On View: The Beauty of Life’s Journey

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This new exhibition features 20 nationally known California artists and revolves around each one’s interpretation of transitional elements in our lives.

“Transitions: The Beauty of Life’s Journey”
Firehouse Art Center, Harrington Gallery
Pleasanton, California
August 27 – October 22, 2022
firehousearts.org/gallery

From the organizers:

Artists Tia Kratter, Inna Cherneykina, and Kim Lordier all explored the organic world through their work with still life and different mediums, watercolor, oil, and pastel respectively.

Tia Kratter’s painting “Aging Gracefully” reflects the beauty of the aging process by “showing the flowers exquisiteness beyond the edge of excellence as they fade, wilt, and lose their petals.”

Kim Lordier uses sunflowers to illustrate the transitions in mood and feeling. “Sad Sue” reflects a “state of decline for the sunflower, but the sun still chose to shine on her crown of falling petals.” Kim recalls that the subject called to her to paint her, to honor her gifts of beauty as she transitioned through life.

Inna Cherneykina’s painting “Spring” reflects her “vision of the world, and her emotions brought to life by beautiful flowers.”

still life painting of flowers
Inna Cherneykina, 18 x 24 in., Oil, “Spring”

Several other artists chose to look at the theme of transitions by viewing our landscape as it changes throughout the day and by the season.

Paul Kratter’s painting “Up into the Sky” depicts the beauty of Yosemite in Winter and Linda Mutti focuses on the changing light of the California coast at sunrise and sunset which is seen in her work “California Gold.”

Elizabeth Tolley chose to focus on the time of day in a particular location and see the effects each season brings to the scene.

Linda Mutti, "Afternoon Delight," pastel, 12 x 16 in.
Linda Mutti, “Afternoon Delight,” pastel, 12 x 16 in.

The figurative work of Nancy Seasmons Crookston, Carole Rafferty and Durre Wassem reflect the beauty of transitional moments in our human experience. Nancy’s theme focused on our ability “to dance through every stage of our life.”

Nancy Seamons Crookston, 24 x 36 in., Oil, "Graffiti Grandma"
Nancy Seamons Crookston, 24 x 36 in., Oil, “Graffiti Grandma”

Carole’s work reflects the intimate moments in time where she has spotted people on the street or on the beach in both real and comical situations.

Durre Wassem’s work focused on the spiritual nature of our lives as human beings.

Bill Cone, Michelle Jung, Carolyn Lord, Randy Sexton, and Barbara Tapp explored the effects of time on the changing elements of our landscape and our communities.

Bill explores some of the environmental elements of local creeks and the effects of climate change.

Bill Cone, 18 x 24 in., Pastel, "Shallow Creek"
Bill Cone, 18 x 24 in., Pastel, “Shallow Creek”

Michelle Jung’s work explores the environmental impact on our coastal communities while Randi Sexton focused on the revival and rebirth of Ruth Bancoft’s vision for her gardens over 10-year period.

Carolyn Lord and Barbara Tapp explore the transitory nature of certain areas. Carolyn shows the “corrosive effect of fossil fuels that is evident in global, political strife, degradation of the landscape, and comprised health and fecundity of all organisms.” Her painting “Googie Relic” depicts a mid-20th century gas station, where “low mileage cars would fill up before cruising the endless highways.” Barbara’s work focused on changing environment of the Salinas Valley from its functioning and derelict farms.

Terry Miura and Dug Waggoner took a totally different twist on the theme by interpreting transitions as “applied to the creative process, rather than a depiction of change of time, seasons, etc… Miura states that “an initial study is done in gouache, which becomes a reference and the jumping off point for the next piece, which in turn becomes the catalyst for the one following. In this way, the creative process continues to evolve and the vision transitions from something based on a photo of an actual place, to a much more personal expression of an environment borne of imagination and introspection.”

Terry Miura, 5 x 8 in., Gouache on Paper, "City Clamor"
Terry Miura, 5 x 8 in., Gouache on Paper, “City Clamor”

Dug has also focused on the transitional elements of his painting process which recently “utilizes a textured surface that is enhanced by the pastel as it finds harmonious passages and movement within the composition.”

Brian Blood, Ellen Howard, Richard Lindenberg, and Michael Obermeyer’s work reflected the beauty of the California coast. Brian’s work focuses on the beauty of a specific place and how the changing light during each moment of the day highlights the uniqueness of this site. Ellen and Richard’s work focus on the metaphor of the changing elements and drama on the coast which is reflected in our own human condition.

Michaels’ work reflected his curiosity in finding new ways to paint his iconic scenes from transitional elements of light to the changing activity on the beach.

Michael Obermeryer, 9 x 12 in., Oil, "Cove Overlook"
Michael Obermeryer, 9 x 12 in., Oil, “Cove Overlook”

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