Amato Gallery of Artists Gala Opening

I've got a BIG project I've been working on that I haven't had time to blog much about. I've been fueled by adrenaline, I'm losing sleep over it, but my energy is VERY high and hopeful. In my post on Jan 19th, I mentioned a gallery space that I found in my community. So far, I've spoken to 10 incredible artists to come in on the opportunity and together we are hosting our first Gala Opening. The Gala event is Feb 12th, and we will have wine tasting, fine art, floral work, and fine chocolate....the perfect stop for the guys on Valentines Day.

Many changes have already been put into place to help the business owner convert the space. New lights, new paint, a hanging system is in place, new sculpture and ceramics are in place and also some paintings adorn the walls. We have all had a hand in the improvements, even helping to pay for them. I've been looking for fine artists whose work conveys "Oregon" or has a representational flair to it. There is still room for more artists as the space improves, and older existing product gets sold. Our city really needs something like this, and we are all very encouraged by it. Click on this link to an open invitation on Facebook. Hope to see you there!

Artists to date:

Beth O'Mahony
John Wisener


Best of America Pastel Series!

It's here, it's here!

Today I received my copy of The Best of America Pastel Artists Volume II.
It's a soft bound, glossy book. You know the kind. It's really nice too. I didn't realize what this really meant until I opened up the book and saw the work of pastelists Dawn Emerson, Alan Flattman, and Albert Handell! Gosh, I'm hanging with the big boys now. But as every art publication goes, it's stuffed with other accomplished pastelists whose names may not ring a bell, like me. My work is presented in the "America Pastel A ~ J" book, but there is also an "America Pastel K ~Z" book that completes the set.

Two of my pieces were selected for this publication and announced back in August of '09 and the book is now available for purchase. You can get yours here. for $42.95 + s/h.


Albright's Donuts, Santa Cruz

"Albright's Donuts, Santa Cruz" 12x9, Pastel on sanded paper

It's been a while since I've been able to post a new painting! I've been so busy with many exciting things in my art community, it seemed like every time I picked up a pastel to finish this piece, I had another phone call! Can I grow another arm please?

Anyway, this little gem is from my trip to Santa Cruz last summer. This coastal community has it's characteristics that identify it as Santa Cruz. Sleepy, older buildings dot the main streets, with side streets full of bungalows from the 40's and 50's. A nice, sunny area to live! This little donut shop is on the corner of Water and Magnolia Streets, just down the street from my brother's home.

So, what's been going on in my art community?
I came across an add on CraigsList for a gallery in my community, and so I had to check out who was doing this new venture. You see, our downtown area doesn't have a nice gallery space to hang our work. But in the city of Portland there are plenty of galleries, but you have to go a distance to get there. This spot is just 2 miles away from where I live, and the shop owner is changing her business into a gallery space that works in conjunction with her floral and wine shop. Naturally, I want a part of this because the location is so perfect and the building is incredible! So I've been helping the store owner convert her shop into this gallery idea along with many other incredible artists. Organizing something like this is fun, but it eats up precious painting time. So that's it! Wish us luck in this adventure, for it is a temporary one that could turn into a permanent space.

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Hanging at City Hall

Contrary to the Clint Eastwood Westerns, the title "Hanging at City Hall" does sound a little like a hanging, but it's not. This morning I was at Portland City Hall installing my work for a second round, at Commissioner Dan Saltzman's office. Portland City Hall is classically built with marble and oak. I think this was one of the fastest installations I have ever done, finishing in a little over an hour! You can view the work from 8am~5pm, Monday through Friday on the 2nd floor for the month of January.

"Other Side of Paulina" 8x10" Pastel on sanded paper

On another note, I've had this painting around for some time and had put it into the "I'll get around to that later" pile. It needed work! So I pulled this one out and re-worked the pastel by adding a little more color and contrast. I am donating this piece to my daughter's orchestra, OPAYCO "Winter Cheer" annual Fundraising Concert scheduled for January 16th in Lake Oswego.


Lavender Laps, 11x15

"Lavender Laps" 11x15" Pastel on sanded paper

Sometimes the winter gets a little too cold for me and so to remedy this, I sometimes like to post something that takes me back to the heat of the summer. This one was painted Plein Air a couple of summers ago in late July when the Lavender farmers are getting ready to harvest their fragrant herb. Oooooh, I can just smell the heavy scent of the lavender and hear the bumbling bees....and just feel the hot wind on my skin. Are we there yet Scotty?

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