Monday, November 30, 2009

and There's Always Mexico

How could I have forgotten? This is a true sign of too much going on all at once. Why do I have all shows converging on the same month, at the end of the year, instead of spread out nicely through out the year? Don't get me wrong dear Art Gods.... I appreciate all the shows. I do!

If you are planning a trip to Mexico please make sure to stop into The Loft Galeria in Puerta Vallarta. I have three figurative pieces there currently that are some of my favorites! Tell John I sent you.

The Loft Galeria Corona 176A, Centro 93800 Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico

Nude Seated, oil on panel, 17" x 14"

Nude Seated, charcoal on vellum, 17" x 14"

Public Restroom, oil on panel, 20" x 30"

Alia Fine Art Newsletter

Since this is such a busy time for me, I thought that I should start a Newsletter to keep us all up on recent events, upcoming exhibitions and workshops. You can view my very first e-Newsletter by clicking on this link.

If you haven't all ready, you can sign up from either here on my blog (see right) or directly from the Newsletter (at the top, in the grey bar you should see 'Subscribe to List'). If you have any trouble feel free to email me your contact info, and I'll be happy to do it manually for you.

I really appreciate all your support and I hope I will get to see you at one of these events soon!

Opening Reception THIS Friday!!

I am very pleased to annonuce that I will be exhibiting the paintings below as one of VAE's Exchange Gallery Artists for the month of December, along with fellow artists Kathy Brancato, Janet Harrell, Mary Ann Scherr and Sean Byrne.

Please join us for the Opening Reception this Friday, December 4, from 6-9pm. The exhibition will continue thru December 24, 2009. Hope to see you there!

Visual Art Exchange - 325 Blake St. Raleigh, NC 27601 (919)-828-7834

CaryAnn, oil on panel, 18" x 14"

Allison at Mirror, oil on panel, 26" x 16"

Leslie, oil on panel, 26" x 20"

related post

Monday, November 23, 2009


oil on panel
8" x 8"

I've worked on this itty painting now for 7 sessions of about 3-4 hours a piece and it is nearly complete. There are just a few little areas I'd like to work on a bit more before I can call this one 'done'. It's been such a joy to paint this beautiful nest and broken egg. I've loved having them set up in my studio, protecting them from visitors and a studio cat. It will be sad to put these on a shelf, out of their singular light...

I hope to make another progress video from the still shots I've taken of this painting's progression. At the very least, I will share with you the individual progress shots, but for now, I must get ready for our upcoming holiday. For those of you that celebrate it, Happy Thanksgiving. I have much to be thankful for this year, and your support is one such thing. I so appreciate all the kind comments and silent viewers that come to share in my studio experiences and art related ramblings.

Thank you!

see related post

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

She's not a Stranger to me...

My dear friend Diane Feissel has abandoned me. She's up and gone, as fast as I got to know her. I'm sad for myself and the rest of Raleigh, but very happy for her and her new home town of Philadelphia. That city suits her much better and I hope she'll acclimate quickly. I've known for awhile now that she was going to be moving around November 1st. But it wasn't until about three weeks before that date that the full reality set in. I got the bright idea to do a portrait of her, which 1)would leave a nice remembrance of her for me in my studio, and 2)force her to sit for me, chatting away while she stared at a speck on the wall. Amazingly, she agreed and we were able to get 2 three hour sittings in before her departure. We were hoping to get one more session in, but she ended up being a virus magnet and was quite ill, in the midst of packing. I may be devious, but I'm not cruel, so I didn't make her sit for me her last week here in Raleigh. Here are a few photos of how I developed this painting.

Diane with Kitten, oil on panel, 24" x 18"
While painting this, I had a few of life's persistent distractions. It's taken me longer than I had hoped. And now, there is still more I would like to do (for instance on the shirt). While I was painting it this week and last, I had a nagging thought that really I should be working on something else (like the Nest painting); that this painting was merely a selfish practice that probably shouldn't/ couldn't go into my impeding solo show, since it's JUST a portrait of a stranger to most people. Yet, I am so happy I chose to indulge myself, after all, Diane is not a stranger to me!

Also, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the kitten inclusion. My husband thinks I'm crazy to have Diane holding it like that. "What will people think"? I like that it adds a sort of maniacal aspect to the portrait. I feel that it's inclusion has brought a heck of a lot more interest to what was a stark, frontal portrait. {insert villain chuckle... boo waa...a..a.a.a}

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

In Flight 2

Hunting Buddies, Passenger 8D
graphite on paper
9.75" x 7.5"

Passenger 26D
graphite on paper
9.75" x 7.5"

These two drawings were done on my recent trip to California. The two gentlemen (one very lightly drawn across the aisle) in the first drawing were headed to Sioux Falls on a pheasant hunting trip. He turned out to be a very interesting guy and showed enough interest in the Arts, that I felt comfortable enough to show him the drawing when he woke up. His reply was a very Southern "oh, bless your heart". Now my understanding of that term is that it is a southern way of 1) filling space in a conversation, but more importantly 2)a nice way of insulting the person you are saying it to. Perhaps, passenger 8D did not intend to use it in that way, but I could not help chuckling to myself. I guess its similar to the term "oh, how interesting", not necessarily bad, but not so good either. Maybe he was just uncomfortable with the realization that a stranger had taken advantage of his sleeping visage (which is a thought that also makes me chuckle). Passenger 26D, in fact, was visibly annoyed with me for drawing him, turning a cold shoulder to me at one point, but I continued to draw him despite his discomfort. He had no interest in even saying hello when he sat down next to me and therefore I felt no obligation to be generous with the decency to stop drawing him when I noticed his discomfort. Horrible, I know.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

100 GRAND Reception

I thought I should post some photos of the fabulous Opening Reception that I enjoyed being a part of this past Thursday night for the 100 GRAND group exhibition at Sullivan Goss, which will be on exhibit thru January 31st, 2010. I enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting new ones. Thank you to Frank, Susan and Jeremy and all the hard working folks at Sullivan Goss (who got to hang these 100 paintings, and will get to patch all those holes...) It was a truly fantastic evening. Also, a huge thank you to my friend Fatima who became my personal chauffeur and roommate.

Chauffeur Fatima and myself.

me with friend and fellow exhibitor Adam Normandin (those beautiful train paintings are his).

Some of the participating artists attended. photo courtesy of Sullivan Goss - An American Gallery

Left to right: Guy Diehl, Ian Putnam, Angela Perko, Pamela Enticknap, Robert Redfield, Alia El-Bermani, Tracey Sylvester-Harris, Adam Normandin, John Nava, Susan Bush (Director), Colin Gray, Ken Bortolazzo, Dane Goodman, Robert Townsend, Dave Lefner

Below you can see a sampling of some of the art as hung on the walls (I somehow managed to miss photographing a few walls, sorry to those artists who's work was on these walls). To see more work and a short video click here. Or to see a close up of just my two paintings you can click here.

west wall

southwest corner

east wall

Also exhibiting that night were John Nava in the center gallery and Robert Townsend in the back gallery. Both have created amazing paintings, Nava in oils and Townsend in watercolor on large paper. Nava's paintings have a quiet calm that celebrates the beauty of the figure and local west coastline, while Townsend's depiction of the retro, which appeared meticulous from afar, have a wonderful painterly quality in many areas.

John Nava talking briefly (while in 4th position) about his recent paintings.

A few of John Nava's beautiful Facing West paintings

Robert Townsend's Thiebaud Does Watercolor, from his 'A Pop Mythology' series.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


oil on panel
20" x 16"

oil on panel
20" x 16"

I am pleased to announce that I have been juried in as an Artspace Associated Artist. Artspace is the center of all things Art related in Raleigh. As a non-profit visual art center Artspace has been providing the community with quality exhibitions and educational opportunities since 1986. The building is an incredible space with several exhibition galleries, education rooms and several artist studios (you would drool over some of these studio spaces). Being an AAArtist member provides numerous opportunities to exhibit and interact with the community. I'm taking full advantage of that all ready. If you are in the area, you can see these two paintings hanging in the hallowed halls of Artspace now thru January 23rd 2010. Have a night on the town and enjoy Raleigh's growing art scene every First Friday for a gallery walk, music and yummy food. The next Art Night is coming this week, Friday November 6th (unfortunately, I will miss this one as I will be in Santa Barbara for the 100 GRAND exhibit).