Each year in September AABA honors local artists who represent our diverse art scene and who give back to their community.

For the fifth year, the Albuquerque Art Business Association is honoring area artists who not only excel in the arts, but who have given back to their communities. By sharing their time, talent and passion, they help develop a whole new generation of art lovers and artists and sustain the hope that New Mexico will continue to be home to thousands of working artists for many years to come. This year we honor seven artists as Local Treasures and will award one “Lifetime of Giving” award to the late Fred Wilson (1932-2012) at an awards ceremony at the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History, Sunday, September 9, 1-4pm. In addition, there will be receptions for the artists throughout the month including First Friday Artscrawl on September 7 and Route 66 Artscrawl on September 21.

(Image: Ladron Vista, painting)

Carol P. Chamberland: Carol is an artist and outdoor enthusiast who finds inspiration in our history and landscapes. She holds a BFA in Painting from Arizona State University and an MA and MFA in Conceptual Design from San Francisco State University. She is equally at home with gouache and pencil, photography, computer graphics and video. Nature is her Muse, with its violent geologic history of submersion and uplift and the ever-changing drama of southwestern skies overhead. When not painting, she serves as a docent at the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History and leads a team of rock art recorders for the archaeology department of the BLM. She is happiest when outdoors with pack and camera. Her work can be seen at Weyrich Gallery where she will be given a First Friday reception September 7, 5-8:30pm, in honor of this award.

(Image: Through the Glass)

Robert Medina Cook: Robert approaches his photography in a unique manner. In this digital age where photographers shoot hundreds of images, he lets the subject speak to him spiritually and the result is that he shoots very few raw images to create his final works of art. He personally performs every aspect of each image from shooting, editing, printing, framing and even how it is displayed. Robert has a profound respect for nature, humanity and mother earth. He is also generous in sharing his knowledge with up and coming photographers, speaking to groups, jurying exhibits, and teaching workshops. He is currently teaching a workshop called “Finding Your Visual Voice” where he urges photographers to stretch their limits and work to improve the quality of their work. His work will be shown at The Artistic Image in September 2012 with two Artscrawl receptions for the artist at the gallery – Friday, Sept. 7 and Friday Sept. 21.

Karl and Mary Hofmann:  The Hofmanns have dedicated most of their lives to pottery, excelling at their craft for over 40 years. Karl and Mary met while working on degrees in art at Michigan State University. Karl went on to earn an MFA in ceramics and sculpture; Mary an MA in painting and art history. They bring many influences to their pottery from the Meissen porcelain and folk pottery that decorated Karl’s childhood home in Germany to the wedging and throwing techniques he studied in Japan. Their pieces are both functional and beautiful and they believe that each pot should have a life force of its own that breathes vitality and excitement into the form.  They are also dedicated to mentoring students and other artists, sharing their enthusiasm, time, and talent.  Their work is always on display at Weems Galleries, Old Town and the NE Heights. There will be an artists’ reception honoring them at Weems Gallery, 7200 Montgomery NE on Saturday, September 15, 10am-5pm.

(Image: Green Avanya Olla)

Tony Jojola: Tony is one of a handful of Native glass artists and is almost unique in working in hot-blown glass. He began making pottery in Isleta Pueblo as a boy, inspired by his grandfather who was also a silversmith and woodcarver. When he enrolled in the Institute of American Indian Art, he had his first encounter with molten glass and fell in love with its fluidity and permanence. A scholarship to the prestigious Haystack Mt. School of Crafts in Maine cemented his commitment. He apprenticed to Dale Chihuly, the internationally recognized master of glass art and became a member of his team of glass artists. He uses traditional and ceremonial forms—ollas, seed jars and baskets—as the basis for his blown glass vessels. He has established the Taos Glass Workshop, giving back to his community by training at-risk Native youth in a viable, fulfilling skill. A new generation of glass artists is already emerging. His work can always be seen at Wright’s Indian Art.  There will be an artist’s reception in September, date tba. 

(Image: Cicada, oil on canvas)

Daniel North: Daniel’s paintings begin by drawing with the full length of his body, creating a free-flowing composition that continues to exist outside the barrier of the visual surface. Layer after layer, he builds lines and “river-like” paths as well as thick, rough surfaces. At its best, a finished painting is a subtle, multi-layered and deep map of a small area of our lives. He maintains a live/work studio on the mesas in Placitas with his wife and three children. His prolific production of over 200 paintings a year has garnered the attention of galleries and museums across North America. He has exhibited withPalette Contemporary Art and Craftsince 2006 and during that time has worked with area artists to help further their technical proficiency as painters and professionals in the field. He is also a volunteer grant-writer for Cottonwood Classical Preparatory School in Albuquerque.

(Image: Old Town Mercado)

Michael Norviel: Michael spent much of his life directing the Medical Illustration Department at the UNM School of Medicine. His illustrations are in 250 (give or take) books, articles and papers. While at UNM, he spent time weekly mentoring students with a background in art who were also interested in science, introducing them to the challen-ges of medical illustration. He is now retired and is devoting his time to his painting. His interiors are reminiscent of Henri Matisse, filled with an amazing blanket of color and pattern. His floral landscapes capture an intense richness of color and movement. His work can always be seen at Sumner & Denein Downtown Albuquerque where he will be honored with an exhibit and both a First Friday and Route 66 Artscrawl .in September. He also shows in Key West, Florida where he will have a show in Jan, 2013.

David Zaintz: David is a self-taught, mixed-media artist and contemporary abstract painter. Much of his work reflects a blend of his New York and Russian Jewish family heritage, along with the introduction of the culture and style of growing up in northern New Mexico. He was president of the Rio Rancho Jewish Center Youth Group in 1980, volunteered teaching art to children at Longfellow Elementary School Latch Key Program, and has worked within the Albuquerque and Santa Fe gay communities since 1985, volunteering for many AIDS benefits over the years. He is also an active member in the Gay Men’s Chorus and is on the events committee for the Albuquerque Chapter of Black Tie Club International. He donates artwork to the NMAS and related events in Santa Fe and Albuquerque. His work can be seen at Gallerie Imaginarium in Downtown Albuquerque where he will be honored with both a First Friday and Route 66 Artscrawl in September.

Fred Robert Wilson (1932-2012): Fred Wilson moved to Albuquerque in 1975, bringing with him the Muddy Wheel Pottery School, Studio and Gallery that he had established in Van Nuys, California. He was a noted artist—creating sculpture, pottery, masks, paintings, stone carvings and woodcarvings for over 60 years. He was founder of the New Mexico African-American Artists’ Guild which helped create the face of African-American art in New Mexico. Fred opened his studio to about 40 school tours each year, helping students appreciate art and discover their own artistic talent. These were not just tours, each child was allowed to create two pieces of pottery, one hand-built and one thrown on the wheel. From the first pot he threw at age 14 until his death, he touched countless hearts with the spiritual qualities of his art and his teachings. In 2007 he was a recipient of The Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts as a Major Contributor to the Arts. A “Lifetime of Giving” award will be accepted in his honor by Kristen Wilson., his wife and creative partner of 25 years.