Stripey Rocks and Cows

Yesterday was magic.

In truth, I’ve never happened upon a day in Ireland that hasn’t been magic, but the point is that Yesterday was MAGIC. And not only was it MAGIC, but it was MAGIC over and over again.

“What would you like to see?”, asked Olive. “Stripey Rocks and Cows, Please!”, I said all atwitter. There was a slight pause and a bit of a smile and then, “Well okay!”.

It started with the rocks — a mystical evening just beginning to turn, but bright enough to see a glow everywhere (because … IRELAND!”) And suddenly they were everywhere.

Plus a boot.

And then of course, the rest of the story ….

(Press to Play)

Well hello there lovelies!!!!! You made my day!

Becoming, Friday, April 28, 5:00 – 7:00 PM at Olive Stack Gallery, Listowel, Ireland

Inspired by a month-long artist residency graciously provided by Olive Stack Gallery, Listowel, Ireland, Day 27

Call to Artists: Contemporary Mosaic Art 2010

It’s that time again! Ciel Gallery is pleased to announce a Call to Artists for the 2010 edition of Contemporary Mosaic Art, an international juried exhibition celebrating the scope and artistry of mosaic art created today. A full prospectus and entry form is located at, or you may contact me for an email version. Pictured above is last year’s winner, The Visit, by Kathy Thaden, Colorado. Entry Deadline is Monday, August 9.

A Very Unusual Day

Okay, so it’s Tuesday, and clearly a twofer is indicated. But I ask you, where does it end?

Last night my brother and I sat on the porch looking at stars. I was thrilled to pick out my first red star, Antares, which we easily identified with a handy app on his IPad. Way cool. Making my way around some rocking chairs to approach the railing, both feet caught on a large — very large — wooden door stop attached at an angle on the porch floor. Over I keeled, creating a perfect arc and landing on my face. Banged, scraped, egg-knotted, and bleeding lightly, I clamored up over a rocker and continued the star search, then crawled into bed and emailed Vernon about my starry night.

This morning I happened upon Emma Biggs’ fabulous blog . . . detailing a nearly identical fall, sadly with a great deal more damage than mine (heal quickly Emma!). Then an email from Vernon, startled that the very next communication in his morning queue after my star tale is a slideshow on stars and the Hubble telescope. I then check Facebook. Within my first eight status updates, two mention heading out to the garden, and two more mention picking up a car from the repair shop. Okay, this is getting fun. More fun for me than for Vernon, who is headed off for TWO dental appointments.

I take a long walk on the beach, mulling over whether to turn my eyes upward or toward the sand, composing a few humorous lines about jellyfish carcasses vs the danger of overhead seagulls.

On my way to the farm stand before lunch, I wonder about the tradition of intuitive naming in Native American and Buddhist traditions — at that moment the radio announcer utters the word “Buddhism.”

Back on the beach, I’m getting excited about my thoughts manifesting, and settle back in my chair with closed eyes to follow where my mind leads. I feel a heavy drop of “rain” splash on my right shoulder, and open my eyes to see that the “rain” is white. Okay, 55 years, and I’ve never once been shit on by a seagull, or any bird for that matter, and suddenly it happens less than an hour after I think it?

Now of course I’m wondering why I can’t manifest an art sale or commission . . . when my cell phone rings. It’s a writer out of Minnesota, and she wants to interview me for an article on artists in the SouthEast . . . .

I’m excited about tomorrow.

Oh, and by the way, the dog above is a freebie. I saw him on my beach walk and liked the way he sat on his private island in the sun. I haven’t found the other half of his story yet, but it won’t surprise me.

Call to Mosaic Artists: Flights of Fancy

Show us your Whimsy! Bees’ knees, purple trees, humongous nests, the witch of the west, broken crockery birds or a chair made of herbs — go mythical, magical, fanciful and fabulous to give your imagination free reign on 2-D or sculptural pieces that defy the humdrum. Art in any medium, style or size, will be considered. Exhibited work is not limited to mosaic but, as always, mosaic art is especially welcome.

For a full prospectus, go here and click on Flights of Fancy. Digital submission deadline March 1. International Juried Exhibition runs April 2 – May 21, 2010 with receptions Friday, April 2 and Friday, May 7 at Ciel Gallery, Charlotte, NC.

Shown above, Jocasta, by Australian Artist Marian Shapiro, from her series of Forbidden Fruits.

Tickle our fancy. Seven weeks left to pull out the stops and splash a little whimsy across these winter blahs.

Winter Whites at Ciel Gallery

Kaye Iverson, Aspens in Winter

Kaye Iverson, Aspens in Winter

October 5 is the deadline for Ciel Gallery’s November/December juried exhibition, Winter Whites. With entries already in from Australia, Cyprus, Monaco, Canada, and the US, this show promises to rival our current Contemporary Mosaic Art 2009 in its international-ness. Primarily fine art mosaic, the exhibition will also feature textiles, watercolor, acrylic and photography. For a full prospectus, go here.

I’m avalanche-ally excited about this show. Last year’s Simply Red was a bonfire-al success. The artists loved creating the heat and visitors basked in it. This year we’ll put the chill on. With an almost total absence of color, Winter Whites will be a textural banquet, and a deliciously apt follow-up to our neighbor Charlotte Art League’s October exhibit, Art Beyond Sight — that which tickles the four less used senses rather than the rods and cones of our retinas.

I am an unabashed color slut, but these Winter Whites are tickling my fancies big time.

Submit; Partake; Revel; Glean; Go Forth.

Art: Not (Just) a Pretty Picture

Ciel Gallery’s exhibition entitled The War Against Peace presents the responses of artists across the nation as they ponder the question of why we continue to cry for peace and simultaneously continue to wage war. Best of Show winner Janet Kozachek, whose Fallen Floyd is pictured above, illustrates the emotional and physical torture of war in stone and handmade ceramic. Phil Fung‘s War and Peace depicts a hundred or so maniacal Continue reading

Mosaic Howl

Okay, random things first. In between my too-many pursuits, I finally finished Howl, my mosaic protest piece, just in time for the opening of The War Against Peace Exhibition at Ciel Gallery. I chose to work this piece in a folk-art style, because it is so often the “child” within us that reacts most instinctively to the atrocities around us. The image depicts a Peace Angel howling in anguish over the current state of Man and Earth. Alphabet Millefiori spell out her howls as she flies over the land surveying our lives below. This piece uses vitreous, smalti, millefiori, glass beads, and shell. Click on the image to enlarge and read the messages.

Community Mosaic Project Gluefest 1

The great thing about mosaic artists is that they just never want to put down the nippers. So what starts out as “just finishing this one little section” ends up with you staring zombie-like across a cup of steaming tea while a Dear One utters words that sound oddly like, “What happened to you? You never came to bed last night?” Hence the Premier Gluefest of Charlotte Art League’s Community Mosaic Project was a howling success, Continue reading

Mosaic Maestro Giulio Menossi to Jury Contemporary Mosaic Art

I am such a huge fan of Master Mosaicist Giulio Menossi, that I would consider it the highest honor to be plastered with smalti and embedded into one of his wholly fantastical three-dimensional works, just to have the honor of hanging about in his studio and watching this genius at work. Continue reading

Mosaic Art Deadline August 4

Entries for the Contemporary Mosaic Art Juried Exhibition must be received by digital submission by August 4, 2008. A full prospectus is available here. Questions can be asked and answered here. The exhibition will feature artists working in mosaic from across the globe, both 2-D and 3-D, showcasing a wide variety of materials. Show dates will be September 5 – 26, and will include several receptions. Best of Show Award is $500, sponsored by Artists’ Reception and Cocktail Salon will be held Saturday, September 6, sponsored by More information on Ciel Gallery in Charlotte, North Carolina is available here. Mosaic Art featured on the postcard shown above by (clockwise from upper left) Virginia Gardner: Secrets; Valerie Fuqua: Dangerous Curves; Marian Shapiro (inset): Lolita; Kathleen Jones: Un Moment de Paix, and Pamela Goode: The Happiest House.