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ArtHop disappoints senior's expectations

The Fresno Arts Council sponsors ArtHop, an event which educates the community about the local arts. In this column, senior Stephan Melendez chronicles his once-a-month visits to ArtHop.

Christmas is the happiest time of the year, a time when families can get together and participate in fun activities drinking hot coco and bundled up in warm clothes. Local art studio, Gallery 25/, is one of the oldest and well known art galleries in Fresno. Featuring local artist, the theme for the month of December was “Winter Group” which includes paintings, drawings, photography, digital imagery, mixed media, and sculptures.

Excited for the venues first showing of the winter art of the month, I was disappointed with the dull welcoming and small crowd that attended. With more than a couple of ArtHop’s under my belt, the gallery was dead silent, the light undertone music that is usually played to help the atmosphere was not heard. Unfortunately the featured artist David Medley was not present to debut his art.

David Medely is a mixed media sculptor who primarily works with steel, wood, and other obscure object. Locally and internationally known, Medley’s pieces have been viewed in various museums and galleries. Not only does Medley produce numerous pieces for homes, but for offices and outdoor public spaces.

Only two sculptures were present at the gallery that Medley composed, I really wanted to get a feel for the sculptures and try to understand the various work. Instead, I was trying to contemplate other pieces like ‘Weird Weather’, that involved corn on fire and fabric hung from a hanger. I may not be thoroughly educated in art but I knew collections of art on the wall had nothing to due with the “Winter group” theme.

Even though Medley had only two sculptures present at Gallery 25, each sculpture was composed of unique materials which I appreciated because of it’s unusual features. Both sculptures portrayed materials such as metal cement and other construction materials which you would find in a neighborhood.

Both pieces of art displayed a hint of abstract because of their unconventional look allowing me to admire Medley’s works for a longer period of time. As both figures were a part of the same collection I admired the works more desirable; complimenting each other.

Two highlights of the gallery were the refreshments offered and an unconventional sculpture of a lobster tail. The 7up punch was chilled and relaxing, which heightened the experience of the gallery. A table filled with chocolate covered raisins, cheese and crackers, vegetables and dip, and cookies were also offered to the viewers; this is probably one of the largest selections of complimentary foods offered at an ArtHop.

The second highlight was the copper lobster tail placed in a jade bowl. I could quite understand the meaning behind the piece but I sure would like to buy it just to place in my office. One reason I liked this sculpture is because of my favorite type of food, seafood, the lobster tail really intrigued a couple of viewers along with myself.

The best part of the rave reviewed gallery was the local groups of musicians that play out side, but they did not attended the first showing of the “Winter Group”. The neighboring galleries were as dead as Gallery 25 which is surprising. The complex of the studio is quite spacious, I expected the inside to be filled with art but instead it was only placed on the fabricated white walls.

I will return to the next ArtHop, but hopefully the experience is more inviting and vivacious. The atmosphere of the gallery could be compared to a funeral. There was nothing up beat about the showing, although I do commend the different artist whose art was in the showroom; I have learned to take an interest in abstract art.

Gallery 25 is located on 660 Van Ness Avenue, Fresno, CA 93721. For directions visit Google Maps.

Even though the next ArtHop is Jan. 3, The Feather will resume, Jan. 7. Check back after next month for coverage on ArtHop, Feb. 7.

If you would like to attend the Jan. 3 ArtHop, check out the venues list for event listing.

For past coverage on ArtHop, read the Oct. 10 article, Artist ignites collection, senior analyzes contemporary art.

For more opinions, read the Nov. 27 article, Senior impressed with auto show, Central Valley displays variety of vehicles.

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