Posts Tagged ‘Yavapai College’

  • Chasing the sublime: Russell Johnson learns, relearns, and re-relearns to paint, see

    Oct 2, 15 • ndemarino • 5enses, Portfolio7,547 CommentsRead More »

    By James Dungeon The route looked safe enough, but it almost killed him. Russell Johnson was hiking the Grand Canyon with a friend in 2001 when he detoured under an overhang. “I took a step and there was this sheer drop off. Rocks went tumbling into the water,” Johnson said. “It was scary. There was nothing beautiful about it in that moment.” But there was a singularity that arrested his attention. He didn’t know it then, but that was something he needed to evoke in his landscape paintings. That moment has since become a touchstone. “It’s close to what’s called ‘the sublime,’” Johnson said. “I’m trying to transport you to an experience or a place in my paintings. Often, those places are beautiful, too, but I’m trying to balance that place and that moment.” Johnson’s paintings are a dynamic, refreshing beacon in an otherwise crowded field of Western landscapes. Refining that style, however, has a been a journey that’s been neither singular nor entirely linear. “For a long time, I wasn’t sure what I was trying to articulate with my artwork,” Johnson said. “I needed some purpose and contextual background for what I was doing. … I needed some help.”   Outside pursuits Growing up in Prescott, a middle child among 10, Johnson had two favorite places — his room and the great outdoors. “I was able to get lost

  • Brushwork: Robin Lieske (reluctantly, triumphantly) embraces a new medium

    Jun 5, 15 • ndemarino • 5enses, Portfolio6,701 CommentsRead More »

    By James Dungeon She’d put it off for nearly 55 years. But,after resettling in Prescott around 2006, printmaker Robin Lieske finally picked up a paintbrush. “It was time to do painting,” Lieske said. “I’d put it off long enough.” Her introduction to the medium wasn’t exactly encouraging, though. “It felt like somebody had amputated my arm from the elbow down and just stuck a stick in it,” she said. Over the decades, the physicality of printmaking had taken its toll on her, but Lieske wasn’t ready to hang up the proverbial palette. Painting was supposed to herald her artistic rebirth. Instead, the lodestone had proven to be millstone. “Truthfully?” Lieske said. “I hated painting.”   Life & art The middle child of five, Lieske grew up in Minneapolis mesmerized by the works of Goya, Michelangelo, and Velázquez in her parents’ Met Museum of Art books. She started drawing as a child, but decided to pursue the sciences rather than the liberal arts when she enrolled in Prescott College in 1971. “I didn’t last long, though,” Lieske said. “All I wanted to do was draw.” While she was there, she was inspired by Western photographer Jay Dusard, whom she cited as her first graphic arts teacher. Lieske dropped out but stayed in the area for about seven years. During this period, she met her now husband-of-40-some years, Bill, started a family,

  • Reboot!: Yavapai College relaunches film program

    By Helen Stephenson “I’ll be back.” OK, not an Arnold Schwarzenegger sequel but just as cool: The Yavapai College film program is back. It’s been relocated, renamed, and retooled. Formerly the Sedona Film School at Yavapai College, the updated program has been dubbed the Film and Media Arts Program. The program’s core is located on the Verde Valley Campus in Clarkdale with some classes online and via streaming. How many ways has the film and media business changed since the film program launched in 2000? Let me count the ways: Netflix (OK, that was 1999 but it didn’t really get legs for a few years), YouTube, Hulu, Amazon Prime … and the list continues. Executive Dean Dr. James Perey had a vision: He wanted to see how we could revamp the program and asked me to explore how other colleges run their film and media programs. What we found was that it’s nearly impossible for colleges to keep up with the quickly changing equipment for film and media (unless you’re USC, UCLA, NYU, or Dodge Film School). On top of that, jobs that our graduates will be hired for will use a wide variety of equipment. So, it’s not economically feasible, nor really (in my opinion) logical, to spend your budget for the latest cameras and computers. This was confirmed when we spoke with Bethany Rooney, a director for shows

  • Choice films, choices

    By Helen Stephenson To wit, two completely different films screen in Prescott on Wednesday, Nov. 13. First, the award-winning documentary “People’s Park” screens at 7 p.m. at Prescott College. Director Libbie D. Cohn will be at there for a Q-and-A. Cohn paired with J.P. Sniadecki to create this 78-minute single-shot film made in a public park in Chengdu, China. The film is co-sponsored by the Ecosa Institute, Prescott College, and the Prescott Film Festival. There’s no admission fee, but donations are requested. In a quote from an article in the New York Times, Cohen said that the film was influenced by Chinese scroll paintings, particularly the Song Dynasty-era panorama “Along the River During the Qingming Festival.” From ancient China, we travel to the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center, where the college presents a Civil War symposium in honor of the sesquicentennial of the “Gettysburg Address.” The six-day event takes place at Yavapai College’s Prescott and Verde campuses. The college offers live music from the Civil War era by Bobby Horton, lectures by Yavapai College faculty ranging from “Infectious Disease During the American Civil War,” by biology professor Paul Evans,” to “Native Americans and the Civil War: Roles and Consequences,” by history professor Deborah Roberts, plus three films. The Gettysburg Symposium is a faculty endeavor organized on behalf of the Yavapai College Liberal Studies Department. Films are introduced by Deborah Roberts,

  • Lost & found

    Oct 1, 13 • ndemarino • 5enses, Portfolio6,705 CommentsRead More »

    By Robert Blood There was something sparkly in those 55-gallon drums. Leslee Oaks was sure of it. The Washington state transplant didn’t actively think about what was in them. It was fleeting: Oh, there’s those things again. But, sure enough, a metallic glint caught her eye again and again on her commute to welding class at Yavapai College. One day, probably in 2008, four years moving to the Prescott area, curiosity got the better of Oaks. She stopped and took a closer look. Her revelation didn’t inspire calm; it spurred action. Oaks made her way to whomever’s- barrels-those-were’s house and knocked. The man who answered smiled at her inquiry and proceeded to offer her the lot of them. But that wasn’t enough. Over the years, Oaks and her husband, Bob, came back for more. Sometimes they took pickup truck’s worth. “There were all kinds of shiny things — the kind that make a transmission work,” Oaks says. “He offered me everything I wanted.” Only this gearhead wasn’t interesting in fixing cars. She was interested in making art.   Objet trouvé “When you find something, there’s always a story that goes with it,” says Patti Ortiz as she zips around ’Tis Art Center and Gallery. “That’s the interesting thing about a found object show: It makes artists look around their world in a different way.” The gallery’s third annual found object

  • September stimpack

    Aug 30, 13 • ndemarino • 5enses, Around ... ... the Corner5,992 CommentsRead More »

    By Ruby Jackson Saturday, Sept. 14 marks the inaugural Top Dawg Cornhole Tournament at Heritage Park. “Cornhole” sounded slightly suspicious, if not pornographic, to me and, being a Midwesterner from the land of corn, something that I should’ve already know about. For those of you not in the know, it has nothing to do with corn or pornography. It’s basically a bean bag board toss game – but with plenty of fun, say-what? terminology like “hammer,” “dirty bag,” and “nothing but hole.” Warm ups are 8:30-9:30 a.m. and bags fly at 10 a.m. It’s B.Y.O.B., which includes bags, boards, and beer. There are cash prizes for the top four teams in all divisions, live music, and vendors selling equipment for those of us not already properly equipped. I’m nothing less than intrigued, and this sounds way better than horseshoes. Visit PlayCornHole.Org for more of the game’s ins and outs. Also on Sept. 14, down at the Yavapai County Courthouse Square, you’ll find some folks celebrating the 10th anniversary of Prescott Recovery Day with inspirational speakers, information booths, and free food. I was under the impression that every day is Happy Recovery Day here in Prescott. We’re listed as one of the top 10 Sober Living Cities in the U.S. on TheFix.Com (right up there with Boston and New York City), which highlights the “dozens of sober-living recovery facilities, halfway houses, and

  • [Video] Alan Dean Foster talks Star Wars, Star Trek, & Hollywood

    Apr 26, 13 • ndemarino • 5enses, Event, Video20 CommentsRead More »

    On Sunday, 2013-04-21, Prescott-based science fiction legend and flagship 5enses columnist Alan Dean Foster talked about “Splinter of the Mind’s Eye” as part of the Prescott Film Festival’s Sci-Fi Mini-Fest at Yavapai College in Prescott, Ariz. Watch his talk and Q-and-A, in five parts, bellow

Celebrating art and science in Greater Prescott.

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