Divas on Display

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | DAILY REPUBLIC | September 18, 2008 16:22

FAIRFIELD - Gens. George Patton and Colin Powell may have been in separate wars, but the famous pair are together at the ArtDivas' new exhibit, which opened Thursday at the Fairfield City Gallery.

'I once heard Colin Powell talk about our flattened globalized world,' said ArtDiva Annie Johnson. 'I liked that and I wondered how I could create it.'

The answer came from an old plow disc from the farm, computer wires and recycled wooden blocks used to form the seven continents. 'Our Flat Globalized World' is one of about 30 creations that will be displayed during the show.

With 'General Patton's Footprints,' Johnson will utilize a box filled with sand. Buried within are a variety of rusted objects, including a gas can, from the desert in which Patton trained.

Above it will hang an acrylic on paper painting, framed with glass, so people see their reflection, and hopefully contemplate the planet's treasures.

All seven members of the ArtDivas are featured in the show. The group was borne about five years ago and this is their third show.

Each member was required to do a minimum of three pieces; some submitted more. The only requirements: One piece had to be 'scorched' while another had to use copper.

'When we do a show, we first come up with a theme,' said member Anna Maria Sablan.

Jan Radesky was putting the final touches on one of her entries earlier this week. 'What's It All About: Mommy and Daddy Where Are You' features a doll with map strips across her face and strips of map fabric in her hair. 'She's a child of the world,' Radesky said.

'I had this idea to do something young and innocent,' Radesky said. 'That made me think of dolls.'

The doll's apron is being scorched from the factory pollution below it. Next to the factory is a single tree, an option humans can choose, Radesky said. The doll also holds an apple, complete with a leaf, to represent the innocents. 'Hopefully people will contemplate what it means,' she said.

Six of the ArtDivas live in Fairfield, coincidentally within a quarter mile of each other. 'Being an artist is not just making art; it's actually business,' said ArtDiva Ann Jacobs. 'As ArtDivas, we share the chores. It becomes a sisterhood, too.'

One of Jacobs' works is 'Plant a Flower, Save a Bee' made of packing material. On it is a sprinkling of onion seeds. 'I hope when this goes into the ground, the onion seeds will blossom,' she said, adding that the entire piece is recyclable.

Janet Manalo has a piece titled 'What Goes Around' made of white plastic pull tabs and objects she found while walking her dog. There's also an unexpected item encased in it, an ant that made its way into the glass to which the tabs are adhered to.

'It took almost a year to collect (all the tabs),' she said. But it was well worth it. 'It's weird,' Manalo said looking at it. Weird, in a beautiful way. 'When you have a common object and you multiply it en masse, it takes on its own beauty. It becomes its own beauty.'

Reach Amy Maginnis-Honey at 427-6957 or amaginnis@dailyrepublic.net.

The seven ArtDivas are: Ann Jacobs, Annie Johnson, Janet Manalo, Jan Radesky, Robin Rossi, Anna Maria Sablan, and Brigitte Sukeforth.



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