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Page 1 — Rev. 6/1/05


’ve been a part of the Harvest Festival since the 1970s, working closely with the founders over the years, hosting special events and touring throughout California and the Northwest.  When the Harvest Festival’s San Francisco venue moved to the Concourse Exhibition Center, I became curator of my own special space in the festival, having the opportunity to bring together a group of talented artists and high-quality eclectic crafts.  (Click here to see photographs of my first exhibition at the Concourse Exhibition Center.)  In 2003, I was the Head Curator of the extraordinary group showcased at the Gallery Space of the Concourse.

As an artist myself, I am best known for my diversity in capturing many different moods and emotions in a variety of media.  My ancestry of Russian heritage is apparent in my work which has been compared to Chagall—fanciful, magical and mysterious.  Working in many areas from sculpture, ceramics, oils and pastels, my favorite is oil pastels which, I like to say, "slide and merge like butter."  In more recent years, my work has taken on a lighter, ebullient tone as seen in my collection, That Joyous Feeling Again.  Here I have collected the most blissful and innocent memories and merged them onto my canvas.  In A Gentle Happy Night, two romantic cats, arm in arm and tail to tail, watch a shooting star cross a moonlit sky.  My Sonoma County landscapes of cascading vineyards, majestic oak trees and vibrant tulip fields all seem to glow from within as if part of a life force.

I'm very proud that once again, my daughter Anastasia Zaikine Sinclair was alongside me in the Gallery Space.  An accomplished artist in her own right, Anastasia combines imagery of a fairy tale world and the wonders of nature.  With art all around her as she grew up, she seemed to blossom in the creative ambience and developed her own artistic style.  Furthering her artistic education, she studied abroad in Sri Lanka, Nepal, Scotland and mainland Europe as well as Hanalei Bay, Hawaii.  Taking a little from each of these worlds, her art merges animals, mythology and the ocean, creating fantasies and fables of her own.  Her love of "high firing" is evident in dazzling colors of golds and reds.  Working in oil pastels on paper as well as ceramics, her collection entitled "Island Dreams" reveals her own harmonious nature, blending colors rhythmically like the waves of the ocean.  (Click here or click on Artwork/Anastasia's Creations to see her work.)

  

Gregg Liebgold and Michele Gold, a brother and sister team, were also a part of the Gallery Space.  Michele’s artwork of mixed media including acrylic and gold leaf reflects dream imagery, visions and ancient myth.  The richly layered emotional images of angels, mermaids and dolphins hold ancient, secret stories and symbols that embody a sacred and breathless quality.  The artwork was inspired by her swimming adventures with dolphins in the Bahamas, the Bermuda Triangle and Hawaii.  Employing her love of the ocean, she has also illustrated a fine art storybook about the adventures of a dolphin and a young girl entitled Samantha, A Story of Friendship" which she personally autographed at the festival.  Her brother, Gregg Liebgold, co-creator of their business, Angelnet.com, also exhibited his photographic art.  Through his eyes, Gregg lets you wander the canals of Venice, explore the rainforests of Costa Rica, and walk under the falling leaves by the Seine River.

  

To add to this diversity was Petaluma’s Gregory Stevenson, a wood-turner who uses a lathe on exotic woods to make hollow vessels that reveal the "brilliance of nature" in gnarled burls, swirling grains and fire-singed, ragged edges.  Currently showing at Halem and Company’s Sonoma and Healdsburg galleries are Gregory’s raku-fired pieces.  Combining  panels of soapstone, wood and ceramic into shapes of kimonos and circular gongs, with a touch of Asian and Southwestern accents, a dazzling effect is created which ultimately displays the exotic intricacies and beauty of nature.  Contact Greg at 327 Harvest Lane, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, phone (707) 776-4837.

A potter completed this talented collection of artists, Randy Snyder, who shares his unique knowledge as a ceramics teacher at the Rohnert Park Community Center and El Camino High School.  After 15 years of developing his craft, he has now found his niche in the fine art of raku.  With this low-fire method on stoneware and the use of various combustibles, his exquisite mixture of colorful glazes decorate a wide variety of vases, bowls, ornaments and other ceramic objects.

The San Francisco Harvest Festival is always one of the largest gathering of talented artisans in California and 2003 was no exception. With its huge offering of quality crafts, special features, lively entertainment and tantalizing foods, it was truly a memorable experience.  But remember it's held in many various locations throughout California and the Northwest each year, so please visit the Harvest Festival website or call 707-778-6300 for information on upcoming events.




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