by RENEE PATRICK, Cascade A&E Editor
The Signature artwork for the Deschutes Children’s Foundation’s (DCF) Art & Wine Auction on May 3, Cindy Brigg’s Terrazza in Toscana, ties together multiple ideas of home. Home is what the artist feels at her retreat in Tuscany, Italy, where a landscape of rolling hills and vineyards brings to mind her local view of the expansive Cascade Mountains, and home is at the core of the Deschutes Children’s Foundation’s annual fundraiser as it enables the organization to provide a home for 28 nonprofit partners around the high desert.
“Cindy was so willing to support us, I have admired her work and knew she would be able to create something special,” commented DCF’s Development Director Amy Ward.
The artist has supported the Foundation’s mission with both artwork and monetary donations since 2002 and holds the mission close to her heart. “The Deschutes Children’s Foundation from the very beginning has been at the top of my list for what they do for the community, I personally know children that have benefited,” Briggs explained.
“I have an amazing view of the Cascades from my home in Bend. I feel peace and serenity here, and I also felt at home in Tuscany…Italy continues to beckon me – the luminescent light, old world architecture, welcoming locals and beautiful landscapes are an artist’s dream,” she shared.
Briggs brings a lifetime of artistic influence to her work and has created a career surrounding her passion in which travel creates the framework for much of her art.
She enjoys painting alla prima (in one sitting) and take advantage of the spontaneity that watercolor invites. “My painting method is a bit serendipitous – mixing, mingling and manipulating the colors for subtle nuances and unexpected color transitions, then add calligraphy and finesse the edges. After I’ve started a painting I may paint non-stop into the night completely unaware of the time,” Briggs explained. “Watercolor inspires my soul – like life – the more I make the most of its unpredictable qualities the more interesting it becomes. With each painting my goal is to reverently capture the essence of my subject and infuse it with dynamic color and light.”
A recent cancer survivor, Briggs has embraced the simple joy of painting and the peace it has brought into her life. “Now that I’m a survivor it’s a part of who I am, and I want people to know that there is hope…The painting Terrazza in Toscana has a sense of hope for me.” The turmoil of the disease has led her to follow her heart and to paint what she truly cares about: the time that she has and the value of life.
“We feel blessed to be able to honor Cindy as the Signature Artist,” said Kim McNamer, DCF executive director. “She has been extremely generous beyond the Signature piece, offering guidance and other help. The generosity of the artists continues to be the key to the success of the auction.”
by Renee Patrick, Cascade A&E Editor
It was the love of dance that drove Carolyn Brant to found the Terpsichorean Dance Studio & Company almost 40 years ago, and through her passion generations of dancers have come to exemplify the spirit of Terpsichorean.
Named for Terpsichore, one of the nine muses of Greek mythology meaning “delight in dancing,” the studio has grown from its humble beginnings in the basement of Brant’s home, to a beautiful 2,000 square foot space on Newport Avenue.
“I had danced all my life,” Brant explained, “and when I moved to Bend there were no dance studios.” She drew on her years of private study in Eugene and a college career in dance, choreography and dance education at Stephens College in Missouri and the University of Oregon, to open the doors of Terpsichorean in 1975.
Brant had six students for her first class, two of them her own children. “I had a little area down in the basement of the house we lived in, and I started teaching there,” she explained. “The next year I had probably 12 or 15 students, and every year after that it kept growing.”
She continued teaching in her remodeled garage for 20 years before buying the property on Newport Avenue in 1995. “My big success was finding that property at a perfect time,” she said. “We needed to grow.”
At the start Brandt taught ballet and tap, and as she became familiar with other dancers and teachers, she grew her staff and classes offered. Currently students of all ages can learn ballet, point, lyrical/contemporary, tap, jazz, hip hop, modern, creative movement and tumbling classes.
“Two of my teachers have been with me almost 20 years,” she said. “I have a really dedicated staff who have all either been with me for years or grew up in the studio.”
Brandt has given her all over the years and has decided it is time to slow things down a bit and retire. She is selling the studio to Dakota Weeda, a former student and current teacher who has grown up at Terpsichorean.
by JEFF SPRY Cascade A&E Feature Writer
Born on the Fourth of July brings with it a certain patriotic promise of future greatness in bold hues and harmonies. For ex-pro athlete and artist Todd Marinovich, that primrose path has been punctuated by the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.
Now baptized in the Cascade crescendos of Central Oregon’s high desert, the Rose Bowl winning former National Football League (NFL) quarterback, ultimately turned mesmerizing multimedia artist, Marinovich finds solace and salvation in the region’s natural beauty, fusing those images with themes of mortality, hero worship and transcendence.
Recently resurrected and freshly fortified with a wife, Alix, and two small children, Marinovich has settled into his mercurial roles as husband, father and artist amid a wealth of captivating scenery, expressing memories, regrets and triumphs on the blank canvas.
Finally free of the substance abuse and legal entanglements that precipitated his temporary plunge, Marinovich is diving into his artistic career with relish and unabashed enthusiasm.
“I started loving art at a young age,” he recalls. “I remember it being the highlight of my schools days. Early on it was P.E. and art and both those periods went by in a flash. And that’s when you know where the magic happens, when time is non-existent, and I was lucky to find two passions in sports and art. Those were my first drugs, really, and that’s what drugs do, put you in the moment where time is not a factor.”
Marinovich moved to Sisters last November and was drawn to the area because it was the “true Oregon” and had experienced the area over the years growing up and later in life. An astute student of the arts, he’s fascinated with movement and color in all their inexpressible forms and incarnations. In 2005 he met an influential artist named Jerome Gastaldi in Fallbrook, California.
“He had this killer art compound and he just blew my mind. Everything about his style and perception was incredible. He taught me there are no mistakes in life and art and in the act of painting he was utilizing a method of abstraction I’d seen, but never really absorbed or appreciated it until I saw the process.”
The Tower’s Transition from 1940 to 2004
by RENEE PATRICK Cascade A&E Editor
The Tower Theatre’s history is a rocky one. What started as a movie theatre in the growing mill town of 1940, fell into disrepair decades later, forcing the doors to close. New life was to come however, and through the efforts of a capitol campaign, millions were raise for the restoration of the iconic piece of Bend’s cultural history.
Movie fever came to the high desert in 1940 when the Tower Theatre was first completed. Built in only three months, the original construction included imported travertine marble from Italy, a women’s lounge on the mezzanine floor embellished with knotty pine and a seating capacity of 998. The Tower rose 78 feet above the street and cast a glow with its 1,200 feet of neon tubes of green and gold.
The popular movie Four Wives opened the doors to the first movie-goers and ushered in an era of first-run shows ranging from Disney cartoons to news, shorts and feature films. Primarily a cinema, the performing arts took to the stage from time to time and in 1948 the Theatre added a weekly amateur hour, fashion shows, variety shows and even a performance by the General Platoff Don Cossack chorus from Russia.
The Theatre couldn’t keep pace when multi-screen theatres came to the high desert, and when the owners, a large movie theatre chain, choose not to invest in any up-keep or renovation, the doors closed. A partnership came forward in 1994 and purchased the Theatre. Win and Laurel Francis, Michael and Pat Forman, and Bruce and Sandi Hinchliffe wanted to redevelop the space for retail and office use.
“We thought it would be better for commercial use,” Win Francis recalled, “other people thought it could be a performing arts theatre…ultimately it was the best use for the community, not necessarily financially!” The partnership quickly became invested in the idea of a public theatre when the idea was presented, and with the goal of gauging the demand for a theatre, gave the Regional Arts Council of Central Oregon a discounted lease to operate as a multi-purpose venue.
Thousands of people visited the Tower Theatre over the next two years despite continued disrepair and lack of heat. In 1995 the City of Bend purchased the building and agreed to hold the property until a private non-profit organization could purchase, restore and operate the Theatre, but once again deterioration forced the doors to close in 1996 until the changes could be made.
by RENEE PATRICK Cascade A&E Editor
It all starts with a story. An epic snowboarding season on Mt. Bachelor turns into Snow Monkeys, a tale of a girl and her dog turns into The Collectors and a favorite Christmas movie and memories of being bundled up and unable to move turns into Randy. Each illustration Taylor Rose begins already has a detailed story behind it, and the results are whimsical forays into the playfulness of nature and an invitation to the viewer to create their own story.
Illustrator Taylor Rose moved to Bend late last year with her boyfriend, Tim Jones, after both graduated from art school. Jones is an artist and illustrator as well, but works with a slightly different subject matter, “He likes the horror genre. It’s funny to see our studio, there are foxes and puppies and then a zombie or monster,” Rose said with a laugh.
“We didn’t know anyone in Oregon or Bend, and that’s how we wanted it,” she said. “We wanted something new; we came down McKenzie Pass and that alone blew me away. I’m a pretty avid snowboarder, and seeing the Cascades was exciting to me. There is something really special about Bend. The people and every scene is inspiring.”
Rose taps into the child-like wonder of her upbringing in a small New Hampshire town when she places pen to paper; exploring the forest, mountains and beaches instilled a creative spirit that pays homage to nature, adventures and animals, and her family was pivotal in nurturing that passion from the very beginning when she used to sell them her early art for a nickel or dime.
“I have been drawing since I was about two with crayons and pencils, and it continued through middle school and high school when I decided to pursue art in college,” she explained. “It was in college that I really found my style and thought, ‘This is it, this is what I want to do and have to do.’”
Her mediums of pen, ink and watercolor took on a deeper meaning once she took a class on children’s books. Discovering the art of storytelling, she knew in each piece she created she wanted there to be a story. In fact, it needed to lead the creation. Many of her illustrations start with short stories she has written herself or inspirations from childhood cartoons. “Each illustration begins with my imagination, which thrives in being surrounded by nature, wildlife, cartoons and comics,” she explained.
In addition to watching a lot of cartoons, she looks to other creatives like digital artist Brett Bean and early 20th century watercolorist Edmund Dulac for insight. “Dulac is one of the first people to tell children’s stories through art, it’s pretty inspirational. Bean does a lot of concept work on animation and cartoons and I love everything that Laika does (an animation studio that produced recent movies like ParaNorman).