Milestone anniversary of 9/11 and CD themes for art show
“Beauty and Sorrow,” a CD by singer-songwriter Susan Marie Reeves, and the 20th anniversary of 9/11, were the inspirations for a very special invitational juried art show on view through Oct. 25 at the Palm Loft Gallery in Carpinteria, according to owner Arturo Tello.
All mediums and styles of art were eligible for submission, and any size was acceptable. But each piece had to incorporate the theme of “Beauty and Sorrow” or any of the CD’s song titles: “Beauty and Sorrow,” “My Love Awaits,” “Tequila,” “Falling,” “Gone to Hawaii,” “Home on the Hill,” “Waiting,” “If I Could Dream Again,” “Today Is Our Day,” “Great Blue Sky” and “Sea of Love.”
“Once a year at this time, I host this show with the theme ‘Make Hay While the Sun Shines,’ but this year, it opened on Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of 9/11, which is why I thought the theme of beauty and sorrow was more appropriate,” said Mr. Tello, a well-known local artist and co-founder of the Oak Group of artists.
“I have a theory that with all the violence and inhumanity in today’s world, there is also all this beauty left to us.”
He also has a theory that many painters are frustrated songwriters like himself.
“I began songwriting when I was 50. I took an adult ed class with Nicola Gordon, who introduced me to Susan Reeves,” Mr. Tello, 66, told the News-Press. “Susan began playing her guitar at the gallery, and we decided that songwriters needed to share their songs. There needed to be a community of songwriters.”
In 2010, he began to host “Song Circles” at 7 p.m. Thursdays at the gallery.
“During the pandemic, we continued on Zoom. We have never failed to meet,” he said.
At the opening reception, Ms. Reeves performed the songs of “Beauty and Sorrow” on her guitar and ukulele along with Dennis Russell, Laura Hemenway, Lisa Macker, Carletta Erb, Mary J. Madden and Dan Phillips.
A painting of Ms. Reeves playing guitar was done by Mary-Gail Green King.
Besides Mr. Tello and Ms. Reeves, other artists in the show are Oleg Bondarenko, Baret Boisson, Molly Burns, Chris Chapman, Ms. Gordon, Ms. Hemenway, John Iwerks, Ms. King, Lindy Kern (ceramics), Jennifer Love, Nancy Pearson, Ms. Reeves, Rodolfo Rivademar and John Wullbrandt.
When he is not painting or tending to the gallery, Mr. Tello keeps busy walking Ruby, a rescue Tibetan Spaniel Pekingese, and Leo, the cat who is named for the late songwriter Leonard Cohen, who wrote “Hallelujah,” and Leonardo da Vinci, the famous artist.
“Ruby insists on three walks a day, and Leo only walks at night,” Mr. Tello said.