Monday, November 26, 2012

Very Funny!!

Exploring The San Diego Art Scene

Traveling to San Diego this month for fun, I had a wonderful opportunity to explore galleries and museums.  I was excited to check out the latest art around the area.  What I found, however, was the proverbial mixed bag.  My first outing was to visit the La Jolla Contemporary Art Museum.  Being interested mostly in viewing 2D paintings, my review of the collection was 'just OK'.  Two Georgia O'keefe paintings and one Maynard Dixon sparkled amidst 'contemporary?' Ashcan painter, George Bellows (1900), Bierstadt, Moran, Inness, etc. early American works which were so dark I was seriously prompted to look around for a restorer.  That plus my understanding of the term 'contemporary', left me in a quandary. Visiting galleries in downtown San Diego with a dear friend, we looked at current art in 5 galleries.  So disappointing.  Both of us were hoping to find at least interesting art but that didn't happen.  Others may debate the place of graphic design, cartooning, or psychedelic illustration in fine art, but I think I have a clear grasp of the difference.  The afternoon was saved by the Fish Market on the wharf, where we were sated with clam chowder, great bread, sauteed baby artichokes and calamari.  Delicious!
Balboa Park was a fabulous photo op with great ideas for genre paintings and mixed media.  Ocean Beach was filled with many satisfying hours of sketching.  I love the Jungle Java Coffee Bar!!  Thanks, Brian and Brenda, for a vacation beyond my most imaginative dreams!!  
Returning to SLC, I was treated to a 24 hr. period of great art experiences (traveling Leonardo da Vinci exhibit...phenomenal!! and a really inspired book exhibit at UMFA).  THEN, an out of this world symphony at Abravanel Hall featuring Hillary Hahn.  She is an amazing performer in every way.  Don't miss hearing her if you have the opportunity!  Thanks Kathy and Marie for LOTS of fun!!
Home now and giving my easel a real workout! :-)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

To Feel The Beauty Of A Line

To feel a line
Drawn over the arc of a hip,
Is to feel the creation
Of beauty.

To feel a line
Portray the curve of a breast,
Is to create sensuality
On a page.

To feel a line
Bowing into the arc of a neck,
Is to be captured
By pure joy.

To feel the beauty of a line
Is to be seized
By a moment
Of absolute delight.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Letter To The America I Loved

When did truth become optional?
The lie de rigueur.

When did education go out fashion?
Graduates who can't read..

When did the arts become passe?
wii, x-box, and huge TV's the most prized.

When did living vicariously through celebrity lives
become more interesting than living as
a unique individual?

When did talking on a cell phone become more
important than talking to a child?

When did 'social values' become fodder
for political gain?

When did blaming become preferable to solving problems?
Political parties declaring war.

When did our bankers and financial leaders give
in to power and greed?
Thus, destroying the world's economies.

When did using up the worlds resources to maintain
our standard of living become more important than
protecting and preserving our wondrous earth
for our grandchildren?

Mary Anne Hoffmann


Friday, March 30, 2012

Introduction To Poetry

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sunday, February 19, 2012

eLetter to Denver Post 02/15/12

I’m pleased about the fair and effective solution in the Obama administration standoff against the American Catholic hierarchy regarding the inclusion of birth control in their medical-employee health care benefits. Balancing the “religious liberty” of church officialdom against those of their diverse employees is more complex than right-wing politicians make it seem. For me, it’s important to keep health-care reform on track, especially given its very lengthy phasing-in period — so conducive to calamity-howlers. Too many of us are prejudging its “terrible cost” (compared to what? ill-considered wars?). But do we remember that our current patchwork, profit-rich health care system is, at 18 percent of GDP, the most expensive in the world — even while leaving millions of us exposed to medical or financial ruin? As a retired health-care chaplain, I can’t help hearing the pain of those unemployed or indigent who are caught in the gaps.

Frank Baysore, Aurora, Co.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Wislawa Szymborska

A dead beetle lies on the path through the field.
Three pairs of legs folded neatly on its belly.
Instead of death's confusion, tidiness and order.
The horror of this sight is moderate,
its scope is strictly local, from the wheat grass to the mint.
The grief is quarantined.
The sky is blue.

To preserve our peace of mind, animals die
more shallowly: they aren't deceased, they're dead.
They leave behind, we'd like to think, less feeling and less world,
departing, we suppose, from a stage less tragic.
Their meek souls never haunt us in the dark,
they know their place,
they show respect.

And so the dead beetle on the path
lies unmourned and shining in the sun.
One glance at it will do for meditation —
clearly nothing much has happened to it.
Important matters are reserved for us,
for our life and our death, a death
that always claims the right of way.

...2 July 1923 - 1 February 2012
Polish Poet, essayist, translator, recipient of Nobel Prize in Literature 1996.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sound Nature: A Proverb Poem

The three great elemental sounds in nature are the sound of rain, the sound of wind in a primeval wood, and the sound of outer ocean on a beach. Henry Beston

Monday, January 2, 2012

A Sonnet For January

Sonnet for January

Branches, vague and stark,
New trees staked against
The earth’s blizzard winds on
A winter’s frozen breast.

Streams, remote and aloof,
White strips of ice holding
Life beneath asleep in
A winter’s frozen breast.

Blasts of the arctic,
Life on hold, quiescent
Secret statuary on
A winter’s frozen breast.

Ordeals for the fearless
So full of life in spring,
Rendered silent by a pulse,
Frozen in a winter’s breast.

M.A. Hoffmann

About Me

My photo
The quote "Art is the only way to run away without leaving home" by Twyla Tharp, best describes the attraction to every part of the painting process for me. Having painted for nearly 25 years intermittently while raising 3 valuable citizens, I took up the endeavor nearly fulltime in 1990. Soaking up art history and technique books, taking workshops with Coleman Cohen, Gifford Nicolaides, Susan Gallagher, Michelle Chrisman, J. K. Drummond, Leo Neufeld, Joe Lorusso. My inspiration is whatever touches my heart. I admire the work of The Boston Women's Artists Guild, the California Impressionists and such contemporary artists as Greg Kreutz, Susan Lyon, Thomas Buechner, Clyde Aspevig. I keep my drawing board occupied with plans for still lifes, floral portraits, and scenes from travels; keeping my enthusiasm vital and fresh.