Meet Laverne

Born in 1925 in Milwaukee. Mother dies when she was 4. Father dies when she was 13. Raised her younger sister, Shirley.

Played center field for the Milwaukee women’s baseball team during WWII. 300 bowler. Amazing golfer. JC Penny’s first female computer engineer.

“I’m 84 years old and had a great life. My girlfriends are sitting on the couch crying over regrets, watching the news and waiting to die. I lived without regrets. I tried everything I wanted to do.”

Her husband Leo in a sidebar conversation smiled and said: “I grew up in family owned bar and bowling alley in Thorpe. It took me 13 years to finally out-bowl her.”

 

Artstreet Art Fair in Green Bay, August 22 – 24

Come see me in Booth 198.

Next weekend I will be at the Artstreet art fair in Green Bay. This is a wonderful opportunity to catch some great art and a meal. Hopefully, you can make it. I will be in Booth 198.

Also, if you are going to be in the area please stop and eat at the Mustardseed Cafe. The family have been wonderful patrons of my work but more importantly I had one of the best breakfasts anywhere EVER at their restaurant in Green Bay.

Art View: I Get Around

I get around. No. Seriously. I do.

This year we are doing about twenty-five shows between April and October from Texas to Michigan and up and down the Mississippi River Valley. Because of all the getting around we do, this year we began a project to video document the artists and people that we meet around us. The videos are far from professional, but like my friends, I prefer to think of them as authentic. The result is that you will get to meet some really wonderful people and fantastic artists that you may not know are out there.

At least that is the hope. You get to decide. Where possible we will include links to their websites, Facebook pages and their other social media.

You can see more about this endeavor on my Vintage Painter Youtube channel.

 

Powderhorn Art Fair in Minneapolis

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First of all, next year, there is no way we are doing an art show every weekend between April and September. NO WAY! We are exhausted.

I’m sorry we haven’t been able to post much this year. Not even pictures but with only five shows left this season I wanted to make a moment and let you know of one close to home in Minneapolis.

The Powderhorn Art Fair is this weekend. Of the three major art shows in Minneapolis this weekend – Uptown, Loring Park and Powderhorn, I like the cool grassy, tree-lined park overlooking the lake of Powderhorn best.

Especially if it is as hot as they are predicting this weekend.

I will be in Booth 102 overlooking the lake and, hopefully, under a tree. Come see me.

Cheers,

Chrissy

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Wisconsin residents are the country’s most extroverted. Really?

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One of my bohemian friends in Levering, MI.

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Traveling Germany by rail, 1989.

So I travel. A lot.

I’m blessed to be able to live a bit of the bohemian life style so I participate in art shows all over the country. Some of the events are high-end museum shows while others are rocking music festivals or community events. As such, I meet an enormous cross section of Americans.

It is always interesting what sells from one show to the next. I may go to 10 shows and no one looks at a particular original or print and then in one show sell a half dozen in a weekend.

You just never know.

What is more fascinating to us is how people react when you say “hello.” At some shows a “hello” will run people out of the booth – they don’t want to talk to anyone. In other regions, if you give them space they think you are ignoring them.

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My bohemian friend, Michael. Also, in Michigan. That is weird.

And don’t even get me started on how different parts of the country perceive the art of negotiation. We won’t get into that here.

Which is why I find this article so interesting. It tries to quantify and qualify the “mood” of a state.

I thought you might find it interesting. Take the quiz and see if your mood matches your state. Check out how your state stacks up against the rest of the country by clicking here.

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Albuquerque Adventures: The Lost Art of Neon

Hot Neon

New painting: Hot Neon. The original is in a gallery in Michigan. Canvas prints can be ordered through my website. Click here to order paper or canvas prints.

As we had an appointment in Nob Hill to meet with the Mariposa Gallery we decided to drive part of the historic Route 66.

It was my partner that spotted something shiny and he asked “do you mind if we stop here?” There was some neon in the window and a sign outside the door that said “Neon Art Gallery”.

We knocked at the locked door and waited for an answer. Peering into the darkened windows of the gallery, we patiently called the phone number on the window.

A few minutes later as we stood gazing and awkwardly pointing at the beautiful neon in the windows a man came to the front and let us in. This is how we met the local historian, certified electrician and neon artist Robert Randazzo, the owner and sole proprietor of Absolutely Neon.

He was born and raised from a Sicilian family in Brooklyn, New York. He learned how to work as a young boy helping his family around their bakery and as he matured decided to study as an electrical apprentice.

Thank goodness for anyone that appreciates neon.

He earned his chops working on neon up and down New York City’s famed Times Square in the 70s and 80s.

He has resided in Albuquerque for 27 years and repairs, designs, installs and maintains neon work all over the country. Over the years Robert has tried to bring in new artists excited about learning the lost art of neon but had a hard time finding anyone that has the same kind of interest or “fire” within to continue on creating the beautiful lit up “works of art”.

It turns out “Absolutely Neon” is a museum of sorts showcasing Robert’s work and 30 year history of creating neon art. He gave us a full tour and talked about his life making neon and all the interesting projects he had been involved in over the years. Much of the neon you see in and around Albuquerque was installed or maintained by Robert.

If you are in Albuquerque and want to meet a unique individual that uses the pragmatic process of combining glass, gas and electricity to create something artistically mesmerizing and powerful be sure to go to Nob Hill and tap on the windows.

Robert and his work is worth the time.

Here is a video clip from Roberts web site highlighting neon along Route 66.