Amy Sherald exhibit CAM St. Louis
Pulitzer Arts Foundation
There is plenty to do this summer in St. Louis and a lot of it free.  Check out the Amy Sherald art exhibit at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis on Washington Ave.  Before going, get to know the artist—a heart transplant recipient and Michelle Obama portraitist—by viewing her talk at the museum here.  Next door to CAM is the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, also free.  This museum presents art as an experience.  Even the building architecture is celebrated.  You will not walk out unchanged.

Sunken Cities exhibit
SLAM collection

Currently the St. Louis Art Museum in Forest Park has a special exhibit of Egyptian treasures.  The Sunken Cities exhibit (free on Fridays) features over 200 artifacts, including three 16-foot sculptures. Some items have deteriorated from centuries under water so I suggest visiting the SLAM third floor gallery first to appreciate the artistry and intricacy in their Egyptian collection. In addition to underwater finds, there are stunning items from museums in Cairo and Alexandria that make the special exhibit worthwhile. The museum is always free and the colossal statues can be seen in the Sculpture Hall without entering the fee area.

Car shows, concerts in the park, public art, historical neighborhoods and cemeteries are all free to the seeker. Explore and find the treasures your city offers.

Car show, park concert, and Lafayette Square home
The Awakening, Chesterfield, Missouri
                                      Images are copyrighted.  Click to enlarge.


Summer is not quite upon us officially, however, the clover is in bloom so it is summer to me. Running barefoot across blooming lawns while dodging bees is a childhood memory I associate with those carefree days.  Neighborhood friends would gather in the grass and fashion jewelry from the clover flowers.  The stems are long, strong and pliable making it easy to knot one to another.  I mentioned that it was jewelry making time to a neighbor/friend and she was unfamiliar with the craft.  Well, no more.  She and her kids are schooled now.  Start knotting before the clover, and summer, fade away.



Heading West

Once again the desert called for us.  Despite only being an extended weekend trip, after attending to some business, we were able to enjoy a few of the gifts the area has to offer.  Number one being the sun.  We almost did not recognize it after the long Winter the Midwest has been experiencing.

Flying in and out of Phoenix allowed us to visit the Desert Botanical Garden where many cactus were in bloom.  Temps were unseasonably warm and the city hit 100 degrees the day we departed.  Even in the heat, the colors vibrated.

"The desert,
to those who do listen, is more likely to provoke awe than to invite conquest."

--Joseph Wood Krutch

"My paintings honor the earth.  Their emotional and intellectual content conveys the experience of a place, not just a picture of it."

--Joella Jean Mahoney

Cathedral Rock, Sedona, Arizona

Farther North, they, too, were experiencing a warmer than normal April but no one was complaining. Sedona had good crowds but the Spring Break glut had dispersed.  Lucky us.  While in the area we revisited Montezuma Well National Monument and walked among the quiet ruins.  No crowds here.

Montezuma's Well National Monument, Rimrock, AZ

A quick trip to Flagstaff allowed me to finally visit the Museum of Northern Arizona.  It houses a beautiful collection of Native American art including stunning pottery and jewelry.  The museum also owns a collection of works by artist and friend Joella Jean Mahoney.   I wrote of her passing last year and it was good to see her spirit shine among the treasures.

All good things must come to an end, or, must they?  We will return to the desert, and Joella's art continues to enchant museum goers every day.  Not, so long, Arizona, but, until we meet again.


Sometimes things do not go as planned and you just have to roll with it.  Mother Nature decided we needed more snow.  Forsythia and daffodils are blooming but they can take it. Surely Spring temps are right around the corner.  Hope there was a little sunshine in your basket.


You are not seeing things.  This is a GIF for your enjoyment.


Rooftop view of the Soulard neighborhood in St. Louis 

It has been many years since I entered a piece into an art show.  A few weeks ago Soulard Art Gallery had a call for entries for an upcoming Steampunk show.  Drawn to the fantastical nature of the theme and location of the gallery, I submitted two pieces and they were accepted.
Drawing entries are shown in silver (left) and white frames (right).
Steampunk, for the unaware, is a genre of science fiction depicting an alternate version of the historic past (generally 19th-century Victorian England) and often involves advanced technologies based on steam power. The Urban Dictionary describes it as "What the past would look like if the future had happened sooner."   

Soulard residence
Soulard is one of the oldest communities in the city of St. Louis. It is largely a residential neighborhood but businesses include restaurants, bars, and the Anheuser-Busch Brewery.  Many of its stately homes date to the mid- to late-19th century. 
The opening reception for the show was Friday, February 23rd and it was a packed house.  So much so, I need to return before the show ends on March 29th to get a better look at the artwork.  If you can't make it to the gallery, visit the Soulard Gallery Facebook page and scroll down to the February 22nd post to see a video of the show.


Hope yours is gearing up to be a happy Valentine's Day.