“Glass isn’t just for windows!” he exclaims cheerfully. Using traditional stained-glass methods, Fred’s work is a blend of both classic and modern. “The stained glass medium not only deals in colors but also in texture, both of which can lend a dimensional effect to a piece, as well as one that will change with the intensity of the light throughout the day.”
Friday, September 13, 2013
Our Glass Obsession: New Works by Isabel Mathieson and Fred Reinhardt. October 5th through December 5th 2013
“Our Glass Obsession” :
New Works by Isabel Mathieson and Fred Reinhardt.
Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery
PO Box 233/ 503 Main St
Jerome AZ 86331
Publicity Chairperson: Ellen Jo Roberts
For Immediate Release:
“Our Glass Obsession” : New Works by Isabel Mathieson and Fred Reinhardt. Opens at the Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery on October 5th
“Glass has always intrigued me. I have always loved glass and collected glass,” said Isabel “Chacha” Mathieson, in trying to explain her obsession with this amazing material. Even when cooled to a solid form it manages to retain its liquid appearance, a swirl of colors and clarity. Chacha and fellow glass artist Fred Reinhardt will share their mutual fascination by showcasing new works in “Our Glass Obsession”, a featured show at the Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery opening Saturday, October 5th.
Both long-time members of the co-op, Mathieson and Reinhardt have very different styles when it comes to glass, yet both share a brilliant color sense and passion for pattern and texture.
Isabel Mathieson, known by many as Chacha, is a third generation Arizonan, born in Jerome’s United Verde Hospital, now known as the Jerome Grand Hotel. Jerome plays an important part in Chacha’s family history. Her grandparents were both originally from Jalisco, Mexico, and met and married in El Paso, Texas. They moved to Jerome when Arizona was only a territory, settling on Main Street in 1910 where they lived with their children, one of which was Chacha’s mother. Chacha’s parents met in Jerome, married in 1940 and their family grew there for a time, prior to moving to San Manuel in Pinal County northeast of Tucson. After World War II, plexi-glass became plentiful and Chacha’s father, Frank Gallego began experimenting with it. He started out making lamps with shades and matching picture frames, carving roses and cactus into the plexi-glass. When orders were plentiful he created his art studio, Gallego Carvings, specializing in jewelry. “I remember watching him as he carved roses and cactus for pendants and earrings,” Chacha recalls, inspired by his talents, “As we were able to handle it, my dad taught us to use the grinder, buffer, and drills, and attach findings on the earrings and pendants. My dad and mother were always teaching and encouraging us to develop our own artistic talents.”
By the time Chacha was in high school, she acquired her father’s skill for plexi-glass carving. She continued to live in the surrounding area of San Manuel, carving out a career in city and county government while also managing to raise a family. During her 41-year career, Chacha took evening classes, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Office Management. Three years prior to retiring, she decided to learn about stained glass, “a lifelong desire.” One instructor introduced her to fused glass, also referred to as kiln-formed glass, and she fell in love with it.
Her fused glass is an assemblage based on a design or pattern,“ I draw out my patterns and select glass colors. Either way, I hand cut each piece of glass and sometimes I use machinery for curves and intricate cuts. Then I grind, clean the pieces and assemble them like a puzzle.” The assembled piece is put in the kiln to fuse, a process which takes 15 to 18 hours to complete, depending on the size and thickness of the piece.. A second process called the slump phase shapes the piece, “After the full fuse, in order to shape the glass into a pre-selected plate or bowl I use a mold for the slumping phase. ”
Upon retirement, with her children grown, Chacha returned to her roots in the Verde Valley, and furthered her education in the art via additional glass classes.
Chacha states, “I love Jerome and the Verde Valley— it brings back so many happy memories of my family and childhood days. With the love of glass art, my wish is that my creations will bring as much joy to all those who use them as they do for me in creating them.”
Nebraska-native Fred Reinhardt has been involved with photography, printing and graphic arts since he was honorably discharged from the US Navy in 1969. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Omaha’s Creighton University in 1972. The Reinhardts moved to Cottonwood, Arizona in 1981 and soon after purchased a small print shop and started the local ads and TV-listings publication, The Ad King. Fred retired from his newspaper business in 2007, allowing him more time to devote to his glass art.
“My glass obsession started in the late fall of 1996 when the owner of the local stained glass shops persuaded me to take a stained glass class, explained Mr. Reinhardt.The six week course covered the basics: glass selection, grinding, foiling, soldering and finishing. Fred enjoyed the results of those early lessons and continued to develop his skills with more complex designs. “The more complicated the piece the more imagination, and the more imagination the more time you take to select your glass. At a certain time you realize that the local stained glass shops have a limited supply, so you venture out to the big city to see a larger selection of glass colors and textures. That is the time you develop an obsession with glass…You can never have enough glass.”
Though he has no formal training in fine art, his innate knack for graphics, color and composition are evident in the bold style of his stained glass. His glasswork often depicts sunny desert landscapes, starry nights and other easily recognizable nature scenes, though Reinhardt also showcases fine mastery of abstract designs as well. He exhibits a keen sense of whimsy with many of his pieces, including his popular snowflake and star pieces. A fan favorite? His small terra-cotta pot-bound cactus plants.
“Our Glass Obsession” opens Saturday, October 5th, 2013, 5:30pm-8:30pm in conjunction with Jerome’s popular first Saturday ARTwalk event. The Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery is located at 502 Main, in the former Hotel Jerome. Gallery hours are 10am-6pm daily. The show runs through December 5th.
For more information visit www.jeromecoop.com or call 928-639-4276
Monday, July 15, 2013
“On Being Present...”
All new work by watercolor artist Judy Jaaskelainen
at Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery.
Opening celebration: Saturday Aug. 3rd, 5-8 P.M.
“My best artwork is not usually inspired by going off and seeking ‘something to paint’”, explains watercolorist Judy Jaaskelainen, “They are images that I happen upon and have the urge to stop time or somehow cause those moments to pass more slowly so that I can fully appreciate the experience.”
This is what happened to Ms. Jaaskelainen several Octobers ago while exploring the ruins at Canyon de Chelly in far Northeastern Arizona, “ I was walking up to get a closer look at the base of the magnificent Spider Woman Rock. As I approached it a small whirlwind traveled across my path toward the stately pinnacle and it lifted and swirled the autumn yellow cottonwood leaves in a spiral that danced around the base of the rock. I stood mesmerized. I have not yet painted that picture but it is high on my list.”
Canyon de Chelly has provided inspiration for the artist before. “In February in 1995, I was in the canyon with a group of photographers. It was snowing softly and everyone had their light meters out searching for an image to photograph in the low-light conditions. I did that too, for a few minutes but then with my camera to my eye I happened to focus on all of the other photographers in their bright colored parkas, standing in various poses hovered over their equipment to keep the snow from landing on it. It was unexpected and was great fun to use that composition in one of my watercolor paintings later that I titled, ‘The Eye of the Beholder’.”
Ms. Jaaskelainen’s open-hearted way of seeing is the key to her art.“At one of our local Farmer’s Markets one evening a young woman passed by dancing to the music of Dave Rentz and John Ziegler,” recalls Jaaskelainen, “She had on a colorful cap and bell-bottom jeans. As usual, I had my camera with me and took a photo of her. Years later I was attending one of Patty Mikles’ Advanced Watercolor classes at Yavapai College and we were toying with ‘distorting the perspective of common subjects’. Looking through my resource photos I came upon that image and another of a clarinet player from Flagstaff who had performed at one of the Opening Receptions at our gallery. He was hunkered down near the stairwell with his clarinet in his hand. My paintings ‘Old Town Dancer’, and ‘Sox to Match’, both, were so much fun to create and actually won awards in juried shows later that year.”
The artist finds inspiration in the day-to-day scenery of her historic Clarkdale, Arizona neighborhood. “My neighbor, Kahlil has a collection of the retro-metal lawn chairs. One day while walking my dog, Gus, I glanced over at Kahlil’s backyard and saw he had all of his old chairs lined up along one wall of his house. It was winter but the sun was bright and it created fascinating tangled shadows on the ground and wall from the tubular frames of the chairs. Of course I had my camera with me, took a few photos. My watercolor, ‘Warm Winter Sun’, another award winner, was the result.”
The new paintings Ms. Jaaskelainen is presenting as the featured artist at Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery Saturday August 3 thru October 3, 2013, are more examples of her experience of life happening on a daily basis. The artist enjoys scenes that cause her to want to stop,“ take a deep breath, and savor a moment here and there.” She extends her thanks to Cornville wood artist Phil Wright for creating some of the beautiful frames used in the exhibit .
A new painting, “Moon-gazer”, is from photos taken of a young woman who was wearing a lovely beaded head cover, bent over looking at some piece of jewelry that caught her eye at the Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery. “I asked if I could photograph her and she said, ‘Sure!’ Sorting through my resources over the past few months I knew when I looked at that photograph again that I would have fun composing a painting using that image. It was! Painting each bead was like a meditation… very calming…. And the moon…..well, I love the moon.”
In addition to her new work at the Cooperative Gallery, Judy Jaaskelainen is also an participating member of the Verde Artist Challenge. “I was invited to join 24 other artists in April, to do a three day kayak trip down the Verde River, arranged by the Verde Valley Land Preservation and funded by a grant. One of the goals was for the artists to develop an emotional connection to our beautiful river and be inspired to create art that exemplifies our experience. The hope is that the persons who will see the exhibit of the “river art” will also develop a connection and sensitivity to the beauty and importance of all rivers, the Verde River in particular.” “A River Runs Through Us”, a traveling exhibit featuring the art inspired by the river and the kayak trip, will be seen throughout Arizona. The art will be available for purchase through an online auction with the proceeds going toward further river preservation efforts. The paintings, sculptures, and photographs are scheduled to be presented to the public at the group’s opening reception Saturday, July 27 from 6:00 to 8:00pm at the Manheim Gallery in Old Town Cottonwood. The show will be on display there through the end of August.
“On Being Present…” is dedicated to Ms. Jaaskelainen’s mother.“She not only taught me to walk and talk, but also to ‘see’,” explains the artist, “She would be 100 years-old this year, in November. I miss her every day.”
Opening Reception is on Saturday Aug. 3rd, 5-8 P.M. at Jerome Artist’s Cooperative Gallery, 502 Main Street, Jerome, Arizona 86331 (928-639-4276) www.jeromecoop.com
This exhibit can also be seen daily during regular gallery hours from 10 A.M. to 6 P.M. thru Oct. 3rd, 2013.
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery Set to Rock the Mountain with Annual Summer Membership Show: “Jerome Rocks!”
The now infamous attention-grabbing bumper sticker that proudly proclaims, “Jerome, Arizona- Population: Strange” is only part of the story; the whole truth is, Jerome rocks! The member-artists of the Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery on Main Street are preparing to prove why their historic hotel gallery is a major contributor to the town’s popularity when they unleash their artistic interpretations of “Jerome Rocks” in the annual Summer Membership Show next month. The exhibition will open on Saturday, July 6th in conjunction with the town’s First Saturday Art Walk and continue until August 1st.
Many of the 35 artists especially look forward to the annual membership shows- the first of which falls during the fall holiday season, and the second in the summer- because only then are they allowed by gallery regulation to show works from media other than their specific juried category. It is not unusual to see a painter show off secret talents in ceramics or a glassblower showcase a jewelry series . Of course, visitors can also look forward to catching up with favorite artists and their latest juried works as well.
The Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery currently boasts several members who signed on 17 years ago at its inception, many others who joined and have stayed on over the ensuing years, and juried newcomers who have waited patiently for their turn to claim a space inside the beloved gallery. The one attribute shared by all, however, is a personal and professional commitment to continued innovation, industry and creative thinking when it comes to new ideas and production of their own art. The group recently welcomed two new member/artists, Don Voss and Christine Ryback. Don’s acrylic paintings which center on the form of sacred geometric mandalas and Christine’s very unique and ironically delicate cement leaves are most welcome additions to the gallery collection.
The 2013 Summer Membership Show, “Jerome Rocks!” opens on Saturday July 6th, with a reception from 5:00pm- 8:00pm. Join the artists for a rockin’ good time!
The gallery is open daily from 10am-6pm and located at 502 Main, in the former Hotel Jerome. For more information visit http://www.jeromecoop.com or call 928-639-4276.