Like her art, Phyllis shows up to work:
There is the work of making art, and then there is the work that the art does when released into the world. Art work.
She began her thoughtful presentation noting that The Art Hall is a very special place—a social place where children and parents can gather and interact with art every day—so different than a commercial gallery. (Thank you for noticing, Phyllis!) Indeed, the social aspect of our everyday lives is as invaluable as the art which surrounds us.
Phyllis also spoke about artists working together; that something happens between artists—workers—that doesn’t happen when they’re alone. Phyllis is an active member of the Regional Sketch Group in Oregon, whose members exhibited their Nine Nature Sketches individually interpreted from Rudolf Steiner’s indications, on display at The Art Hall in January 2017.
Another treat available (besides our abundant hospitality table!) was Phyllis’ reading of a David Whyte poem: What to Remember When Waking. It echoed Phyllis’ artistic process as she mused “what’s waiting to come and show itself…what color or line or shape wants to come?”
The impulse and structure for this current exhibit followed from Phyllis’ blog artworking, a collection of paintings and associated reflections through the seasons. In the aftermath of the 2016 US presidential election, Phyllis was new to social media and felt inspired to do something: like artists throughout history, she turned towards creating in the face of cultural distress as a bold and necessary act. “Putting it out there, connecting human to human, is part of the art working. I was shocked and delighted to receive worldwide responses.”
Phyllis “encourage(s) each of us to make art and to feel the life of it as we’re creating it and appreciating it…(even) while I brush my teeth, I’m looking at a piece of art and letting it speak to me.”
Eight of these beautiful twenty-two paintings sold the night of the opening! As Phyllis wants her art to do their work in the world, if you should want to purchase a piece and find the listed gallery price out of your range, then please feel free to contact Robin at 503-222-1192 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss other possibilities.
The Art Hall is pleased to begin its sixth year (!) exhibiting art created by artists working out of the spiritual impulse of anthroposophy, with Phyllis Helland, from Eugene, Oregon, joining our roster of locally, nationally and internationally recognized artists at her opening reception on Thursday, January 17th.
A YEAR OF ART IN THE LIFE OF PHYLLIS HELLAND
“Our lives are an art. To live in a creative way nurtures our souls and improves our lives.
It’s a daily practice. Each new day given to us is a blessing and a chance to try again.”
~ from Jennifer Thomson, one of my teachers ~
In my practice I find drawing helps me to see and understand what I am looking at, and what is looking back at me. I carry a sketchbook with me most of the time.
Painting is a dialogue with color. Sometimes I paint purely to explore color and mood and watch for a motif to reveal itself. When I paint outdoors, en plein air, the natural world reveals colors that are not readily seen, but are there, nonetheless. The more I work with color, the more color I see in nature, and the more color reveals to me.
Some of these are pieces I made in the past year, others earlier. However, in the past year I have put all these pieces “to work” in various exhibits, study groups, and on social media. Whenever a piece of art engages with a viewer, something happens that is entirely between the viewer and the piece itself.
There is the work of making art, and then there is the work that the art does when released into the world. Art work.
Please join us for Phyllis’ opening reception Thursday, January 17th, 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. and hear Phyllis share her unique perspective on growing art in the world at 6:00.
Intricate and complex, Tom’s Klein’s string art on our walls and Marty Levin’s geometric sculptures hanging from the ceiling complemented one another and the Art Hall space beautifully at their opening on Thursday, March 08th. Shadowed patterns on the walls beckoned the viewer to look more deeply into the beauty of the mathematics.
Marty and his wife, Judy, spent at least ten hours installing the cables and then hanging all the sculptures one long Saturday. Tom was more fortunate that our hanging system, already in place on the walls, completely supported his string art mounted on heavy wood—a much simpler installation.
At their opening both artists passionately shared their research and process that went into creating these marvelous scientific and artistic pieces to a warm, receptive and inquisitive audience. We are very grateful to Tom and Marty for their effort and generosity in exhibiting this unique work. They have both agreed to keep the exhibit on display through May.
If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about geometry in relation to this exhibit both artists are available to teach. The string art pieces are for sale or available to order. Please contact Robin Lieberman for any inquiries at 503-222-1192 or email@example.com.
We at The Art Hall are pleased to present a joint exhibit of geometric string and metal art by Tom Klein and Marty Levin, long-time anthroposophists whose lifelong passions for experimenting with dynamic form and space have drawn them together in recent friendship and artistic collaboration.
Please join us this coming Thursday, March 08th, for the opening of their show titled String and Metal; Movement in Space. Doors open at 5:00 and we’ll enjoy a talk by the artists at 6:00 p.m.
Marty and Judy Levin’s second stop when exploring Portland as a possible new home was the opening reception for MJ Davison at The Art Hall in January 2016 after a welcoming dinner with Jannebeth Röell and James Lee. Since then, the Martins have become regular attendees providing invaluable support at events at The Art Hall and others in Portland’s anthroposophic community. In addition, last Fall Marty had a stunning exhibit of his geometric sculptures at the Multnomah Art Center. Warm and gentle by nature, he has had a rich and rewarding career as a mathematician and Waldorf teacher.
After receiving my Ph.D. in mathematics from Johns Hopkins University, I met Georg Unger in 1970 in Dornach, Switzerland. He introduced me to mathematical work based on indications from Rudolf Steiner, in particular the geometrical work of George Adams. Dr. Unger also suggested the Platonic solids as forms worthy of contemplation. I spent most of my career teaching mathematics in Waldorf high schools, where the students’ ability to visualize forms and the movement of forms was developed through geometric drawings and models. After retiring, I further perfected my techniques for making the geometric models, exhibiting them in math conferences and art galleries.
The ancient Greeks found that there are exactly five convex regular polyhedra, called the Platonic solids. In modern times we have found that these same forms represent all possible types of finite three-dimensional symmetry, thereby showing once again that they are fundamental to the nature of space. The geometric sculptures, exhibited here, show some of the geometric relationships between the different Platonic solids, and are designed to suggest planes and lines coming in from the infinitely distant periphery. They are made with a minimal amount of physical material; what’s important is not what is there, but what is not there, which the viewer sees with their inner eye. When viewing a piece, if you close one eye and move slightly, you will find positions in which various lines suddenly coincide, giving startlingly beautiful and different views.
Tom Klein, together with his dear wife, Ruthi, have been pillars in our Portland anthroposophic community for over 40 years. At the helm of the start of the Portland Waldorf School, manager of the former Steiner Storehouse, Cedarwood School’s first administrator, anthroposophic library keeper, board member of PCCI (a local Camphill-inspired initiative)…the list goes on. We at The Art Hall can always count on Tom (and Ruthi!) to pitch in, take the lead, sell books, set up, man the registration table…yes, that list goes on, too.
As a twelve-year graduate of the Rudolf Steiner School in NYC, Tom has been building and creating his entire life. Many of the chairs, tables and play stands in the local Waldorf schools have come from Tom’s workshop. And he does beautiful custom orders for dining tables and outdoor furniture. Your home may already be graced by Tom’s extraordinary string art which he clearly elevates to new levels: large or small in scale, colorful and intense, these creations are beautiful and mesmerizing. Tom has been a guest teacher locally, sharing his process and forms with young student-artists as part of their Waldorf school geometry blocks. Having worked for 28 years at Head Start, Tom’s dedication and love for children and their well-being is contagious.
I first met string art in sixth grade geometry and again in eighth grade when studying conic sections. I have actively pursued this interest for the last 50 years. In elementary school I worked with circles with 12-points. In the 1960’s I worked with 48-point circles and in the 1970’s started working with 96-point circles. I also developed and worked with spirals. In the conic sections work, which also began in the 60’s, I worked in lines consisting of…points placed as close as possible.
When invited to exhibit together there was no hesitation from either of these two new friends. They began meeting to collaborate on how they would share the space in the hall with great joy and excitement: a match made in heaven…and manifesting here, for us!
Again, please join us this Thursday, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m., for the opening, with a talk by the artists at 6:00 p.m.
Well, we did it! We managed our Dispersal of Laura Summer’s vibrant paintings even though Laura couldn’t be present. Luckily, Laura sent a lovely YouTube video in which she spoke about Dispersal and the joy of painting for us.
An intimate group enjoyed the grand, evening opportunity to socialize surrounded by healing, colorful paintings. About half the 30 pieces were dispersed, so the opportunity to become a steward of an original Laura Summer artwork still awaits you!
Anytime you want to view the work during school hours just ring the bell at Cedarwood and someone will show you to The Art Hall. Otherwise, feel free to make an appointment with Robin, our director, and she will gladly work with you. Laura’s wish is for all the paintings to be dispersed so they can do their healing work in their new homes.
We also introduced Ryley Wheeler, Cedarwood student and Robin’s mentee for his 8th grade project, a significant part of which involves creating the fliers announcing the exhibits. Almost five years ago Ryley won the school-wide naming contest for our gallery, so he had an early hand helping The Art Hall come into being!
Two of our former gallery artists were instrumental in installing the exhibit: Jannebeth Röell and Patricia Lynch. Robin is indebted for their open willingness to help! (And this is really an exceptionally well displayed exhibit!) Also, a big thank you to regulars, Ruthi Klein and Judy Levin, for graciously tending to the Dispersal and Donation tables.
Please look for another update to follow, as the Gospel of St John two-day workshop was also a grand event! We will install work from ten of the participants soon in The Art Hall with another soft opening: an opportunity to consider becoming a steward of one or more of the remaining works—Dispersal Portland 2018 Two!
We at The Art Hall are delighted to announce the return of Laura Summer. Four years ago, when we first hosted Laura, 36 of her paintings were dispersed. We are so fortunate to have the opportunity to feature 30 new stretched canvases specifically painted for Dispersal 2018!
Laura is working to create the conditions for artists to be able to work freely: patrons can become the steward of a painting but cannot buy or own it. But in donating, the patron could at least, for example, pay for the materials to make new work, thereby supporting the artist to keep creating.
Each painting in the exhibit/dispersal will have a tag indicating a range from zero up to what the piece might typically sell for. This way of communicating encourages both artist and patron to engage in a relationship with the art and with one another.
The reflective/contemplative patron may ask herself “what can I afford to pay for this painting that so touches my soul?”, or “when I first looked at it, what did I imagine the price would be?”, or even “what can I truly afford to spend to enrich my world?”
One may donate and not become a steward. Or one may donate, become a steward, and live with the painting. Later, perhaps one then feels moved to share it with someone else, letting the artist know where the painting now lives. Or, when the painting has met its need, the steward can simply send it back to the artist, renewing the process.
Laura has said, “each painting has its work to do in the world and I want them all to be dispersed.…Color is healing for the human soul.” You can read more about Art Dispersal on the Free Columbia website, the school Laura co-founded based on the same monetary principles. Her biography appears below the post.
Many of us in the Portland and Eugene areas have been looking forward to Laura’s visit since we began planning last May. Also on the west coast agenda is a two-day workshop titled The Gospel of St John, to occur the Saturday and Sunday following Friday night’s Dispersal, adjacent to The Art Hall in the South Performance Space at Cedarwood Waldorf School.
Unfortunately, due to challenging family circumstances, Laura needs to postpone her west coast teaching schedule. However, with her heart-felt blessing and loving guidance we will proceed with the Dispersal as scheduled on Friday, January 19, 2018, and with the two-day workshop to follow (see the accompanying flier below or click here for the same details). Please continue to sign up with Robin Lieberman (503-222-1192; firstname.lastname@example.org), who will facilitate the workshop.
We will welcome Laura back to Portland in due time. For now, we send her our blessings and gratitude as we continue to learn and grow from her creativity and teachings that she so generously shares with the world. And we are sending love to her family.
Artist’s Biography. Laura Summer is co-founder with Nathaniel Williams of Free Columbia, an arts initiative that includes a full-time program based on the fundamentals of painting as they come to life through spiritual science. It is completely grass roots donation supported and has no set tuitions. Her approach to color is influenced by Beppe Assenza, Rudolf Steiner, and by Goethe’s color theory. She has been working with questions of color and contemporary art for 30 years. Her work, to be found in private collections in the US and Europe, has been exhibited at the National Museum of Catholic Art and History in New York City and at the Sekem Community in Egypt. She has published seven books, four with painting and drawing exercises and three with stories. She founded two temporary alternative exhibition spaces in Hudson NY, 345 Collaborative Gallery and Raising Matter—this is not a gallery and initiated ART DISPERSAL 2012-17, where over 450 pieces of art by professional artists have been dispersed to the public without set prices.
Like bees to the hive, visitors buzzed around The Art Hall to meet Jacqueline Freeman and hear her colorful story of encountering and photographing the Elementals on her farm. Indeed, it was a sweet night!
The event shared the evening with Cedarwood’s Back to School Night, which made for a very full house, rich with a variety of interest, and two beautiful hospitality tables.
Jacqueline is a natural storyteller: she speaks from her heart and soul of her own experiences. She lives as part of nature and has a keen awareness of the nature spirits and listens to them carefully. “You could feel the exuberance when the Undines were happy with the (new) pool of water.” She respectfully asked each plant that she photographed to guide her…the message being “look in between.”
Well…given that the nature spirits are beings that do live in between the physical and the spiritual world, Jacqueline really paid close attention! She learned how to Photoshop and “naively” split and reflected the images of her plants and indeed, there they were, in between.
Frightened by the intensity late one night while looking at the screen, Jacqueline closed her computer and didn’t look again for a while. The spirits then stopped showing themselves to her and so she began to apologize in an almost prayer-like manner for “shutting them out”, asking for their forgiveness and for them to appear again. Eventually they did and this exhibit is an honoring of these beings.
Jacqueline captivated the audience with her further description of the healing properties of many of the images on display. And Jacqueline generously came back to The Art Hall two days later, Saturday morning, to share stories of Flower Fairies to a transfixed group of children and parents alike.
Several of the hanging images have been sold. The exhibit will remain open until Thursday, November 09, 2017. A portion of sales will be donated by the artist to The Art Hall in support of its mission to share art created out of the spiritual impulse of anthroposophy, keeping art alive into the future.
All photos courtesy of Cedarwood parents, Ben McLeod (DBM) or Linda Brown (LKB).