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home : arts & entertainment : arts & entertainment September 20, 2017


9/5/2017 12:02:00 PM
Celebrating Art at the Ranch
Curtiss Abbott has contributed to Art at the Ranch for eight years. photo by Jodi Schneider McNamee
+ click to enlarge
Curtiss Abbott has contributed to Art at the Ranch for eight years. photo by Jodi Schneider McNamee

By Jodi Schneider McNamee


Black Butte Ranch Art Guild has been supporting art in Sisters schools with scholarships from the proceeds of the annual Art at the Ranch show for over three decades. Last Friday evening, the guild held its annual artist reception and silent auction at the Black Butte Ranch Lodge Brooks Room, where guests mingled with artists and bid on their works in a fundraising silent auction.

However, due to the unhealthy air quality forecasted for last weekend, the outdoor art fair scheduled for Saturday was cancelled.

Art at the Ranch has included paintings, sculptures, pottery, jewelry, wood crafts, fiber arts and more. And board member Lynda Sullivan, in charge of scholarships, remembers when it was just a group of women appreciating art.

"We started the art guild in the late 1980s," Sullivan told The Nugget. "Back then the art show was for Black Butte Ranch (BBR) homeowners and their families, and we called it Art in the Barn."

New this year was a gallery show in the Lodge Gallery, featuring paintings, photography, and mixed media.

Barbara McCormick, who is on the Art at the Ranch committee was acting as volunteer coordinator for the show and auction.

"This is an amazing event to volunteer for and to work with. This area is incredible in the amount of art there is and such a variety of different artists," McCormick said. "We have about 50 artists that were going to participate in the outdoor art show that had to be cancelled. But we do have 22 items to be auctioned tonight donated by artists."

Local artist Jill Neal was thrilled that her artwork, "Wild (Tasteful) Horses, Equine Spirits Three" was chosen for this year's Art at the Ranch poster.

Neal is the creative artist behind her Wild (Tasteful) Women - art that captures and celebrates the joyful spirit of women in colorful, full-figured style and whimsy.

"I was established before I moved to Oregon and I started out with wildlife," Neal said. "The Wild (Tasteful) Women art really started taking off and now I have a little more time to go back to my roots and paint more of a variety."

The Lodge displayed two of Neal's Wild (Tasteful) Horses paintings, "Red Horses" and "Fall Herd."

Many of the artists live at the Ranch and have participated in Art at the Ranch over the years. BBR resident Curtiss Abbott has donated his photography to the auction for eight years.

Abbott's interest in photography began with film and the darkroom and grew into the digital age.

"Big Meadow View," one of his larger photography pieces, is currently displayed in the Lodge.

"This photograph was taken in the early morning at BBR," Abbott said.

His images are available locally at Sisters Gallery & Frame Shop, at the Glaze Meadow Spa Shop and Lakeview Bistro at Black Butte Ranch.

Local artist Paul Alan Bennett was on hand during the reception wearing his artwork, a new clothing design in leggings called "The Pizza Eaters."

Bennett studied drawing and ceramics at The Maryland Institute of Art and followed up with an M.A. in Greek history at The University of La Verne, Athens, Greece.

Bennett's artwork has a style that looks like knitting in paint. This evolved from purchasing a pair of knitted gloves in Istanbul. He was drawn to the simple patterns and the texture of the gloves, so he decided to see if he could copy the "knit" look in paint. He used gouache watercolor and the "knit" look gradually became his signature style

"Every year I've lived in Sisters I've been involved in some area of Art at the Ranch," said Bennett.

Recently, Bennett has taken his artwork to a whole new level with a clothing line.

"Many of my students in my art class at COCC were wearing these wonderful leggings and I decided that I wanted to see if I could get my art on leggings," Bennett explained. "And I used to be involved in fabric art and have always liked it. The way they do the printing these days makes it easy to have my art on anything online. So, I found a company in Canada that can print my art on fabric like leggings. I started with just leggings but have now expanded to kimonos, skirts, beanies and dresses. I didn't even know what a pair of capris were before I started all this."









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