Posts Tagged ‘Tucson Museum of Art’

Halloween 2017

October 29, 2017

Just a photo of one house in my neighborhood.  Makes me think I ought to do something other than give out candy…  No photos of the grandkids in their costumes yet – the night for spooks is two away.


WordPress shut down my adding photos to my blogs, saying that I had used 3.0 GB of my 3.0 GB upload limit (a limit that I didn’t know I had).  Well, considering that my photos tend to be about 13 KB, that I have an average of 5 (or possibly many more) photos per blog, and that I’ve been blogging an average of twice a month for the past seven years, they should have shut me down me four years ago.  So I had to chuck out $99 per year for the Premium Blog, which I did, and now have 3.0 GB out of 13.0 GB upload limit (23%).

Renegade installations


I’ve always liked flash mobs1, including Random Acts Of Classical Music.  These are the visual equivalent – Catskill Yarn Bombers on trees, guerrilla knitting on statues (this one in Portland), Chilean yarn bombers, Lanapuerto, which translates as Wool Port (boat show here).



But now there are flash flowers, Lewis Miller with his pop-up flower installations in New York City (photos of which I saw in the NY Times), and Geoffroy Mottart, a florist in Belgium, who puts flowered beards and wigs on statues because he wants people to pay attention to statues.

TMA continued

Just one of the outfits I photographed from feature exhibition Desert Dweller, the original ad and the outfit, designed by Cele Peterson, who for more than 75 years served as Tucson’s arbiter of fashion and grace, died2… in 2010 at 101.

This photo, right, from the TMA website of the John Chamberlain crushed car sculpture that the museum owns.  Compare that to his humongous sculpture I saw in Berlin: berlin-day-three

Also from the museum collection, this Bill Schenck, Wyoming #44.  I used to own one of his large oils, Psycho Killer (shown on right), but the ex- got it in the divorce, and one of his subsequent wives didn’t like it, so it was sold.  I rather like his kitsch cowboy paintings; wish I still had that one.  Got to know his art when I as working at IBM –  they had a huge triptych of a rodeo scene in their dining room.  So we went to Phoenix  for one of his showings, met him, and bought the painting.

I also like Donna Howell-Sickles And the Dog Jumped Over the Moon.  Her art was inspired by a postcard of a cowgirl c. 1935 seated on a horse captioned “Greetings from a Real Cowgirl from the Ole Southwest”, according to her website.

Canyon Wren is by Kate Breakey. I wrote about her2 when we saw her work at the Stillness show at the Louis Carlos Bernal Gallery, at the Pima College West Campus.  (Sorry – this photo is blurred.)

CAS (TMA’s Contemporary Art Society) bought this large photo, Untitled (Dispatch), Summer by Gregory Crewdson.  From Wikipedia:

Crewdson’s photographs usually take place in small-town America, but are dramatic and cinematic. They feature often disturbing, surreal events. His photographs are elaborately staged and lit using crews familiar with motion picture production and lighting large scenes using motion picture film equipment and techniques.

From our trip to Berlin, TMA purchased two of Argentine artist Tomás Saraceno‘s spider compositions, Semi-Social Mapping of Perdita 0.638 by a Pair of Cyrtophora citricola – Four Heads.  Click on them to see the detail.

Sorry – I never got around to finishing my Berlin blogs.  Can find no photos of the lab so think that we were not allowed to take any.  We saw his studio the last day.  We were told that the spiders are not enclosed, so anyone with arachnophobia should not go in; one woman stayed out. Here are my notes:

Arachnolab – spiders at work.  Senegalese spider in open lab for a couple of weeks… Combining different species for hybrid webs.  Some webs overnight, some a month.  Biologists know which ones can coexist.

Webs natural or sprayed black (ink has linseed oil, so tacky).  After spiders are moved to another frame, paper is put under the web and lifted up.  Food crickets and flies.  Spiders from all over the globe, Croatia, South Africa, South America.  Open frames have spiders working.

I had written about Barbara Rogers in is-it-over.  This, Her Garden: Objects and Sights Remembered # 127, is just a snippet of her commission for the dining room of Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, the largest cruise ship on the ocean (16 decks).

CAS had visited Ellen Wagener‘s home studio in 20124.  This tree she did in black and white pastels, D.H. Lawrence Tree, Kiowa, NM, was donated to the museum by the Greenbergs.

I have many more photos of the exhibits, but it’s late and I’m tired, so this shall have to do.



October 21, 2017


Tucson Museum of Art

After a summer of renovation and expansion, TMA reopened to members Friday night, with new galleries, new feature exhibitions, and new selections from the museum’s permanent collection.  And the public are free this weekend!  Because I hadn’t taken my camera Friday night, I went back for two tours today, one, Dress Matters: Clothing as Metaphor, by our curator, Julie Sasse, another, Desert Dweller, by the CEO, Jeremy Mikolajczak, and a guest curator whose name I didn’t get (both shown at left).

The museum looks totally awesome!  You must go.  Here are a few of the pieces I liked.

Wikipedia says that Nick Cave is a… fabric sculptor, dancer, and performance artist… best known for his Soundsuits: wearable fabric sculptures that are bright, whimsical, and other-worldly. He also trained as a dancer with Alvin Ailey.  Can’t imagine him dancing in this Soundsuit – made from fabric, fiberglass and metal, and covered in sequins, it looks very heavy.

A painting of a ballgown, Unfinished Conversations, by Laura Schiff Bean.


Bob Carey is the photographer and subject of the “Tutu Project.” This series of stunningly silly videos and still self-portraits was originally launched to cheer up his wife, Linda, after she was diagnosed with breast cancer, and later went viral. 5

This lithograph, Untitled (Joseph), by Robert Longo [who, according to Wikipedia] became a rising star in the 1980s for his “Men in the Cities” series, which depicted sharply dressed men and women writhing in contorted emotion.  (Unfortunately, I caught glare and/or reflections on most of these photos.)

Barbara Penn, a professor at the University of Arizona, came in to talk of her sculpture, On a Columnar Self, which she had originally done in 1994, but recreated for the show, and how memorials are being much discussed today (as in the Civil War memorials).  Her mother’s wedding dress on the plinth.  She said the eggs represent creativity to her, but could also be (obviously) fertility.

Angela Ellsworthwas raised as a Mormon; some of her work relates to that upbringing, such as the Seer Bonnet XIX24,182 pearl corsage pins, fabric, steel, and wood.  This series of pioneer bonnets represents the wives of Joseph Smith – this one is ascribed to Flora Ann.

Had to add this photo of Julie talking as I loved the outfit of the woman in pink lavender.

This gorgeous video by Sama Alshaibi – Wasl (Union) deals with climate change and is part of Silsila, a multi-media project depicting Alshaibi’s seven-year cyclic journey through the significant deserts and endangered water sources of the Middle East and North African… Silsila

WordPress has started limiting the amount and size of photos that I put in my blogs (it is free…), so I have to stop here and add more TMA photos to another blog.  On to other topics:


First, Arizona’s governor, Doug Ducey, gives his staff outrageous raises:

Ducey’s PR guy, Daniel Scarpinato… has scored 14 percent in pay raises since Ducey took office in 2015, bringing his salary to $162,000.
…Registrar of Contractors Director Jeff Fleetham, a campaign contributor… snagged a nearly 13 percent raise to $115,000.
…Department of Child Safety Director Greg McKay, whose 33 percent raise has boosted his pay to $215,250. Or Corrections Director Charles Ryan, whose 10 percent raise brought him to $185,000.
[and] …a long-time pal he promoted from assistant director to deputy director of the Department of Administration… Kevin Donnellan scored a 41 percent pay raise, boosting his salary to $161,200. That’s not counting bonuses of $4,836 over the past two years.1

Then he gives teachers only  1%:

…he proposed a four-tenths of 1 percent pay raise for teachers – though ultimately he was pressured to boost the raise to 1 percent.1

When they protested…

Ducey’s office… stated that those receiving raises had assumed additional responsibilities, and the governor has shrunk state government by shedding 978 employees…  The Republic found at least 1,700 state workers had been fired since Ducey took office, with the largest number from DES.

The majority of those fired across the state were over age 40. Older employees are more expensive to the state payroll because they typically have higher wages, cost more to insure, and their pension contributions are higher. Numerous fired workers told The Republic that Ducey appointees also targeted women, minorities, those with disabilities, gays and lesbians.2

The Church

This was on the news the other day:

ROME – A Vatican trial over $500,000 in donations to the pope’s pediatric hospital that were diverted to renovate a cardinal’s penthouse is reaching its conclusion, with neither the cardinal who benefited nor the contractor who was apparently paid twice for the work facing trial.

Instead, the former president of the Bambino Gesu children’s hospital and his ex-treasurer are accused of misappropriating 422,000 euros from the hospital’s fundraising foundation to overhaul the retirement home of Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican Secretary of State. vatican/2017/10/14/

So I wondered if the guys in charge of Wells Fargo’s misfeasance went to jail.  But I didn’t even know about their bank fraud ring:

An Inglewood man convicted of running a bank fraud ring that pilfered more than half a million dollars from Wells Fargo bank and its customers was sentenced to more than seven years in federal prison Thursday.3

Okay – steal $500,000, get seven years in prison.  So shouldn’t that happen to the cardinal and the contractor (who maybe should get 14 years, as he was paid twice)?  But no, I was thinking of the Wells Fargo employees who secretly opened 565,443 credit card accounts without their customers’ knowledge or consent.  Nope, nobody went to jail.  Not only that, but:

…it does not appear that Wells Fargo is requiring its former consumer banking chief Carrie Tolstedt…[who] was in charge of the unit where Wells Fargo employees opened more than 2 million largely unauthorized customer accounts… to give back any of her nine-figure pay… $124.6 million.

Wells Fargo… agreed to pay $185 million… to settle claims that that it defrauded its customers… The bank also said it had fired 5,300 employees over five years related to the bad behavior.4

More pleasant predators

The roadrunner has taken over my yard, and peered at me eating lunch.  And I caught a photo of the Cooper’s hawk at the birdbath.

5Tutu Project

Spring Break

March 25, 2014

Baby Rabbit
Saturday afternoon I was sitting in my kitchen upstairs, the cat resting on the deck, watching the desert. All of a sudden she rushed to the glass slider, her tail completely puffed out, her coat bristling. I let her in and went to see what was out there. A large, beautiful coyote was chasing something in the yard. Couldn’t see what it was, but there are no ground squirrels around and mice and packrats are not out during the day.

I had a feeling it was the baby rabbit I had accidentally uncovered that morning while raking up some leaves next to the house, and where were the parents? Anyway, I yelled at the coyote to get out of the yard, and when he ran between the posts (4” o.c.), he barely got out, and they were vibrating from being pushed apart.

That evening I discovered the rabbit dead in the yard tools room, which the cat gets into via the dog door. So much for interfering with nature. I tossed it over the fence so that the coyote can eat it after all. Sigh.

Some of you may speak disparagingly of cats, but you’d have to have a fish in a tank to keep your pet from eating the flora (a friend said her dogs eat the grasses in the yard and throw up as my cat does, but that’s another story) and fauna. My Airedale ate quail eggs that the bird had laid under a bougainvillea, thinking that the thorns would keep them safe, and another friend’s dog ate a bunch of quail chicks that couldn’t fly yet. (And two children were eaten recently by a python which had escaped from a pet shop in Canada…)

Spring Break
Many of my students were off to Puerto Peñasco, Mexico last week for our spring break (I can feel the sun on my skin and taste the lime squeezing into my Dos Equis cerveza) but admittedly I couldn’t keep up with their soccer game on the beach, so I hosted friends from San Diego in town to see the sights.

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
Seven hours at the Desert Museum, including a nice lunch at their Ocotillo Café.

I thought that the highlight was the Raptor Free Flight. The last time I’d seen only Red-tailed Hawks1.  This time we saw a lyn&price 008Chihuahuan Raven, a Great Horned Owl, a Prairie Falcon, a Ferruginous Hawk, and a Red-tailed Hawk (which flew up to the top of a saguaro and sat there watching the desert, rather than flying over us and eating its treat). Missed some of the shots as they flew so fast and what seemed to be a few inches over our heads!

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Check out the web site – their photos are better:  (I should have read it more closely before we had gone. We could have done the Raptor Free Flight again in the afternoon and seen a Gray Hawk, a Barn Owl, a Peregrine falcon, and a Harris’s Hawk.)

We saw the entire site! The weather, of course, was beautiful. (Sorry, you people back east still getting snow. It was 82°.)

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Tucson Museum of Art
We spent another day at the Tucson Museum of Art. Miradas: Ancient Roots in Modern and Contemporary Mexican Art Works from the Bank of America Collection and Rose Cabat at 100 [as in years old!]: A Retrospective Exhibition of Ceramics. Loved Rose’s ceramics!  Photos were not allowed as these were private collections, so photos from TMA’s website.

rose cabatHernandez(Both days were free as I am a member of both the Desert Museum and TMA and have guest passes. But when we got to the Pima Air & Space Museum “we” – as in P. – coughed up money – you would think that it was Disneyland!)

Pima Air & Space Museum
The Pima Air & Space Museum is located next to Davis Monthan Air Force Base.  In my 40+ years in Tucson, I had never been there.  (Assigned the babysitter to take the kids.)  We got there when it lyn&price 053opened to catch a bus for the “Boneyard” (the 309th Aerospace Maintenance And Regeneration Group – AMARG) bus tour. The 4,000+ aircraft and 13 aerospace vehicles are from the U.S. Air Force, Navy-Marine Corps, Army, Coast Guard, and several federal agencies including NASA in varying degrees of storage or being regenerated/recycled. I tried, in photos, to convey how many there are.

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lyn&price 062We made the mistake of then getting on the 1-hour Tram Tour that takes passengers through the Museum’s 80 acres on a 1.5 mile circuit to view more than 150 planes. (The Boneyard is part of Davis Monthan; this is part of the Museum, which runs on volunteers and the fees to take the tours – no government dollars.) Even P, who wanted to see all of the planes, having jumped out of a few of them, got overload.

The volunteer docents for both the bus and the tram, retired Service people, were great – they recited details about all of the planes without even looking at notes!

lyn&price 059The main Museum building had a variety of interesting planes, such as this tiny one.

Hangar 3, with a B-17 and bomber jackets and photos of guys who flew in them in WWII, also had one of the pilots!  Richard Bushong, Colonel USAF Retired, 91. He was telling stories of the war (as he does each Thursday) and autographing his book.

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Art Happenings

April 2, 2013

When I was reframing one of my photographs for the House Tour montage1the previous weekend I broke the glass (second time in two months!) so looked up what I thought was the address of the last place I’d gone, but ended up at DeadWood Picture Framing in an alley off 6th.  The last glass I had gotten for $25, this for $13.

When I went back to pick up the newly glassed photo, the proprietor, Bob, said Hi Lynne as if I were a steady customer.  He then introduced me to the other customer there, Nick Georgiou, who creates meticulously hand-stitched newsprint sculptures  such as the huge one I was perusing (my photo, here) which shall be in a show in New York6.  Nick (nice guy) gave me his web address:  Check it out!

Then, chatting with Bob, mentioned Kate Breakey’s exhibit (see my last blog1) and he said Oh yeah, we did her framing.  Makes me feel like one of Tucson’s Art World.  Well, I have a foot in the door.  (OK, just a toe.)  Sold one of Cuban photos at the Cuba reunion party, Face on the Building2,and sold the second, Laundry, at the House Tour.  But, hint, I’m not selling them for the $5,500 Kate’s selling hers for.  Let’s say mine cigar woman shrunkare more accessible art.

Friend Moira (who had the Cuba reunion and who was mentioned in my blog, Grasslands3 – check out her web site for her terrific art4) is now putting together a Pop Up Art Happening, a one-day flower girl 14x24exhibit, 10am to 5pm on April 20th, at the old Borderlands Outlet Store, on the N.E. corner of 5th Avenue and 7th Street, before it is turned into a brewery.   (Unfortunately no free beer.)

And she’s asked me to participate.  I’ll have, from my Cuba photos, my three Cuban Dancers on canvas, each 16×20 (also in my last blog1), two photos, Cigar Woman and Flower Girl, that, when they are matted and framed, will be 28×24 and 20×30, respectively, and Malecón Sunset, 24×36 on metal, all shown here.  (I have places for them around my house if they don’t sell.)  Stay tuned.

sunset - 24x36

CAS House Tour

This was fun.  Another member of CAS (Tucson Museum of Art’s Contemporary Art Society) and I took turns showing my house in the morning so that we could visit the other morning properties.

repp housePage Repp’s house on 13th Avenue, just north of the Speedway underpass, has always intrigued me because we had been told in architecture school that he built it as a project when he was in school.   If you’ve driven down Speedway you’ve probably noticed the grey block buildings (naked repp bathblock not allowed here in Starr Pass) with blue siding pop-outs and bright yellow metal railing for the deck.  He built two houses next to each other, and moved into one.  Liked his rebar fence (shown here.)  The rooms are tiny but there are lots of interesting details, like the stacked glass for obscure windows in the bath (shown here at right) and bedroom – but don’t touch as the edges are sharp.

repp officeNext was his office, repp design + construction (architects love not capitalizing and using + rather than and), in what used to be a shoe store on 1st.   Great metal screen in front to block the west sun, and a photo-voltaic array above the vegetated entry.

ratoff resIn the afternoon visited the Ratoff Residence, designed by Les Wallach, whose work you may have seen in the U of A Helen S. Schaefer Building, also known as the Poetry Center, where I have my Humanities classes, or the Desert Museum restaurant complex.

boteroWhat an art collection the Ratoffs have!  Includes a Miro, a Botero (shown here), and two Georgious!  (See top paragraph.)  When the kids were little, in 1990 or so, we had traded houses for a month with a family in Switzerland and did day trips, one of which was to northern Italy where we saw, in I believe Aosta, a sculpture garden full of Botero’s huge nudes. Guess it wasn’t permanent, ‘cause all I could find on the Net was: by the 1990s, outdoor exhibitions of [Botero’s] huge bronze figures were staged around the world to great success.

menI liked the story of Steve Ratoff buying one of Kevin Titzer’s men carved out of driftwood5.  He then asked the dealer to tell him when there’d be another show.  When alerted, he bought the whole collection, sight unseen.  (OK, I did a lousy job putting the two halves together – I have a very cheap = free photoshop.)

Steve had tons more art, and there were more buildings on the tour, but I’m tired so I’ll leave it there.



January 26, 2013

Last night the Tucson Museum of Art opened its new exhibit, Desert Grasslands, curated by Julie Sasse, who I got to know on TMA’s trip to Cuba.  I especially like the photography.   Like these individual strands of grass by Matilda Essig1 and Stephen Strom2.

strom grassEssig grass

This is my favorite of Guggenheim Fellow landscape photographer Michael Berman’s black and white prints.

berman peloncillo mountains

Dornith Doherty uses Xrays.

After receiving x-ray training from CSU’s Radiation Control Office, the artist Dornith Doherty spent the summer of 2009 producing x-ray photographs of seeds and tissue samples of cloned plants.doherty grass[She] digitally manipulates the x-ray shots to create mandala shapes and organic designs, with the goal to evoke ecological concerns. … although the transparency of the images is almost ethereal, it is easy to recognize the organic subject matter, which is the artist’s focus.3

kitchel grass

I had been to Mayme Kratz’s studio three weeks ago.4  Her birds’ nests and grasses laid out as a sunburst in resin are in the show.  (We were not allowed to take photographs of the exhibit so all of these photos are from the respective websites.) Loved Karen Kitchel’s painting of grasses that look like photographs5.

Then there are the animals of the desert.  Kate Breakey does photograms.


Kate drags actual corpses (including a coyote, rabbits, lizards, snakes and various birds) into her studio, lays them on photosensitive paper and then shines light onto them.  The animals then get a proper burial, and the paper gets dipped into developing chemicals which causes these images to appear. 6


Joseph Scheer uses a high resolution scanner to make huge prints of moths7.  (This is just a detail!)

moira-6Moira Geoffrion, fellow member of the Contemporary Art Society, and former head of the University of Arizona Arts department, has 117 oil paintings of birds8 in the show.

Please check out the websites to see more of their work.  And see the show!


It rained throughout the night and just stopped with morning – drips from the roof tapping at the metal stairs, diamonds of raindrops on the end of each acacia twig, on each creosote leaf, sparkling in a splash of sunlight.  All of the mesquite leaves, withered by the freeze two weeks ago, have been washed from the trees and coat the ground in a dusty celadon.

Tire Pressure and the Assault Weapons Ban

Now that I have a car that has a dashboard indicator light to tell me when a tire is five pounds below its recommended pressure (my previous car did not, and I only filled the tires when they looked low), once a month the light comes on.  The air pumps at the gas station (which say that you have to insert four quarters, but if you ask the person in the glass booth, as there are no longer gas station attendants, only cashiers who also sell junk food, he or she will turn on the air for you) are difficult to use, and I often lose more air than I put in.

So I go a mile and a half out of my way to my mechanic and he pumps up my tires, no charge.  (I did have a nail in one tire that had caused a slow leak of air, but that was found when I went to Discount Tires where I had bought them and they removed it, also no charge.)

But I digress.  “My” mechanic, the guy who now owns Erv’s Automotive, is so far right with his (often expressed) opinions that it makes me crazy.  (Think the previous time I was in there he was spouting off about illegal aliens.)  He’s of the pry it from my cold, dead hands school of gun ownership.  Told me that the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School hadn’t happened!  Was just a story trumped up so the Democrats could take their guns away!  (Did you notice that none of the parents were crying?)  This theory of his and I bet he never even heard of the movie, Wag the Dog.

Segue into Gun Control.  You can read Senator Feinstein’s entire assault weapons ban bill on the website.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, introduced a bill that would ban the sale, transfer, manufacture and importation of 100 specialty firearms and certain semiautomatic weapons. The bill would also outlaw the sale, importation and manufacture of ammunition magazines that accept more than 10 rounds.9

My friend in DC, retired Navy, contends that the Second Amendment is being misinterpreted, and that it is the right of the militia to keep and bear arms, not of the general populace.

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Ok, it’s up to all of you now.  I’ve blogged about the necessity for an assault weapons ban.10  I’ve copied the relevant text in that blog to my Senators, McCain and Flake, and to my Congressman, Grijalva.  But all of you must email, call, or write to your senators and congressmen.

As the President said:  “This will not happen unless the American people demand it.”

That means all of us. President Obama has called on all of us to ask our members of Congress to support the president’s recommendations for real change. If they tell you that they don’t support these measures, ask them, “Why not?”  Ask them, “What is more important than keeping our families safe?” 11

And thank Dianne. 12