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Paper & Clay 3 introduces ‘Crossroads’ by Marti Bledsoe

Paper & Clay 3 continues at SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts: through Aug. 8, featuring a wide range of functional and sculptural ceramics as well as an impressive selection of hand-pressed Reductive Ink monoprints.

There is something for everyone in this diverse invitational, whether you are a longtime collector of original prints and ceramics, or simply an appreciator of art, interested in enjoying a showcasing of exciting new work.

The 16 artists selected for inclusion hail from Colorado, Arizona, Montana and Texas, and are comprised of Northern Arizona University (NAU) educators/alumni/undergraduates, as well as several emerging and nationally recognized printmakers.

This third annual Paper & Clay invitational exhibition marks SHY RABBIT’s 25th exhibition, as the 4,000 square-foot art center enters into its seventh year of operation in Pagosa Springs.

SHY RABBIT is open to the public daily — at no charge — from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and evenings by appointment.

The “Clay” works chosen for display include an intriguing blend of functional, sculptural and figurative ceramics produced by ceramics instructor, Steven Schaeffer, M.F.A., of Northern Arizona University (NAU), Flagstaff, along with several of NAU’s noteworthy graduate students, prominent professional ceramic artists and art educators currently working in the field.

The ceramic artists selected for inclusion in Paper & Clay 3 are: Chelsea Arndt, Tristyn H. Bustamante, James Alfred Coquia, Jack Heimerman, Jason Hess, Blake McCord, Julie Ogier, Larry Phan, Steven Schaeffer, and Duncan Tweed.

In consideration of the exemplary work produced during Printmaking without a Press 1-3 WORK-shops @ SHY RABBIT, a select group of advanced printmakers were invited by professional artist and workshop instructor D. Michael Coffee, to participate in Paper & Clay 3.

The “Paper” works on display represent a commitment by these artists to the advancement of the Reductive Ink printmaking process, developed by Coffee over the course of the last 23 years.

The printmakers selected for inclusion in Paper & Clay 3 are Sandy Applegate, Marti Bledsoe, Lal Echterhoff, Linda Echterhoff and Maureen May.

This week’s featured artist, Marti Bledsoe, has working studios in Pagosa Springs and in Horseshoe Bay, in the Texas Hill Country.

Bledsoe’s latest series of Reductive Ink monoprints “Crossroads,” was inspired by aerial views that she experienced while flying in the western part of the United States with her husband, Al.

Bledsoe photographs regularly during their flights, capturing clouds and interesting formations below, intrigued by the mysterious shapes, patterns, and color combinations that she sees through her window.

“In this aerial excursion of ink on paper, I explore the world of boundless freedom in the air,” states Bledsoe, “where the only boundaries I see are crossroads.

“The deep blue of the endless sky fascinates me as it makes a color transition and meets the earth.

“I am also intrigued by the intersections and all the elements that create them, these markings on the face of the earth: the plowed dirt, the ephemeral lakebeds, ponds, and the shape of the fields where they meet the roads.

“The series breaks into a world with no boundaries, on a continuing journey where only the crossroads mark my way,” Bledsoe continues.

Bledsoe’s “Crossroads” series captures the seemingly endless view as it appears through her window, and provides it to the viewer for his/her own enjoyment and personal interpretation.

“The greatest gift I have received in pursuing my art has been the gift of really seeing the world around me. The window is open, so take a look ...”

SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts: Gallery, Studio & Workshops is located at 333 Bastille Drive, two blocks north of U.S. 160, off of North Pagosa Boulevard. 

The 4,000 square-foot art center houses a fine art gallery and ceramic studio, two mixed-media workshops and rotating exhibition spaces.

SHY RABBIT presents four to six exhibitions annually, showcasing the finest in contemporary art by emerging, mid-career and nationally recognized artists from throughout the country.

SHY RABBIT’s 2010 exhibition schedule continues with SHY RABBIT Print National 2, Sept. 4–Oct. 31. Juror: Yuji Hiratsuka.

Workshops of all levels are also offered in ceramics, printmaking, and professional artist development, instructed by SHY RABBIT Creative Director D. Michael Coffee.

For more information on Coffee, visit www.dmcarts.com.

For more information on SHY RABBIT, visit www.shyrabbit.com or call 731-2766.

For more information on exhibitions, please visit www.shyrabbit.com/Exhibits.html.