Images

Suddenly You’re Gone

I was in graduate school for Art Education at S.U. from January 1992 until December 1993. That’s when I decided I would be a professional artist.  Up until that time, I was either a student or…well, I don’t know what, a dabbler?  I was always an artist, but never really believed I was truly one until then, I guess.

I taught myself how to use oil paint and began peddling my paintings around town, getting restaurants and coffee shops to offer me one-month exhibits.  That led to a few articles about my work in the Syracuse New Times and The Post Standard newspapers, which gave me the confidence to continue to seek more ways to become a part of the local scene.

Around this time, I joined the Cultural Resources Council’s Visual Arts Committee.  I don’t remember how I found out about it – the paper?  Very likely.  There was no Facebook or cell phones back then.

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I worked with Bill Delavan, Arlene Abend, Linda Bigness, Steve Joslyn, Bob Shenfeld, Joan Applebaum, Yolanda Tooley and Michael Moody.  I became the Chair of the committee at one point.  We were responsible for the juried exhibitions at the John Mulroy Civic Center in Syracuse, NY.  We would have monthly meetings to plan the shows, set up installation dates and art receptions.

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I ended up dropping out of the committee for the typical reason – volunteering ends up taking its toll and you find yourself not having any time to pursue your own art while helping other artists achieve their dreams.  I remember introducing someone to the local art critic who then wrote a wonderful article about the kid in the following Sunday’s paper (lol, she’d never even mentioned me in an article – I was lumped in like the Professor and Maryanne in the original Gilligan’s Island sitcom song.)

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The benefit, of course, was that my colleagues became life-long friends.  Yolanda passed away a couple years ago.  Today I found out that Michael Moody has died.

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I just saw him last month at the Edgewood Art Gallery art opening and before that at his booth at Plowshares at Nottingham High School and before that it was the Westcott Street Fair.  His set-up at Westcott was right in front of the mural he created by the fork in the road with Beech Street.

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Michael displayed his artwork at the Chittenango Middle School library not too long ago, which included giving a talk to my students, discussing his favorite pieces, his joy in creating art and living life as an artist.

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Our last conversations were full of mutual admiration society stuff, a lot of love yous,  laughter and hugs.  I thanked him again for the information about that art contest my student ended up winning and he thanked me back and said he was really glad that I pursued the contest and that we won it to boot.  He is/was an amazing person and artist.  I will miss his presence in our art community very, very muchy-much. ❤

 

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Techno Fashion Glitch

Lucky Brand jacket, Warner Bros. Hogwarts T-shirt, Trina Turk skirt, Nine West booties
Lucky Brand jacket, Warner Bros. Hogwarts T-shirt, Trina Turk skirt, Nine West booties
Honora necklace, Banana Republic leather top, cardigan and velvet pants, BCBGGeneration booties
Honora necklace, Banana Republic leather top, cardigan and velvet pants, BCBGGeneration booties

One of the main reasons I haven’t been blogging – I was having technical difficulties with my Instagram account.  The pictures were not saving to the camera’s gallery.  I tried uninstalling the program and reinstalling it and it didn’t work until tonight.  Yeah, tonight it worked.  Weird.

Michelle DaRin jewelry, Banana Republic cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria top and skirt, Nine West boots
Michelle DaRin jewelry, Banana Republic cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria top and skirt, Nine West boots
Free People cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria T-shirt and leggings, Lucky Brand top, Ralph Lauren boots
Free People cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria T-shirt and leggings, Lucky Brand top, Ralph Lauren boots

I must be more relaxed or something – I am on vacation.  Or maybe it’s just an example of perseverence, although I had been on the verge of giving up, lol, over something so simple.

Michelle DaRin jewelry, BCBGMaxAzria dress, 7 For All Mankind jeans, Nine West booties
Michelle DaRin jewelry, BCBGMaxAzria dress, 7 For All Mankind jeans, Nine West booties
JCrew blazer, Rachel Roy top, Banana Republic skirt, Steve Madden boots
JCrew blazer, Rachel Roy top, Banana Republic skirt, Steve Madden boots

A former student asked me how he could get his creativity back.  He thinks he’s lost it, I guess.  And the truth is, no one can find it for you.  You just have to take the time to quiet your mind of all the bugs that are attacking you.

BCBGMaxAzria dress, Nine West boots
BCBGMaxAzria dress, Nine West boots
Michelle DaRin jewelry, Berkley Cashmere cardigan, Bailey 44 top, BCBGMaxAzria pants, Nine West booties
Michelle DaRin jewelry, Berkley Cashmere cardigan, Bailey 44 top, BCBGMaxAzria pants, Nine West booties

No more I’m not good enough…I can’t do this and all that junk. Believe you can do it.  Know you can.  Then think about how you will do it and just do it.

Viola top, Calvin Klein jeans, BCBGGeneration booties
Viola top, Calvin Klein jeans, BCBGGeneration booties
Lord & Taylor cashmere cardigan, Banana Republic cashmere dress, Nine West boots
Lord & Taylor cashmere cardigan, Banana Republic cashmere dress, Nine West boots

I know that some of my friends did not like hearing me say that I did not want to make new artwork until I started selling the art I have already made.  It is not that I lack creativity.  I just desired a sign from the universe that my art is leading to other great things.  It is very important to me to achieve financial success as an artist because I want to show my students that it is possible.  I mean, that is one reason.  I mean, I didn’t make over a thousand works of art for them to just be stored away forever.  That doesn’t make a lick of sense.

JCrew cardigan, Banana Republic dress, Nine West booties
JCrew cardigan, Banana Republic dress, Nine West booties
BCBGMaxAzria cardigan and dress, BCBGGeneration booties
BCBGMaxAzria cardigan and dress, BCBGGeneration booties

And then, I haven’t been doing anything to make any of it happen.  I haven’t been actively seeking venues or peddling my wares anywhere since the Natur-Tyme exhibit where I sold a handful of $5.00 cards.  So, I kind of sound like a person who does not take my own advice.

Michelle DaRin jewelry, Free People cardigan, Lucky Brand top, BCBGMaxAzria belt, Banana Republic skirt, Nine West booties
Michelle DaRin jewelry, Free People cardigan, Lucky Brand top, BCBGMaxAzria belt, Banana Republic skirt, Nine West booties
Banana Republic suit, BCBGMaxAzria top, BCBGGeneration booties
Banana Republic suit, BCBGMaxAzria top, BCBGGeneration booties

The truth is I wanted to manifest getting an art show in a passive way.  I was already doing everything I could to get myself out into the stratosphere.  I am here.  Right here.  And on Instagram and Linkedin and Facebook.  I have over 20,000 views on this blog.  I wanted someone to find me.  Someone who was looking for me and my art because they know it will sell.

Banana Republic sweater and pants, Calvin Klein belt, Nine West booties
Banana Republic sweater and pants, Calvin Klein belt, Nine West booties
Berkley Cashmere cardigan, Warner Bros. Gryffindor T-shirt, Nine West booties
Berkley Cashmere cardigan, Warner Bros. Gryffindor T-shirt, Nine West booties

Well, it finally happened.  I will give you more details as it gets closer to show time.  I was asked to be part of an art show at a medical facility in New Jersey.  The show starts some time in April with a reception on May 5th, 2016.  I will be exhibiting and selling my Dreamtime and Echolalia series paintings (it is an animal-themed show).  The curator saw my work on Linkedin.com.

Michelle DaRin jewelry, Free People cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria tank top and leggings, Ugg boots
Michelle DaRin jewelry, Free People cardigan, BCBGMaxAzria tank top and leggings, Ugg boots
Black Brown 1826 cashmere sweater, BCBGMaxAzria leggings, Ralph Lauren boots
Black Brown 1826 cashmere sweater, BCBGMaxAzria leggings, Ralph Lauren boots

Trina Turk recently replied to my comment on her picture on Instagram.  She said, Love you, too and something about wanting to be an art teacher one day!  I have the dream of meeting her one day, becoming friends and maybe even working with her – designing clothing with silk dyed to match my watercolors.

BCBGMaxAzria cardigan, top and pants, Nine West booties
BCBGMaxAzria cardigan, top and pants, Nine West booties
Bar III sweater, BCBGMaxAzria leggings, BCBGGeneration booties
Bar III sweater, BCBGMaxAzria leggings, BCBGGeneration booties

Two years ago, I wouldn’t have dreamed I would actually be interacting with her on social media.  Things can happen.  You can mold your life consciously even if you dream big.

This blog is about my community, my artwork and fashion because I have all of these other dreams.  And I think it is perfectly okay to slide your creativity around to wherever it takes you.  Who knows where it will stick?  There are bound to be more glitches along the way.  That is kind of the fun of it.  To never lose faith even when junk makes you feel like quitting.

Banana Republic sweater, Trina Turk dress, Nine West boots
Banana Republic sweater, Trina Turk dress, Nine West boots
Michelle DaRin jewelry, BCBGMaxAzria top and pants, Nine West booties
Michelle DaRin jewelry, BCBGMaxAzria top and pants, Nine West booties

I have a few more goals to achieve with the remainder of this February break.  I am buying a car, so I guess these fashion posts are going to seem redundant for a while.  While preparing the stuff for my taxes I tallied how much money I spent on clothes this past year and it was kind of a lot.  (No, I don’t deduct any of it, lol)  It would be nice if clothes were free, wouldn’t it?  Just thought I’d throw it out there if anyone is listening.  Would love to make that one stick….

New Year for the New Year

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My Studio in Art students just finished these mugs.  So – it was a glazing project.  They were ready-made bisque-fired cappuccino mugs.  Students used Mayco and Amaco glazes to create an animal of the Chinese Zodiac in honor of Chinese New Year.

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Nobody picked the monkey though!

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I took these images to post here.  Their response?

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“Oh, you and that blog!” with an eye roll, lol.

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Good Gig

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Whenever I run into J.P. Crangle, he always tells me that my teaching job is a good gig.  I LOVE that because it is soooo true!  I totally love my job – everything about it.  The curriculum is flexible enough that I can incorporate any artists or art movements, or even cultures that I choose.  I mean, there are thousands to pick from, as everything we know about ancient civilizations comes from studying their art.

I love the people at school.  The students are really fun.  Eighth graders and now, after a ten-year hiatus, I will be teaching fifth grade again (one section)!  They seem to love the projects we do and we spend a lot of time smiling, laughing and having fun while making art.  And it only gets better every year.

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J.P. Crangle and I went to graduate school together.  He is a professional artist and caricaturist extraordinaire!  I still have the one he drew of me, which he had created for the open house we had for students back in the M-17 days of the Syracuse University Art Education department.

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Good gig – he said it again when I saw him Friday, January 8, 2016 at the Edgewood Gallery art opening reception where he is showing and selling brilliantly-hued cartoon paintings on wood and quirky plaster doll sculptures in a show titled “Small Planets” alongside the work of Dan Shanahan and Sharon Alma.

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His paintings and sculptures are truly whimsical displays of color and fun!  The gallery/frame shop looks totally different from the way it looked during the last show (with the exception of the amazing David McDonald’s mugs on a table and powerhouse artist Arlene Abend’s tiny sculptures on the window ledge surrounded by healthy, leafy plants!  They were there the last time too and are not part of this exhibit).

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Dan Shanahan is exhibiting these incredible watercolor paintings and hand painted prints rendered with the tiniest details that keep you involved, seeking and finding more to see.  They are doodles with precision.  Really incredible stuff.

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Sharon Alma, another friend of mine, is selling jewelry in the display case.  Very colorful and incredibly, they are made of paper!

I went to the Gold Key awards ceremony for the regional Scholastic Art Awards competition last Thursday night at OCC and I was struck by the proficiency. The majority of artwork selected as winners this year were literal translations in portrait, still life and landscape.  Student technicians with inspiring mastery of detail.  The rendering skills are nothing short of breathtaking.  Not much over all in the abstract realm though nor in emotional content.

It was the same way when I was in high school.  Top prize was a Blue Ribbon back then, which I won for my portfolio – this led to getting accepted at Syracuse University where I was told my portfolio was one of the best the interviewer had seen.

Funny that, because when I look at the work now – some on the walls of my parents’ home and others that I have in a paper portfolio shoved away in the crawl space of my 2nd bedroom – I think it completely lacks emotion.

Yes, I can draw, but the artwork I enjoy making now is abstract -about my emotional journey through life, one rich with texture and rhythm, and color.

Which is why I was thrilled to support my former student Maria L. Her sculpture portfolio won a Gold Key (her current instructor is Allison Kominecky).

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She created this white dress from an underlying structure of chicken wire.  The bodice was shellacked with her parents’ divorce papers.  All of the tissue paper from Christmas (according to her mom) made up the fluffy skirt.  This hauntingly beautiful piece filled with raw emotion transcends the competition and becomes a kind of memory of time and space while her other large piece filled with a cascade of paper butterflies almost says that beauty is abundant yet fleeting so one must enjoy the moment while one can.  It all makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time while giving the artist a giant hug for her bravery and perseverance.

That’s joy.

Her work, like the three artists’s at Edgewood, can also be described as whimsical and fun.  One can surely find the beauty in realism, but art can also symbolize magic in other ways.  Maria’s work and the rest resonate joy, an emotion we can all do well to include more of in our lives.

I just read a thingy in one of Rhonda Byrnes’ books about it.  Say it to yourself whenever you can, but slowly.  I – AM – JOY.  Say it a bunch of times and often.  If you are ever down for whatever reason, I guarantee it will make you smile.  Makes you realize that life is supposed to be joyous and fun.  That’s definitely a good gig if you can find it.

The Edgewood show will be on display at 216 Tecumseh Road, Syracuse, NY 13224 until February 19, 2016.  For more information and hours of operation, find the gallery here or call (315) 445-8111.

If you are interested in checking out Maria’s art and the rest of the Scholastic Art Awards winners, it is all on display until the end of February at the Whitney Building at Onondaga Community College, Syracuse, NY.

 

 

The Dreamer’s Legacy

You’d think that Syracusans would have no trouble driving around in a blizzard yesterday, but the hazardous conditions resulted in many car accidents around town.  I stayed home in my little bungalow in my pajamas all day, a fire in my wood-stove and a cat on my lap.  Spent much of the day dreaming.  Thinking about future art and writing projects and reflecting on the last six to twelve months of my life.

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I met Jan Brett once and asked her if she stays in her pajamas all day since she creates her children’s books from her home office.  She laughed and said she gets dressed every morning and makes it like a nine-to-five job.

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So, today I got up with the intention of bracing the storm to go to work.  I had breakfast and used the snow-blower on my driveway only to find out once I came in that school was changed from two-hour delay to closed. (I am about to go out again to do it all over again.  It is seriously snowing like cray-cray!)

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I am in yoga pants and a cashmere sweater and my Ugg boots that I wear as slippers.  Plus a cashmere beanie because it is still a little cold in here – apparently, I have the worst insulation in the neighborhood, as National Grid likes to remind me every month with those you-use-way-more-energy-than-anyone-else letters.

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I compromised a little – not quite the Tashionista I would have been if I had gone to work, but I am “decent”, lol.

Okay, now that all of that is out of the way, welcome to my first blog post of 2016.  Part of my contemplation has been deciding what my goals will be for this blog for this year and beyond, for my art and for my life in general. As I still sit here pondering, I am also looking back to see how far – if at all – I have come on this artistic journey.  Last year at this time, I noted a few things.  Like I had two students win awards in Scholastics. This year I had six honorable mentions out of fourteen entries, which is pretty great!

Last year at this time, I had 3,700 followers on Twitter.  Now I have 6,504.  I also doubled my connections on both Facebook and Linkedin.  By promoting these blog posts, I have received a lot of support from so many people all over the world, and tons of endorsements from friends, acquaintances and strangers on Linkedin.

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My friend Anne Novado recently closed Gallery 4040 here in Syracuse and moved to Jersey City, NJ to start a new gallery, which will open in the spring.  I miss her already, but it is such an exciting time for her.  She is embarking on a new chapter in her life, a new adventure.  A Syracuse artist/businesswoman branching out into another city and state.

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I love the idea of reinventing myself, of finding my purpose, and a part of me wishes I had some giant life-altering event to focus on like Anne has.  At Christmas, my sister said something I thought was profound – she said, “I chose to move back to Syracuse (from Boston) I chose to live my life here.  I don’t want to find a job elsewhere.”

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I did that once, when I lived in Ft. Lauderdale over twenty years ago.  My life feels like it is supposed to be here now.  I mean, I think so.  I want to say I have the same conviction that she has, but I am not quite sure that I do.  I do think of myself as a Syracuse artist though, as I have lived the majority of my life here.

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On Sunday, Penny Santy and I visited the Onondaga Historical Association.  It is a museum encompassing a history of Syracuse, New York.  It is such a beautiful thing to have historians who keep track of what once was and are the guardians of both past and future here in Syracuse. Like The Giver, lol.

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There are two art exhibitions currently, as well as permanent collection memorabilia.  One of the shows is called Snowy Splendor – Winter Scenes of Onondaga County.  It’s on the 2nd floor.  My friend Joan Applebaum has a painting in this show.

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There are paintings and photographs depicting Syracuse scenes and landmarks.  They’ve filled the room with flocked pine trees and old sleds too.  And of course, that giant statue that used to be on the roof of a brewery on the North side.  I remember seeing it a lot growing up.  We used to wait in the car while Mom ran into a bakery around there, I think.

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It’s weird seeing it as part of Syracuse’s history because I don’t feel like I am that old and it is a part of my life’s narrative.  That’s what this museum is like for me.  A lot of what I saw in there looks like it came from our old house on Ashworth Place or things many of us can still find in basements or attics complete with that familiar musty mildew smell.  There is a collection of World War I medals like the one in my jewelry box that belonged to my great grandfather.  There are plates from the defunct Syracuse China factory – the ones my parents have with the bird in the center.  Someone has made broken pieces of these plates into jewelry that is for sale in the gift shop.  You can purchase silk scarves with that same bird.  It’s just all so familiar, like a home away from home or a dream….

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The other art exhibition is called A Life in Art – A Highlight of Women Artists in OHA’s collections.  Its location is adjacent to the gift shop.  This show is up until June 5, 2016 so there is plenty of time to see it.  My friend Arlene Abend is represented in the exhibit.  In the ’70s, she created these little metal sculptures for the Syracuse Symphony’s fundraiser. Arlene has been such a force in the Syracuse art scene.  I am so glad to see that she was recognized here.

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You know, every generation thinks they invented the arts in a way.  You know what I mean – kids think they are way cooler than their parents or their teachers….  What I love about this show is how these women from the earlier days were able to create art at all and get recognized – in a time when they were expected to be wives and mothers first and foremost.  They were true creative trailblazers!  Like the woman whose husband was a firefighter and she sometimes accompanied him to a fire resulting in paintings.  Or the woman who painted the Syracuse Savings Bank for her relative who worked there.

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There’s a marble sculpture and block prints, watercolors, oils and charcoal portraits. Mostly portraits and landscapes.  Betty Munro was a landscape artist.  A watercolor of hers is part of this show and there are more originals for sale in the gift shop.  It is really incredible to see these beautiful pieces for sale (only $425-$575 unframed).  They are images depicting downtown Syracuse landmarks, which would be perfect for the walls of any businesses still located in the vicinity!

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I loved viewing this show and imagining one of my abstract pieces alongside the rest of these talented artists’ work.  Someday….  Am I worthy?  Maybe that is part of my dream. To be recognized internationally just so that my hometown can someday acknowledge me as one of Syracuse’s best.  Now that is something I truly would love to manifest.

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The OHA is located at 321 Montgomery Street, Syracuse, NY 13202.  They are open Wednesday-Friday 10am-4pm and Saturday and Sundays 11am-3:30pm (Closed Monday and Tuesday).  Call (315) 428-1864 for more information.  Find their website here.  You can donate or become a member, or even volunteer as a docent.  It is such an amazing place! They do a lot of student field trips and have an archive you can search.  I am very interested in locating an old picture of my house, which was built in 1900. That would be very cool.

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The Karen Section of Town

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Those of you who knew me in the ’90s know this about me, but for the rest of you, let me paint you a picture of what my life was like.  I taught art at a middle school that was an hour drive from home, so a typical Friday looked like this:  get up at 5:30 am, leave the house at 6:30 to be at work at 7:30; work until 3:30 pm, get home at 4:30; go to the gym for two hours.  Clean my room (or not).

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At around 10:00 pm, I would drive to Armory Square.  No plans – I just knew my friends would be out.  They always started at a bar called Witherspoon’s (not there anymore), and somehow we would hop around until 2:00 am then go to a Denny’s.  So I would pretty much do a twenty-four hour day!

Crazy times.

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But before that – in the ’80s…dating myself…I worked at Bryant & Stratton teaching Fashion Merchandising.  Yes, I was a professor.  I used to frequent Armory Square when it was a sort of derelict meets artsy neighborhood.  There was a frame shop on the corner of the main intersection called I’ve Been Framed (where I met a very beautiful guy named Mike).  I got my bed (that I still sleep in) at the Antique Underground on E. Fayette St. at a basement shoppe that reeked of mold, lol.

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When I told my cousin Nick the story of how I got a flat tire on E. Fayette Street (nearly thirty years ago) across from what is now The Black Olive restaurant – how there was no one to help me.  Every man who walked by was either blind or crippled, or missing an arm it seemed.

It was just super weird, I know.  And there were no cell phones, so I tried calling for help from the pay phone but the line was busy because there was also no call-waiting back then.  I should also preface this by saying it was raining that day and I was wearing a white linen suit complete with a pencil skirt, stockings and heels…and I am still unwilling to learn how to change a flat tire, lol…. When I got one this past summer, I still called my dad.  One of these days I should get AAA….

Anyhow, to make a short story long, as I have been known to do, in around 1986 or ’87, Nick started calling Armory Square the Karen section of town.

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The Karen section of town has changed a lot since then.  Lots of restaurant chains, as well as local haunts that are GREAT.  There’s a Starbucks and a Subway along with Kitty Hoynes, Blue Tusk, Empire Brewing Company, Pastabilities, The Bistro Elephant….

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There’s Jet Black, an amazing clothing shop where I bought my very first Trina Turk top, which is still one of my favorites to this day (bought in ’98 or ’99).  And now (drum roll)- THERE IS AN ART CO-OP CALLED ARMORY ARTWORKS!

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They had a grand opening that I missed, even though it said I went to it on Facebook.  I click that I am going everywhere and I don’t always follow through.  But I rectified that today.

My friend Janine and I took a stroll around the block, had lunch at the Empire Brewing Company and visited the gallery.

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The address is 136 Walton Street, Syracuse, NY.  It is an upstairs venue so I am going to say I do not think it is handicapped-accessible.  I mean, I did not remember seeing an elevator.  But if that is not an issue, once upstairs you will find an array of decorative and functional pieces by local artists.

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From what I understand, there are a couple of ways one can join the co-op. There is a $120 per month cover to be a member.  There is also a part-time scenario where you help (wo)man the place, ring register, and allow a 40% commission off sales of your art.

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Hours of operation:

11:00 am – 6:00 pm  Monday-Wednesday

11:00 am – 7:00 pm  Thursday

11:00 am – 8:00 pm  Friday-Saturday

noon – 5:00 pm  Sunday

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It is really beautifully merchandised and the prices are surprisingly reasonable.  Several of my friends are selling work there – Barbara Vural, Wendy Harris, Amy Bartell.  You can get art that has been printed on notecards for only $3.00 each or four for $10.00.   I usually do this then put the cards in frames if I cannot afford the originals.  It’s a great way to start an art collection.

Bracelets for under $40.00; hand-made sweaters, scarves, pottery, paintings, prints, you name it!  There’s really something for everyone!

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If you haven’t yet purchased original art for your home, I really urge you to do so.  There’s nothing better than owning something made with love, something made by a neighbor.  I don’t know – the comaraderie of friendship is a great gift, I think.  There is so much good here that I feel like we all benefit from the experience.

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So, if you find yourself in the Karen section of town, please visit this amazing place!  And if you get there soon, you’ll have a chance at a $25 gift certificate prize – no purchase necessary!

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For more information, call them at (315) 870-3408 or visit their website armoryartworks.com

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They are also on Facebook – find them here.

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Pizza & Art

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I’m not much of a drinker – I have a glass of wine socially, maybe, like, once a month (if that). I don’t really love the way it tastes and it gives me a headache afterwards so it’s not my “cup of tea”.  And for that matter, alcohol in general.

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I don’t eat bread or cheese.  I don’t like spicy foods or garlic….  For these obvious reasons and probably others of which I am not yet fully aware, I rarely date Italian men for very long periods of time, lol.  No wine, pasta, or pizza…no ice cream either.   Am just not an Italian foodie, or foodie in general.

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So what was I doing at a pizza-themed art show last night?

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Yeah – there was a pop-up art exhibition last night at Spark gallery on Fayette Street in Syracuse, New York.  Called The Passion of the Crust.

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A tenner got me in to see pizza paintings and sculptures.

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Many were painted on these pizza paddles.  I loved the concept!  It reminded me of a Project Runway fashion design challenge, only with artwork.

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This would be a great art lesson for my Studio in Art students (or at least a sketchbook homework assignment)!

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Some of the interpretations were kind of macabre…

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And some quite literal.

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Because it had been planned for the day after Christmas, many used religion to get their pizza messages across…

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It really was a great concept.  Dozens of artists sharing work on the walls in the gallery space.  Music and pizza slices available in the back room.

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A lot of the pieces had sold tickets on them, which was great, but unfortunately, there was no literature available as to making future purchases.  I guess that is the very nature of a one-night only event. It’s kind of like a happening of sorts and I commend these artists on making this event happen.  Syracuse has some really cool artsy people and part of what I am attempting to do with this blog is to make everyone aware of that.  To bring the art scene to the public in a way that the regular Joe can understand it, like it, buy it, live with it, love it, etc.

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The only person I knew there was Steve Nyland (above with the blue hair).  He is an artist and art curator who lives and works in Syracuse and in Utica, New York.  He said that many of these artists were from the Utica area.

Steve is curating a Star Wars and Star Trek art-themed show at the Syracuse Tech Garden next month!  (Perfect timing, don’t you think?)

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I really hope they decide to take this show on the road – like, get it seen in other venues, maybe a pizza shoppe or two.  Get it resurrected?  Call it The Dough Also Rises.  Tastes like a plan….

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