Thursday, July 31, 2014

Istanbul during Ramadan

Dear Art-Loving Friend,

On the night of the full moon, after my friend Kumiko and I finished up at the art symposium in Bulgaria, she and I were on our way to Istanbul.  I hope you enjoy these images.  We packed a lot in to the short time we were there, my first.  I will be writing about the experiences in Bulgaria in an art newsletter in August.  If you would like to receive a subscription to that publication (only 6-8 times per year), please send me your e-mail address with an add request (that list is different from the blog subscription list, which I do not manage).

Anyway, I would write more, but today is my birthday and I want to eat dark chocolate and cherries, some good food, and do some painting.  Hard to believe this journey thus far, and I am curious to know where and how the future unfolds… in any event, I am now:

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Hélène's Vase - still life oil painting and Australia Arts

Dear Art Lover,
I have been having some difficulties transferring my site to a new host and distributing my art newsletter.  It may be a focus issue, since I keep arguing with myself that I would rather be making art. ha. 
In any event, here is the newsletter that I recently published about my trip to Australia, including some lovely beach and Nature images.  I hope you enjoy:

Also included in my newest oil painting on a wooden panel, a still life titled "Hélène's Vase" She is available.  Just contact me at sculptor @  [minus the spaces].

Thank you for stickin' with me!  Happy days to you.
~ Kelly

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Sarina Arts Extravaganza Australia

Dear Art Loving Friend,

I have spent the majority of this past week teaching workshops to children in the schools, as well as to adults in our makeshift atelier up on the stage in the community building that houses the Sarina Arts Extravaganza here in Australia.  In addition to that, I have been working in a local high school to help the kids learn how to create a mural.  I have been consulting with the class to show them how to take their ideas, expand them to fit the project and create a composition.  Because of the time constraints, I was only allowed to talk about several ways they can take their – to date – unfinished designs and enlarge them to create the cartoons needed to transfer their ideas to a much larger space.  [Cartoon as defined in Michelangelo’s time, not today’s definition of the word.]

One of the area schools was thrilled to let us guide the various age groups of their classes around the art exhibit while I spoke about the idea of art being more than “just a pretty picture.”  Art is the safe place in which we can express and explore our humanity … all aspects of it, as well as appreciating the Natural (or unnatural) world we inhabit. I also wanted to tell them that artists train as long as or longer than other professions, such as doctors and engineers.   THAT raised a lot of eyebrows as the possibilities began to open in their minds!  Several asked me if I make a living at art and I told them, “Yes,” and that my life as an artist is what brought me to their lovely country!

Thanks to a suggestion by local artist and art teacher Sally Cunnington, my hostess (and Sally’s artist mother) Janice Ailwood and I asked the children and teens to choose an artwork in the exhibition that made them feel some emotion and use it as inspiration for their own creations.  We were all thrilled at how well they took to this.  I really love the freedom and joy in young children’s art!

I include a few images (not showing any kid faces) and have a few more of Facebook.  I loved this little girl with pigtails’ posture as she drew a mermaid.  Not unlike my own, perhaps, although she is way more flexible than I, even before my spine injury.  [The image of me was taken by Ayfer Mills in March 2014 in Florence, Italy.]

The kids copied the grownups art, other youths art, and a few went off on their own way and drew what they wanted with the inspirations already in their heads.  We must have seen hundreds of kids over a three day span and it was wonderful!  In general, the response here has been overwhelmingly positive and I wonder what sort of long-term impact our work here may achieve. 

I asked a few of the kids in our last class if they could hold their art up to the artwork that inspired them, but not show their faces to protect their privacy.  Isn’t it lovely how different their designs are from the original? 

This last image is my last sunset for this visit to Sarina in Queensland.  Next stop . . . Tasmania!

Thank you for reading and sharing the journey.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Street Painting Australia

Dear Art Loving Friend,
I have been working Down Under these days, but it is not all hard times!  My hosts Ron and Janice Ailwood have been showing me some of the local sights… which tend to be of the natural sort (my favorite kind).  They have wallabies in their backyard; birds, too, and lots and lots of stars!  We have also been traveling around a bit through this sugarcane farming country.  And the image of the three of us was taken shortly before we spotted the resident platypus in the creek/stream behind us.

This past Tuesday, Janice and I created a small street painting on the sidewalk of an outdoor shopping mall to promote the upcoming arts festival this weekend. (The weather here is wonderful!)  Here are the results of our “joyous adventure on our knees and bums” – er… !  People loved it and stopped in the middle of their busy shopping to chat us up and take photos.

Yesterday I judged hundreds of entries in an arts competition that is open to all Australians.  Up until yesterday, I was a virgin judge.   I rarely do well in competitions myself [I see myself as only competitive with myself and loathe these sorts of situations] and I find myself disappointed by how unfair I think most competitions are. My biggest pet peeve is artists who enter professional competitions with student work ... in my book that means anything done while under supervision of a paid or consistent instructor.

I REALLY looked at each of hundreds of artworks and tried to choose pieces that showed honesty, thought, skill, and creativity. I was happy that I am in a community in which I know so few people and would not be swayed by any emotional or self-promoting motives, such as voting for my own students. Tonight (soon, in fact), the awards will be presented and then Saturday morning, the artists will ask me for feedback on specific pieces and why I made such-and-such decisions.  In the end, the choices are simply one girl's opinion on a certain day, but I hope that most will see the kindness and love I put into the effort (and the written feedback I gave) and that I took their work into serious consideration.

I have already done some teaching and consulting in local high schools and the workshops (adult and children) start on aturday, different ones on different days.  I hope to share something of what I have learned over the years and have some more fun with these kind people!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sarina Arts Australia

Dear Art Loving Friend,
I recently stepped foot in Oz, for the very first time.  It took four separate airplanes for me to reach my destination and I am still filled with the awe of flight!  Thus far, Australia was just what the doctor ordered.  I have put my toes in the sand, drank the purest collected rain water, soaked up fresh air and seen a spattering of stars in the night sky, and taken a gander at some interesting critters.  It is so lovely to be away from the city!

I hope you enjoy these images, especially the “fireworks” on Sarina Beach made by small sand crabs.  They make SPHERES of sand and push them out of their holes into these lovely patterns.  How festive!  From my hosts’ home, I can see a very red Mars and the Southern Cross (a constellation not seen in the Northern Hemisphere) dominating very starry nights.

I have been hired to work the 25th anniversary edition of the Sarina Arts Extravaganza, in northeast Australia.  Our first morning of activities were wet… and this little copy of a Marilyn Monroe in Andy Warhol style was just me goofing around to check the wetness of the sidewalk.  I later got the kids to street paint their version of Early Renaissance artist Botticelli’s “Primavera(cropped).  We got some gorgeous sunshine and again later, it poured rain.  However, the kids loved it and really enjoyed the vibrant colors of the pastels. 

I will be creating another street painting soon.  In addition to that, I will be judging the art competitions here next week, teaching a workshop in sight size drawing and painting to adults, several children’s workshops, and working with a local high school on a mural project.  The people here have been absolutely lovely.  It is going to be a great week.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Red White Green Oil Paintings

Dear Art-Loving Friend,

    One of the things I wanted to learn is how to paint a brilliant red and all of the tones involved in order to make a red object look three-dimensional. Painters know that when one adds white to a pigment, the colors lightens and becomes bluer or colder. So, how does one lighten red and still have it remain red and rich?

    Another skill to learn is that one must depict a white porcelain object using much darker tones than expected. The whitest white possible in paint is left for the highlight. And also in this project, a green is added as a complimentary color. Adding to those ideas, in the first one that I painted, I wanted the subject in light to be in the background of the work, letting the foreground go dark. This is a bit opposite from the Tenebrist project "Giuseppe's Tools" that I painted, in which light emerges from dark, advancing towards the viewer.

    I hope you enjoy these two still life paintings. "Red, White, and Green" is 70 x 50 cm [oil on wood], while "Olives and Oil" is 24 x 45 cm [oil on canvas]. Both are available… Just respond to this e-mail or contact me as you wish, if interested.

Happy birthday, Rudy!  34 already!

oil painting on wood panel with red cloth, white porcelain, and greenery
Above:  "Red, White, and Green" oil painting on wooden panel [with GessoVero by Kelly Borsheim]
oil painting of red cloth and white porcelain vase, with bowl of olives art
"Olives and Oil" an oil painting on canvas featuring a red cloth, white porcelain oil flask, and bowl of olives by Kelly Borsheim

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Invite to Personalities Wine Art People Exhibition

Dear Art Lover,

As I began to unpack my art in front of Amerigo and Carmela, proprietors of VinOutlet here in central Florence, Italy, they started having some ideas and seeing possibilities.  They were immediately drawn to some portraits that I had created some time ago of some of my artist friends.  The portraits are a bit unusual in that they are white pastel on black paper.  I did the series out of curiosity.  Before this, I had created tone drawings with a variety of darks (charcoal and pastel) on light paper and I wanted to know how much one could stretch the range of tones by using only white. 

[leggere qui di seguito per questo invito in italiano]

First, the invite:  VinOutlet is featuring some of my artworks and you are invited:

Art Opening:  "Personalities:  Wine, Art, People"

Friday, 9 May:  6 - 9 p.m.

VinOutlet at Borgo Ognissanti 70/r

50123 Firenze, Italia   [Florence (FI) - Italy]

Tel.  +39 055 26 70 495

Come on out for a fun evening and start your weekend well!

Some of the personalities are:
  • "Hélène" has been paired up with Negramaro Organic "Pirro Varone."  This red wine comes from Apulia, a region in southeast Italy.  Negramaro comes from a very warm place with lots of personality.  "She is powerful, but not overwhelming," said Amerigo Coli.  "Red is the line that links passion to good food."

  • "Jessica" calls to mind the more elegant Ruché di Castagnole Monferrato "Il Firmato."   This red wine consists of 100% Ruché grapes and hails from Piedmont, the region most northwest in Italia.  She comes from an almost forgotten grape.  It was thought to have been destroyed when many Italian grapes took a hit back in 1910 after some imported plants from the USA included an insect for which Italian (and even Spanish and French) grapes had little immunity.  However, in the 1950s a young priest was sent to the region to try to rebuild it after the war.  He discovered the grape in a small field near the church and shared it with different farmers who revived the autochthonous grape.  This wine conjures images of feminine flowers, having soft and very perfumed scents of rose and geraniums.  Ruché has a 14.5% alcohol content.  She bites, but you do not feel the bite [or so Amerigo assures us!]

  • "Dana" is paired with Tegolaia Travignoli Supertuscan 2005.  This red wine is from Tuscany.  She is a more international wine, but is aged in small French oak barrels.  The smaller barrels give the vanilla or chocolate, sometimes spicy bouquet to the wine.  The phrase "SuperTuscan" refers to a wine made from blends of grapes that are grown in Tuscany, but which have a foreign origin.

I hope you enjoy this collaboration between VinOutlet and Borsheim Arts Studio.  You may access both the wine and the art online, but would it not be much more fun to just come and see us in Florence?

Salve a tutti gli amici dell'Arte!

Appena ho mostrato le mie opere ed i miei quadri a Carmela e Amerigo, proprietari di Vinoutlet a Firenze, abbiamo subito iniziato a parlare di idee e cose da fare. Entrambi sono stati attratti immediatamente da alcuni ritratti di miei amici artisti che ho creato qualche tempo fa.
Sono ritratti un po' fuori dall'usuale, sono infatti pastelli bianchi su cartoncino nero. E' una serie di disegni fatti quasi per curiosità. Prima di fare questi in bianco e nero, avevo creato disegni con una varietà di chiaro-scuro (carboncino e pastello) su carta leggera e volevo sperimentare e capire quanto fosse possibile espandere la gamma di toni usando soltanto il bianco.

Alcuni dei miei lavori sono in esposizione da Vinoutlet e siete invitati all'evento:

"Personalità: vino, arte, persone."

Venerdi 9 maggio dalle 18.00 alle 21.00

Vinoutlet Borgo Ognissanti, 70/r

50123 Firenze - Italia

Tel. +39 055 26 70 495

Vi aspettiamo per una serata divertente ed iniziare bene il fine settimana!

Ecco alcune delle personalità:

"Hélène" è stata abbinata al Negramaro "Pirro Varone". Un vino pugliese, proveniente da una regione ricca di sole e personalità. E' un vino con personalità ma non irruento" come dice Amerigo Coli. "Rosso è il trait d'union che unisce la passione ed il buon cibo"

"Jessica" ricorda invece il più elegante Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato. "Il Firmato" è un Ruchè in purezza che arriva dal Piemonte, frutto di un uva riscoperta negli anni '50 che si pensava distrutta dalla filossera arrivata dagli Stati Uniti agli inizi del '900. E' stato un prete delle campagne di Castagnole a rivalorizzarla ed a far arrivare il suo nome ai nostri giorni. Ruchè ricco di profumi floreali di rosa e geranio. Un po' come Jessica, i suoi 14,5° mordono ma dolcemente.

"Dana" è stata abbinata al Tegolaia, Supertuscan 2005, rosso del Chianti Rufina e fra tutti, è il vino di gusto più internazionale, come il personaggio di Dana che ha viaggiato il Mondo in lungo e largo. E' invecchiato in barrique francesi  che ricordano sia la vaniglia che le spezie più piccanti.

Sperando che questa collaborazione fra Vinoutlet e  Borsheim Arts Studio  sia di vostro gradimento  vi aspettiamo numerosi per scoprire il "gusto dell'arte".

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