March 25, 2022 Weekly Musings

Christine Alfery

Posted on March 25 2022

March 25, 2022 Weekly Musings


Ringmaster's Coat Accepted Into 2022 NWWS Waterworks Unlimited Membership Exhibition 

Ringmaster's Coat Accepted Into 2022 NWWS Waterworks Unlimited Membership Exhibition

I'm honored that my work, "Ringmaster's Coat" has been accepted into the  2022 NWWS Waterworks Unlimited Membership Exhibition.

"Ringmaster's Coat" was one of the 60 to be selected by Juror Mike Hernandez in this prestigious exhibition. This members- only exhibition had 177 member artists submitting 362 total paintings, from 8 countries and 23 states.

Online exhibition:

Starts April 28, 2022


"First Store Bought Dress" in Upcoming Exhibition

"First Store Bought Dress" in Upcoming Exhibition

I'm honored that my painting, "First Store Bought Dress," also know as "Blue Dress" has been accepted into the Illinois Watercolor Society 38th National Exhibition 2022 by juror, Michael Ireland. 

Online Exhibition

Starts May 28, 2021


Peace Plant Accepted Into Culture & Agriculture 2022 Exhibition

Peace Plant Accepted Into Culture & Agriculture 2022 Exhibition


Peace Plant has been accepted into the Culture & Agriculture 2022 Juried Exhibition. This exhibition is one of the most popular and well-attended exhibitions in its’ 36-year history at New Visions Gallery.

New Visions Gallery
1000 N Oak Ave
Marshfield, WI

Exhibit dates: May 16-July 29, 2022




 Wired Creatively

Featured image: Changed II

Science labels and defines just about everything. Everything. Science is not afraid of changing a label if it no longer fits. When I ask myself, "Just where do our creative thoughts and imaginings, and concepts and ideas come from?" The answer is always from the mind, the brain. Have you ever looked at how science has labeled the brain? Here is a simple example:

I have been reading about the mind/brain lately – mainly because I really do want to know where our creativity comes from. I have been reading about the recent neuroscience studies and they are really fascinating.
When I was in college it used to be a joke that all artists were right-brain oriented and that is where creativity came from. I can remember debates about the newly imagined and that it could only happen if your mind was a blank slate. Artists believed that they could create that state of mind. I posted in a post a couple of days ago that Cezanne felt that way, for Pete's sake, I felt that way. I honestly thought that God would send me messages and that I was only a vessel for these messages and everything I painted came from Him. I believed that He had a purpose for my work and He was filling my vessel. I no longer believe that. Yet, I know and read about many artists who do. Mind you, I still believe I am a message for God's words but there is nothing special about what I do and His words come from the Bible and what I read. It is these readings that in turn inspire me.

I believe creativity and skill and our perception of our self, grows and changes simply by using our minds. So, is it true that all artists are right brain dominant? Is that where our creativity comes from?

When I went online to look for the book that surfaced about "right brain" and "left brain" from when I was in undergrad school, I came across some amazing sayings and posters. All of them were talking about the right brain and left brain. One book by Ransom Stephens, emphasizing neuroscience was titled “The Left Brain Speaks, The Right Brain Laughs.” I love that one.

I will be writing about the mind/brain in the next few posts. Other than what I said earlier about where I think creativity comes from, I can see that the answer is not so simple and I am fascinated, including the dominance of one side over the other when it comes to the creation of self, and the soul, spirit. I am saying to myself, "No wonder I believe the middle is not grey." So, I will leave you here with some posters I saw on Amazon with the right, left brain illustrated. Quite lovely some of them. Not art – but quite lovely.


Every Once In Awhile

Every Once In Awhile

Featured image: How Do I Get There?

I don’t know about you, but I get a lot of junk mail. Today the draw was: "Just in: WALL ART." Yup, I opened it, just to confirm every once in a while, my fears that we are a McDonalds Happy Meal culture, and not a fine dining out for the evening culture where wine is sipped and slowly enjoyed, with enough time during the meal to actually chew our food. Art for under $50.00, art for under $20.00 and a little competitive edge for some, art with the signage under the art “recently purchased.” The first two I have seen before and have become numb to. Every time I ask myself," Why would an artist even try to compete with that?" But the “recently purchased” tag? Well, 1172 pieces were sold of one and 385 of another, and the list went on. Why????? This is McDonald's happy meal marketing, with a prize inside – something that matches your sofa.

Every once in a while I have to remind myself – and all of you that read my posts, "Please support a real artist." Your art does not have to match you sofa. Think for yourself. Don’t let another think for you.


The Art Historian's Postmodernism

The Art Historians Postmodernism

Featured image: She Is Called Peace

I am going to write for the next several posts about the post modern in art history.  Since approximate 1960 and the artist DuChamp the art arena has been filled with de valuing the meaning behind art and removing the artist self from the definitions.  The artist creativity is being written out of how art can be understood. 

In looking for the next stand out movement to write about in the art history books, many art historians have latched on to the concept of a postmodern movement.  And, they have defined that postmodern movement as different from modernism, mainly though collective designs and collaborations of an art work. They have taken the notion of the individual out of the work of art and replaced it with the collective group of artists that created the work.  I say, “Fine. Yet the work still needs to be unique, one-of-a-kind, and is never to be repeated.” But what this collective, collaborative concept of group art has morphed into appears like this. Do we all agree this is a good cause to create a visual work about? They all have to agree. In my personal opinion, the work becomes a poster for some political ideology and immediately loses it’s uniqueness and one-of-a-kindness.  To date, I have not seen a work that is a collective that can stand alone as a work of art and not a collective ideal. Mind you, collective visual ideals are great to illustrate but they are a visual history and a documentary, not a work of art.


Conceptualism Part I

Featured image: Going Home IV

Since the 60’s I have been challenged by the question “What Is Art?” There have been many theories and movements associated with the idea of what art is and during my lifetime I have been influenced by many of them. But there is one concept that has been associated with art that I have not been able to see differently. Mainly because I believe in it. That theory/concept began with the Impressionists and how they shifted the way that artists painted. Their brush strokes were short and quick “impressions” of what they saw when they painted outside on the spot, en plein air. Artists were no longer confined to painting in a studio and from their sketches. The Impressionists shifted the discussion of the reality of an object from objective realism to a subjective realism, subject to how the artist saw the work.

This discussion in art and the entrance of an artist's subjectivity into the work remained until the 1960’s. Artist Marcel Duchamp, shifted again, the theories surround art and what art is. DuChamp changed the discussion as to what art is to conceptualism. Duchamp defined art as an idea, a concept and not necessarily an object. If there was an object to exemplify the idea, the concept of the artist, it was generally already made. Ready Made, was a term Duchamp used to discuss the objects he, or conceptual artists like him, chose to represent their idea, their concept of the artist. These objects were generally everyday objects that did not require the artist's hand only the artist's mind. The “ready made” objects were devoid of style, and personalization. They had no emotion and were indifferent to the idea, the concept of the artist. Duchamp challenged the idea that the artist needed to create a new and unique original object to represent and idea, a concept. The idea or concept was all there was to art. The object an artist created enslaved the artist and the artist's ideas. The art object was not important. Duchamp changed how art was to be represented from a subjectively charged object of the Impressionists to a more conceptual objective object of the Conceptualist. Often the objects chosen to represent the creative idea of the artist, would be filled with irony and humor. The artist's sensitivities were removed from the theoretical discussions as to what art is and what it was going to be. The artist's creative process was removed from how art was understood. There needed to be no object included in how art was understood.

This shift changed how art could be understood and what art was. This shift removed the creative subjective object that the artist created to a more objective idea that the artist had. This shift literally removed the independence, uniqueness, and individuality of the artist and the visual language that they used when they created their object. This shift also changed how art was to be governed, or controlled away from the artist, their ideas, their process into the arena of objectivity, where the object that represented an idea, wasn’t important, because it tied the artist down, and restricted the artist's freedom.

The beauty of an object created by an artist no longer was part of the definition of what art was. Rather, art was idea or concept. If indeed the idea became an object, the object could be found in everyday things and would be used to exemplify the idea. Duchamp’s theory of art embodied the concept of freedom. Art was freedom. Art should never be subjected to any kind of government. Art should not be governed. Art should never be imprisoned or enslaved to anything. The art should be emancipated from what it is as an object. In DuChamp's conceptualism, the artist was needed for the idea. Beyond that, the theory of art should not be tied down to anything including the art object. If DuChamp's theory remained as he defined it, as the idea, the concept of the artist then perhaps


New Works:

Setting Sail




Yellow Finch III




Tiger Bird




Networking Bluebird


Ms Marigold


Goofy Little Bird


Florida Bluebird


All That Jazz Robin


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