Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Michele Obama's words at the Metropolitan Museum

I was inspired by reading the words of Michele Obama as she cut the ribbon to open the American Wing of the Metropolitan Museum of art. I want to share excerpts with you and hope we can all spread these sentiments.

"...From the beginning of our nation, the inspired works of our artists and artisans have reflected the ingenuity, creativity, independence and beauty of this nation. It is the painter, the potter, the weaver, the silversmith, the architect, the designer whose work continues to create an identity for America that is respected and recognized around the world as distinctive and new.
....Our future as an innovative country depends on ensuring that everyone has access to the arts and to cultural opportunity. Nearly 6 million people make their living in the non-profit arts industry, and arts and cultural activities contribute more than $160 billion to our economy every year. And trust me, I tried to do my part to add to that number.
.... But the intersection of creativity and commerce is about more than economic stimulus, it's also about who we are as people. The President and I want to ensure that all children have access to great works of art at museums like the one here. We want them to have access to great poets and musicians in theaters around the country, to arts education in their schools and community workshops.
...The arts are not just a nice thing to have or to do if there is free time or if one can afford it. Rather, paintings and poetry, music and fashion, design and dialogue, they all define who we are as a people and provide an account of our history for the next generation. "

Sunday, May 17, 2009

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Tim Harding's work

I am at home looking at Tim Harding's CD of new works and thinking about how lucky I am to be able to thrill to his brilliant colors and masterful use of silks to create texture. Tim's abstract paintings are of the material rather than something applied to the material. Tim has been working with fiber ever since I can remember which must be at least 25 years ago. During that time he has experimented, and developed techniques that have been imitated by others but you can always tell the master. You can move into Harding's works and float suspended in a world of shape and color. I will have some of these new pieces in the gallery in a few weeks so watch for more images and plan to visit for this experience. I promise you will transcend the daily news, and your personal day to day grind.
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Friday, May 8, 2009

What is next!

I am surprised to find that I have not had anything to say for so long. So much has happened since I attended the Think Tank but I want to look forward and not recap my life since then. We are happily very busy at the gallery, getting prepared for SOFA WEST and Brent Kee Young's show all the same week in June. SOFA WEST ( Sculptural Objects and Functional Art) will be held in the beautiful new convention center in Santa Fe June 11- 14, 2009. Brent's show opens on Friday June 12 and he will do a demo on Saturday June 13 at the gallery. If you are even considering a trip to Santa Fe, this is the time to come. There are too many events to list here but I promise you that you can't help but have a wonderful time. The NM Museum Foundation has a list of possible activities to keep you busy. SOFA has an extensive list for VIP ticket holders (let me know if you would like a ticket, jsauer@jsauergallery.com) and the SF Gallery Association is getting in the act also. This city loves an art event and opens its arms broadly to say WELCOME. ART is the heartbeat of the city "different" and you will know you are some place unique the minute you arrive. After living here for over 10 years, I know I couldn't live anywhere else. It is a lifestyle choice, the scenery, the art, the people, the casual approach to life, the honesty of the land, and the architecture created from the earth, and most of all the fascinating people who choose to live here, sometimes at great cost to their professional life. No I do not work for the department of tourism but I could. The combination of SOFA and Santa Fe is unbeatable. Make your reservation at the Eldorado Hotel (official hotel for SOFA and walking distance to the Convention Center) Come and be rejuvenated by this magical place.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Think Tank

On March 18, I traveled to Asheville, NC to attend a Think Tank sponsored by the Center for Creativity in Craft. The attendees came from all segments of the craft/art community and the country. Before I left I thought "how can I be doing this when my mind and heart are on survival in this economy?" No, there were no tips on how to "make it" and I was rather immediately disappointed. I live in the world of practicalities and actions. I even surprised myself at how rooted in "today" I had become. As the weekend unfolded, I was able to reach higher (at least a little) and received more than I gave during the many heady sessions. As I flew home, I still questioned why I had been invited and how would I benefit. Present were 3 PhD's, 2 PhD candidates, several university department heads, professors that had distinguished themselves in some way, the head of a large foundation, a critic, a curator from a major museum, a Macarthur recipient, one studio artist and me. Home and immerced in the daily life of owning a gallery, I have been surprised at how many times I have referenced the conference, the times I have considered the discussions in my decision making process and how exhilarated I can be by processing the many side dialogues. I continue to share ideas born in the conference room with others in my community.
I am delighted to have the proceedings still drifting over me in the most unexpected and unintential ways. I have gained from the many people I became friends with and the road expereinces in the magnificent community of NC. It is a lesson in receptity to what is offered, not to expect immediate gratification or gain, and to take the time to actually think and listen to others outside of your narrow band of operation.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Geoffrey Gorman and I were on the Mayor's radio and television show this week. The discussion centered on the economic impact of the financial crisis on the arts in Santa Fe. The Mayor was very knowledgeable about the importance of the arts to this community and is open to creative ideas but he obviously can't change the world from here. Geoffrey is full of creative ideas like having a graffiti park or converting an empty building into studio and demonstration spaces for artists. We were heard and I am very impressed by the long view the mayor takes and the number of fronts that challenge him daily.
Geoffrey has created another figure since the show opened..."BLUE MAN". In my mind it is a comment on the fact that the New Mexico domestic partnership law failed to pass yesterday. The legislators surrounding Santa Fe voted "yes" but out of state were influenced by the New Mexico Catholic Bishop who publicly encouraged a No" vote.
Tickets went on sale today for a new opera "The Language of Birds". Geoffrey Gorman designed the sets. The opera will be performed Friday March 27 & 28 th at the Lensic Theatre in Santa Fe.

ARTfeast was a marvelous event as it always is. We had many new faces in the gallery and the New Orleans Cuisine was quite a hit. WHOLE FOODS, our partner, can make anything!

Friday, February 20, 2009

We have just completed ARTfeast, a wonderful Santa Fe yearly event, that raises money for art in the public schools. Currently enough money is raised to provides art supplies to all of the public schools. Thirty galleries coupled with 30 restaurants or other kinds of food service and it was a big progressive dinner. Our theme was Mardi Gras and WHOLE FOODS our partner. They did an amazing job with various New Orleans delights from King Cake to Muffaletta sandwiches.

The best part was the joyous feelings of those attending. It was a warm evening with no snow or bitter winds and Canyon Road was filled with happy folks supporting their community. We all needed to feel that camaraderie.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I am very excited to have a marvelous upbeat show installed in the gallery. Geoffrey Gorman is an adventurous, inventive, and brilliant artist to work with. I never know exactly what to expect from him and even when I say" I don't think that sounds too good", the art turns out great. Sometimes artists are thinking far ahead of their dealers and they truly should follow their own paths. Dealers don't know everything. This body of work is right for the times, not created from precious costly materials, and Geoffrey has kept his prices within the reach of many of his admirers. There are great portraits of folks he met while in China for only $49.00 each and he shows how they can be framed handsomely with a frame from Hobby Lobby. The more complex pieces aren't more than $4,400. We shouldn't be thinking of art in terms of $$$ but if you are considering an acquisiton, it might be absolutely the deciding factor. Galleries are not immune to the financial crunch we are in right now and we are welcoming no-interest extended time payments.

Enough about money and more about the art. It is full of fantasy and reality, the animals look very real in posture and expression and yet you are aware that they are constructed from sticks, metal and cloth. Many of the pieces have a ritual and spiritual presence but at the same time make you chuckle at their expression. There are no animals like these. They make excellent pets, never disappoint you, you never have to run out and buy special food, don't have to walk them on sub-zero nights, and they never need the vet. How much better does it get than that!

Please come buy and see the show or check it out on our web site : http://www.jsauergallery.com/sagemoon/artistPages/GGorman.html ....and by the way, there was a picture of one of the monkeys in the calendar section of the New Mexican and a 2 page spread in the Albuquerque Journal.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Geoffrey Gorman Show

I am getting ready for the first show of 2009, Geoffrey Gorman : "ANIMAL INSTINCTS", opening next Friday, Feb. 13. I am thinking about just how to install the show and who should be sitting next to who. Each of these guys has a personality and needs to be placed with friends. Yes, they do come to life if you are around them for any length of time. How else could you want to take home a baboon to live with you! I will post a couple of my favorities, which changes everyday.

Come back to the world of materials and enjoy these with us. Note I am not saying "materialism" but am referring to the joy of experiencing texture, color, form and creativity. It is stunning to think that someone can take the most mundane discarded pieces of daily life and create these lively creatures. How, in Gorman's hands, does junk become endearing?

Stay tuned because there are more images and thoughts to come.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Difficult Times

Filling the role of gallery owner has many glorious and exciting moments but lately it can be very depressing. As like so many other businesses, galleries are going through a difficult time. We have been there before, most recently in 2001. During each crisis I felt that the field of art would never recover and much would be lost forever. There are many institutions that are gone as we once knew them. NEA and artist's grants come to my mind immediately. As a receipent of 2 good sized grants, I can speak frankly about what that allowed artists to do. For me, I had the gift of time and made several pieces of art that were over 6 feet tall. Only a few such opportunities are available today and they are funded by private foundations.

Now the situation seems much more dire. I have artist friends very close to loosing their homes and studios. Most artists don't have health insurance anyway so they don't have that to loose. Many are considering what else they can do if not be an artist. Most are like me and art has been their passion since childhood. They have never known anything else. I have never held a job outside of art. What a tragedy if we were to loose this community of artists! I know some of our population considers art a luxury for the affluent to play with or not of much importance to life. The Arts are so often the first to be cut from school budgets and is the last element in our homes or offices. And yet historically the arts are what cultures are known for and what remains after the petty events of the time melt away. Long after the sofa is gone, the piece of art that was purchased to accompany it is still loved. Those who actively collect can gaze at a piece of work and recall the entire experience of the purchase besides absorbing the wonder of the piece of art. Now more than at any other time in recall, we need the experience of the human hand and spirit. We need to touch the passion of the artist and maybe hold a bit of it for ourselves. I think this is an opportunity to become more human and reconsider our priorities. Our President is taking the lead in thinking creatively and we can follow in our daily lives by appreciating the visual around us. We can give more consideration to the beauty and meaning our eyes bring to us. A work of art will enrich our lives now and continue to do so as long as in our possession.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

First Posting

I am very excited about SOFA West. Yes, SOFA (Sculptural Objects and Functional Art) is going to be in Santa Fe June 10-14, 2009 in our beautiful new convention center. The top SOFA operatives are in town making links with the community. They are top notch professionals and very generous and relational by nature. Last night I was present for their presentation to the Santa Fe Gallery Association meeting. About 45 gallery owners were in attendance. The fair is already about 70% filled with mostly galleries from out of town.

Geoffrey Gorman is helping me set this up. It is a very exciting adventure. We are also discussing his up coming show which opens Feb. 13, 2009. I am giving readers of this blog an early preview of one of my favorite pieces in the show, PATAS. You also might check out his blog geoffreygorman.blogspot.com.

The Beginning

The gallery as seen in our last snow storm. Today it is bright and sunny and cold. January is almost over. How will Feb. be for the gallery business?

this is an experiement to see how this looks.