Touring for art
Calaveras County is rich with creativity. On September 22 and 23, you can experience that creativity up close and personal on the free, self-guided Artists Studio Tour presented by the Calaveras County Arts Council. Free guides are available throughout the county and at the Arts Council in San Andreas; a free map is available for download at calaverasarts.org.
There’s a lot to see. Thirty artists in nineteen locations will exhibit their artwork, opening normally private studios and homes to the public. You can meet the artists, learn about their artwork, and discover treasures that you’ll want to take home. And this year, some of the artists are participating in an abandoned art project; during the week before the tour, keep your eyes peeled for artwork left in public places as a free gift to the finders.
Every corner of the county will be represented. Starting in the Valley Springs area, you’ll find three artists conveniently located off Baldwin Street. Marlene Chapple fills her studio with oil paintings, hammered copper jewelry, ice-dyed scarves, and amazing encaustic work. From there, head over to Sue Carracedo’s studio to be charmed by her colorful watercolors and acrylics. Nearby, Brad Stone is a new addition to Artists Studio Tour, creating impressionistic landscapes and scenes of classic cars and horses in acrylic paint.
A short ride to Mokelumne Hill will bring you to Acme Art on Center Street, where four artists will show their work. Owner Ann Cook makes joyful collages and mosaics, as well as new jewelry she creates from repurposed older jewelry. Deborah Marlene’s glowing watercolors and alcohol ink paintings on tile will share the space, along with Lynne Sutton’s whimsical assemblages and watercolors. New this year, Kevin Brady brings his watercolor illustrations and paintings to Acme Art as well.
A few blocks away on Clark Street, oil painter Sue Smith opens her home and studio to show her strongly designed work, featuring landscapes, animals, and portraits.
It’s a bit of an adventure to Lower Dorray Road in Glencoe, but it’s worth making the beautiful drive to see the four artists on that street. Brenda Montelongo’s jewelry, made from glass beads, silver forms, and stamped metal would be tempting enough, but alongside Sonya Ziegler’s gorgeous paintings, photographs and decorated gourds, Andy Trinkle’s fancy woodworking and Janet Trinkle’s pressed flower pictures, it’s hard to resist.
Above Mountain Ranch, watch Steven Hall make fine pottery from porcelain in his studio as he demonstrates wheel techniques and glazing. And just a short hop away, Black Eagle and MB Black Eagle open their amazing hand-crafted hill top home and studio filled with turquoise jewelry, leather bags, masks, reclaimed artist furniture, and cultural craft work. They’re new on the tour this year; don’t miss this opportunity to meet them.
From Sheep Ranch, Dorrington to Murphys
In Sheep Ranch, Shay Baker is back again with her fanciful paintings and drawings in acrylic, pastel, and watercolor. From there, it’s a popular but twisty drive to Michael Gustavson’s ceramic studio near Murphys on Fullen Drive, where his giant sculptures punctuate incredible views of the mountains.
In Dorrington, Ann Nancy Macomber says that people say they like to start their tours at her studio, where they can see her award-winning acrylic and watercolor paintings. From there, it’s an easy drive down Highway 4 to Arnold, where Ruth Morrow, a venerable, well-known and well-loved artist holds court in her studio that’s chockablock with paintings and found-object assemblage. This year Heidi Gaissert joins the tour, displaying hand-built and wheel-thrown ceramics at her studio on Meadow View Road.
The historic Quyle Kilns will host four artists this year, and not all of them are clay workers. Victoria Fout covers canvases with thick acrylic impasto to create semi-abstract pieces that often have fairy princesses and demons on the same canvas; her miniatures of fantasy animals make terrific gifts. If realism is more your style, George Haskell’s tonalist landscapes and corgi paintings will please you. It’s reasonable to expect ceramics at Quyle Kilns, and Pamela Quyle and Amanda Sedgwick-Maule won’t disappoint with their functional pottery and sculptural pieces.
Just outside of Murphys you’ll find Susan King and Aaron Quinn on Coyote Drive. Susan’s studio will be full of her luminous watercolors and collage, and Aaron, new to the tour this year, will be showing his complex and colorful ink and watercolor drawings.
The elegance of letterpress printing is unmatched in our modern world, and Ryan Anderson aims to bring it back to Murphys in his print shop and studio off French Gulch Road. Come learn about this vintage art form and take home posters and cards that will inspire.
A special preview reception with light refreshments will be at the Arts Council Gallery on Main Street in San Andreas on September 15, 3 to 5 p.m.
At Michel Olson’s studio just off Appaloosa Lane between Angels Camp and Copperopolis, there’s more to see than art, although Sharon Strong’s otherworldly masks and sculptures will anchor the site in artwork. But Olson, a skilled blacksmith who will be demonstrating his craft, has created gardens of standing stones and outdoor assemblage, plus a collection of gypsy wagons. Vicki Burnham Wilson’s kinetic and motorized art vehicles will give the site, and the tour, plenty of zoom.
September 22-23, 2018
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Calaveras County Arts Council
Our goal is to support, nourish, and awaken the arts in our community.