By Sally Walsh
Art Critic 

Art Continues to Shine in Borrego Springs


Last updated 3/6/2023 at 10:13am

The Art Of Photography

ABF Annual Photo Contest Exhibit

Borrego Art Institute

The Art Of Photography show at the Borrego Art Institute main gallery is a breath taking showing of photography. This year the caliber of work is outstanding. Talented and acclaimed photographer Garett Wood shows a new direction in several sepia black and white works very much a departure from previous pieces shown at BAI. Each work was exceptional.

'Sendero,' captures shadows within shadows in the arid Sonoran Desert. The recessing water of the Pacific Ocean that forms a mesmerizing pattern of motion in, 'Mocion,' is a transporting photograph.

Very important in photography, for all art, Garett documents each of his pieces with a provenance description of how many limited editions he created of each image, how the pieces are mounted on museum board, protected with non glare glass, signed, numbered and dated. Invaluable to a collector to know what they are purchasing. I would hope Garett's statement of provenance can inspire fellow photographer's to think about taking the description of your artwork seriously. As works are sold they live on without the artist to tell their story/description. Works sold without any provenance remain somewhat anonymous, vague.

An epic, large, majestic, panoramic photograph, 'Fonts Point,' by Jerry Berkstresser, an early seller, is masterful. Everything one could possible want to have a spectacular memory of Fonts Point.

Particular personal favorite new artist Louise Russell shows three dreamy, very individualist works. Taking her photography into a painterly Impressionist direction.

Showing in the North Gallery is the annual Anza-Borrego Foundation's photography contest. This is an adjudicated show. This years talented judges were Sandy Zelasko, Kay Levie, Roger Guzman, and Garett Wood.

ABF hosts this contest annually to highlight the life and beauty of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. Apart of their mission is the hope that the photography will educate and inspire future advocates for this unique parkland taking a closer look through the lens of the photographer. The show documents photographically a comprehensive, visual experience of every aspect of flora and fauna, landscapes and people in the park. The price range is extremely approachable with a range of outstanding imagery to select a photographic treasure from Borrego while also supporting the park.

People Enjoying The Park section First Place winner, 'See That Peak There,' by John Straw was a favorite. Chris Maust, first place winner Landscapes Of Anza Borrego, Shamanic Visions, is a stunning compositional photograph linking the present to the pre historic wall paintings.

Show runs through the end of the month.

Quiet Sky Dolphin Mind

The House Of Borrego Springs West Gallery-Hacienda Del Sol Lobby Gallery

Organized and Curated by artist/ teacher Jake Freilich. Presented by The Candlewood Festival and Under The Sun Foundation an exhibition of paintings, sculptures and photographs by students from Borrego Springs Middle and High School.

The young artists collectively created the theme for the exhibition of dreams, nightmares, fantasies, inspiration.

The show is an assemblage of details from the student's actual dreams. Curated in an extremely minimal way without any wall tags as it is more of an exhibition than a focus on the art selling. Jake expressed that wall tags take away from the viewing experience. All works were excellent. Some outstanding works by Orlando Flores two welded sculpture's Bottle Tree 1 & 2 showing in the outdoor courtyard. Orlando has a vivid imagination adding colored bottles to the tree branches. A very well constructed sculpture making for a conversational work.

Another sculpture stood out in the West Gallery by Angel Vilchis Pantoja, 'Ocotillo,' impressive and accomplished welding.

Naylea Villareal's imaginative, 'Final Fantasy,' oil painting takes us on a dreamy adventure from an usual perspective.

The students Inkjet photography collection at the Hacienda Del Sol shows seven outstanding works all featuring exciting, innovative, creativity. Showing closes on Sunday, February 26.

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