Dear Family, Friends, and Diary,
It has been a tumultuous three years since Marianne last showed at Fresno's monthly ArtHop, but she's back. Our artist had been invited to join others at the Fig Tree Gallery's annual invitational. On this hot August Thursday, downtown Fresno was surprisingly busy and it was great to feel part of the activity.
Each invitee was allowed two pieces. Marianne had prepared a pair that reflected the classes she had taken over the last two years; lots of work, finished days before the show.
Part of the fun of an ArtHop show is inviting friends and neighbors to join the activity. Cambridge Avenue neighbors were well represented. Jon and Susan, Geri and Jim, and Gloria all made it. Vern and Joan almost did, but they were stymied by the lack of walkable parking, a senior requirement.
Others also made it, including Susan and Igor, our new/old friends and Priscilla, who came all the way from the western edge of Fresno County. Marianne's Zumba and coffee klatch friend Pat brought her grandson Ricardo. The youngster came because he was interested in Teslas and I gave him and quick sit-down tour with a promise of a zoomy drive another day.
Like neighbors Vern and Joan, Marianne's physical therapist Michelle tried hard, but was dissuaded by downtown confusion and, in her case, restless back seat kids. It's all great and we appreciate the effort by everyone, successful or not.
While Marianne stayed with her work, I wandered over to neighboring art galleries. At Clay Hands, I chatted with artist and friend Ren and checked out her spiky sun and another ceramicist's piggies. All good.
Across the street, I visited the twin galleries of Robert and Piet Ogata. Bob is one of our favorite local artists and one of the most successful. Of course, he's been "in the business" for six or seven decades, so not exactly an overnight success. Daughter Piet is an artist in her own right so it's a family business.
My last stop was at Dixie Salazar's gallery, a huge collection of her colorful and energetic pieces.
Despite the triple-digit weather, it was good to be back in the local art scene. Now we need to work on the next exhibit, whenever and wherever that may be.
John and Marianne.