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Art From Venezuela – Dina Atencio

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    Nocturna (Nocturnal), 2017

    Artist Dina Atencio

    Mixed Media on Canvas

    71 x 57 inches

‘Nocturna’  is definitely my favorite painting of all of the artwork from Venezuela. It may not be what the artist intended, but to me the lady in the painting looks like the quintessential Latin-American doña. Refined, dramatic, and a bit mysterious.

I find myself getting drawn to her eyes and her face, in fact so much so that I have completely missed another part of the painting! It wasn’t until today, when a visitor at the gallery  pointed out the landscape below her face, that I actually saw it. But, there it was. The small lake, surrounded by trees, that looks like the neckline on her clothing. The night sky, with a hint of red from the setting sun, that makes up the colors on her neck. And it makes me like the painting even more!

Atencio’s’s work expresses serenity and romanticism through a figurative style, hinting of vivid temperaments and sensitivity. Her themes are mostly female with faces that represent sensuality and mystery, as well as a touch of old emulated in their outfits from the early 20th century. See her busy creating at:

“Bringing Art to Life” – Life is Exciting

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Last, but not least: ‘Life is Exciting’ by Marie Renfro.
I am always sad when an exhibit ends, so what better way to end this blog series than with a beautiful and uplifting piece by my favorite artist! Together the energizing red colors and the title “Life is Exciting’ make it impossible to be anything but happy and excited. I started the blog series with Pamela Van Laanen’s ‘Inspiration’, and I am ending it with ‘Life is Exciting’. Both beautiful artists, inside and out, creating artwork that brings out abundances of happy energy. Artwork that I know I will love and cherish for the rest of my life.

I am so privileged to have been part of the ‘Bringing Art to Life’ exhibit, and so excited about being able to get to know all these wonderful artists! Life is indeed exciting!!

“Bringing Art to Life” – San Diego

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San Diego, CA, by Lizzy Hicks.
Lizzy blends abstraction and asymmetry in her landscape photomontages. I particularly like this one; mainly because the reflection appears as a seamless continuation of the original image creating an abstract (even though it isn’t) landscape. The altered perception that simplified the landscape into form, line and color makes you look twice even if you recognize the original depiction!

“Bringing Art to Life” – Faith

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“Faith” by Cherie Fruehan.
I have loved this painting since I first saw it as part of Cherie’s ‘Faces’ exhibit.
I love the simple focus on the face, no hair or anything else to divert your focus away. The unfinished birch wood helps draw your attention towards the face as well. The bold color of her lipstick and the strikingly blue eyes makes this painting mesmerizing. The faith shines through in her eyes and you feel like you are getting a glimpse of her soul as you gaze into them.

“Bringing Art to Life” – Jasmine

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“Jasmine Dream” by David (Buzz) Baldwin.
You can almost smell the sweet scent of jasmine! As an aspiring gardener with less than green thumbs I can’t help but being drawn to this painting. It is one of Buzz’s smaller works, but the simple beauty of the jasmine flower and the vivid colors in the background makes this my favorite Buzz Baldwin painting!! It is definitely capturing the beauty of nature with all its textures and colors.

“Bringing Art to Life” – Alaska

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“Alaska” by Laura Helms.
I love how the figure of the boy in the foreground gives way to the unrefined shape and larger brush strokes of the rock formation next to him. This is my favorite of Laura’s paintings because of the way it captures the wonder and happiness in the boy that is gazing out over the water, and the way she explore the concepts of peace and meditation through the boy and throughout the landscape that is surrounding him.

“Bringing Art to Life” – Horses!

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‘Peruvian Paso’ by Helen Bailey.
Helen’s drawings are amazingly lifelike, and the details will just blow you away. The drawing of the Peruvian Paso is my favorite because it is such a great example of Helen’s work. The details of the reigns are exquisite, and the personality, strength and gentleness of the breed really shines through in this drawing!

History and horse breed lesson:
The Peruvian Paso horse is native to Peru. Because of its isolation for almost 500 years, the Peruvian Paso horse has evolved as one of the purest breeds in the world. It is a direct descendant of the Spanish horses brought to America by Christopher Columbus and the Conquistadors.
With its thick mane and forelock; and small, tipped ears, the beauty and grace of the Peruvian is legendary. The Peruvian Paso is known as the smoothest horse in the world due to its smooth ride and amiable temperament. The gait of the Peruvian Horse is passed 100% to its offspring, and they often look as if they are on parade.

“Bringing Art to Life” – Memories

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Today I will share my favorite Bill Carter photograph and my favorite Judith Dunbar painting. Totally different artists and totally different media, but the one thing that these two pieces have in common is that they are bringing back fond memories from my youth.

Bill Carter photographed “Off the Beaten Path” in Hawaii.
Even though it is a slightly different landscape (and completely different continent!), the old dirt path and the makeshift fence reminds me of the countless hikes my parents took me and my brother on when we were little kids. The peace and tranquility when we were off the beaten path, miles away from other people, were priceless and I am grateful to Bill for bringing these fond memories back!

“Ball Gown” by Judith Dunbar.
When I was young(er) I loved dressing up, and there is no denying the feeling of glamour a beautiful ball gown invokes in a young woman! Although I have never had a ball gown quite as glamorous as the one depicted in Judy’s painting, it still reminds me of the sleek evening gown that my mom made for me for my end-of-college dance. My mom was amazing and could make anything she set her mind to, and I felt like a million bucks that night!

“Bringing Art to Life” – Inspiration

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I decided that I wanted to share my favorite piece from this exhibit with you, but then I realized that it was impossible to pick just one – so, I decided to share my favorite piece of each artist instead! That I can do 🙂

This is ‘Inspiration’ by Pamela Van Laanen. It is my absolute favorite piece of Pam’s at the ‘Bringing Art to Life’ exhibit.

I have been a big admirer of Pam’s work for years, and love how the blue color pops in this painting. Plus, the name itself, ‘Inspiration’, it just makes you happy! Her  paintings are vibrant and energizing, yet relaxing and peaceful.

Somebody else probably has another favorite, maybe even just one out of the 34!