This is a Super-Selfie piece about a particular type of heartache: the shame and self-loathing that comes with having put up with too much for too long, a poor investment in a shift that would have never come, and never will.
This piece actually transitioned me from one state of mind to another, from victim to warrior… pain filed under lesson, emergence of a more informed self, the inevitable strengthening from what didn’t kill me. I found this Selfie-Superheroine buried inside me and dusted her off. Together we decided to leave it all behind and explore the world together.
Apparently Jellyfish are an epidemic! Because the piece struck a chord and is being shown in both San Diego and San Francisco in the following two shows:
Sexism: A Touchy Subject, 2015 Arc Gallery, San Francisco
STRIP: Caricatures, Satire and The Funnies, 2015 The Studio Door, San Diego
This Friday night’s opening in San Diego corresponds with ComicCon, and I can’t wait to meet the other artists and comics enthusiasts. And I will get to see some dear friends!
In San Francisco the climate will be very different, having been juried by the South Bay Area Women’s Caucus for Art. What an honor!
I am completely humbled to have been selected by judges who represent such a broad spectrum of human interests!
This collection is my very first foray into oils, both practice and passion. They are portraits of a vintage underbelly: originators, envelope-pushers, society’s fringe… fearless entertainers pressing against the boundaries of society’s puritanical views.
I’m having a tough time staying present because Thursday I’m off to Santa Fe and Taos with my Mom. It is her maiden voyage and I have faith in that she will be completely overtaken in splendor.
My first item of business is a prickly-pear margarita at The Shed, the magenta-colored one I’ve been thinking about since my last trip in 2013. And the stuffed tempura-fried squash blossoms at La Fonda.
And then… nothing but good art! I have a pile of artists’ cards from last time and I’m really excited to see some again. And there are new artists I’ve discovered through social media… and a whole week to adventure without commitments!
I had a great time at the opening of “Field of Vision” and the Red Brick Center for the Arts in Aspen last Thursday. A great big thank-you to my friends and family who came to support me and my work, and to the curator, Angie Callen, for including me in a selection of very diverse and talented artists of all media. Thank you to the Board of Directors for your esteemed dedication to the Arts.
I met some really wonderful people and reconnected with a few familiar faces. It’s so lovely to show in Aspen, the town where I spent half my youth.
I have eleven pieces in the show, all images from the summer of 2013 in the Basalt Community Garden. There, at dawn’s break, is where I formed a relationship with the life cycle of the flower and its beautiful ebb and flow of three seasons.
Here I am with ex-Aspen Sheriff Bob Braudis.
The new Aspen Sheriff, Joe DiSalvo, is no stuffed shirt either.
My brother, Seth Berley, with his squeeze, Erika.
Catching up with Stascha and Stefan Kaelin, lifelong friends of Dad.
My Mom was in town for the celebration.
Curator Angie Callen is awesome.
With the Daughters of the American Revolution, I handed out Christmas gifts to the war veterans at the Home for the Heroes in Los Angeles. Most of these men had no living family or friends. Many were unable to speak. Even more were unable to move from their chairs or beds. Some were very happy, and rejoiced in our good company, while the sadness of others could be deeply interpreted in the silence. Antiseptic and incapacity filled the hallways with clinical doom, accommodations sparse and scarcely individual. Outbursts, involuntary movements, and blank stares left a haunted me longing to feel more, to question, to comprehend. Volunteers chirped: “Merry Christmas and thank you for your service!” But I, a mere child on this day, struggled to muster cheer, questions swirling behind incredulous eyes that stung from tears I’d willed into remission. Behind silent blank stares were powerful beings whose outer simply could not deliver the inner wellspring of life, history, and the extraordinary. “Heroes.” Not an unfamiliar term for me. Two post-9/11 years of media relations lent various allusions and tributes to our heroes maybe 50,000 times in my workflow, yet this was another reality to examine. Celebrating our heroes is the very least one could have done, or could ever do. What celebration is there for the soul imprisoned by war evermore, the life force caught in a vessel that cannot express its vitality beneath the casing? Where is the victory in man without family, friends, or voice to share what little joy not eradicated by post traumatic stress, physical pain, or confinement. This is the prize of a hero: a soul imprisoned in a lifeless body, a mind cursed with only the past to relate to… a hopeless state where present and future have no ground to lay a track of possibility and hope. There is no greater Hell than one whose life is limited to the past, and yet, this is the lifetime sentence for a war hero. “Thank you for your service…” to whom? Who are they serving in a war that will never be over for them, because there is nowhere to go moving forward? For what must nations fight? How archaic is weaponry in the name of religion, commodities, and nationalistic pride? For whom is this service rendered?