Thai artists offer 'Two Visions of Dharma' at the Cantor Center

Oakland Tribune, Jan 18, 2007 by Bonny Zanardi

WORK by two of Thailand's most important living artists is on view at the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University. "Visions of Dharma: Thai Contemporary Art" features Kamol Tassananchalee and Thawan Duchanee.

Kamol's work

Each has been awarded the "National Artist" title, an honor which the Thai government presents to only one artist, poet or author a year. While their work is firmly rooted in traditional Thai culture and Buddhism, it is decidedly contemporary.

Their subjects range from the human struggle to control innermost passions and desires to ecological issues and the devastation visited by the recent tsunami. The artists take different approaches.

Duchanee, who lives in Thailand and was the first Thai artist to gain an international reputation, uses dream-like images of people and mythical animals to depict Buddhist and psychological themes.

Tassananchalee works in genres from naturalistic landscapes to abstractions, his imagery coming from his dreams. He makes subtle references to political and Buddhist themes in his works. He is a graduate of the Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles, where he still lives.

Thawan's work

In conjunction with the exhibition, a free lecture on "Buddhist Art: From Antiquity to the 21st Century" will be given by independent scholar Kristina Youso Jan. 25. It begins at 6 p.m. in the Cantor Arts Center Auditorium. Co-sponsored by the Stanford Center for Buddhist Studies and the Asian Religions and Cultures Initiative and the Cantor, the talk will focus on essential themes and visual symbols in Buddhist art.

"Two Visions of Dharma: Thai Contemporary Art" continues through March 4. The Cantor Arts Center is off Palm Drive at Museum Way on the Stanford campus in Palo Alto. Admission is free. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays, with evening hours until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. Call (650) 723-4177 or visit http:// museum.stanford.edu.

Goines posters

The Redwood City Art Center is showing work by David Lance Goines through the end of February. Goines, an artist and writer, has won numerous awards for his work including the 1983 American Book Award for "A Constructed Roman Alphabet."

He founded Saint Hieronymus Press in Berkeley in 1968. He is still there, designing work and printing it by letterpress and photo- offset lithography. Goines has exhibited his work nationally and internationally and lectures nationally as well.

Goines' work is held in a number of collections, including the Achenbach Foundation for the Graphic Arts, Palace of the Legion of Honor, Smithsonian Institution, Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Musee de la Publicite at the Louvre.

He has donated signed posters to seventh-grade student Erin Levis, who attends Rolling Hills Middle School in Los Gatos. His gift will help Erin earn money to take a British and Irish heritage trip with the People to People Foundation. The foundation, founded in 1956 by President Eisenhower, nominates students to become student ambassadors to travel all around the world to represent the United States.

The artwork will be on display in the Redwood City Art Center's front windows through the end of February. All posters will be on sale. The center is at 2625 Broadway, Redwood City. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. Call (650) 369- 4096.

Mark Jurasin exhibit

The Peninsula Arts Council presents "Earthlines," paintings by Mark Jurasin, at the Caldwell Gallery in Redwood City. The collection of works expresses the spatial relationship of land, sea and sky.

His abstract paintings conjure a moment in time or a memory infused with emotion and energy. "As a Bay Area painter, my goal is to create paintings that move you," Jurasin says. He seeks to create "not just gestural meanderings, but multi-layered, spiritual and visually arresting images."

For Jurasin, painting is "a little like standing on the edge of a precipice, or on a tightrope, trying to maintain control while keeping the whole image before me fluid, forcing an alive, of-the- moment balancing act."

Jurasin is a graduate of the California College of the Arts. He spent his career primarily in advertising. For several years he was a corporate art director. He owned his own advertising agency for 10 years.

"Earthlines" will be on view through Feb. 28. The Caldwell Gallery is at 400 County Center, Redwood City. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Call 650) 591-2101.

All about chocolate

"Free Chocolate," an exhibition by April Banks, is a full-room installation with video, photography and sculpture. It's on view at Intersection for the Arts in San Francisco through Feb. 17.

This is the first solo exhibition for Banks, who is an Oakland- based artist. "Free Chocolate" explores cocoa's global journey from farmer to trader to chocolate lover, illuminating our desire for beauty, sweetness, indulgence and intoxication, all within the context of issues of globalism, fair trade and sustainability.

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