When Mary Findysz, owner of ArtsEye and Photographic Works, described how she replicates original paintings (using the d'Vinci Hi-Fi JET Fine Art Printing System), I was reminded of the Pepsi Challenge.
"We print (a copy of the original) on canvas and watercolor papers, and all kinds of different surfaces, so that we can emulate the artist's work," Findysz said. "In a lot of cases, the artist has a hard time telling the difference between the original and reproduction."
Yes, according to Findysz, you can have your cake (or painting) and eat it (for a reduced price), too.
"With our print system, an expensive painting that has a select market can become accessible to others," Findysz said.
That's especially true with ArtsEye's current exhibition, featuring works by Shana M. Zimmerman.
"We have this really close collaboration with Zimmerman," Findysz said. "Our goal is to reproduce her color palette and emotion in her paintings."
Zimmerman's personalized color palette is a stylistic element unique to her paintings. This is evident in works like "Indigo Dancer V," a dramatic profile of a ballerina whose radiant indigo skirt contrasts with an ebony background.
With her vibrant use of color and long brush strokes, Zimmerman's favorite subjects--dancers, musicians (including numerous local luminaries) and animals--appear to move across the canvas.
"She painted a series of a musician in town, the late Chris Gaffney," Findysz said. "Just in her paintings, she captures a sense of who he is. And then when you listen to his music, you get the whole feeling of him as a musician."
Admission to All Together Now is free. --M.N.
Sharon Holnback is Oracle's multitasking Wonder Woman: She owns a bed and breakfast, is a mixed-media artist, hosts an art exhibition every two months, encourages gingerbread-house-making and recently agreed to host Oracle's farmers' market every Saturday.
"My mission, in addition to the bed and breakfast, is art-related activities," Holnback said. "What I'm working on now is a glass building, an apothecary of sorts."
For now, that glass structure is a work in progress--and one of the centerpieces of Triangle L. Ranch's newest Winter Exhibition. Holnback's partially completed work will sit beside other mixed-media pieces such as Mykl Wells' massive, 8-foot-tall "Chimera."
If you've learned Greek mythology, you know that Homer's Iliad depicted the Chimera as a 3-in-1 beast, with a lion's head, a goat's body and the tail of a snake or a dragon. Although Wells doesn't re-create Homer's Chimera, his also features a tripartite creature (according to Holnback, a hybrid cat/human).
"His piece, the 'Chimera,' was made from salvaged cardboard," Holnback said. "He cuts it and glues it together."
In addition to the Winter Exhibition, Holnback is hosting Edible Architecture, a display of Oracle's tastiest gingerbread houses, on a self-guided tour that begins at the Triangle L Ranch, progresses to the Oracle Historical Society and culminates at Oracle State Park.
But unlike Hansel and Gretel, Holnback asks the gingerbread-house innovators to refrain from having their creations immediately eaten--and to allow the houses to be raffled off instead.
"The raffle tickets are going to benefit the Historical Society, the park and the Rancho Linda Vista summer-arts program for kids," Holnback said.
Both events are free and open to the public. --M.N.
Now that it's mid-December, the rush to get your holiday shopping done and/or your Christmas lights on your roof (to avoid looking like the deadbeat neighbor on the block) has begun. Ah, the holidays.
But before you tack those green strings of bulbs on to the gutters, why not stop by downtown and see a more creative use of lights?
The Downtown Parade of Lights, in its 14th year, will take to the streets downtown on Saturday, said Brandi Haga, administrative coordinator for the Downtown Tucson Partnership.
"It's really just about getting families and the community into downtown," Haga said. "It's celebrating the holidays and getting people to come out and see what downtown really has to offer."
Entries in the parade are always a grab bag of different organizations and people.
"There are a lot of nonprofits this year, which is really exciting," Haga said. "There are a lot of new entries that I've never seen before."
Entries in the parade range from the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts to marching bands to people and their dogs.
All parade participants have to incorporate lights, so expect to see the Tucson Fire Department's engines decked out in Christmas flair.
The festivities begin at Armory Park before the parade begins at 6 p.m. This year's parade route is slightly different: The parade will start at Stone Avenue and 17th Street and will proceed north on Stone to Pennington Street, where it will turn toward Sixth Avenue and then snake down to Armory Park, taking detours down Congress Street and Broadway Boulevard.
"It's one of those feel-good events," Haga said. "The whole community really comes together, and it's just fun." --C.C.
Despite not officially opening until the spring, the Mercado San Agustín--a new downtown marketplace that will house 18 local businesses--will still be celebrating the holidays.
The Mercado's holiday bazaar will open on Friday, with two weeks of shopping, food and entertainment under a large canvas tent near the Mercado's future home.
"This is an annual event we'll do every year with the holidays in mind," said Kira Dixon-Weinstein, executive director of the Mercado San Agustín. "Lots of people come from different places, and they say, 'Oh we have this where I'm from, and it's so wonderful.' ... It's a tradition to have a holiday market around Christmas time."
Vendors will offer Mexican food, Argentinean eats, wine, beer and holiday treats, while helping you get your Christmas list taken care of by supporting Tucson's small businesses.
Nightly entertainment will feature mariachi bands, jazz quartets, flamenco singing, Big Band music, folk groups and more.
The bazaar will also mark several important dates during the holiday season. The first weekend of the bazaar will celebrate La Virgen de Guadalupe, whose feast day is Dec. 12. The bazaar will have a procession, and a shrine to La Virgen will be blessed by Catholic Bishop Gerald Kicanas, Dixon-Weinstein said.
Santa Claus will arrive on Monday, Dec. 15, and a tree-lighting ceremony will be held with Mayor Bob Walkup and City Councilmember Regina Romero. A posadas procession will take place on Thursday, Dec. 18, and local bands will rock out on Saturday, Dec. 20.
"We hope to really get the word out so people know this is the first year," Dixon-Weinstein said. "We definitely hope it will grow each year." --C.C.