JAMES CRAIG PHOTOGRAPHY

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Artist Dave DeRan's Spring Open House

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Whoever said an artist's art blog or journal has to be all about his own work? That would just be no fun at all. Last fall we were all set to attend Dave DeRan's open house/open studio event and instead we had to stay home with me down with a very bad 24 hour bug. Very disappointing. The upside was that at least we didn't spend any money. If you don't show up, you can't feed your habit.

 This time I decided to try and cover the event, give a little bit of an idea of what these unique events alr all about. Sort of Have iPhone, will Travel – if that one's lost on you, it's a play on the old TV western Have Gun, will Travel. Unfortunately I then got distracted and took very few shots. It was a veritable turtle-fest.

     We would up getting the little piece above, a small watercolor in an extremely ornate frame – total size only 15x17 inches. Dave always uses used frames, scouring yard sales and similar sources in rural Pennsylvania. They just seem to work on his art – lucky bum. This one has green felt along the sides and bottom for a liner – missing on the top so he painted it to match. We liked a couple of larger pieces but kept coming back to this one – between nipping at food, wine and coffee. The combination of understated art and old framing makes it an interesting, if tricky to find the right spot to hang, addition to our collection.

     We've found from experience in situations like this that it doesn't pay to hesitate too long. The danger is that you will come back to get it and find an empty place on the wall. Been there all too often on that regret. And, if you really like it and can't find a place to hang it where it works, it will always make a great Christmas or other gift for family or friend. We've found that gifts of good art pieces that we've picked up wind up being treasured hangings that we can visit.

     But that won't be happening to this little gem. Nan found a way to shift things around and put it in the kitchen area where it gets the light it needs.

     We have other DeRan pieces, but the three folkart paintings below are our pride and joys. This is our kitchen wall, directly across from the counter, sink and appliances. It's a long wall so they are good sized pieces. The painted platter is also a DeRan, temporarily taking the place of a large Lyon Clay platter being used for something more practical right now. As far as the other stuff, there's a story behind each and every one.

Below is a view looking down from upstairs in Dave's studio. their place is a museum of their collected and created pieces.

 

     The large 3D piece on the right is a little of a mystery to me. It felt like wood, but is far too light for that. I meant to ask, but Dave was simply too busy to tie him down in conversation – I'll make sure and ask him nex week when I see him – and then update this post. But, whatever it is, it's kind of magnificent. I'm sure he will find a good home soon because the price very reasonable. If interested – and if it isn't already gone – contact Dave and Roxanne on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/roxanne.deran