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Menlo Park Sidewalk Fine Arts Festival

April 22, 2017
10:00 am

The Menlo Park Sidewalk Fine Arts Festival, celebrating its 35th year, welcomes visitors to browse among the handcrafted works of more than 90 artists whose displays include fine jewelry, photography from many different perspectives, decorative and functional ceramics, abstract and representational paintings, gorgeous turned woodwork and much more. This open-air marketplace celebrates the artists’ talent and an opportunity to learn about their inspiration in creating lasting beauty. This annual free, family event, sponsored by the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, takes place along tree-lined Santa Cruz Avenue off El Camino Real Friday and Saturday, April 21 and 22, from 10 am to 6 pm, and Sunday, April 23 from 10am to 5pm. Among the celebrated art and artists: Ceramics Bruno Kark is an enthusiast of the historic vases of Japan, Korea, China, and the Pacific Rim. He spent years in Japan perfecting the art of Japanese ceramics and today creates functional everyday ceramics with elegant designs. Bruno uses classic glazes such as Shino, Tenmoku, Oribe and Celadon resulting in traditional earth tones that complement a variety of ceramic forms ranging from from jars that fit in the palm of your hand to large-scale works of wheel thrown vases (some over four feet tall) and platters up to three feet in diameter. Many current works are built to join with the compositions of Ikebana flower arranging, particularly the abstract Sogetsu school. Bruno will have many items on display including wonderfully glazed and textured beer flutes, mugs, and Yunomia teacups. Jewelry The opportunity to work for Monsieur Yves Saint Laurent helped shape the jewelry that Sipora Aguia creates today. She was part of Cinemarc, the workshop responsible for the jewelry collection of 2001, and discovered haute couture. The experience influenced her work and her understanding of what true quality is. “I often base my designs on strong geometric shapes, to which I endeavor to bring a freshness and an elegance,” said Sipora. “My goal is to create original, designer pieces that can be worn regularly and cherished as keepsakes.” Come see Sipora’s collection of rings, bracelets, necklaces and more, all inspired by her travels around the world. Mixed Media Jeni Bate is noted for her love of painting the skies and she works in many different mediums to depict it: watercolor, acrylic, murals, oil, refractured watercolor, watercolor collage and various mixtures. She also loves working on different surfaces such as wood, metal or fiberglass, and on differently shaped surfaces. "I paint the skies with peace and passion because that's the way they paint me,” says Jeni. The refractured watercolor medium she uses is all transparent watercolor paint on watercolor paper. Each sky or water reflection is sometimes painted up to five times, depending on the desired finished size. Each variant incorporates slightly different colors, and since it is wet-on-wet it is always a little different each time. The paintings are then cut and collaged together. Some are framed under glass, others are mounted on panel and protected with layers of clear acrylic coating so it doesn’t need to be framed. For thin panels Jeni will finish the edges in wraparound style with acrylic paint, and for deeper panels she wraps the collage around the edges. This treatment not only moves the work into a mixed media format, but also allows the viewer to appreciate the texture. From close up or far away, viewing Jeni’s Skyscapes is good for the soul. Printmaking The natural world and its beauty and peace have always inspired Laura Morton. She loves nature’s colors and shapes and strives for a similar sense of balance and harmony in her work. Laura has worked in many mediums over the years, but intaglio printmaking is her longest running favorite because she loves the classic simplicity of black ink on creamy white paper. In many of her etchings Laura also uses watercolor. Recently she has been creating large etching plates that are solely pattern, then printing them in various colors of ink that she mixes. From these papers, which are etchings, she makes collages sometimes adding other papers, including ones she has painted or printed in other ways. “Most of my images are of nature, but I enjoy making abstracted and completely non-objective works as well,” says Laura. Spend a few relaxing hours at the Menlo Park Sidewalk Fine Arts Festival enjoying this boutique event showcasing handcrafted art in the outdoors. For more information about the event, contact the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce at (650) 325-2818 or Pacific Fine Arts Festivals at (209) 276-4394 You can also see more information on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

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