Friday, December 11, 2009

Cascabel Community Fair 2009

The Cascabel Community Festival was last weekend. Cascabel is a ting community along the San Pedro River, east of Tucson and north of Benson. This was my fourth year as a vendor, but I have been to Cascabel many, many times since the early 1980s. Here is a story about Cascabel in the Tucson Examiner.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Tucson Examiner: 'As Is' Art Yard Sale at Central Arts Gallery's new location

Central Arts Gallery moved out of its Congress street location last weekend. This weekend, it will reopen at its new location in the Citizen's Warehouse. Here is a link to an Examiner article about CAG's first event in its new home-- "As Is Art Yard Sale."

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tucson Examiner: What Is Our Shared Vision for Downtown Tucson?

Downtown Tucson has gone through several boom and bust cycles since I moved here in 1981. In the past week, three galleries on Congress Street closed their doors--Dinnerware Artspace, Central Arts Gallery, and Rocket Gallery. A sign of a bad economy? No, they were all viable art enterprises. These three galleries, Tooley's coffee shop, and three other businesses are closing their storefronts on Congress to make way for a sports bar. To read more, check out my story in the Tucson Examiner.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Wind Dancer Design One-Day Sale - Central Arts Gallery

On Saturday, November 21, I will be having a one-woman special show at Central Arts Gallery from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. The exhibit will feature my jewelry and mosaic designs. All earrings will be buy-one-get-one-free.

Central Arts Gallery is located at 274 E. Congress St. There is free parking on the street and in back of the gallery. Come on down! Buy local this holiday season.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Swinging in the Old Pueblo

Anyone who has followed this blog knows that I am an avid dancer and that I have been dancing all of my life. have written several posts about dancing in Tucson.

Last week I posted just two articles on about dancing venues in Tucson-- an article about the Tucson Swing Dance Club and an article about Mr. Boogie Woogie.

Here we are dancing to Mr. Boogie Woogie last Friday night. He is a phenomenal boogie woogie piano player from The Netherlands. He'll be in Tucson until mid-November. Check out the Examiner article for a link to his schedule.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Are You Ready for Halloween?

Halloween is not just a day in Tucson, it's a season! Are you ready? Here are some costume tips for adults in my latest article in the Tucson Examiner.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Put on Your Art Walkin' Shoes

Put on your art walkin' shoes for two major art walks this weekend-- The Glow in Oracle and The Big Picture in Tucson.

The Glow is a lighted art walk by the full moon. Artists primarily from Oracle and Tucson exhibited lighted sculpture for the walk. In addition to the art, there will be outdoor music venues. Check out the website like for photos from past years, including my La Mano Mas Poderosa mosaic shrine from last year. The Glow is Friday and Saturday night from 7 - 11 p.m. at the Triangle L Ranch. Two of my shrines-- Letting Go and Here Comes the Sun-- will be shown in the Adobe Gallery. I also have a number of pieces in the Triangle L Gift Shop.

The Big Picture is Saturday night from 6-10p.m. in downtown Tucson. More than a dozen Central Tucson Gallery Association member galleries will be open-- including Central Arts Gallery, where my work will be showing. Check out the CTGA website link for a list of member galleries. Now that the 4th Avenue underpass is open, it's much easier and safer to visit the galleries along 6th Street, as well as those along Congress Street.

Be aware that Club Crawl is also happening downtown on Saturday night. For those of you who like art and music-- this is a perfect. For people who want to bypass the music, some galleries on Congress may have their back doors, allowing access from the parking lots south of Congress.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

True Stories Opens at Central Arts Gallery

True Stories, the latest exhibit at the Central Arts Gallery, opens this Saturday, October 3, with an artists' reception from 6-9 p.m.

It will be a big night in downtown Tucson with the Club Crawl and the Central Tucson Gallery Association gallery tour. If you don't want to buy a wrist band for the music, come early for the gallery scene. Or, if you're into music and art, downtown is the place to be this Saturday night with multiple art galleries and multiple music venues.

At Central Arts Gallery, I am exhibiting a collage of 10 environmental photos entitled True Stories from Earth. Sunset on the Andes (above) and other images from Hawaii, Colombia, Colorado, and Arizona are included. The Earth's true story is one of diversity, survival, interdependence, resilience, death, and renewal. It's our responsibility to teach this story to future generations.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Is Sex Becoming Too Expensive?

$1500 per year for sex? Is sex too expensive? Read my latest article in the Tucson Examiner and learn what you can do about it.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Gloves and hankies: lessons from the 1918 flu pandemic

Will the H1N1 flu be as bad as the 1918 influenza pandemic? Who knows? Here are some flue prevention tips from my Grandma, pictured here with Grandpa. They survived the 1918 flu.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Drinking Liberally

If you're interested in progressive issues, Drinking Liberally is the place to be in Tucson on a Thursday night. Check out my article on Drinking Liberally in the Tucson Examiner.

Tucson Examiner: You Know You're a Baby Boomer When...

Here is the link to a humorous top 20 list about Baby Boomers and old hippies. I wrote this for the Tucson Examiner. Feel free to forward and comment; I know there are items that I forgot. Several readers have already added more items. Enjoy.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tucson Examiner: Art in downtown Tucson this weekend

There are several great art events happening in downtown Tucson this weekend (September 11-12). Here is a link to an article I wrote for the Tucson Examiner.

I recently joined the staff of, a national citizen journalism project. Look for more Examiner posts on Muse Views in the future.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Celebrate the Underpass with Underground Art

It seems as if the 4th Avenue underpass has been under construction forever!

This Thursday, August 20, hundreds of Tucsonans will celebrate the opening of the wider, brighter underpass which will reconnect 4th Avenue and Congress Street.

The Central Arts Gallery invites everyone to celebrate the opening of the underpass with Underground Art.

Express yourself by creating your own underground art. Central Arts Gallery will set up tables on the sidewalk in front of the gallery at 274 E. Congress St. from 3:30 - 7 p.m. The gallery is providing paper, markers, crayons, poster paint, and sidewalk chalk; you provide your creativity and ideas.

How do you feel about the 4th Avenue underpass finally opening? How do you feel about downtown? About art downtown? About construction downtown? How is all of this change affecting your life? This is your opportunity to express your joy, sadness, frustration, fear, excitement, whatever in words or pictures.

Underground Art created at this event will be hung in a special display at Central Arts Gallery through September 5. It will be displayed concurrently with Erotic Stimulus Package, the gallery’s latest show. Underground Art created by Central Arts Gallery members also will be exhibited.

Trash Can in Paradise, Pahoa, Hawaii (above) is one of my photographs which will be in the Underground Art exhibit.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Erotic Stimulus Package

Erotic Stimulus Package-- the latest exhibit at the Central Arts Gallery-- opens Saturday, August 1 and runs through September 26.

Four of my photographs, including: Holding On (above), Afternoon Repose, Thursday Morning, and Bound for Love are included in the show.

As an extra treat, CAG artists will be serving banana splits at the opening from 6-9p.m.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Leonine Life: Light My Fire!

Tucson's fourth Ignite Tucson event will be this Thursday, July 30.

For those of you who missed my February presentation on Lovers I've Never Met, you'll have a chance this week to see my new presentation on The Leonine Life-- honoring the sun in Leo. It will include some tips on getting along with the King of Beasts and tidbits about international and local celebrity Leos.

IGNITE Tucson is an evening of 5 minute Power Point presentations on innovative topics. The last event was a blast. There were several humorous presentations mixed in with a few serious ones. Ignite Tucson will be 7-8:30pm at The Screening Room, 127 E. Congress St. in downtown Tucson. For a $5 donation, you get an evening of eclectic entertainment and all the popcorn you can gobble. If you're thirsty, there's a cash bar.

Come downtown and celebrate the sun-- and my birthday!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Chubasco: Water, Water Everywhere!

The Chubasco! exhibit will open at Raices Taller 222 Art Gallery and Workshop on Saturday, July 25. This annual show celebrates the monsoon season in Tucson. My photograph-- Watercourse Way-- will be among those on exhibit. I took this picture on the beach in Playa Blanca, Colombia.

The artists' reception is 7-10 p.m. at Raices, 218 E. 6th Street on July 25. Many of the artists will be in attendance-- moi aussi. Who knows? Maybe it will rain for the occasion! Come on down and check out a gallery-full of art on the theme of water, rain, and monsoons. Food and drinks will be available by donation. Support the arts in Tucson!

Chubasco! will run from July 25 - September 12, 2009.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Blogger in Paradise, part 2

I'm back from Hawaii, but there is a lot more to say about the trip-- the 2 sides of the Big Island, the surf, the turtles, Japanese fashion in Honolulu-- and many more photos. I swear I'll post more once I get my photo collection straightened out.

For now, check out my facebook Hawaii album!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Blogger in Paradise, part 1

Greetings from Hawaii-- where time means nothing and I've forgotten what day of the week it is.

I arrived in Honolulu last Friday (June 26) and met up with Alex and her friends Stephanie (who lives in Tucson) and Rachel (who lives in Honolulu). Rachel was gracious enough to let us stay in her tiny Honolulu apartment for a few days while we explored Waikiki (above) and Waimanalo Beaches (below).
Here is Alex strolling out to the Pacific Ocean with a boogie board. At right, we're waiting for the bus to take us to the beach.Waikiki was nice, but strewn with tourists snapping photos and watching the locals surf and boogie board. Waimanolo was much prettier and less crowded-- far more locals than tourists.

On Sunday, we flew into Hilo Airport on the Big Island, where I rented a house for 10 days. The house looked gorgeous on the Internet. It is very pretty and well-appointed in real life but also very close to the lava flow-- which is probably why it was so cheap to rent and also probably why there is a for sale sign in the front yard. The location was not what I had expected; I really wanted a view of the water from the porch. The only view of the ocean is from the second story meditation room-- and only if you're standing up. (This seems like a real architectural mistake. It's a great meditation room, but while you're seated, all you see is the wall.) The house is very comfortable and the location-- at the edge of the lava--is very quiet. It was a bit disconcerting when we first drove to Kalapana and found the road blocked with lava and an "enter at your own risk" sign. I haven't walked out to the lava flow yet, but my vacation mates have.

Our first day here-- after we found the house-- we went to the drumming circle on Kehena Beach, a black sand clothing-optional beach. (I was really surprised to see so many clothes on the clothing optional beach but whatever.) The drum circle was the quintessential old hippie meets young hippie experience. There were probably 20 or more drummers and other percussionists plus some random other musicians-- one guy on a flute, one on the ukulele, and one on trumpet. Alex and I and a few other women danced around some while they played and others watched the drumming, the dancing, and the ocean waves.

The drumming started to wind down as the sun began to set, so we decided to try to find the Hare Krishna Farm for the regular Sunday night feast, gathering and inspirational message. Again, we drove and drove, but finally stumbled upon the right one-lane country road to take us there. I wish I had had my camera for these two events, but I didn't think pictures would be appropriate.

The kirtan was awesome! I had always wanted to go to one of those in Tucson but have never made it. The Krishna band -- led by the main guru singing and playing guitar-- really rocked. In addition to the guitar player, there was an Indian woman on electric keyboard, an electric guitarist, a ukulele player, and a conga player. The guru led the all-ages crowd in several call and response chants. Everyone danced, swayed, hopped and/or meditated to the music which filled the room. There were a couple of short prayers-- with everyone kneeling with our heads touching the floor-- and a short Krishna lesson about karma, past lives, and the unity of all living things. (It went right along with the Buddhist Tantra book that I had just finished.) Afterwards, we had a giant vegan feast-- lentils, rice, greens, homemade pizza, chocolate cake, and water. I was stuffed. Alex introduced Stephanie and me to Guru Greg (who has a Krishna name which I have forgotten and probably couldn't spell anyway). He and King Coconut-- one of the main men in the drumming circle-- both remembered her from when she lived here six years ago.

On Monday, we went to the warm pond to swim in the morning. It was a luxurious thermal pond right off the ocean. After swimming, we went to Big Ed's Farm, where Alex lived for six months, six years ago. That was an eye-opener. Since she ran out of batteries not long after arrival, I had not seen many pictures of the place. If you look up "rustic" in Wikipedia, there will be a picture of The Farm. It is basically acreage of weeds, trees, lean-tos, and abandoned vehicles. People find The Farm through Willing Workers on Organic Farms (WWOOFing). The idea behind WWOOFing is that people volunteer to work on organic farms in exchange for room and board-- no pay. There doesn't seem to be much work going on on Ed's Farm. Mostly college students hang around and live on meager rations until they're tired of eating rice, beans, and mangoes, taking showers with a hose, washing their clothes by hand, and swatting flies by day and mosquitoes by night. A rustic lifestyle in paradise is an experience that they will talk about for the rest of their lives, though. (Above, Alex and Stephanie pose in The Farm's open-air kitchen.)

After The Farm, we went to Lava Tree National Park, which was very beautiful but paled in comparison to the farming adventure and swimming in the warm pond. We ended the day with a drink a a dive bar in downtown Pahoa.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Renewal and Evolution

Saturday, June 6 marked the one year anniversary of the Central Arts Gallery, a cooperative gallery in downtown Tucson. The new exhibit, Renewal, marks the culmination of a year of ups and downs. Although the gallery membership has changed several times during the year, a core group of artists--who are now friends-- has kept the gallery alive and fostered its evolution. I'm proud to say that I am a member of that core group and proud of what Central Arts Gallery has accomplished this year. It hasn't always been easy-- far from it-- but it has been rewarding.

I have three photographs in the Renewal show: "Watercourse Way, Playa Blanca, Colombia,""Still Live on the Beach, Playa Blanca, Colombia" (above), and "Abundance, Pinos Altos, New Mexico." I also have a few pieces on the Small Works Wall: "Bano en Paraiso, Playa Blanca, Colombia"(at right), "Wandering, San Carlos, Mexico," and "Flow with Me."

Renewal will be at Central Arts Gallery, 274 E. Congress, in Tucson from June 6 - July 25, 2009. (My apologies to Spanish speakers. I couldn't figure out how to do a tilde on blogger.)

Friday, May 01, 2009

Mujeres Exhibit Opens at Raices

The Fifth Annual Mujeres, Mujeres, Mujeres exhibit will open at Raices Taller 222 Art Gallery and Workshop tomorrow, May 2. This is always a great show with many eclectic works by women artists. I have been attending this exhibit for years, but this is the first time my artwork has been included.

Nude Blinds will be at Raices from May 2 through June 13. The opening is Saturday evening from 7-9 p.m. The work of more than 40 Southern Arizona women artists will be included in the show. Come down and see what the gurlz have to offer.

Saturday is also the First Saturday Central Tucson Gallery Association Art Walk. In addition to Raices, my work also will be showing at the Central Arts Gallery, where The Same Story exhibit continues through June. Follow the CTGA link here for a list of member galleries. Most-- in not all-- will be open Saturday night for the art walk.

Mom, President Obama, and Corporate America say, "Wash Your Hands"

A good capitalist can always find a way to make a buck-- even at the beginning of a worldwide pandemic. For the past week, the swine flu has been all the rage in the news-- new cases popping up in different countries and dozens of deaths in Mexico, where it may have originated. On the news, you see people trudging along the streets wearing masks.

Today, in my e-mail box I received a three-day coupon for anti-bacterial hand soap from Bath and Body Works. The headline -- in hot pink-- read: Mom says, "Wash Your Hands!" Of course, the ad is capitalizing on two events-- Mother's Day (next week) and the flu.

How clever of them to turn this problem (a potential worldwide pandemic) into a marketing opportunity. Although they're not using any scare-tactics about the flu specifically in their ad, the "wash your hands" mantra is being repeated continuously by the media and public officials. The only scare tactic in the ad, really, is the short-term lifespan on the coupon (three days)-- buy now!

I must admit, I did print out the coupon, and maybe, I'll wander past a mall sometime in the next three days and take advantage of the sale. I really like Bath and Body Works lotion-- smells great and has a really rich texture-- but I almost never buy it because it's soooooooo expensive.

I didn't go for the online shopping suggestion in the ad. Who buys hand lotion or hand soap online? I want to smell it and touch it-- duh. Also, I'm a cheapskate. I don't like to pay for shipping, and in order to get free shipping, you have to buy $65 worth. That's a heck of a lot of lotion and soap. Who would do this? Maybe, if you're a guy with several sisters, daughters, ex-wives, and/or girlfriends-- who all happen to be moms-- this would be a good deal. You could polish off your Mother's Day shopping with a few clicks and not have to leave your computer. No last minute trips to Fry's next Sunday to grab a bouquet and a Happy Mothers' Day balloon!

Normally that would be the end of this clever post, but I just looked at my e-mail again. Not to be outdone by Bath and Body Works, I just received an ad from Victoria's Secret for lotion (no anti-bacterial soap). At VS-- again a three-day coupon-- and for $50, you can get free shipping.

Now the question is: do you want to buy $65 of lotion + antibacterial soap OR $50 of lotion + stylish clothes and fancy lingerie for Mom? And if you procrastinate, you can always go to Fry's next Sunday. They'll have plenty of flowers on hand.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Carbon Neutral: Waste Not, Want Not

Tomorrow-- April 22-- is Earth Day. It's one day a year when some of us think about the Earth, what humankind is doing to it, and how to ameliorate the impact of civilization on our environment. We used to manufacture goods in the US, but we have become a country of debit-ridden consumers. Waste and hyper-consumerism have been taking a toll on our environment for decades. Now, our current economic crisis has brought to light the folly of our wasteful, short-term, profit-oriented, consumer-driven lifestyle. Maybe this crisis is a good thing? As a country, maybe we needed a womp upside the head to wake us up?

To celebrate Earth Day and demonstrate art can be created from items that most people would discard as junk, Dinnerware Artspace is hosting the Carbon Neutral exhibit.

I have submitted a few pieces for this show:
- Lighting the Way (above) is a sculpture made from discarded solar tubes (from my home remodel in 2007), shapely Trader Joe's soup cans, and LED light rope.

- Re-cycle is a mobile made from bicycle parts and other seemingly useless metal do-dads.

- Tiles of Tiles (below) is a three part tile piece made from discarded porcelain, terracotta, and natural stone floor tiles. It can be used as a trivet or a table top, or it can be mortared into a wall or floor.

- Last but not least is a quilt that I made from old blue jeans. With a blue jean top and a flannel remnant backing, this is by far the warmest quilt I've ever made.

The opening artists' reception for Carbon Neutral is Wednesday, 5-8 p.m., and the show runs through Saturday, April 25. I guarantee the show will open your eyes to new uses of items you may be discarding.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Downtown: The Same Story But Not the Same OLD Story

Downtown will be hopping tomorrow night, with many galleries will be open for the Central Tucson Gallery Association's First Saturday event.

Here are a few gallery highlights for Saturday evening, April 4.

The Same Story opens at the Central Arts Gallery, on Congress St., tomorrow with an artists' reception from 6-9 p.m. I have three threesomes (photos, not performance art pieces-- tee hee) in this show: Wild Thing, I Think You Move Me is dance in motion; Caution: Drummers warns of the perils of dating drummers; and Downtown is a funky tribute to downtown Tucson.

I peeked at the show before it was hung, and there is a wide range of art, as usual. A few artists have chosen this theme to make political statements. Carlos Encinas' Dollar Store Art display presents a sarcastic view of the cheap-is-good mentality. Patrick McCardle's portrait of President Obama being threatened by a snarling bulldog is thought-provoking when you consider the pervasive in-fighting in Washington, DC. The Central Arts Gallery show will also feature an art raffle.

Pollos de Pueblo continues at Dinnerware Artspace on Congress St.. If you were too cheap to pay $5 to see the chickens last Saturday, you can check out this fun show for free on April 4, the closing day. This is a fun show with many eclectic interpretations of the theme.

Fuerte continues at Raices Taller 222, on 6th Street. This show commemorates Cesar Chavez's birthday, which was March 31. The Raices event starts at 5 p.m. with a "Pay the Rent" potluck.

Many of Tucson's galleries are struggling to keep their doors open these days. Please help Tucson's artists keep our art scene alive by buying art, attending events that request a modest entry fee, or simply throwing a few bucks in a donation jar. Every little bit helps.

This is only a small sample of exhibits that will be open. I hope you will take a stroll downtown-- along Congress and 6th Streets-- to enjoy our lovely spring weather and Tucson's vibrant art scene.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Close Up the Honky Tonks-- Not

I began dancing in honky tonks at a very young age. My parents were both dancers. In fact, they met on a blind date at a big band swing dance in the 1940s at the Cedar Point ballroom and danced together for 40+ years until my father moved on-- to that big ballroom in the sky.

I can remember being 3 or 4 years old and going to the bar with my father and my brother who was a babe in arms. He and some of his friends were laid off-- during a past recession. My mother had gone back to work to help support the family, and Dad was our caretaker. On occasion, in the afternoon, Dad would pack us into the Chevy and go downtown for a beer-- well, probably more than one. Dad laid Jim-- wrapped up in his baby blanket-- on the bar, and I socialized with the bar flies. The geezers at the bar would give me money for the juke box. I would punch in the numbers and dance around the bar. (This begs several questions. 1) Is this how I learned my letters and numbers? Play C17, Pammie! 2) What was my favorite song? Elvis? Johnny Cash? Karl Perkins? There was a lot of great music back in the mid-1950s. 3) Did God make honky tonk angels? Or not? 4) Was I born to be a honky tonk woman?)

My parents used to have dance parties in the late 1950s and early 1960s in our basement-- a cool place in more ways than one-- or at my Aunt Nan's place "at The Lake." (Lake Erie, that is). When the parties were at our house, my cousins and I would sneak down the cellar steps to watch our parents dance, drink, and smoke cigarettes. Since the Powers/Fox descendants are English/Irish (respectively), there was always a bar set up at the dance parties. The favorite of the Powers clan was bourbon (most likely from Kentucky-- like Jim Beam or Heaven Hill) + whatever mixer they had (probably Pepsi). "The cousins" were supposed to be sleeping, but hello, who could sleep with all of that loud music? Since I was the oldest cousin, I most likely led the other six astray. (I gotta find those pictures of my parents, aunts, and uncles swing dancing.)

After my Dad passed, Mom said her dancing days were over, but I hope my she still dances around the living room when she plays He'll Have to Go or her Patsy Cline 8 track tapes.

Anyone who knows me or has read this blog knows that I dance at least twice a week-- usually more. You name it, I dance it-- east coast swing, west coast swing, blues dancing, multiple varieties of two-step, waltz, salsa, merengue, bachata, villanato, cha-cha, free style-- even the polka (which I was born to dance, since I am half German and grew up in Northern Ohio).

In recent years, I have really gotten into going to The Maverick-- one of the best honky tonks in Tucson, as far as I'm concerned. Growing up, I was not into country music-- at all. Although I remember my father playing Johnny Cash on the record player in the late 1950s, country, bluegrass, and, of course, polka, were were totally un-cool in the 1960s. For me, music was the Rolling Stones, The Doors, and Chicago blues (especially Paul Butterfield) back then. In the 1970s, I remember listening to Merle Haggard some. (Us hippies got a kick out of I'm Proud to Be an Okie from Muskogee. And I'll let you imagine what we did while singing along!)

I really developed a taste for country and western music when I worked in Benson in the early 1980s and could get only the Benson radio station (KAVV-- The Cave) or the Wilcox station on the radio in my office. Listening to The Cave every day, I began to appreciate country music-- for the danceable beat and the creative lyrics. Now, of course, I get my country fix at The Maverick, the Cactus Moon (now that Robert Moreno is there), and on KXCI-- particularly Rose Lady's show.

Recently, I purchased a wonderful CD-- Dwight Sings Buck-- Dwight Yoakum, that is. This is a great CD of classic country songs. I love his rendition of Close Up the Honky Tonks. Unfortunately, Dwight-- or most likely his record label-- doesn't want to share, so I can't embed it. I really like his version, but I take issue with the way the honky tonk woman is portrayed in this video. Hello, she should be wearing jeans.

In some ways, this song reminds me of my dancing girlfriends and myself, but I believe that any one of us would turn in the honky tonk dancin' for a steady dance partner.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Pollos de Pueblo

Saturday, March 28, Dinnerware Artspace will host Pollos de Pueblo-- an eclectic art event loosely based on chickens-- chickens themselves, chicken dinners, chicken legs, chicken feathers, chicken feet, chicken dance-- you name it-- maybe even chicks in feather boas. Who knows?

Initially, I wasn't going to enter this show. As George Constanza would say, "Chickens? I got nothin'." But when I heard that the topic would be "broadly interpreted", I decided to submit my recent photograph entitled "Eggheads" (above). These are cascarones.

Pollos de Pueblo will run from March 28 - April 4 at Dinnerware. For more details, check out the Dinnerware website or the story in Thursday's Caliente, which I can't link it because the Star won't let me! (Haven't they heard that the web is all about sharing?)

Rumor has it some live chickens from Dunbar Springs will make a guest appearance at the opening on March 28, from 6-9pm. This may be the first time in 100 years that real chickens have walked the streets of downtown Tucson. Don't miss it!

Any, while you're downtown, stop by the Central Arts Gallery (just east of Dinnerware) and catch the closing night of Spirit's Journey. (I'll be at both places.)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Lovers I've Never Met

Friday evening, February 27, is the third Ignite Tucson, and I'm going to give one of the presentations. My topic-- Lover's I've Never Met-- focuses on men whom I've met online but have never met in person. For the most part, I've never even seen pictures of them, but, based upon common interests, we have formed friendships in cyberspace.

During the past year, I have met dozens of men and women online and have dated several-- men, that is. What did I learn from my year of online dating? Here are some random thoughts on cyber love...

You Don't Have to Pay to Play. There are many ways to meet interesting people online (eg, blogging, listservs, social networking) without joining a dating site with a monthly fee. Investigate before you offer your credit card number.

Profiles. You really don't have to write much of a profile to get dates. In fact, a great picture or two and a few, well-chosen words is all you need. Depending upon what type of person you are seeking, you should carefully choose a screen name and a headline for your profile. I found that leaving everything else the same, I got different responses by playing around with these seemingly minor profile components.

Lies. Both men and women lie on their profiles. I read a research article in the New York Times about a study of social networking and online dating websites. It said that men lie about their height and age, while women lie about their weight. Being the naive and trusting person that I am, when I first started participating in online dating (again) a year ago, I was surprised how many younger men were corresponding with me. Eventually, I found out they weren't younger at all; they were just lying about their ages. One guy I dated even lied about his astrological sign. Now I study the photos and don't pay any attention to the listed age. A hint to the guys: if the woman has big '80s hair in her profile photo, it's most likely a photo from the '80s.

Chemistry. What is that little sparkle that you see in one person's eyes but not in another's? Chemistry goes beyond the physical and the intellectual, in my opinion, and into the primal realm. There is some hidden attraction that I feel for some men (or women) but not others. It is inexplicable but real. Unfortunately, online chemistry doesn't always translate to in-person chemistry.

Compatibility. Chemistry may get you into bed with someone, but for anything more than a few dates, a basic compatibility in lifestyles is necessary. Being an old hippie, I try to be accepting of others-- regardless of their social class, education, religion, race, sexual orientation, or ice cream flavor, BUT accepting them for who they are doesn't mean I want to have an intimate relationship with them.

Alternative Lifestyles. For years, social conservatives have been wringing their hands about gay marriage and trying to demonize gays and Lesbians and separate them from the mainstream as "different from us". Well, I'm here to tell the Bible-thumpers in Kansas that there are LOTS of other lifestyles that are "different" from yours! I was married for 18 years, so I figured I had some things to learn about dating when I emerged back on the scene, but I had no idea there were so many combinations of relationships out there.

Emotional Unavailability. This is a concept that I have experienced many times in my dating life but didn't have a label for until recently. During the past year, I've met (online and in person) a number of men who are available to just about anyone physically but emotionally available to no one. By the time one reaches my age, you know many people -- both men and women-- who have had unhappy relationships and/or marriages that have taken psychological tolls on them, leaving them very wary of involvement. It is my hope that these people continue to grow past their hurt.

Be Realistic and Be Yourself. Often people jump into relationships with the first person who pays attention to them, they latch onto that person, and they pretend they are someone else to gain acceptance. Not a good idea. One of the most important lessons I have learned is to be myself. I accept myself and my body, and I believe I project this self-confidence. I don't hide my true self, and I hope the people whom I meet are not hiding their true selves either.

The Four Agreements. This is a great book, and I think the basic agreements are helpful in developing any type of relationship: be true to your word; don't take anything personally; assume nothing; and always do your best.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Wandering Through Dreams: on Congress Street

Spirit's Journey, the latest exhibit at the Central Arts Gallery, will open this coming Saturday, February 7, 2009, with an artists' reception from 6-9 p.m.

Two of my pieces will be included in this show: Wandering Through Dreams (pictured here) and La Mano Mas Poderosa mosaic shrine. I'm proud to say that both of them are on display in the windows of the gallery. I'm also exhibiting jewelry and smaller clay pieces at the gallery for this show, which runs through March 28.

The Central Arts Gallery opening is just one of many scheduled for this Saturday downtown. Many galleries along Congress Street and 6th Street will be open this weekend as part of the Art Safari, organized by the Central Tucson Gallery Association. So, if you missed seeing Bound for Love at the opening of the Amores Perros erotic art show two weeks ago, you can catch it on Saturday at Raices Gallery.

Come downtown and support the arts in Tucson! Here is a list of participating galleries from the Tucson Citizen and a very thorough write-up in the Tucson Weekly.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Central Arts Gallery: Born Again

As many of you know, I have been a member of the Central Arts Gallery (CAG) since it began in May 2008. CAG is a cooperative gallery whose membership has fluctuated during the past 8 months. As with all cooperative ventures, it has not always been very cooperative. One of the inherent problems (or benefits, depending upon how you see it) with cooperatives is that everyone has a voice, and there is really no strong leader, no boss, who has the final say-- just members. Unfortunately, this means that some people always speak louder and longer, and the meek don't always speak.

Yesterday, CAG had a membership meeting which was a delight. The gallery has several new members, and with this new blood, the group has turned a corner, in my opinion, and become a truly cooperative venture. Many, many new ideas were bandied about yesterday. Look for announcements here of upcoming events.

The next show-- Spirit's Journey-- starts this coming Saturday-- more on that later in the week. This exhibit will be a little different from the others because member artists will be showing more pieces. In addition, the gallery has added a Small Works Wall, which displays art that is being sold for $100 and under. There are also prints and jewelry (including some of mine) for sale at the gallery.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Night of 1000 Drawings: Revisited

Dinnerware Artspace
will host Night of 1000 Drawings again this year. This eclectic fundraising event is Saturday evening, January 31, from 6-9 p.m. You can check out the web link here for more details. Local artists-- comme moi-- donate small, unframed prints which are sold for $10-100 right off the wall. Last year, my friends and I really enjoyed this event. I donated two photographs and bought a really beautiful acrylic painting for $40. Such a deal for original art!

These are the two photographs I am donating this year.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Amores Perros: Bound for Love

Bound for Love, a new photograph of mine, will be included in the Amores Perros exhibit at Raices Taller on 6th Street.

This show is being billed as an introspective on human sensuality; Bound for Love fits well with this theme because it is a provocative glimpse at submission.

Amores Perros begins this Saturday, January 24, with an artists' reception from 6-10pm and continues through March 7, with a grand re-opening on February 14, Valentine's Day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Two More Hours!

I am almost speechless with anticipation and excitement of today's transfer of power from a failed presidency to a new one representing hope and change. After eight years of marching backward in time socially, economically, and politically, America is finally ready to move forward again. You know, of course, that the forces of darkness are going to try to bring down Barack Obama at every turn because their focus is political and ecomonic power-- not what is best for our country. Obama needs the solid support of all progressives. Today is a day of celebration for us. Tomorrow we have to join with him in taking steps to repair our country on many levels. Si se puede!

[Author's note: I have to add that Jim Blackwood's show on KXCI today has been an inspiration to me in writing this piece and the one below. Check the music links above. He played these tunes this morning. Also, the image above is Change Has Come to America by Kate Pearson. It is part of Dinnerware's Soup of Change exhibit.]

Soup of Change: Don't Miss It

Art, Politics, and the Soup of Change opened at Dinnerware Artspace last Saturday. I am an artist and a gallery junkie; consequently, I attend many art openings, but this is one of the more provocative exhibits I have seen in a while. It is the perfect show to span this historic time in our country-- the last few days of a failed administration and the first few days of our new dawn. Don't miss it! Here are a few images from the show, which ends January 24, 2009.

At the top is Bushilter, a floor cloth by Greg Schoon. This was a very dramatic piece. I particularly like the cross inside of the swastika and the swastika inside of the cross.

All types of politics were represented in the show, including sexual politics. At left is Brilliant Marketing Opportunity by Jerry Jordan.There were many images that included Bush, Chaney, and the hooded prisoner from Abu Ghraib Prison; they didn't pose together, though. At right is The Ugly Americans by Diane Kleiss Aldrich.Another piece that spoke to me was American Why? by Maurice Grossman. Even though (no offense, Maurice) it looks like artfully arranged pieces that were lying around his studio, I like it-- especially the faces lying in the sand.

As someone who believes watching television is a worthless, mind-rotting past time, I had to include Comfortably Numb by Jim Jones in this blog post.

All in all, a great show. If you're downtown this week, stop by Dinnerware and check it out.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Soup of Change: What Would Jesus Do?

Art, Politics, and the Soup of Change will premier at Dinnerware Artspace tomorrow January 17, 2009.

Political art by dozens of artists will be featured-- including my mosaic wall hanging "What Would Jesus Do?" A detail picture of the piece before it was assembled is shown here. My mosaic contrasts Jesus' teachings of love and kindness with what some people are doing in the name of religion (ie, waging war, allowing poverty to continue, fostering hatred against other people).

The opening is from 5-8 p.m. on January 17, and the show runs through January 24. Soup created by the artists will be served at the opening. Bring your own bowl and spoon. Be prepared for an event that will challenge your taste buds, as well as your mind.