Saturday, May 25, 2019

Sandra Chanis sculptures: FRIVOLOUS

by Patricia Frischer

Sandra Chanis exhibits at  Art Gallery of Phillips Center at Sts.Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church (3459 Manchester Avenue, Cardiff by the Sea, CA 92007) The show runs from May 25 to June 27. The Gallery is open F 4-7pm,  SAT 11-2pm,  SUN 1-4pm,  M 4-7pm. Or by appointment from Pam 760.942.0920 or contact Sandra Chanis

We are lucky in San Diego to have many libraries which have art galleries, but have you notices that churches now have art galleries as well. The newest one is spearheaded by Father Michael at the Greek Orthodox Church in Cardiff.  With his master's degree in art and his own artistic talents, he has dedicated his attention with a committee of art enthusiast at the church to bringing a lovely space to life. The new church on the premises allows this room with high ceiling and white walls and even a stage to be a new home for artist to exhibit.   

A fine choice for the first one person show is these  white creations by Chanis best known for her years of support of the Oceanside Museum of Art. She titled the show Frivolous and that lighthearted feeling is prevalent especially as this is an artist known for stone carving and bronze casting...both very arduous processes. In her own words, "There is something about working with clay, from dirt, from that raw and responsive nature of the material, that makes shapes, shadows and empty spaces reveal themselves through your hands with that inexplicable energy that is the spirit of art."  

The artist might claim she has no control of what happens as the figures emerge, and that they have no purpose, but it is a pleasure to fantasize about works that have titles that are clues. Think Tank, Goldie Locks, Balance, Three Rams and a Hand all in stoneware, can take you on journey to the past and future. 


Goldie Locks

Think Tank

Three Rams and a Hand

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

SD Art Prize at the Athenaeum produced by San Diego Visual Arts Network

By Patricia Frischer

SD Art Prize  Presented by San Diego Visual Arts Network at the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library (1008 Wall St. La Jolla, 92037) with Anne Mudge with Erin Dace Behling, and Robert Matheny with Max Robert DailyThis exhibitions runs from Sat, May 11 to Sat, July 6  Words of support from Lynn Susholtz, Art Produce, Jacqueline Silverman, director San Diego Art Institute, Dave Hampton, curator for Robert Matheny and Jill Dawsey, PhD, Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego now available for free download in the  SD Art Prize Catalog 2018  More info: Patricia Frischer

The 2018 recipients of the SD Art Prize were honored during the opening of their exhibition at the Athenaeum Music and Art Library on Friday May 10th. The show included new art work by all of these artists of excellence. As always, the Athenaeum provided a perfect showcase.

San Diego Visual Arts Network is pleased to announce that Chi Essary has been selected as the new curator of the San Diego Art Prize. Over the next year Essary will be streamlining and restructuring the prize to focus solely on emerging artists, increasing the prize’s visibility and building public engagement.

“I’m looking forward to streamlining the Art Prize and building its reputation and audience. It’s a valued milestone in the artist community and I’d like to build the general public’s interest in the prize and the emerging artists we have right here in San Diego.”  Chi Essary, new curator of the SD Art Prize

“We feel really fortunate to put the SD Art Prize into the capable hands of Chi Essary who will breathe new life into this time honored award for excellence.“ Patricia Frischer, founder San Diego Visual Arts Network which funds and produces the SD Art Prize 

Chi Essary

Anne Mudge creates ethereal environments of complicated wire works that looked amazingly fragile but turned out to be as resilient as its creator. Tension wire and physics keep these very organic works afloat. Mudge says there are challenges and, "...magic moments of discovery" in her process-based art. In this exhibition we see new works in delicate silver tones, but also some white works in this very large display. A whole wall is dedicated to darker pieces with more pronounced intersections. A favorite was one that transitions from earth to sky, dark to light. 
Anne Mudge 


Mudge works with geometry and repetitious patterning and shares these aspects of creation with Erin Dace Behling’s furniture design. They are both creating landscapes because they are arranging biological components into a sort of scenery, but Behling is using a wider variety of materials and her works are functional. She uses very familiar components of the natural world but in unfamiliar ways. Look closely at the variations in color on the handcrafted wood and concrete which reflect the magically colors of the Utah deserts and mountains. 
Erin Dace Behling

Max Robert Daily is a butcher and puppeteer and art installer by trade and the proprietor of Oslo sardine bar, really an art installation. After displaying last fall at SD Art Prize  at Art San Diego presented by San Diego Visual Arts Network, Max Daily still has one stop to make in Santa Fe before returning from a year of traveling to Art Fairs around the country sponsored by Redwood Media Group. He will be showing again at Art San Diego which this year moves to the convention center. The Sea Glass and Skipping Stone dispenser in this exhibition really works and for 25 cents, you could own a few pieces of this installation. The dispenser is set on a pile of books from the Athenaeum.  Go up to $10 and get your own package of sardines and crackers. A free newspaper hat/sailing boat comes with each interaction if you are lucky.  Daily really is a clown and  a piece we have not seen before is a box of clown death mask noses sitting on a stack of newspaper comics. Clown play a varied role in our community and the life blood of Max Daily's work is that variety. 
Max Robert Daily

outside of the box


Robert Matheny has played with every medium and combines strong conceptual art ideas with a tangible product which is almost never functional. He is a master trickster with a sense of humor of the cynical variety and the constant surprise of never knowing what he will do next. Matheny had a terrific retrospective this year at the SD History Museum (maybe he is not so Almost Anonymous anymore!) He reports that the "as usual, whatever I select to show will be spectdaculary." The tiny blue and gold glitter dot shown off in an elaborate frame is part of a new series of glitter works. At the start of his more than 50 year career he used metal flake paint surfaces on sculptures.  He recently posted instructions for a meditation by concentrating on one flake of silver glitter placed on grey pants until they catch the light of the reflected sun.  He asked the question, "which do you like best the "real" 2 dollar bill or the "fake" one?  Makes you think, doesn't it!

Robert Matheny 

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Ruth Platner: Yom Hashoah - A Holocaust Remembrance through the Arts a Leichtag Foundation

By Patricia Frischer

Ruth Platner's exhibition: Yom Hashoah: A Holocaust Remembrance through the Arts at the Farm House Gallery of the Leichtag Foundation is a Holocaust survivor's story in painting and drawings. 

Ruth Platner's painting are colorful and positive and because the show is introduced as a Holocaust survivors exhibition, these seems to be at odds. But Ruth who is 92 and in attendance wrote a stirring message that was read by her daughter. she explained how as Jew in Germany in WW II she was banned from school and bomb shelters. Her parents managed to take her into the country side and one day on the way home from school, she came across the crater created by a bomb. She reached in and grabbed some clay which had been revealed after the top soil was blown away. Soon she was sculpting a head and found that the war had revealed art as her passion. The art in turn has been a large component in healing her from the war.

She attended the Hamburg Art Institute, married Fred Platner in 1949, moved to Wisconsin and in 1978 to Carlsbad. She created and administered the OMA School of Art and her incarcerated veterans program is based her book  “Meditation and Art”

To see this show which is up for a limited time in May contact Naomi Nussbaum 

The evening also supported the the Butterfly Project by having the attendees painting one ceramic butterfly in commemoration of each child who perished in the Holocaust.  This will be put on permanent display in The Hive which is a community workshop at the Leichtag Foundation. 

The Anti- Defamation League gave a presentation about how their No Place for Hate  program strives to support anti-bias and bullying interventions on school campuses across the country. Presentations by two local students was sad and heartening at the same time.