Friday, January 18, 2013

Art finds unusual home in La Mesa exhibit

On the south side of El Cajon Boulevard, right on the border of La Mesa and San Diego, there's this two-story 1970's office building. You could drive past it 1,000 times never cast a second thought in its direction. It's home to the La Mesa Biz Center, a small business incubator where entrepreneurs can sign up for office space, a conference room or just a mailing address.
But Midge Hyde, a visual artist and retired art teacher, promises something very cool is afoot in that space. A few times a year, she gathers together work from local artists and displays the pieces in the hallways, offices and conference rooms.

Saturday evening she's kicking off "Configuration," which runs from Jan. 19 through April 1. The event, located at 7317 El Cajon Blvd., will run from 6:30 to 9 p.m. and feature art, food and wine. On display will be works of Julian Charter School students, as well as from adult artists working in a variety of media. 

"I'm trying to be open to a lot of ideas of what art is," Hyde said. "I like branching out to different kinds of art, from collage to found objects. I like to see the variety."
Hyde said that while San Diego has plenty of permanent and makeshift spaces for exhibiting art, there is still potential for developing East County's visual arts venues. The business center may not be an obvious choice for displaying art, but she said the interior walls work well, and the artists will benefit from regular foot traffic after the opening.
Hyde has planned three shows for 2013. The next, on the topic of "Possibilities," will run April 20 to July 1.
Mugshot of Roxana Popescu

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

From La Mesa Today

Exhibit Probes The Placement Of Things
LA MESA -- Adding to the pulse of the growing La Mesa art scene are the smart, quarterly shows being curated by Midge Hyde at the Biz Center Art Gallery. An outpost of progress on an unassuming stretch of La Mesa's El Cajon Boulevard, Hyde's gallery will host a reception this Saturday evening to celebrate the opening of "Configuration."
The show, which is presented in the public spaces of a shared business center, will include the work of local professional artists mixed in with the surprising work of students.
The work of science and art Students from the Julian Charter School will be part of "Configuration," featuring the work they produced in response to "Wonder" by R.J. Palacio.
"Students were prompted to write down their current values and then also write goals for their future; next they translated this introspection into metaphors and used the metaphors in their art work,'' said JCS teacher Richard Rogalski. "They were allowed to use any media they liked and the results are fantastic!''
Among the local artists whose work won a place in the show are:
Kent R Kraber Kent R Kraber passion for metal fabrications has brought him acclaim showcasing his sculptures. He has been accepted to show his work throughout Southern California including Manhattan Beach, Biz Center Art and The Port of San Diego, the latter of which bought his Fantasy Dragon Sculpture as permanent collection.
Midge Hyde Midge Hyde, curator/director of Biz Center Art is a graduate of SDSU in Liberal Arts/ Fine Arts and is also a National Honor Society member. She is currently exhibiting her art in Chula Vista, Pacific Beach and La Mesa.
Clifford L Smith A true realist from detailed illustrations to fanciful underwater scenes, Smith has been doing art for a long time. He has a keen eye for infinite details.
Wendy Kwasney Think Lucian Freud and you see her perceptive art work. Kwasney got her BA in Art from SDSU exhibits at the Museum of Living Artist as well as Biz Center Art.
Brita Hyde Brita Hyde is from Hamburg, Germany originally and has a degree in Architecture from the University of Hamburg. Her vibrate colors and playful style always make her art work stand out.
Patty Palenschat Patty Palenschat graduated with a BA in Fine Art from UCLA. She creates a wide range of realistic sculptures. She has sensitivity to the appearance and personality of her subjects. Exhibited in Art Walk, Liberty Station, and has numerous commissions.
Candace Knowlan Candace Knowlan has a degree in cultural anthropology. After experimenting in other media she has found her joy in photography.
Michael Nixon Michael Nixon local self taught artist, multi faceted from abstract to his present project: Children's art connected to his own stories.
Joel Ortiz Joel Ortiz is a local photographer and video expert, commercial and fine art photography.  Teaching video at SDSU, American Language Institute.
The opening reception for "Configuration: The Relative Arrangement Of Elements Within A Space" is Saturday, Jan. 19 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Biz Center Art is located at 7317 El Cajon Boulevard, in La Mesa.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Preview some of the art for our next show

We probably shouldn't but we're so excited about the artists in our Configuration show we wanted to show off a little.  Here is a mask by Dottie Korn Davis and below is a link to a few of the other artists' pieces. Just a taste...

Of course you still need to come to the gallery and see them all -- and meet the artists on January 19th.

The Reception is 6:30-9:00 p.m.  See you there?

Configuration Photos

Configuration Opening Reception January 19, 2013

A Biz Center Art reception and sale of exceptional new art happens Saturday, January 19th, at the usual 6:30 starting time. Not only are we presenting some great art but also great food from Haritna Restaurant, two doors down. As a bonus, some fabulously creative student artists from JCS San Diego Academy will show work from their Monuments Project using symbols representing their goals in life. An exciting show overall.

Configuration Information:

  • Biz Center Art:7317 El Cajon Boulevard, La Mesa, CA 91942
  • Opening Reception: Sat. Jan. 19 from 6:30-9:00 p.m.
  • Please see: Facebook Event Page
  • Gallery hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mon-Fri or by appointment
  • For more information:

Midge Hyde is showing at:

Cosmos Coffee (8278 La Mesa Blvd. La Mesa) in January. Please enjoy the display, great food and fair trade coffee any day the establishment is open -- normally til 8 or 9pm.

I hope to ring in the New Year with you at the Configuration Opening Reception!

Midge Hyde, Gallery Director

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Artist Submissions for Configuration

Hello Artists!

Today is the last day to submit art for Configuration.  We are accepting art from 3-6 pm today (Jan. 3).  You will also need a form to submit.  Here is the Artist Form.


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Artist Submission info for Possibilities

Artists!  It's not too soon to think about submitting to our next show.  We accept work from all artists and we ask that you submit work that fits our loosely-defined theme.  Submitting to the next show is easy...  All you need to do is:
  • Read this post for most details
  • Select five (or more) art works that fit our theme
  • Download the Artist Form and Contract here
  • Complete the Form/Contract
  • Deliver the Form/Contract, with your art on one of the two Drop Off Dates/times listed below
  • Ask as many questions as you like of our Gallery Director Midge Hyde (contact info. below)

Name of Show: Possibilities 
Theme: Whatever may be possible in the creative mind
Drop off Date(s)/Time(s): Tue. April 2 & Wed. April 3 from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Opening Reception Date and Time: Saturday, April 20 from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m.
Art Retrieval I (not chosen for the show): Thurs. April 4 from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Art Retrieval II (art not sold in the show):    July 2 from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Contact Midge Hyde with questions at:
Telephone, 619-466-3711 

Look who was nominated as La Mesan of the year!

Biz Center's own Midge Hyde! See below for more...

Seven Of La Mesa's Best For 2012
LA MESA -- In a general election year, you might expect to see politicians rise in importance in the community. But this year's nominees for La Mesan of the Year might be described as heroes rising from ashes of challenging political times.
Educators lead the list.
Imagine working in education these days. Sacramento is in turmoil, beset by a struggling economy and a political environment that puts the state government in the role of doling out distasteful medicine state-wide. Schools get a double dose. You are slashing teachers, cutting salaries and raising class sizes at the very moment that educational technology is demanding innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit.
So the first nominee for La Mesan of the year is really a group of four who contribute much to the life of this city. The four are:
  • Brian Marshall, Superintendent of the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District, who has had to travel to work for many months now with a heavy heart. Despite massive layoffs and the relocation of the sixth grades to reduce costs, Marshall managed to keep the train on the tracks so far. Even in its darkest hours, his board managed to balance the budget, keep parents positive and engaged and has launched a self-analysis to consider establishing magnet schools within the district. Other districts, facing such obstacles, have simply turtled and hung on for dear life.
  • Christina Callaway and Mitchell Miller, co-directors of College Preparatory Middle School. Though neither of these young educators sleep in La Mesa each night, both have contributed a leadership during their day times among us to be considered for this honor. Starting a charter school targeting the challenging middle school years at the height of a crisis in education funding may have been considered folly by some, yet Callaway and Miller have managed to tap the energies of a local church community and have in two years added school uniforms, no-frills facilities and test scores that have put a La Mesa school into territory usually dominated by wealthier school communities in Poway and Rancho Bernardo. College Preparatory Middle School's early success may have, at least subliminally, inspired the La Mesa-Spring Valley District to consider adding magnet programs.
  • Dr. Mark Arapostathis. No offense to his work on the City Council, but it is Arapostathis' long-time role in education that earns him a spot on this year's La Mesa of the Year nominee's list. In a time when school district funding forced more and more facets of traditional education to be pushed from the schools, Arapostathis, both a second-grade teacher and director of the Peter Pan Jr. Theater and C-Hook Theater groups, continued showing what one, energetic and entrepreneurial person can do to fill in the gaps. Arapostathis and his team have kept the arts as an important part of adolescent life for hundreds of families and Arapostathis has also used creative techniques in his classroom to help he and his parents adjust to larger class sizes and the ever-increasing range of student he finds before him each year. Check out Arapostathis' interactive class website and his C-Hook and Peter Pan sites to see how he has extended educational efforts beyond his classroom.
Beyond education, other La Mesans were making notable contributions to the fabric of the Jewel of the Hills:
  • Yvonne Garrett carries the sort of title in La Mesa City Hall that usually keeps her in the background. Assistant City Managers and Community Service Directors -- she plays both roles -- are usually like good referees; they are doing their best jobs when they are not noticed and stay quietly out of the limelight. But in the months leading up to the City's Centennial Year and throughout this year, Garrett has managed to organize an army of community volunteers, while building excitement -- and attendance. Almost monthly, Centennial events have involved a wide range of community members and helped remind us all of what makes La Mesa a jewel. If she is not toasted publicly at the Centennial-ending "Party of the Century" gala, she is here. Well done Ms. Garrett.
  • Midge Hyde is the sort of tireless promoter for the arts that makes a big difference in a small town. She needed that spirit fully in 2012 as she endeavored to redefine the term "art gallery" while also contributing to a revival of a traditionally challenged part of La Mesa. If you haven't yet visited Hyde's Biz Art Center on El Cajon Boulevard, you're missing a truly refreshing effort to both support local artists but also demonstrate the way art can enrich us all. No stuffy, brie-filled urbane enclave tucked away in an arts ghetto for Ms. Hyde. She has managed to enrich every day life with the arts in a new and innovative effort worth checking out.
  • Police Chief Ed Aceves took office at a time when armed robberies at convenience stores seemed as regular as sunny days in La Mesa. While some locals were clamoring for the hiring of "an outsider" to bring new blood into the force, Aceves, who has spent his career in La Mesa, quickly rearranged his leadership team, made out-reach to the community a priority and has impressed even his doubters. Crime rates continue to fall and arrests in "stop and rob" cases have become more frequent. If economic pressures continue to promote public safety consolidation, Aceves and his troops are clearly making a strong argument for the status quo.
The final winner of this year's La Mesan of the Year will be announced on on New Year's Day.