Saturday, December 22, 2012

Cat Enters Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest

Cat Enters Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest!
But I think the cat looks cute, don't you?

Cow Salt Licks Turned into Art

This story is from npr

Whit Deschner stands in the middle of a pasture outside of Baker, Ore., probably 30 or 40 feet away from a black cow licking a white salt block.
To most of us, this may look like a bucolic scene from ranch country, a smattering of black cattle on a vast field that spreads toward distant mountains. But, for Deshner, it's art in the making.
Deschner is probably the world's foremost connoisseur of salt block art. These sculptures start out as 50-pound cubes of salt, about a foot long on each side. Ranchers give them to their livestock as nutritional supplements. Six years ago, Deschner was visiting a buddy who had put a block out in front of his cabin. It caught their eye.
"We'd had a couple of beers, and it just started looking more and more like art to us," Deschner says. "Could be outside a federal building."
What the deer left behind looked like a swirling sculpture of grooves, pinnacles and even a small porthole. To Deschner, there was only one thing to do.
An Angus cow licks a salt block in a field near Baker City, Ore.
Taki Telonidis
"Why not have a salt lick art contest?" he says.
Licking For A Cause
"Oh, we all thought he was crazy," says Martin Aritola of Oregon Trail Livestock Supply, "but it turns out we were the crazy ones." Aritola's is one of many businesses who were dubious at first, but now support the Great Salt Lick Contest.
It's just a couple days before this year's event, and this is one of several locations where ranchers are dropping off sculptures for the contest.
Kim Jacobs has just come off the range with two sculptures to enter in the contest. Her licks join about 20 others on a long table in the center of the store, each with paperwork that includes the title and species of artist. Some animals lick sculptures that look like vertebrae from prehistoric creatures, others like windswept sandstone formations you might see in canyon country.
"I think my cows do an OK job, but I really feel my sheep have brought it home for me," Jacobs says.
Despite all the tongue-in-cheek humor, there is a serious side to the Great Salt Lick: It's an auction and fundraiser to support Parkinson's disease research. Deschner himself has Parkinson's. He walks with a stoop and trembles. He says living with the disease has taught him that "you have to follow your folly."
"To tie the Parkinson's into the salt licks, into the auction, maybe was a foolish idea. But what the heck," he says.
And over the years, Deschner's folly has raised more than $30,000.
Bringing Community Together
Putting on the Great Salt Lick is a community effort, and on the night of the auction, the mayor and his band kick things off with some cowboy tunes. It's not long before the hall is packed with the most unusual collection of people.
Organizer Whit Deschner examines four licks left for him by a local rancher.
Taki Telonidis
"Cowboys with cow manure clear to their knees and beat-up old hats, and wine sippin' hippies, and some of the more elite, high-dollar people around town, you know," says Mib Daley, a local rancher, and the official auctioneer for the Great Salt Lick. "They don't normally get along that well, you know. And when they get in a situation like this with the salt lick auction, they just all get along. It's weird!"
One by one, the salt licks are brought to the stage and Daley takes off with the bidding. Blocks sell for about $5 at the feed store, but here most sell for $200 or $300. And a few of the more unusual pieces hit $1,000.
In the end, the auction raises well over $12,000, shattering last year's record. Everybody leaves the hall with smiles on their faces, including Beth and Fred Phillips, who raise Angus cattle and entered four salt licks in the contest.
"We'd like to think our cows are more artistic than they used to be, but, to be honest, they probably aren't," Beth says.
"They're definitely more artistic than our neighbors,' " Fred says.
So how do they nurture their artists?
"We breed for it now," Fred says.
This story was made possible with support from the George S. and Dolores Dore Eccles Foundation.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Cutest Endangered Baby. Ever

                                                                        Baby Orangutan

Monday, December 3, 2012

These pandas are having so much fun.   Enjoy!   Happy Holidays to all our 2 legged and four legged friends

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Holiday A.R.T. Salon Exhibit

The Holiday A.R.T. Salon Exhibit

When: December 7 – December 15, 2012
Opening Reception: First Friday, December 7, 6-9pm 

Joyce Gordon Gallery
406 14th St (12th St. Bart Exit)
Oakland, Ca. 94612

Participating artists include: Aziz, Christine Balza, Chukes, Samantha Chundur, Linda Fong, James Gayles, Renata Gray, Monjett Graham, Gerald Griffin, Anthony J. Hall, April Hankins, Penny Harncharnvej, Woody Johnson, Virginia Jourdan, Eric Murphy, John Neary, Gabriel Navar, Patricia Patterson, Lordy Rodriguez, Karen Senefuru, Malik Senefuru, Saska, Karin Turner, Takeshi Nakayoshi, Tomye and more.
For more information please contact:
Gallery Director: Eric Murphy -

Joyce Gordon Gallery presents “The Holiday A.R.T. Salon Exhibit”, featuring works by more than 15 bay area artists for this holiday season.

It's that time of year; Joyce Gordon Gallery is hosting a Holiday A.R.T. Salon Exhibit. We have asked our beloved artists both past and present to share their access to real treasures for this holiday season. In the tradition of the French ‘salon-style’ art exhibition, this show will fill the gallery with beautiful hand made treasures to dazzle the eyes and warm the heart.

There is no better shopping than supporting small businesses and galleries in our communities and the artists we serve. Opening night will feature refreshments and drinks, and an opportunity to meet with artists showing their work. The gallery will start this holiday art sale on First Friday, December 7th. In addition to the beautiful artwork our artists will provide, we will have a selection of specially marked artworks from Joyce Gordon's collection for sale. We will also sale raffle tickets for prizes. Free raffle tickets will go to the first 15 guests to arrive on First Friday, December 7th. We look forward to seeing you on opening night!

Joyce Gordon Gallery is a commercial fine art gallery located in the downtown district of Oakland California. It exhibits art that reflects the social and cultural diversity of the Bay Area and international artists. The aim of the gallery is to respect the creative pursuits of the individual and seeks to make such work accessible to a broad audience.

Joyce Gordon Gallery    
406 14th St, Oakland, CA 94612     

Sunday, November 25, 2012

7th Annual Jingletown Winter ArtWalk Announced

The Jingletown Arts & Business Community is pleased to announce the 7th Annual Winter Art Walk, Saturday and Sunday, December 1 – 2, 11 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

The Winter ArtWalk will hold an opening reception on Friday, November 30, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at 4:20 Gallery, 420 Peterson Street, between Ford and Glascock Streets, Oakland, 94601.
These events are free and open to the public.

The annual winter open studio event will highlight the work of more than 35 artists who live and/or work in the area known as Jingletown, which is situated between the Park and Fruitvale Street bridges bordered by the estuary separating Oakland from the island of Alameda.

Among other notable artistic enterprises, it is the location of the Gray Loft Gallery, the Institute of Mosaic Art, Apples & Oranges Gallery and Float Gallery, as well as studios of many other notable artists who are living and working in one of the most established arts districts in the Bay Area.

For a complete listing of Jingletown artists, businesses and upcoming events in the area, please visit our website at

Artwalk Participating Artists:

4:20 Gallery – 420 Peterson Street
Mariah Carle, photography, 
Kathy Cronin, photography,
Jill Gibson, sculpture and jewelry,
Susan Laing, textiles and jewelry,
Grant Marcoux, forged metalwork,
Jill McLennan, painting, printmaking & ornaments,
John Colle Rogers, H20 Colors and sculpture,
Bill Silveira, mixed media,
Susan Tuttle, jewelry and photography,
Linda Vaughn, textiles, fiber art,
Jon Zax, photography,
2889 Ford Street
Barbara Cushman, collage & hand crafted note cards,  #21
Gray Loft Gallery – 2889 Ford Street, 3rd floor
Susan Brady, mixed media, artist books
Eben Ostby, photography,
Ginny Parsons, mixed media,
Styrous, photography,
Jan Watten, photography,
Karyn Yandow, photography,
Counterpoint Studio – 2899 Ford Street
Lisa Levine, photography,
Peter Tonningsen, photography,
Institute of Mosaic Art, 3001 Chapman Street
Multiple Artists, mosaics,
Ford Street Studios, 2934 Ford Street
Elena Baikova, painting  #37
Peter Dreyfuss, steel sculpture and watercolors,  #35
Chris Kanyusik, sculpture,  #39
Larry Lesterud, photography   #37
Sage Moore, clay   #3
Stan Peterson, sculpture & drawings,  #4
Fernando Reyes, painting, printmaking, drawing,  #26
Anastasia Schipani, textiles and painting,  #30
Apples and Oranges Gallery – 2934 Ford Street  #21
Christopher Ellingson, painting,
Judy Chamberlin, painting,
Chris Kanyusik, sculpture,
White Wall Gallery – 2934 Ford Street  #8
Kevin Mark Collins, landscapes,
Maira Dizgalvis, handmade gourd lamps
Hannah Woebkenberg, mixed media,

About Jingletown: Jingletown acquired its name from Portuguese cannery workers whose earnings would "jingle" in their pockets at the end of the day as they walked home from the factories in the area.  As time went on the neighborhood went into disuse, but in the early 1980’s artists realized the potential and converted many of the neglected warehouses into functioning live/work spaces.  It is now a thriving artist community and one of the fastest growing arts districts in the Bay Area.

In a time when our neighborhood has been changing dramatically, the goal of the Jingletown Arts and Business Community is to heighten awareness about the rich and diverse population of working and exhibiting artists and the creative opportunities in the Jingletown Arts District.

Jingletown Winter Art Walk
Contact: Jan Watten

Dr Rock & Latin Rock, Inc. Presents Holiday Party Featuring Santana Members Past & Present- Alex Lightwood

Holiday Party
Sat Dec 8
Doors 7pm $18 Show 8pm $22 Door
Over 21 please

Dr Rock & Latin Rock, Inc. Presents Holiday Party Featuring Santana Members Past & Present-
Alex Lightwood
Tony Lindsay
Raul Rekow
Walfredo de los Reyes Jr
Ermonn Flynn
Ken Harrill
Myron Dove

Club Fox
Tickets   650-FOX-7770
2223 Broadway
Redwood City
CA  94063

Dharma Talk by the Nuns of Aloka Vihara

Dharma Talk by the Nuns of Aloka Vihara
On Sunday, December 2nd, Alameda Sangha will be hosting and welcoming
two Theravada Buddhist nuns from San Francisco. 7-9pm

Ayya Santacitta and Ayya Anandabodhi will speak to us on the Dharma.
These nuns practice in the traditions of the Thai Forest Monastery and offer regular opportunities
 to hear the dharma and practice at their monastaryin the Sunset District. 

They are very important in the local Bay area Theravada Buddhist world. 

For more information about their order please visit their website

Buena Vista United Methodist
2311 Buena Vista Ave
Alameda, CA 94501

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Don't Miss Lisa B's Holiday Concert

Lisa B (Lisa Bernstein) ~ Songs for Chanukah, Christmas, and the Solstice
Saturday, December 8, 2012 from 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM

Musically Minded Academy
5776 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94618
(510) 601-5700
Door general $15, students/seniors $12, advance sales available until Dec. 8:

Featuring artists:
Lisa B (Lisa Bernstein), vocals
Ben Flint, keyboards
Fred Randolph, bass
Alan Hall, drums  
Jazz and pop singer and poet Lisa B (Lisa Bernstein) and her Holiday Trio will perform a diverse mix of songs celebrating Chanukah, Christmas, and the Solstice at this special concert on the first night of Chanukah. The performance will feature songs from Lisa B's 2011 holiday CD, including the Jewish traditional song "Hine Ma Tov," Matisyahu's Chanukah song "Miracle," the standards "Let It Snow," "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas," and "Christmas Time Is Here," Donny Hathaway's soul holiday song "This Christmas," a special version of Cole Porter's "Night and Day" celebrating the Solstice, and Lisa B's new originals "Holiday in Oakland" and "The Flame." 
Here's a stream and lyrics from Reverb Nation of "Holiday in Oakland," a new anthem celebrating the great city of Oakland composed with Jim Gardiner of Pajama Studios: 
Singer-songwriter-poet Lisa B (Lisa Bernstein) performs jazz, jazz-soul, and pop standards and original songs, often incorporating her unique spoken word and poetic rap. Her five CDs received radio play and charting on hundreds of trade-reporter stations and excellent reviews in All Music Guide, Jazz Times, and many other publications. 
Of Lisa’s 2011 holiday CD, critics wrote “Vibrant, diverse... courageous… [with] an energy that is enchanting” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer); “Should be playing in hipper households over the next few months. Tasty throughout” (Midwest Record); “An ambitious undertaking… Ms. Bernstein’s energy is so palpable –- you can’t help but be drawn in… highly recommended.”  –
Lisa B has performed 80+ gigs in the Bay Area and beyond, including the Elbo Room, Bottom of the Hill, San Francisco State, Stanford University, 2009 Harmony Festival, La Pena, Paradise Lounge, and 2nd Annual Bay Area JazzPoetry Festival. She is the author of the poetry books The Transparent Body (Wesleyan University Press) and Anorexia (Five Fingers Poetry), and her poems have appeared in 60+ anthologies and periodicals. Lisa B is a former Associate Director of the Poetry Center at SFSU and received creative writing grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Headlands Center for the Arts, and elsewhere. She also volunteers as a poetry-writing teacher to youth in Oakland and Emeryville. (
Ben Flint, pianist, performed for many years with Isaac Hayes’s band and has also performed with Ledisi, Mary Stallings, and Nicolas Bearde.  He studied at the Berklee College of Music, has a master’s degree in music from USC, and teaches at Berkeley Community College and the Jazzschool. Ben is a regular member of Lisa B’s trio and has cowritten one song with her.
Bassist Fred Randolph leads The Fred Randolph Quintet and performs with the Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, Sandy Cressman’s Homenagem Brasileira, Michael Smolens’s Kriya, Bobbe Norris and Larry Dunlap, Kenny Washington, Marcos Silva, and many others. He leads the jazz program at Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland.
Drummer Alan Hall has performed and/or recorded with Eddie Harris, Paul McCandless, Art Lande, Ratzo Harris, Stuart Hamm, Kai Eckhardt, Billy Childs, Kenny Werner, Rebecca Parris, Cirque du Soleil and many others. He is featured on Lisa B’s 2011 holiday CD. He teaches at Cal State University East Bay, the Jazzschool, Musically Minded Academy, and elsewhere.

Blue Planet Network Benefit and Photography Exhibit

Blue Planet Network Benefit and Photography Exhibit
Friday, December 7, 2012, 7-10pm

WixLounge San Francisco, 2601 Mission Street, 3rd floor, San Francisco, CA 94110

Wix Lounge San Francisco presents a benefit for Blue Planet Network on Friday, December 7th, 2012 from 7-10pm.

Join photographers Rudi Dundas and Christine Krieg as they talk about their experiences and show their work for Blue Planet Network in rural areas of Kenya, India, Cambodia and Vietnam.  Special guest, Sabore, a traditional Masaii warrior from the Samburu region, will also be attending.

Today nearly one billion people live without access to clean water. BPN's  goal is to increase the impact of safe drinking water programs for people worldwide.

A photography exhibit of the work of Ms. Dundas and Ms. Krieg will be on display during the month of December. All prints will be available for sale.

People involved:
Meredith Nevard,
Christine Krieg, Christine Krieg Photography
Rudi Dundas, Rudi Dundas Photography
Lisa Nash, Blue Planet Network
Silke Knebel, Blue Planet Network
Jackie Goneconti, Blue Planetwork

Websites: (Event announcement and RSVP)

Website (Event announcement and RSVP)