10/18/17

Precarious hearts in Almost, Maine - a theater review



The beauty of the B8 Theater right here in Concord is not only its intimate space and commitment to community – it’s also about a wonderful collision of visual and performing arts. Each production includes a new collection of work from Bay Area artists, curated by Grace Teo Arts Management.
 

This month, much of the featured work comes from two Concord Art Association members - Joani Share and LorriMarie Jenkins. The art is always chosen as a companion to the play’s theme. This latest group of whimsical collage and creative mixed media work is titled Precarious heARTS - and once you see the play, you’ll appreciate the art even more - and it's all for sale!



Almost, Maine opens on a sparsely appointed stage – just a stark, winter white backdrop with a bench and a few fluffs of snow. This first scene with a young woman and her boyfriend is very quiet and slow, but after a few moments, I found myself acutely tuned in to them. I felt each character’s shyness and sense of longing. I felt the chill in the air and the anticipation in their voices. It sets the tone for the rest of the show. I think I like these types of plays the best – where less is more.

John Cariani premiered Almost, Maine in 2004 with critical acclaim and it ran off-broadway for a short time in 2006. It's a collection of short, comedic vignettes about lots of different people who all live in this strange little town. They mostly seem to know each other in some way, but their acquaintances are not terribly integral to their situations.

Each somewhat surreal story is about love and romance – both the humor and the heartbreak. The characters are a bit quirky and some of the circumstances require suspension of disbelief. But there are plenty of giggles and tender moments throughout, which makes the weirdness even more worthwhile. Each of the four actors who play multiple roles deserve huge kudos for making me forget who they were just a few minutes ago.

From neighbors in the laundry room to lovers in the living room, each duo seems to struggle a bit with showing each other (and us) their true colors. Every scene deals with some kind of emptiness or unwanted baggage that comes part and parcel in relationships - both old and new. Then the stories end with these serendipitous moments that make you believe love can truly take you anywhere you want to go. Still, their lives aren't perfect. Almost...but not quite.

The final scene picks up where the first scene left off and it quite literally brings everything full circle. Almost, Maine is something you can enjoy with a date, a spouse, your folks or your friends. Visit B8Theater.org for dates and tickets.

9/20/17

Plein air painting in Sonoma

 

What a beautiful day in Sonoma at Cline Cellars! Eleven of our members painted, sketched and took photos of the beautiful grounds. We picnicked, we talked art supplies, we laughed and were grateful for the beauty surrounding us.

October 17th will be our last plein air excursion for the year - join us in San Francisco at the Japanese Tea Gardens! Click our Activities page for details.





8/30/17

September guest artist - Paulette Lagana

concord art association paulette lagana

Join us for our next meeting at the Concord Library on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 (1-3pm). Bring your latest work for our monthly mini art show!

Paulette Lagana is our guest artist whose art in watercolor, acrylic, colored pencil and mixed media is on display at the Delta Gallery in Brentwood, the Blackhawk Gallery in Danville, as well as several other art centers in the East Bay. Paulette is a certified instructor of a technique called "Pocket Sketching" that was created by Kath Macaulay.

Pocket Sketching is a portable, compact, quick sketching technique, ideal for travel. Using a water-soluble pen and watercolor paints, everything fits into a fanny pack so you can create a memory on the go. No experience needed - with Pocket Sketching, the world becomes your studio!

"I’m inspired by my life’s adventures, by the seasons, by my own sense of wonder and whimsy, and by being open to the stimulation of my surroundings. For me, painting was a secret place in my heart that I was afraid to enter for most of my life. Then in 2000, I found a teacher and my life changed with the tip of a brush. Painting is the place where I find endless possibilities to see the world and to express myself."


8/8/17

Our fall schedule is here - take an art class with us!

i heart art studio pleasant hill california

We are thrilled to announce a brand new partnership with the I Heart Art studio in Pleasant Hill!

The studio owners, Abby and Amy, have created a wonderful space for their art programs for kids and adults. CAA will rent their studio two nights a week for our own art and craft classes that are geared for adults of all skill levels. Try something new just for the FUN of it!

We have a fantastic line-up of affordable and creative one-night classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays this fall, taught by some super talented local artists. You're going to want to sign up for absolutely everything!

The studio address is 15 Vivian Drive, right off Contra Costa Blvd. (next to Jack in the Box).

Advance registration and payment is required.  Each class will have a minimum requirement to avoid cancellation, so sign up early.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE VIA PAYPAL.

Each class you select requires a separate PayPal transaction. You can also mail a check to CAA (PO Box 641, Concord 94522), or pay in person at a meeting or other CAA event.

Here's our schedule at a glance - visit our Classes page for details and registration!

Tuesday 9/5:  Shading Abstract Forms with Colored Pencils - Amy Eikner

Thursday 9/7:  Painting Handmade Soap - Deena Sheranko

Tuesday 9/12:  Mixed Media Bookmaking - Joani Share

Thursday 9/14:  Monoprinting with a Gel Plate - Michaele Ignon

Tuesday 9/19:  Make a Halloween Wreath - Liz Roberts

Thursday 9/21:  DIY Bath Bombs - Deena Sheranko

Tuesday 9/26:  Paper Mache Sculpture - Amy Eikner

Thursday 9/28:  Gestural Sculpture with Foil - Manon Jodoin

Thursday 10/5:  Pocket Sketching 1 - Paulette Lagana

Thursday 10/12:  Pocket Sketching 2 - Paulette Lagana

Tuesday 10/17:  Creating Textures with Watercolor - Manon Jodoin

Thursday 10/19:  Stamping Fun - Handmade Greeting Cards - Liz Roberts

Tuesday 10/24:  The Art of Social Media for Self-Promotion (for artists) - Lisa Fulmer

Thursday 10/26:  Printing Your Own Collage Papers - Michaele Ignon



7/27/17

August guest artist - LorriMarie Jenkins

lorrimarie jenkins collage art

Join us on Saturday, August 12th (1-3pm) at the Concord Library for a super fun, hands-on demo with Lorrie Marie Jenkins.

LorriMarie and her husband love to travel - she says she would go crazy if she couldn't create some type of mixed media art during her time away. So she developed a "traveling collage" kit that she can play with anytime, anywhere.

lorrimarie jenkins small collage art

With magazine pages, pre-cut images, gel pens and glue sticks, she will show us how to compose interesting collages on small substrates - all supplies will be furnished, so come have some creative summer fun with us. Everyone is welcome - see you there!


7/8/17

Come to our Ice Cream Social!

CAA ice cream social flyer
Click here to download and print!

Buy yourself some ice cream and support your local arts!

Join us on Wednesday evening, July 12th at Baskin Robbins in downtown Concord for an ice cream social.

Download and print the above flyer and present it to our friends at Baskin Robbins any time between 5pm and 7pm when you're ready to buy your ice cream. 

They will donate a portion of your purchase to the Concord Art Association, which goes toward our fundraising efforts to open a nonprofit community art center and co-op art gallery.

Bring your ice cream over to the fountain in Salvio Pacheco Square. Several artists will be painting, sketching and snapping creative photos while we're there. Everyone is welcome!

7/3/17

"New Works" Summer Show at aRt Cottage

concord art association summer show 2017

New Works Summer Show
The Latest & Greatest from CAA Members
July 5-28, 2017 

aRt Cottage - 2238 Mt. Diablo St. Concord
Tuesdays through Fridays (11am-5pm) & Saturdays (1-5pm)

Saturday, July 15   1-4pm
Wine & Cheese Artist Reception

Over 50 works of art from 18 member artists are on display for the month of July in our favorite little local historic farmhouse, aRt Cottage

Paintings, photography, handmade gifts, prints and greeting cards - landscapes, flowers, people abstract and digital - there is something for everyone. 

Look around for the love of art, buy a gift for someone special, or treat yourself to something new!

Join us at the Artist Reception for live music, a glass of wine and creative conversation.

concord art association
CLICK HERE to download a flyer!

Participating artists include Amy Eikner, Anamilena Ayala, Cathy McNutt, Catherine Hensiek, Julie Limberg, Kathy Robinson, Laurie Mansur, Lisa Fulmer, Michelle Mattea, Monica Meza, Pat Calabro, Pat Viera, Phyllis Brady, Renaye Johnson, Sandi Sherwood, Sandy Leonard, Sharon Petersen, Stella Advani and Yumiko Nishizawa.

6/7/17

Plein air painting and sketching at St. Mary's College

concord art association plein air painting

It was a bit cloudy and chilly, but our group of artists enjoyed painting and sketching on the St. Mary's College campus in Moraga. Here are some works in progress...check the Activities page here on the blog and join us at one of our next plein air excursions.

concord art association plein air painting trip



5/22/17

May Mini Art Show

concord art association hensiek
1st Place - ATC Box by Catherine Hensiek (mixed media)

concord art association McBride
2nd Place - Freshly Picked for You by Betty McBride (watercolor)

concord art association McNutt
3rd Place - View from Carquinez Strait Drive  (acrylic)

concord art association Crabtree
Untitled by Mary Frances Crabtree  (oil)

concord art association Eikner
For the Love of Trees by Amy Eikner  (acrylic)

concord art association Fulmer
The Abyss by Lisa Fulmer  (acrylic)

5/4/17

April Mini Art Show

cathy mcnutt concord art association
1st Place:  Crocket Street by Cathy McNutt  (acrylic)

sharon petersen concord art association
2nd Place:  Tulip Magnolia by Sharon Petersen  (watercolor)

lisa fulmer concord art association
3rd Place:  Moonlit Path by Lisa Fulmer  (acrylic)

pat calabro concord art association
In Progress by Pat Calabro  (acrylic)

renaye johnson concord art association
Jess and Chuck's Garden by Renaye Johnson  (acrylic)

karen nakkerud concord art association
Glacier Stream by Karen Nakkerud  (oil)

5/2/17

May meeting with Mark Jezierny this Saturday!

mark jezierny painting port costa

We're meeting on a Saturday in May - not Tuesday! Join us on Saturday, May 6th at the Concord Library (1-3pm) for our general meeting - the public is welcome.

Mark Jezierny will demonstrate oil painting techniques - he's a crowd favorite! Mark received a BA in Liberal Arts from Saint Mary’s College, then got his Masters of Fine Arts Degree in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute.

"Mark paints primarily in acrylics or oils on canvas. His paintings of Northern California landscapes, buildings and industrial scenes are done with both brush and/or palette knife. He creates an impressionistic style with an approach that is unconventional yet boldly realistic. He uses color to convey mood, atmosphere and perspective with an energy that depicts the overall spirit of the subject matter. Texture and shading are effectively used to emphasize the form, density and richness of natural and man made objects."  —Walter Mast, artist

mark jezierny mt diablo painting

Mark teaches for the Mount Diablo Adult Education program and he offers small group plein air painting classes, as well as private art lessons. 

4/30/17

If you missed our Spring Art Show...

Top row:  Pat Viera, Luciano Roque, Caroline Gomes
Middle row:  Manon Jodoin, Ambrozya Dae, Liz Roberts
Bottom row:  Rashmi Rajesh, Donna Langner & Deena Sheranko, Laurie Mansur

...then you missed a lot! Seventeen artists had work to sell - original art, prints, cards, handmade crafts and more. It was a perfect day to gaze at beautiful art and shop for unique gifts and home décor.

Clockwise from top left: Luciano Roque, Pat Viera, Rashmi Rajesh, Manon Jodoin, John Nicolini

Several of our artists also donated their work for our prize drawings - proceeds go to our fundraising efforts to open a nonprofit community art center and artists' co-op gallery. We'd are so grateful for the generosity of these artists above, as well as Catherine & Bill Hensiek, Cathy Hanson, and the Bridges Salon.

4/14/17

Thanks to all the pasta lovers!

concord art association

Nearly 60 of us basked together in the warm glow of The Old Spaghetti Factory's private dining room in downtown Concord. We drank wine, ate lotsa pasta and shared our collective love of the growing arts scene here. Thanks to everyone who came out to support - this fundraiser got us even closer to our goal so we can open a nonprofit community art center and artists' co-op gallery soon!

concord art association pasta feed

concord art association fundraiser

4/10/17

Fish prints!

fish prints concord art association
CAA members try fish printing

Now who doesn't love a good fish printing party? At our April meeting, Ronna Leon shared loads of great information about all the different types of printmaking - her knowledge is very inspiring.

ronna leon concord art association


ronna leon printmaking
Ronna's sample plates and prints
After Ronna's presentation, she brought out her school of silicone fishies and we got to play. After brushing each fish with acrylic inks and paints, we pressed thin paper on top to make a print.

fish prints concord art association


4/6/17

April meeting - printmaking with Ronna Leon


Our guest artist for the meeting on April 11th is Ronna Leon, who currently runs the printmaking workshop for Arts Benicia. She teaches etching, collagraphy, woodblock and monotype printing, as well as photo transfer and other mixed media techniques. Ronna has worked as a printmaker since the 1970’s and her work has appeared in numerous small shows both in the US and abroad.

In her presentation on Fine Art Printmaking, she'll share examples of many of the forms modern fine art prints take, as well as the plates and tools used to make them. After her lecture, you can try your hand at creating a small gel plate print.

CAA members and the public are welcome - join us at the Concord Library on Tuesday, April 11th at 1pm. Bring your latest work to display in our mini art show - and if you have surplus art/craft supplies you'd like to donate (new or gently used) for our artist flea market fundraising, bring those along too!