A friend and I had coffee the other afternoon and talked about artsy stuff. She mentioned seeing a short promotional author video. The writer hoped to make a quick connection with potential readers.
“It’s all about me (the viewer),” my friend said. “What’s my relationship to the artist?”
She may be a little exasperated with the Me Generation, but I don’t think she has anything against authors or anyone else drumming up more fans in new and different ways. Once a personal connection is made, we, the audience, are more invested.
Writing about artists, writers, musicians and actors over the years has made it much easier for me to form those bonds, superficial and not.
I have a connection to sculptor Dale Evers that I think about every time I see a brass dolphin in a beachfront yard or hotel patio. Hearing about his current guitar exhibit surprised me because I still think of him as primarily creating large steel works of marine life.
My connection with Evers was made several years ago, when he basically said, “Look, features lady, I am a real artist known beyond the Central Coast and you better get down to my studio and see where the work gets done.”
The link continues at Cuesta College where I enjoy lunching in Cougar Park next to Evers’ beautiful cougar sculpture.
Evers’ collection in “Guitars: The Exhibit” through Sept. 10 at his studio in Paso Robles includes guitar-inspired gates, lighting, wind chimes, tables, and sculptural pieces.
Another area artist who makes me say, “I met this artist. This artist has an interesting history. I like this artist’s paintings. I bet you will like this artist, too,” is Ken Christiansen of Los Osos. I prize a color photocopy of one of his colorful Fauve-inspired scenes of a downtown San Luis Obispo neighborhood.
My Cuesta office building features two Christiansen paintings, so when I showed up as a temp in January I knew I was in the right place. Other well-done pieces line the walls, but it’s the Christiansens that answer the question, “What’s my relationship to the artist?”
Until he books another show locally, you can take a peek at kenchristensen.net/pages.
I’d also like to point out a San Luis Obispo painter highly recommended by Lee Sutter, who previously wrote in this space. Jason Mayr’s “A Quiet Esthetic” will run through the end of the month at Salisbury Fine Art Gallery, 6985 Ontario Road, San Luis Obispo. Open daily. Call 471-3110. As one of my favorite former bosses says, “It’s all about relationships.”
Contact freelance writer Monica Fiscalini at Monica_Jane2000@yahoo.com.