An Artsy-Fartsy Evening

I went out to Covington’s Spring for Art celebration last night. First stop was Sarah Dunn’s gallery and studio fronting Boston Street. Sarah’s probably the youngest gallery owner in town, a bundle of blond energy and a big believer in participatory art. While displaying her Kandinsky-meets Peter Maxx-crossed with Dali blend of creations inside, she had plywood boards and paints out in the back alley for visitors to try their hand at a little graffiti.

While moseying along Columbia Street down to Brunner Gallery, I ran into Sandra Scalise Juneau, a food writer and and expert on Italian/Sicilian Creole culture. She’s been featured on a couple of Channel 12’s documentaries and Chef John Folse’s program as an authority on New Orleans’ Sicilian community’s St. Joseph’s day altar tradition. Nola and I will be posting about the altars in the near future. Hopefully Sandra will let us use some of her vintage altar photos from the 50s and 60s.

At Brunner, I talked to Linda Dautreuil, artist and the gallery’s curator, about their featured exhibit, works by Vicki Grant. She is a sculpture/mixed media artist who retired from a career as an architect and decided, as Linda said, “To get into the mud.” We also talked about Brunner’s now representing legendary northshore artist George Dunbar.

A favorite of mine, Arless Day, also had works on display at Brunner. Arless is a collage artist who builds scenes from elements he finds in books and magazines, his own photos and elements he paints into the scene. Dreamy and evocative, his works, often rooms created wholly from cut-photos of fireplaces, couches, chairs, plants and books are frozen in time, and make the viewer feel that something is about to happen in them. Arless also creates collages depicting sprawling Italianate villas and landscapes often featuring boats.

Next stop: Fort Isabel gallery, home to a bunch of great artists. Painters Suzanne King and Carol Hallock, glass artist Wes Koon, potter Kelly Landrum-Hammell, artists Carol Lapari, Martin Needom, Johnny Stout and Beryl Carbon are all member/owners. Carol Hallock has submitted a streetcar design I’ll be getting up on the site soon.

Kelly Landrum-Hammell is the proprietor of Three Dog Pottery in Carriere, Mississippi. She makes raku pottery, but also specializes in her own brand of horsehair and feather pottery. She throws white clay pieces, and when the kiln reaches 1500 scorching degrees, she removes the piece and applies horsehair and/or feathers the hot piece, leaving unique carbon patterns on the finished ceramic. Though not Kelly’s, this site has some good examples of what can be accomplished with this technique.

Down the street I went into Spectrum Gallery next to the Columbia Street Taproom who were featuring Garland Robinette and Robert Cook. Garland was there showing his portraiture work done in oil; he’s got a unique style that you wouldn’t guess came from this New Orleans television and radio icon.

While there I ran into Annie Strack, an artist and art writer best known for her nautical-themed watercolors and “boat portraits;” she is an official authorized artist for the U.S. Coast Guard, with paintings featured in the permanent collection of its fine-arts outreach program. Annie participated in the ForeKids Fleur de Lys public art project, but, unfortunately, she said she is not one of the streetcar artists this year. She did introduce me to another artist, Mary, who submitted a streetcar design. She’s going to email me with it for posting soon.

The final stop of the evening was Atelier, an interior design and antique house that is home to artists Marcia Homes and Jim Seitz. Jim’s pleasing impressionistic landscapes are a far cry from the precise medical and engineering illustrations he did for years before embarking on a new creative phase in life.

Sometimes being exiled on the Northshore isn’t too bad after all.

One Response to An Artsy-Fartsy Evening

  1. Nola on March 9, 2008 at 5:56 pm

    Sounds like a great night! I love looking at awt!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *