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Feb 11th
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Wine and Waves

blog beat333zzzzOn the heels of Santa Cruz being named the fifth most artistic city in the United States by The Atlantic, local artists are displaying their work to the public this weekend. Among them is Maia Negre, a 30-year-old painter and surfer who has lived in Santa Cruz for the past 13 years.

Her work will be on display at the Ron Blitzer Gallery as part of the Oceans of Art show beginning this Friday, Dec. 2. The opening takes place from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and will feature a range of artwork from 27 local surfer-artists. On Saturday, Dec. 3, Negre will have her own art show opening at Cava Wine Bar in Capitola from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The showing, titled “Waves and Wine,” will be on display through the end of the month.

Negre has had considerable accomplishments despite her young age. She has been a professional painter since she was just 22 years old. When she was 23, her painting “Kat and Katie” was featured as the official poster artwork for the 2006 Women on Waves Longboard Surf Festival.

Negre moved to Santa Cruz when she was 17 and the city’s culture quickly had an effect on her. Though she had never considered herself a painter before, she began taking art classes at Cabrillo shortly after her arrival. Once she began painting, she knew she had found her niche.

“I just fell in love with it,” says Negre. “I knew that this is what I should be doing.”

In addition to taking art classes at Cabrillo, Negre began surfing when she moved to Santa Cruz. Her love of surfing, coupled with her years of experience swimming, has deeply influenced her painting career.

“Being a surfer has given me a lot of perspective as to how to the ocean works and its rhythms and the way it affects people,” she says. “It’s always been truly inspiring to me.”

Negre’s artwork largely focuses on oceans and beaches, making Santa Cruz an ideal location to establish her career.

“There’s just so much to be inspired by here,” she says. “It’s just such an incredible place to be an artist.”

Despite her fondness for the water, Negre isn’t confined to ocean scenes. More recently, she’s taken to painting landscapes, especially vineyards and wineries. But even when she’s working with wine, her experience with the ocean helps to enrich her work.

“I have a series of paintings that are wine-related, but they’re also very fluid,” says Negre. “They depict wine in glasses, but there’s a lot of movement so they’re all very fluid.”

For information about Maia Negre and her upcoming shows, visit maianegre.com.

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

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