Past Exhibitions 2016

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Humboldt Arts Council Annual Member Exhibition

October 21 to December 11, 2016

The Annual Humboldt Arts Council Member Show is a juried exhibition designed to highlight the fabulous art being produced by HAC Artist Members. As always, this exhibition is eclectic, surprising and enjoyable.

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22nd Annual Junque Arte Competition & Exhibition

October 7 to November 27, 2016

Designed to celebrate artistic creativity on the North Coast, and heighten the awareness of renewable resources in the art making process, each artwork in this juried exhibition is made from 100% recycled materials…reclaimed, reused, recovered, secondhand, salvaged, anything un-new!

To enter the show bring your creative re-purposed art piece to the Museum on Wednesday, September 28 from 12-5p.m. Join us before Arts Alive for on Saturday, November 5 at 5:30 for the Junque Arte Awards. Cash awards will be given to first, second and third place winners in each category!

Sponsored by Recology Humboldt County & Linda Wise


Two Years, 102 Books

August 28 to October 10, 2016

The exhibition will display the works of Artist made books by Design Students at the University of California, Davis.  These books expand on ideals of visual communication while breaking the boundaries of traditional book making. They span from magical fantasies of illusion to personal narratives, that deal with cultural realities, understanding of beauty and gender identification.

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Lanore Cady: Houses & Letters

August 6 to October 10, 2016

The entire 26 piece collection of original artwork from the book, Houses & Letters by Lanore Cady from the Humboldt Arts Council’s Permanent Collection, was recently treated by a conservator for typical paper damage such as foxing, acid migration, and accretions. The collection will be on view for the public to see the transformation of the paper after treatment. Visitors can view beautiful renderings of some of Humboldt’s most historic buildings and homes while reading related text executed in Cady’s brush-painted calligraphy. These works of art were then published as an alphabet book, Houses & Letters. The original books will be available for purchase in the MGMA Museum Store.

Collecting works of art is one of the most basic undertakings of an art museum. Moreover, what the museum collects strongly determines its overall character and influence in the art community at large. As a consequence, the Humboldt Arts Council in the Morris Graves Museum of Art is founded upon the principles of ethical art collecting and stewardship. The Museum recognizes that it holds for posterity a significant portion of our cultural wealth. The addition of Houses & Letters to the HAC Permanent Collection is a wonderful gift of local history, and the Humboldt Arts Council is proud that the pieces have been restored to ensure visitors for future generations can enjoy this beautiful collection.

The next step for caring for this collection is to have all 26 works of art framed in museum quality products that will not cause any further damage to the paper. Being that this collection is so important to our local culture, community members are invited to support this effort by donating funds for new archival framing. Donors of $100 will receive an original print from the series and donors of $500 or over will receive an original print signed by Cady.


Jave Yoshimoto: The Fragile World

August 6 to October 1, 2016

Jave Yoshimoto is a visual artist and educator based in Omaha, Nebraska. He received his BA in University of California Santa Barbara, his MA in Art Therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and his MFA from Syracuse University. He believes in creating works that are sincere and true to his authentic self, and teaches his students to do the same at University of Nebraska at Omaha.

This exhibition focuses on "disaster series" which was inspired by the great Japanese earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. After receiving the news and observing the devastation of the country where he was initially born, he collected images and collaged a composition to pay honor and homage to those who lost their homes, livelihood and lives that day. The end result was a 30 feet long scroll painting on paper completed in gouache, with large, flat color sections that also was inspired by the aesthetics traditional Japanese woodblock prints. He believes that tragedies such as this speaks on the narratives of humanity that we face in the wake of catastrophes, and wish to bring awareness to the history of the event and inspire to help those in need to this day.

Exhibition Sponsored by Betty Osborne

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Kamome: A Tsunami Boat Comes Home

August 6 to October 2, 2016

A little over two years after the magnitude 9.0 Tohoku-oki  earthquake triggered a massive tsunami off the coast of northeastern Japan, a lone boat washed up on the shores of Crescent City, California.  The confirmation of the boat as belonging to a high school in Rikuzentakata was first the step in an amazing story that has linked two tsunami-vulnerable communities on opposite sides of the Pacific and initiated friendships between high school students in both communities. Museum visitors will view Amy Uyeki’s beatiful illustrations from the book Kamome: A Tsunami Boat Comes Home and learn how the journey of this small boat made a big difference in the lives of people living on two continents separated by the vast Pacific Ocean.

By Lori Dengler, Amy Uyeki, and Amya Miller


Humboldt Collects!

July 9 to August 22, 2016

Why are we a nation of storage units, packed basements, and reality TV shows about hoarding? Humboldt Collects presents extraordinary collections from Humboldt County residents, exploring the fascinating practice of collecting.

Celebrating the intrinsic beauty and insightful stories found within the collections and the people who make them, this exhibition examines how the items we collect inform notions of who we are as individuals and a community.

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Ben Funke and Walter Early: Outdoor

July 2 to October 2, 2016

Outdoor is a collaboration of Ben Funke and Walter Early built over the course of 2 weeks in February. Featured in this exhibition are five large intensely colored modernist steel sculptures that will activate the garden with an electric palette.  The duo’s abstract constructions appear to be following in the footsteps of Anthony Caro, Mark Di Suvero and Richard Deacon.

Early and Funke were studio mates during graduate school at the University of Notre Dame.  Early is a sculptor from the state of Kentucky and Funke resides on California’s north coast.  They recently exhibited their show “Chronic Fatigue” at HSU’s First Street Gallery.  

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Chuck Johnson: Soul Night

July 2 to August 2, 2016

A multifarious career in the audio/visual industry has led Chuck Johnson of Freak Photo to team up with clients such as The Library of Congress, The Smithsonian Institute, Academy and Grammy Award winning composers, musicians, and just plain wonderful people. He currently produces The Humboldt Live Sessions, a music video series shot on locations all around Humboldt County.

The Soul Night installation is inspired by The Big Picture Humboldt, an exhibition curated by Johnson, utilizing and beautifying disused public spaces with wheat-pasted, large format black and white photographs.  This series of photographs explores the ecstatic ritual of engaging in one of Humboldt’s most coveted nightlife experiences.

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Treacy Ziegler: States of Waiting

June 11 to July 31, 2016

Treacy Ziegler has been exhibiting her art for the past 25 years in various galleries throughout the United States and Canada. Six years ago she began seeking a different audience and began exhibiting her work in high security prisons. As a consequence, she conducts ongoing prison art workshops in various states and develops through-the-mail art projects for a network of 3500 prisoners throughout US. 

The paintings and bronze sculpture in this exhibition have been influenced by Ziegler’s involvement in prisons. Although birds are usually experienced as a metaphor for freedom, the bronze birds in this exhibition are not free but exist within the symbiotic relationship between space and being. The paintings, devoid of specific beings, are infused with a contradictory presence suggesting something has just happened or something is about to happen. If being cannot exist without space; space cannot exist without being.

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David Boston: 33 Years

June 4 to July 31, 2016

"I began photographing the landscape around the historic Carson Hunting Lodge in 1979, first as a friend of Bill Burgess, son of the owner, Dr. Peter Burgess, and later when I became the main caretaker of the then long-neglected estate grounds. In 1981 I was contracted by Dr. Burgess to undertake extended restoration of the 10 acres surrounding the former hunting lodge which was built in the late 1800s. As a photographer, I also documented the land and water around the lodge on a regular basis." David Boston shares the environmental and aesthetic changes that occurred over 33 years, at the historic Carson Hunting Lodge showing the transformation of the original gardens into a formal garden estate.

Exhibition Sponsored by: Morgan Stanley Smith Barney; Paul Nickolson, State Farm Insurance; Humboldt Audiology; Kenneth S. Singleton, DDS; Thomas Rydz, MD; and the Art Center Frame Shop

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Brooke Hall Holve: Cuts Make You.

May 28 to July 3, 2016

Brooke Holve contemplates the poetics of seeing in Cuts Make You., an exhibition of mixed media constructions, installations and an artist book. Her work reflects an exploration of ‘cutting’ as process and form as she cuts to see and cuts to make. She is interested in how to apply process to a material and arrive to a form that refers back to its making. The work is informed by the changing role of the book as the world moves to primarily digital delivery systems. Discarded book remnants are the dominant material of this work.

Brooke lives and works in Sebastopol, CA. A visual artist for more than two decades, her art practice has taken her through explorations of calligraphy, bookbinding, printmaking, digital technology and poetry. Interested in combining mediums, she draws from each discipline to make mixed media works, installations, constructions, and artist books. Her probing work investigates culture, memory, place, language, time and natural phenomena. She often looks for materials and objects that hold a history. The interplay of the materials and methods inform her process; and over time expose possibilities for shaping form. She often attempts to put together disparate ‘things’ that have come apart, but were once traditional structures used to preserve, protect and hold.

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5x7 Exhibition & Art Splurge

May 7 to May 22, 2016

Five X Seven is an art sale and exhibition benefiting the HAC exhibitions and Youth Arts Education Programs. Dozens of recognized California artists create unique works of 2D art on identical 5” x 7” boards or 3D works of the same size. Each 5×7-inch artwork is only $100, or $75 for HAC/MGMA members (yet ANOTHER great reason to become a member today!). With lots of works to choose from, this is your chance to have first pick and build or add to your art collection. All pieces are displayed anonymously – only when you purchase a work of art will you discover who created it. One of the North Coast’s most unique artistic events…you can’t afford to miss it!

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Lynette Cook: Catching Shadows

April 23 to June 5, 2016

Lynette Cook’s shadow-centric urban scenes – executed using exceptional concentration, patience, and skill – pay homage and provide clues to the individual lives of those who inhabit San Francisco’s Chinatown and neighboring communities. Yet the life-like acrylic paintings – capturing light as it dramatically moves across this unique environment with its utility poles, balconies, stairs, and laundry hanging out to dry – also represent that which is universal in human experience and connects people on a basic level. With meticulous detail and vibrant color strategically placed, the commonplace is celebrated and rises to the extraordinary.


15th Annual Northwest Eye Regional Photography Competition & Exhibition

April 9 to May 29, 2016

The Northwest Eye is a five-state regional fine art photography competition and exhibition highlighting the current trends in the art of photography. This exhibition showcases the creativity and beauty caught by some of the finest photographers in the Northwest.

Sponsored by Pierson Building Center


Erik Reel: Full Circle

March 12 to May 1, 2016

It gives me great pleasure to be doing a show in conjunction with the Morris Graves Museum and the Humboldt Arts Council, institutions with such strong connections to an artist whose work that, along with Mark Tobey, greatly influenced me when I was growing up in Seattle.  These artists in both their work and their lives were instrumental in my early development as an artist and in the directions I chose to investigate. In a way, this exhibition, psychologically, is a coming full circle. Thus the title, “Full Circle”, which also alludes loosely to the obvious visual aspects of my current work as well.

Morris Graves’ visual influence is more obvious in Reel’s early work. His current work has a starting point closer to Mark Tobey’s late “white writing” paintings.  He remembers when the big technicolor movies came out. Back then, a lot of Northwest painters stuck to a palette dominated by the ochres, black and white that Graves and Tobey used so effectively.  But  for Reel, color has always been a central aspect of his painting practice, even from the beginning. At one point someone asked him what he wanted to do when he grew up. He told them, “I want to paint technicolor Tobeys.”

This exhibition contains a set of works on paper created especially for this exhibition and space. These works on paper are “bookended” by two works on canvas: an earlier pre-curser painting to this group and a painting contemporary to this group from a dramatically different set of work in order to acquaint those who may be totally unfamiliar with his work with a hint of a broader introduction to his range.


Dean Hunsaker: Musical Chairs

March 5 to April 7, 2016

Dean Hunsaker is a SF Bay Area visual artist who began his career after moving from New York to California to pursue a PhD in sociology at the University of California. At the time the burgeoning field of visual studies inspired him to study photography. He soon left academia for a career in the visual arts, which has included drawing, painting, mixed media and assemblage. For over 20 years he has exhibited in galleries and municipal exhibition spaces in the Western
states. In addition he has participated in public art projects with several Bay Area cities.


THE CHILDREN’S GAME MUSICAL CHAIRS teaches us at an early age the value of a
chair as a symbol of comfort and civility, which is perhaps why taking a chair at another’s expense is only acceptable in the ritual context of a child’s game. In Musical Chairs we are allowed to abandon civility and selfishly take the nearest seat when the music stops., knowing that one of our fellow players will be left seatless. We can even laugh about it since it is, after all, a game.

Now consider that in the recent economic crisis many participants (players) lost so much as a place to sit, compliments of a gamed economy.  Fueled by a whole lot of self-interest and reckless abandon, the economy  was no child’s game, but one played by adults, or perhaps an adult  game where adults behaved like children. Capricious game-playing with calamitous results.

THE SERIES OF PAINTINGS MUSICAL CHAIRS presents a meditation on the recent economic crisis. Extending the metaphor of the children’s game–a lot of people lost their seats and then some. To underscore this grim reality the viewer is presented with various compositions of decomposing chairs which are always vacant.

The titles and imagery of the paintings are suggestive in this regard. The ironically titled work Circular Thinking, for example, is comprised of 3 chairs, each on a small vertical panel, which rest inside in a larger horizontal panel. Within the same panel fragments of old music scores appear
faintly in the background with red circles floating across the surface.  The circle motif appears throughout the paintings, to reinforce the notion of circular thinking, in which participants circle around a diminishing number of chairs, knowing in advance that only one can ultimately remain. Last Chair Standing, which represents the sole survivor of the game, is comprised of a single blackened chair against a hot red background.  The painting “Remains of the Day” presents a trio of chairs receding into a grayed background, while in the foreground a pair of pigeons peck at crumbs on the ground, oblivious to the follies of humanity.



February 27 to April 3, 2016

The group exhibition titled Hybrid, highlights the work of Ken Graves, John Hundt, Catie O’Leary and Vanessa Woods, combining disparate elements to create new visual systems. Using original paper ephemera and found material, each artist in the show reconfigures the human body in some way to generate new narratives that explore identity, surrealism, and the subconscious.

The title, Hybrid refers to the ways that heterogeneous images can be combined into fluid entities. The title also refers to the medium of collage, which in of itself is a hybrid—made by layering found images and their fragments to form a seamless whole.
In the show, each artist’s work is distinctive but shares a common theme. All exploit and distort the use of symbols and the human body to appropriate and reassign meaning. In John Hundt’s work for example, the formal strategy of totems is employed to create figures that are built up with a combination of human, machine, animal and object parts. In Woods’ work, new iconography is generated through bundles of fabric and body parts that become historical allegories reimagined. In Graves’s work the male figure is re-contextualized in surreal landscapes that emphasize the body’s ability to fascinate and threaten. In O’Leary’s work, towers of fragmented objects, scientific tools and body parts become reinvented human still lives. More than 30 collages made from 1988-2014 will be included in the exhibit.


Clay Vorhes: Trapeze Paintings

January 16 to March 6, 2016

"These paintings are about the contradictions of history in painting. I am attempting to use as much variety as possible in their creation. The best paintings through time utilize an “opposites attract” principle in regards to the notions of the extreme and I am trying to mimic that concept.

Although objective in appearance regarding the figures, I try to incorporate as much abstraction as I can. The blending of objective and non-objective elements in a single painting is something that fascinates me. As such, I try to pursue that end as far as possible and still produce a credible work. I see lots of abstract elements in everyday life. Diebenkorn’s search for the abstract in reality is something that occupied him and I try to adopt his philosophy. Elmer Bischoff did the same, albeit from a different perspective.

I try to infuse as much color as possible and still make my work plausible. The variety of color and texture is something I admire in the work of the Impressionists, Post-Impressionists, Fauves and especially the California Bay Area Figurative painters. I look to them for guidance...I want my paintings to look like paintings, not taxidermy.

One goal of the Trapeze series is to explore all of the possibilities of painting. The use of multiple, complex planes intrigues me and I try to work with as many planes as possible. Incorporating Cezanne’s use of the picture plane is illuminating. Multiple vantage points, viewpoints, sizes and scales are many of the elementals I wish to explore…much like Thiebaud does in his Sacramento Valley landscape works. At the same time, I am trying to flatten the picture plane, much like Matisse.

Besides the above mentioned, my influences for this series are de Kooning and the Abstract Expressionist painters for their immediacy and aggressive paint handling. I also reference the Cubists Picasso and Braque with their pursuit of multiple viewpoints and M.C. Escher’s stairwell works. The structural components of the Bay Area Figurative paintings are something I aspire to. Bonnard is referenced for his use of color and inner radiance. Kandinsky has inadvertently snuck in with his use of a basic line developing into complex planes. The figures are inspired by the Impressionists and Bay Area Figurative painters, as well as Vuillard, Hopper, and de Kooning.

On an emotional level, these works are about life. The tightrope we all walk irrespective of age, race, creed, religion, economics and everything in between. While painting these works, I experience the fun and elation of success, the bitter agony of defeat, the fear of failure and the reality of failing. Getting up and trying it all over again, accompanied by the joys and horrors of the living experience. I hope the viewer will experience the butterflies in our stomach before that and all of the stresses…the good and bad in between. I hope the works reveal all of the experiences of humanity…that which makes us who and what we are."

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Mary Louise Anderson: Spontaneity, Harmony & Peace

January 16 to February 28, 2016

Mary Louise Anderson sees, appreciates and translates the environment around us
through watercolor, oil and mixed media. She draws inspriration from North Coast
Rivers, beaches and forests.


Lou Bermingham - Into the Deep: Visions of Infinity

January 9 to February 21, 2016

After years of creating paintings, drawings, architectural glass panels, and installations, Lou Bermingham had a dream in which he saw over 200 images flashing across his dreaming memory. When he woke up he painted the first one he could remember and have been influenced by this vision ever since. His artwork is therefore influenced by dreams, Aikido training, Egyptian, Asian, and Tribal artwork, and natural imagery found while exploring caves. For this exhibition his abstract visions link to the ancient gods Isis, Osiris, and Athena and their visual rhythms and esoteric motifs. He believes art making is an alchemical process which allows the artist to transform base visions into vital energy needed for the rebalancing of ourselves, our consciousness, and our world.

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Lustrous Lines: Contemporary Metalpoint Drawings

November 21 to January 3, 2016

Lustrous Lines: Contemporary Metalpoint Drawings offers a 21st century update to a quietly powerful and shimmering drawing medium that originated in the 8th century AD.  Today’s artists, in the USA, the UK and Australia, selected for this show by metalpoint artists and curators Jeannine Cook and Jeffrey Lewis, Professor of Art at Auburn University, AL, demonstrate a vigourous inventiveness in subject matter and technical approach in this exacting, demanding medium.  The 43 drawings, principally in silver and gold, form a compelling and unusual body of work that attests to the dedication of these noted artists to this ancient yet very modern medium of metalpoint.