Santa Cruz Good Times

Nov 25th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

The Exhibitionist

ane_bernsteinartFLUID LINES Eva Bernstein’s “Estuary” is a knowing portrait of a place and season.Rich Harvest at Pajaro Valley Gallery

Landscapes lushly compose themselves of fog and sedge and water while an ocean hides beyond the trees. Irrigated fields march in all directions in bold grids while bees make their way through dramatic clouds. A perky crop of houses erupts on a hillside; birds stalk and stare and rise in flight everywhere and a pantheon of noble vegetables pose for their close-ups. “A Harvest of Images: Pajaro Valley Impressions by the MPC Printmakers” at Pajaro Valley Arts Council Gallery serves up that promised harvest in 100 fine art prints by 48 artists in an exhibition curated by painter Howard Ikemoto.

The humble appearance of the PVAC gallery is all part of the act of the quietly essential powerhouse hidden within a converted bungalow on a residential street in Watsonville. PVAC uses the homey feeling to relax viewers into a receptive relationship with the art, then in room after tiny room builds a story around powerful social or educational themes.

“Harvest” exhibits nearly every technique of fine art printmaking including variations on woodblock, intaglio, lithography, silkscreen and mixed media.  Accompanied by an informative booklet, “Harvest” serves as an excellent primer on printmaking. The story the exhibit tells of the Valley, however, is curiously detached.

The few humans portrayed are turned away, faces hidden, seen as shadows behind curtains or as patterns on a distant field. A rare prominent figure is the subject of Bob Rocco’s masterful linocut, “Strawberry Fields,” a large, fluid, nearly monochromatic image of a laborer walking away through a horizon-less expanse of fields. In Rocco’s “Early Morning, Strawberry Fields” a team of workers bend over the crop, becoming simply a texture. The most intimate human is “Farmer Juan,” a warm, charming monotype by Wendy Moore, tightly framing a man digging in the garden, face hidden under a wide-brimmed hat.

Lynne Simpson’s eerie “Undocumented,” a shadow seen behind a curtain of agricultural netting, may hold an answer to this consistent turning away; or Yvonne Gorman’s “In Sight Out of Mind I” and “II” with spidery-faint workers patterning the foreground.  In fact the most intimate portraits in “Harvest” are both of owls: Pamela Takigawa’s riveting “Brujo,” recalling the deceptive simplicity and emotive power of a Morris Graves, or a breathtaking “Owl and Trees” by Mary Warshaw, all dynamic lines spiraling around the face of this night creature.  No boundaries effect such views of the natural world of Pajaro Valley.

“A Harvest of Images” continues through April 17 with a reception March 13. See details at

Maureen Davidson writes about the arts in her column, “The Exhibitionist.” This column and her radio spot and blog at are funded in part by a grant from the Cultural Council of Santa Cruz County.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger


Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share


Santa Cruz Gives

A look at the organizations we’re asking you to support in our new holiday giving campaign


Simplicity Preparing for Thanksgiving

When we study and apply astrology in our daily lives, we are anchoring new Aquarian thinking. Study, application and use of astrology, understanding its language, builds the new world, the new culture and civilization. Astrologers are able to plan right timing and right action. Next week is Thanksgiving (Thursday, Nov. 26). It’s good to understand the energies influencing us in the days leading up to Thanksgiving. When we know these things we are able to make Right Choices, have Right Action. We link heaven and Earth, our minds with the starry energies that influence us. Let us consider the following influences. The North Node (point in space where sun and moon meet, representing humanity’s present/future pathway) has just entered Virgo. Virgo is about food, purity, cleanliness, service, detail, order and organization. What can we learn from this? Because these energies are available to us we, too, can have intentions and a rhythm of order and organization, purity and cleanliness. Sunday, the sun enters Sag, joining Mercury (we have high ideals, many goals). Tuesday, Mercury/Saturn (structured disciplined thinking) squares Neptune (thoughts, ideas, goals dissolve away). Wednesday is 3 degree Sagittarius solar festival (full moon). Sag’s keynote is, “We see a goal, we achieve that goal, and then we see another.” We might have many plans and goals for Thanksgiving. However, on Thanksgiving those goals may be dashed. Saturn (structure) squares Neptune. All structures and plans dissolve and fall away. What is our response to this? We simplify all that we do. We plan on everything changing. We don’t fret. We adapt instead. Adaptation is the behavior of the Disciple. Sagittarius is the sign of the Disciple. 


The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program


Film, Times & Events: Week of November 20

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments


If you could be someone else for one month, who would it be?

President Obama, so I could change a lot of laws that pertain to people in jail for drug possession and other minor crimes. Raouf Ben Farhat, Petaluma, Self-Employed



Blanc De Blanc Sparkling Wine is best shared with the one you love


Rainy Refuge

Kelly’s offers killer sliders and pumpkin pie, plus dining pet peeves and wine of the week


If you won the lottery, what would be the first three things you did?

Build a restaurant, buy a house for my mom and donate a quarter of the money to the Boys and Girls Club. Jevon Martin, Santa Cruz, Chef