Friday, January 30, 2009

Jerry & Larry Bell

Larry Bell may have been the best friend I ever had, but I didn't know it at the time. He was just always there for a laugh or some empathy. He had lots of friends wherever he went, one of those people that everyone just likes. 8 years ago he passed away as we prepared to close Niagara Falls High School where our friendship blossomed. I will miss him forever as well as our frequent phone calls catching up with every detail & event long after he retired. He helped me to have fun at work & to relax about what I could not change.

It hit me when his twin, Jerry, passed away this Fall that the two brothers had made indelible marks on so many of us, from the people-clients & students- they worked for to their coworkers & friends. As I left the funeral home, Ron Concilla gave me this rose, more than a bud, but not fully open. It was on my counter for a few days when I realized that the rose would never fully open-it was frozen in time forever young, just like the Bells. I painted it then but it took a long time to go back to the canvas & complete my requiem for them.

Shadows of  Two Lights-Remember the Bells oil 2009 24x12

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Party at 555 Pine

Lockport Pink House Kath Schifano Kathy PaintingDuring John Polechetti's birthday party, the sun was setting even with the cupola on his home 'The Pink House' in Lockport, while the party guests celebrated on the lawn.

Carl pointed out the yellow glow on the white surface & the camera froze a moment of evening  light. This back corner of the house captures the spectacular architecture of original dentils & brackets; although it is not a 'portrait' it is tribute to the character of the architecture, its solid construction & its current caretakers.
  Party at 555 Pine, 20x30 oil 2009

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Barack & Carl

[Edited with the correct images, this is a 'repost' rather than deja vu.]

FYI- You can easily post a note by clicking on the 'comment' word below. I see them before they are posted, & they will remain 'out of sight' unless you click to see them. 

Three paintings are drying now & will be posted soon. I have been working on several canvases at once. I finally went back to Buffalo Botanical Garden Thursday & enjoyed relaxed charcoal sketching of tropical leaves & flowers while the wind & snow howled around the dome. I'll probably use pastels there next week to capture more Amaryllis for my 13 x 16 series. It was just nice to be back.

Carl has been showing some of his spectacular digital collages in Buffalo lately. He has two art openings next Friday-one at CEPA, the other at Big Orbit. We each have a piece at Art Dialogue this month - our January is hot! I noticed that he had several Barack Obama images created over the past year, so I borrowed this one to share. The spirit of positive energy Obama exudes is infectious, I hope that we can all move forward through the rough times we face in the next few years as our country is repaired. 

Yes We Can Not Fade Away, digital collage 2009 by Carl Schifano
Barack Obama digital collage 2008 Carl Schifano

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Press Releases

There is another K Schifano on the web, a teeny-bopper who films herself jumping on the couch & posts the 'film' on her own blog. Occasionally interested in whether her nubile pursuits come up when I am googled, I found recently published press releases about myself! Click on these for the latest.
It's snowing-a lot-& more snow is expected with record breaking cold. I am doing my best to stay out of trouble while my newest painting dries a bit so I can get back to waves, water, rapids and mist. Very abstract, yet realistic. We had a lot of house guests & fun for the holidays & painting was put aside. It's nice to be painting again.
Snow Angel by Sandi Peters  New Year's 2009

Monday, January 5, 2009

Requiem for a cat

Harley is gone. A week has gone by & the lack of a companion in the morning, the absent plop of descent from a nap as well as adjusting from the habits of living with a pet are difficult. 16 years old, she never lost her feral cat nature, barely tolerated humans & let them know when she was ready for their attention. She learned their language, clearly speaking a minimum of terms-out, door, milk, Carl & thanks; every visitor was greeted with a hello but don't touch me-yet.  Originally named for her constant loud purring, she communicated well even though her meow was more human than cat. She couldn't say 'brush me', but was recently able to convince me to keep her groomed by bringing me to the closet & looking ragged. Harley considered herself our caretaker, reminding us of bedtime by a game of unblinking staring until we finally turned out the lights or responded 'go to sleep'. If I painted late in the studio she would continue to visit me & scratch herself on the easel, shaking it until I responded with a pat. She may have been part border collie the way she herded us to bed.
 This summer was rough on Harley-sleeping 23.5 hours a day can wear one out. Stray cats were clamoring for ownership of territory which finally diminished to the area of the porch chair cushion. Her health failed until it was difficult to navigate the stairs & she stopped eating. We knew she was fulfilling her own 'bucket list' when she tried sleeping on the air bed with Jeremy & Robin & then Chris had her company in his bed. This was truly unusual from a cat who never slept with anyone or stayed on a lap more than 2 minutes. With ten in the house for Christmas week, Harley had a private goodbye with each of us. 
Harley preferred sunshine, sleeping outdoors & drinking puddle water, she was a serious hunter & kept a collection of  mice, voles & bird remains on the porch for us to enjoy.  Sunning herself, she always managed to keep her hot black fur in the shade for serious naps. 
Harley's hummer is silenced & it is awful quiet around here.
Half Shade Harley, photo 2008

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Think Green at Art Dialogue Gallery

Imagine this in an 8 ply mat with wide margins, mounted in a carved old gold color wood frame. It's at Art Dialogue Gallery this month, for the "Think Green" theme exhibit. On view from January 7  there will be a closing reception on January 30th 4-6 pm. Although so many of my paintings deal with green-nature, landscapes, plants, I chose this for the Buffalo show because of its rural location, and the natural life that can be found at the Wellsville, NY  home of Monica & Mike White. Eliminating the plastic & artificiality of suburban society, it is the ultimate in green-entertainment is in nature, & a green lifestyle is entirely possible. 'Home Grown' was added to the title as it hung on my studio wall.
'Home Grown, Wellsville Window', 14x14 pastel, 2007