Tohono O’odham Student Art

The Salazar-Ajo Library welcomes students from Tohono O’odham Community College for the school’s first-ever exhibit at the library.

Beginning with an opening reception at 3 p.m. Friday, September 30, the students’ works will hang in the library throughout the month of October.

Students displaying paintings include:

  • Makaye Lewis showing “My Favourite Boot” (acrylic on panel) and “Carmen” (mixed media)
  • Sisco Fraire showing “Saint Graffitti” (acrylic on panel) and “Kaye” (acrylic on stretched canvas)
  • Sage Greely showing “No Father to My Style” (acrylic on panel) and “Rose” (acrylic on stretched canvas), and
  • Dylan Porter showing “Leo” (acrylic on bookbinding board) and “Holy Tattoo” (acrylic on panel).

The four are students in the college’s Painting I class, a Visual Art + Design’s associate of fine arts core class requirement. They are under the direction of Kimberley Lund, PhD.

Featured Artist — Diane Carnright

Diane Carnright is the featured artist this month at Ajo’s Art Under the Arches Gallery. The show, along with refreshments, opens Thursday March 4 at 5:30 pm. It runs to the end of March.

Redrawing Borders in Ajo

Redrawing Borders generated much interest and attention when it opened March 18.

This is one of the pieces that caught my eye as I entered the Plaza Gallery. It tells the ongoing story of a backpack (mochila) found by a hiker on the desert near Organ Pipe National Monument. (Click photo for a larger view.)

George Strasburger, Carlos Encinas and Diane Kahlo are among the artists featured in this show which runs into April.

Studio Tours

Several artists opened their homes and studios March 22 during the Sonoran Shindig. I really enjoy seeing artists in their work spaces — you can almost feel the creativity and color in the air.

I visited Claire Bistline and Terry Gonzales during the tour. They are currently having a sale on their collective works — kind of like spring cleaning to make way for the new work they are beginning. 🙂

 

The Lizards are Loose

If you’ve driven Highway 85 through Ajo in the last couple of days, you’ll have noticed a pair of colorful lizards gracing a newly painted building.

These critters — created and painted by local artists Sherry and John Fritschle — are part of a program to add eye-catching art to the town. They unveiled their work at a recent meeting of the Desert Artist Guild. You’ll spot the brown lizard as you’re heading north. The turquoise version is visible in both directions.

This is part of the Ajo Rocks! beautification project spearheaded by director Freeman Fry. Rumor has it that more art will be highlighting a wall near you soon. 🙂

Local artist Pilar Hanson designed these great new signs and fellow artist Mike (Lonewolf) Baker painted them. A great way to promote stores and events in the Ajo Plaza.

New signs

Thanks to all who are lending their talents to make Ajo so bright and colorful!

Art Under the Arches

Last week’s Second Saturday was extra special with the addition of many new artists showcasing their work.

Although artists have always been a part of Second Saturday, Art Under the Arches brought out many artists who hadn’t shown their work here before. They set up their displays on both sides of the Plaza and on the grass.

We hope to see some of these artists back for 4th Saturday, February 23, when the Farmers’ Market folks will be back with more delicious produce.

Gibson Artists Show

Eight artists who live in the Gibson area of Ajo are preparing for their show at the Ajo Library. The show runs February 1 to 28th. The reception is Saturday February 8 at 1:30 in the library. Everyone is welcome. 

Rich Davis - RavenRich Davis writes: “Ravens have held a special significance for people down through the ages. Representing both wisdom, evil and sometimes playfulness, they can appear at times to be quite vain.  This is my attempt to portray the vanity in a playful way in a mystical setting.  We live in Ajo, Eastern Washington State and SE Alaska, all places where the Raven is ever-present and important to the atmosphere of the area.  Capturing “Raven’s” essence presents wonderful challenges to the artist.”

Faye Gustafson "Open Seas"

“Open Seas” by Faye Gustafson features RMS Aquitania.

Faye writes: “At least two people in Ajo traveled to North America on the Aquitania in the mid-to-late 1940s.”

You can read more of this ship’s fascinating history here.

Other artists featured in the show include:

Rene CloutierRene’s photographs have hung in exhibitions in the US, Mexico and Canada, and he has taught photography classes and presented travelogues in all three countries. His photographs for this show are of a recent trip to New York.

Wendee Cloutier. Wendee writes: “My passion for being on the move, seeing new landscapes and meeting people from all over the world lends itself to capturing the moments that inspire me to enjoy when I stop to rest. I do love to photograph nature but the images I am presenting at this show are a musical performer in Central Park in New York City plus unique eaves troughs and chimneys in Europe.”

John Cooper. Local photographs that illustrate his enjoyment of his surroundings in Ajo with floral, still life and landscape studies.

Lynn Cooper. Lynn is exhibiting local watercolor/sumi scenes portraying whimsical views of flora, fauna and life in Ajo.

Works by Jack Tavenner and Claire Bistline will also appear in the show. 

DAG Juried Show & Sale

The Desert Artist Guild’s 5th Annual Show & Sale opened last Friday evening to a full house — and what an evening it was!

Planning for the show began last October and the work definitely paid off. Artists entered more than 40 pieces of work. This year we invited two jurors to evaluate the work, Leia Maahs from the Tucson Pima Arts Council and Marla Ettenberg, from Ajo. They did a wonderful job and provided artists with written feedback on their submissions.

Several artists volunteered to lay out the show. Show chairperson Jolene Northup and husband Ed hung the pieces. Wendee Cloutier and one of her granddaughters handed out invitations to people at IGA on Friday afternoon.

The opening drew a huge crowd and the Plaza Gallery was filled to capacity. Lots of fun for all!

One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of the awards. Jim Reiman, President of the Ajo Council for the Fine Arts, presented the President’s Award to Jolene Northup for her fiber/acrylic piece “Pink Cliffs on Spruce Sound”.

People’s Choice, chosen by people at the opening, went to Val Uschuk for her piece “Sunbather.” Jurors’ Honorable mention went to two artists, Jacqueline Andes, for her painting “Buck Jones” and Robert Sorrels, for his photograph “Forgotten Dead.” Best of Show, chosen by the jurors, went to Jovita Wallace for her painting “Base Vibration.”

Door prizes, also won that evening, were donated by Rich Davis (an oil painting titled “Hat Mountain”) and a hand-dyed, handwoven scarf by Jolene Northup. The Ajo Council for the Fine Arts also donated 2 tickets to the upcoming performance by the Tucson Symphony Orchestra in Ajo on February 19.

People’s Choice Award

The annual Federated Church Art Show sponsored by ACFA/DAG was held on Saturday, Dec. 14 at the La Mina entrance to the Federated Church just off the Plaza.

Diane Carnright won the “People’s Choice” award for her painting titled ”Desert Home”. Yolanda Aguilar, one of our newest members, was the most successful artist selling three pieces.

                                             Diane Carnright

Paul Chadell and Larry Huff were the lucky winners of the door prizes donated by Diane Carnright and Marilyn Jackson, respectively.

Marilyn Jackson

                                        Marilyn Jackson

The art was beautiful. The heavy local turnout made the artists feel appreciated. The 2014 show will be on Dec 6, next year.

Submitted by Pat Rigdon