Once again the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum
outdid itself with the opening of their annual Birds in Art
More than 600 international artists in a wide variety of media submit more than 1,000 hopeful pieces to the jury each year, and only a lucky 120 or so are included in the show. The caliber of art and artists is absolutely top notch, and the museum staff go out of their way to make the exhibition experience a great one for artists and art-lovers.
It's always a special honor to be included in the show, but it was extra-fun to be a part of this year's 40th anniversary festivities.
The opening weekend is a busy one, with multiple receptions, an artists' luncheon, a patron dinner, and "Artists in Action" demonstrations. And of course someone you know had to take the opportunity to talk to people about reduction linocuts
A great variety of media were represented by demonstrations: including oil and acrylic by Robert Bateman
and charcoal by Karen Bondarchuk
. Wendy Brockman
and Derek Robertson
shared watercolor techniques, scratchboard got its day in the sun with Cathy Sheeter
, and owlman Clarence Cameron
demonstrated stone carving magic... but the real show-stealer was sculptor Paul Rhymer
, who poured bronze right there in the museum garden. (And sorry, I don't remember who else was giving demos because I never got out from behind my table!)
|Paul Rhymer pours bronze. Show off. (LYWAM photos)|
Also during the Saturday morning opening, previously-honored Master Artists shared their Birds in Art
memories in a presentation called "7 x 7 x 7." The seven artists each had seven minutes to share seven slides... and if they went over time museum Director Kathy Foley was there with a gong to shoo them off the stage. Great fun.
| LYWAM Director Kathy Foley keeps speakers on track. (LYWAM photo)|
One of the best aspects of the show is the opportunity for the participating artists to just spend time together, talking shop (and sometimes talking smack) and catching up with what everyone's up to. The bulk of this happens "up north" at a barbeque at the Woodson family property. The icing on the cake? How about a cake decorated with details of the work of all the exhibition artists!
|Can you find my pelican? Lower right.|
Yep. I think I've mentioned that the Woodson staff go all out for this event.
This year each of us also received a new little buddy: a Birds in Art
ducky! Our duckies are charged with going forth into the world and sending back photos of their exploits, so of course mine is already getting around. If you want to follow them, then #birdsinartducky is your hashtag. Me, I don't use Twitter, but the museum does, so you can follow along with the fun. Or you can check out the Woodson Museum's Facebook page
, which has gone quite humorously yellow already.
You might think it's impossible for the museum follow a weekend like that with any more excitement, but you would be mistaken. Yesterday morning I received an email from Curator Jane Weinke... letting me know that the Woodson Art Museum will be acquiring my piece, "Cruisin'," for its permanent collection. Holy duckies, Batman! Err... Birdman. It's a darn good thing the next exhibition is a year away. I'm going to need that much time to get down off this cloud.
In the meantime, I'll be facilitating an Illustrated Journal workshop at Buffalo Peaks Ranch
this weekend and opening the autumn exhibition at Oh Be Joyful Gallery
in Crested Butte next week. Of course I'll also be getting back to work in the studio with a full dose of inspiration and motivation. And a yellow ducky.