Library Gallery Features Lino Prints and Landscapes

(Courtesy of Mike Yashar)
Wild Horses by Mike Yashar is an 18” x 24” pastel on paper on view at the gallery through Aug. 31.

    The Lamorinda Arts Council presents artwork from Marie Cotter, Hallie Strock, Carol Tarzier and Mike Yashar at the in-person and virtual Art Gallery at the Orinda Library during the month of August. Meet the artists at a reception in their honor on Saturday, Aug. 7, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., where light refreshments will be served.
    Cotter enjoys plein air painting and said the California hills any time of year offer different light, making everything very interesting. “The light and the sky here are always different and that is exciting,” said Cotter.
    She paints once or twice a week with a group of fellow plein air artists. She paints in various mediums such as mixed media (watercolor, inks and pastel). She likes to work in a series exploring different ways to tell a story, “Pastels enable artists to be freer than most mediums. The vibrant colors attract me.”
    For Cotter, the most important thing about painting is showing that beauty is all around us. When seeing her Twilight No. 4, a 26” x 21” pastel, you can almost hear the clouds whispering over the water in this ocean scene. View her work in the gallery or online at
    Strock, who lives and works in Berkeley, is showing her collection of 25 linoleum block prints colored with watercolor that she created over the last six years or so. The collection contains mainly landscapes with Strock focusing on composition and 
    Working with linoleum block prints requires planning a design with a balance between the block printed areas against the color areas. “It’s almost like solving a puzzle,” said Strock, continuing, “I seem always to want to return to trees.” She strives to create something is complex, yet pleasing to the viewer.
    She takes classes and participates in study groups to learn new techniques and to have dialogues with other artists. She is thankful for Zoom, which has allowed her to take lessons from an abstract painter who lives in Yorkshire. England. Magical Forest is an 18” x 18” linoleum block print with watercolor. Learn more about her work at
    Tarzier lives in the Oakland hills. “I was able to move there in 2017 and love being close to trees and wildlife. I have replaced the eucalyptus on my property with redwoods, and host multiple beehives on the property. I nurture the native oaks, build water features and plant pollinators.”
    This exhibit features figurative work, still life and landscape. Currently, she teaches for the Rossmoor Art Association because she enjoys the friendly environment. One look at Fog at Morro Rock and you will hover beneath a cloud-filled sky over a wind-swept beach.
    Tarzier sees painting as endlessly challenging so a receding goal-line of success and satisfaction with her own work has kept her going. She now feels reasonably at peace with her painting as communicating “something of what I perceive.” She added, “And that’s almost enough.”
    Yashar, who lives in Clayton, said that although oil is the medium of most of his work, there is a freshness and brightness that can only be achieved with pastel. He said it is a very convenient medium since it can easily be carried around on locations.
    There are 10 paintings within the theme of “Landscapes in Pastel.” Yashar wants people to know “it is the color and light that, like a musical score, when placed and assembled together with an artistic vision produces an enchanting visual symphony.”
    Yashar’s 18” x 24” pastel on paper entitled The Britain’s Lime portrays a lively tree, twisting and turning its fruits and leaves, perhaps to jealously guard them.
    This exhibit runs Aug. 1 through 31 at the Orinda Library at 26 Orinda Way. Hours are Mon. – Thur., 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Fri. – Sat., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., closed Sun. Call 925.254.2184 for more information about the Library or visit To learn more about the Lamorinda Arts Council go to or email curators Maggie Boscoe and Bill Carmel at

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