Category Archives: art

Barnacles

The Barn at Collamer Road is the site of a pop-up art exhibition starring three Cicero-North Syracuse art teachers. Kara Daviau, Amy Haven and James Vanhoven share their art in the upstairs gallery space of this amazing venue located at 6456 Collamer Road, East Syracuse, NY 13057. You can view the work from 11:00 am-1:00 pm on Saturday, April 2, 2022, and Sunday., April 3, 2022. And that’s it! The opening reception was today. The show is titled “Resonance”.

Their prices are very reasonable. Haven’s ceramics may have all sold! They are beautiful pieces – wall hangings, jewelry trays, pottery – with arts and crafts details such as quatrefoil and ginko leaves.

Vanhoven’s work is exquisite – he is technically proficient. He is the quintessential art teacher with a variety of interests all focusing on landscapes. There are etchings, watercolors and oil paintings, as well as pastel drawings.

Daviau paints in acrylic with collage. She incorporates musical themes giving each illustration of abandoned buildings a unique personality. She also sells merchandise depicting those paintings. These include apparel, prints and accessories.

I’m sure we will be seeing a lot more from these dynamic artist/colleagues!

Design an Animal

Last year, a local arts contributor connected with me to ask if I would share how I was going to teach art during the pandemic. I declined to participate because I did not want to allow anyone (read-people who would ultimately read said article) to criticize my choices when they really had no idea what the circumstances truly were.

School during 2020-2021 was about uplifting spirits, if that makes any sense. It was not plowing through curriculum while people were dealing with a global crisis, which brought with it low-level emotional feelings such as depression, sadness, fear, anger as well as physical illness.

My colleague and I spent our budget on individual supplies – markers, colored pencils, sketchbooks, etc. We did “dry media” projects and supplemented with vocabulary work. Many students worked 100% remotely with varying results due to their own perception of self-motivation.

We received some really fun results with this lesson – Design an Animal. Here is the video I made for the assignment. September 2020 marked the first time I’d done anything like this. Alone in my classroom on Wednesdays, which was the day students were all remote, I videotaped myself. No editing – just a straight shot, teaching the way I normally would with the exception of the fact that I could see myself on the screen and I had to give up the fact that I’m a real person and not an actress or model; that I was going to like myself sometimes and cringe at other times. I had to imagine that students were there and speak as though someone was on the other side actually listening to my stories. One take – no do overs because I didn’t have the time for that.

So here it is – the Design an Animal lesson posted on http://www.youtube.com. It is a lesson we shared with 6th, 7th and 8th graders. Needless to say, all of these multi-level shared lessons cannot be taught again for another two years, lol.

Please like and subscribe to my video channel.

P.S. Here is a link to Galina Bugaevskaya’s work – she is the one who photoshops cat faces on animals.

Forever Medusa

Here are two companion videos I created in September 2020 when I was teaching art remotely – one on the Medusa lesson I created years ago and the other is a pattern lesson. The pattern lesson – I created it for 2nd graders originally, so this should have been a review for my 8th graders. Katy and I used both lessons for 6th-8th graders last year.

Drawing a Horse

Here is a video I made in September 2020 during the teaching remotely phase of school. This is a middle school lesson – it was originally meant for 8th grade but I also did the lesson with 7th graders last year. It goes along with the horse lesson using Jaune “Quick-to-see” Smith as a reference, although it can be used for many different lessons or as a stand alone. I am currently using butterflies for the images in my Smith painting lesson. I may post about them in the future.

If you want to see more videos – I am planning to revise my channel and maybe even start vlogging! They will probably be just as raw and unedited as this one is – I’m not tech savvy.

Please subscribe. Right now I think I have three subscribers (and one may or may not be me). It’s a new path – let’s see where it takes me. P.S. I love www.youtube.com! 🙂

The Clay Face Project

My 8th grade accelerated Studio in Art students created these clay face masks (with Miller #10 clay purchased from Clayscapes). We used the slab technique over a plastic face form then added clay to shape the features. I poked holes at the sides to secure a Twisteezwire to the back. They can hang on a wall – I love that!

The glaze is called Mayco Jungle Gems. It contains glass bits! So cool.

Connected

3rd place – Chittenango Lions Club Peace Poster contest 2021 – “We Are All Connected”

My 8th grade accelerated Studio in Art students completed an intense nine weeks of creating these peace posters for the Chittenango Lions Club. The Lions sponsor an international peace poster competition for middle school aged children with a grand prize of $5,000.

It is an illustration lesson/editorial design project with some limitations – no words or characters of any kind, no trademarked items or advertisements. We used 16″ x 20″ white tagboard and Prismacolor colored pencils. The Lions Club generously donated enough sets so that my students could each have their own 48 color set. Thirty-eight students competed this year.

Students spent additional hours on these posters at home on the weekends to complete them in time for the contest deadline. The winning poster will go on to the regional competition and possibly the state one as well. The theme for this year is “We Are All Connected”. Now that we are all back in school full-time, this sentiment is truly apropos. <3

2nd place – Chittenango Lions Club Peace Poster contest 2021- “We Are All Connected”
1st place – Chittenango Lions Club Peace Poster contest 2021 – “We Are All Connected”

Marisol @ Warhol

The Andy Warhol Museum is located at 117 Sandusky Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15212. Jessica Beck, the museum’s Milton Fine curator of art, has organized an amazing exhibition pairing Warhol and Marisol Escobar (1930-2016). The show is titled Marisol and Warhol Take New York.

It is a trip down memory lane, a story of two artists navigating the Pop Art world of NYC circa the 1960s. Marisol’s sculptures are an exquisite marriage between geometric wood blocks and proficient rendering skill. These three-dimensional portraits depict social values and popular culture tomes with whimsy and bold panache. I just love her work.

My friend Joyce and her family took a trip there last weekend. On Saturday, October 23, 2021, Jessica Beck will lead a tour of the show, complete with art making and sketching activities from noon to 4:00 pm.

The exhibition continues through February 14, 2022. In April, it will travel to the Perez Art Museum, Miami FL. Contact the museum for more info – (412) 237-8300.

Kids & Keith

There is still time to visit the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York. The Keith Haring exhibit will be on display until October 11, 2021. Meanwhile, on the walls of Chittenango Middle School, my students’ artwork is currently on display. It took a lot of heavy-duty stickies to get them to stay up – the tile was not particularly cooperative.

Marketplace on James

Marketplace on James is a new store at 2802 James Street in the Eastwood section of Syracuse, New York, 13206. It is the former Tip a Few bar now transformed into an artisan gallery, a tattoo parlor and a food place.

My good friends and Eastwood residents Bob and Marie Leogrande have begun a new venture making and selling their homemade pastas and sausage rolls. They use family recipes and all natural ingredients. Everything is packaged fresh and ready to eat! The Leograndes are also available for catering private parties (big and small) and will be in the store for occasional pop-up lunches!

Picking up a few of Marlene Roeder’s Zen inspired coloring books is worth the visit to Marketplace on James. They are really lovely – everyone of all ages can enjoy them because, let’s face it, who doesn’t love coloring?

Yesterday was the grand opening of Marketplace on James complete with a visit from the mayor and media coverage. There are about fifty individual vendors represented. I believe they pay a monthly fee to house their crafts under one roof.

I was there briefly and took these snapshots. It is a bit overwhelming when you first walk in because there is so much eclectic merchandise. New folk art style paintings, antique repurposed furniture, handmade jewelry and a lot of gift-type thingys are situated on different retail fixtures and tables. There didn’t seem to be a clear view of individual areas the way the space is divided at The Shoppes at Johnny Appleseeds.

But it is whimsical and fun, if you enjoy gift shopping/browsing. This place is the brainchild of owner/operator Eileen Porto. Her mission – to bring community and small businesses together under one roof.

Marketplace will be open Monday-Wednesdays 7:00 am – 6:00 pm, Friday & Saturday 7:00 am – 9:00 pm and Sundays noon – 6:00 pm. Vendors will replenish stock periodically, so there will always be new goods to see.

The kitchen is new/updated and will have something aromatic available daily, including free samples of products from these fabulous local vendors.

There is only street parking available – no parking lot, but there are businesses on both sides of James Street in that area with parking lots – coffee shops, restaurants, hair salons, banks, etc. If you’ve never done it, you could make a day of it and explore Eastwood! There is an adorable deck around the corner to sit and have a coffee and maybe do a photo shoot by the wall mural – and an amazing plant shoppe that will make you say – this is so cool! (Or at least, it did me, lol). Enjoy!!! (for more information, call 315-928-6724) <3

Covid After Party

This is the state of my classroom. Last year, the teachers traveled from room to room instead of the students moving about the building. We are somewhat back to normal this year. It’s good to be back.

So far, I checked in some supplies and pulled a bunch of posters out of the back room. I’m in the process of creating new lessons and deciding which classes will do which lessons.

School starts for students on September 7th.

I have a lot of work to do and there is no air conditioning in the classroom. Other challenges will include the social distancing stuff and the masks. I’ll try to find a way to make it fun.