Gratitude, Mountains and Architecture
View from Kachina Peak summit
Feeling blessed after a quick trip to Taos, New Mexico to do some skiing, see architecture, visit art galleries and recuperate from the New England Winter Blahs. I wish we could have brought them some of our abundant snow, but I still can't complain about the slope conditions in the West.
Though we had planned to hike to the summit of Kachina Peak at Taos Ski Valley we hit a bit of Friday the 13th luck and the new lift to the peak opened! We decided to grab the opportunity and ride some of the first chairs up to territory that was previously only accessible by hiking. Nothing is as rewarding as a good hike up and a long ski down but I was happy to save my energy for hiking other ridges and take advantage of this momentous occasion. We had three very memorable days of skiing at altitudes of over 12,000 feet.
Earthship museum and first structure
Just past the Gorge over the Rio Grande lie Mike Reynolds's Earthships, sustainable dwellings that are completely off the grid. If you get a chance to watch his film "Garbage Wars" or see the structures on "Extreme Homes" you will see how well they are symbiotically engineered. They blend in beautifully with the landscape and generate all their own water and electricity.
Bandelier National Monument
Another example of natural architecture resides at Bandelier National Monument near Los Alamos, NM in the form of the cliff dwellings of Pueblo natives. Many of these caves, created by erosion and a little digging, are long since uninhabited and open to the public. Using traditional style ladders you can climb into some of these cliff caves which take advantage of a Southern exposure and are extremely cozy.
Art in Taos
So many galleries, so little time...After researching some of the galleries in Taos I selected two for an in-depth look at their exhibits and a chat with their owners.
At David Anthony Fine Art
they were featuring Tina Mion, whose artwork focuses on her own death as well as those of celebrities. What I enjoyed most were her drawings that were equal parts assemblage and pastel. Mion created still-life models out of buttons, match sticks and other notions and then captured them in pastel, charcoal, and pencil on board.
Thank you to David and Kent for the wonderful conversation!
Lash Larue's Last Ride, pastel on board, Smithsonian Study 2006, 11 x 14.5 Tina Mion
untitled Fine Art
Several artists were showing at untitled
including Kimberly Webber
, who specializes in female archetypes in large-scale format, and K.C. Tebutt's mandalas that are backlight using a system he calls "breathing light". Both artists use encaustic as their main medium and you can even find some videos of Webber with her bees on youtube.
Vitruvian Man, oil on canvas, Antonio Arellanes
What really draws the eye in at the gallery are the complex paintings of Antonio Arellanes
. Using layers of oils and holographic medium he meticulously arranged the paint with brushes to achieve a dimensionality that shimmers and changes with every angle. The streaks in the painting control how much you see of the under-image at one time and the work slowly unfolds as you move around it.
Vitruvian Man detail, oil on canvas, Antonio Arellanes
Thank you K.C. for taking some time to talk about metaphysical artwork!
Migration: Age Old
With this work I had two clear objectives: first, to suggest the progression of movement and time, and second to take advantage of the natural tones in the materials used, all while keeping with the theme of the Migration series.
Age Old, Encaustic and cotton on birch panel, 25 x 18, Amy Hannum
Much like Alpha, an earlier work in the series, Age Old was constructed in a relatively free-form manner. The objectives had been set but the shape had yet to be discovered. As I layered the strips of cotton saturated in encaustic the shape of the nautilus shell quickly emerged. That initial shape and and its sacred geometry of the golden ratio meshed perfectly with the idea of natural progression of time.
Age Old detail, Encaustic and cotton on birch panel, 25 x 18, Amy Hannum
Movement came into the picture when the nautilus was offset to crawl off the plane and expose the lovely woodgrain of the panel. Keeping the sculptural object off-center met both goals for the project while keeping the piece minimal and free of distractions. Like many of the works in this series a small amount of titanium white was added to the encaustic medium to brighten the hue while maintaining the warm tones inherent in the bees wax and damar resin.
Burlington City Arts
Only until March 20th
Silver Lining, 24 x 24, plaster, pigment and spider web
13 of my larger works, including Silver Lining, will be on exhibit at the Maltex Building until late March and are for sale through Burlington City Arts (BCA).
Maltex Building, 431 Pine Street, Burlington, VT
Tuesdays at the Attic
In the spirit of adventure and collaboration I have begun to hold art forums in my attic in New London, CT. Once a month artists and creative people meet there to talk about art projects and collaborations on large-scale endeavors.
Want to join the fun?
The next meeting is:
Tuesday, March 10
519 Montauk Avenue, New London, CT