November 23, 2012 at 3:39 PM

Cultural Bytes for 26 November, 2012

A Square Foot of Humor, Spanish Market, Max Cole and Beyond…

By Tom Maguire

Culture Vulture

Tom Maguire is a musician, arts supporter and a guy who travels the Southwest in a 13’ Scamp trailer, because he couldn’t figure out how the tent poles went together.

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Zane Bennett, Squared
I have often liked theme shows that galleries put together for groups of artist with specific guidelines and the challenges that they pose for the artists involved. On the other hand, I have found some of these group shows so confining that even very creative people find it difficult to bring off a successful response to the challenge.  There have been many winners and losers over the years. The Albuquerque miniature show has always been a great one and I find the latest example of this type gallery event at Zane Bennett to be another winner.

For their annual group show, Zane Bennett has asked its artists to express their concepts for "A Square Foot of Humor" in 12 x 12 inch works.

One would think that the confines of a one-foot square might be too limiting for even a solid group of artists. Add to that the moniker of “humor” and the challenge increases. The Zane Bennett artists have quite stepped up to the challenge and the range of the work is remarkable.

Featuring the works of Roger Atkins, Dunham Aurelius, Stephen Buxton, Susan Davidoff, Engels, Matthew Troy Mullins, Ron Pokrasso, Heidi Pollard, Holly Roberts, Joshua Rose, Rachel Stevens, Donald Woodman, Denise Yaghmourian and Karen Yank, the show opens with an artists’ reception on Friday, November 30 from 5. to 7 p.m. and runs through January 8.

What makes us laugh? Some say that humor is a surprise without a threat or promise. Artist Roger Atkins offers us an unmarked box on the wall to open. Inside we read a multitude of opening lines to some of the artist's favorite jokes. If we are open to a laugh, we no doubt will try to finish the joke!

This is just one of the wonderfully unique responses to this show’s concept. The range of work from this extraordinary stable of gallery artists is packed with inch upon inch of skill, sensibility and, yes, humor.

You are invited to enjoy the therapeutic effects of laughter for yourself. Go see ZBCA's version of foolery in “A Square Foot of Humor.”

Winter Spanish Market
The 24th Annual Winter Spanish Market, one of Santa Fe's favorite seasonal events, comes to the Community Convention Center on Saturday and Sunday, December 1 and 2, with Saturday hours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday hours from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Winter Spanish Market is a rousing kickoff to the December holidays as more than 100 artists display their work for sale while live music is performed throughout the day and food by Walter Burke Catering is available. Market admission is free.

“Beyond” at Charlotte Jackson
An exhibition of new paintings by Max Cole, “Beyond,” will open at Charlotte Jackson Fine Art November 30 and extend through December 30, with an opening reception with the artist to be held on Friday, November 30 from 5  to 7 p.m.

Beyond technique. Beyond time. Beyond color. Beyond geometry, form and paint. Beyond what the eyes that see, the ears that hear, the hands that place brush onto canvas there is something which makes art. An energy, an essence, that goes beyond the checklist of skills and accomplishments of the artist, but that undeniably exists in the best works of art. This is where Max Cole resides.

There is room for the viewer to exist inside one of these paintings. It is not only that the heavy black horizontal lines with their egg-shell smooth surfaces are laced together across the painting by vertical—-hundreds of hair's breadth lines that lift and open up each piece like breathing opens up the ribcage. It is not just the subtle scale of their tonality, ranging only through blacks, grays, white, and browns which gives them this sense of interspace.

Volunteer at the Film Festival
Want to help the Film Festival celebrate its 13th season? Become a volunteer.

The 2012 Santa Fe Film Festival is right around the corner, running Thursday, December 6 through Sunday, December 9.  And they can use your help.

This year's program is extraordinary: with internationally acclaimed films, hidden gems and a spotlight on our homegrown New Mexico filmmakers. By becoming a Film Festival volunteer you can get in on the excitement.

By volunteering you can earn screening tickets, meet great people, be a part of the Santa Fe Film Festival community, attend the post-festival free volunteer thank-you screening of a festival title and earn raffle tickets for prizes including a Blu-Ray player, universal remote, restaurant certificates and more.

Sign up by email - officemanager@santafefilmfestival.com.

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