Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Okay, officially May Day was yesterday, but get ready for a big May Day Weekend that's all abloom with local art and art events.

Check out the First Friday Art Tour Friday night to get in the mood, but that's only the aperitif. On Saturday and Sunday (May 5 and 6), welcome back the Santa Cruz Clay collective for their 8th annual show and sale at Bargetto Winery. Participating artists include Jacquie Walton (that's her gorgeous dragonfly vase), whose Arts & Crafts Movement-inspired art pottery is streamlined, tactile, sophisticated and yet simply beautiful.

Also on the bill are two generations of the uniquely talented Hennig family—Dan and Laurie, and Iver and Jennifer—with their antic animal sculptures, reptile and bird bowls, and playfully surreal ceramic statuary.  You'll find the functional pottery of SC favorites Steven and Bonnie Barisof and George  Dymesich, the figurative ceramic sculptures of Nora Sarkissian, the slip-decorated pottery of Tasha High, and much, much more—20 booths in all, from the Bargetto parking lot into the charming, creekside wine-tasting courtyard. Showtime is 11 am to 5 pm, Saturday and Sunday.

Speaking of collectives, the 17th Avenue art studios in beautiful midtown Live Oak open their doors this weekend for their annual Spring Show. Look for a variety of paintings, sculpture, drawings, art papermaking, encaustic, and jewelry. Or just poke around; it's always fun to see who's new in the complex. Doors open Saturday and Sunday, 11 am to 6 pm.

Over on the Westside, there's a new Art For Art show at the R. Blitzer Gallery. Co-curated by artists Dee Hooker and Sara Friedlander, the guerrilla artists of AFA stage collective local shows a few times a year, with a percentage of the proceeds going to to the Santa Cruz Artists' Assistance Rlief Fund (SCAARF), which provides funding for local artists facing career-threatening emergencies.

There are 35 artists in the show, which features painting, drawing, photography, scupture and other 3D media, jewelry, and wearable art. FFAT reception is 5-9 pm, Friday, May 4. Artists Reception is Saturday, May 5, 11 am to 5 pm. The show runs at the Blitzer through May 26.

And while you're out there don't miss the annual May Day Garden and Art Show at  mosaic artist Nancy Howells' Painted Chair Studio (421 Gharkey Street, SC). Tour Nancy's beautiful wrap-around garden and enjoy the work of 15 participating artists, including Alena Byrnes with her distinctive jewelry, the "Serendipty" jams  and preserves of Lynette and Kristen Cederquist, these colorful Kimekomi "Everyday Ornaments" by Ann Ostermann, and many, many more.  (Salient tip: Mother's Day is just around the corner!)

Hours are 10 am to 5 pm, Saturday and Sunday. I'll see you there!

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