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Jazz and Art on Friday

Brian Curley, Autumn Trees, acrylic, 48”x24” (cropped).

The “work-a-day world” is sometimes all that is seen and experienced when encountering people in their jobs.  The September exhibition of Gallery 625 aims to expose the artist behind the office worker in the “White Collar Craft” show of the artwork of two Yolo County Department of Social Services employees.

Brian Curley and Jane Thompson will be showing their paintings and drawings in this upcoming unique exhibition.   Both are primarily self-taught artists, using their time off the job to develop their unique perspectives. Curley and Thompson have been working at the Department of Social Services for the past thirty-two and twenty-three years, respectively, and Curley was responsible for hiring Thompson those many years ago.

Referring to himself as a self-taught artist, Curley studied art at both Sacramento City College and California State University, Sacramento and has been creating art for over the last forty-five years.

“I have been enjoying ‘waterfall hunting’ with my two children and family and you will see some of the results in this exhibit,” states Curley.  “I have balanced doing art with full time employment for many years, but it is now time for a change as I look to retirement at the end of this year, when I plan to spend a majority of my time creating new works to share.”

For her visual art pursuits, Thompson prefers the mediums of acrylics, watercolor, embroidery and collage.  Painting people is a favorite subject matter, as she describes how a lifetime can be “read” in someone’s face.  Thompson has also played the bass for most of her life and will offer an added bonus to the First Friday reception by performing with Jazz Gitan, a gypsy jazz trio, featuring her performance on the double bass.

As she reflects on a career at the Department of Social Services, as well as her pursuit as a visual and performing artist Thompson says, “My main job function has always been working with people of all ages and from all walks of life.  My music has opened many doors of opportunity and enabled me to help my clients in a much broader way.”

The exhibition’s opening reception will be held on Friday, September 2 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., coinciding with downtown Woodland’s First Friday Art Walk and will be attended by white collar workers and artists, Curley and Thompson.  Jazz Gitan will play a variety of standard jazz and gypsy jazz from 6:30-8:30.  In addition to Thompson, the trio features Don Price on lead guitar, and Ken Billeci on rhythm guitar.

Gallery 625, in the Erwin Meier Administration Building, 625 Court St. in Woodland has regular gallery viewing hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondaythrough Friday.  For additional information, call YoloArts at 530-406-4844, or visit the website at www.yoloarts.org.



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