Orinda Art Scene – May 2023


May in the Art Galleries at the Orinda Library and Wilder

Art Gallery at the Orinda Library: Ekphrasis Collaborative Exhibit
    The inspiration for this month is “Ekphrasis,” the Greek word for writing, which describes or explains other art. The exhibit is a collaboration of the California Writers Club (CWC) – Mt. Diablo Branch, the Lamorinda Arts Alliance (LAA) and the Lamorinda Arts 
Council (LAC).
    This unique exhibit focuses on fine artworks which inspire literary works and literary works that inspire fine artwork.
    Linda Hartmann, vice-president of the CWC and the 2021 Jack London awardee, said the initial definition of Ekphrasis was a literal or poetic representation of visual portrayal.
    “Ekphrasis is an elegant way to appreciate both literary works and visual arts, coupled rather than separately, and within the context of an inspired relationship,” she said.
    Hartmann, chairs CWC’s Scholastic Art & Writing Awards and Ekphrasis and participates in the annual Young Writers Contest as a juror, emcee and creator of the screen presentation for the award ceremony.
    “We’re rendering this distinction two-ways, with visual artists responding to their inspiration from a literary or poetic piece,” she said. “I find this intriguing, dramatic and moving, but not often represented in the artistic arenas; thus, it’s an idea for an accessible exhibit for our community. It’s exciting.”
    Everyone is welcome at the Saturday, May 6 reception from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Visit https://lamorindaarts.org/ekphrasis/.

Art Gallery at Wilder: Figurative and Abstract Paintings
    Award-winning Walnut Creek artist Mary Claire Stotler’s figurative and abstract paintings exhibit is extended through May for attendees to revel in this self-described “a little sassy and crazy” artist’s works.
    Stotler said the arts are her passion.
    “As a teen, I took classes at the Art Institute of Chicago. I got to see the paintings of Monet, Degas, Manet, Gauguin and my favorite –Vincent van Gogh,” said Stotler. “They become ingrained in my brain. They’re like old friends when you see them.”
    Moving to Miami, she became a potter and designed murals.
    “Then I went to clay on the wheel,” she said. “When I moved here, I joined a painting class with Mary Ann Brown and did abstract watercolors. Later, I learned to paint in the plein air style with another well-known California painter – Pam Glover. What fun. So now I paint in abstracts, fantasy abstracts and in the plein-air style. Lucky me.”
    Explaining her creative process, Stotler said, “I usually turn on the music in my gazebo and listen and then maybe I dance a little bit and let the feeling and energy flow.”
    The Wilder Art and Garden Center is located at 20 Orinda Fields Lane. To schedule a viewing appointment, contact Curator Ani Breslin at anistonbreslin@berkeley.edu. For more information, call the Lamorinda Arts Council at 925.359.9940.

David Fonseca can be reached at davef52@gmailcom.

(Courtesy of Mary Claire Stotler)
Just in time to coincide with Orinda’s characteristic colorful spring is Carnival of Colors, an acrylic 22” x 30” abstract painting by Mary Claire Stotler. View this and other works by her this month at the Art Gallery at Wilder, by appointment only.

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