The Jerome Artists’ Cooperative Gallery kicks off the Holiday Season with their annual “Members Holiday Show.” This is a full-on fun event to see and experience since all thirty-five Co-op members participate in this show with new work and holiday themed works that might only be on display during this time of year.
Kicking off the holiday season, mixed media artist Marjorie Claus (yes, related to Santa!) associates red as a fun, outgoing, lively color. Therefore, it is aptly used in her new abstract horse, “Red,” where she strives to capture movement and essence in favor of precise rendering of her subject. Marjorie admits, “I love red for its aliveness and how it reminds me of Arizona in so many ways, especially the feelings of hot deserts and beautiful sunsets. My idea of painting my horse red is to simply bring attention to the red color. As such, red becomes the subject.”
Photographer Mark Foltz finds inspiration anywhere he goes. In the case of, “Road Trip Memories,” the old car door reminded him of when he was a kid in the back seat of the old Desoto. He recalls,” I enjoyed watching stuff go by as much as I enjoyed anywhere we stopped.”
In “Evening Lull,” Foltz enjoys the time between the day tourists and the evening bar scene. He notes, “There’s a brief period when there’s nothing happening. I love this time of day. It feels like Jerome is catching its breath between workouts!”
Magic is a part of any holiday season, and V. Norton brings this subject to life in her new mask entitled, “Magic Spirit.” This creation is part of the new, evolving round shape with horsehair that she has been working with recently. “It takes two firings to create the finished product,” she states. “The first is in the kiln which hardens the clays and sets the colors. The second firing is in the actual fire, a primitive style used for centuries by clay people. This firing is the one that adds the feeling of timelessness I am after.” Standing about 12 inches tall, what makes this mask unique is that there are feathers as well as the horsehair and shell beads as decorative elements. “I am lucky,” said Norton, “because I have a friend who has an aviary of exotic birds. Therefore, I have a source for feathers. Ancient ruins have shown evidence of these types of feathers being used in ceremony, implying a trade with distant cultures. Since birds naturally molt, there is no harm to use their discarded feathers as they grow the new ones. Norton has travelled to Mexico, North and South America, Europe and Africa. “In every country,” she says, I have seen the indigenous people creating their masks for many ceremonial reasons. I am sure I have been influenced by my journeys,” says Norton, “but often I cannot tell you exactly how. The clay gives me my direction when I start to work with it.”
Mosaic artist, Janet Farwell, has a variety of offerings at the Holiday Show. Her work includes colorful ornaments, trinket boxes, and mosaic pictures featuring whimsical children. One of her pieces, “Christmas Cookies” is sure to bring memories to mind, and her “Holiday Ornaments” capture both winter and holiday childhood memories that we all may have in common.