Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The of end of one year...the beginning of another...what an exciting time this is...here is a review of the last year (Christmas card) we sent out...

Sunday, October 19, 2014


An article I recently wrote for The Bay Window...

Art Prize, 2014 by most standards was a huge success. The streets and stores were teeming with the curious and the art lovers on the final weekend of the event. From grandpas to stroller riding infants, everyone was on the hunt for art. We all know and by most counts have seen the pictures of the winners. Just in case you have not, check them out at the following website; http://www.artprize.org/blog/2014-artprize-awards-announcement

Many other works of art generated ideas about the world around us…a few are shared here.

The Last Supper in the D.P.R.K. is artist Jason Roger’s view of the North Korean dynasty. The
major players in the regime are over-laid in a setting similar to Leonardo daVinci’s Last Supper with Jesus and the Apostles.  His explanation and comparison is thought provoking. He says, “I seek to utilize artistic expression as a means of providing a cautionary visual narrative on the risks of authoritative influence.”

We All Live in Gaza by Maurice Jacobsen invades our space with photographs, sounds and videos of the
residents of Gaza. For a brief moment or two we can experience a small bit of what life would be like to live
under siege for the past six years.

Chelsea Younkman a winner from last year, displayed Job Fair 2, larger than life-size charcoal drawings on paper. Showing corporate business people in a wide range of emotional distress speaks to the vulnerability in all of us…regardless of where we work or what we do.

A bit of controversy surrounded ArtPrize 2014 when an exhibiting artist indicated he would not accept prize money if he won but would instead donate it to the LGBD Fund. Steve Lambert, an exhibiting artist, protests the DeVos family influence in ArtPrize and their personally held beliefs. Here’s an excerpt from his letter pledging to take a stand against the moneyed influence of ArtPrize.

Last week I learned I was a jury pick for ArtPrize in Grand Rapids. Shortly after I found out I was on the short list for the public vote as well. At that point I had a shot at the $200,000 public vote prize, the $200,000 juried prize, and a 1 in 4 chance of winning a $20,000 jury prize for my category. It’s a lot of money.

I didn’t enter ArtPrize with the hope of winning. I was curated into a show during ArtPrize. I had heard a bit about the contest and decided to give it a chance and have the piece reach an audience it may not otherwise. I was certain I had no shot at winning. I liked that my piece was understood and appreciated by critics and the public alike.

ArtPrize is hard to explain. It’s a project of Rick DeVos, who comes from a very wealthy family. How did they make that money? Founding Amway – Multi-Level Marketing, which is a polite term for a pyramid scheme. They’re married into the family behind Blackwater, the private military outfit. They’re against unions and advocate for school voucher programs. They’ve been major donors to Focus on the Family, Acton Institute, Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute, and Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich’s campaigns. You may have read that article I sent last week, or about their union busting and plan to defund the Left in Mother Jones. (I encourage you to read them. It made my choice much easier.)

What bothers me the most is the DeVos family has, for generations, been on the wrong side of the fight for civil rights for LGBT people. And they back their opinions with millions in political money against civil rights. It’s a long story, but the end is: they haven’t changed.”

In an open letter response to Mr. Lambert, the Executive Director of ArtPrize, Christian Gaines replies at the following site, http://www.artprize.org/blog/social-equity-and-inclusion.

In his letter, Christian supports ArtPrize and founders in saying, “To ensure the long-term growth of this programming, the ArtPrize board of directors, chaired by Rick DeVos, unanimously passed a resolution in May of this year which specifically mandates programming that takes action for equality and acceptance of the LGBT community, as well as all underrepresented populations.”

ArtPrize 2014 offered something for everyone. If you didn’t make it this year, you should certainly plan on attending it in 2015.

Regardless of your political, social or cultural backgrounds and beliefs, as Pablo Picasso once said, “Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.” 

Job Fair 2 by Chelsea Younkman

The Last Supper in the D.P.R.K. by Jason Roger

Monday, July 7, 2014

Celebrating Independence Day...

Independence Day_2014 by Nancy Sandoval Slater

Beautiful foggy morning on a small Hesperia, Michigan lake, this guy is feeling the joy of independence. On his way out to fish he tells me, (and I don't think this is an original quote although certainly heartfelt!)

"Any day fishing is a better day than working!"

World Economic Forum initiative launches Saigon-themed graphic design contest

World Economic Forum initiative launches Saigon-themed graphic design contest

Wow...wish I had pics of Ho Chi Min City!

Road trip 2021

 A picture review of 2021 Sister Trip. As baby of the family, I’ve committed to visiting my three older sisters as often as possible, before...