Friday, April 29, 2011

Flowers from Virginia

I was so surprised to see a beautiful bouquet delivered to me on Monday.  Welcome home from my trip to Washington DC....Happy Easter....and to remember my friend Jim.  Of course, the very thoughtful sender was my dear friend Virginia.  The flowers are truly lovely--a large arrangement with gerbera daisies, carnations, hydrangras, tulips, phlox, purple stock, snapdragons and set off by trailing eucalyptus.  As usual, Virginia hit all the right notes in making me feel good and timing it beautifully.  My friends Celeste, Carrie, and Katherine sketched at my house with me on Tuesday and found the bouquet a great inspiration.  Results can be seen at  I am also working on a bigger painting of the bouquet, but it is taking second place on my work schedule behind a painting to be put up at O'Connor's next Tuesday.  It is too risky to post it now.  It may totally flop but so far,so good.  I hope to post it soon...whether it is a"flop" or not!!!

Carolyn Rondthaler, owner, Plum Gallery 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Jim Gronsand Virtual Show (Posthumous)

For the first time, the Plum Gallery hosts a virtual one-person show, featuring the art of Jim Gronsand.

In Memorium
March 29, 1942 - April 6, 2011

10" x 10"

Not Ourobos
36" x 36" 

Fall, or Sometimes in Front of Every Cloud There's A Silver Lining
36" x 36"

42" x 42"

Chief Joseph of the Nez  Perce
84" x 54"
Collection, University of Oregon
Law School

Monday, April 11, 2011

Final on mural project

The mural I was working on is finished, and I feel a wonderful sense of accomplishment.  It is in Room 201A of the Buchan Center at First Unitarian Church, Portland, Oregon.

Tragically, Jim Gronsand, who was working at the same time on a mural in the next room, died suddenly last Wednesday.  He had been having problems with his heart, but it didn't seem to be something that couldn't be treated.  He fainted at home on Sunday and went to the hospital.  I talked to him Monday and he said he would get a pacemaker Tuesday and be home Wednesday.  He was going to help me set up for the art show at the church, so said he'd call then and let me know if his doctor said he was up to it.  He was getting ready to leave the hospital Wednesday when he collapsed and couldn't be revived.  Even his doctor doesn't understand why he died.  The memorial service will be tomorrow.  Here's a picture of Jim and the mural he was working on:

And another picture that shows more, but not all of his mural, but doesn't show him very well:

The white strips were for marking grids.  You can see his working image taped on. To the left of that is an isolation template so he could work on a specific sqare at a time.  The moon is in the upper right.

Although we were quite different as artists, we became very good friends.  I will miss him.  Jim's mural was not finished according to his plan.  Those of us working with him decided no-one else should paint on it, though, and it will stand as it is...with grid chalk marks where he put them, but not the white strips.  I will get a full picture of the "final" and post it later.  Jim was a supporter of the work of the Carolyn Rondthaler and the Plum Gallery.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Fine Arts and Craft Show

The First Unitarian Church Arts and Crafts Show was a big success for me.  I don't know how much I made, but I sold a big painting and several small ones and  cards.  I had many friends stop by, and I loved that.  This is a picture of me and Celeste in front of my display, which was dependent on her grids.  It was I good show, and I made lots of good connections....and new friends for the Plum Gallery and for me.  I am so glad I did it, but I missed my friend Jim who died Wednesday.  He was going to help me set up on  Thursday and was a good promoter of what I am doing,  It was totally unexpected, so it was especially hard.  Life is fragile--hug your loved ones.  And make whatever art is first in your heart. One good thing is that he recently completed three new major paintings aobut the cycle of life.  Who knew? 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Hip 2 B Square

I took this piece in for a show in Hillsboro at the Sequoia Gallery.  It should be a fun show.  All of the paintings, including mine, are 12" x 12."  The Sequoia Gallery is at 136 SE Third, right in cental Hillsboro.  The show will be up through the month of April.

For the show, I had to do the painting on a canvas that I got in March from the Sequoia.  I treated the canvas with Golden Absorbant Ground so that I could use gouache.  After the painting was finished, I varnished it with a matte varnish.  The canvas is a gallery wrap, and participating artists were to submit the work without a frame.  To finish it, I used black acrylic on the edges.  I'll use this process again.  I like the way the gouache works on the treated canvas.

The subject matter was influenced by Gregory Kondos, an artist from Northern California.  His landscapes are of the scenes I grew up with.  This painting is titled, "River Trees."  I priced it at $125.  The Plum Gallery supports Sequoia Gallery!

Monday, April 4, 2011

First Unitarian Church Fine Arts and Crafts Show

This coming weekend, The Plum Gallery will go "on the road" to the Fine Arts and Crafts show at First Unitarian Church in downtown Portland.  I'll have lots of paintings, "shrinkwraps," and cards there.  The Patron's Reception is Friday 7-9 pm.  Although it costs $25, it includes wine and appetizers and benefits the church Arts and Music programs.  Plus, first chance to buy the art and jewelry and other crafts.  The show is open Saturday for free 10 am to 6:30 pm.  A concert will be at 7 pm.  Sunday is also free, and will be from 10 am- 2pm.  This is the first time I have participated.  Thirty percent of everything sold goes to the church.