I was all set to proclaim the current set of three exhibits at the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art the best all-locals showing in recent memory until I found out Mark Beck isn’t local anymore. He moved to Albuquerque.
Still — wow. There was an actual buzz in the main gallery on a recent Sunday afternoon. One guy was on his second visit of the day. Another commented to a companion how glad he was they dropped in. Lingering ensued.
Beck’s large paintings of houses work on two levels for me. I’ve got a thing for paintings of houses anyway, so really, a house is enough for me, but Beck puts social commentary into the mix. Houses washed away in the ocean. Houses in peril.
The show is called “Tyranny of Beauty” and if you let yourself “go there” you can imagine whether anyone is still inside the house, what caused everything to go so wrong and what the happy ending might be.
“It is my aim to create ‘beautiful’ paintings which transcend the superficial look of things to reveal meaning through enigma, allegory and issues about which I care,” Beck says in an artist’s statement.
Done and done. I need a second visit, too. The show runs through Aug. 18.
Jeanette Wolff, who is the newish co-director of the Allied Arts Association Gallery in Cambria, is showing her multimedia collages at SLOMA until July 28. Viewing “Pieced Together” is like looking at a family photo album in an altered state. She uses paint, photos and sewing patterns to piece together her family history.
Wolff hooked me when I noticed she used a See’s candy foil seal to make cameo jewelry for one of her subjects. Creative and colorful all the way around.
“Mermeow” by Terri McArthur greets visitors at the top of the stairs at SLOMA’s McMeen Gallery this month. The combo mermaid/cat doll is part of the Central Coast Craftmakers “A Doll’s Tale: Artist Dolls” juried show. The collection showcases a variety of doll making techniques from paper to felt to fabric.
• • •
You’ve got one more week to get up (or over) to the California Mid-State Fair in Paso Robles. The baked goods on display in the Home Arts Building could be wilting a bit, but the fine arts and photography entries in the Ag/Hort Pavilion are looking as good as the day they were brought in for judging.
How good? I can’t say as I’m writing this before the fair’s opening, but taking a look is always on the must-do list along with seeing what the pigs are up to.
A couple of artists will be demonstrating and talking about their work each day at the pavilion thanks to Studios on the Park, the art center in downtown Paso Robles.
Sharon Gellerman will demonstrate silk marbling from noon to 5 p.m. today, followed by Anne Laddon, who plans to depict calves in a landscape painting from 5 to 10 p.m. The same schedule will follow daily with a variety of artists from Barbara and Rosey Rosenthal showing the relief painting process on Monday to Laure Carlisle focusing on ab stract painting on Friday.
The full schedule is in the official program inserted in The Tribune earlier in the month. It’s also online at http://www.midstatefair.com/daily_schedule.php.