Monday, July 14, 2008

Sherry Markovitz - Exhibition - WOW!!!!

Morning Ewe by Sherry Markovitz
Ooooh, I'm still glowing from a happy reunion with beady friends and chance to see an amazing art exhibit this past weekend!

Sherry Markovitz, Remarkable Artist and Beader!

For starters, my long-time best friend, Liz, and I went to the Bellevue Art Museum to see a retrospective exhibit of work by artist, Sherry Markovitz. After spending an hour and a half seeing the exhibition, we joined Sherry in a walk through program. Way, way, way fabuloso!!!!

Looking at her beaded, life-sized animal heads, beaded dolls and paintings, I'm most drawn to the animals. Every one of them seems alive to me with all the presence and personality of a live animal, plus a most compelling inner calling or core message. Unlike other exhibits I've seen of Sherry's animals, this one has them mounted in a way that you can see them up close and personal -- put your ear right up to the animal's mouth, view it eye to eye and examine every little detail. The exhibition runs until September 7th. If it's possible for you to get to Bellevue, WA, this one is a 5 star ++++++++, don't-miss-it show... and the parking is FREE!

This time my favorite was Yellow Bear, with his quizzical expression. He kept calling me. I'd be looking at something else, even in a different room, and he would reach into my heart from afar, bringing me back to stand with him, the two of us together in a quiet haze of some deeply spiritual place. Thank you, Sherry, for that!

I'm sorry I didn't take my camera and don't even know if digital photography is allowed. So I don't have a picture of Yellow Bear. But there is one in Sherry's book, Shimmer, which is available through Amazon here or in the Museum gift shop. I found a few other images of her work on the web... you can see them below. Be warned... these images do not do justice to her work in any way! But if you click on the pictures to enlarge them, you can see the beading details much better than in the smaller versions.

My Mule by Sherry Markovitz
My Mule, above, was also one of my favorites, along with Copper Bear and two of her paintings, Rose and Big Donk.

Bow Wow Queen by Sherry Markovitz
Bear's Lair by Sherry Markovitz
Ikebana Bunny by Sherry Markovitz
Breasted Buddha by Sherry Markovitz
Puget Sound Bead Festival!

Next on the weekend's agenda was a whole, luscious day of shopping at the Puget Sound Bead Festival. This particular festival also gets 5+++++ stars from me. That's way more stars than I give any other bead and/or quilt festival.

It seems the organizers go miles beyond normal customer service to make the entire festival (classes, exhibits, shopping) easy and enjoyable for everyone. I'm not going into detail here about that, but if ever you'd like to come to the west coast, think bead festival - Tacoma, WA - July... it's the best!

For years and years, I've been teaching at the PSBF, with a full schedule of classes. Always in the past, I've had to squeeze in an hour or two of shopping here or there, between classes, after classes and during lunch breaks... always in a state of complete exhaustion. This year, oh pure joy, I decided to take a year off and not teach... can you believe SEVEN hours of non-stop, take-my-time-and-really-look shopping??? Seed beads, Thai silver, lots of lampwork beads, One-G thread, crystals, fab selection of pressed glass beads from Raven's Journey... ooooh, my bag was so heavy and full... like in the old days of trick-or-treating... ahhhh!

After shopping, I met with four fabulous bead buddies for dinner and beady show'n'tell. We talked and talked, remembering past gatherings, catching up on personal news, enjoying each other's company. Bead friends are such a blessing!

New Header for my Blog

As you can see, I finally got around to creating and uploading a beady header for this blog. About time, you say? Yup, you're right about that. Hope it's better late than never. Do you like it?

I'd been hoarding the lovely flower disc bead by Jenny Fiske-Baer for a long time. That's what got me going and turned the piece into a showcase for some of my favorite flower and leaf beads. The bird fetish, upper left, is by Zuni artist Rosita Kaamasee.

Next my plan is to use some Dupioni silk scraps I have in my stash and turn this piece into a small, quilted wall-hanging. Hopefully you'll see it soon.


  1. Well, you said it all. The silk fabric you used was even spelled correctly!

    I loved the animals. They look wonderful. I'm hoping to have some that speak to the good and not great when I do the "The Eyes Have It" for next years bead jounal.

    I'm glad you you had such a wonderful time at Puget Sound BF. Good for you.

  2. Looooove the new heading!

  3. Thanks for this post! I did not know about Sherry's work! I love the mule! :D

  4. Anonymous2:15 PM

    Bead art exhibition, bead shopping for seven hours at an obviously fantastic place, meeting beady friends - this can only have been a weekend trip to Bead Paradise!

    Best regards from Sabine

  5. Anonymous5:15 PM

    thank you for showing us Sherry Markovitz work. Kinda of daunting seeing talent like that but its something to aspire towards.

    I keep reading all about these great bead festival or shows,where you can source all sorts of inspirations but I never see anything like that in Austin. I must be looking in the wrong places. Still I have all these blogs and The Embroidery magazine to keep me going, Believe me until I got into blogging I really didn't know that such beautiful work existed.

  6. To Jacqui ~ Yes, Sherry's work is daunting on the one hand and totally inspirational on the other. At the exhibit, I found myself momentarily wondering "How can I call myself a bead artist?" Thank goodness that question passed, and was replaced with the thought that WE bead artists have certainly come along way in the 25 years I've been in it!!!! That includes you too, Jacqui!

  7. Anonymous9:00 PM

    thanks Robin for your reply and I would agree that Sherry's work is most definitely inspirational. Did you notice on the link to the Bellevue, that they have video where Sherry talks about her work. I loved the paintings they showed as well.

  8. I love your new heading. Very
    pretty !

  9. Sure glad I stopped by; I had no idea about the Sherry Markovitz exhibit at BAM. That would be worth risking a trip for. I envy you the opportunity to shop at the Bead Festival!

  10. Thanks for sharing so many of Sherry's pieces! How fortunate to get to walk through the exhibit with her!!

    I love the delicate beauty of your new heading - like wildflowers in spring. The red color is an unexpected surprise that is the mark of an artist with a practiced eye for color!

    Glad you were able to indulge your bead lust!!

  11. Wow! Love your new heading. Blown away by Sherry Markovitz's work.

    When she does her bead work, does she apply them to some other medium, or are they freeform sculpture?

    Just wondering...

  12. To Laura ~ The foundation for each of Sherry's animals is a taxidermy form. She then does paper mache over the form and paints it before adding beads and embellishments. In the walk through, she mentioned something about how the ears, and antlers are separate so that she can apply them to the basic head form in a pose that she likes. She also said she spends a lot of time watching animals, which I think is apparent from looking at her sculptures.... Thanks for your comment!

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  14. Wow is right...other peoples creative minds never cease to astound me. :)
    Great blog Robin..I passed along the Arte y Pico award!

  15. Anonymous12:27 PM

    Still nothing new, dear Robin?
    No word from you, and bead and bobbin
    seem to be on holiday.
    Or has my guessing gone astray?
    Are you in fact extremely busy?
    Worn out by work or even dizzy?
    Just let us have one sentence, please,
    to put us all again at ease.

    Many greetings, Sabine

  16. Robin, you have been lost to me for far too long..........I have missed watching you art grow and am happy again to have found you again.

    The work you and your friends produce is beyond anything I have ever seen and the dedication you put into it is a credit to you.

    I will be back very soon.

  17. Sherry Markovitz's work is amazing. I couldn't believe my eyes!

    In fact several pieces on your blog are eyecatching. Your soul cards are truly works of art and the new banner is exquisite.

  18. these are truely amazing...are the bases hard and are they glued on or stitched? how large are these?

  19. Thanks for the post...doug


Thanks you for joining the discussion on this post today!