I’m very excited and honored to have been featured in an exhibition at the Loveland Museum Gallery (January 30 through April 10, 2016) along with four amazing sculptors: Jane DeDecker, Glenna Goodacre, Kathleen Caricof and Kirsten Kokkin. Curator Maureen Cory describes the exhibit, “Momentum: Women Drive the Arts in Loveland” this way:
“The city of Loveland is inexorably tied to the history of art production. The cultural and
economic roots of the city are invested in sculpture and bronze foundries. Both men and women
artists participated in the development of the art-economy, and continue to contribute in
meaningful ways. This exhibit will describe the ways in which women were critical to the
development and define their long-lasting impact. This exhibit will display the work of 5 women who, within a challenging cultural framework, were and continue to be influential in the development of Loveland as an art center and for creating a reputation for excellence in art for which Loveland is known.”
The January 28th Museum Members’ Opening Reception was a smashing success with some patrons commenting that it was “The” place to be that evening and the “best ever” show at the Museum. The February 12th public reception with demos by Jane Dedecker, Kirsten Kokkin and myself was met with equal enthusiasm. It has been a truly exceptional exhibition and we are all grateful to the Loveland Museum for showcasing five very different bodies of work by Glenna Goodacre, Jane Dedecker, Kirsten Kokken, Kathy Caricof and myself in what has proven to be a wonderfully appealing exhibition and elegant show catalog.
Part of Denver’s annual Rocky Mountain Horse Expo, the Colorado Horse Council’s Equine Art in the Park event is a juried showcase for paintings, photography and sculptures “celebrating the spirit of the horse.” It was a wonderful surprise that my first horse sculpture, “Friesian Fantasy”, was awarded 1st Place for 3-D art.
During the American Women Artists’ Master and Signature Members Show at the Bonner David Galleries in Scottsdale, the gallery gave “Settled In” their Purchase Award and donated the sculpture to the Scottsdale Museum of the West’s permanent collection. Quote Diane Swanson, Executive Director of AWA: “. . .I wanted to let you know that Bonner David Galleries purchased your piece, Settled In, as a purchase award which will be donated to the Scottsdale Museum of the West's permanent collection. The gallery absolutely loved your sculpture and felt it was the perfect recipient of their award and that the museum would be the perfect home for it. Congratulations on this remarkable achievement!”
Jasmine II received an Honorable Mention Award at the 2015 Gilcrease "Collectors’ Reserve" annual invitational show. Linda Galbraith of the Gilcrease Museum wrote “Your work was selected from among 244 great entries.”
I thought that my “High Country Totem” would be perfect for an exhibition titled “Representing the West” at the Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center in Pueblo, CO. Apparently the jury agreed because it was not only accepted into the show, it received the SECOND PLACE AWARD! “This exhibition showcases over 100 pieces of original artwork answering the question of what the American West means to each artist” and I’m happy to have had my view, that the animals are what is most meaningful to me, represented there.
Considering the outstanding calibre of work to choose from in the Society of Animal Artists 54th Annual Members Exhibition, it is indeed an honor to have my sculpture, “Breaking Trail” chosen for purchase for the permanent collection of this premier animal art museum.
My sweet little "Jasmine II" has won the Bronze/Masters Membership Division of American Women Artists Annual Master and Signature Member Show at the Addison Art Gallery on Cape Cod. Both paintings and sculptures are eligible which makes it even more special, and the honor even comes with cash and other goodies as well - Sweet!
This is the maquette for a large tiger sculpture that resides in its new home in an office in Singapore. Depicting the requested qualities of “Nobility and Vigilance”, I thought it would make a perfect small wall-hung piece. The fun challenge for me on this piece was to indicate the wonderful pattern of the tiger’s stripes using form instead of color. This can be a wall-hung piece or can sit on a shelf or tabletop to look over those under its protection.
14" x 9" x 7" Edition of 24, © 2015
I created this special small sculpture for the annual W.O.L.F. Sanctuary fundraiser, based on a photo of one of their resident wolves, Thor. His peaceful and contented demeanor reflect the safe and caring environment surrounding the furry residents of W.O.L.F. I have donated casting #1 to their silent auction at the “Mardi Growl Masquerade” May 30, 2015 at the Fort Collins (CO) Hilton. The rest of the edition is available for orders after that.
5" x 8" x 4" Edition of 35, © 2015
The latest in my series of African Animal Masks, this one depicts one of my most favorite animals. Since I’ve used the mask series as a means of sculpting the most unique and expressive part of animals I might not otherwise pick as sculpture subjects, I haven’t done masks of many of the big cats. But I do so enjoy exploring their feline forms that I jumped at the opportunity when one of my gallery’s clients wanted to commission a Cheetah Mask. Number 1, of course, went to him, but the rest of the edition is available.
11.5" x 14.5" x 3.5" Edition of 24, © 2015
Like “Tika II”, “Jasmine II” depicts one of my studio cats that passed away in 2013. Both of their ashes are in their artist’s proofs in my studio.
Jasmine was the beautiful, sweet looking but unfriendly one. I always had to warn visitors not to try to pet her or they would get nailed, though she was always affectionate and docile with Mel and me. She was a holy terror at the vet. So much fight and so many decibels for such a small cat!
I called her our “box cat” because she immediately jumped on and claimed every box that arrived in the studio and climbed into every opened one, whether it was so big that she couldn’t get out once she jumped in, or so small that only her legs would fit inside. A small cat, she was nevertheless the dominant one, always intimidating Tika out of whatever new sleeping place that Tika may have found, with one exception: Tika claimed the high carpet-covered cat shelf with the cozy tunnel and Jasmine was never able to usurp it from her. They died within two weeks of each other at age 14 of kidney failure, as both were allergic, in their own ways, to the special vet food that might have kept them going a bit longer.
"JASMINE II" 6" x 18" x 4" Edition of 35, ©2014
Rather than giving an explanation of my inspiration for this piece, I invite everyone to develop their own interpretation of what it means to them. It is a personal piece for me and I imagine that it will have varied personal meanings for others as well.
11" x 17" x 13", Edition of 18, © 2015
There was a totally mesmerizing video of Friesian horses circulating on the internet that inspired me to do this piece. My challenge was to capture both the power of this large warrior-bred horse and its incredibly graceful and elegant high-stepping trot. I am captivated by the flowing dance of the amazingly long mane and tail and the flounce of the feather hair around their hooves. Perhaps the combination of size and power with grace and elegance that attracts me to the big cats is what also appeals to me in this strikingly beautiful steed.
Edition of 24, 16" x 21.5" x 5" © 2014
I’ve taken the concept of a “Totem”, which has been defined as “a natural object or an animate being, as an animal or bird, assumed as the emblem of a clan, family or group” and applied it, instead, to a whole habitat, depicting some of the iconic animals that inhabit that environment, in this case, the “High Country.” And since it is an emblem or symbol rather than a snapshot, I have put the animals in a formal and symbolic relationship to each other rather than a natural one, but not as restricted as the well known concept of a “totem pole” where the subjects are stacked one on top of the other.
"HIGH COUNTRY TOTEM" 22" x 12" x 9" Edition of 12 © 2014
This is the sculpture I created for the W.O.L.F. sanctuary fundraiser, Waltz for the Wolves. I will be donating 20% of any sanctuary generated direct sales of this piece (at the retail price of $4400) to W.O.L.F.
A friend who had spent a good bit of time working in Alaska tells of seeing wolves from a helicopter on several occasions. He said that the pack would be running through the snow in single file with the alpha male or female (they traded off) leading the way, "breaking trail" for the others. It was the perfect name for the running wolf pose I had chosen to express the wild beauty of this fascinating creature.
© 2013, Edition of 24, 11" x 19" x 7.5"
I know that we all get many, many solicitations for donations to very worthy charities and we have to limit the ones we support to the group that speaks most loudly to our hearts. I limit most of my giving to animal causes and though I do send money often, I would really like to support these causes with donations of my sculpture as that conveys a more personal connection with the animals. However, such donations don’t do much good unless the organization has a means of turning the sculpture into much needed funds. Therefore, I’m always happy when I have a way to put my art to work where my heart is.
I’ve checked with a number of wildlife organizations that have said they could use the sculptures to fundraise and therefore have put them in my will to receive much of what will be out there when I pass. I’m honored that one of them, World Wildlife Fund, has run a Profile article on my work and my support in their November magazine. While I’m still here, however, I do whatever I can when the opportunity presents itself. Wildlife artist members of Artists For Conservation, based in Canada, have been supporting conservation organizations through sales of our work since the AFC's inception and I am proud to have been honored with the "AFC Conservation Artist Award for artistic excellence and dedication to conservation" in March of 2014 and to be included in the article titled "Healing Art, Aid for the Animals of Africa" in the National Sculpture Society’s "Sculpture Review" magazine in Spring of 2015.
In 2015 I donated sculptures to the W.O.L.F. and Cheetah Conservation Fund fundraising auctions (both resulting in subsequent sales for which I have sent the organizations a sales commission) and in 2016 I’m very excited that the Society of Animal Artists is partnering with the African Wildlife Foundation for an online sales show, “Out of Africa”, where the AWF will receive 40% of all sales receipts. So far this year I am donating a “Settled In” bronze to the W.O.L.F. Gala fundraiser on June 11 (www.wolfsanctuary.co) and a pewter “Siblings” to Friends of the National Zoo for their ZooFari fundraiser on May 19 (http://nationalzoo.si.edu.) I hope that there will be many more such opportunities to support wildlife conservation organizations with my art.
"Momentum: Women Drive the Arts in Loveland", Loveland Museum Gallery, Loveland, CO (See the article elsewhere in this Newsletter.)
"Feline Fine: Art of Cats II" Traveling Exhibition, Neville Public Museum, Green Bay, WI Showing with 14 of the best animal artists of our times, I have five pieces in this exciting all feline exhibition: "Charging Panther", "Awakening Pride", "Tika II", "Single Mom" and "Gotcha".
"Art and the Animal" Society of Animal Artists 55th Annual Tour, Canton Art Museum, Canton, OH "Jasmine II" is the piece for this touring exhibit.
"Animalia", Society of Animal Artists Juried Exhibition, Loveland Museum
Gallery, Loveland, CO
This exciting new fundraiser for the Loveland Museum is the prestigious Society of Animal Artists’ first regional show and sale and is limited to members who reside west of the Mississippi River. I will be represented in this venue by "Tiger Totem", "Friesian Fantasy" and "Settled In".
"Animals in Art - Our Partners on the Planet" Mills Pond House Gallery, NY. Friesian Fantasy and Jasmine II will be included in this exhibition which encourages artists "to share their artistic vision of animals, both domestic and wild."
"Bighorn Rendezvous", Brinton Museum, Big Horn, WY
This is the long-awaited return of the Northwest Rendezvous Group show, sale and fun weekend (including the ever popular Quick Draw and auction) that used to be held in Helena, MT. The Brinton Museum will be hosting us in their beautiful new gallery spaces.
"American Women Artists Master & Signature Members” annual exhibition, The Bennington Center for the Arts, Bennington, VT
I’m thrilled that the AWA will be hosted this year by this great supporter of representational art, The Bennington Center for the Arts. I have been in many great exhibitions there and they own several of my sculptures in their permanent collection.
"Art and the Animal" Society of Animal Artists 56th Annual Exhibition, Houston Museum of Natural Science, TX: Friesian Fantasy is my featured piece.
When Chapman University emailed saying that they needed another Panther sculpture, but this time they wanted a “mother and child panther” for a new residential complex on campus, I was thrilled to create this depiction of the strong and tender relationship between this beautiful and powerful feline and her dependent cub.
Now I’m equally thrilled that I will have that same sculpture in my home town! It was selected to be placed in the new section of Benson Sculpture Garden across the street to the south of the rest of the Park. It will be installed in June and dedicated on July 11 to be permanently on display in time for Sculpture in the Park 2015.
A life-size "Reach For The Sky", patinaed black to match the other five Rosetta panthers on campus, was recently installed in front of the Harold Hutton Sports Center at Chapman University in Orange, CA.
The online CODAworx (Collaboration Of Art + Design) has a competition every year to select the top art/design projects in 10 categories and my entry of all of the Panther sculptures I’ve placed at Chapman University has made the top 100 cut! "Panther Pride", as I’ve called the collection on campus, is one of 15 selected in the Education category. There is "People’s Choice Award" voting through Face Book until June 30 so I don’t have the final results yet, but it’s a great honor to be in the top 100 and the project will be viewed by many!
We thoroughly enjoyed our short say in Vermont in June for the opening events (Artists’ dinner, painting demonstrations, reception and Sunday brunch) for the 20th anniversary “Art of the Animal Kingdom” show at the Bennington Center for the Arts. We traveled with good friends, fellow sculptor Monty Taylor, and his wife and “handler”, Melissa. The always excellent exhibition was made even more special with the inclusion of work from all of the past Guest Artists (I was Guest Artist and juror for last year’s show) and with my surprise presentation to the show organizers, Elizabeth Small and Shirley Hutchins.
Shortly after this 20th Anniversary was announced, I received an email from artist Laney Hicks suggesting that all of the past Guest Artists might like to do something special to thank Elizabeth and Shirley for 20 years of supporting animal art through these Art of the Animal Kingdom exhibitions. Every one of the past Guest Artists wholeheartedly agreed and the result was a one-of-a-kind portfolio of original art, created as a special “Thank You” from each of us: Nancy Howe, Michael Coleman, Sandy Scott, Carl Brenders, Jan Martin McGuire, Dan Smith, Bart Walter, Laney, John Seerey-Lester, Terry Isaac, Morten Solberg, Luke Fraser, Greg Beecham, Carel Brest van Kempen and me.
My contribution was a bronze “20 YEARS” medallion (with a cougar lounging on top of the numbers) which I affixed to the front of the portfolio box containing the wonderful miniature animal drawings and paintings created by the other Guest Artists.
by Nicole Cardoza
Copyright 2013 American Women Artists
In the world of professional art consistency is highly valued. Consistency demonstrates the development of an artist's style or signature. According to Kim Barnett, owner of Oregon's Bronze Coast Gallery, this signature style is the most difficult thing for an artist to achieve. It is unique and instantly identifies a work's creator. Barnett believes sculptor Rosetta, an AWA Master Signature member, has this instantly recognizable signature style. "Her work is stylized and on this geometric plain, and still anatomically correct - very few people can create realistic sculpture that is so interpretive," Barnett says.
"I didn't want to play with dolls..."
Rosetta's work almost entirely depicts animals, but she says that growing up in the suburbs didn't allow her much exposure to the wildlife she found so fascinating. "Much to my mother's chagrin I didn't want to play with dolls, instead I carved animals out of soap and made paper sculptures" Rosetta remembers. "It was always just there - art, sculpture, animals.
Rosetta credits her father for recognizing her artist talent early on and enrolling her in drawing and painting lessons. In college Rosetta chose to study graphic design, a field she made her living in for 21 years. Sculpture remained a personal passion and Rosetta continued to sculpt and even began casting her work in bronze, after taking a class through her local community college in Marin, California.
Rosetta calls it a natural evolution from her graphic design work to her sculpture. Type-setting, trademarks and logos previously done by hand were slowly being made obsolete by computers, but Rosetta was able to translate her aesthetic from design to sculpture. "The work I was doing required you to distill shapes down to their simple essence with as little detail as possible - so the way I stylized my sculpture came out that way as well," says Rosetta. In 1985, after she won an annual competition at the National Sculpture Society, Rosetta began to invest more of her professional time in sculpture. "That award let me know I could do sculpture that I love and people would respond to it," says Rosetta.
One of the top bronze artists of her generation...
For many gallery owners, like Barnett, Rosetta was something of a pioneer in bronze sculpture and is now considered one of the top bronze artists of her generation. "Rosetta was an anomaly - she wasn't doing realism, instead she had this stylistic approach to representative art," Barnett says. "It is much easier to follow the crowd but she really made her own way.
Rosetta believes the art world is more open to women than when she began her career almost 30 years ago, and changes to the art world will reflect the redefinition of traditional gender roles.According to Barnett, there was a time when realistic Western art seemed to be the only thing gallery owners and collectors were interested in purchasing, a genre dominated by men.
"At the time I started in Colorado, sculpture was all western wildlife and dominated by men," Rosetta recalls. "I felt shut out until I realized that my work didn't belong in those Western shows and organizations that hardly had any women artists." During those early years of her career, as she gained more recognition for her work, Rosetta was invited to exhibit alongside of the founding members of American Women Artists. "I was very new to the scene and so grateful for an opportunity to show with really good artists," Rosetta says. "I believe it helped my career get going".
Artists often create in solitude and each creation can be a very personal thing to the artist, so it can be difficult for an artist to appreciate the value and benefits of association, community and networking, according to Rosetta. "Showing with high quality artists can give newcomers legitimacy and encourages them to strive forward in their own work," Rosetta says.
Rosetta's work can be seen at Cape Cod's Blue Heron Gallery, Bronze Coast Gallery in Cannon Beach, Oregon, Wilcox Gallery in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Cornerstone Gallery of Fine Art in Salt Lake City, Utah, Howard Mandville Gallery in Seattle, Washington, Evergreen Fine Art in Evergreen, Colorado, Frank Howell Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico and she is a featured artist in the book Art of the National Parks published in June 2013.
How many times does one have to answer “No” to that question before deciding that it’s time to “have a book”? So this year I created one, mainly to serve as a portfolio of my work with a little insight into my life and the inspiration for my creations. I self-published it on Blurb so that I could order just a few at a time, which makes them rather expensive, but I’m not trying to sell them for profit. I just want them for collectors and for anyone who wants to pay $62 (just to cover the cost.) Rosetta Sculpture - Sculpture by Rosetta, Sculpture Photography by Mel Schockner is hard cover, 12” square and 38 pages with a dust jacket.
A beautiful new book, “Art of the National Parks”, debuts in July. Featuring both historic and contemporary National Park paintings and sculptures, this premiere volume covers eight of our National parks and my work is included in the section for Yellowstone/Grand Teton section, along with 11 other artists. I have six images of my work included with a very nice article written by Susan McGarry. Wilcox Gallery in Jackson, WY, is hosting an exhibition of the artwork featured in that section of the book, along with a book signing event and debut of this beautiful volume on July 18. I will be in attendance along with most of the other artists and the show will be up until August 1st.
The Spring issue of the National Sculpture Society’s Sculpture Review Magazine was accompanied by an impressive 14-page “Profile” on me and my work. The writer, Jodie A. Shull, did a masterful piece of writing, covering everything I feel is important about my life and my work in a beautifully written prose, and Germana Pucci of Sculpture Review put together a great layout that delighted even this ex-graphic designer.
A stunning big new book, "The Red Fox in Art", has just come out by retired college instructor and renowned author of scholarly tomes about American sporting and wildlife art, John Orrelle. I am honored to be prominently represented in this beautiful volume with Mel's great photo of my Red Fox bronze. It's a large (11.5"x11.5") volume with 358 pages full of historic and contemporary paintings and sculptures of the Red Fox. If you are at all interested in this iconic animal and its representation in art, this book is a must have, by John Orrelle, Skagit River Press.
Since I’ve shared “In Memoriam” here when our last three kitties passed, it’s only fair that I share the good news that we are thoroughly enjoying a new Maine Coon kitten, “Cameo”, who came to us mid July. She’s a real sweetheart, affectionate, inquisitive, goofy and playful with a very loud purr and the luxurious coat, ear tufts and hugely fluffy tail (and rapidly increasing size!) typical of this wonderful breed.
As with Misty, Tara, Tika and Jasmine, Sammy’s ashes are safely tucked away in my Artist’s Proof of her sculpture. She posed for this snap shot with her sculpture in 1998, just as she had so patiently posed for me while I sculpted it the year before, obviously basking in the attention. We do so miss them all.
The French crystal company, Baccarat, has produced three of my existing small sculptures in crystal. The first, introduced for Christmas 2008, was "The Leap", which they are calling "Panther," and they have since released my "Misty" as "Misty the Cat" and my "Panther" as "Lying in Wait Panther." They are available from Baccarat and Neiman Marcus.The French crystal company, Baccarat, has produced three of my existing small sculptures in crystal. The first, introduced for Christmas 2008, was "The Leap", which they are calling "Panther," and they have since released my "Misty" as "Misty the Cat" and my "Panther" as "Lying in Wait Panther." They are available from Baccarat and Neiman Marcus.
You can imagine how chagrined I was to discover very cheap, poor but obvious copies of several of my sculptures (Running Cheetah, Seated Cheetah, Cougar Bench, The Leap, Vigilance and Panther) selling on eBay, attributed to “world famous sculptor Milo.” EBay does have a mechanism by which you can have an item removed from the site if it infringes your copyright, but if the lister contests it, they will put it back on unless you show evidence of filing a court action.
The seller, a Mr. Parviz Noghrey, contested all of the removals and re-listed the items (under several of his company names: Think Bronze, European Bronze, Landmark One Gallery, etc.) My lawyer had informed him of the copyright infringements and he was well aware of my work and that he was selling unauthorized copies, so I enlisted the services of copyright specialist Kay Collins, in Fort Collins CO, to file suit in Federal Court in Denver and serve Mr. Noghrey in New York.
The violations of my copyright were so obvious that Mr. Noghrey decided to settle out of court and a Stipulated Injunction was filed under which he agrees not to sell (or cause anyone else to sell) any more copies of any of my work. Along with part of my lawyer’s fees, he sent us his remaining inventory of infringing items and gave us the information about the shop in China where he purchased them. Of course, there is no “Milo” world famous sculptor - just a copy shop that will reproduce anything (probably from photos on the internet) that they think they can sell.
I had the metal in the Chinese copies analyzed and it is basically brass (copper & zinc with traces of other metals thrown in.) Yellower than the slightly reddish silicon bronze we use here in the US, some of the practical differences are that it is more brittle, the zinc can leach out and leave the metal spongy and susceptible to disintegrating, and it doesn't take patinas well so they appear dead compared to the ones we can achieve on our silicon bronze.
Unfortunately, copies of my work (some even using MY photos of MY sculptures to advertise them!) keep showing up all over China, Europe, the Netherlands and sites like Alibaba and there is nothing I can do about it outside the U.S.