Aztec Dahlia Gardens, 36 x 36″, oil on canvas, SOLD, giclées available
Art Collectors: you can now visit artists and buy art from the safety of your favorite armchair or get your mask and hand sanitizer to visit in person.
Please help test this virtual project by going to my online gallery https://sebartsvirtual.org/artists/connell/. 6 paintings at a time will be available directly from the SAVOS shop during September. Kindly share this news with friends who might enjoy the healing comfort of art, to visit online or to own, or who are simply curious. Let me know how this new site works for you.
My physical studio will not be open, but more images including oils, pastels, watercolors, drawings and giclée prints will be accessible via my website, Facebook, text, emails, phone, and Zoom. Please contact me any day this month (10 am – 5 pm) and I can help you navigate this virtual landscape. Links are at the bottom of the email.
Also my art is on the walls at Upstairs Art Gallery, Center Street next to Healdsburg Plaza, and Gallery at Corricks, 637 4th Street, Santa Rosa.
Limited outdoor appointments may be available to pick up art from my studio or to see a piece that calls to you in person. We will observe current Covid safety regulations as listed on the SAVOS website. Looking forward to in-person hugs in 2021!!
Each SAVOS artist’s page will show if their studio is open virtually or physically. There are about 137 of us! https://sebartsvirtual.org/
Check in on the website for virtual events, panel conversations, demos, videos. On Tuesday, Sept 15, at 1:00 pm, I will be on a virtual panel with other SAVOS painters to talk about our artistic processes, motivations etc. Please join us! You will need a zoom account. Join live
Wildflower Heaven, 2, oil on canvas, 30 x 30″, available on SAVOS website
Awakened in Art: Dream and art tell difficult political truths
Like surrealism, the political-art movement opposing totalitarianism in the aftermath of the horrors of WWI, the power of art and dreaming in these turbulent times holds the possibility for social change.
Last week, less than a month before the 2018 midterm elections, a cadre of Northern California artists shared their art and held a dialogue to raise awareness about U.S. domestic and foreign policies in the month-long mixed-media exhibition “Wake-Up! The Political Power of Art and Dreams,” held at the Claudia Chapline Gallery in Stinson Beach on Oct. 28, that now continues online.
Works in that show included Flag of Death, created by artist and gallery owner Claudia Chapline, which graphically depicts the reality of U.S. foreign policy. Chapline says the piece came from a dream she had on March 11, 2006, the third anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. “For me, the flag painting symbolises the discrepancy between American ideals and manifest American policy,” says Chapline.
Santa Rosa artist Marsha Connell’s “Dream Vessels” collage works, featuring landscapes spiked with light, were inspired by dreams Connell had a month after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990. She dreamt that women writers, artists and poets were brought to observe preparations for the first Persian Gulf War when a voice boomed out, “The women soldiers will go first!”
“I felt a distress so profound there were no words for it,” Connell says.
A friend suggested the dream meant the artist was to bear witness, and the collages became her way to communicate and begin a healing process that ultimately brought her peace.
She calls the collages “Dream Vessels,” because each dreamlike picture contains a vessel. “The vessel offers the possibility of transformation, hope and reconciliation of opposites,” she says.
Joyce Lynn is founder and editor-in-chief of Plum Dreams Media. See works from ‘Wake-Up! The Political Power of Art and Dreams’ at plumdreamsmedia.com.
THE POLITICAL POWER OF ART AND DREAMS by Joyce Lynn, Exhibition Curator
For centuries, dreams have guided nations toward (or away from) their destinies. Dreams have revealed the divine plan for countries, cultures, and citizens. Think of Joseph’s biblical interpretation of the Pharaoh’s dream proscribing public policy to prevent the Egyptians from starvation. Or consider the Roman philosopher Cicero’s Dream of Scipio imparting the essence of statesmen-like virtues.
These dreams and dreamers show the profound power of remembering, understanding, listening to, and expressing our dreams. Our nighttime dreams upend government, corporate, and media propaganda. Once inner wisdom is tapped denial is impossible; positive action manifests.
Such timely, insightful sometimes witty wisdom gleaned from dreams and depicted by artists can lead to personal and planetary well-being. Dreams give a picture of reality. Dreams enable us to see clearly, revealing hidden truths. When we listen to our own dream guidance, we the people can reclaim our power to govern for the public good.
Like surrealism, the political-art movement opposing totalitarianism in the aftermath of the horrors of World War 1, the power of art and dreaming in these turbulent times holds the possibility of social change.
Art and dreams are conduits to truth, paths to healing and transformation. Art and dreams wake us to reality and response.”
“Wake-Up! The Political Power of Art and Dreams,” a mixed media exhibition, was an exhibition at the Claudia Chapline Gallery, Stinson Beach, California, during October, the month before the 2018 Congressional elections to create dialogue and raise consciousness about U.S domestic and foreign policy. It continues online to expand its reach at PlumDreamsMedia.com.
WAKE-UP! includes works derived from dreams by Northern California artists: Dream Vessels by MARSHA CONNELL; Flag of Death and other images of war by CLAUDIA CHAPLINE; works by artist-activist RICHARD KAMLER; FrankenBush, commissioned by PLUM DREAMS MEDIA; They Never Stood a Chance, an installation of remembrance and survival by JENNIFER LUGRIS; and a dream about Donald Trump’s Art of the Deal with God captured by NICOLE FRAZER.
WAKE-UP! is an activity of the 50 State Initiative of ForFreedoms.org, a platform for civic engagement, discourse, and direct action for artists in the U.S.
A percentage of sales from the exhibition will be donated to Bay Area peace candidates.
(While this online exhibition is being updated, contact Plum Dreams Media info@PlumDreamsMedia.com, 415-267-7620 for more information.)
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Claudia Chapline cchapline.com
On March 11, 2006, the third anniversary of the US invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq, artist, activist, and gallery owner Claudia Chapline of Stinson Beach, California, dreamt:
“I’m standing on a ladder painting a large (American) flag. When I awoke the next day, I sketched the flag in my journal, and then I made a small painting from the drawing/dream. The stars resemble exploding bombs, the stripes, missiles. A skeleton’s head emerges from the war machinery.
“For me, the flag painting symbolizes the discrepancy between American ideals and manifest American policy.”
The Claudia Chapline Gallery and Sculpture Garden has shown Northern California contemporary art since 1987, a cultural crossroads for visitors to the Pacific coast and to residents of Northern California.
A month after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, artist Marsha Connell dreamt that women writers, artists, and poets were brought to observe preparations for the first Persian Gulf War from the bottom of a hill. A voice boomed out: The women soldiers will go first!!
This view that appeared in a dream began a healing process that ultimately brought her peace.
A friend suggested the dream meant the artist was to bear witness. Before this dream, Connell felt artists lacked power to elicit change. Then she wondered, “Could I create art about the war, but not beautify the destruction?”
Connell cut up magazines and photos, made two collages and duplicated them on a color copier to allow travel as letters to her daughter in Jerusalem for her junior year. This shortly became an aesthetic choice as she discovered how the printmaking process enhances the visual unity of the images, montaged from found sources. When she contemplated her images, she says, “They shocked me. They moved me so much. There was a lot of darkness but also hope. They had hope for the world.”
Collages, dark landscapes spiked with light, became her way to communicate. “I felt a distress so profound there were no words for it,” Connell says.
She calls the collages “Dream Vessels” because each dreamlike picture contains a vessel — a pot, a vase, a ship. In her poem, “Dream Vessels,” Connell writes: “The vessel offers the possibility of transformation, hope/reconciliation of opposites…Vessels poise/between her story and history, bridging nature and the human-made, bridging hope and forces of destruction.”
“Somehow, through doing this, I felt I was finding a way to bring hope together with darkness,” she reveals. “As the work told me its stories, it was bringing more sense to the world. The collages were my healing. Gradually, I found my own center again and my own peace through doing this.”
The Dream Vessels series took on its own momentum, now almost one hundred fifty images, printed in editions numbered up to twenty-five. Like intimately scaled murals, the collages incorporate stories about family, culture, history, and the environment, including the devastation of ongoing wars, oil spills, firestorms, the disasters of Three Mile Island and September Eleventh, as well as simple pleasures and life’s mysteries, dance, music, motherhood. They also function as homages and memorials.
The content emerged from dreams, and the process of creating them is like dreaming in the day, elusive and speaking in metaphor, gradually revealing layers of meaning to both artist and viewer.
My Studio 2180 Beverly Way, Santa Rosa by appointment. (Showing Anchor Bay Inlet, above, and many other paintings in oil, watercolor and pastel) firstname.lastname@example.org 707·527·7754 main; 707·331·0105 cell Open to public during Art Trails Open Studios October 13, 14, 20, 21, 2018. Save the Date! Bring your friends!
Corrick’s (showing Pond in Bloom above), 637 4thStreet, Santa Rosa,
10 am to 5 pm Mon – Sat
Art Trails Gallery at Corrick’s, and My Daughter the Framer
Receptions every First Friday 5-7 pm
Upstairs Art Gallery (showing Mimi’s Garden 1 & 2), 306 Center Street, Healdsburg, 11 am to 6 pm daily 21st Anniversary Celebration June 23 Saturday 2-8 pm. Join us!
Empire College, 3035 Cleveland Ave, Santa Rosa 10 am to 6 pm Mon-Sat
On the walls outside the Law Library
Please join May’s featured artists MARSHA CONNELL and DAN SCANNELL Saturday May 12, 2-5 pm for our artist reception
Petits Bijoux Small Painting Jewels by Marsha Connell
Plein air painter, Marsha Connell, is exhibiting a collection of Petits Bijoux, Intimate Scale Paintings from France to California, in the Upstairs Gallery’s Small Works Showcase. The Showcase is uniquely situated to be viewed as you climb up and down the staircase.
These “Small Jewels” celebrate encounters with wild and domestic landscapes, and traveled home in suitcases to tell the story. Marsha’s expressive and rhythmic brushstrokes are a dance of color, in oil and pastel.
Reaching the top of the stairs, you can meander in Marsha’s larger scale garden paintings, from the coast to tabletop bouquets.
Creek at Bowling Ball Beach by Marsha Connell, oil, 12 x 12″
Upstairs Art Gallery is on the Mezzanine above Levin Books on the Healdsburg Plaza, across from the Gazebo.
Stop in anytime to view this month-long show, open daily 11-6, hosted warmly by the dozen plus artist/owners.
Snow and Wildflowers 1 by Marsha Connell, oil on canvas, 12″x12″
I’m a new partner and will be hosting the gallery: Saturday May 19, 3-6; Sunday May 20, 2-6; Sunday May 27, 11-6.
Renoir’s Bridge 1 by Marsha Connell, oil on canvas, 7 ½”x 9 ½”
Flora and Fauna in Silver and Gold by Dan Scannell
Dan Scannell’s new series was inspired by Japanese screens from the 19th century.
He became interested in the highly stylized nature scenes, and thought it would be interesting to create paintings based on Sonoma county flora and fauna. He then finished the backgrounds of these paintings using gold and silver leaf as Japanese artists did when making screens.
In the spirit of an offering, a gift to our community, about 130 Art Trails artists throughout Sonoma County, will open studios and hearts to the public, sharing beauty and hope. My studio, #24 on Art Trails map, 2180 Beverly Way, Santa Rosa, will be open both weekends, 10am – 5pm.
Just as music can be inspiring and soothing, light and dark, taking us on emotional journeys without words, seeing wonderful art can be uplifting, inspirational, moody and joyful, bringing comfort, solace, contemplation, refuge, and pleasure. I invite you to visit, and have a hug, share a story, tea and cookies, and travel through my plein air paintings to healing landscapes, places of memory, dreams and renewal.
Our hearts are breaking for those who have been devastated by fire. Several Art Trails artists have lost homes, studios and/or their entire art inventory. The Art Trails Artist Relief Fund has been established. Donations can be made directly at many Art Trails studios and exhibits, and on-line at www.SonomaCountyArtTrails.org or www.SebArts.org. Make checks payable to SCA, with a notation indicating Art Trails Artists Relief Fund; checks may also be mailed to Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 S. High St., Sebastopol, CA 95472.
I will be donating a percentage of painting sales, and will also be offering my contemplative Dream Vessels collages and some hand held carved clay sculptures.
An updated list of artists and maps showing participating studios will be posted by the weekend on the www.SonomaCountyArtTrails.org home page. We encourage visitors to stay up to date on road conditions.
Thank you for supporting the arts!
Marsha Connell, Chair Art Trails Steering Committee
Our permanent collection highlights a diverse selection of local artists, including James Armstrong, Elaine Greenwood, Chris Henry, Cari Hernandez, Dusanka Kralj, Benjamin Owen, and Paula Strother.
We invite you to enjoy these fabulous artworks, and light hors d’oeuvres expertly paired with La Crema’s acclaimed wines, including selections only available at the Estate, in a panoramic vineyard setting.
Friday, October 21, 6-7:30 pm,Sebastopol Center for the Arts
A Cabin Above a Lake began as a demo for AWS (Art Workshop of Western Sonoma County), just last month, inspired by small plein air paintings from our recent East Coast annual summer sojourn. As Helen Frankenthaler once said, ” I had the landscape in my arms when I painted it. I had the landscape in my mind and shoulder and wrist.” After revisiting it in my studio, I entered the painting in this juried exhibit, and am pleased that juror Sukey Bryan selected it, (along with about 56 other works from a pool of almost 700 entries). Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 High Street. Exhibit dates: Oct 21 – Nov 27, 2016. I’d be pleased if you joined me at the Artists’ reception for YOUR LANDSCAPE.
Saturday, October 22, 6 pm – 8 pm, History Museum of Sonoma County
Reception for Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Altars. This exhibition brings together altars created by community members, festive artwork and three-dimensional sculpture associated with the Day of the Dead celebration. I am honored that Peter Perez requested that my painting, Thinking About Bonnard, from my Murder of Crows series, be included in his altar against violence.
Exhibit runs October 18 – November 27.
The reception in the History Museum of Sonoma County is concurrent with a reception in the adjacent Art Museum of Sonoma County, for Faith Ringgold: An American Artist featuring storyquilts, works on paper, tankas, soft sculpture, and original illustrations.
It will be as easy as 1-2-3 to find my studio the next 2 weekends. It’s #123 on the Art Trails map. 10am-5pm. Come see what came out of my suitcase from my recent plein air painting journeys, West Coast to East, ocean to mountain, and back home in Sonoma county, and how it inspires studio work. Drawings, pastels, oils, watercolors. Small works to large. Hope to see you!
Here’s a great map of most of the artists in the Northeast Santa Rosa area participating in Art Trails. #123 is just about in the middle.
When I was a student in high school back in the *throat-clearing* 1980’s, our fully enclosed Midwestern high school had “wings.” All of the humanities and language classes were upstairs. Downstairs to the left there was a long winding hallway which housed the science classrooms. These halls always smelled a little funky and to me, they represented hands-on, relevant learning. Way at the other end of school were the hallways where the visual arts classes happened. I often craned my neck looking at the desktop easels to get a glimpse of what those classes were working on. I have always LOVED to draw, but in high school, drawing and painting weren’t “college prep” classes so I didn’t take many of them. I took so many science classes however, that they added up to 6 years of high school science.
What if things had been different?
STEM represents the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. STEM seeks to integrate these subjects while focusing on solving real-world problems in education and research. The STEM to STEAM movement, led by the Rhode Island School of Design, adds “Art and Design to the national agenda of STEM education and research in America. STEM + Art = STEAM”. The objective is to “foster the true innovation that comes with combining the mind of a scientist or technologist with that of an artist or designer.”
How would our world be different if artists and art were regularly included in scientific endeavors?
STEAM in our Own Backyard
Last year, Sonoma State University took the creative step of integrating authentic natural sounds with music and dance. With training from nationally known bioacoustics expert Dr. Bernie Krause, students from SSU recorded a diversity of sounds in the field at SSU’s Fairfield Osborne and Galbreath Wildlands Preserves. The recordings were given to composer Jesse Olsen Bay, who created an original composition. Choreographers Christine Cali and Kristen Daley and dance students used the original score to explore the sounds and create a dance performance. The collaboration was shared with the public last fall. Check it out here.
Art and Science Merge at Pepperwood
Collaboration is also central to the relationship between Santa Rosa Junior College visual artist and instructor Marsha Connell and biology instructor Shawn Brumbaugh. Marsha and Shawn discovered their common interests through co-teaching the Natural History of Pepperwood course, which certifies participants as UC California Naturalists. This course, which served as the pilot for the now state-wide program, emphasizes sketching, nature journaling, and practicing deep observation as fundamental skills for naturalists of all experience levels.
Marsha and Shawn will be presenting a Discover Nature lecture entitled The Synergy of Art and Science – Perspectives of Pepperwood on April 1st, 2016. Through lush slides of artistic renderings of the environment and its inhabitants, they will discuss the relationship between art and science including the historical importance of sketching in documenting scientific inquiry. Click here for more info on the lecture.
Later in the season, you can deepen your own observational skills and express your responses to Pepperwood’s verdant and blossoming spring landscape through a Landscape Painting class with Marsha on May 15th, 2016. Click here to learn more about this class.