Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Paradiso/Inferno:Drought and Fire in the Central Coast Landscapes of Nicole Strasburg

August 2 - September 8, 2010

Art After Dark Receptions:
August 6 & September 3 from 6-9pm

ARTS Obispo
and the Central California Museum of Art are pleased to present a solo exhibition of Santa Barbara painter and printmaker, Nicole Strasburg.

Gap Fire Day 1, by Nicole Strasburg

Gap Fire, Day One ©2009
Paradiso/Inferno expands Central California landscape painting by moving beyond idyllic depictions of nature to portray the environmental realities of drought and the wind-blown wildfires in Santa Barbara County. Avoiding temptations to sensationalize, Strasburg’s paintings are minimalist in their approach with a muted poetic color sensibility based upon abstracted forms drawn from the land, water and sky.

Santa Barbara and Montecito are among the most beautiful and affluent communities in the United States, situated against rugged coastal sagebrush mountains with dramatic views of the Pacific Ocean. For residents and tourists alike, the region is a paradise.
Strasburg has lived in Santa Barbara since she was a youth and knows the region well, understanding that the area is frighteningly vulnerable to periodic fires, fanned out of control by raging winds, jumping from dry canyon to dry canyon. Such conditions created incredible infernos like the Tea, Gap, and Jesusita fires of 2008 and 2009.

According to Strasburg, “I strive to show an understanding of locale and environment from a number of standpoints. My process comes from internal promptings and emotional influences rather than intellectual ones. The paintings are records of personal connections and the allure of knowing a place intimately – in its beauty, fragility, danger and resilience . . . Color comes from the dialogue with the painting and a visceral reaction to the experience in the field.”

Curator Gordon Fuglie, a native Californian with a 30-year involvement with California art and culture, organized this exhibition for ARTS Obispo as part of a series of projects developed by the Central California Museum of Art and displayed in venues throughout the mid-state. He is a member of the Advisory Council of the museum and serves on the exhibition committee for ARTS
Space Obispo. (reproduced from ARTS space obispo website, news page)

Arts Space Obispo
SLO Creamery, #165, 570 Higuera Street, San Luis Obispo

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Faux pas or blunder?

Seems that someone at the Santa Cruz Art League wasn't paying attention to the ribbon labels carefully. As it turns out, my beloved Shoreline painting was not, in fact, an honoree of honorable mention status but a First Prize winner in the oil painting category.

It's wonderful to know, yes. A check arrived with congratulations last week, very nice. However, I am still somewhat miffed. I'll tell you why. The entire show the painting, First Prize, hung with an honorable mention ribbon attached to it. Also, I found out about the prize, by mail, 3 weeks after the show closed. Not even when the paintings were picked up was there any indication of the award.

I find it really odd behavior for an 80th annual statewide show to have such disorganized operations. For someone who worked in retail and has read up on consumer psychology, it would have been really great to have had that first place ribbon on my painting. Maybe I'm just being persnickety. Is it wrong to want the recognition?

So here it is again, drum roll please, the first place oil painting, Winter Shoreline, 80th Annual Juried Landscape Competition, Santa Cruz, California June 2010.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Summer, at last, arrives

...and with that there are big plans for some serious hangin' and doin' nothin'.

Molly is way ahead of us!

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