Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Exhibit: Henry McAlevy

It's very difficult not to smile back at this painting

 Henry monitors a figure drawing workshop and has often shown in our group shows, like the Gold Medal Exhibit.  This is his first  solo exhibit at the Palette and Chisel.

Friday, July 13, 2018

1001 Train Rides in Chicago

Perhaps you recognize the graphic style of this book cover -
it belongs to Leonid Osseny
who can often be found
in our drawing workshops
and who exhibits here regularly.

(perhaps you remember his scale model of Lenin's tomb)

I could tell a few train stories myself.
Once upon a time ---- 
someone sitting behind me on the Red Line
 set my long blond hair on fire!

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Too many open workshop cancellations

First, let me say that I’m a relatively new Palette and Chisel member and one of the main reasons I joined is for the open studio time.

The number of advertised (and yes it is often promoted as “Palette and Chisel has over 60 hours of open studios a week!”) open studio hours is the primary reason for my membership and my guess is that’s true for many members. It’s through the open studios that we meet and interact with each other. It’s in this environment that we learn from, receive inspiration (perhaps even give it), make friends, and practice our art.

Palette and Chisel offers classes and workshops as well and I’ve taken several classes in the short time that I’ve been here. Classes don’t require membership though and being a member does not affect the price of the classes members take.

Recent workshop announcements, however, have made it appear that our leadership values the experience of workshop attendees above those of its members. The workshops almost always use the third floor studio and cause either the displacement or cancellation of open studio sessions.

A summary of open studio cancellations from the beginning of April through June 10th shows that 60 hours of open studio will have been cancelled during that time frame in favor of workshops.

A few days ago, an email announced that there will be a 4 week long workshop by Clayton Beck that will cause displacement, studio time decreases, and/or cancellations of open studio for a month. Being new, I was shocked and dismayed. I’ve grown accustomed to attending open studio on a regular schedule and I’ve been looking forward to attending during the summer where I don’t have to freeze on my way to  the building.

As I said, I was dismayed when I saw the email announcement. I couldn’t understand why Palette and Chisel would schedule something so disruptive to not only my schedule, but for the schedules of all the members who are regular attendees of the studio. When I looked at the website and realized that Clayton is not simply a member, but a member of the board, it looked suspicious. First, let me say I have nothing against Clayton. But it certainly appeared to me that the reason this workshop was allowed to be scheduled was due to Clayton’s role on the board. I contacted Bill by email and he replied that this had nothing to do with it. That may be the case, but there’s a saying that “Perception is reality”. This basically means that if you are perceived to be something, you might as well be it because that's the truth in people's minds.

In other words, although the board may not intend that the decision to schedule Clayton’s four week workshop interfering with open studio is due to his position on the board, the perception, at least in my eyes, is that that’s the reason, so it’s true.

After emailing with Bill regarding the Clayton workshop, it appears that a number of open studios will be moved and shortened during that time frame (messing up everyone’s accustomed schedule) with a net loss of 9 open studio hours per week.

This workshop issue got me thinking…

Does Palette and Chisel survey its members to find out what’s important to them? If not, I believe it’s important for it to do this on a regular basis. The survey results should then be used by the board to guide decisions.

Some possible questions on the survey:

● Do you agree with the decision to cancel, rearrange and shorten open studio sessions to accommodate workshops?
● Are there currently any issues with existing open studio sessions?
● What would you do to improve open studio sessions?
● What amenities would you like to see that currently don’t exist?
● What types of shows would you like to see in the galleries that don’t currently occur?
● What (low cost) ideas do you have to increase the usefulness of Palette and Chisel for its members.
● Would you prefer that Palette and Chisel provision another space for workshops? One thought is to use some of the air rights money to install plumbing in the dining room so that the space could be dedicated to workshop use. This way more workshops could be scheduled and they would not interrupt open studio sessions.

We’re all members and I hope that all of our voices can be heard.

I’m interested to hear your thoughts on this subject. Either comment on this blog or send me email with the subject “Palette and Chisel” to haochang@gmail.com.



Thursday, June 07, 2018

Margot McMahon : Gwendolyn Brooks

Today's story in the Chicago Tribune announces the dedication of a statue of Gwendolyn Brooks in a Chicago park.

The sculptor is Margot McMahon who had a studio in the Palette and Chisel coach house about thirty years ago.

Coincidentally, there is also a statue of Brooks by another former Palette and Chisel member, Sarah Miller.  It was installed in the Harold Washington Library.

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Memorial Day 2018 Drawing Marathon

Photos by Del Hall

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Photographs of Famous People

In his long career, Del Hall  has photographed many famous people.



Pope John XXIII

and more recently 


As a professional photojournalist,
 it's been his job to document 
both the famous and the colorful.

I'm not sure how any of  us might qualify,
 but since he's got me in the top row, second from left,
who's complaining?

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Mary and Miguel at the Vanderpoel Museum

Mary Qian:  "Dayton Street" (portrait of Miguel Malagon)

A review of this show is posted here

Mary Qian: "Above"


Miguel Malagon: "Sax Player"