Wednesday, January 25, 2017

You're Invited: First Friday Artwalk, February 3, 2017

Come to town and join us for a sip of wine, jazzy music, and beautiful art, as we open our new show:

Karen Chaussabel

February 3 – 28, 2017

Opening Reception:
First Friday, February 3, 6-8 pm

In Concert, performing as a duo:

Ranger & Mike Sciacca of

Ranger and the Re-Arrangers
Bainbridge Island’s Own Gypsy Jazz Band

Left from Top: 

About the Show:

Drawing from a great variety of materials Karen Chaussabel follows her own threads of inspiration to create a series of connecting mixed media works for the wall and simpatico clay renderings, using as her primary focus the eternal symbols of vitality and love:  Hearts.

This collection invites the viewer to interact on a very personal level, using sight, touch, and each of our own sparks of recognition to discover the true shape of our own hearts.

About the Artist:

Karen Chaussabel (Bainbridge Island, Washington)
Karen was born in France and grew up in a small village where she and her family were closely connected to nature. She moved to the United States to attend college in the Pacific Northwest, subsequently living in diverse places, ranging from the East Coast to Texas and Canada, attending a course on Creativity at the Visual Arts Centre in MontrĂ©al.  This led to three years of studio work which brought a sense of freedom to explore her creative voice and a realization that cultivating creativity is very much a practice rooted in the process - a process that, for her, has taken on many shapes.

Alone or combined, Karen uses ink, encaustic, thread, pencil, and tools to make marks. She enjoys having a variety of paper and fibers for printmaking, encaustic monotype and mixed media pieces. Karen also appreciates the tactile quality of clay. Materials are very much at the heart of her art. They are the tools she can reach for and count on to bring to form feelings and impressions.
Here she discusses her process and media used in this new show:

Heart is what keeps me in the flow, in coherence with what is. I try my best to listen in, and from there I choose material to partner with. The great variety of materials I draw from enables me to have a range of expressions, to be fluid and in tune with them. Making marks with ink, pen or a bar of melting encaustic paint gives me a feel for gesture and movement where I find myself to be free, open, playful. Those are qualities I pay attention to when I create. Pieces of thread that are stitched or collaged on paper also embody playfulness through their shape, placement. They remind me too of the process of connecting and following the thread of inspiration that moves through me.

Heart is what mentors me in the art of movement, movement guided by a balance between being active and letting go. I embrace a sense of unfolding. Using encaustic paint on a hot plate creates pools of molten wax and when I press the paper onto it to create a monotype, colors swirls, blend. Where the encaustic goes, I follow. With my ceramic hearts, I let what touches me guide the shape, size, texture, but ultimately they come into being from being released into the alchemy of fire. And those bits of glass that became pools evoking water remind me how much I just dive in and see where it takes me!

What I see embodied in these pieces today and what is part of my art making experience are those very movements of the heart.  I am touched and grateful for their presence in my art, in my life, as they connect me to a spirited sense of exploring, discovering, being.

For more about the artist’s work please view her Cradled Hearts video here.

About the Musicians:

Ranger and the Re-Arrangers (Bainbridge Island, Washington)

THE GENRE:  The band plays "Gypsy jazz" or “hot jazz”, created by and named in honor of Django Reinhardt, Europe's acclaimed composer and guitarist. In the 1930s, Django and violinist Stephane Grappelli blended their own musical legacies with the new American art form of jazz.  Soon their recordings brought international fame to the genre. Gypsy jazz is characterized by upbeat, high energy swing on acoustic instruments, especially guitar, violin, bass, clarinet, and accordion. The band’s repertoire appeals to everyone who enjoys swing standards, traditional Gypsy jazz songs, and world music originals.

Tonight they will be playing for us as a duo, performing as a full band on the Plaza sometime this spring.

Violin:  At the heart of the band’s sound is the sweet violin playing of RANGER SCIACCA, who began playing violin at the age of six. He divided his studies between old-time fiddle and classical violin until a chance encounter with a CD of violin jazz ignited Ranger’s interest in the music of Joe Venuti, Stuff Smith, Stephane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt. Ranger’s playing draws from all the genres he has studied and, according to one reviewer, “features frantic staccato runs and an overall sense of tone that reveals many shades and moods.”

Rhythm Guitar:  MIKE SCIACCA is Ranger's father, and has been backing up Ranger on guitar for over 15 years. Ranger and Mike are descended from Sicilian immigrants, who played jazz in New York at the start of the 20th century.

About The Island Gallery

Established in 2002, The Island Gallery features internationally recognized artists whose work takes traditional art forms in exciting new directions: studio furniture and sculpture; museum quality textile art and wearables; wood fired ceramics from the finest potters in America; paintings and prints; and unique jewelry creations. Our monthly exhibitions include live musical concerts, featuring such genres as jazz, rock, folk, chamber music and performance art.  This, along with its reputation for excellence, makes The Island Gallery a destination spot on
beautiful Bainbridge Island, a short ferry ride from Seattle, and
steps from the new Bainbridge Island Museum of Art.

Contact Us/Visit:

Event Location: 

The Island Gallery, 400 Winslow Way E, #120, Bainbridge Island, Washington.

Underground parking is available at The Winslow off Ericksen Avenue.

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