Thursday, March 30, 2006

Wheel of Time

Zenith Gallery
Wheel of Time

Canadian Artists
Renee duRocher and Mary Ann Prack

Opening Receptions To Meet the Artists
Friday, March 31, 6:00 – 9pm
Saturday, April 1, 1:00 – 4:00pm

On Exhibit
March 31 - April 30

Preview the show at

Zenith Gallery
413 7th Street, NW

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

One Fun Loving Girl - Building Blocks

Today's front page in the Dupont Current Newspaper carries a picture of me with my latest mural and the feature article by Jessica Gould on page 7. You can pick up a copy in coffee shops around Dupont Circle. Dupont Current Newspapers.Thank you Jessica Gould and Davis Kennedy for helping the arts flourish in our neighborhoods.

I've been up to my eyeballs in projects this month. I'm nearing completion of my winter mural project, "Building Blocks, High Up Close to Heaven" for the Takoma Community Center in Washington, DC. I'm wrapping the ten panels tonight for David to pick up in the morning. And away we go for installation. The mural is commissioned by DC Creates Public Art, a program of the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities in partnership with the Dept. of Parks and Recreation. This will bring full circle my vision for the lobby of the community center; ten panels depicting youth, teens and seniors of diverse cultures interacting in leisure and fun in a DC neighborhood whose name has been said to mean, High Up and Close to Heaven.

And oh boy, what not so timid colors dominate the cityscape favorite red predominates with supporting yellows, oranges and blues in a bright orchestra of color and FUN. I'll take that word and translate it into my own requirement for living a truly fulfilled life. Excuse me if I bow out for some leisure next month, I mean the month of May after my exhibition opens at the Zenith Gallery on May 5 with, surprise, abstract paintings. More on that later.

While I've been undercover, I managed a sneak peek at the Dada Exhibition but not yet heard the automated instruments that supposedly play an irritating yet captivating symphony of sounds at the National Gallery of Art. I was taken by surprise at the Dadaist images provoked by World War One and how relevant they are to today's war theme. I've got to get back to see it in more detail.

Hmm, I've been feeling a little punchy from the varnish fumes. Excuse me while I go back to the studio. I have some more work to do. This Friday, Zenith Gallery opens a new exhibition, The Wheel of Time by Renee duRocher & Mary Ann Prack. Reception 6-9pm. Maybe I'll catch you there!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

National Building Museum - National Cherry Blossom Festival

National Building Museum
National Cherry Blossom Festival
Family Day and Opening Ceremony

Saturday, March 25
10:00am – 5:30pm

Family Day, 10:00am – 4:00pm
Opening Ceremony, 4:00 – 5:30pm

The National Building Museum and the National Cherry Blossom Festival celebrate the official opening of Washington’s 2006 cherry blossom season with a family festival full of hands-on fun exploring Japanese arts and design

There is no cost for this event
All ages
Drop-in program
Registration not required

Please forward this announcement to friends, family, and colleagues

National Building Museum
401 F Street, NW

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


John Aaron - Artist and Director of The Museum of Modern Arf in Arlington, Virginia is leading the charge on a global pro-peace art project for children. If you would like to participate with your own site event, email John Aaron

SEPTEMBER 16 - 17, 2006

CHALK4PEACE is the young person's global arts project planned for September 16-17, 2006 that brings together more than one million young artists of all ages around the world to create sidewalk chalk paintings about peace at the same time.

It is a one weekend event in September 2006 that happens everywhere...rain or shine...

Donations to to support this event are welcomed.This concept was designed and created in America by John Aaron of the Museum of Modern ARF.

The Sept. 16 Global Greeting of CHALK4PEACE N.A. is 10 a.m. EST at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, DC.
London, Washington, DC, Arlington, VA, Berkeley, Oakland, Santa Barbara, Boulder, Pasadena, Gambier, OH, Vermont, are participating along with hundreds of places we haven't heard from yet...

CHALK4PEACE GLOBAL NEWS: Chalk 4 Peace of the originators of the Chalk 4 Peace events in Europe in 2003, has joined forces with CHALK4PEACE N.A. and is exploring the possibility of a national convergence upon Trafalgar Square in London on September 16, 2006.Up to 50,000 people may participate at that location alone!

This event is a true Thousand Points of Light...maybe more! Be a part of the Path of Color that wraps around the world...
The children are our beacons; help let their light shine... September 16-17, 2006- CHALK4PEACE N.A..

"BODY WORLDS: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies"

My chiropractor told me to go see this show in Philadelphia. I had heard of Body Worlds but didn't know it is being exhibited so close to DC. Could be a bit queasy for the sensitive, but I think it will be an eyeopener to the beauty and health issues of the human form for all us laymen.

The Franklin Institute
222 North 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103

The Franklin Institute Science Museum hosts "BODY WORLDS: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies" from October 7, 2005 through April 23, 2006.

Throughout the ages, medical scholars and students have strived to understand how our bodies function through exploration of real human specimens. BODY WORLDS, one of the most highly attended touring exhibitions in the world, takes this tradition one step further by presenting a new look at the human body.

The exhibition features more than 200 authentic human specimens, including entire bodies, individual organs and transparent body slices that have been preserved through the process of "Plastination," a technique that replaces bodily fluids and fat. BODY WORLDS offers a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see and understand our own physiology and health and to gain new appreciation and respect for what it means to be human.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Marchands on the Mississippi and the St. Lawrence

Neither good nor bad - just an interesting tidbit of history, I'll share with you on New Orleans and the Marchands.

from Marchands on the Mississippi
by (Mayor) Sidney A. Marchand, 1968, Donaldsonville, Louisiana

"Governor Bienville founded the great city of New Orleans in 1718. The Marchands began arriving to assist in the hugh task of removing the trees, stumps and debris from the semi-marshlands which then stood on the site selected by Bienville and his Indian guides, whereon was to rise the great city of New Orleans.

In August 1718, Bienville received about 800 recruits from overseas and everyone pitched in to clear the tangle of trees and underbrush. The Marchands began arriving at the very beginning of the city...Governor Bienville founded the city in 1718, and, in 1719, built a thatched-roof hut on the site of this great metropolis for his personal use...the city was nothing more than a group of huts, shops and small houses."

NBC News coverage

With spring in the air, I'm hoping for good news days. The first is.... MCA Artists, Mike Weber and I and galley owner, Nevin Kelly were covered by NBC's Wendy Rieger for Mid City Artists Open Studios this past November. You can see and hear Wendy Rieger's interview of Mike and I here.

This spring Mid City Artists holds its semi-annual Open Studios on May 20 & 21, 2006 so stay tuned for more information.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Grant Wood's Studio: Birthplace of "American Gothic" (Renwick)

Now through July 16, 2006

"Grant Wood's Studio: Birthplace of 'American Gothic'" will, for the first time, present his decorative art and design work within the larger context of his paintings, drawings and prints. 'American Gothic'—one of the most recognizable American paintings—is featured in the exhibition through June 11. The Art Institute of Chicago, which owns 'American Gothic,' rarely lends the painting, so this is an exceptional chance to see the painting in the nation's capital.
The exhibition coincides with the renovation of the artist's historic studio in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, known as "5 Turner Alley," where he lived and worked from 1924 to 1935. Wood converted the loft of this turn-of-the-century carriage house into a showcase for his decorative arts work and a backdrop for some of his most famous paintings. The exhibition features works from the collection of the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, studio artifacts and heirlooms that served as props, as well as significant loans from other museums and private collections that rarely travel. Together these works help to re-create Wood's studio and demonstrate the importance of craft in the development of the artist's work. The showing at the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Renwick Gallery is the only presentation besides the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art. Jane Milosch, curator at the Renwick Gallery, is the curator of the exhibition. "Grant Wood's Studio: Birthplace of 'American Gothic' " is presented under the Honorary Patronage of Congressman Jim Leach and Deba Leach.

The Renwick Gallery is located on Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street N.W., steps away from the White House in the heart of historic federal Washington.
The Renwick is accessible by Metrorail at Farragut North (Red line) and Farragut West (Blue and Orange lines). Limited on-street and public garage parking is available in the neighborhood.
The museum is open seven days a week (except December 25) from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Admission is free.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Art projects for children at Tacoma Community Center

The first of three art projects introducing my new DC Creates Public Art mural to the Takoma Community went well yesterday. The young children came first with original drawings and this afternoon the teens take a turn at drawing. Tomorrow morning, the seniors. Creativity reigns this week! See you on the flip side. Varnishing the mural comes next with installation set for two weeks.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Art of War; a group show inspired by conflict.

:. studio one eight .:

2452 18th Street NW | DC | 20009 || 703.395.1932

Studio One Eight is please to announce Art of War; a group show inspired by conflict.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — March 18, 2006 — Studio One Eight presents “Art of War” featuring work by artists Anna U. Davis, Dana Ellyn, J Coleman, Jordin Isip, Kelly Towles, Lisa Marie Thalhammer, Matt Sesow, Peter Excho, Scott G. Brooks and others. Studio One Eight’s “Art of War" will take place on Saturday March 18th, from 7-10pm.

The exhibition marks the 3-year anniversary of the war that began in the Middle East on March 20th 2003. Bringing together pieces inspired by current events surrounding this hostile engagement, the exhibition will include artwork that has little regard for the popular aesthetic of beauty. The Artists were in no way censored, and simply asked to respond to the conflict at hand. This show makes no apologies and reflects the artists’ personal, unmitigated reactions to a subject that has affected thousands of lives across our country and across the world. The result; a striking commentary on war and the current state of the Middle East. Utilizing the multiple interpretations brought to the table by this eclectic mix of artists, works range from controversial and morose, to satirical and thought provoking. The beautiful, yet (in many cases) disturbing results will undoubtedly engage and challenge viewers.

Please join us for the opening reception on Saturday, March 18th 2006 from 7-10 p.m.

" How to Get Your Work Noticed By Newspapers, Galleries and Museums"

******Special Seminar******
" How to Get Your Work Noticed By Newspapers, Galleries and Museums"

Ever wonder how certain artists seem to have such access to press, galleries and museums? This is your chance to get on the inside track! We bring several experts together to share with you the methods and secrets of getting your work noticed by the people who count most. Our most popular seminar we've ever held.....sold out last time with standing room only.

Panelists : Michael O'Sullivan / Washington Post Art Critic - Lenny Campello / Gallery Owner, Art Critic and Blog Writer - Lee Lawerence , Contributing Editor for American Style Magazine, Claire Huschle/ Executive Director- Arlington Arts Center, Phylis Rosenzweig / Former Curator -Hirshhorn Museum

Location : Tiffany Theater - Arlington Arts Center
Date : March 15
Time : 7 to 9:30pm
Cost : $40 in advance - $45 at the door

Arlington Arts Center
3550 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, Virginia 22201
(703) 248-6800

Directions from Washington D.C. and points north of Arlington (by car):
Take I-395 South from Washington to exit 7B, Glebe Road North. Follow Glebe Road 2.7 miles to Quincy Street. Turn right onto Quincy Street and proceed 1/2 mile to Quincy and Wilson Boulevard. Turn right onto Wilson Boulevard. Travel Wilson Boulevard 2 blocks to the first traffic signal. Building will be on the right at the corner of Wilson Boulevard and North Monroe Street.
From 66 West, take Glebe Road exit. Turn left at light, heading south on Glebe Road. Cross Washington Boulevard. intersection. Turn left onto Wilson Boulevard., heading east. The Arlington Arts Center will be on the right at the intersection of Wilson Boulevard and North Monroe Street.

Sunday, March 12, 2006


And the beat goes on......

"Not giving up on city he loves, Mid-City resident artist Noel Wright, 43, said he and his wife Gina have drained their life savings and their credit cards are near the limits.

An artist and massage therapist, Wright wants to get back to business. But with the city more than half empty he's got no clients. Instead, he spends his days refurbishing their two-story duplex on Cortez Street."

Read more Article by J. JIONI PALMER Here.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

After Katrina, Artists Find a New Colony

Article in the New York TImes tells tale of fifteen displaced artists from the Katrina disaster.

"The loft, a former printing business on Hudson Street, was provided free for the six months ending in mid-May by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, which was founded by David Rockefeller to bring culture to downtown after the World Trade Center was built. Tom Healy, the council's president, said the council, financed by charities that include the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, has been trying to raise money to extend the artists' stay, and this week received financing so that the program can continue into June.

An Open Studio Weekend exhibit for all 15 artists is scheduled for April 28 to 30."
Read whole article here..

Friday, March 10, 2006

Cuisine des Artistes: 2006

Cuisine des Artistes is an annual spring fundraiser held for the DC Arts Center. This unique event showcases the talents of local area chefs and artists who collaborate to create works of edible art. The night begins at 6:30 with an hour long cocktail hour featuring artist produced appetizers. At 7:30 the night moves into a second room showcasing a new décor and the main courses of the evening. It is rounded out with a desert hour featuring among other things, eclectic entertainment that has in past years included poetry readings, as well as musical and performing artists.

Previous cuisine evenings have included a George Bush bean dip and tapas served from the front half of an antique car. This year's Cuisine will take place on May 10, 2006 at the H. Leonard's Mansion on O Street NW. Past participating artists and chefs have included Margaret Boozer, G. Byron Peck and Judy Jashinski, Bart Seaver (Saint-ex), Josh Wigham (Zaytinia) and Carol Greenwood. The great entertainment and edible art are sure to make this one of the "must see" events of the year.

This year's event will be held on Wednesday, May 10, 2006 from 6:30 - 10:00pm
The "O" Street Mansion: 2020 'O' Street, NW Washington, DC
Tickets are $120.00 for non-members (includes a one-year membership) or $100 for current members

for reservations contact DCAC at: 202-462-7833 or
DCAC is located at 2438 18th Street NW, between Belmont and Columbia Roads, in the heart of the Washington's Adams Morgan neighborhood.
DC Arts Center

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Songs of Spring

Oh yeah. What else can I say?

"Bird Song" and "Orchids," Blodiphoto, Any" x Size", you want to imagine.
Anne Marchand ©2006

(Once only, it stands for Blog Digital Photo.)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Divine and Human at National Museum of Women in the Arts

Divine and Human: Women in Ancient
Mexico and Peru
March 3, 2006 - May 28, 2006
Interactive preview

In ancient Mesoamerica and Andean civilizations, women had daily roles in both the spiritual and actual worlds. They were not only daughters, wives, mothers, and grandmothers, but also healers, midwives, scribes, artists, priestesses, warriors, governors, and even goddesses. Divine and Human brings together 400 archaeological treasures from the unparalleled museum collections of Mexico and Peru. Magnificent sculptures, textiles, pottery, and jewelry explore the feminine “sphere” in cultures as varied as the Aztec, Mayan, Zapotec, Moche, Mixtec, and Incan.

One of the unfortunate truisms of history is that few women are mentioned by name and fewer still get their stories told. Over the past 30 years, things have begun to change for the better, thanks largely to burgeoning archaeological, anthropological, and feminist scholarship directed to consideration of the proper status and role of women in ancient cultures.

Divine and Human: Women in Ancient Mexico and Peru examines the important and varied roles played by women in a “Who’s Who” of the major civilizations of ancient Mesoamerica and in the Andean region, including the Aztec, Mayan, Zapotec, Moche, Mixtec, and Incan cultures.

Organized into seven sections—Society, Politics and Religion; Sacred Origins of Food; Textiles and Clothing; Physical Ornamentation; Magic and the Occult; Daily Life and its Origins; and Goddesses—this groundbreaking exhibition explores the “feminine sphere” in detail.

NMWA will host the exclusive United States showing of Divine and Human: Women in Ancient Mexico and Peru.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Touchstone Gallery, Washington, DC USA

Tory Cowles: Catch Me if You Can
Aina Nergaard-Nammack: Rooftops and Facades
in the Main Gallery

The Exquisite Corpse
in the Annex

Opening Reception
Friday, March 10, 6:00 – 8:30pm
On Exhibit March 8 – April 9


Third Thursday
March 16, 6:00 – 8:00pm

Second Sunday Play Readings
March 12, 2:00pm
wRighting Women: A Venus Theatre staged reading of March Shorts

Touchstone Gallery
406 7th Street, NW, 2nd floor

Itsy Bitsy Bollocks

March 18 - April 22, 2006

With artists:
Mr. Eggs, Mark Jenkins, Travis Millard, and Kelly Towles

Opening Reception:
Saturday, March 18, 2006, 7-9 pm

Artists' Talk:
Sunday, March 19, 2006, 3 pm

Itsy Bitsy Bollocks is a site-responsive, collaborative exhibition
featuring drawing, painting, sculpture and mixed media installation
by Mr. Eggs (Manchester, England), Mark Jenkins (Washington, DC),
Travis Millard (Los Angeles, CA) and Kelly Towles (Washington, DC).
Influenced by skate and punk culture, graffiti, comic book art, and
pop art, each artist's work has a distinct visual style that comments
on urban life, current political and pop culture news and issues, as
well as personal anecdotes that convey the laughable and mockable in
humanity and society.

The artists in Itsy Bitsy Bollocks choose to present their work in a
multitude of urban settings to allow for immediate and unrestricted
viewer response. Presenting similar bodies of work within the
context of Transformer's store-front project space, Itsy Bitsy
Bollocks encourages dialogue around what constitutes fine art ˆ the
work itself or the context in which it is presented?

Evolving from the one night Bollocks event organized by Kelly Towles
in 2005 at Adamson Gallery (the commercial gallery who represents
Towles) ˆ an artistic intervention and convention of sorts that
featured the raffling of free works by over 100 `street' artists -
Itsy Bitsy Bollocks furthers the relationship of four emerging
artists and their work through a curated exploration of their playful
yet defiant street art aesthetics. With their art work presented
both outside and inside the gallery space, the artists in Itsy Bitsy
Bollocks bridge their rebellious street art-making processes and
keenly tuned contemporary and graphic art sensibilities creating a
unique exhibition at Transformer that highlights the irreverent humor
each of these artists brings to their work.

1404 P Street NW
Washington, DC 20005
* new photos on the site *

"Piranesi: A View of the Artist through the Collection of Engravings of the Royal Academy of San Carlos" (Valencia, Spain).

In collaboration with the Generalitat Valenciana.
In addition to the etched portrait of Piranesi executed in 1750 by Felipe Polanzani, the exhibition is comprised of pieces from the collection of the Museo de Bellas Artes de Valencia. Ten engravings selected from Piranesi’s most famous work, the Carceri d’invenzione (Imaginary Prisons), which exists in a first edition of 1745 and more importantly in a later edition of 1760 – 1761. In this second edition, Piranesi retouched the older plates created in his youth, accentuating elements already present in the first edition in order to enhance their overall effect. Ten of the sixteen engravings that make up the later edition may be viewed in the present exhibition, including two engravings (II and V) not present in the earlier edition, which consisted of only fourteen prints.
Four prints from the Vedute di Roma (Views of Rome) are exhibited. Besides the Carceri, these prints constitute the artist’s finest work. In them, Piranesi best displays his painterly skill as well as his love for the city where he spent the greater part of his life. It is also in this series, composed of 135 large plates, that he left the greatest testimony to his skill as a master of etching. Begun in 1748, this work occupied Piranesi for thirty years until 1778, the year of his death.

Also exhibited are eight prints from Le antichità romane (Roman Antiquities), a four-volume work published in 1756 by Angelo Rotilj, a press located in Rome’s Palazzo Massimi. This work is the result of Piranesi’s constant studies of the monuments of Rome and its surrounding area. Its first volume includes a total of 87 prints depicting different buildings in the city as well as the portrait of Piranesi engraved by Polanzani in 1750, while the second and third volumes include 90 prints of funerary monuments; the 57 plates that make up the fourth and final volume depict the bridges, theatres and porticos of Rome.

The exhibition concludes with two prints from the Antichità d’Albano e di Castel Gandolfo (Antiquities of Albano and of Castel Gandolfo), a work completed in 1764 and dedicated to Cardinal Rezzonico, who had been elected Pope as Clemente XIII in 1758. Rezzonico, who, like Piranesi, was from Venice, invited the artist to live at his summer residence on several occasions, giving rise to the work that Piranesi would later dedicate to the Pontiff in gratitude.

Exhibition dates and hours:
March 7 - April 3
Mon - Fri from 10:00 AM - 12-Noon
and from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Ferruccio Magatelli

Istituto Italiano di Cultura
2025 M Street NW, Suite 610
Washington, DC 20036
Tel (202)223-9800 Ext. 26
Fax (202)223-1129

Artscape Baltimore is coming up

The mid-Atlantic's largest celebration of the arts, Artscape features 120+ arts and craftspeople from across the country; visual art exhibits both on and off site; incredible live concerts on four outdoor stages; a full schedule of performing arts including dance, opera, theater, fashion, film and classical music, hands-on projects, children's entertainers, three street theater locations; and a delicious, international menu of food and beverages.

July 21-23, 2006

Apply now to be a part of the 25th annual celebration! Details here

Janet & Walter Sondheim Prize Decker & Meyerhoff Galleries, Fox Building, MICA
For its landmark 25th anniversary year, Artscape will award a $25,000 prize to an artist working in the Baltimore region. The prize will be in conjunction with the annual Artscape juried exhibition. This exhibition is limited to artists living in Maryland; Washington, DC; Delaware; Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties in Virginia; and Adams, Chester, Franklin and Lancaster counties in Pennsylvania. There is a $25 entry fee. Jurors; Kathy Grayson, Matthew Higgs and William Pope Artscape application

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Songs of Love

Our own mixed media artist and chorus member, Chuck Baxter performs with the Washington Men's Camerata. I saw the last concert at this location and the voices are truly heavenly. You won't want to miss this early spring concert.

Washington Men’s Camerata sings
Songs of Love
at Church of the Epiphany

Enjoy a program with new work, traditional favorites and little-known gems featuring the rich, warm sounds of male chorus singing at its finest.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Washington Men’s Camerata with Music Director Frank Albinder, will perform “Songs of Love” featuring the world premiere performance of Sonnet 22, a new work by composer Joel Hoffman for men’s chorus and two harps. The work is a setting of a sonnet by Elizabeth Barrett Browning and was commissioned by James Pinkerton and Jack Harrington. The Camerata will be joined in performance by harpists Susan Jolles and Deborah Hoffman, principal harpist of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. (Bios for J. Hoffman, Jolles, D. Hoffman, and Albinder are attached.)
Other music on the program includes popular tunes by Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, and Cole Porter, along with madrigals, part songs and folks songs – all on the subject of love. Composers include Gerald Finzi, Orlandus Lassus, Thomas Morley, Stephen Paulus, Thomas Tallis and more.

The concert will be performed on Sunday, March 26, 2005 at 3:00 p.m. at Church of the Epiphany, 1317 G St., NW, Washington, DC. Metro: Metro Center.

General admission tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for students. There is a special $50 family ticket which will admit up to six people. Tickets may be purchased online at or by calling 202-364-1064.

The mission of the Washington Men’s Camerata is to perform and preserve the heritage of men’s choral music by offering concerts of the highest artistic quality to the widest possible audience, helping to educate young people about classical music, collaborating with other arts organizations, encouraging composers to write music for male chorus, and preserving threatened repertoire through its National Repository Library of Men\'s Choral Music.

CONTACT: Jill Strachan

# # # # #

Friday, March 03, 2006

Opening is tonight at Zenith Gallery.

28th Anniversary Exhibition, March 3 - March 28, 2006
Opening Receptions: Friday, March 3, 6-9pm & Sunday, March 5, 2-5pm

Come by and see my work & 35 other artists. See you there.

413 7th Street NW • Washington DC 20004 • 202-783-2963 • •

New Orleans Museum to Re-Open

New Orleans Museum to Re-Open With a Salute to the Arts
Friday March 3, 10:27 am ET

NEW ORLEANS, March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Good News! Six months after devastating Hurricane Katrina, the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) will re- open its doors on March 3, 2006, with a weekend celebration of the arts called "The HeART of New Orleans."

The festivities begin on Friday with a ribbon cutting and press conference at 10:00 AM. Richard Ford, recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and PEN-Faulkner Award, and Ernest Gaines, MacArthur Fellow and recipient of the National Humanities Medal will be NOMA's honored guests and will address the issue, Arts, Culture and Louisiana after Katrina & Rita: Now What?

Saturday and Sunday highlight all aspects of art including the visual, performing, and literary, and include the ever-popular, Mid-City Art Market with over 60 artists. The three-day weekend is FREE TO THE PUBLIC and will feature a full roster of music and dance performances, demonstrations, lectures and family activities.

Among the performers scheduled to appear are: Irvin Mayfield, Dr. Michael White, Bryan Batt, NOCCA Jazz, Nomadic Tribal Dancers, Delta Ramblers, Panorama Brass Band, Soul Rebels, Lionel Batiste & Lars Edegran, McTaggart Irish Dancers, New Orleans Ballet, Lionel Ferbos Palm Court Jazz, Phil Melancon, Fredy Omar, Delta Festival Ballet, Celtic Harpists, and the acclaimed Anemone Ballet of New York City.

Many New Orleans writers are lined-up to present readings, answer questions and sign their latest books among them are Richard Ford, Julia Reed, John Barry, Chris Rose, Patty Friedmann, James Gill, Chris Wiltz, Patricia Brady, M.A. Harper, C.C. Lockwood, Josh Clark, Tom Varisco, Christina Vella, Kerri McCaffety, and George Rodrigue. Best known for his Blue Dog paintings, George Rodrigue will also be on hand to sign his Hurricane Katrina prints. Children's writers and performers entertain families throughout the weekend. The finale to this festival is a performance by the Imagination Movers taking place in NOMA's Besthoff Sculpture Garden.

The Museum re-opens with three new exhibitions with works being seen for the first time in New Orleans. First, Seen in Solitude: Robert Kipniss Prints from the James F. White Collection presents both the quietly evocative prints and vivid paintings of this New York Artist. Kipniss describes his work as, "an endless range of feelings and thoughts evoked by the basic act of seeing, usually in isolation, and with a haunting intensity."

Second, Inside the Congo: An Introduction to Field Research Archives of Frere Joseph Cornet introduces the rich collection of photographs and field notebooks from a man who, during several decades in Africa, painstakingly documented the beauty and complexity of several African cultures. Third, NOMA will display 40 paintings by Louisiana artists titled, A Keen Eye: Louisiana Art from the Collection of Martha Ann Samuel.

Following the grand re-opening, the New Orleans Museum of Art and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM. For more information on exhibitions, events, schedules, membership and how to contribute to NOMA's Katrina Relief Fund log onto .

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Creativity-rich brain waves

Hmmm. I'm aways courting inspiration. Maybe it's time to shift gears into the Careless abandon mode. I'll try it this week and see if life gets sweeter.

The high-buzz mode by
Robert Genn

Back in 1978 Colin Martindale of The University of Maine put
some electrodes on some students' heads and made an art-shaking
discovery. Subjects were asked to create stories while the
electroencephalogram recorded their brain waves. Creativity, he
found, had two main stages--with vastly different types of
waves. He called the two stages "inspiration" and
"elaboration." While stories were being dreamed up, brains were
surprisingly quiet--mostly alpha waves indicating a low level
of cortical arousal. It was the same sort of activity that's
often found in sleep, dreaming or rest--which could explain why
sleep and relaxation can help people to be creative.

However, when these quiet-minded people were asked to "work on
their stories" their brains became suddenly busier--flashing
messages back and forth between lobes. Vastly more
connectivity, focus, corralling and organization appeared to be
going on. Martindale found that the people who had the most
creative storylines also showed the greatest contrast between
the two types of brain activities.

Many creative folks know about this. But it's been my
observation that about 20% of artists never get into the second
stage at all. Without this cortical shift they short-change
themselves. The question becomes how to set yourself up to
enter the high-buzz mode. Here are a few parallel,
creativity-rich modes that might surprise you:

Lackadaisical boredom mode
Sublimated anger mode
Dreamy love mode
Deadline mode
Relaxed time-off mode
Automatic joy mode
Careless abandon mode

It's in this "abandon" mode that you can actually feel the
brain change. Your tools quicken and they begin to run the
show. The mind seems to think ahead, or giddily moves somewhere
else. Some artists need a small change of location or posture
to go into this elaboration stage. It may also take a
trigger--music, memory, pressure, subconscious lapse. Or it may
simply happen when the first mode has gone on long enough to
play out and let the high-buzz mode begin. Ideally, as in a
hybrid vehicle, the power is constantly shifting back and forth
to whatever is appropriate and needed at the time.

(c) Copyright 2006 Robert Genn.
Reprint permission granted by