Our informal Teams conversations are open to all. These Teams Conversations are on the second Wednesday each month at 7pm. Follow this link to participate. Check in with other sculptors to share latest work, ask questions, and stay connected.
February 2022 newsletter
For many, PNWS and George Heath are synonymous. Twice he has served multiple terms as President. He has been in the driver seat for more than half of our organization’s existence. By rough calculation, I estimate his volunteer contribution is over the 4000 hours. That contribution has been epic.
More significantly, he is the Oracle of PNWS, a walking encyclopedia of our history, bylaws, and our membership. He has a story to go with almost any topic, all told with a smile and grace. He is a connector who thoroughly enjoys making introductions.
In January, our Board honored George with the title of President Emeritus in recognition of his long and selfless contribution to the organization. This is the first time we have awarded this honor. Over lunch at McMenamins Fulton Pub, I shared this news with George. His response was a characteristic big smile and a chuckle. When we all meet again, perhaps an annual picnic or other worthy face-to-face event, we will offer more formal recognition of his contribution.
Before lunch was over, I learned quite a few things about the man and the organization. George explained his first encounter with PNWS was around 2002. He offered a plan to create a website. (He built and maintained that site until last year when we launched our current site.) As things go in an all volunteer organization, one thing quickly led to another. As webmaster, he was also awarded the title of Vice President. By his description, he came to the presidency as did Gerald Ford. It wasn’t planned. Within months, the top spot was open and he was the default successor. He inherited a shopping bag full of receipts and the realization we had not filed tax returns in 3 years. He accepted the situation and fixed it.
When asked about his greatest satisfaction during his tenure, he cited an event at Maryhill Museum in Goldendale, Washington. This was a long weekend of exhibits, demos, collaboration and celebration of creativity. The eastern end of the Columbia Gorge was an excellent backdrop to feature our members, their works, and it provided an entertaining experience for visitors. George also noted the campsite comradery as everyone shared stories in the evenings and “cowboy coffee” over breakfast.
His attention then shifted from past to present. George is currently teaching classes at the Oregon Society of Artists. He’s sharing his monster-making techniques and insights with a crew of kids. A problem-solver by nature and a kid at heart, one can only imagine what one of these sessions must be like. If you have ever seen him at work, you understand how masterful he is at explaining when he has his hands on clay.
The quick smile and humor disguise another side of George. After his recent downsizing to an apartment, he has slowly rebuilt a workspace and began creating art again. We all know him for his monsters and cartoonish characters. But, early in his career, he created a series of anatomically correct, life-like beetles. His observation skills miss nothing. His interest in nature has brought him back to more realistic subjects. His newest fascination is the octopus. Hopefully we will soon see examples of this new direction.
Now that he has time again to explore and experiment with clay, he presumably will also have time for conversation and collaboration. Seeing his imagination at work should be as entertaining as it will be educational. I’ve invited him to my studio and look forward to a day of limitless imagination.
George has officially retired from our Board. He has earned and will always have our respect and appreciation. We should not let him or his knowledge go untapped. He is a treasure and an inspiration. I encourage everyone to seek him out and enjoy the humor, knowledge and insights he has to share.
Active PNWS members are invited to participate in “Creative Collaborations,” our virtual sculpture show. The show will be visible on our website September 1, 2022.
Both collaborators must register. If you don’t have a partner, indicate that below.
- You may include more than one partner in your collaboration.
- You may participate in more than one collaboration.
- You do not have to know what you will create to register. We want to know who is participating at this point.
We will have an online forum available soon where participants can share their discussions, progress and images as projects develop. This will be visible to all members so everyone can see and enjoy the process.
Similar in theme to “Unmatched Pairs” from our group show in 2019 at the Multnomah Art Gallery, pairs of artists will show a piece demonstrating the power of creative collaboration from concept to completion. Additionally, each paired artist will also display one individual piece adjacent to the collaborative piece to give viewers a broader perspective of the interaction of their creative inspiration. Participants will create one collaborative piece, one individual piece, and one sketch for perspective of their collaboration process. Sketches are optional.
This show has no entry fee. No commissions. Non-juried. All sales are directly between artist and buyer. Contact Katie Sallos with questions or requests.
PNWS artists must identify themselves using the Show Application Form. Artists wishing to participate, but who have not found a pairing should also complete the form. The show committee will help match up individual artists.
DETAILS: File format and size requirements will be provided soon.
There is a lot of activity among our members. Here is a sampling of recently completed work and work in progress.
From Robert McWilliams: Crane Dance – This sandhill crane is made from a 60-year-old cedar fence post, a part of which makes the base. The wings are painted aluminum and the legs are steel concrete reinforcing rods. The crane was inspired by a painting by Miami tribe member, Julie Olds, depicting the cecaahkwas (sandhill crane) representing Myaamiaki (Miami People) dancing in the light of the setting sun.
From Carolyn Nelson: These will be part of my upcoming exhibit at Heritage University, Virginia Hislop Gallery, April 3 – 29th, “Conversations with the Wind” paintings and drawings.
From Tony Furtado: This is part of my ceramic orca whale series I’m working on. Sort of a whale separating.
From Craig Dorety: I am using TouchDesigner (a visual programming environment) to sample colors from a digital image in a very specific way. I then use the result to control LEDs in my sculptures.”
From Robert Gigliotti: Just finished Germination, fabricated steel and stainless. Germination, a process essential to life. The outer ring represents the earth. The stainless sphere represents a seed, the upper blades are sprouts and the curved shapes at the bottom the roots.
From Elizabeth Truchon: “Working with organic materials inspires not only my process, but my daily existence.” The sculptures were exhibited in September at an exhibit in Sonoma (Petaluma) sponsored by Petaluma Design Co. at The Watershed. Life Form is organic mixed media, 48x10x18”, Essence is 48x10x10”
From Maria Wickwire: I have two upcoming events. 1) The Birds Invitational show at Smith & Vallee Gallery opens tomorrow. My piece is Samara (Night Talk). It’s the one with an owl on her head.
2) Solo show at Smith & Vallee opens April 2nd. The piece with antlers is Eilidh.
From Russ Ford: I’m finishing up a number of works that will be part of the March exhibit with David Mylan at the Cave. My first foray into an exhibition outside a group show. We have collaborated on a number of pieces-combining metalwork with ceramic.
From Nancy Bocek: This is what I’m working on. Not easy to see at this point. It’s the beginning of a series tentatively titled Freefall. Slab built in black clay. I will use orange color to pull out the figure. I’m expanding on a piece called Freefall in my Covid diary series. In the diary series I begin by opening the clay like a book- or a diary… (i just made that connection!)
Alisa Looney is the featured Artist at Red Chair Gallery
for the month of February.
First Friday Opening
Feb 4th, 5:30 – 8pm
Red Chair Gallery
103 NW Oregon Avenue Bend, Oregon 97703
My friend and fellow sculptor David Mylan and I will be exhibiting our recent work at Art at the Cave gallery in Vancouver during the month of March.
We both work with figurative concepts through very different media.
David creates larger than life welded metal pieces while my work is mostly ceramic. We decided some time ago to do a number of collaborative pieces that are now in the final stages of construction. Melding these very different materials into artworks has been a challenge and a joy.
We hope you can find time to visit this exhibit which opens on first Friday, March 6th and runs through the end of the month. It is especially rewarding to be able to share with fellow sculptors in this lovely venue.
I am reaching out to PNWS members to participate in a fundraiser to support our good friend Claudia Carter in her time of need. Claudia’s leadership position in the black community in Vancouver is legendary. She works with our historical society to present events at the museum, organizes black history month at our library, as well as local NAACP events. She is also a sculptor and big supporter of the arts.
She gave an inspiring interview to Chas Martin last year as a part of International Sculpture Day celebration: https://youtu.be/3FBtAgneOpU
Her need is outlined by her sister below.
As you may or may not be aware, our beloved leader, family member, artisan, historian and friend to so many, Claudia Starr Carter, has been battling terminal Pancreatic Cancer these last few months. Claudia is and has always been a warrior, fighting this battle while leading with strength, love and everlasting compassion. She is now trying an alternative treatment that is not covered by insurance, so her friends and family wanted to reach out to others for help covering this cost.
With that in mind, Claudia’s sculptural piece (“Warrior In Full Headress”) will be given to a donor who wins the sculptural lottery. The names of all donors contributing $25 or more will be placed in a hat and drawn at the end of the donation period, February 7. Any donations of any size, of course, are welcome. Be sure to include your name and contact information. Donations can be sent to Claudia’s sister:
323 E Reserve #5
Vancouver, WA 98661