National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC

The National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC was founded by Congress in 1962. Its mission is to tell the story of the people who shaped America, through portraiture. The gallery houses the only complete collection of presidential portraits outside the White House. I had been several times before, but wanted to see the Obama portraits. Along with the presidential portrait galleries, the museum always features … Continue reading National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC

Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), Harbourfront Centre and the Distillery District, Toronto, Ontario (day three)

My last day in Toronto was a short one as I had a late afternoon flight to catch. I still had places I wanted to see on my list, and unfortunately had to postpone a few artist studio visits until my next trip. The day was grey and blustery, and a snowstorm was expected to hit the city pretty hard. Continue reading Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), Harbourfront Centre and the Distillery District, Toronto, Ontario (day three)

Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), and a few great neighborhoods, Toronto, Ontario (day two)

I started day two in Toronto by arriving at the Art Gallery of Ontario as soon as it opened. I was excited to see the Diane Arbus show, as I have always loved her photographs, and she was the topic of one of the art history lectures at a Seattle lecture series I’ve been attending this year. I had a renewed interest in her, and her work and even learned that her name is pronounced “Dionne.” I never knew that. Continue reading Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), and a few great neighborhoods, Toronto, Ontario (day two)

The Gardiner Museum, Bata Shoe Museum and MOCA Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

I got a chance to go to Toronto right before the Coronavirus outbreak, so I now feel especially fortunate to have been able to see so much. I had never been to Toronto before but, having enjoyed everywhere else I’d been to in Canada, I was excited to explore. I got an old fashioned paper map from the hotel and plotted out the two and … Continue reading The Gardiner Museum, Bata Shoe Museum and MOCA Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

Glenstone in Potomac, MD

In 2006 the Glenstone Foundation opened a not-for-profit modern and contemporary art museum in Potomac, Maryland. I spent a recent Sunday afternoon at Glenstone and was delighted that the weather was mild and sunny. The Pavilions, completed in late 2018, added 50,000 square feet for additional exhibition space. The 300 acres it is situated on is comprised of woodland trails to the outdoor sculptures, pavilions … Continue reading Glenstone in Potomac, MD

Studio Visit: Justin Duffus in Seattle, WA

I met Justin Duffus in 2015, and I’ve loved his paintings and drawings ever since. Justin works in a nicely lit studio, in the Georgetown neighborhood of Seattle, when he is not teaching painting. His studio is surrounded by shipping containers, and you have to walk on the roof of one to get into his workspace. It’s cool. Originally from Pasadena, Justin studied at the … Continue reading Studio Visit: Justin Duffus in Seattle, WA

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, MA and the “Glass Flowers” in Cambridge, MA

My friend Janine is heading to Boston for a quick trip next month and over our favorite cocktails last week she asked me what art she should see when she is there. While Boston is full of good art, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the Ware Collection of Blaschka Glass Models of Plants (or simply the ‘Glass Flowers’) at the Harvard Museum of Natural … Continue reading Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, MA and the “Glass Flowers” in Cambridge, MA

Seattle Asian Art Museum in Seattle, WA

Still operating with the same boiler since its opening in 1933, the Seattle Asian Art Museum has reopened after a two-year and $56 million, top-to-bottom renovation. I had a chance to go to the opening night event, and was pleased to see how well they had preserved the beautiful Art Deco building—home to the Seattle Art Museum’s Asian Art collection and set in the midst … Continue reading Seattle Asian Art Museum in Seattle, WA

30 Americans at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO and The Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, PA

It’s unusual to get to see the exact same art show in two different cities, only months apart. I first saw “30 Americans” at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, this past summer. Then, right after Art Basel, in December, I went to Philadelphia and saw “30 Americans” again at The Barnes Foundation. It was fun and interesting to see the same work displayed at different venues. The traveling exhibition was conceived of and put on by the Rubell family, The exhibit was first on display at the Rubell Museum in Miami, FL and has been traveling for almost ten years, with only three more locations to go. Continue reading 30 Americans at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO and The Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, PA

Fay Jones in Seattle, WA

When my family and I first moved to Seattle in 2006, we began to frequent (and still do) a wonderful restaurant in our neighborhood that had the most stunning paintings. Each time we went, we would talk about how much we liked them. I finally asked who the artist was, and learned it was Fay Jones. I admittedly was a bit in culture shock moving to the West Coast after living on the East Coast my entire adult life, and somehow these paintings always made me feel at home. Continue reading Fay Jones in Seattle, WA

Carol Gouthro in Bellevue, WA

Carol Gouthro is a Seattle-based, Canadian-American ceramic artist and educator, whose work is presently featured in the Forum at the Bellevue Art Museum. Carol creates her own fantastical world, which features extraordinary species from her own imagination. Each piece comes with its own pseudo-scientific name. Writes Gouthro, “After many years of closely observing and collecting plants and constructing vessel forms that transformed into plant forms, I began inventing my own hybrid flower/animal species using botanical nomenclature as my departure point.” Continue reading Carol Gouthro in Bellevue, WA

Radius Gallery in Missoula, MT

One of my favorite parts of being involved in the clay and art community is meeting people from all over the country and world, thanks to the Internet. After moving to Seattle from the East Coast in 2006, I’ve been able to explore parts of the country that I frankly had never thought about. I’ve learned that Montana is a hotbed of ceramic artists. I have taken workshops from a range of Montana artists, and on whole have found them… Continue reading Radius Gallery in Missoula, MT

The SF Museum of Modern Art and SFO Airport in San Francisco, CA

I had not been to the newly expanded San Francisco Museum of Modern Art since it reopened in May of 2016. I was impressed by its beautifully lit gallery spaces, overall size (170,000 square feet of exhibition space) and design. They have over 33,000 works of art in their permanent collection. I was hopeful that they would have one of the two paintings that they own by Bay Area artist Roland Petersen on view, but no such luck. I was enamored nevertheless. Continue reading The SF Museum of Modern Art and SFO Airport in San Francisco, CA

Annabeth Rosen in San Francisco, CA

I have been a bit obsessed with the work of Annabeth Rosen for quite some time, yet had never before seen it in person. Best known for her sculptural work, Fired, Broken, Gathered, Heaped, at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco, chronicles over 20 years of Rosen’s work in ceramics. Raised in Brooklyn, Rosen has taught ceramic art at the college level for 30 … Continue reading Annabeth Rosen in San Francisco, CA

New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) in Miami, FL

I used to stay at the hotel in Miami Beach in which NADA was held. It was easy to walk through multiple times, but the lighting was bad. NADA has always been a favorite show of mine as the art was cool, but the venue never felt right. That hotel was damaged in a hurricane and remains abandoned, and NADA is now housed at Ice Palace Studios. While a bit harder to get to, the venue is fitting for one of the must-see shows during Art Basel. Last year they had 134 exhibitors and approximately 15,000 visitors. They first launched the fair in 2003. I think this was the best year yet.

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Design Miami in Miami Beach, FL

As the Art Basel fairs have grown, I’ve gotten smarter, and have been staying longer. Even with that, it’s hard to fit everything in. This was my first time attending the Design Miami show, and it was the most beautiful of all of the art fairs. The galleries were obviously carefully selected and the booths were well-curated. Design Miami is not to be missed.

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INK Miami Art Fair in Miami Beach, FL

I’m stepping away from the classic Art Basel fairs, to tie in the INK Miami Art Fair. Like Aqua, INK takes place at a Miami motel. The galleries are on the first floor, and many of the gallery owners stay on the second floor. The show has an open courtyard feel, and after all the years of tagging along with my brother and sister-in-law I’ve come to know the different galleries, owners, staff and the work they showcase. INK, on a whole, couldn’t be more welcoming… Continue reading INK Miami Art Fair in Miami Beach, FL

Meridians at Art Basel in Miami Beach, FL

The Miami Beach Convention Center has been newly renovated, and completed, since last year’s Art Basel. Meridians, curated by Magali Arriola, presented 34 large-scale projects that cannot normally be shown at an art fair. Directly upstairs (via an escalator) from the exhibition hall of Art Basel were large-scale sculptures and paintings, live performances, installations and video projections in about 60,000 square feet of space. Continue reading Meridians at Art Basel in Miami Beach, FL

Art Miami and Context Art Miami in Miami, FL

Art Miami and Context Art Miami are in two adjacent tents located in Miami, FL. They are easy to get to from South Beach, but you have to take into account traffic. It took me an hour to get there, and 12 minutes to get back to my hotel. I went preview night and purposely went to Art Miami first, and to Context with an hour to spare. Art Miami was super… Continue reading Art Miami and Context Art Miami in Miami, FL

Pulse Miami Beach in Miami Beach, FL

Pulse is in a temporary tent, very close to the UNTITLED tent. I got there for the opening VIP brunch, which was actually quite fun. It’s hard to beat the weather in Miami (indoor/outdoor brunch at 11 a.m. in December) and the CBD cocktails and CBD popsicles were quite the hit with the crowd. This is the 15th year for Pulse, with 65 exhibitors. Last year they had 10,000 visitors. Continue reading Pulse Miami Beach in Miami Beach, FL

Scope Miami Beach in Miami Beach, FL

Scope Miami Beach is another fair that makes its home in a tent, right on the beach. Scope has 134 exhibitors, and is in its 19th year. Last year they saw 60,000 visitors. The artwork I was drawn to at Scope happened to all include some sort of cool process or the repurposing of materials. I really enjoyed learning about the artists and their processes, whether from the gallery owners, employees, or the artists themselves. Continue reading Scope Miami Beach in Miami Beach, FL

Aqua Art Miami in Miami Beach, FL

Aqua Art Miami, takes place in a classic South Beach Miami two story motel. The furniture is all removed and each gallery takes over a room. I look forward to going every year but was disappointed this year as some of my favorite galleries from years past were not there, and the work in general wasn’t very appealing to me. Aqua features 47 exhibitions… Continue reading Aqua Art Miami in Miami Beach, FL

Manetti Shrem permanent collection in Davis, CA

Soon, I’ll be showing more work by Wayne Thiebaud (b. 1920), Roland Petersen (b. 1926) and Robert Arneson (1930-92) from other museums that I’ve recently visited in California. I did want you to see these pieces from the show Landscape Without Boundaries: Selections from the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art which runs through December 15, 2019. This is the museum where I’d gone to see the Kathy Butterly show. Continue reading Manetti Shrem permanent collection in Davis, CA

Kathy Butterly in Davis, CA

I started following Kathy Butterly in 2016 when I saw her work at the Seattle Art Fair, and have been an avid fan since. I only wish I had purchased a piece back then. It’s been fun to watch her star power rise over the years. Butterly casts her pieces, often from store bought vases, and then manipulates them until she is happy with the form. Since the late 1980s she has made small scale ceramic objects ranging in height from three to nine inches. Continue reading Kathy Butterly in Davis, CA

Viola Frey in Sonoma, CA

I’m starting my blog with one of my favorite artists. Viola Frey’s career retrospective is at the di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art in Sonoma, CA. The exhibition features over 100 pieces and runs though December 29th. The prolific Viola Frey, died in 2002 at the age of 70 in Oakland, CA. She was once a professor at California College of the Arts. Frey worked in sculpture, painting and drawing. Her larger than life colorful clay sculptures… Continue reading Viola Frey in Sonoma, CA