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April 15, 2014 > Pen Women and perfection

Pen Women and perfection

Submitted By Bruce Roberts

History has long fingers that reach into the present. When 117 years ago three women organized a group to combat gender inequalities, did they realize that in the year 2014 talented women across the country would still be continuing the struggle in their name?

From April 11 to June 6, the Diablo/Alameda Branch of the National League of American Pen Women (NLAPW) will exhibit their artistic talents at HaywardÕs Foothill Gallery in ÒArt: Believe/Achieve.Ó Formed in Washington, DC, by three women journalists who were not allowed into the Press Club, NLAPW today is open to any professional female artist, writer, or music composer. The nine artists contributing to this show live up to the high standards of the organization.

Watercolors by Charlotte Severin are like a tour of the world. France, Mexico, England, Oakland, San FranciscoÑcolorful scenes captured on canvas to grace a room. Similarly, Barbara SpanskieÕs oils show an eye for detail in multiple settings. From the cows of Mt. Diablo to the Mission Courtyard in Santa Barbara and a Hyde Street cable car, these peaceful settings are complemented by a moving portrait, ÒSorrowful Strength,Ó showing a range of talent.

Range is also displayed by Dori Pendergrass, moving from whimsical collections of paint stir sticks to arresting digital photography to marvelous oils. Her ÒReclining NudeÓ is outstanding, as are the ghostly polemic ÒStop Violence and HateÓ by Elizabeth Glaubman, and the brilliantly colored abstracts of Elizabeth Hack. HackÕs ÒSummer Drops Two,Ó ÒTide Tidings,Ó and ÒRadiance GreenÓ are spectacular uses of color.

Spectacular, too, are the mixed media masks of Natica Angilly. Paying homage to inspiring artists before herÑ Emily Dickinson, John Keats, T.S. EliotÑAngilly adapts masks to eye-catching purposes with a variety of background color, leaves, jewels, and fabric. The mixed media creations of Pallavi Sharmi use similar arrays of material to show her thoughts on living in the USA, far from her native India.

All this talent is highlighted further by the beautiful and varied ceramics of Leona Nichandros. Kazumi Cranney provides HaigaÑcombinations of Japanese Sumi ink drawings and haiku poetry. Her drawing ÒPickling Winter Cabbage,Ó for example, is pulled by her accompanying poem from a simple domestic task into a profound story of tradition and the human reluctance to change: Grandmother; Still holding out; Pickling winter cabbage.

The reception for this showcase of creativity is Saturday, May 10 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., be dazzled by the art and meet the artists who will share brief comments about their works. Writers who are members of the group will give short readings of their work.

Art: Believe/Achieve
Friday, Apr 11 Ð Friday, Jun 6
Thursday Ð Saturday: 10 a.m. Ð 4 p.m.

Saturday, May 10
1 p.m. - 3 p.m.

Foothill Gallery
22394 Foothill Blvd, Hayward
(510) 538-2787

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