Would it be too cheeky to say I’m grateful for art?
With St. Louis as my home town, art has always been part of my life. One Christmas I bought art from Central West End vendors for all of my adult siblings. I’ve spent many hours in the Museum there and both the Kemper and the Nelson here.
Until Penny Thieme started the VALA Gallery / Community, I thought of art as painting, drawing, and maybe, certain photography. VALA stands for “visual, audio and literary art”. Penny drew me into the real concept of art as comprising painting, drawing, music, photography, sculpting, woodwork, and even, yes, folks: writing.
I’ve been a VALA volunteer for six years and have taught workshops there. VALA has been forced to (temporarily) abandon a physical space having been forced out of practical existence by the interminable Johnson Drive construction. But the Community thrives. Seven of its artists showed their work at the Holiday Open House at my office last evening, reminding me just how much I depend on human-constructed beauty to feed my soul along with the glories of nature.
Their works will be on display until the end of February. If you’d like to see them, call me at 816-753-5556. Five of the artists have pieces on my art page, which you can find at: First Fridays @ Suite 100. Or spend an afternoon at the Kemper or a local gallery. I’m willing to bet that you will be grateful, too.