Category Archives: found object

The Harmony in Dissonance

Raymon Elozua: Structure/Dissonance is currently on view at the Everson Museum of Art, 401 Harrison Street, Syracuse, New York 13202. The show continues through December 31, 2022.

These are large additive sculptures featuring ceramics, glass, steel and found objects, which culminate in an explosion of color and beautiful junk that satisfies the artist’s intellectual philosophy of “decaying industrial landscapes.”

This is not just a new series of work that takes a theme and runs with it. It is more like a half-century career retrospective. The bauble-rich sculptures make more sense in multiple because they sort of announce the concern of global waste.

Included in this show is Elozua’s personal collection of rusty enamelware. This is the part of the experience I loved best because I spent my entire summer doing something that was in the making for about seventeen years.

I bought a metal detector and searched the yard of my 1900s era home. There was so much there. The videos are on my YouTube channel. Now I just need to intellectualize these finds and incorporate them into art. The meaning? Unearthing the treasures that are right beneath you on your path. Most of it was garbage because back in the early 20th century people buried their trash in their own backyards. Isn’t that ironic?

We are always burying our hearts under the mask of reality. Making art is about building dreams. I want to build mine with all that garbage. And so does Elozua with his. I’d say that is harmony, not dissonance.

Time Traveling in da Nook

Last year when I attended the Madison-Bouckville Antique Fest, I spent two additional hours looking for my car. I don’t know how I became so mixed up that day. Too much to see, really.

This year I stuck to one area. I parked in the location called Butternut Hill and just walked around and through those tents – for three hours! The whole thing is a time vortex. In the search for the old stuff of yesteryear, you can conceivably lose all track of time.

You still have three more days to take that drive on Route 20. From Syracuse, New York, head to Manlius, which will take you through Cazenovia and Morrisville to Madison.

I paid $5.00 to park but there is a possibility of finding free parking. And it is free to attend. Dealers are on both sides of the road (over 2,000!) set up in tents and there are also several antique shops along the route. There’s lots to see and plenty of food vendors too.

Before you go, set your intention to the universe in regard to what you are hoping to find. Then let yourself be guided to it. I purchased a bag of found object items to use in my artwork. I also enjoyed seeing old money, glass containers, and plenty of nostalgia. In addition, I stumbled upon lots of things my mother likes – porcelain figurines, crochet goods, teddy bears and baubles.

The best part was conversing with the vendors, all lovely people from here, there and every where. One man brought his antique store goods in from Louisiana. Another was from Fulton, NY. One lady from Pennsylvania told me that vendors pick the same or similar locations year after year. The Butternut Hill spot had excellent facilities for dining, showering and other aspects, she said.

Even if you don’t particularly like shopping, this festival is good exercise. It’s open 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM through Sunday. You can hike around for miles while time traveling. Now doesn’t that sound like a magical way to spend your day?

For more information go to www.madison-bouckville.com.

Sweet Salvage Gift Shoppe

This is a house turned into a store full of treasures both inside and outside. It is Sweet Salvage Gift Shoppe, 6483 E. Seneca Turnpike, Jamesville, NY 13078. Proprietor Kathy Hastings certainly has the gift of merchandising. She’s created a series of vignettes in each room of the house, combining old and new products for that rustic charm that speaks of nostalgia, as though you could take something home and claim it as your own personal heirloom.

Outside, you can find a multitude of objects for your yard – tables, birdhouses, birdbaths and objects d’arte for the garden.

Her eye for placement is impeccable! I love this store!

This is the perfect place to photograph a grouping to use in a still life assignment at school (and maybe it will be!). It’s all about the layering, the texture and the repetition of elements, I think.

There are several of these affirmation blocks (above). This place is filled with positivity!

And you can even find a bathroom sink! Yes, it is for sale!

They are open Monday-Friday 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM and Saturday-Sunday 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. For inquiries call (315) 492-1266 or email info@ssalvage.com.

They are also on Facebook. I’ve been following them for years and I finally stopped in for a visit! So fun! <3

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.

Owego!

Owego is amazing! Quaint nineteenth century store fronts house restaurants, art galleries, jewelry stores and antique shoppes (including a visitor’s center) that border the Susquehanna River in Owego, New York.

It is a beautiful place to spend a sunny summer afternoon, browsing, having smoothies and exploring, which is exactly what we did on Wednesday.

My friend Joyce and I stopped in to the Early Owego Antique Center. It is the old J.J. Newberry Co. building – two floors filled with vignettes decorated by more than ninety individual dealers. I have been a huge fan for a while now – loving everything they post on social media. I think I may have one of those top fan badges.

It was pretty much sensory overload. I was overwhelmed. I mean, so much to discover! So fun! Loved it! I really need to get back there again because now that I have had a chance to look at the pictures, I see things in the background that I didn’t notice when I was there, you know? Antique hunting is all about that thrill of finding something from your past, finding something you didn’t know you needed. Or maybe it is about manifesting something that is in your vortex – something you put there a long time ago and voila! There it is right in front of you!

I found a Wheaton glass bottle on the second floor in a back corner of the store. It is something I had been Google-ing for a while- it was like – what the heck was it doing there? So cool! And when I brought it to the register, I even got a discount on the price!

I highly recommend you take a trip out there. Owego, NY is west of Binghamton. It is a ninety minute drive from Syracuse.

Early Owego Antique Center is located at 43-45 Lake Street (P.O. Box 8) Owego, New York 13827. They are open 10:00 am – 5:00 pm daily (closed on Tuesdays though). Call (607) 223-4723 for more information.

Tenting It

The AmeriCu Arts & Crafts Festival is celebrating its 50th year in downtown Syracuse, New York. Located on the streets surrounding Columbus Circle, there are about 150 artisans and crafters represented in this three-day event. It ends around 4pm today, July 25, 2021, so there is still time to check it out!

There’s food trucks, drinks and music too. My sister and I were there for two hours yesterday. So fun!

This is a juried exhibition. Lula Castillo’s booth at the festival won an honorable mention award. Her work is incredible. She uses plants, nuts, seeds and organic dyes to create exquisite pieces of jewelry. I’ve never seen anything like this!

The colors are so vibrant and fun. I loved everything about her sustainable materials collection.

She comes to us from Long Island, New York (formerly Columbia!)

www.natural-sur.com

Booth A17

I thought Erin Primerano’s presentation of her handwoven fine art clothing was wonderful. Her tent looked like a real store! The pieces are one-of-a-kind looks, using a mix of fibers from silk to cotton, to wool and can be hand-washed.

Her company is called Haute Made and you can find her on Etsy! She lives in Syracuse, New York.

Booth A4

I met Ted Greenfield from Chittenango, New York, last week at his City Market booth. These wood charcuterie boards are gorgeous! His company is called Bayside Wood Products.

www.baysidewoodproducts.com

Booth E15

It’s always a pleasure to see the effervescent Barbara Conte-Gaugel (Syracuse, New York) and her mixed-media handbags and satchels. Everything is handmade from recycled fabrics (including leather and old flour sacks). The larger bags are among my favorites with whimsical patterns that inspire positivity. She is selling these bags at the festival but she is also a fine artist – paintings and assemblages.

www.barbaraconte-gaugel.com/

Devin Mack from Baltimore, Maryland, creates these fun wire sculptures of animals. He was in the process as I photographed him, said he does not use photographs, just whimsy, and the results are stunning!

www.drawnmetalstudios.com

Booth F13

Kathleen Scranton from Coventry, Connecticut, creates vintage book purses under the logo BeeZ. She comes to us from the business and marketing world. A chance rendezvous with a library eliminating old books sparked this plan to turn their covers into handbags. Purses come with a paperback version of the book.

www.beeZbyScranton.com

Booth C12

Michelle DaRin, Pompey, New York, is a rock star around here. Her face is on billboards, as she is currently represented by Cazenovia Jewelry! I noticed that everyone who walked by Montgomery Street was a customer, including me (I was wearing three of her bracelets!).

Michelle DaRin Jewelry is a one person operation – she is the face of the brand. She selects the stones, cuts the metal, does all the metal-smithing and strings the leather.

The look is upscale Bohemian-chic/’70s vibe meets the new millennium.

www.michelledarinjewelry.com

Wildflowers Armory is a co-op – artisans who share in the responsibility of selling their wares in their store in downtown Syracuse (217 S. Salina Street). Co-owner Michael Heagerty posed for a few pictures with Kathy and me. He is an amazing person who has single-handedly changed the view of the local art scene in Syracuse – a beautiful person inside and out! <3

They have a double tent set-up on Montgomery Street at the festival with an eclectic mix of items for sale.

Merchandise includes clothing (like the awesome Everson is for Lovers shirt!), soaps, notecards, crafts, and artwork.

They also have an online presence – https://wildflowersarmory.com/

Finally, I want my Superintendent to buy these metal bear sculptures for our school (We are the Chittenango Bears!). And I want the cardinal sculpture for my back yard.

OMG, Dale Rogers! His work is exceptional. The sculptures are crafted from stainless steel in his studio in Massachusetts.

Booth C1-2

https://dalerogersstudio.com/

The Aphrodisiac

“$ EVER”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“LUXE”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“FIND”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″

I created this series of twenty-four paintings, Talisman, in 2008. It is a love story: layered, filled with treasure, sparkle within dust, games and prizes, secrets and lies.

I experimented with varnish for the first time. Experimented with the permanence as well. The chalk was meant to fade with the years. It’s been thirteen years now and I admire the patina of these old friends. Yesterday I did an internet search for a solution to save that dust from settling further and the win-win came in the form of Pantene hair spray, believe it or not. So now, these paintings are fixed in time.

And the funny thing is, upon reflection, they bring me back to a place where I thought I had nothing, but in fact, I had it all. All the answers to all of my questions. I just did not know it then, which made life seem so confusing.

This game of life is a puzzle but if you take the time to look, listen and feel with your heart, you will resonate with all of it.

“CHARM”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“MAGIC”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″

The paintings are 18″ x 24″. Oil paint and chalkboard paint. Found objects, games pieces, fabric.

They work best on a wall in multiples. That’s usually the way it goes with my artwork. If you like it, you really can’t get enough and you just want more.

They hold the narrative and that is a powerful aphrodisiac. <3

“TIC TOK”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“SHADOW”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“SHIELD”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“THYME”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″
“COIN”, 2008, mixed-media, 18″ x 24″