I talked to said they were having a very good year. Jeff Yoemans, Vicki Leon, and Duke Windsor were all displaying stunning work.  My companion for the day loved John Hung Ha's cats and bought a lovely little painting for less money that a good meal. 

Kaarin Vaughn and her new John Hung Ha

James and Brennan Hubbell “Together” – Sparks Gallery

by Melinda Resende
August 1 to September 22, 2015
Sparks Gallery530 6th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
(Between Island and Market)
More info:
Sonya Sparks
Sparks Gallery installation

When I heard about James Hubbell and his son, Brennan Hubbell, making an appearance at one of my favorite galleries, I was overjoyed! I could not wait for the evening at Sparks Gallery to meet both artists.  It is so rare to find one of the most established living artist in attendance for a reception.  To have two artists (father and son) is even more spectacular!

I have had a fascination with James Hubbell’s architecture and works of art since my college years in the Art Department at San Diego State. His works of art range from sculpted concrete to use of iron or metal, to beautiful stained glass, incredible wood carvings, vibrant mosaic, mesmerizing patterned brickwork and stone. 

James Hubbell is known for creating art and architecture from natural materials that provide not only shelter but inspiration and for those who want to live in peace with nature. Brennan also focuses on creating his art based on nature.

As I walked in through the entry way of the beautiful historic building that was recently newly restored with tender loving care, I said my greetings to the gracious young lady and director of the gallery, Sonya Sparks.  I wandered towards the left of the gallery where I was to find a nice size collection of both James and Brennan Hubbell’s work.

One of the things I love about these pieces is how each one creates whimsical formations.  I enjoy the combination of nature with the subtle sense of the Renaissance period. Maybe that is because of the use of forged iron on wood, granite and stone bases.  I also find there is a feeling of organic life being formed. Each piece has some sort of story to tell to me of peace, harmony and of enchantment.  They are all different but united in ways they are difficult to describe. I simply enjoy being surrounded by these beautiful unique works of art.   

Throughout the reception, James Hubbell was approached by a variety of kind and loving fans and collectors.  Finally, Hubbell senior was free and here was my chance! What a delightful man with whom to speak.  I was on cloud 9!  After a few minutes of conversing and taking a photo (photo came out too dark- drats!), I was able to find a moment with Brennan.  He was equally delightful and very interesting. He started creating art at a very young age and actually helped build Ilan-Lael which is the art and nature center (home to his parents Anne and James Hubbell and Hubbell Studios and the Ilan-Lael Foundation). 

I have had the pleasure of seeing James Hubbell’s architecture and sculpture within our own beautiful city.  Not only can one view Hubbell’s own intricately designed home in Santa Ysabel through special tours arranged by Ilan-Lael Foundation,  one can also find an incredibly large architectural sculpture at the foot of Shelter Island in Point Loma.  In addition, his art can be seen in schools, nature centers museums, monasteries and parks around the world.

To be able to have this very rare opportunity to see Hubbell father and son work at a local gallery is not something to miss. If you have a chance, please visit Sparks Gallery in the Gaslamp Quarters of downtown.  They are open Monday through Thursday: 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Friday through Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

James Hubbell TWO IN ONE, Corian on Acrylic Base

James Hubbell DREAM LADDER, Forged Iron

James Hubbell APOLLO’S SONG, Forged Iron, Brass on Acrylic and Wood Base

Brennan Hubbell RAIN, Mixed Media

Brennan Hubbell ANABATIC WIND, Mixed Media
PS. To see work by both James and Brennan Hubbell as recipients of the SD Art Prize link to the Athenaeum exhibition for these artists. It is very satisfying to see Brennan Hubbell's work go from strength to strength as he takes on the mantle of his father's life long work.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Installing An Art Exhibition Is A Creative Act - Follow Behind The Scenes Process At San Diego Mesa College Beginning Soon!

article by Cathy Breslaw

Macro Views, Micro Wonders by Cathy Breslaw is opening reception on Thurs. Sept 10 at 4:30 to 6:30 with a lecture to follow the reception. The exhibition is on show from Sept 8 to Sept 30 at Mesa College Art Gallery ( 7250 Mesa College Dr, SD 92111) More info:. Allesandra Moctezuma  619-388-2829

When we walk into an art exhibition, we experience the 'here and now' as it looks at the moment. We enter unaware of the work and complexities of preparation. My solo exhibition "Macro Views, Micro Wonders" opens on September 10th but conversations with Gallery Director Allesandra Moctezuma and Assistant Pat Vine began over a year ago.  

The photos above gives viewers a sense of the space with nothing in it and before it was freshly painted but it will serve in stark contrast of what is to come next week when together with help from folks at the college, I will be installing over 20 works that include two room installations and one wall installation, several mixed media drawings, several transparent layered industrial mesh wall tableaus, and floor work. Portions will be suspended from the ceiling, some covering walls and parts sprawling on floors. 

For myself as an artist, I am a combination of humbled, excited, and nervous at the prospect of this challenge before me. Before I ever step into the gallery with my work, decisions have been made about the show title, printing accompanying images prepared for the banner, postcards, press releases and social media plans. It has been my experience that installing exhibitions is a true collaboration between the artist and curator/exhibition director as well as with countless others who make important contributions to the process. It is only with the true dedication of the staff, that I am able to create and install. The gallery space dictates ideas about what works to include and where they should be placed - viewers can think about their own living spaces and relate to the challenges of creating a home - and how each piece of furniture and object is thoughtfully positioned. 

With many experiences behind me, I recognize the installation process as a creative act with a voice all its own, adding to that of creating the art itself.Next week I will be posting more photos of the process and then completion of the installation.

Packing up my work on Sunday, I arrived Monday morning with my car loaded with art for the installation.  It was a nice surprise to see the large banner hanging in front of the gallery, showing images of my work and details about the exhibition...
After unloading my car, the work began....
This image shows just a few of the over 50 separate pieces eventually suspended from the ceiling, each having two to three points to hang. Because the ceiling is made of metal, magnets were used to suspend the individual pieces.

I had lots of help yesterday, all of whom either teach at Mesa or have graduated from the Museum Studies program so they knew just what to do...

Today is day 2 - with more to come on the installation!

A two and a half day journey developing the installation of my show at Mesa College Art Gallery is in its end stages. I don't often experience the hands on installation of my exhibitions since they can be in various cities around the country, so it is of great benefit to have had this opportunity to create the space in a very personal way. It has been a joy to work with skilled staff members that have helped every step of the way. Here is a peak, with a few images.....

Monday completes the installation with sound/video portion.....more to come!

Installation: Part 3
The final installation of Macro Views, Micro Wonders is almost complete. Francisco Eme, sound artist and I spent 3-4 hours working on installing the sound and video portion of 'Sensations' which is now in place. It's very exciting as this is my first installation using my video and Francisco's sound.  Mesa College student Jenny Armer worked on carefully lighting the exhibition but was also instrumental in putting together the outdoor banner, posters and postcards for the show. Photographer Melissa Au shot images of the entire exhibition. Pat Vine orchestrated many aspects of the planning and details which has been a key factor in finally bringing together this exhibition. I look forward in anticipation of the show opening on Thursday, September 10th, 4:30 - 6:30 pm, with a lecture I will be doing following it. The public is welcome and invited! Hope to see you then.....
Melissa Au photographer, shooting the installation of the entire exhibition.

Francisco Eme, sound artist explaining his process to Allesandra Moctezuma, Gallery Director,
 as he installs the sound portion of 'Sensations' installation.

Pat Vine, Gallery Coordinator and Allesandra Moctezuma working on final lighting details.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Running with Scissors at Art on 30th

By Patricia Frischer, coordinator, SDVAN

Running with Scissors San Francisco Collage Artists Exhibition in the north Kate Ashton Gallery at Art on 30th (
4434 30th Street, SD 92116) features collages made by artists participating in the Collage-a-Rama collage-making sessions at San Francisco’s Arc Gallery during 2015: Carrington Arredondo, Glenn Bachmann, KIrk Brooks, Kathy Fujii-Oka, Dilcia Giron, Dianne Hoffman, Soad Kader, Mike KImball, Amy Levine, Priscilla Otani, Tracy Starr, Denise Tarrantino, Stephen C. Wagner & Tanya Wilkinson.

Collage derives from the French word "coller" meaning "glue", coined by Braque and Picasso in the early 20th century. The advent of collage signaled a radical shift in art, in its conception, perception, process, & the end product. Collage has expanded the language of art, allowing for greater diversity and an increased range of expression. Using found, fragmented, and discarded materials, collage artists make a case for informality and improvisation. 

 Summertime is the title of the show in the south gallery.

Art on 30th, an art to market community dedicated to providing  everything you need to find your unique visual voice and take your art from easel to market. Located in the heart of the North Park Arts and Culture District north of El Cajon Ave., they have 15 artist's studio with two now available. They offer classes as well as the exhibition space and specialize in helping artists take their art to market. More info: Kate Ashton 619-894-9009

The entrance to Art on 30th is welcoming with a gallery on either side of the staircase. Upstairs on 15 studio spaces all with glass doors so you can look in on every visit and see new creations

The north gallery space showing Collage a Rama

Small wall with all works $125 by a variety of artists
 Summertime is the title of the show in the south gallery. 
Lynn Steffner - a little Anslem Keifer right here in SD

Donna Stewart - one of my favorites in this show and my husband agreed
 Instructors Wall
Chris Finch, one of the art instructors

Kate Ashton, owner of Art on 30th and painter/instructor

Kate Ashton and Stephen C. Wagner. Stephen is a former Arts Education director at SDAI and now part owner of ARC Gallery in San Francisco which originated the Running with Scissors exhibition
 Running with Scissors
Stephen C. Wagner

Pricilla Otani

Dianne Hoffman

Dianne Hoffman

Monday, August 10, 2015

Multi-Media Exhibition by Six Artists - Created By Ship In The Woods, At Space 4 Art San Diego

Ship In The Woods
Exhibition at Space 4 Art 
325 15th St, San Diego 

Opening Reception: Saturday, August 15, 5-10 PM
Show Runs August 18 - 21

article by Cathy Breslaw 

Adam Belt
A Thing Is A Hole, in A Thing It Is Not          plywood, mirrors, light        36x48x84 inches
A Ship In The Woods, a non-profit community arts organization dedicated to promoting elevated conversations about art and culture, brings a multi-dimensional arts event to Space 4 Art, an exhibition space in San Diego. Entitled ‘Here/Hear’, this exhibition’s opening reception includes visual art, performance, music, film and installation. 

Six artists will use sound, light and viewer interactive experience to express their own perception of the ‘here and now’.  The curatorial group organized by Curator, Lianne Mueller, strives to create exhibitions that use a combination of science, psychology, philosophy and the element of surprise to encourage viewers/participants to reflect and observe their daily lives with increased awareness.   

The exhibition includes artist Lana Caplan who will engage the audience with an interactive piece, Adam Belt whose work illuminates images which slowly appear from a barren frame of blackness, Morgan Mandalay challenges us to become an active ‘looker’, Francisco Eme manipulates simple elements using natural reflection, and defraction of sound to create an ethereal soundscape and Gabie Strong and Matthew Hebert bring a tactile curtain of light and sound. 

The opening reception on Saturday August 15th is a fundraiser($8.00 donation) for the  Ship in the Woods plans for a new residency program, future education programs and a recording studio. There will be special performances throughout the night by music groups PRGRM and HEXA  whose music is a combination of moody, rhythmic and hypnotic sound that is electronic and experimental. A food truck preparing Cajun  cuisine will be located outside of Space 4 Art during the reception. 

The show runs August 18 – 21 from 11 am – 4 pm.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Creative Journey: La Jolla artist Faiya Fredman is still exploring new techniques at age 90

by Lonnie Burstein Hewitt, first published in La Jolla Light

Faiya Fredman at home in La Jolla
Faiya Fredman at home in La Jolla — Lonnie Hewitt

Longtime La Jollan Faiya Fredman, who will turn 90 in September, has been making art for most of her life. She began as a young child during the Depression, painting at an easel her father made for her to compensate for the loneliness of a life in the desert when his architecture/contracting business in Phoenix collapsed. She went on to study Visual Arts at UCLA, explore a wide range of media, and see her work shown around the world, as well as locally, at the Athenaeum and Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego.

Her work includes mixed-media paintings and large-scale steel sculptures, but she is probably best known for her botanical images, which start out as bits of leaves, twigs and flowers arranged on a flatbed scanner. They are arresting, unusual pieces that show flora, not at the peak of their freshness, but withering, on their way out. Derrick Cartwright, former director of San Diego Museum of Art, called them “luminous compositions of breathtaking beauty.”

What draws her to create these portrayals of decomposition?
“I want people to look at life as a process we all go through,” she said. “The buds symbolize birth, then there’s the flowering and the withering. I’m showing that the withering can be just as beautiful as the buds.”

The artist with curator Mark-Elliot Lugo, surrounded by her work. — Lonnie Hewitt
Curator Marc-Elliott Lugo, who presented several shows of Fredman’s works at the Pacific Beach Library and included her in the recent exhibit of “100 artists, 100 years” at the Oceanside Museum of Art, is a fervent admirer.
“Most of her life, she’s been concerned with the cycles of life and nature, and there’s always a profound element to her work,” he said. “And her pieces are never just decorative; they’re elegant.”
These days, she is using her scanner to combine botanical images with mementos from her travels with her late husband, Milton “Micky” Fredman, a dynamic civic activist and the first chairman of San Diego’s Commission for Arts & Culture. Together, they visited ancient sites that often inspired Faiya’s art.
Now, some of the puppets and masks they collected are showing up in her new pieces, multi-layered lenticular prints that are turned into shifting-image 3-D by a specialized printer in Los Angeles.

Face masks peer through the flora in one of Fredman’s lenticular images. The final pieces appear to be three-dimensional. — Courtesy
One of the interesting things about Fredman is how tuned-in she is to technology — not bad, for a 90-year-old whose husband wouldn’t let her use his first computer years ago. “He thought I’d get it all messed up,” she recalled. “But finally he decided to give me my own computer, and I had somebody come in and teach me how to use it.”

She still has the original large-scale printer she used to create layered prints for her photo collages of Greek ruins and local coastlines, though she now has an even larger one with top-quality color and archival paper for her current work.

“She’s always moving forward,” said Allwyn O’Mara, who has been Fredman’s assistant for over 20 years. “The little girl who started making art at 4 years old is still creating, and using all her high-tech tools like a painter.”

“Did you see my latest pieces?” Fredman asked, when interviewed at her home. “I’m kinda pleased with them myself. Every time I come up with a new idea, that’s my favorite.”

What is a Lenticular Print?
Lenticular printing is a multi-step process used to produce printed images with the illusion of depth or the ability to change as the image is viewed from different angles. This process can be used to create various frames of animation (for a motion effect), offsetting the various layers at different increments (for a 3D effect), or simply to show a set of alternate images which may appear to transform into each other. Source: Wikipedia

Monday, August 3, 2015

24th Annual Juried Exhibition at Athenaeum Music & Arts Library

by Patricia Frischer, coordinator, SD Visual Arts

Athenaeum Music & Arts Library (1008 Wall St, La Jolla) 24th Annual Juried Exhibition from July 31 to Aug 29. This years’ jurors include critic and author, Robert Pincus, PhD., Visiting Professor, University of San Diego and Tina Yapelli, Professor, San Diego State University and Director, SDSU Downtown Gallery. More info: Katie Walders  858-454-5872

With over 40 artists often represented by more than one work of art, the Athenaeum was full to brimming for this prestigious juried exhibition. And the crowd on the walls matched the audience on the opening night with a large selection of the art world out to see and be seen. It is always wonderful to see this sort of energy generated at an event. 

Like most juried shows, it was hard to find a running theme for the show, so I just  choose a few of my personal favorites to give you a feel of the variety. I have included notes that I hope make you want to check them for yourself with all the rest of the work. Go see, be seen.

Emily Slapin presented a portrait of this girl/women painted and framed like a tapestry. It was intriguing and reminded me of the Vermeer women like that featured at the Timkin Gallery currently. You know something is going on but not sure what and that lets your imagination run wild. she seems like a little girl dressing up and pretending to be a seductress.

Kris Moore's work does not come through that well in the photo, but the two photos were dramatically hung in a corner. The figure on the left has some strange line between the prow and the nose and it is only when you realize that the other figure is an elephant that you realize that the image is morphed. In my first glance I thought it was an alien.

Constance Rawlins gave us this "Harvey" rabbit, or maybe it is a "mascot" like those of Brian Dick. This photo raises so many questions, but they don't need answering. You can just enjoy the look of it and imagine what is behind the mask that goes with the body.

I first saw work by Allan Morrow at Perry Meyer Fine Art where I became a fan so when I saw this series with the textures and and colors, I easily took delighted in the strongly designed composition.

I am a sucker for a hands on  intimate work on paper and these by Mihaela Luca are just the sort of charming gestures that make me remember why I ran a gallery in London specializing in drawings.

Mihaela Luca also made this collage/drawing that is so fresh and natural that it jumps off the page.