Above is a photo of my recently completed submission for the "Outside the Box" show to be held at the Arts Building in downtown Auburn in April. It is an auction to benefit Placer Arts. All I need to do is find some nice red candles for the top. Kate and I have a rule not to buy anything when making donated pieces, but I think I'll have to in order to properly finish it. My skeletons did not behave very well in the glaze firing. I wasn't planning to raku them, but they collapsed onto some posts in the kiln and would be forever stuck if I didn't pull them out while the glaze was molten. I probably shouldn't have used that rusty old fencing to make the armature. It flexed way too much. Because I had to wait for the kiln to shut off, I missed the canvas bag auction at the fairgrounds. I thought it would go on for at least two hours, but I showed up an hour and a half after it started and everything was being cleaned up. So I'm in the dark about how many people showed up, how much they bid on the bags, who got mine, etc. I also missed the opening at Coffeetown for the eight local artists who painted a small painting daily for twentyone days in a row. Damn skeletons. I went over there later, though. The exhibit is nicely displayed with each artist's work in a block by themselves composed of same-sized unframed small canvas board compositions. On the wall above the fireplace is a group of one of each artist's framed work, so the viewer can compare styles between the women. All paintings are low-priced, yet not many had sold when I went to see it. There are some lovely landscapes with clouds by Wanda Avery that tempted me. I am illogically bothered by canvas board. If I can get over that prejudice, maybe I'll see what's left at the end of the month and snap one up. Saturday, I picked up my work that was on display at the Sacramento Airport. The organizer, Alan Dismuke, is currently the gallery director at Solomon Dubnick, so that's where I met him. There is a nice landscape show up now. Quiet horizons and big splashy verging-on-abstract canvases. He took me on a tour of Panama Pottery, near City College. It's like a miniature Gladding McBean, with ancient equipment and beehive kilns. They made terra cotta pots, but now it is transforming into a clay artist workspace. Alan maintains a small gallery there with both indoor and outdoor clay sculpture. He invited me to show there. It is really off the beaten path but worth a visit. I also stopped in to see Mark Oldland's work at Howard/Skinner on its last day. Mark only had a few pieces, but as usual, they were pretty cool. The paintings on display were of a sort seen a lot these days. Check out their website and you can see what I'm talking about. Also, I went to the Crocker. The new building is really coming along. In the ballroom, there is an exhibit of exquisitely painted animals by a living artist painted in the "Old Master" style. The Buddha show didn't impress me much. Most of the pieces are small and only a few emanate with "real art" energy. But what do I know? I went to visit my current favorite painting there: a renaissance depiction of the Madonna nourishing St. Bernard by squirting milk from her breast into his mouth. You don't see much of that kind of religious art anymore.