Archive for November 21, 2013

Artist of the moment……..Colleen Madamombe

Colleen Madamombe was a Shona artist born in Harare, Zimbabwe in the year 1964. Colleen Madamombe earned a diploma in fine arts from the National Gallery of Zimbabwe. For the artist’s subject matter she enjoyed portraying the strong African women. She often worked portraying women doing something of their daily life including chores like carrying water, going to the market, and even having a child.

In the artist’s native of Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe International Film Festival the first place trophy after one of her characters.

Colleen Madamombe won the Best Female Artist of Zimbabwe three times.

In 1986 she married a fellow artist named Fabian Madamombe. Before she met him Colleen worked as a painter but after helping her husband with some projects Colleen began to produce sculptures. Below is an example of a mother and child sculpture by Fabian Madamombe.


Colleen Madamombe passed away in 2009.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

In this clip we visit the studio of Colleen Madamombe:

Yet another family of talented artists!


Artist of the moment…….Diem Chau

Diem Chau is one of my favorite sculptors in the world because of her medium of choice, Crayola color crayons and sometimes graphite pencils. I was stunned with the amount of detail and the life that seemed to exist in the tips of pencils and crayons used by the artist. Diem Chau was born in Saigon, Vietnam in the year 1979. Her family emigrated to the United States in 1986.

For her collegiate studies Chau attended Cornish College of the Arts located in Seattle, Washington.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

In this clip a great selection of works by Diem Chau. I am sure you will want to go buy a new box of crayons and try sculpting a work for yourself:

What I like most about this artist is that most people who read this site have gone through hundreds if not thousands of pencils and crayons, yet how many of us have thought about using it as a medium itself! Amazing! Like the Inuit people who carve from antlers or whalebone, its a great example of an artist using what they have to make something beautiful!

The artist also enjoys working with fabric and thread.

A link to the website of Diem Chau. I must add its a great time for visit as the artist is selling one her carved pencil works:


Artist of the moment……Sanford Robinson Gifford

Sanford Robinson Gifford was an American artist who painted wonderful landscapes. Sanford Gifford was born in the year 1823 in Greenfield, New York. For his collegiate education Gifford attended Brown University located in Providence, Rhode Island.

Early on he painted portraits but switched to landscapes as his focus beginning in 1846.

In this clip a great selection of landscapes by Sanford Gifford:

Gifford was made a full member of the National Academy of Design.

Sanford Gifford passed away in 1880 at the age of 57 years old.

Gifford was also among the country’s leading luminism painters. The artist loved to portray a sense of atmosphere in his work. To achieve this look Gifford finished his paintings by covering them with many layers of translucent varnish. The main idea of luminism as a style of painting is portraying atmospheric light.

Price range information: Many works range from $50,000 to $3 million dollars. The only painting I could find at auction this year sold for $1.2 million dollars.

What I enjoy most about this artist is his sense of design. Its great when a very small painting, which size you cannot tell just by seeing on your computer screen, sticks in your memory. The painting in the gallery of Venice is only 3 by 6 inches, but is striking in its portrayal of light and design.

As an added bonus I would like to see what the translucent varnish made in the mid 1880s, looks like now after a century and half of exposure to the elements.

The work below titled “Sunday Morning Camp in the Seventh Regiment near Washington D.C.” The painting is from May 1861. Civil War works by Sanford Gifford are very unique and highly sought after by museums. Many war artists watched and observed whereas Sanford Gifford was part of the Union army where he served as a soldier during three tours of duty from 1861 to 1863. The painting will be sold by Christie’s Auction House on December the 5th and estimated to sell in the $3 to $5 million dollar range.



Artist of the moment……Norman Tait


Norman Tait is a Northwest Coast artist born in Kincolith, British Columbia, Canada in the year 1941. Tait is well schooled in many mediums including carving masks, totem poles, printmaking, and even making jewelry.

Tait has even completed a commission for the British Royal Family at Bushy Park located in London, England.

Some other locations where Norman Tait has carved totem poles are the British Columbia Museum of Anthropology and also Stanley Park. For those of you not lucky enough to visit Vancouver, Stanley Park is the second largest park in North America behind Central Park in New York City.

The artist works with the Nisga’a culture and society. Tait is seen as the best artist working with Nisga’a culture.

Norman Tait also has a nephew, Ron Telek, who is a professional carver/artist.

Norman Tait also had a son who was an outstanding artist born in 1965 named Isaac Tait. Isaac Tait was born in Canada but eventually wound up in Sante Fe where he taught at the Institute of American Indian Arts. Below an example of Isaac Tait’s art. Isaac Tait passed away in 2000.


Norman Tait sometimes works with a fellow artist named Lucinda Turner making intricate masks and carvings. Below an example of a collaborative effort from the pair of artists.


Price range information:  Works range from $1,000 to $25,000.

Yet another fantastic family of artists!