50 artists, 50 pieces, one great night

Amber QuaidManaging editor

Del Mar College Art Partners raised $2,900 during a Sept. 12 fundraiser that drew more than 50 local artists to the Joseph A. Cain Memorial Art Gallery. As an added bonus to the event, the Art Partners purchased three winning pieces of art to be displayed at Del Mar College campuses.
The three pieces that won include “A View from My Garden,” “Red Dot” and “The Mariner Dreams of Ink and Weather, No. 9725.”
“The first prize was my favorite, the colors are delightful,” said Betty Shamel of Rockport.
Two of the winning pieces will remain on the East Campus while the third will go to the West Campus library. The official location of each piece has not yet been announced.
“There’s just not one piece here that I wouldn’t like at the library,” said West Campus librarian Lisa Muilenburg.
One art piece that had attendees talking was by Sylvia H. Ramsey that depicted a Del Mar professor, Russ Long. Ramsey is a Del Mar College graduate and her art piece was a project for one of her classes while attending in spring 2011. She said Long was a great volunteer and his character definitely shines through in this piece.
Another piece that turned some heads was a collection of corsets by Michelle Smythe, the executive director of K Space Contemporary, a local non-profit organization dedicated to presenting and promoting contemporary art. The piece consisted of nine corsets arranged in three rows of three. Smythe said these were made from paper pulp and a mixture of other items such as corn husks and grass. She needed an outlet for her art and the birth of a child limited how she could work, so she turned to paper pulp art.
“I am inspired by the women’s figure,” Smythe said of her inspiration, “and the structure and form of the corsets.”
Betty Shamel entered a piece called “Dream Dancer,” a painting of a sailboat tied to the dock in Rockport. Shamel originally did this piece as a sketch but decided it needed some flare and added vibrant colors to it. She entered this exhibit because she wanted to show her support for the Art Partners.
“I believe in supporting the arts,” Shamel said. “I do this event every year.”
Jorge Alegria, a former Del Mar College fine arts major, also entered one of his pieces titled “Vera — War of Angels.” This is part of a series of graphite works that starts with Noah and tells Alegria’s personal narrative from there forward. He has 15 pieces in the” War of Angels” series. To view them, visit jorgealegria.com.
“It’s great,” Alegria said of the exhibit. “You get to see a whole range of style, technique and influences.”
Del Mar paintings classes took advantage of this event by viewing the artwork, discussing the importance of the pieces, how they were constructed and the different types. Other Del Mar professors offered this as an extra credit opportunity to show non-art majors what the campus has to offer and to support the Art Partners.
“This was an extra-credit assignment but I love this,” said Del Mar nursing student Haley Land.
Art student Patrick McGovern and his parents, Jay and Elizabeth McGovern, attended the event to show their support for Del Mar College. Though Patrick is an architect student at the University of Texas, he took the painting class at Del Mar this semester while on break from UT and is amazed at the talent presented in the show. He is one of the many painting students who benefited from the exhibit’s discussion during class time.
The piece that was the favorite of the mother and son was Kitty Dudics’ “Buddha’s Garden.”
“It’s the colors that really draw me to it,” Elizabeth McGovern said.
Though not all patrons who attended the event were art enthusiast they still showed their support as evident by Patrick’s father.
“You’ve got to give back to society,” Jay McGovern said. “Otherwise you don’t have a society.”
When the free event ended, the walls became bare and the sculpture stands empty as artwork went home with its new owners.
“It was a great turnout,” said studio art major Rebecca Garcia.
To become an Art Partner contact Dudics at 361-698-1505 or kdudics@delamr.edu. The cost is $40 for students and $50 for nonstudents (more options are available).

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