Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Where Have I Been?

 Peonies - Gift from Hayes Parker and John Friedman
What I Did This Summer
It was a summer of teaching workshops, traveling and painting in my studio. In June, to Florida twice, before and after the my annual trek to Massachusetts and the Encaustic Conference.  In July, it was workshops all month. In August, a drive to Amarillo in the Texas panhandle for an exhibition then to Southern California to visit family.
And remember the BP oil disaster in the Gulf? Like everyone else in the country, we worried for our natural habitat along the Gulf Coast. We were fearful that this would be end of our pristine white sandy beaches in Florida and the beautiful natural wetlands and coastal environment. Who could forget that?  Every place we visited the incredible never ending oil leak was the topic of conversation.
October doesn't always arrive in Texas with cool temperatures so we count our blessings this year because Fall did seem to arrive on October one with cooler temperatures and lower humidity.

Above and below are photos of some beautiful Peonies given to me by friends Hayes Parker and John Friedman. They came from John's floral shop here in Houston. I think I liked the flowers as much as they dropped their petals as I did when they were freshly cut.  On down, are some images of my summer with not too much text. I'm back.

A fun day trip I took in May with friend Jennie Kimbrough was up to Nacogdoches where Stephen F. Austin State University is located to see the Texas National 2010 exhibition. It is an annual event held every Spring at the Cole Art Center which is part of SFA School of Art. The juror this year was Judy Pfaff, who also had works on view as well. Apologies up front for not having information about the work presented. I was allowed to take photographs so all the images are from me. Artist friends, Deborah Houston from Amarillo (TexasWAX member,) and Eileen Goldenberg from San Francisco, California, (IEA member) both had work accepted into the Texas National exhibition. Below are photos of their work.
To see a larger version of any of the images, place cursor on image and click.
Texas National 2010
Work by Deborah Houston

Piece in center is an Encaustic painting by California artist Eileen Goldenberg.
The exhibition space was full. I was told that Judy had a difficult time turning work away. Not to discredit Pfaff's choices or any of the artists whose work  was included, but I felt there was enough work in this space for at least two exhibitions and possibly three.
My pictures don't do the show justice.  There were some very engaging floor pieces throughout the gallery but  these photographs really don't capture them very well.

Near the back of the right side of the gallery. 

In the back of the gallery looking toward the street.

Center of gallery looking back

Some of the sculptural pieces
Looking to the back left of the gallery
One of the 3/D pieces in the exhibition
Judy Pfaff
Below are the images I took of Judy Pfaff's exhibition. I think this must be the first time I had seen her work in person. The work is delicate and yet dense. Looking and absorbing her work takes time.  Photographic images just can not do justice to her work. Layers upon layers upon layers upon layers. Sadly, I am familiar with her installation pieces through photographs only. I have always thought of those pieces as overwhelmingly full. If that is her aesthetic, full to brimming, I can see how she had such a difficult time making negative choices as juror. Again, my apologies for not supplying titles and other information regarding this work.

Detail of image above

Detail of image above
I held encaustic painting workshops in my studio at home in May and again in July. Check out those images on my Workshop Blog.  June and August coming up next. 


  1. Coincidentally, see on Joanne Mattera's blog some of Judy Pffaf's installation pieces.

  2. Gwen - Welcome back! I missed you. Wow, what a show at the Texas National. Personally, I don't think including everything does anyone any favors. It all becomes a mish-mash when there's so much to see. Even Pfaff's work is installed that way and I really think it makes it difficult to see. But thanks for posting so we could see what it looked like.

    I kept thinking of you in Texas when all the horrid stories about the oil disaster kept proliferating. I can't believe that that tragedy is over. Oil can't just disappear. It's still there down in the depths and I don't think we've heard the last of it.

  3. Nancy, we were fortunate somewhat along the Texas coast line regarding the oil. Some oil blobs came ashore but mostly they were traced to other sources. We get those anyway. The oil did reach the beaches of Pensacola while I was there in June. We got out to the beach for a swim just before the oil got there. Tourism suffered and that was bad but worse was how the ecosystem along the coastline was effected.

  4. Please could you update your link to n.paradoxa: international feminist art journal.
    The new website is at
    The website listed ( is closing this month – all material has migrated to the new website.
    You currently have it listed as an e-journal on your pages.


Comments Welcome!