10 Questions to the Artist

Do you know who Frank Gehry is? Ken does.

Ken Foster is our featured artist for the month of November.  I have enjoyed seeing his studio, work, and getting to know him a little.  Ken is a good artist.  He told me that after graduating from college in New York, he decided to apply to various MFA programs.  He was accepted into Cranbrook Academy of Art. Ken said that when he arrived to attend class, he couldn't believe that he was attending this fine art school.  However, when you look at Ken's range of artwork, you know why he was accepted into their program.  Ken taught ceramics at Muskegon Community College for most of his career in academia.  Since retiring, he has been working with found objects and turning them into art.  His sense of aesthetics is very pleasing.  I could see his wall hangings in many different rooms throughout a home or office. Here are Ken's answers to my questions: What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally?  A beautiful day; walk on the beach; bike or kayak ride; a well designed object; a good piece of music or book; a good glass of wine or beer. Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Making art out of found materials often considered junk. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?  Architecture What profession would you not like to do? Mathematics  Who are your favorite artists? Diebenkorn, Noguchi, and Frank Gehry What is your favorite tool used to create your work? My hands What is your favorite word?  Design What is your least favorite word?  No Who is your favorite musician?  Bobby McFerrin and Wynton Marsalis How much formal education have you received? Related to your craft. Masters of Fine Arts from Cranbrook  Ken's work, The Woven and Map Series, will be in the gallery until the end of November.      


10 Questions to the Artist – Camille Johnson

Our August exhibit is a show different from anything in the past at C2C Gallery.    This art show by Camille Johnson will be Time Based Visual Art.  To be honest, I am not sure what we will be seeing until the show is hung and ready for viewing.  It will be both a large drawing and a video created by Camille.   The backdrop for a play written and produced by Camille Johnson Camille spent her time in both Vermont and Michigan growing up.  Currently, she is in New York City attending Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts.  Throughout her life, she has always had many projects going at the same time. At a young age, she wrote several articles that were published in the Burlington Free Press, wrote music for the school choir, staged an entire play more than once, and created artwork in many mediums.  One of the things that I love about Camille is that she is never bored.  There were very few times she said "I'm bored.  What can I do?"  She always had an idea and ran with it. Here are Camille's answers to our Ten Questions to the Artist:   1.  What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? The Subway. 2.  Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? At the moment my work is heavily influenced by my circumstances. I find that I am in a really unique context—with regard to place in the world and place in a longitudinal consideration of my life/age. I am eighteen and I live on East 93rd St. in Manhattan and it’s incredible how much those two contexts penetrate each other. I am honored by the opportunity around me to be taken by this city’s highest highs and lowest lows and every middle of the night subway ride in between. My work is a process of childhood recovery. Picasso had it right when he said, “Every child is an artist. The hard part is how to remain that artist when you grow up.” I am working on nurturing my childhood artist and finding its place in this big grown up city world. 3.  What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I would like to be an aerial silk performer in a traveling burlesque carnival troupe that is accompanied by a Balkan brass band. 4.  What profession would you not like to do? I would not like to do wealth management for Monsanto. 5.  Who are your favorite artists? Egon Schiele, Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith, Eiko Otaike, Susan Rethorst, Bread and Puppet Theater, Marlene Dumas, Susan Sontag, Basil Twist, Diane Arbus, Swoon, Colson Whitehead. 6.  What is your favorite tool used to create your work? I work in almost every medium. I like to work in all of them at once. For this reason, time has become an element of my pieces. This month you will see one example of my time based visual art—merging puppetry, film, charcoal, and movement. 7.  What is your favorite word? I do not have a favorite word. 8.  What is your least favorite word? realistic 9.  Who is your favorite musician? Well, today, it was Lou Reed on the album, "Songs for Drella". 10.  How much formal education have you received? I have spent one year of college at the New School (Eugene Lang) in New York City.   I am currently on a year’s leave of absence. A collage by Camille Johnson Camille's exhibit will be on display through August.  It will be a large drawing with a video displayed onto the drawing.  Stop in.


Local Artist loves anything with a Latin Rhthm

Barbara Fugazzotto was originally thinking about something in science.  She grew up in upstate New York, moved several times, ending up in Grand Haven due to her husband's job in the Grand Haven school system.  He came home saying that they needed an art teacher.  Barb changed clothes and convinced the superintendent of schools that she could indeed teach art to junior high aged children.  The next day, she started.  Barb loved being a teacher showing students original ways that they could show their creativity.  I like to ask each of our visiting artists the same questions to learn a bit more about them.     Recently, I interviewed Barbara about her likes and dislikes.  Here are her responses to our "10 Questions to the Artist": What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally?  Creatively- standing in front of my shelves of fabric. Which shall I choose to begin?               Spiritually- standing at the edge of the ocean,                       The rhythm of the waves                       The details of the foam on the sand                       The enormity of the expanse                       The unifying nature of the oceans connecting all parts of the world.                                         Emotionally- friends and family  who embraced and accept the emotion I need                       to express Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? The layering of geological history as seen in the strata of a rock wall. The layering of color, texture and patina as seen in ancient ruins on weathered objects. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?  I could have been a dancer.  What profession would you not like to do? Sports- too competitive and I like to make stuff.    Who are your favorite artists? My aunt who was an art teacher had Van Gogh prints in her house. At an early age I stared at them fascinated by the colors, textures and loosely representative style. And Matisse- Pattern on pattern. Need I say more? What is your favorite tool used to create your work? Sewing machine and serger. What is your favorite word? “What if…?”  What is your least favorite word? “Procrastinator” Who is your favorite musician? Anything with a Latin rhythm.  How much formal education have you received? Related to your craft. Bachelors degree and many credit and non credit classes and workshops. I love being a student learning something new.    Fugazzotto's Fabric mask We love having Barb's tactile work.  Her decorative masks and fans are lovely.  She has creative small bags for women that have very thoughtful pockets on the inside and out.  We have several vests and jackets that she has made in several different sizes and styles.  Her materials have been gathered throughout her travels all over the world.  Stop in to consider one of her pieces for you or your home, or a gift.  Barb uses Art in her daily life. Fandangle by Barbara Fugazzotto


10 Questions to the Artist – Mikey McGhee

Mikey McGhee is our June 2014 artist.  She is a ceramic artist originally from Alaska, currently residing in West Michigan.  I was talking with Mikey as we set up her show today.  I learned that when she started making these teapots, she had a 30% success rate.  Now, 50%.  Can you imagine spending time creating something, whether it was an object or work project with only a 30% success rate?  You have to be thick skinned in so many ways to survive as an artist. Mikey McGhee's Teapot Mikey told me how she has to build each teapot on a kiln shelf.  As she builds/connecting the two main bodies with coils, Mikey builds clay supports.  After the bisque firing, she needs to be able to chisel/knock away the support form.  When you see her teapots, think about building the forms around it, and then firing them to 1800 degrees.  Clay shrinks as it is fired.  Imagine the torquing that takes place inside the kiln. Mikey answers our "Ten Questions to the Artist" so that we can get to know her, just a little.     1. What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? Creatively I get a charge from viewing art either in person or in a book. Listening to artist describe their work and express their passion excites me most. 2. Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Originally,  I was determined to create my teapots because an instructor said they cant be done. Now, I continue to build them to see how far I can push the boundaries successfully. With that, I lose more than achieve which makes the achievements more rewarding. 3. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Unanswered. 4. What profession would you not like to do? Unanswered. 5. Who are your favorite artists? Picasso reminds me that anyone can be an artist, even if you don't think so. If he can sketch a masterpiece in 30 seconds, I can take one a week and draw one too. 6. What is your favorite tool used to create your work? If I didn't have the wheel I dont know if I would of pursued art. It is my starting point and most of my creativity comes out during throwing. 7. What is your favorite word? My Family is why I'm following this path. Their support has nurtured my art. Without them, I would of gone a completely different direction. 8. What is your least favorite word? 'I can't' is probably the hardest words for me to hear. If I looked at something and thought, "I can't" life would be impossible. When someone tells me "I can't" I usually smile and say something like, "sure you can" but I really want to shake sense into them. 9. Who is your favorite musician? Unanswered. 10. How much formal education have you received? I had a year of ceramics in a community college. Within that time, I sold several pieces and was accepted into a gallery. I then took a year of independant study and taught a ceramic instructor how to throw on the wheel so he could teach his students not only amazing hand building techniques but also the basics of wheel throwing.   Thank you, Mikey, for answering our questions.  Stop in to the gallery to see her exhibit.  Mikey will be in the gallery, Friday night, 6-8pm.  Or, if you don't live in West Michigan, check out our virtual exhibit.  We will ship.    


Our Local Jeweler has a national presence

One of the jewelers at C2C Gallery has built a lucrative business in Grand Haven while being an involved mom of two young boys.   Building national credibility wasn't even on Julie Sanford's agenda when she began as a craftsperson.  She always wanted to be an artist who sold at art fairs.    Julie continues to sell at the craft fairs.  However, her love is creating new work, having a customer discover and appreciate her designs, and encouraging enthusiastic students.    Early in her career, she realized that becoming established as an expert would help grow her craft business.  Julie began teaching at national shows like the "Bead & Button Show and Bead Fest."   By being an instructor at these shows, you build a bigger collector base because students like to purchase the work of artists that they learned from. Fordite Bracelet by Julie Sanford Recently, I interviewed Julie about her likes and dislikes.  Here are her responses to our "10 Questions to the Artist": What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? Sunny warm days have really been charging me up lately! I am happiest when people engage and find some kind of connection with my work and share their thoughts and stories about what it means to them. Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? I love finding and working with unique gemstones, especially Michigan material like Fordite, Leland Blue and Petoskey Stone.  I like to enhance the dynamic of the materials I’m using, while creating small wearable compositions in jewelry.    The materials tend to influence my work. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I think it would fun to fly an airplane.  What profession would you not like to do? Surgeon Who are your favorite artists? Alexander Calder, Renee Lalique.  Contemporary- Claudio Pino, James Miller  What is your favorite tool used to create your work? This is like asking an artist what their favorite color is!  My favorites depend on what I am working on.  Lately it’s my gold-smithing hammer, grandpa’s old ball peen hammer, a giant old anvil, my torches, flex-shaft and the lapidary machine. What is your favorite word? Sunshine  What is your least favorite word? Hate  Who is your favorite musician? Too many to list a favorite.  How much formal education have you received? Related to your craft. I have a BA in Art Education from WMU and have taken classes at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts,  Kendall, The Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in San Francisco and various technique workshops at conferences, trade schools and private studios. We love to have Julie's jewelry in the gallery.  She always creates unique pendants, bracelets, and earrings.   Julie uses interesting stones like Jasper, Fordite, and Leland Blue in her work.  One of the things that many people don't realize is that she can create custom pieces for you or someone that you love.  I am always amazed at her creativity.  It is hard to restrain myself from purchasing a new piece when I visit her studio.  


Ten Questions to the Artist – O’Hearn and Fielding Glass

Tomorrow, we open a new exhibit, "Colour My World"  displaying kiln formed glass by Cynthia Fielding and Carolyn O'Hearn.  These two women have been in business together for three years.  They create glass panels, tile work, bowls, coasters, wall hangings, and more.  This exhibit will be up through the end of April.  The work is for sale.  Meet both artists on April 4 and discuss their work.    I interviewed both Carolyn and Cindy recently.  Here are their answers to our Ten Questions to the Artist: Cynthia Fielding's Answers: 1.  What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally?  Textiles, small objects, Light 2.  Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work?  Nature 3.  What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?  Inventor 4.  What profession would you not like to do?  Soldier 5.  Who are your favorite artists? Klimt and Mucha 6.  What is your favorite tool used to create your work? Glass cutter 7.  What is your favorite word?  dessert 8.  What is your least favorite word? No  9.  Who is your favorite musician?  Annie Lennox 10.   How much formal education have you received?  Related to your craft.  10 years   Carolyn O'Hearn's Answers: 1.  What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally?  Space, Light, Volume 2.  Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Glass as a medium 3.  What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?  Architect 4.  What profession would you not like to do?  Telemarketer 5.  Who are your favorite artists?  Van Gogh, Charles Mackintosh 6.  What is your favorite tool used to create your work?  The Kiln 7.  What is your favorite word?  Bamboozle 8.  What is your least favorite word?  Can’t 9.  Who is your favorite musician? Freddie Mercury 10.   How much formal education have you received?  Related to your craft.  Lamentably little      


10 Questions with Christi Dreese

Today, I am interviewing Christi Dreese.  I love learning a bit more about our artists.  Christi is a painter at C2C.  She is known for her vivid colored lakeshore landscapes.   Christi will create custom paintings for your home or office.  You can find her in the galleries most Wednesdays. Christi Dreese's answers to our 10 questions: What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? Christi:  "Well, I'm not really sure.  I just have to be in the mood and sometimes I just need to start.  Starting is sometimes the hardest part." Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Christi:  "I love the lakeshore and summer months on my boat.  Therefore, I paint a lot of beach scenes.  My abstract work is more of a therapeutic process." What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?   Christi:  "Web Design." What profession would you not like to do?  Christi:  "Accounting!" Who are your favorite artists?  Christi:  "Eva Carter (abstract artist and no she is not a former relative!) I love many of the impressionistic masters." What is your favorite tool used to create your work?  Christi:  "I usually use my paint brushes but sometimes I do smear the paint with my hands for the abstract paintings.  A little tid bit.  I use the pointed end of my brush to make the gouges in my paintings." What is your favorite word? Christi:  "Probably not appropriate."  :) What is your least favorite word?  Christi:  "Impossible or perfect." Who is your favorite musician?  Christi:  "Sting." How much formal education have you received?  Related to your craft. Christi: "I graduated from Aquinas college with a Bachelors in Art and a major in Business Administration."   Thank you, Christi, for taking the time to answer my questions.  It is nice to know you a little bit better.


10 Questions to the Artist

Bob Walma This week I talked with Bob Walma, one of our photographers in the gallery, and asked him our ten questions.  Bob is one of the TippleAid Crew members.  He is the driving energy behind the restoration of Grand Haven's Coal Tipple.  I am going to have to check out some of his favorite musicians.  He told me that he had too many favorite artists to list, which led him to name locals. (click on the image to watch Bob's video) Bob’s answers to our 10 questions: What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? Bob:  "I get a real buzz, like a natural-high, from having a new creative idea.  Whether it’s a solo-idea, or a collaboration with others, there is an emotional and creative “project energy” that comes from the combination of having an idea and then trying to make it happen.  Some ideas never advance beyond my writing them down in a notebook, and some ideas don’t turn out as well as I’d hoped for, but each of them is fun and engrossing to me “in the moment”. Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Bob:  "Not in any overt or pervasive way.  My thoughts and motivations are different from project-to-project, with each one incorporating greater or lesser amounts of “personal artistic expression”.  When I work for a client, my main concern is to produce something that suits their needs or makes them happy - more “craftsman for hire” than “artist”.  Working with video allows me to incorporate more personal elements into my work, even when they’re only short little “doodles” done for a laugh.  The biggest ongoing influence on my work is simply a desire to keep learning, and hopefully, keep getting better..." What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?   Bob:  "I think I would enjoy almost any other profession in the creative arts - be it writer, painter, filmmaker, musician, sculptor, etc." What profession would you not like to do?  Bob:  "I think I would enjoy almost any other profession in the creative arts - be it writer, painter, filmmaker, musician, sculptor, etc." Who are your favorite artists?  Bob:  "Far too many to mention - I could give separate lists for novelists, songwriters, photographers, painters, film directors, etc, so instead I’ll mention local artists who are not only very talented, but are also people I’m fortunate enough to count as friends and sometime-collaborators:  Lee S. Brown, Julie Sanford, Christi Dreese and Cyndi Casemier.  Getting to watch talented artists create their own work is a major perk to what I do..." What is your favorite tool used to create your work?  Bob:  "My camera and my computer have become almost equally important to my work.  Whether I’m working on photographs or videos, everything starts with the camera, but nothing is complete until it’s been through some level of editing or processing (from very simple to very complex) on the computer." What is your favorite word? Bob:  "Brainstorm". What is your least favorite word?  Bob:  "Goodbye." Who is your favorite musician?  Bob:  "John Lennon - but more currently, I really like Rob Thomas, Ingrid Michaelson, Of Monsters & Men, Florence & The Machine (followed closely by about 50 others - lol)." How much formal education have you received?  Related to your craft. Bob:  "None.  I was a ‘serious amateur’ for many years before doing anything professional, and I still regularly read & study things to expand my knowledge and skill-set; not to mention that I take an average of about 1,000 pictures every month, which is a lot of ‘practice’ whether I’m deliberately seeking it out or not.  I’ve also found YouTube to be an invaluable resource for training and tutorial videos on nearly any topic you might be interested in learning." I would like to thank Bob for this interview.  I appreciate his time and thoughts.  I hope you enjoy getting to know him a little better.    For more information about the Tipple Art Competition, go to:  c2cgallery.com orfacebook.com/c2cgallery


10 Questions with Lee S Brown

I thought it would be interesting to ask the same 10 questions to each of our C2C artists, whether retail or featured.  Since we are focusing on Grand Haven's Coal Tipple in November, I thought I would start with the Tipple Aid Crew.  Lee S Brown is one of the crew members.  They have been having a lot of fun organizing events and videos.   Lee's answers to our 10 questions: What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? Lee: “Part of my creative process is a constant bombardment with images, textures, and materials from diverse sources. What turns me on creatively is when all these elements coalesce into an idea for a piece and when ideas flow from one to the next as work is completed.” Do you have an influence or theme that guides your work? Lee:  ”I’m interested in work from around the world, the more connected the work is to the earth the more likely to grab my attention. Color, texture, symbols, ritual objects, patterning, natural phenomena, etc.” What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?   Lee:  ”Materials development.” What profession would you not like to do?  Lee:  ”Office Manager.” Who are your favorite artists?  Lee:  ”My Favorites at this point are  Constantin Brancusi, Louise Nevelson and Isamu Noguchi.” What is your favorite tool used to create your work?  Lee:  ”Lately I have been restoring some old hand planes, they are very satisfying and versatile when sharp and working well.” What is your favorite word? Lee:  ”Possible.” What is your least favorite word?  Lee:  ”Limit.” Who is your favorite musician?  Lee:  ”Bob Dylan.” How much formal education have you received?  Related to your craft. Lee:  ”Graduated Kendall School of Design with an Illustration major Advertising minor.” I would like to thank Lee for this interview.  I appreciate his time and thoughts.  I hope you enjoy getting to know him a little better.    For more information about the Tipple Art Competition, go to:  c2cgallery.com orfacebook.com/c2cgallery


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2013CyndiBlog

Handmade Art & Gifts

104 Washington Street
Grand Haven, MI 49417
Cyndi Casemier, Owner
616-935-7337

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