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Raven Sawyer

Raven Sawyer

Wednesday, 27 July 2016 17:08

Preoccupation to Occupation

Sarina Brewer took her preoccupations with art and science as a child and made it her occupation as an adult. One can see and appreciate Sarina’s gift in her art of rogue taxidermy. This naturalist artist has been working and creating with animal remains for decades. She is deeply respectful of animals and nature. Spending much of her childhood outdoors, Brewer began collecting historical objects, became preoccupied with mythology, anomalies of nature and funerary rituals, including her own shrines created for the final resting places for dead sparrows and pet goldfish who were lavished with elaborate funerals upon their passing during her childhood. These interests were elemental in her art from an early age. In the years to follow, her preoccupations morphed into her occupation, that is now her present body of work.

Much skill, precision and sensitivity is involved in her pieces. They are created with honor, homage and appreciation. She is fascinated with the circle of life and intrigued with how different cultures honor their dead and deal with death. And I might add a touch of the chimerical.

Immortalizing loved ones (be they animals or humans) by preserving their remains or creating sentimental remembrances out of their body parts does not sit well with the majority of western society, yet such practices have been the norm in many cultures throughout history and still are to this day. From primitive cultures to the Victorian age and now in our contemporary society, this type of veneration still exists. She makes her point of the relativity of reverence.

Sarina deals with death, in what is considered by many, to be in an unconventional manner. She does not view a dead animal as disgusting or offensive. She feels that all creatures exhibit beauty in death as well as in life and breathes new life into them by creating them in her works of art.

Brewer uses only ethically procured animal materials. She is a strong proponent of wildlife conservation who also participates in wildlife rescue and rehabilitation. No animals are killed for the purpose of creating her art. All animal materials used in her work would have been discarded by others if she had not salvaged them. She utilizes legally collected roadkill, animals that died of natural causes, causalities of the pet trade, destroyed nuisance animals that are donated to her, and discarded livestock and wild game remnants.

She believes wasting any part of an animal is disrespectful to Mother Nature, so out of respect for the animal, Sarina adheres to a strict “waste not, want not” policy in her studio. Virtually every part of the animal is recycled in some manner.

Artist Sarina Brewer has carved out a unique niche for herself in the art world by the incorporating her formal art education with her passion for biology and the bizarre. We are so excited that her preoccupation led to her occupation.

At the present Sarina Brewers work is occupying a special place in our gallery. We are honored to have Brewer’s artistic pieces, as her fanciful composite beasts are sought after by discerning collectors from all over the world, including pieces residing at the Geneva Museum of Natural History in Switzerland and Oceanopolis Cultural Centre in Brittany France. She is considered one of the most preeminent and influential artists working within this genre.

Art can agree with you or disagree. It can be unquestionable or a subject of controversy. At Lovetts Gallery, a part of our mission is to expose, educate and arouse. We appreciate the artistic work of Sarina Brewer, the mastery and expertise that goes into her creations. We hope you see the beauty that we see in her work. Now that you understand Sarina and her artistic expressions better, you owe it to yourself to see it for yourself.


Note: Rogue Taxidermy: A genre of pop-surrealist art characterized by mixed media sculptures containing conventional taxidermy related materials used in an unconventional manner.

Raven Sawyer

Tuesday, 12 July 2016 17:06

I Have Enough Jewelry....

I have enough jewelry....said no one ever!

Jewelry is an expression of ourselves. We wear it on our bodies, which reflects the intimacy of its function. Not only does it touch or pierce our skin, it clings to us in many other ways. Emotionally and visually. The constituents of jewelry, taken from the earth, honed and crafted creatively by the artist, is a way of connecting us to the land and sea in as many unique ways as we are.

We could talk about the science of Metallurgy, Mineralogy, Petrology and Gemology, but that would be outside the boundaries of this article. Suffice it to say that expertise, experience and knowledge goes into the making of artistic jewelry pieces. And passion. An extremely important element. Let’s call it Passionology……because we can!

The jewelry artists that we represent at Lovetts Gallery have this Passionology of which I speak.

Annette Blazon debuted at the Fahrenheit Exhibition with earrings that related to the Fahrenheit 451 story. She creates in a style that is eclectic, off beat and funky. We are waiting for new pieces from her that she describes as taking her work to the next level in metals and stone. You will be the first to know when they arrive. Oh no, sorry …. you will be second to know. Crystal, our sweet and multi-faceted aficionado at Lovetts insists on being the first to open package arrivals here at the gallery. She will be excited to deliver the good news to you!

Sebastian Cilento has his foundation in Native American work that resonates in pulchritudinous and symbolism. He is traditional in silver and goldsmithing and turquoise. Bracelets, rings and cuff links are among his creations as well as his swell design here at Lovetts. His single and double row dome bracelets are fashioned after Navajo bracelets from the 1920’s. Sebastian sees the beauty, strength and elegance of stone, minerals, gemstones and sterling silver as the vehicle that allows his work to focus on the art of adornment.

Patrick and Patty Elliott are jewelers who specialize in opals from around parts of the world, like Australia, Ethiopia, Brazil and Mexico. Opals, gifts of nature, millions of years in the making, have incredible colors and patterns to them. The Elliott’s make stunning earrings and pendants and make a wonderful show of the beauty of Opals in the varied ways they have designed the settings in their pieces.

Sandy Greenfield has a preferred style of necklaces that are hand-crafted multi-stranded and strung with a variety of stone types within a single necklace. She uses precious and semi-precious stones with tribal and ethnic designs. She creates with metals, spiny oyster shell, African and Tibetan Trade beads and all shades of turquoise gems. You feel and see her energetic and artistic vibe.

Bruce and Darlene Hartman create one of a kind pieces that are heavily influenced by the organic beauty of nature and European design. They work with precious metals and hand-cut stones. They both interned with a master stone-setter in Idar Oberstein, which is the capital of Germany’s gemstone industry. You will find among their collection, necklaces, earrings, pendants and rings.

John Knotts draws his vision from the lake and rare rocks for his work. Pre-Contact Cherokee pottery designs motivate John’s current pieces, often worked from old silver coins or sheets of sterling silver worked with cold chisel. He enjoys the feel of something that looks like it might have been discovered in an archeological dig, the pirate feel of discovering treasure. Knotts is full of inspiration and adventure.

Noel Leicht is a contemporary jeweler who loves having an acetylene torch, hammers, saws, files and an anvil at her fingertips. She creates for wear and display in Bronze, Silver, Gold and Copper. All her pieces have a story, as she says, “It’s sort of like writing with metal”.

Jody Lyle has a fusion style. She creates necklaces, earrings, pendants and rings in Rosarita, Dendrite, Sapphire, Chalcedony, Lion’s Paw, Tiger Eye, Garnet, Jasper, Citrine, Wave Dolomite. She is interested in traditions and cultures. Early metallurgy has been pivotal in her passion for jewelry making. Jody has a sensual use of color and a passion for invention. Fusion, too, is the balance and enmeshing of herself with her work.

Wayne Muskett is a channel inlay artist and silversmith that loves to create his work with an array of bright stones of the earth in his jewelry as a reflection of the colorfulness of different peoples and cultures he has the joy of being surrounded by.

Kee Yazzie Jr, a master metalsmith with an affinity for applique work, cut out, mosaic and inlay. He uses the finest natural Turquoise, highest grade Coral and the best Gemstones. He is passionate in seeing that his contemporary jewelry is a pleasure for people to wear.

Steve Yellowhorse, a Native American jeweler who uses his own concepts, stamps and designs, and collects the best Turquoise available, also uses materials such as dinosaur bone, and diachroic glass. He has a “folded” signature style that is unique.

Stewart Yellowhorse, younger brother of Steve, leans gently towards the contemporary in his pieces. He is best known for his inlaid knives. From his Navajo heritage, he makes each piece with the thought of making them an heirloom to be enjoyed for years in the future.

Most of the jewelers I have just talked about also have vast backgrounds in sculpting. This skill and talent lends itself intriguingly to the designs, formations and quality of their work. The pieces of these jewelers are works of art……. that you get to wear!

We have pieces for men and women. All the jewelers we represent at Lovetts Gallery will custom create a work of art for you as well!

We practice Passionolgy at Lovetts Gallery!


Raven Sawyer

Wednesday, 06 July 2016 17:02

Newsletter | July 2016

Thank you! And thank you again!

Deep gratitude goes out to our collectors and artists for the success of the Fahrenheit Exhibition.

What makes an exhibit successful?

A lot of elements that come together. The key being "together". None of these things can work alone. It's an orchestration that is beautiful from the acts of collaboration it requires.

The artists: the hard work and creativity and talent they express, the challenges, the deadlines, the computer tasks and destination details. They come from all over the globe to bring you the results of their heart, hands and soul. Art is critical to every country and culture around the world. This wonderful and free expression is what we ultimately celebrated for the Fahrenheit show. With the numerous instruments of their various mediums, the artists perform the visual voice.

Chip Walter has stated for National Geographic, "The greatest innovation in the history of humankind was neither the stone tool nor the steel sword, but the invention of symbolic expression by the first artists." I would have to agree. Evolution. Yes, we are all a part of the process. The desire to speak visually occurs prehistorically. The pioneering artists went to much pain and effort to create, to securing elements from the earth to utilize for supplies such as pigments, binding medias, brushes and other tools. Cave dwellers reflected the depths and passion it takes to create. How awesome that the traits of passion, emotion, creative drive, storytelling and instinct of artists stands the test of time and humanity, not to meet extinction. The visual voice.

It's this truth that is the bedrock of the art world.

But...I digressed a bit. I was answering what makes an art exhibit successful, and so I shall continue....

Along with the artists, it involves:

The works of art: The work is the visual voice. It speaks the seen and unseen, it's feeling and emotions, it's experience and dreams, it provokes and it pacifies. Its voice can scream, it can whisper. It can create chaos it can create calm. The artist holds this power and releases it. They share it. The works of art in the Fahrenheit exhibition demonstrated the scope of creativity and ideas as individuals and as a group.

The collector: The ones who hear, see and respond to the visual voice. The collector appreciates, admires and connects in ways meaningful to their lives. Art collecting involves passion and the joy of pursuing that passion, making the collection they are assembling a reflection of their personality. The collector becomes their own curator for their space. Artists would not survive without collectors, the art lovers! Even our museums would be extremely small or non-existent, as most pieces are donated by art collectors. Collectors are valuable to keeping the art world alive for us all.

This is what makes a successful exhibition. When all of these key elements come together.

This labor of love comes from the artist and the collector. This labor of love also comes from us at Lovetts Gallery when we curate for the gallery and for our exhibitions. We do our best to see that art acquisition can be for anyone that desires to collect art pieces. We strive to be that octave of the voice that educates, guides, and provides. Art purchasing is personal. It is an adventure without an end. It is fundamentally an experience. It is also a part of history making and evolution. At Lovetts Gallery, we see our part as giving the artist, their work and you a place for experiencing your passion in an environment that is comfortable and professional. Hey! We love art too, so we understand how you feel!

Thank you to the artists and the collectors for playing such an important role in keeping art sustainable for our pleasure now and for others in the future!

Thank you to everyone for your dedication to the Fahrenheit Exhibition!

We found it a pleasure to burn! We hope you did too! Passion does that you know!

The Cauldron: A Beautiful Brew is our next exhibition scheduled for October 21 and 22, 2016.

We are all about "celebrating" with our shows and this exhibit is no different in that respect. What a wonderful facet in art. Art in and of itself is about reverence; honor and respect of our individuality and its expression.

The Cauldron will be a large and varied artist show with multiple mediums and genres. Lovetts Gallery strives to provide a wide range of interests to meet the desires of the individuality of our clients. We are proud of the artists we represent and the hard work and challenges they take on to participate in our gallery exhibitions. We are proud of our collectors for supporting the artists.

The Cauldron: A Beautiful Brew, will feature a parallel project, a solo exhibit, by Artist Sheri DeBow, titled "Ghost Stories From The Attic". Sheri will be presenting with 13 dolls, in German Polymer Clay, in her signature style with some surprises.

As you can see, this is a big event with lots of beauty, genius and fun!

I will reveal more details at my next letter!

Together...we will catch the spell that is....... The Cauldron: A Beautiful Brew!

Emotion. Engagement. Empowerment.


A special thank you to Anthony Waichulis and the Ani Art Academy and students for producing the video for the Fahrenheit Exhibition. It is an honor to receive their enthusiastic help and creative genius. Anthony is relentless, talented and generous in all he does.

A reminder: For the latest artist information and arrivals of new work, please check our gallery website and social media pages.

Sunday, 25 September 2016 16:58

Newsletter | August 2016

Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Our treasured art collectors, gentlefolk, lords and ladies, equitable elves, determined dwarfs, and hard-working hobbits, felicitous fairies and meritorious mermaids!

It hath been decreed that it is time for a proclamation about what’s new at Lovetts Gallery!

Our last blog entry posed the question, “Are you a Renaissance Man or Woman?”. (see blog) Thoughts along this thread, commands me to introduce to you a new artist, Michael Hayes, at Lovetts Gallery. Michael works in Representational form with oil on panel and colored pencil on toned paper and is a Renaissance Man in his art. The beautiful art work that Michael produces is emotionally impactful and hints at just enough of a story to elicit a personal narrative in the mind of the viewer. His fundamental influence will always be the Pre-Raphaelite and Neoclassical eras. Interestingly, these two styles are juxtaposing and complimentary. Pre-Raphaelite elements are sensual and mystically romantic, jewel toned palette’s, elegant figures, along with highly imaginative subjects and settings. The Neoclassic is serious, sternly heroic with a more somber color palette, embracing classic literature and history. The combination of these two movements and their artistic styles are eagerly expressed by Michael Hayes passion, imagination and talent. His other talent is his wit! He is an artist who has a humorous narrative about his artistic journey in life and how the twists and curves led him to the path that turned into a serious passion for creating his art!

Michael currently lives in California with his girlfriend, their dog and a continuous supply of foster kittens!

Verily I say, Lovetts Gallery is proud to have the work of artist Michael Hayes in our court!


Today, a vast amount of our time, energy and learning leans toward skills and practical applications concerning our means of employment and income in our quick paced ever advancing technological world. With creative time in short supply for inquiry, pursuit and reflection of art, we have limited ourselves to what it means to be human….to be a man or woman. By the expansion of our minds without words, art captures the emotions of the human experience.


He beckons us to explore along with him as he reveals those secrets corners of the human soul through his work. His goal is not to draw our attention by offering us obtrusive beauty, for he states there is too much of it around in these re-touched times we live in. Furthermore, Miroslav offers no consolation nor merciful deception of false purity on this voyage, but a reality and atmosphere that exists when the masks are removed. The darker sides of being, the deeper states of mind, the naked conscience.

It’s most befitting that Pecho would choose to express and prevail his talented work by bravura expression drawing, which oft times permeates into his painting. Bravura is a style that signifies virtuosity and painting passion. It is bold and fearless. It is daring or brilliance with a florid technical display. It is a dramatic mate to Miroslavs narratives.

Bravura is rooted in self-confidence that stands fast by having an intimacy with the subject matter and command of the painting medium. This discipline requires good composition design and a unified value/color relationship, yet, beautiful and artful in its abstract appearance. Pecho paints in oils and acrylics. In his paradigm of styles, he paints in ways that are representative of the backbone of the Renaissance.


The Renaissance followed the period in Europe known as the Middle Ages. It began in Italy during the 14th Century and reached its height in the 15th Century and in the 16th and 17th Centuries, it spread to the rest of Europe………..

And is still spreading…………….

I have presented two artists that are new to Lovetts Gallery as great examples of the enduring legacy of our living renaissance in the arts. All the artists we represent, participate in this continual rebirthing.

History is abundant with some of the greatest works of art. The cultural movements were so inspiring to artists, providing unprecedented freedoms of expression. Artists were allowed greater flexibility in what they were to produce and they took advantage of it by exploring new themes and techniques.

The Renaissance, the philosophy of enlightenment (1400-1600), heady as it sought concentration on science, empirical-based evidence, and employment of rational thought to propel towards understanding the mysteries of life. Artists names you may recognize are Donatello, Michelangelo, Botticelli, Raphael and Da Vinci to name a few.

The Baroque period (1600-1700) ushered in the flair with dramatic and grand expressions. Subjects of faith, life and death, passions and agonies were now being depicted with extravagance and intensity. Realistic elements of the physical, emotional and the psychological were now up close and personal. Artists like Caravaggio, Rembrandt and Rueben are some artists representing this period of art.

As you can see, by taking this whole time period together, the artists today have been given a wonderful blueprint to follow and a lesson to learn. Art comes from the head AND the heart. The whole person. An unprecedented freedom had occurred for humanity. And continues still.

I sincerely hope you make time to reflect on this powerful part of our human heritage. Art is the bearer of the fruits of men and women’s infinite creativity.

Be inspired….be moved along….in your own self-discovery that brings you closer to being your own Renaissance Man or Renaissance Woman!

Let the wonderful artists at Lovetts Gallery be your guide!

J.R.R. Tolkien says,” There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something!”


You will find it at Lovetts Gallery!

Gramercy! Parting is such sweet sorrow!

I will see you anon!

Wednesday, 07 September 2016 16:51

You have to create your life

"You have to create your life....You have to carve it like a sculpture" - William Shatner

“It’s in the morning for most of us. It’s that time, those few seconds when we’re coming out of sleep, but we’re not really awake yet. For those few seconds, we’re something more primitive than what we are about to become. We have just slept the sleep of our most distant ancestors, and something of them and their world still clings to us. For those few moments we are unformed, uncivilized. We are not the people we know as ourselves, but creatures more in tune with a tree than a keyboard. We are untitled, unnamed, natural, suspended between was and will be, the tadpole before the frog, the worm before the butterfly. We are for a few brief moments, anything and everything we could be. And then… and then---ah---we open our eyes and the day is before us…and we become ourselves.”

Jerry Spinelli

Lovetts Gallery is proud and grateful for the wood carvers we represent. These artists are certainly in tune to themselves and nature. Hollywood may make an actress prettier by the makeup and wardrobe they add to her, but the artist who works with wood brings out the beauty already there by what he removes, exposing the wonderful and individual details under its skin.

Working with wood requires tediousness, precision, patience, a clear vision and an ability to conform and adapt direction to be in harmony with each piece, as no two pieces are grained and veined exactly the same. The artist and wood must orchestrate together with flexibility and yet with great tension. The value of the woodcarver is apparent when you realize the intimacy that’s imparted from the artist into his wood pieces and to the collector.

Woodworking is one of the earliest art media’s. What an enchanting time in history when humans found art in wood, itself a grand endeavor. Wood is one of humankind’s most venerable natural resources. Looking at the primitive point in time, wood was essential as it was creatively utilized for fire-building, shelter, tools, sailing vessels, dishes, containers, musical instruments, masks, religious and architectural work. It still is today, in addition to things now, as paper, beautiful floors and furniture pieces, always splendidly useful. There isn’t any place that wood has not performed an exquisite, important and enriching part of our lives. But……. woodcarvers take it to the level of art. What a meaningful way to honor wood. Through the passion of the artist, they cause us to stop and take pause in our busy and most times, too hectic lives to reflect and appreciate the gift of wood.

Woodcarvings have withstood poorly the vicissitudes of time and climate in the past, causing many works of wood art unable to stand the test of time as bronze or stone works were able. But new innovations came, thanks to sealants and protective materials that will make a wood piece last indefinitely…………and the rest……….is history!

The special artists in wood at Lovetts Gallery are as follows:


Chad Awalt has a family legacy in the working of wood. With his academic background in Anatomy and Physiology, Chad starts a piece with a sculpture of a real life model to exact form and measurement to guide him on the size of log it will require. We have works of his in Cedar, Cherry, Ambrosia Maple and Box Elder. After the removal process and the sculpting is near its final form, it is kiln dried and then its on to sanding and finishing. A lot. To a highly polished surface to bring out the wood grain. Next step is hand tools, chisels and shapers. Occasionally, Awalt inlays gold leafing, adds color and or burned patterns on some pieces. They are truly works of art. (pssst…..Chad also does beautiful paintings in mixed media!)


Bill Evans has a before and after to his life. Before wood turning and after wood turning! That is how passionate this man feels about his art. Who could have known how poetic and life changing receiving a mini-lathe for Christmas from his wife would be. Bill particularly desires to work on large projects. He makes use of wood that he feels shows unique characteristics, like Elm Burl. He also adds carving and embellishments to some of his turned pieces. This artist loves to set challenges for himself in design and techniques and that shows in his art.


Ron Gerton employs an Art Nouveau style to his work as his favorite design for inspiration. The Bonsai plant, skillfully trained to defy nature and gravity, is a classic example and heavily influences his work. Ron finds it meaningful to implement elements of nature in his pieces and purpose in repurposing figures greatly in his creations. He casts his own bronzes which is in combination with some of his wood work. Gerton’s motto is, “Everything is a raw material for something else”. Going green, he uses industrial materials he finds. He does table and wall pieces.


Ken Hager found his love for wood turning after his retirement. I should say rather he found the “time” for his love of working with wood after retirement. Being very prolific in his creations and vast array of wood types he works from, it is clear to see how Ken is driven through his passion and imagination and skill. Burls, like Myrtle, Buckeye, Mesquite, Cherry, and Maple, Lace Bark Elm, Hackberry, Pecan, Ironwood, Cedar, and Australian Walnut are woods he uses. Some pieces have Lapis or Turquoise inlay. He has added Brass, Calcite, Jasper, Pearl, Rhodonite and Chalcedony to others as well as incorporating weaving. Truly works of art!


Arthur Lopez is new to Lovetts Gallery and we are anxiously waiting for his artistic pieces to arrive. So I am carving out some time to introduce you to him now. In his own words, “I try to capture with intentional ethical sensitivity and undaunted heart-felt commentary, modern religious, secular and political issues with humor and a breath of fresh air”. Lopez is a wood sculpture artist who uses traditional methods to create contemporary pieces. He says although a majority of his work is of the Saints, you don’t have to be of any particular religion to appreciate them as art. He chose this medium for expressing the full range of his culture and the world around him. Born and raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Lopez is proud to be working in the long tradition of New Mexico Santero artists; hand carved painted wood sculptures. Welcome Arthur!


James Bud Smith creates wood pieces with a distinctive style. Being Native American, coupled with the personal aspects of his life, emotions and experiences, James finds no other medium as fitting and necessary for himself as the art of wood carving. The hands-on tactile practice of this three dimensional art allows him as a Cherokee wood carver to push the boundaries with Native art forms. He may use Walnut, Cherry or Butternut wood; he may create an animal, mask or do a figurative. He has challenged taboos and strictures to some in the Native art world with his depictions of nudity in his figurative works. Smith says, “I work, see and feel with my hands, with the hope they will speak.” They do James and we see and hear!


James Vander Lind, produces turned works of art that include spindle turning, open and closed vessels. He works with domestic woods and exotic woods from all over the world. James also embellishes some of his pieces with inlays of rare woods and turquoise. Vander Linds goal as an artist in woodturning is to uncover the natural beauty that lies beneath the bark of a log and to create a shape that is both an artistic expression and pleasure to the eye. He uses a clear lacquer on nearly all of his work so the true natural color of the wood is highlighted. Beautiful pieces!


Chris Wilson creates a wide range of wildlife sculptures. His style moves from the abstract to the realistic. He specializes in waterfowl and songbirds for his subjects, as Chris is an avid birder and nature conservationist. Inspired by nature, he is particularly captivated by the beauty of birds and their ability to fly. His aim in sculpting is to capture these unique characteristics. With lots of detail, form, space, light, texture and color, Wilson works to illustrate a harmonious and thought provoking sculpture, whether in wood, stone, bronze or steel. In his “emerging series”, you see the partially formed bird as he is carved from the wood. “Emerging Quail” is in the gallery. Welcome to Chris, who is new to Lovetts Gallery!


As you can see, these are very talented, very passionate and very time honoring artists of wood! They all have multitudes of awards and distinguishments to their names and work, and with collectors of their pieces all around the world.

We are glad that when these artists are wide-eyed awake and become themselves, after those early first few moments from their slumber, when we are all creatures more in tune with the trees....that they are still creatures more in tune with the trees!

Louis Nizer said, “A man who works with his hands is a laborer; A man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; But a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist.

“Knock on wood” that you find the time to come in and see their beautiful work! Thomas Hardy spoke, “to dwellers in a wood, almost every tree has its voice as well as its feature”. I believe these artists have expressed both of these most honorably.


Raven Sawyer

Wednesday, 03 August 2016 16:47

Mona Lisa

She looks ……like I feel! Ha! Ha! Ha! Even the Mona Lisa has had those days! I get some weird solace in that today!

Actually, after I saw this “rendition” of this famous painting, it created a lot of questions about her in her traditional portrait, that I was sure I didn’t know. I’m a rather curious type, much like cats are known for, of course I wouldn’t take it to the point of getting killed, but hey I would enjoy some details!

It’s fairly well known fact that the picture was stolen and recovered, but the history between those two points really got me wondering. Little did I realize what I was embarking on when I started to research answers to satisfy my wondering mind. There is so much information out there that it was overwhelming. And then there is that job of parceling out the truth from fiction. There is so much to say on this most famous picture in the world that the scope of such an article is too vast for my blog. The least I feel I can do at this juncture is to invite you to take your own journey in researching the story of the theft of La Joconde for your own self pleasure and enlightenment. A mystery and drama that rocked the world of art, and people still talk about it today! Art is full of intrigue and emotion; Always about the lives of people…the artist, the collectors, the countries, the history and the future! (and an occasional thief!)

The history of the Renaissance, the Rebirth, the Enlightenment, was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14 th to the 17 th century, with its beginning in Italy in the late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. Its influence had effects on literature, philosophy, art, politics, science, religion and other avenues of intellectual inquiry.

During this period in time, there was an enormous renewal of interest in and study of classical antiquity. It was also an age of new discoveries.

The Renaissance may best be known for its artistic developments and contributions of such polymath’s as Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, who inspired the term “Renaissance Man”. Leonardo was a master of the arts, an engineer, an expert in anatomy as well as many other disciplines. He viewed the world with a curiosity about everything.

So, curiosity isn’t just for the cat. We should all be curious about everything! Naturally, an adventure of life this way will take us out of our comfort zones and challenge us to learn new disciplines. For example, some artists have only painted with one medium. By changing to a different paint application, say from watercolors to oils, they make a footprint into new exploration. Later, if they move farther out of their field of comfort, such as trying new subject matter or three dimensional work, they will not be able to return to their original medium as the same person as they were before their excursion. I am a ferocious book reader who had stayed within the same genre for years. I only would read non-fiction. I loved it. It was comfortable. It was a big leap for me to spring into the reading world of fiction. I reluctantly purchased a few books and told myself I could bear it as an experiment. Guess what? I went places in reading that I was unable to conceive. What I had assumed was already mountain experiences in reading, I realized had been events at a lower altitude. I had limited my experiences. The sky is my limit now and I read everything! But like the artist example above, when I got back to my first love in genre, I see it in a new way. Now it is all part of the whole.

The same principle applies with art as well. Being fortunate for exposure to diverse works of art my entire life, I have a tremendous appreciation for many types and styles that now lends itself to quite an eclectic and complimentary approach. I’m grateful to those who explore and experiment, the creative and curious people who seek and express themselves for our own education, edification and enjoyment.

Renaissance Man was a term first recorded in written English in the early 20 th century, but now it is used to refer to talented thinkers and doers living before, during, or after the Renaissance.

Capacity is always determined by stretching the limits. Hence, unless we push, we will not fully realize what our capacities are. How exciting to wake up and determine to make a Masterpiece of our time today. Tomorrow?…….…Is a new piece of work!

Are you a Renaissance Man or a Renaissance Woman?

The Renaissance hasn’t ceased. It continues, today, as new discoveries are constantly made. At Lovetts Gallery, the spirit and hand of beautiful and thought-provoking talent lives on………always in the stage of rebirth. Please come discover what is new in the gallery with us!

Michael C. Hayes - Red Sonja


Raven Sawyer

Wednesday, 31 August 2016 16:39

Slip on your time travel helmet

New artist to Lovetts Gallery, Natalie Wiseman, takes us down memory lane, mixed with our modern moments, adds a twist of irony, and paints for us a colorful and creative cocktail of life!

From a bustling and hectic home situated in Joplin, Missouri, there resides an artist who is highly energized, imaginative and talented. Married and a mother of three children, Natalie Wiseman lives a life that is always providing her with ideas and inspiration.

She possesses a very real enthusiasm for the work she does and one can tell that the creative wheels are always turning in her mind.

Painting with acrylics and oils on panel, Wiseman is a contemporary realist; other times a borderline surrealist still life painter. She states the line between the two gets blurred as images of toys, food, lingerie and American pop culture collide to reveal life that is anything but still. Did I mention she has a great sense of humor? So does her husband, Noel. After making the trip by car, with one of her works literally poking at the back of his neck the whole way, he arrived in great form and mood, as did her pieces. It was such a pleasure to meet them as lots of oohs and aahs were being breathed as Jack, Trent, Crystal and I viewed the pieces as they came in. Her husband looking forward to a much more comfortable drive home!

Natalie resourcefully utilizes the all-to-plentiful pieces of household debris to build playful yet complex lasagna-like compositions that are as much about revealing trains of thought and the creative process as they are about accurately representing the objects themselves.

There is a nostalgic impact as Wiseman incorporates pastime elements and ingredients that are current in our lifestyles today. I love the eclectic style in her subject matter as multiple dimensions are represented in time, space and narrative. Natalie credits marriage and motherhood, along with past experiences as a newspaper cartoonist, interior design project manager, mural painter and liquor store wine room manager to be significant influences in the evolution of her art and its themes.

Even the titles to Wiseman’s paintings show creativity by her play on words.

In her piece, “Princess and the Pea”, she mixes antiques and antics. Definitely some “monkey business” involved in this one! What kind of mischief on the mattresses is this? Can you find the pea? There is definitely more to this story…...!

Bacon, eggs, pancakes and pastries. Coffee and orange juice. Breakfast is ready, comes the call. “The invasion can wait”! Amid ray guns and robots, flying saucers and fried eggs, maple syrup and spacemen, the call of duty is to eat breakfast.

High suds on the high seas! When it’s time for me to wash the dishes, I would rather have to walk the plank than clean. But leave it to Natalie to add her special touch that turns a chore into an adventure. Bowls and boats, cups and colanders, water bubbles and wine glasses, mugs and muffin tins, pots, pyrex and pirates, all waiting to be a part of kitchen clean up.” Sink or Swim”, what a treasure and pleasure, this piece is! Shiver me timbers! You wash and I’ll dry!

“Keep Out of Reach of Children” and “Center of the Universe, as well as “No. We Can’t Elope”, are even more proof of the fun spirited and seriously executed talent of Natalie Wiseman.

Childhood pastimes…. playfully adult…. evidence that there remains a kid in all of us no matter the passage of time.

A humorous homage to humanity! Come and enjoy the world of Wiseman!


We are excited and proud to have the work of Natalie’s at Lovetts Gallery!

Raven Sawyer

Monday, 05 September 2016 16:35

Blazing Trails

Traveling with Lee Alban

Havre de Grace, Maryland is home to artist Lee Alban, who is an oil painter with a classical foundation in figure drawing, sculpture, anatomy, portraiture, and still life painting. By stretching canvases, applying glue sizing and lead primer, grinding pigments with black oil, and producing Maroger medium, Lee has continued a legacy that began in the 16th century. A graduate of the Shuler School of Fine Arts in Baltimore, Lee is a national and international award winning artist and instructor at his teaching studio.

He is also new to Lovetts Gallery!

Lee is skilled in every Realist genre, from Landscape and Still Life, to Portraiture and Trompe L’oeil, using traditional techniques to the achievement of contemporary results. He draws on nostalgic themes in creating work in series that have included steam trains, landscapes, vintage toys and landscapes.

His “American Heritage” series highlights industry and its production as a great American legacy, by bringing to life the monumental story of early oil exploration. From fields to boomtowns, from pastures to offshore, Alban richly portrays the history and hard work and of the rig workers, the derricks, the striking of oil and gushers; a story of determination and discovery.

Come and listen to my story about an artist named Lee,
An extremely talented artist who always keeps his passion free,
And then one day he was in a venerate mood,
And across his canvas, came a bubbling crude.
Oil that is, Black Gold, Texas Tea!

(Sorry!.....I couldn’t help myself!)

The “Silk and Steel” series depicts the hardworking women of industry in the 1940’s, beautifully combining the feminine and masculine elements in progress and productivity. Women in railroad settings, working on steam trains and a railway workshop, not only honors those who entered the work force during World War II, but reflects the skills and work ethic of contemporary females.

“Spirits of the American West” series weaves traditional landscape paintings of the American West with Trompe L’oeil renderings of vintage Native American photographs that are evocative of feelings of history and Native American heritage. His purpose in juxtaposing these two styles in one painting is to provide a powerful narrative. He painted modern western scenes and vintage “photos” of American Indians to look as though they were real photographs taped on top of a finished landscape painting. In this way, he “returned” Native Americans to their traditional lands in the modern landscape, positioning them in such a way that they seemed to belong in the scene.

In the” Americana” series one sees retro classic diners, iconic steam trains, vintage toys and landscapes and portraits to reflect the nostalgia of yesteryear.

Whether rural scenes and cityscapes to European sites or pastures and deserts or an intimate encounter with a purple Iris or cactus bloom, that’s the many places Alban creatively travels to……….and he will take you there too!

All Aboard!!


FYI: What is Maroger? Maroger medium is named for Jacques Maroger, chief conservateur/Laboratory Director at the Louvre in Paris before WWII, and president of the Restorers of France. As a trained chemist, he devoted his life to rediscovering the medium of the Old Masters, whose paintings had an inner glow and permanency of color. He arrived in the United States in 1939 and took a teaching position with the Maryland Institute College of Art. He was a dedicated art mentor and scientist and an important person in the legacy of the Schuler School of Fine Arts. The Maroger medium is taught by the Schuler School. The Maroger medium gives the paint an even and luxurious sheen, and over time, prevents the darkening of the painting. With his “secret formula”, Maroger claimed to have introduced to the modern day artist what the masters achieved centuries before in their paintings; as well as arguing that paint is of the freshest highest quality if it is hand-mixed. By those artists skilled in its application, they also know the secret is applying it sparingly. Along with this use approach for Lee Alban, artist Anthony Waichulis, also a former student at Maryland, likewise uses the Maroger medium.


This story has its critics and plenty of controversy. Yes, the world of art has drama! Archival quality, formulations and the advent of convenience have swirled around the legitimacy of the Maroger medium.

Always seek the unvarnished truth in all your pursuits. If you seek varnish, by all means, learn about Maroger medium. This medium is mastic varnish mixed with black oil. Mastic varnish is mastic crystals dissolved in turpentine. It is a thick yellow liquid. The mastic crystals are from the mastic tree sap, found on an island in Greece. They have been used for centuries.

FYI: According to, January 10th 1901, marked the day a drilling derrick at Spindletop Hill near Beaumont, Texas, produced an enormous gusher of crude oil, coating the landscape for hundreds of feet and signaling the advent of the American oil industry. The geyser was discovered at a depth of over 1,000 feet, flowed at an initial rate of approximately 100,000 barrels a day and took nine days to cap. Following the discovery, petroleum, which until that time had been used in the U.S. primarily as a lubricant and in kerosene for lamps, would become the main fuel source for new inventions such as cars and airplanes; coal-powered forms of transportation including ships and trains would also convert to the liquid fuel.


Crude oil, which became the world’s first trillion dollar industry, is a natural mix of hundreds of different hydrocarbon compounds trapped in underground rock. The hydrocarbons were formed millions of years ago when tiny aquatic plants and animals died and settled on the bottoms of ancient waterways, creating a thick layer of organic material. Sediment later covered this material, putting heat and pressure on it and transforming it into the petroleum that comes out of the ground today.


In the early 1890’s, Texas businessman and self-taught geologist, Patillo Higgins, became convinced there was a large pool of oil under a salt-dome formation south of Beaumont. He and several partners established the Gladys City Oil, Gas and Manufacturing Company and made several unsuccessful drilling attempts before Higgins left the company. In 1899, Higgins leased a tract of land at Spindletop to mining engineer Anthony Lucas. The Lucas gusher blew on January 10, 1901, and ushered in the liquid fuel age. Unfortunately for Higgins, he’d lost his ownership stake by that point.


Beaumont became a “black gold” boomtown, its population tripling in three months. The town filled up with oil workers, investors, and merchants. Within a year, there were more than 285 active wells at Spindletop and an estimated 500 oil and land companies operating in the area. Lee Alban’s canvased narrative…. with oil…. about oil….is definitely a wonderful rendering of a part of our American heritage.


!! EUREKA !!


Raven Sawyer

Friday, 26 January 2018 17:42

Newsletter | January 2018

Dear Diary,

And you. Yes, you too. Sorry Diary, I don’t keep secrets very well!

Here I sit at the typewriter…. reflecting. Okay, it is really a computer keyboard. (please just humor me) Today, I am reflecting on the past year at the gallery. For the record, I reflect all the time, so much so, so much reflecting, that I am like a mirror or maybe a shiny object or maybe it’s just a dysfunctional quirk, but for whatever reason, I caught myself looking for closure to this past year. Nothing too serious, just soft closure, like putting it in a feather bed and covering it with a soft blanket and a teddy bear for good measure. A little extrapolating. 2017 has been a weird mix of exhilaration and exhaustion! LOL* WTF* LOL …. And using words that begin with ex.

As for a bit of recapitulation, our three exhibitions for 2017 were RED/7, MIRROR MIRROR, and THE GOOD, THE BAD and THE WTF, and they all spoke to life through art by color, vices and virtues, reflection, reaction and theater, by observation and participation. Thank you to all the artists and their beautiful and hard work and to all of you who admire and support them and the arts.

With closure to one year and a looking expectantly to this new one, we are theming 2018 exhibitions, a “Year of Mystery”. Mystery involves discovery. Welcome to the mysteries of the imagination. Discover the perplexity and the simplistic, discover the secret and the open book, the conundrum and the clarity.

Welcome to a fantastic new year of art at Lovetts Gallery!

Obviously, we are an art gallery. But lest you think its only the “art” we cherish as important, you would be mistaken. It’s the people. It’s the wonderful men and women we get to know through what we do. That includes all the artist and clients. It includes the aspiring students and adults who come in and are inspired to grow in their own artistic talents as they look to their future, it includes those who come in to just visually admire and feel a respite in their day.

All these people have faces. We know many of their joys and struggles. They have shared their experiences of marriages, sickness, relocating a home, divorce, births and deaths, and their fears and expectations. Many of their very lives have been memorialized from the personal items that they have had framed. The stories they share when they come in with those things. Watching the excitement someone feels when they are sneaking in to buy a piece of art for someone they love, to surprise them. The friendships that continue even after their space is too full for more art. They all matter to us. We are fortunate to sell what inspires, personalizes and embellishes someone’s most important places and speaks in meaningful ways to them.

This past Christmas was a first for a Holiday Open House and we so enjoyed it! It will definitely be a new tradition here. Warm visitors, cold eggnog, and hot cider. It was festive, and we enjoyed the company of laughter! Thanks to everyone who came and made it a special day!

I’m excited to tell you that Lovetts has been shipping purchases all around the world and it is so cool to be connected to art lovers that way and enjoy a shared interest of art appreciation. We are in the process of creating new gift certificates that you will be proud to purchase and give for those you love, that they may choose their own art. We offer Layaway to be helpful and online shopping for your convenience. And always the most extensive and impressive collection of mouldings for professional custom framing.

Your first trip into the creative world of art for 2018 at Lovetts Gallery will be:

CLUE: The Exhibition

FEBRUARY 10th - 2pm to 5pm

Did you know:

The word “Clue” was originally a variant spelling of clew, meaning “ball of thread or yarn”. Our modern sense of clue, “guide to the solution of a mystery”, grows out of a motif in myth and folklore, the ball of thread that helps in finding one’s way out of a maze. Of these stories, the best known is the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. In the myth, Theseus unravels a ball of thread as he searches for the monstrous minotaur in the Labyrinth. After killing the minotaur, he retraces his steps out of the maze by rewinding the thread.

Alternatively, you could say…. minus monstrous minotaur’s and murder…. that we all in some aspect experience life in general this way. We have questions and curiosity, and we struggle for definition and understanding. We look for clues, through the maze, the labyrinth. We find wariness and wonderment along the way. Life is certainly a puzzle. Many refer to it as the winding road…... “the journey”.

Wind-Unwind……Wind-Unwind the thread. Today we say, Lather, Rinse, Repeat.  LOL!

Art is one of our companions as visual guideposts and a part of our wonderful odyssey through life. Art touches us intensely because it involves the creative spirit. It connects to our core through our senses. Art prevents us from being numb.

Please join us for an excellent art exhibition and let yourself be lifted by the original works of over 30 artists, who have produced by hand, from the mansions of their minds…...…to your eyes. Live painting will be taking place in the gallery by artists Jeff Hame, Timur Akhriev, David Shingler and James Johnson.

Mark your calendars for this special 3 hours only exhibition. You don’t want to miss this special afternoon in art! February 10th 2pm tp 5pm at Lovetts Fine Art Gallery.

We are unraveling mysteries and making discoveries!

The CLUE EXHIBITION is afoot!     



Wednesday, 05 October 2016 22:19

Newsletter | October 2016


It's the season of Fall at Lovetts Gallery which signifies our special Fall exhibition. This year it is The Cauldron: A beautiful Brew! This time of year lets us have a little extra fun. For pumpkins sake, it's a week before Halloween! The chill is in the air, and the thrill is in the show. Something wicked this way comes for the Cauldron.........something wickedly good! The artists have been feverishly stirring the pot in their studios producing their part of the Beautiful Brew. Nothing but tricks!

The imagination is fostered strongly at Lovetts. Imagination is the ability of the mind to be creative and resourceful. Charlie Chaplin said our imagination means nothing without the doing. Imagination is not the opposite of reality as some may think. It is an essential ingredient for contemplating and scrutinizing reality. It helps us problem solve, by being open to possibilities and considering other perspectives. It's the realm of ideas and the multiple choices to convey them. As you can see, art and imagination have a chemistry with each other. An alchemical relationship. When you combine a potent combination of talented, imaginative artists with their work for an exhibition at Lovetts Gallery....... you have a Cauldron of Beautiful Brew!


The Cauldron will feature new and creative works of 70 artists, converging in one place, at Lovetts Gallery, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but coming from all over the United States and many countries around the world. The artists are a mix of some we represent and are established with Lovetts and the addition of many new artists that have never shown here before. This "cauldron" contains two and three-dimensional art works of varied mediums and subject matter. We are happy to announce that several of the artists will be present at the exhibition. For some of the artists, these themed exhibits present opportunities to delve into something "outside the box", something different than what they may typically be "known" for. As it's been said, "nothing ventured, nothing gained". So we are happy to provide these opportunities to the artists. As always, there's and our goals are the same; to showcase our best efforts and talent, for the pleasure and enjoyment of you, the collector.

The Cauldron is also proud to present its parallel project, "Ghost Stories from the Attic". This is a solo show by artist Sheri DeBow. With a haunting number of sculptures, Sheri will be showing her magic in this special body of works! (Pun intended!) With her German Polymer Clay, paints, fabrics, adornments and sharp eye for fine detail she will cast a spell on you with pieces that are engaging, intuitive and demonstrative of the transience and mystery of life. These dolls, these ghostly and promethean treasures from the past will unveil the timelessness of time.

You won't want to miss the magical elixir of ideas and discoveries, a tonic of strength and beauty, the extract of highly regarded artists with their bewitching talent mixing together to create something new for the Cauldron: A Beautiful Brew Exhibition. Come and be a part of the artistic imagination at Lovetts Gallery!

Opening to the public

Saturday | October 22, 2016 | The Cauldron: A Beautiful Brew | 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.

"It's delightful when your imaginations come true, isn't it?"
(Anne of Green Gables)

A special thank you goes to artist Anthony Waichulis and his students at Ani Art Academies for the wonderful video work they did for the Cauldron exhibition. Their generosity, hard work and creative ideas are always an inspiration to us. They are a great example of what the "doing" part of the imagination is all about!

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