Sunday, February 24, 2019

Winter Openings at OMA and the 1st Encinitas Art Night

by Patricia Frischer

Our Saturday night took us up and down the north coast of San Diego County after a lovely day and NO RAIN!  We started in Encinitas with the first of the new Encinitas Art Night series.I really look forward to seeing the art but I always seem to  forget when I go to openings that there will be lots of people.   With so many friends and colleagues and lots of connections to make and renew,  it is a valuable experience.  Yes, the people get in the way of the art,  but we stayed late at the museum to have a clear view of the images to take the photos you see below. 

We celebrated OMA's  opening of VALYA: SHE, Matthew Barnes: Painter of the Night, and San Diego Surreal  as well as National Watercolor Society, Southern California Inspirations, Past and Present.

VALYA: SHE  Valya has taken her soft sculptures to a new level with this massive installation that fills the whole new ground floor gallery at OMA. With the powerful bright red color and a reflective mirror wall that double the effect, we are fascinated with the patterns and textures she has created. Valya believes, "Art is the uniting thread of life that connects different cultures and overcomes monstrous socio-political constructs."  I am not sure about that last part, but sitting here writing during the academy awards on TV,  I certainly believe that art does unite us. Of course if I was watching Miss America, I would also hope for world peace! 


San Diego Surreal  Finding Surreal artist in San Diego is a master feat of organization. Congratulation Susan M. Anderson, the curator. There are 50 artists from the beginning of the 20th century until now. I did not know that all the following artists lived in California as refugees from WWII: Salvador Dali, Max Ernst, Stanley William Hayter, Charles Howard, Gordon Onslow Ford, Wolfgang Paalen, and Man Ray. but they do enrich the show and put a context to some of the more contemporary artists.  I have made a very small selection of some of the works  that drew my attention mainly from the 21st century. Yes, it might stretch the definition of surreal, but what is art if not ever changing. 

Hugo Crosthwaite. Tom Noel tells us “As some of you may already have heard, Hugo Crosthwaite is undergoing treatment in Mexico for stage three testicular cancer. His prognosis is not good but he is fighting this with all his strength.  A GoFundMe Hugo page has been set up for his medical expenses, he has no insurance. Please help if you can. Let Hugo know he is not facing this dark battle alone” $26,969  has already been raised! 

Allison Schulnik

de la Torre brothers

de la Torre brothers plus a mugging Irene de Watteville

Ethel Greene - a true surrealist and I had not seen this one before so that was thrilling. 

Jen Trute - a reminder of this fine artist who left us too soon.

Marianela de la Hoz

Harry Sternberg

Mark Ryden 

National Watercolor Society, Southern California Inspirations, Past and Present  I have chosen just one subject, water, to demonstrate how no matter was the year of the work, watercolor is timeless. But there was a variety of subjects and techniques demonstrated here and all at a very high quality of technique.

James Patrick, 1938

Shuang Li, 2013

Nancy Swan, 2008

Matthew Barnes: Painter of the Night is another artist new to me. These are strong works, slightly macabre and this one almost fits into the surrealist category with those window like eyes.

Matthew Barnes

Encinitas is celebrating all it wonderful art events by hosting Encinitas Art Night four times a year and sat Feb 23 was the first of these series in 2019. Thanks to Jim Gilliam for this effort which will be ongoing. 

At the Library, the works in a series of Lightsculptures by William Leslie and Alessandra Colfi was as always impressive. Those in the lobby had programmable changing colors of lights.   Dean Andrews showed long horizontal color field paintings and  Carol Lang has small woven sculptures in the display boxes. 

William Leslie and Alessandra Colfi

Dean Andrews

Carol Lang

Is was a big evening from the south of North County to the North but I want to give a shot out to other artists in Encinitas: at the Community Center artists Cherie Gollaher, Kim Simas and Margot Villa, at the Civic Center artists Kelsey Overstreet and Lily Pourat and at Lux Institute Courtney Mattison. Read out separate report: Courtney Mattison at Lux Art Institute

Upcoming Art Nights will take place on Saturdays, 6-9pm on April 6, June 1, August 3, October 5 and November 23, 2019.

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