“Don’t Let the %$@#! Get You Down!” is Now on Display
By JENNIKA INGRAM | Reporter
Palisadians abound in a new art show on display at Topanga Canyon Gallery apropos to the pandemic called “Don’t Let the %$@#! Get You Down!”
The show runs until October 11, with an option for in-person viewing—with social distancing measures in place—on weekends between 12 and 5 p.m. and by appointment. It is also available to view online.
“Don’t Let the %$@#! Get You Down!” has been curated to “provide an avenue for thought, appreciation and concrete connection to other human beings,” according to a statement about the show. Artworks include nature in painting, photography and sculpture intended to soothe the soul.
“The people and places represented will warm your heart, and the stunning array of color will energize and calm you simultaneously,” the statement continued. “It’s been a year of questions and changing expectations. Many of your experiences are expressed by artists, with the words in this show. Your language and wishes—for comfort, for familiar, for challenge and hope—are expressed in a variety of styles and mediums by the talented artists exhibiting.”
Featured artist and Lower Las Casas resident Russell Hunziker shared that he works predominantly in representative landscapes, mostly of the local area, using an array of oil, acrylics and watercolor.
“Throughout my life, I’ve found great pleasure in wandering through the California landscape,” Hunziker shared in an artist statement.
Born in Bangor, Maine, Hunziker moved to the Palisades in 1986—the same year he got married. His dad was in the Air Force, so they moved around, but his mother’s family has been based in the Santa Barbara region since 1856.
“I have explored riparian valleys, hills and beaches of Santa Barbara to the Mojave deserts and mighty mountains of the Sierra Nevada,” he continued. “I hope to communicate what I see and, more importantly, what I feel.”
Hunziker has been painting for several decades and with Topanga Canyon Gallery for three years. Hunziker and his wife, Elisa, have raised two children in the Palisades, Lauren and Emily, who both attended the local schools: Paul Revere Charter Middle and Palisades Charter High schools. They are now in their 30s.
Hunziker is also a member of the Allied Artists of the Santa Monica Mountains and Seashore, which he referred to as a group of like-minded representational landscape painters that are “painting to preserving the Santa Monica Mountains and beaches” through art shows and free paint-outs, giving a percentage of profits to local and national parks and recreation areas.
Hunziker’s influences include California impressionist painters such as Granville Redmond, William Wendt and Edgar Payne, as well as contemporary painters David Gallup, Daniel Pinkham and Len Chmiel.
Other Palisadian artists in the show include Sunset Mesa resident Kit Plumridge, Kate Browning and Alphabet Streets resident Lois York.
Plumridge has two pieces in the show: signs of Malibu and Topanga Canyon.
“Ironically, I have found this time of separation and caution has forced me to become more reflective and meditative,” Plumridge shared with the Palisadian-Post. “These are attributes that most certainly have helped me in my creative process. I have embraced this period and situation to my artistic benefit.”
“Don’t Let the %$@#! Get You Down!” includes art for walls, as well as vibrant glass and ceramic pieces for shelves or tables. Topanga Canyon Gallery is located at 120 North Topanga Canyon Blvd.
“Individually and collectively we have lots of important things to think about and decisions to make right now. Serious things,” the statement concluded. “We need to find joy and beauty for balance. Art is a perfect channel to do that. Sure, we escape with our screens—but art provides an avenue for thought, appreciation and concrete connection to other human beings.”
For more information, visit topangacanyongallery.com.
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