September 27, 2008

Review: Racine Art Guild's annual Invitation Show

Carol Madsen - "Florida Madsen"

By Nick Cibrario, author & artist

The public is invited to attend the Racine Art Guild's annual Invitational Show on Saturday, Sept. 27, at The Avenue Frame Shop, 402 Main Street in Racine, Wisconsin. The gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the event. The reception is 1 to 3 p.m.

Let's begin our tour with Dee Dee Dumont's painting , "Northwester Comin'. " Her dramatic seascape was created along the shore of Lake Michigan in Kenosha after a storm. A band of glowing sunlight separates the sky from the lake. A ponderous bearded fisherman holding a net and wearing a heavy coat gazes upon the turbulent tide as it crashes against the gray rocks, the breakwater, and the boathouse. Dumont's subject complements Pablo Picasso's statement, "Art washes away from the soul, the dust of everyday life."

Jerry Belland - "Angel in the Tree"

Next is Marie Skowronski's charming painting, "Dusk." Her acrylic was created from a photograph taken in Shawano, Wisconsin. She said, "While sitting in a restaurant overlooking the small lake, my husband and I were looking at the geese. People would buy corn and throw it to them. Some of the geese are watching and waiting; others are stretching their necks eager to eat." Skowronski's geese stand in the rays of the setting sun as darkness embraces the background.

Adele Wheeler used pastels for her spring floral landscape, "Back to the Future." She said, "The sketches were done while sitting inside a car parked on the shoulder of the road. The setting is the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad tracks, with a field of gorgeous flowers reflected in the side mirror. My painting is dedicated to my grandfather, an engineer for 45 years on the Santa Fe Railroad."

While travelling from Duluth to Canada, Pat Wiskerchen photographed numerous rivers and waterfalls from which she painted "Temperance River." She said, "I have an affinity for birch trees. To me they represent purity and grace. I even brought one home from Finland, Minnesota and planted it in my yard."

Nancy Greenebaum - "Harvest Gold"

Let's take time to admire Janet Mrazek's original illustrations for a children's book, "Jasmine's Courage." Her sister, Claudia Kalinoski, wrote the story about her cat. When Jasmine was a stray kitten, she experienced a single act of courage that changed her life forever. Mrazek used felt tip markers and oil pastel crayons to make the illustrations. She was influenced by Kevin Henkes, the winner of the 2005 Caldecott Award.

John Falk studied Art History last spring at Parkside, which included the Medieval Period. His skillfully constructed composition, "The Traveler," suggests a pilgrim from Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales," heading toward the cathedral. Falk's watercolor depicts the traveler holding a staff. He wears a leather hat, scarf, and cloak in preparation for his arduous spiritual journey. This painting is a study using Gary A. Lippincott's technique and subject.

Mary Ann Logic says she's "an expressionist interested in depicting emotion in her work." She was influenced by the German printmaker Kothe Killwitz. Her print "Touched by the Hand of Compassion…" deals with a lost child sitting near a busy city street. A compassionate hand descends and offers help to the abandoned boy. "My picture is an original, hand carved, pressed and pulled relief linocut that is oil based. It is a response to the Aids crisis in South Africa."

Pat Wiskerchen - "Temperance River"

Janet Hoffman's painting is based upon a photograph sent to her in 1944. Her composition is "a sentimental journey involving a bright young man (I would later marry and live with for 30 years) astride a Harley Davidson motorbike. He's an M.P with a sidearm at the U.S. Army's motor pool in Manila, Philippines."

The subject of Sandra Nowicki's "Spirit Horse" is a leaping mustang, outlined in blue acrylic on a diamond shaped collage. It is splashed with turquoise, yellow, and rose paint. She wove layers of yarn embedded in her own handmade paper. Strings of beads and feathers complete the Native American motif. Nowicki's equestrian image is modeled after the spirited horses on her farm in Kenosha County.

Phyllis Weber's "Untitled "landscape was influenced by Andrew Wyeth. She said, "I have always loved the North Woods, where I spent as much time as possible when I was younger. The woods make me want to sit and reflect on God, who made this beautiful and restful place. "

David Gaura & Candice Hoffman - "Welcome" - sculputure

The focal point of Ellen Cardwell's whimsical watercolor, "Anglican Communion," is the vicar, welcoming his congregation to the Eucharistic Service in a pink stucco church on Harbor Island in the British West Indies. Cardwell said, "I was enchanted during my painting workshop by the local ladies and their colorful outfits. The dogs, cats, roosters, and children roam freely on the terraced lawn while well dressed families ascend the stairs for Sunday worship. This study was done in plein air."

Thanks for joining us. Come again during Party on the Pavement on Oct. 4.

Kate Proeber- Garden Girls I -Glenda


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