Thursday, January 26, 2017

Roots Up Gallery - Savannah 2017

Roots Up Gallery is just a terrific place.  Up the stairs you go to enter a world of 'rootsy' art, outsider art and other oddling art - all in a lovely Savannah vintage building. Like visiting your favorite eccentric aunt. No auntie, but you'll be pleased to meet the charming Russell or Leslie Lovell, the owner.

I posted about Roots Up last year, when I was lucky enough to get a piece by Reverend Johnny Ace. My husband saw how taken I was with it and got it for me for my birthday. Woo hoo.

Everyday Scenes in Rock & Roll Heaven by Rev. Johnny Ace

This year I fell in love with the oddlings created by Lisa Ocampo, a Savannah artist. I loved this painting of this unique 'couple' and got myself a print of the lovely Wanda and Her Death Heads Moth. Was also excited to see some Howard Finster  - an iconoclast rootsy artist - pieces for sale and work of his grandson, Michael Finster.  

Lisa Ocampo

But most exciting was the mixed-media assemblage by Betty Nathan.  I was especially attracted by the fact that all the components within the piece were totally vintage, but it was not for sale.  I then learned Mz Betty had lived into her late 80's and Roots Up were working with her estate to begin valuing and sharing her work. I considered that because of her lengthy life, Mz Betty could actually have done this piece not with vintage items, but contemporary ones.  Join the Roots Up mailing list to be apprised of when Mz. Betty's work will be available.

Mixed-Media Assemblage by Betty Nathan @ Roots Up Gallery

So Roots Up is a favorite Savannah place.  And I'm totally sure Patsy Kline would appreciate Roots Up too.

Roots Up - Savannah

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

SCAD Art - Savannah 2017

SCAD - Savannah College of Art & Design - pops up all over town.  The SCAD Museum of Art showcases amazing contemporary art.  There is a wonderful courtyard/garden area that features this very cool installation of oversize plastic chairs and sofas, which I found caught my fancy.

Chairs SCAD Museum of Art Courtyard

Garden Party @ SCAD - Savannah

Sofa With Pink @ SCAD - Savannah

The SCAD shop on Bull Street - ShopSCAD - is another place where I like to wander.  It features student and other artists work and artsy fun things and jewelry, and offers an online store.  And being right down the street from our favorite coffee place, Gallery Espresso,  makes it a great place for frequent browsing.

I was quite taken by the huge painting in the window, The Guardian by Alea Hurst, a SCAD student, The painting features an Indonesian mask as the subject's head. I am all about altering heads in both my collage and assemblage - animal heads, appliance heads, musical instrument heads - so this really spoke to me.  Here's my little tip-o-the-hat to The Guardian.  More about Alea below.

Shop SCAD - homage to The Guardian by Alea Hurst

  See Alea Hurst's work at her website  aleahurst,com

Here's a great interview with Alea  at Common Creative about her work and  what drew her to masks.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Savannah! 2017

Savannah is such a favorite city of mine.  It's home to SCAD - Savannah College of Art & Design, and that adds such a vibrant element to the Historic & Midtown districts. In addition to art and creativity, SCAD is involved in preserving buildings, for the school use and more.  An eminently walkable town, it fills my cravings for the urban walk-about vibe,   

We're here longer than other times and that has opened up a lot of creative space for collage.  Like in Cedar Key, I am inspired by the sights I find in our wanderings and all these collages are based on my own photographs. Amplified and altered, of course.  I said to my husband that I'm a regional artist who goes to other regions.

Garden of Lambs - Savannah

Eat Pie - Savannah

I couldn't help but have my own response to the Ascension Parking Only sign.  These vintage characters were perfect for the mood,

Ascension - Savannah

Bradley's Lock & Key was founded in 1893 and is still fixing, unlocking, re-keying and so on. Peering through the windows, the place is chock full of vintage things of all kinds. Bradley's also has a ghost past.  Savannah supposedly is the most haunted city. I loved the sign.

We Fix Anything But A Broken Heart - Savannah

You can check out previous years' Savannah posts by entering Savannah in the blog search box.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

More Cedar Key 2017

Cedar Key is an artsy town. Two galleries, funky colors everywhere, signage, art-ed walls on homes and businesses and lots of found-object gardens. Yes!!

This 'gallery' is a mystery.  An old, unused building right downtown on 2nd Street, which is the main street.  Last year I noticed a few found object sculptures nailed to the wall. This year more, including a painting.  So far I apparently haven't asked the right person, as I have not found out who the artist/s are.


The Dollar General store is a big deal here. 12 miles out of town on Route 24 on the 'mainland' it is the biggest store nearby.  There is the very neat and a bit pricey Market At Cedar Key right in town and a 7-11 type liquor store as well.  But for 'stuff' off to the Dollar General.  I found the donut mug featured in this collage there, A true 'gotta have it' item and for only a buck, why not indulge?

Dollar General Route 24

I love the look of the Blue Desert Cafe, but have yet to eat here.  It's a tiny place. Reviews say the food is good but everything takes a really long time. Those in the know bring a bottle of wine and are happy to hang out.

Blue Desert Cafe - Cedar Key


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Cedar Key 2017 - my 'Old Florida' retreat

Cedar Key is a wonderful little town. an island at the end of Route 24 on the Gulf Coast, an area sometimes called the Nature Coast or the Forgotten Coast. We've made it part of our winter retreat for years now. 

Cedar Key is in Central Florida and the nearest city is Gainesville, an hour or so away.  We always make a day trip to Gainesville to the wonderful Harn Museum of Art, with a stop at the Gainesville Artisans Guild gallery, but mostly our time in Cedar Key is being off the grid by the Gulf and walking around town, which boasts two art galleries - The Island Arts Gallery and  Cedar Key Arts Center and a half dozen restaurants, our favorite hang-out is Steamers

The "Old Florida' architecture. colorful, vintage with a dash of funky and a smidge of chaos, always inspires me. And being 'off the grid' of doing, creates a wide open space for collage.

Breakfast Lunch - Cedar Key

Snake Plant Cottage - Cedar Key

Carts and Truck - Cedar Key

Live Oak Cottage - Cedar Key

The collages use my own photographs, amplified and altered and many of the elements are also from my photographs, extracted and 'amped', others are found images. The octopi are not from my own photographs - lol, but I do like to use octopi - they're always unexpected.

You can see past posts from Cedar Key by just entering Cedar Key in the blog search box.