Monday, March 30, 2015

Paintings at ACCI Gallery, Berkeley

ACCI Gallery In Berkeley, is currently displaying some of my work -  The gallery is looking beautiful, and the new sculpture garden in the back is a lovely asset, especially in balmy spring weather.

From left to right, my gouache painting "Garden Reflection", a small giclee of my gouache painting "Dusk", oil on panel "Planting Oaks" in an antique gilt frame, "Multnomah Falls" in a wonderful Tramp Art frame from about 1900, and a small oil I did of "Maine Rowboats", aesthetically moored at the end of Mount Desert Island when we visited in the Fall of 2013.

I am now on Instagram, as is ACCI, and the gallery posted a picture they took of my rowboat painting, along with many other examples of their exhibited artists' work.  I am attaching a screen shot of the Instagram posting below, but you can also go to Instagram and see more of my artwork at #manopantheart or at #accigallery to see my pieces, and the work of many other artists represented by the gallery.

Display of a group of my paintings at ACCI Gallery, Berkeley

Instagram posting featuring "Maine Rowboats" at ACCI Gallery

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Mount Diablo, oil on canvas

Mount Diablo

In late fall I began a commission to paint Mount Diablo, in central Contra Costa County, for a client and friend who sees this view from her bedroom window in Alamo.  She may be moving to southern California in the next year or so, and wants to "take the view with her".  This is a pretty big painting for me, at 24" x 30", and the huge mountain looms so close to the house that it was a challenge to really get the scale of the thing.  The near foreground was not quite as arboreal as it appears here - the view was filled with her neighbors' houses, driveways, and recycling bins, and when I drove out to do my on-site sketches, clouds covered the top ridge, creating another problem for me.  (A day or two later the sky cleared and the client sent me a photograph of the top of the mountain so I could fill in the blank in my drawings...)

I decided that to make the mountain look Really Big, it needed to be bathed in late afternoon sunlight, the clouds above it retreating in perspective, and the foreground had to be in deeper shadow to make the composition more dramatic. I eliminated the houses between me and the closest foothills (while keeping a few of their trees and shrubs) to keep the view pristine and powerful.

All of this is a demonstration of how artists can paint the truth without necessarily painting exactly what they see!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

New Painting Projects at Year's End

The White Stag

As Thanksgiving approaches, here is my magical White Stag to usher in the holidays!  He's painted in gouache on heavy rag paper, and is now sold and living in a new home, but happily he's still available in the form of greeting cards and giclee prints. Greeting cards in this design, as well as many others based on my paintings, including my extensive selection of Christmas cards, are now available at ACCI Gallery in Berkeley, Books Inc, Alameda, and Payn's Stationery on Solano Avenue in Berkeley.

Some of my framed paintings and giclees now exhibited at ACCI Gallery, Berkeley

I continue to be an exhibiting artist member of ACCI Gallery in Berkeley, and this month they have several of my paintings displayed, including my piece, "Planting Oaks", in the front window! Framed in an antique gilded frame, it is a bird's eye view of a crow in a California live oak, with an oak savannah landscape far below, painted in oil on museum board. The crow is based on a real crow that visited my back garden more than once in late summer, each time with an acorn in its beak.  He or she lingered long enough for me to study his plumage and stance, and the acorn too, and this painting was the result. It's a storybook interpretation of the crow I saw, but is also based on a real bird and real behavior, which charmed and inspired me.

Planting Oaks

ACCI Gallery,  on Shattuck Avenue in Berkeley

"Planting Oaks" in the front window of the gallery

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Lisa at the Lafayette Gallery "Artist Market" August 16th

I will be participating in the outdoor August “Artist Market” in the historic – and beautiful - Forge Courtyard next to the Lafayette Art Gallery, for one day on Saturday, August 16th from 11 am to 5 pm.  On display will be a selection of my smaller and a few larger framed paintings in oil and gouache, fine prints and giclees, and lots of my greeting cards. The Artist Market is right next to the gallery, and there will be many other artists displaying their work too, in a variety of media. 

For more information, contact the Lafayette Gallery (note new location)
3420 Mt. Diablo Boulevard, Lafayette, CA  94549

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Lisa at East Bay Open Studios 2014

My space at the Jack London Square Market Hall for East Bay Open Studios, in early June, with all of my stuff around me, from framed paintings, to giclee prints, to greeting cards. Thanks everybody for my successful two weekends, and a HUGE thanks to my family - who packed greeting cards, carried heavy stuff hither and yon, helped with setup and breakdown, and entertained the crowds with music and song!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

2014 East Bay Open Studios Coming Soon!

We're off and running - over 400 artists will be opening their studios the first two weekends in June during East Bay Open Studios, and I will be exhibiting my work with over 50 participating artists at the Jack London Market Hall at Jack London Square, right on the waterfront.  Check out the ProArts online gallery of all of the other artists participating in Open Studios too.  (I'm listed under Haderlie Baker, artist # 215 in the directory).  You can see examples of some of my new work on my directory page, and also check out all the other 400-plus artists!

The official Open Studios happens on the first two weekends of June (June 7-8, and June 14-15) from 11a.m. to 6 p.m. both weekends.  This year there's an added bonus:  First Friday is June 6th, and the Market Hall is hosting "Jack's Night Market" with food, music, AND all of us artists too, in a special sneak preview of Open Studios from 6-10 pm that Friday night.

Friday, April 25, 2014

This is a story about Caspar David Friedrich and me

Caspar David Friedrich (1774-1840) was a German Romantic painter who inspired many later artists, including those of the American Hudson River School, the New England Luminists, and lots of Russian painters. (His work also, by the way, was the inspiration for the painted mountain backdrops of the recent movie "The Grand Budapest Hotel"!)  A year or two ago I saw a reproduction of his ink wash and pencil drawing called Owl on a Grave, from 1837.  It's actually rather unsettling, but certainly captures the imagination, and seems to validate the view that Friedrich's work is full of melancholy and loneliness.  BUT - it is also deeply romantic, in the original sense of the word, i.e., "validating intense emotion as an authentic source of aesthetic experience...especially that which is experienced in confronting the sublimity of untamed nature and its picturesque qualities" (Wikipedia).

Caspar David Friedrich:  Owl on a Grave

OK, now on to me!  I kept thinking about Friedrich, and when we were in Maine last October I was struck by the number of tiny weathered graveyards all over the state, many right next to the road between the farms or houses, and some in old town centers next to churches. Many date from the Civil War, which seems like it took place a long way from Maine, but of course it didn't. These little cemeteries are now peaceful old places, a bit melancholy to be sure, but truly meditative and romantic (see definition above). I especially liked the small Meeting House Cemetery right in the middle of Bar Harbor, on Mount Desert Island. I read all of the inscriptions that were still legible, and found one gravestone that I thought was especially evocative - on the grave of Captain Stephen Higgins, who died in 1862, aged 58 years. It had a lovely gothic arch, and was a bit distressed with a crack across the stone, deeply stained by hard winters. Carved above his name was a beautiful anchor, which of course refers to his occupation, but is also the symbol of hope.

Very different from Friedrich's German wooden grave marker, but I had in mind a different owl, and a different mood, too...

Captain Higgins' gravestone became my focus, and I imagined it in a slightly more rural setting than Bar Harbor, with a rising moon in the distance and a barn owl perched on the stone, just waking up. I borrowed the twilight palette of the painting from yet another 19th century German artist, Oscar Shultz.  I'm calling it Dusk.

My "owl on a grave" is not frightening at all, but quietly tranquil in its natural habitat, waiting for the dark, to fly. 

Dusk, gouache on rag paper

Framed Dusk
I'm using Dusk for the image on my publicity postcard for East Bay Open Studios in the first two weekends in June.  Come see me and my paintings at the Jack London Market Hall with over 50 other artists (but not Caspar David Friedrich, alas.)