Whether it’s sunny or stormy or in-between, come to Cannon Beach to celebrate the arts and the arrival of autumn at the Stormy Weather Arts Festival, Nov. 2 to 4. This 25th anniversary celebration event features music, art, demonstrations and receptions all over town. The festival is an annual treat that Cannon Beach residents and travelers alike look forward to. Several favorite artists bring their newest work to showcase at the event, spending time talking to patrons and showing them how they work.
Troy Crowe, chairman of the SWAF committee, says new things are coming to the party this year, starting with the reinvention of Quick Draw, the kickoff event Friday night. Quick Draw will still be held in the Surfsand Resort ballroom, a delicious dinner will be served and eight artists will still begin with an empty palette or an as-yet-untouched object to be sculpted. But after that there are many noticeable improvements.
Seating will be at tables rather than theater-style: a much cozier setup that is conducive to conversation and a dinner party atmosphere. The artists, unlike in years past, will not have to finish their work of art in the given hour; rather, they will demonstrate techniques and give patrons an idea of where the art is going. Each artist will present other finished works for auction that night, and the Quick Draw piece will be finished and for sale at the artist’s sponsoring gallery during the weekend.
Crowe credits Jeffrey Hull, the Gallery Group and the Surfsand Resort, among others, for great ideas, collaboration and cooperation in bringing new concepts to Quick Draw. “Starting with a complete marketing overhaul and adding social networking, we have put the word out about all the changes to the event,” Crowe said. “Adding auction items other than art, such as vacation packages from the Benson and Heathman Hotels in Portland, will add interest so that patrons will enjoy a lively, well-planned evening. Surfsand Resort has been very cooperative about room arrangement, food and beverages, and The Gallery Group has brought new ideas to the event.”
Doors will open at 7 p.m. and the artists will begin working at 8 p.m. With plenty of food, drink and music, the evening promises to be entertaining and filled with beautiful art and engaging demonstrations.
Quick Draw artists and their mediums are: Jeffrey Hull, oil and watercolor painter and signature member of the American Society of Marine Artists whose work reflects his love of the sea and its surroundings; Michael Orwick, nature and landscape painter and developer of his signature style of “Inspired Expressionism;” Paula Blackwell, encaustic painter, fascinated by the ability of encaustic painting to reveal and obscure, resulting in a complex terrain of light, color and texture; Eric Jacobsen, a Plein Air painter who takes his oils wherever he goes, setting up on site and painting to create a certain mood; David Jonathan Marshall, who captures movement and animation as a direct reflection of his view of the world – colorful and imaginative; Heather Soderberg, who followed her father into his bronze foundry, sold her first sculptures at age 3, and has a signature piece at the Port of Cascade Locks: “Sacagawea, Pompi and Seaman,” famous for its emotional impact; Nathan Bennett, whose medium is patina: using silicon bronze plate, iron, silver, copper and other chemical compounds – and fire – his works convey “an intersection of what I think … what I say … what I feel”; and Josh Henrie, painter and sculptor whose style reflects the raw emotion and beauty of our coastal surroundings.
Their work may be seen at the following galleries throughout the festival weekend: Jeffrey Hull at Jeffrey Hull Gallery; Michael Orwick at DragonFire Gallery; David Jonathan Marshall at Modern Villa Gallery; Nathan Bennett at Bronze Coast Gallery; Josh Henrie at Primary Elements Gallery; Heather Soderberg at Primary Elements Gallery; Paula Blackwell at White Bird Gallery; and Eric Jacobsen at Northwest by Northwest Gallery.
Each artist brings interesting styles and different techniques to the evening. For example, one technique that is particularly interesting because it is seldom demonstrated is encaustic painting. The paint is made from pure pigment, melted beeswax and damar resin (natural resin from a tree). The paint is applied hot to a ground (usually a wood panel) with a variety of tools and must be lightly fused, layer by layer, with a torch – the most exciting part. The finished work has an aged rustic appearance, entirely fitting since it was developed by ancient Greek shipbuilders, who used hot wax to fill the cracks in their ships. Encaustic art may be gently buffed with a soft cloth to bring out its natural shine and luster.
Rebecca DeVere, an artist in several mediums, turned a painful physical part of her life into beautiful jewelry – easier to work with because it was smaller and not so hard to handle. Her Trunk Show at White Bird Gallery will showcase signature three-strand chokers featuring large stones and Swarovski crystals.
The Spotlight event this year will feature the Curtis Salgado Band Saturday night, Nov. 3 at the Coaster Theatre. Salgado is the model that Belushi used for his “Blues Brothers” character. He has opened for many well-known bands such as Santana (see Page 24 for more information).
In the three days of the Stormy Weather Arts Festival, there will be more than 50 events, demonstrations of technique, talks, exhibits, an art walk, receptions, music everywhere and a book signing at 1:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon at Cannon Beach Book Company. Anna Brentwood will sign “Songbird with Sapphire Eyes,” a rollicking tale about the Roaring ’20s gangsters, flappers, bathtub gin – and survival. Whatever your preference: oil, pastel, watercolor, glass, metal, wood, large, small – or an autographed book – there will be choices galore to satisfy your inner artist.
Be sure to consult the full weekend schedule so you won’t miss anything. Come prepared to be dazzled, entertained, surprised, delighted – and busy!