3rd Annual Heart of Hope
Suicide Prevention & Mental Health Awareness Art Show

Showing August 3 through September 10, 2021

Closing Reception on September 10 from 3-5pm

Heart of Hope Art Show Entry Form


due: July 30, 2021

AmadorArts issues a CALL-TO-ARTISTS to submit works honoring mental health challenges and celebrating hope and perseverance. Artists of all ages and modalities are encouraged to enter works into our gallery for this third annual community art exhibit that celebrates mental health and honors those living with mental health challenges. Due by July 30, 2021. This exhibit is open to artists of all kinds including (but not limited to): Visual, Music, Dance, Media, Theatre, Literary, and Industrial Arts.

As we move out of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever before for our community to unite around the healing impacts of The Arts. Suicide rates are high throughout rural United States. Amador County has between 2 and 16 suicides each year. Many local citizens of all ages are living with mental health challenges everyday. Heart of Hope is an opportunity for our community to connect and support our collective mental health through the nurturing impacts of all types of The Arts. According to one national study, 73 percent of people in the United States say the arts are a “positive experience in a troubled world.” Join us by being a part of this inspiring art show.

Heart of Hope is an opportunity for our community to connect and support our collective mental health through the nurturing impacts of all kinds of The Arts. This art show is produced in partnership with Amador County Department of Behavioral Health and Amador Suicide Prevention Coalition (“AmadorSPEAK”). The exhibit includes take-home resources for mental health and wellness and the reception on September 10th will include presentations from Department of Behavioral Health and AmadorSPEAK.


All pieces must be delivered, ready to display, to AmadorArts by the deadline. By the deadline, Artists must sign an entry form and may submit an artist bio and statement (max 50 words each). Exhibit fee: FREE. Artists may sell their pieces, with 10% of all art sales going to support AmadorArts exhibits and arts education.

For more information contact Meghan Joy O’Keefe at 209-256-8166, meghan.amadorarts@gmail.com.

Together we can persevere.

*Snacks for purchase. One complimentary glass of wine for donors.

Mental Health Resources

Network of Care for Behavioral Health – This website is a resource for individuals, families and agencies concerned with behavioral health. It provides information about behavioral health services, laws, and related news, as well as communication tools and other features. Regardless of where you begin your search for assistance with behavioral health issues, the Network of Care helps you find what you need – it helps ensure that there is “No Wrong Door” for those who need services. The Community Announcements is updated frequently.



Visual Art:


Alexandra Yakovleva

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Artist Bio: Alexandra Yakovleva was born and raised in Russia, in the seaport city Kaliningrad. Alexandra studied in Kaliningrad Art school from 1996 through 2001, with completing an additional year of Art Master Class in the same Art School. During the study in the art school Alexandra exhibited her work in Kaliningrad Art Gallery and Kaliningrad City Hall. In 2007 she moved to the United States and spent almost a decade in a gorgeous South Lake Tahoe until she moved to the City of Trees, Sacramento in 2016.

Alexandra primary works in oil medium. She uses oil painting as a language instrument to convey harmonical and peaceful ideas. She experiments with various styles to express what is on her mind. Her art aims to have a salutary effect on the viewer. The effect is reached by smooth brush strokes, palette knife applications, color choice, subjects and shapes. Her predominant style is a figurative abstract and surreal genre. Those genres are free from the traditional representation, which gives unconscious a full force to explore.

Artist Statement: “One love” is a painting that expresses a power of universal love, that make us mentally stronger. Love has the ability to unite us and give us the greatest hope. When we are loved and capable of love, we are resilient to hardships and obstacles in life. Going through life can be a challenging experience. Dealing with situations we can’t predict or control is inevitable part of human existence. Not all of us are mentally geared up for this. We break and suffer, loose hope and excitement. We see dull colors only. That is where love comes to help and heal, to gives us hope and perseverance. To lift our spirits up, to give up the helping help. Stay open for love and hope, give it generously and unconditionally. Experience one love.

Website: http://www.alexandrayakovleva.art


Alyssa Vargas

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Artist Bio: Alyssa Vargas is a visual artist from Pioneer, CA. She is the Program Coordinator at AmadorArts and the owner and artist behind Gecko Cave Designs, a niche apparel store on Etsy. Alyssa received her AA in Studio Art from Folsom Lake College in May of 2019, and is currently striving for her AS in Biology. Her focus is Herpetology, the study of reptiles and amphibians. She was honored to accept the Kingsley Merit Scholarship Award in 2019 and had her work displayed in a temporary show at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. Much of her art is based upon her love of nature and animals.

Artist Statement: EXCITING CHANGES
Exciting changes are now in store
One will be kind and not copy
They are perfect.

We will begin anew

Colored pencil and sharpie on newspaper.

This necklace is made of two labradorite cabochons, aura quartz crystal, polymer clay, pigment powder, and then sealed. It is strung on a 24 in. black braided cord necklace with a clasp in the back.

The red and orange flower represents love and warmth. I hope to convey a message of togetherness and growth. While the flower blooms, the petals disperse from one another, but they remain connected by one central point. Not one petal is the same. Some are small, some large, while others are slightly torn or misshapen. But no matter how different, they all belong to the same flower.

Website: http://www.alyssavargas.net


Ree McLaughlan Brown

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Artist Bio: Ree McLaughlin Brown created this work while sheltering in place. Her artwork evokes emotion, beautiful chaos and moving color.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts with a minor in Women Studies in ’76, and an MBA in ’92 from CSUS. Proud of her 37 years in the State of California as a program manager, the last 14 at the CalFire Academy.

Ree works out of her studio in rural Jackson. She paints with alcohol inks, encaustic wax, oil paint and cold wax, acrylic and mixed media.

Artist Statement: Comes and Goes – This mixed media art is about I-solation, change and hope. The art in separate sections are an allegory for isolation. Moving parts emanate change and hope. Feelings, thoughts and images come and go. Comes and Goes is a six-piece art encased in double-sided frames, which turn using gears.

Upheaval – A hectic world changes in an instant… pandemic, illness, death, abuse, suicide, families torn apart… and yet we have hope.

Website: https://www.reemclaughlanbrown.art/


Brenda Munguia

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Artist Bio: In my content, I have been using the human figure, facial expressions, text, and media images of movie posters. I have also been depicting the symptoms of moods from each disorder though color by using the psychological effect of color, and the simultaneous contrast of color. So the viewer can get a better understanding of the mood that is being felt throughout each disorder because people with mental illnesses have difficulty regulating their emotions. To accomplish this, I use mediums such as oil paint, acrylic, and gouache. For my paintings, I use traditional techniques and realistic rendering.

Ultimately, societal representations, true stories, western culture and historical context concerning people with mental illness in America is my focus. I have been influenced by artists Francisco Goya, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, and Vincent Van Gogh.

Artist Statement: My work represents different people; men, women, and children dealing with different mental illnesses. My context deals with the struggles of those living with a mental illness and their recovery stories. As well as the conflicts that are being faced in the public due to stereotypical media portrayals and the ideas of the mentally ill that have been around for centuries. Living with a mental illness is hard enough. This affects people who are mental ill because society doesn’t always represent or treat people with severe mental illness fairly. The ill become victimized due to their psychiatric labels. It is difficult for those with a mental disorder to face a world that misunderstands, devalues, and isolates them.

Through my artwork, I want to bring awareness to mental health issues because it’s a serious matter. Misrepresentational images of the mentally ill are painful and offensive. The stigma surrounding people with mental illnesses has created harm to those living with a mental illness and those developing an illness. These stereotypes are not new. In ancient Greek and Christian societies, people that were mentally ill were thought to be possessed by evil spirits. People that were mentally ill were adopted to numerous sever treatments as in starvation and beatings to drive out the demons. The Greeks saw the mentally ill as trained by evil and viewed madness to be a punishment by the gods. In the bible madness was seen as a godly punishment and Christians saw the mentally ill symptoms to be a possessed of the devil. Today media portrayals of people with mental illness as evil maintain the negative aura that has been long attached to mental illness.

The media and movie industry has inaccurately depicted those with a mental illness as dangerous and violent people, especially in horror and comedy genres. Society sees the ill with distrust, fear, and dislike. People with mental illnesses are people with disabilities who struggle day by day with their symptoms. To ignore the harmful media depiction of mental ill is to increase the suffering, rejection, stigma, humiliation, and confusion when afflicted with a mental illness. Mental illness stigma undermines recovery both by adding burden of secrecy and by isolating psychiatric patients from the needed social an emotional support. Stigmatization also undermines those who are developing a mental illness by discouraging treatment. Mental illness stigma leads to discrimination and reduces opportunities to those that are mentally ill. In my paintings, I have recently been working on diptychs that compare stereotypes from the media with realistic representations of mentally ill people.

Website: https://www.brendamunguia.org/


Marilyn McDanel

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Artist Bio: A native Californian, she spent her youth on the coast south of San Francisco, in her teen years the family moved to Alameda County. After marriage, family and the corporate world took her across the country to the East Coast. When she and her husband retired, having a fondness for the Sierra Foothills, they moved to Amador County.

In 1999, when she left the business world, she taught herself the art of woodworking (Wildlife Scenes scrolled into wood). In late 2004 she taught herself pine needle basket weaving. Her work has been exhibited throughout California, the Smithsonian, and she’s received numerous awards. Many of her baskets are in collections worldwide. One of those collections is on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Her baskets are reflective of her Native American heritage.

She enjoys traveling and sailing and has combined the two. While sailing she would create new baskets. Once the boat docked, she could be seen gathering unique pieces of wood, stone and other materials to incorporate into her baskets and her woodwork.

Artist Statement: Unbroken Friendship – The design is a traditional Cherokee design. The basket is coiled pine needles fully wrapped in raffia. The design represents people, each person being connected by unbroken friendship.

Pine Needle Basket – Original design and pattern, the basket is coiled pine needles tightly woven together with sinew. Multiple stitches created the unique weaving pattern.

Website: http://www.basketsbymarilyn.com/


Michael Johnson

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Artist Bio: Michael Johnson, Fine Woodworking and Crafts

Michael Johnson is an Amador County native, having attended both Ione Elementary and Ione High School. After nearly 30 years in Los Angeles, he has recently returned to his hometown to continue his woodworking and other artistic pursuits. Michael has been interested in furniture and woodworking from a young age. He further honed his fine carpentry skills though many years in the high-end residential building trades in L.A., learning various techniques from many fine crafts people. He began wood turning in 2004, producing unique bowls, cutting boards, utensils, and other decorative objects with rare woods. He regularly sold his work at the famous Hollywood Farmer’s Market, among other Southern California craft venues, and via private commissions. Michael is now drawing new inspiration from the Gold Country, creating one-of-a-kind pieces, often with local wood species.

Artist Statement: 3 handcrafted wood bowls:

Bowl 1 – 7″x6″ Wood

Bowl 2 – 11.5″x4.5″ Oak Wood

Bowl 3 – 10.5″x3.75″ Wood

Contact Michael Johnson for sales: mdj5700@gmail.com


Trevor Coopersmith

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Artist Bio: Trevor Coopersmith received a Bachelor’s in Art from the University of California Santa Barbara, and was recently accepted and withdrew from a Masters in Fine Art Program from the University of London, Goldsmiths after realizing the program was not sufficient towards his goals as an artist in the midst of COVID-19.

Throughout his artistic career, Trevor has exhibited at dozens of public art affairs, private exhibitions, internationally recognized institutions and sold to private collections across the globe.

Trevor also takes pride in his volunteer work for numerous nonprofits throughout southern California, accumulating hundreds of volunteer hours teaching art lessons to children, young adults, and adults with disabilities; alongside teaching special education students within his local school district. Trevor often finds the satisfaction of donating his work and sharing techniques more rewarding than paid commissioned pieces.

Social engagement is an emphasis within his painting and drawing practice, and this has led him to found the Urban Art Scholarship, where Trevor awards $350 to a student based on their art portfolio and essay on the contribution of art within the community.

“I envision a creative and collective future.” – Trevor Coopersmith

Artist Statement: A series of work based on time management, solitude, emptiness, fear, vulnerability and fragility.

Website: https://trevorcoopersmith.com/


Trixxie Smith

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Artist Bio: I’m a grateful servant of Almighty God and his son Jesus Christ.

Artist Statement: My epoxy resin heart art is dedicated to the memory of my beloved friend Shamus Peed who took his life October 2016. The pale purple heart contains a wild sweet pea flower he gave to me just before his death.

Website: N/A


Kari Uhlman

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Artist Bio: Mending the Soul Support Group Facilitator. Art Facilitator for Stand Up Placer. Studied general design at Consumnes River College, conveys peacefulness in acrylic paintings, artistic influence is the hand of God, His creation.

Artist Statement: Light – 11″x14″ acrylic painting inspired by Genesis 1:3. $50

Africa Inland Church – 11″x14″ acrylic painting inspired by a photograph I took while visiting out first Compassion International sponsored child in Kenya, Africa in 2019. The kids were fascinated by cell phones and loved having their photographs taken. They were quick to learn how to use the camera feature on phones. $90

Noah and Family – 8″x10″ acrylic painting. We all came from the same six people. $50


Sharon Rubenstein

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Artist Bio: I have been an artist since I was 10 years old but only recently in the past 30 years have I pursued art on a serious level. I am a published poet, crafter, amateur sketcher, jewelry designer and greeting card designer. I am grateful and fortunate that I have reached an age that I am able to devote myself to more art than when I was much younger. Thank you for your interest.

Artist Statement: 1. Prudent man agate wrapped in raw copper. $45

2. 1 star ruby wrapped in raw copper $45

3. 1 collage greeting card $5

4. 1 collage greeting card $5

Website: N/A


Cynthia Lee Kingsbury

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Artist Bio: I began therapy over the phone during the Coronavirus lockdown. My PTSD had gotten so bad that because of my anxiety, my blood pressure was alarmingly high. I have never had therapy before and really didn’t know what to expect, but I was desperate to have a better life.

My therapist, through her calm and encouraging words, walked me slowly through my issues, and I’m proud to say that our work together has given me back the joy, laughter and hope that I once had.

Artist Statement: I would like to dedicate this painting to my therapist Cherie Morton, whose patience and understanding, brought me to the place I am now where I can actually try painting for the 1st time, and submit it where the public can see it, without fear!

The fairy in the painting is my therapist from Amador County Behavioral Health, and I am the scared caterpillar that turns into the butterfly. I wanted to give thanks to my therapist by entering my rendition of our journey together.

Website: N/A


Tyx Pulskamp

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Artist Bio: Tyx is an artful soul. He creates with sounds, colors and communion. Bringing together thoughts, values, and action, Tyx seeks to infuse the art of spirit in all that he does.

Artist Statement: Crafted with love and intention, this piece is a self-led therapeutic journey using paper, ink & acrylic on a reclaimed canvas.

Website: N/A


Mary Pulskamp

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Artist Bio: Mary Pulskamp was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA and relocated to Amador County in 1975. Mary is mother to three amazing adults. After retiring from Amador County as a Behavioral Health Therapist, she along with her family created Rosebud’s Café in Jackson. Along with her family she farms in Jackson Valley and is active in the local community by way of ATCAA, Homeless Task Force and the rouge non-profit, Small Change for Big. Mary continues in private practices as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Jackson, California. It is through her own work and the work with numerous clients that she has developed an idea of the foundation from which HOPE can spring forth. This multi-media piece makes reference to various ideas that can foster a Heart of Hope. Namaste

Artist Statement: Multi Media – Latex, Acrylic, Paper, Ink

Website: N/A


Olivia Oddo

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Artist Bio: Olivia Oddo is a recent graduate of West Virginia University with a Master of Fine Arts in Painting, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Visual Art Therapy. She is also an alumnus of Washington & Jefferson College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Studio Art. Olivia currently resides in Prosperity, Pennsylvania in the United States. As a contemporary painter and mental health advocate who also occupies an interest in art therapy, she is in favor of free-interpretation of her work. For her, painting is a practice of deliberate imagery if included to best satisfy what she’s thinking about or feeling. Emotions however are not a deliberate form of manipulation, but are instead unconscious manifestations of the growing mind. Painting in bold color-specific layers and sporadic orders creates opacity, and makes the work exclaim its own presence in a gallery setting without objectifying the overall composition. Therefore, promoting her brain (as well as others) to form new ideas, associations, and emotional responses.

Artist Statement: Imagery may include various types of self-portraiture across a variety of emotional expressions, and vibrant geometric patterns serving therapeutic purposes as well as references to color psychology. Collectively these images provide a visual inwardness into the realm of mental health by creating a chronicle of the internal and external processes experienced by an individual, only to be alleviated by the act of artmaking. Through observing these works the audience may deliberate as to how academic art and therapeutic art co-function in order to convey a personal message across all environments harboring creative expression.

Website: N/A


Marleen Olive

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Artist Bio: I began drawing at an early age. School was difficult for me, and I learned many years later that I had dyslexia. Art was the one thing that I excel at and that in turn became my passion. After raising a family and remarrying, I had a chance to renew my passion for the arts, taking workshops from local and nationally known artists. I then began teaching and giving workshops for local art associations, which then lead to my becoming an Art Instructor at Southwestern Oregon Community College for 13 years. After my husband passed away I moved to this area.

I show at Gallery 10 in Sutter Creek and I am the current President of Amador County Artists Association, Board member of Amador County Arts Council.

Artist Statement: This painting represents the current Covid 19 pandemic we are in. It can feel like a jungle to those with mental health issues or those confined with an abuser. I want them to know there is help out there that they can turn to during this trying time. If you know anyone suffering please reach out to them to get the help they need. Let us help clear the jungle they are in.

Website: https://www.marleenothepainter.com/


Tory Carr

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Artist Bio: Self-taught artist, my mother drew beautifully and she taught me certain techniques in art. I have to say that I’m never as happy as when I’m doing artwork. I call it ‘in the zone’ and I love it. Now that I’m retired at 63 I’ve gone back to it and enjoying it every day.

Artist Statement: Since the show is titled, “Heart of Hope” and it’s been a stressful year for many we can fall into bad habits that keep us ‘chained’ to our darker thoughts, but this piece represents breaking those chains and it’s titled, “Hope”.

Website: N/A


Bonita Gill

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Artist Bio: I’ve always loved art from kindergarten forward. I still remember a teacher’s aide who would draw in chalk on the blackboard during lunch when there was bad weather.

I took as much art as possible at Chaffey High School in Ontario, CA, graduating in 1967. I attended a number of Junior [Community] Colleges and attended San Francisco State University, graduating in 1980. My emphasis was on printmaking and I studied lithography, mono-printing, experimental printmaking and art history.

After graduation, I studied painting at night classes, watercolor from James Torlakson, oil painting from Kim Mendenhall and many more. I have had too many wonderful teachers to mention them all here, but to them all, I say thank you.

Artist Statement: Blood of Viking Kings
watercolor and gouache painting by Bonita Gill
The Pirate/Vampire is dual natured on guard against things unreal that the mind often creates– far worse things than those that are actually happening. And this vampire does have teeth, but the pirate will fight back. It is a conundrum that they are contained in the same body.

Kiss With Forked Tongue
watercolor and gouache painting by Bonita Gill
This painting involves a flirtation or fascination with things dark if only in a corner of our minds. My Medusa represents this to me drawing one to things better left unsaid or done. She allows
compartmentalization and the acceptance of the untrue.

Website: N/A


Olivia Nash

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Artist Bio: Olivia is a self taught artist. She specializes in murals and theatrical set painting. Her struggles with mental illness brought her to paint smaller acrylic works to cope with symptoms of anxiety and depression. Olivia loves to explore physical bodies experiencing mental illness in her work.

Artist Statement: This series demonstrates bodies struggling with mental illness. These acrylics on canvas show how an illness that is often unseen can manifest physically in visceral ways.

Website: https://www.instagram.com/chasing_aislinn/


Kevin Nguyen

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Artist Bio: Kevin is an immigrant from Vietnam who served in the Marine Corps because he felt that he needed to give back to this country for providing his family the opportunity to start a new life. After the military, he received his B.A. in Film/Radio/Television at SJSU and realized he was passionate about visual arts, but still was unsure about what path his career would lead him to. During this COVID-19 pandemic, he decided to move to Amador County to follow his passion in visual arts.

Artist Statement: This art piece of the present NY without the Twin Towers serves as a reminder of how a terrible event had affected so many lives. For those who have forgotten about 9-11-01, please turn on the light on the shadow box (located on the bottom left). Instead of falling apart, Americans came together and helped each other in time where hope seems to be lost. Kevin hopes that with this artowork, it will bring Americans together once again during this pandemic to right through tough times as we have done so successfully before.

Website: https://www.heartbeat.studio/


Mountain Chickadee Creations (Trevor & Jessica Lapham)

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Artist Bio: After making projects for ourselves and family we decided to branch out to start over own small business.

Artist Statement: “Rorschach Test” – This 1st piece of driftwood found at Salt Springs Reservoir while kayaking. Cut in half and sanded we found it had great symmetry, and looked like an inkblot or Rorschach test. Some people see angle wings and others aren’t so sure. It’s encased in epoxy resin mixed with a black pigment.

“River Table” – Made from old growth cedar burned in a wildfire from the 1920’s. Found from a snag in our backyard. Table legs were made by us from steel from “Amador Steel” and powder coated a semi-gloss black. The wood was encased in a mold and poured with a blue pigmented epoxy for the river look.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/mountainchickadeecreations/


Kat Everitt

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Artist Bio: Honored to be the first Poet Laureate of Amador County, Fall 2018 – Fall 2020; Poet columnist for Amador/Calaveras Ledger Dispatch, with my ‘Rivers and Rhymes’ column of the ‘Roots’ section, since October 2016; Broadcaster at KQBM Blue Mountain Radio: Everywoman’s Hour – archiving Interviews of over 230 Women making a difference in communities in the Mother Lode; co-host of 290+ shows of Americana music, with Den McCue, on Down From The Mountain. Public Health RN; K/12 Teacher of Social Sciences and Performing Arts; occasional Artist; Woodworker; Master Gardener; Scuba Diver; Swimmer; Canoeist; Free-lance Writer; Singer; Mother of 3; Stepmom to 3; Gramma to 25; and GreatGramma to 6. My life is linked to Social Justice/Human/Civil Rights Advocacy; Collaboration; Inclusion; and most of all, to Community. Join Me!

Artist Statement: TANGLES is a Poem about Life’s…well…Tangled Ways…. how we need to find the courage to captain our own boats home to true harbor…

CLARITY is that poem about the moments I simply see more clearly that others…those moments change little it seems…but maybe…more than I have the clarity to see….

SOMETIMES LIVING is lyrics of living and life gone by and going by…so it is and so it goes!

HEALIN’ SONG is more than plain song lyrics…it’s my latest plea to this Earth for more days of True Health – I have had such a Good Life! yet…it’s been filled with great discomforts and illnesses…it’s exhausting! Still! a Very Lucky Life, indeed….

LIVING THROUGH STORM – LOVING RAIN is poem about the water paths with one I love….not much more to it than that…which is huge enough!….


Sandra Wagner

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Artist Bio: Sandra is a fiber artist and makes Fibric Art Plus, is a fabric hand dryer, surface designer, and designs wearable art… Fabric has been in her life as long as she can remember starting with doll clothes. It was a natural thing to go from sewing children and adult clothing to making wearable art and wall size fabric art. The hand dyeing process is an added bonus for a day of play. She is a past quilt shop owner and now teaches workshops in fabric art, one of a kind garment and fabric dyeing. She has taught private classes, at guilds and Houston International Quilt Festival.

She has shown nationally and internationally, in galleries and has pieces in private collections throughout the United States. Has designed a garment for the Bernina Runway Fashion Show which previewed at the International Quilt Festival in Houston, TX. Her garments, hand dyed batiks and fabric art pieces have been published in “On the Surface” by Wendy Hill, “Diamond Quilts and Beyond” by Jan Krentz, “Furoshiki Fabric Wraps” by the Pixeladies, “Blueline” and “Bernina of America “Fashion Imagination.” Sandra was won many awards over the years. She has been juried into 4 Studio Art Quilt Association (SAQA) Regional shows. For the past 9 years Sandra has been the curator for the annual 5 month gallery show “Artistry in Cloth” at the Shenandoah Vineyard in Plymouth, CA.

She is a member of Studio Arts Quilt Association, STASH Art Group, Art Focus Quilt Group, Sierra Gold Quilters Guild, Mendocino Art Center, AmadorArts Council, Amador County Artist Association, and International Quilt Association.

Living in the Sierra Nevada Mountain of Northern California she finds inspiration in the landscape and colors around her. Sandra shares her home with husband John and Sunny her Golden Retriever rescue girl.

Artist Statement: Made as part of a show of art quilts that showed a self-portrait on that day – I had a massive migraine that day and this is the way my head felt at that time. I have told friends that the only thing missing is the hammer pounding on the head.

Website: http://www.sandralwagner.com


Indigo Carlton

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Artist Bio: Tracy (Indigo) Carlton is a self-taught artist inspired by the depths of the personal and collective unconscious. Her path to becoming an artist was a circuitous one, with many false starts and a menacing lack of faith to in her ability that was eventually overcome, before finally taking root about 15 years ago. She works primarily with acrylic paints on canvas but more recently has delved into the world of altered books – taking old books destined for the landfill and giving them new life as works of art.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, she has a serious case of wanderlust. Having both worked in and traveled to many far flung places on this planet, she has called Amador County home for the past twenty years. She currently creates from her studio in Sutter Creek, but always has another adventure luring her to new places of inspiration.

Artist Statement: Tracy’s creative process is an intuitive one, a dance of emotions, experience, and ancient memories. Her paintings and creations provide a journey, an adventure, and the finished pieces are not a final ending place ~ they are just the beginning.

Each of her paintings develop from multiple layers of paint, with a depth of texture and color that reveal glimpses into the entire process from beginning to end. Often times nebulous figures emerge from these layers wishing to be given voice. While other paintings remain more abstract and resist definition, leaving the discovery of images and other worldly beings to each individual viewer.

This piece is a figurative abstract, of a heart but so much more. It is a map to discover oneself, others and the spirit of this beautiful world. It is our core, how we connect with others, and how we experience this physical existence. It is poetry, it is pain and suffering, it is love.

Website: http://www.facebook.com/tracycarltonart


Elizabeth Larson

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Artist Bio: Elizabeth Anne is a seventeen-year-old who has experienced mental health issues since childhood and has undergone years of psychological treatments.

Artist Statement: It took disordered eating, years of suicidal ideation, and almost 6 years of therapy to be treated for my ADHD. A young male assigned person would not have to go through nearly as many hurdles to get the proper ADHD treatment. I am privileged to be able to reach that severity and be able to get intensive treatment. Other young female assigned people will continue to suffer and blame themselves for the way their brain works. A vagina with the Roman numerals representing strength in the Rider-Waite tarot deck. Strength for all my fellow female assigned neurodivergent people.

Website: N/A


Cecelia Smith

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Artist Bio: A cute monster. Loves to paint. Do not be afraid.

Artist Statement: The Neon Pagoda – A pagoda stands tall as if reaching for the stars. A reminder to have a brighter outlook on life.

Energy Lines – I believe each of us has powerful energy and we share that energy with one another. Whether we come in contact with each other or not, we connect much like power lines…

Palms Under Sunset – I love seeing tall palm trees against beautiful sunsetting skies. Something about this scene makes it feel tropical but also dreamlike.

Website: N/A

Performing Art:


Slade Rivers

Artist Bio: I was born in California but moved to Beeville, TX when I was a kid. It was there that I learned a lot of Hank Williams’ songs which are the basis of the music that I still play. I’ve written about half of the material played by the SRB (Slade Rivers Band). My wife and I live in a log house that I built in Pioneer, CA. Life is good.

Artist Statement: Both recordings are Joe Bellamy (keys and synth) and me (guitars and vocal). My daughter who lives in Austin, TX wanted a piece of music for her vintage western wear website that was reminiscent of a “Spaghetti Western” so Joe and I came up with Spaghetti and Gunsmoke.

Website: https://sladeriversband.com/


John Covert

Artist Bio: Award winning visual and musical artist: Grand Prize Music City, Song Festival Nashville, Multi-finalist American Song Festival, Songs Featured on Network TV Shows for ABC, TNN, VH1, MTV, A&E and more.

Artist Statement: Photos, illustrations, original music. Contact by email for booking/sale inquiries: crystali2010@hotmail.com.

Website: https://crystalimageband.weebly.com/


Over the Edge (Band)

Artist Bio: Over the Edge was a seminal band in Amador County (Voted Best Band in Amador 2013, 2014, 2015) whose unique sound drove the original music format. Featuring Dave Holob on mandolin and electric violin, Joe Bellamy on bass, Adam Gottstein on guitar.

Artist Statement: This is an original composition called “The Shenandoah Suite” which pays tribute to the wine making region of our county and where our band got its most significant traction in the performance scene.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/Over-the-Edge-462038264152010/


Susan Preece

Artist Bio: Susan Preece is a retired kindergarten teacher who has always loved to sing and play guitar. She, along with her husband Marty Preece have, for the past few years enjoyed singing and playing at both the West Point and Jackson Open Mics.

Artist Statement: This is an original song by Susan Preece called “Where Do You Go?” Performed by Susan on vocals and guitar and originally recorded by Marty Preece, the recording was musically enhanced and mastered by John Covert. It was inspired by the recognition of human suffering during unexpected tragedies, and questions how people are able to cope with overwhelming loss and heartache. One answer is found in the kindness, empathy and outstretched hands of those we love.

“Amanda” – This is an original song performed by Susan Preece, written as a tribute to a young Canadian teen named Amanda Todd. In 2012, Amanda was a victim of online sexual exploitation and blackmail. Subsequently, after months of ongoing bullying by her classmates, she sadly took her own life. Her story can be found online for further detail. The inner struggle of today’s teenager is real, and it is up to their peers and adults in their lives to recognize when they need help.

Website: https://www.facebook.com/susanpreecemusic/


Bruce Langston

“Cinderella Midnight”


Artist Bio: I am a local guitar player – singer/songwriter and have lived in Amador County for over 10 years. During this time I have supported Open Mics, radio shows with my original tunes and played lead & rhythm guitar in several regional bands since moving from the Bay Area. I graduated from Cal State East Bay with a degree in Fine Art.

Artist Statement: Video performance of original song “Cinderella Midnight” written in 2020, performed by me.

MP3 of an original song “The Well” written in 2020, performed by me, and recorded & mixed in my home studio.

Website: https://www.reverbnation.com/brucelangston/songs


Geraldine Brennan

Artist Bio: Gerry has been singing + playing keyboards with bands, choirs, orchestras as well as in the studio for well over 50 years. Her most recent performance at Carnegie Hall in New York was a highlight of her career.

She is currently a member of local groups: JAG, Teal Wheels, Beau Rumpa, Mountain Melody & High Grade Jug Band. She was the vocal arranger for acapella groups “B Natural” and “Cherry Fizz” for 15 years & has recently arranged several songs for Mountain Melody. Her first recording was in 1969 on vinyl!

Artist Statement: Follow Your Heart (Brennan-Staedler) w/ vocal by Gerry Brennan & Teal Wheels – This is a song about listening to your heart and deciding not to follow the crowd or the moment’s pleasure, but to choose to Follow Your Heart.

Mayor of Monterey (Brennan) – This is an instrumental composition contemplating our inner voice & question our purpose here on earth. The music was inspired by the sound, movement and power of the ocean.

Website: N/A


Biljana Bojović

Artist Bio: Biljana Bojović came from the Balkans to the United States to study at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan and then completed her undergraduate studies at West Virginia University in Morgantown and graduate studies at Butler University in Indianapolis. She studied cello with Pande Tuntevski, Cassel Grubb, Crispin Campbell, William Skidmore, and William Grubb, music composition with John Beall, Frank Felice, and Michael Schelle, and music education under the mentorship of Penny Dimmick.

For many years she had a very active musical life as an educator, composer, and freelance cellist in the Indianapolis area and performed in many different venues as a soloist, and in chamber groups and orchestras. Biljana has participated in composition masterclasses with Goce Kolarovski, William Bolcom, Eric Ewazen, Seymour Barab, Elvis Costello, Paul Chihara, Elliott Schwartz, Bright Cheng, Stephen Gryc, and Evan Chambers. Her pieces have been performed at the Indianapolis State University Contemporary Music Festival, Illinois Modern Ensemble Concert Series, Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, Finger Lakes Chamber Music Festival, New York, at several of the Society of Composers, Inc. (SCI) conferences, at the International Double Reed Society Conference (2009), Birmingham, England, and at many other independent concerts and recitals.
Biljana’s works are written mostly for solo instruments and chamber groups, and often draw inspiration from Balkan folk and Orthodox church music. Biljana and her husband now live in California where she continues to play, teach, and write music, including music for children, and is a church cantor and choir director. She regularly performs at the Mother Lode Friends of Music concert series and is involved with the Amador County Arts Council.
*photo courtesy of Larry Angier

Artist Statement: Three Balkan Dances for solo piano (2003) by Biljana Bojović incorporates rhythmic, metric, and melodic ideas peculiar to Balkan folk music. No folk tunes of songs and dances are quoted but are rather used as an inspiration and a type of compositional frame. This recording is of the premiere of Three Balkan Dances performed by pianist Justin Cody.

Three Pieces for Trumpet in C and Piano (2006), with movements named: Catch, Dazed, and The Spin, is a set of short character pieces. This recording is of the premiere with Allen Miller on trumpet and Eugenio Urrutia-Borlando on piano.

Website: N/A




Para obtener información en español, comuníquese con Betzaida Arroyo al (916) 600-8874 o envíe un correo electrónico a betrivera18@gmail.com. Gracias.

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