Thursday, January 31, 2008

"Almost, Maine" on stage in Laramie

The University of Wyoming Department of Theatre and Dance will present the romantic comedy "Almost, Maine," Feb. 9-14 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 10, at 2 p.m. in the Fine Arts Center Studio Theatre in Laramie.

Tickets cost $14 for the public, $11 for seniors (60 and older) and $7 for students.

The play, written by John Cariani, focuses on the pursuit of love or something like it among the lonely inhabitants of a remote northern town in Maine's potato country. Professor Leigh Selting directs the play.

Cariani, a Tony-nominated actor, is known for his work in "Fiddler on the Roof" and on "Law & Order." The play originally debuted in 2004 and then became an off-Broadway hit, receiving rave reviews for its offbeat and often poignant take on life and love in a small town. The play takes place in a fictional town in Maine where, in nine quirky vignettes, the love-starved residents fall in and out of love in surprising and hilarious ways.

For tickets, call (307) 766-6666 or visit

2008 Western Spirit Art Show & Sale

The Cheyenne Frontier Days Old West Museum hosts this 2008 show and sale beginning March 1 through April 13. Many opening events take place on Saturday, March 1. Among those --

Artist Development Seminar from 8:45-3:30. Lunch will be provided. Cost is $30 for museum members, $40, non-members. Workshops throughout the day include

8:45-9:30 -- Vaqueros, A Figurative History -- with Contemporary Western Oil Painter Paul Kethley

9:45-10:30 -- Marketing 101 with Southwest Art -- with Kimberly Moore, Southwest Arts' Rocky Mountain Fine Art Sales Manager

10:45-11:30 -- The Making of a Bronze with Gerald Balciar

11:45-12:30 -- Western Art Show Address -- lunch with speaker Kay Jessen of the Western Art Show

12:45 -- 1:30 -- Local Spotlight -- Cheyenne wildlife artist Brandon Bailey

1:45-2:30 -- Going Digital -- with professional rodeo photographer Matt Idler

2:45-3:30 -- Plein Air Impact on Studio Work -- with Tom Lockhart

5:30 p.m. on Saturday March 1 -- opening reception including the Vandewark Miniature show. Opens at 5:00 p.m. for members only, 5:30 p.m. general public

Quick Draw takes place from 7-8 p.m. on March 1. Six artists create a finished piece of art in 45 minutes to be auctioned off after the awards ceremony.

McColl Center for Visual Art invites applicants

McColl Center for Visual Art's "Artist-in-Residence Program for Regional, National and International Artists" in North Carolina invites applications. Deadline is May 5. Fall 2009 and Winter 2010 sessions available. Private studios, $2,000 materials budget, $3,300 stipend provided. 24-hour access to fully-equipped metal and wood shops, media lab, darkroom, printmaking, sculpture, and ceramic studios. Paid travel and condominiums for artists outside of the Charlotte, N.C., area.

Application guidelines are on the on web site at

FMI: Claudia Gonzalez-Griffin, or 704-332-5535.

"Just Nudes" opening reception Feb. 1 (Gallery of the Northern Front) announces the opening of its "Just Nudes" Open Art Show at Night Heron Books, 107 Ivinson Ave., Laramie. A reception will be held on Friday, Feb. 1, 6-8 p.m., at Night Heron. This exhibit runs through the end of February. The opening event is free and open to the public. Food and refreshments provided.

Artists featured in the exhibit: Terry R. Reid, Jared W. Wood, Amy Irish, Jon Madsen, Mack Brislawn, Dillon T Roland, West Magoon, Barry O’Riley, Anthony Guzzo, Kathryn Culver, Dennis Fonfara, Raymond Jordan, Linda Lillegraven, Bruce Allemani, Ken Koschnitzki.

Exhibitor’s statement: Organizers hope for a good turnout at the opening, but are sensitive to the nature of the work. “It is our belief that there’s nothing outrageous in the content of this show. The whole purpose of the exhibition is to give artists in this area a place to show work that is not typically shown in local establishments; however, so that there is no confusion, please be advised: this is an art exhibition showcasing the works of artists who portray the human form in a natural way, and therefore, it may not be suitable for all audiences.”

Contact: Terry R. Reid, 307-399-2777; Ken Koschnitzki, 1-888-742-9028. Web site:

Pictured above: “Heather 6” by Terry R. Reid

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Call for entries: High Plains Book Awards

Corby Skinner sends this announcement from Billings, Mont.:

The Parmly Billings Library, in affiliation with the High Plains Book Award Committee, is pleased to announce it is now accepting nominations for the second annual High Plains Book Awards.

Four prizes will be awarded: Best Book in two categories -- Fiction and Non Fiction; Best First Book; and an Emeritus Award.

Presentations will be made during the sixth annual High Plains BookFest, "The Call of the Wild," Oct. 17-18 in Billings, Montana.

Nominated books must have been published in 2007 and written by a regional author or writing team, and/or be a literary work which examines and reflects life on the High Plains. The High Plains region includes Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Nominated books may be fiction, non-fiction or poetry. All submissions must have an ISBN number to be considered.

Nominations are also being accepted for an Emeritus Award which recognizes a body of work by a regional author and/or writing team which has made a significant contribution to the literature of the High Plains region.

Information on past recipients and the complete nomination forms may be obtained on the High Plains Book Award website:

Nominations must be postmarked and or hand-delivered to: Bill Cochran, Director, Parmly Billings Library, 510 North Broadway, Billings, MT 59101 on or before April 1, 2008.

For more information on the High Plains BookFest, "The Call of the Wild," e-mail Corby Skinner,

Young Writers' Camp June 7-14 in Story

Micah Wyatt sends this news about this summer's Young Writers' Camp:

The 18th annual session of the Sheridan Young Writers Camp will take place from June 7-14 in Story, Wyoming. This program is sponsored by the Sheridan Arts Council and by Sheridan College. The camp accepts young writers ages 14-18 who wish to sharpen their skills in poetry, fiction (including sci-fi and speculative fiction), non-fiction, screenwriting, and critique. The teachers are Jesse Loesberg, Danica Wyatt, and Micah Wyatt, who all are working and accomplished writers and writing teachers.

Jesse has an M.F.A. in writing, has published several poems and essays, has a novel in the works, and is a contributor to local radio shows. Jesse's teaching credits include the Academy of Art University of San Francisco, The Writing Salon, Portland Adult Education, and the Oak Bluffs School on Martha's Vineyard.

Danica has a Ph.d. in physics from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., and has taught creative and non-fiction writing at UC Santa Cruz and in Sheridan.

Camp Director Micah Wyatt has an M.F.A. in creative writing and is a law student at the University of Wyoming. He has published fiction, non-fiction, and poetry, teaches writing classes and groups for all ages, and is a former national championship winning coach of speech and debate at Sheridan College, and is in a blues/jazz duo which tours and plays in Wyoming and Colorado.

In addition to writing, the camp provides a memorable experience in art, communal living, music, hiking, cooking, movement, and improvisational acting. Participants sleep in tents on the grounds, but there is also a large lodge building with showers, restroom facilities, and kitchen where many group activities, including meals, take place. Tuition for the week is $250.

To apply, campers should send a letter stating age, grade in school, reasons for wanting to attend the program, address, and telephone number. Please indicate in this letter if financial aid is requested. The application should also include a short writing sample. This sample may be a short story, several poems, or an academic essay. Excerpts of longer works are acceptable. Letters of application must be post-marked no later than May 1, 2008.

Please mail all application materials to:
Sheridan Young Writers Camp, c/o Micah Wyatt
410 S. Thurmond
Sheridan, WY 82801

Applications will also be accepted electronically at the e-mail addresses below or at the camp’s website:

FMI: Micah Wyatt, 307-460-0860,

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

CWC spring class combines cookery & poetry

Course: Dutch Oven Cooking and Cowboy Poetry

Description: This will be a day to remember. The beautiful Sinks Canyon Center will host a day combining cooking and historical and cowboy poetry. Jack will help you season your own new oven and then prepare a meal to share. While the dinner is cooking and the pot seasoning, Jean Haugan will discuss the writing of poetry. Poetry will be shared throughout the day by any and all who would like to participate. You will take home your own Dutch-oven and a full stomach.

Instructor: Jack Schmidt

Details: Saturday/9:00-5:00; Dates: 4/12; Place: Sinks Canyon Center; Cost: $25 + Dutch Oven & Supplies = $100; SYN 5636 CMSV 0052 LB

Course: Historical and cowboy poetry

Description: If you are unable to participate in the Dutch-oven Cooking Class and have only time enough for the poetry you can choose to do this. Jean will combine history and poetry of the west for students. This will prove to be a great day.

Instructor: Jean Haugan

Details: Saturday/11:00-1:00; Dates: 4/12; Place: Sinks Canyon Center; Cost: $10; SYN 5635 CMSV 0118 LA

FMI: CWC, Lander Center, 307-332-3394

Start with a poem, end with a sculpture

You'll be "Tremorized" Feb. 1

The Tremors will perform in concert on Friday, Feb. 1, 7:30 p.m., at Kelly Walsh High School in Casper.

Here's some background on The Tremors from the ARTCORE web site:

The Tremors, Wyoming's only two-piece trio, always produces a special, out of the ordinary and memorable show for their ARTCORE appearances.Two years ago it was the Guitar Army -- 36 guitarists joined the Tremors on the ARTCORE stage. Prior to that it was the Tremors in a vaudevillian show featuring the Casper College Basketball Team, two comedians and the Troopers Rifle Corps -- all set to original Tremors music.This year will be no exception. The Tremors will feature all their favorite female artists, bringing a sisterly-twisted flare to the Tremors original tunes. Selections from their four CDs will stand out along with their most recent concoctions, vibrations & pulsations. You'll be Tremorized. Don't miss this one!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Art show, sled dog races, at Dubois Winterfest

Dubois Sled Dog/Skijoring Races & Winterfest will be held in Dubois Feb. 1-3. Highlights include the dog sledding for adults and kids, skijoring, the "Gift to the Community" art show and sale at the Headwaters Center, a hootenanny, snow sculpture contest, dog parade, homemade soup cook-off, bread making, and a homemade ice cream contest. For more info call 307-455-2556 or online at:

Apply now for 2008-2009 WAC Artists' Roster

The Wyoming Arts Council invites you to apply for its 2008-2009 Artists' Roster. Applications will be mailed this week to those on our individual artist mailing lists in folk arts, performing arts, visual arts, and literature. You may also access a printable roster application by going to the WAC web site at and clicking on the "Artists Roster" link on the home page.

Application deadline is March 31, 2008.

Here are some FAQs about the roster:

Q; Who may apply?
A; Artists in all artistic disciplines. You must be a current Wyoming resident and 18 years of age or older.

Q: Why do we have a roster?

A: WAC is dedicated to promoting Wyoming artists in all disciplines. The roster serves two purposes: it gives a WAC “stamp of approval” to the roster artist and also serves as a resource to Wyoming communities, organizations and schools seeking quality artists for their local programs. The roster is available on the WAC web page and is distributed in paper format statewide via the summer issue of Wyoming Artscapes newsletter.

Q: How often is a new roster developed?

A: New artists can apply each year, while artists already on the roster may be carried forward to 2011 without reapplying, if they update their information each year and receive good evaluations/reviews from WAC grantees. In 2011, all artists will need to re-apply.

Q: Can artists who are not on the WAC Artist Roster work on Arts Council sponsored projects?

A: Yes, the Arts Across Wyoming grant program requires that organizations use artists from the roster to receive grant funds in this category. Artists who appear on the roster can be used for all other WAC grants. Artists not on the roster can be used for all WAC grants except Arts Across Wyoming.

For questions about, or assistance with the roster application process, contact one of the following staff members:

Grants Mgr./Roster Coordinator: Karen Merklin, 307-777-7743,
Folk and Traditional Arts: Annie Hatch, 307-777-7721,
Literary/Performing/Visual Arts: Mike Shay, 307-777-5234,

Arts Access hits the Superbowl

Amid the wall-to-wall sound during next Sunday's Super Bowl, one commercial from PepsiCo could send some viewers grabbing for their remotes to check whether they'd accidentally hit the mute button. The pre-game advertisement features a joke that originates from the deaf community and will play out on screen over 60 seconds of total silence, a veritable eternity when it comes to the noisiness of Super Bowl ads."It's a popular story and we just turned it into an advertisement," said Clay Broussard, a supply and logistics manager at PepsiCo who proposed the idea for the ad. "This is the PepsiCo flavor of that joke."

The joke goes like this: Two guys are driving to their friend Bob's house to watch the Super Bowl. Once they get to Bob's street, neither knows which house is his. They sit in the car, arguing, until one of them has an idea. He starts laying on the horn, and one by one, the houses light up and dogs start barking. One house stays dark and quiet: It's Bob's.

Deaf people will be falling out of their chairs in disbelief, National Association of the Deaf president Bobbie Beth Scoggins wrote in an e-mail response to questions. Hearing people, Scoggins wrote, will stop what they're doing to see why there are no sounds. She believes it's an historic first for an ad featuring American Sign Language to get such prominent play. "I was glad to see this part of deaf culture awareness shared in a most clever way," Scoggins, who is deaf, wrote by e-mail as she was traveling. Broussard, who plays Bob in the commercial, has worked for PepsiCo in Dallas for 27 years. He got involved in the deaf community through a church he and his wife attended, where the services were conducted entirely in sign language. Broussard is not deaf. The two actors who play Bob's friends - Brian Dowling and Darren Therriault- are also PepsiCo employees, and are deaf. Dowling works for Frito-Lay in Arizona, and Therriault works for PepsiCo in Chicago. Broussard worked on the ad concept on his own time. He said, "This was all extra credit." It was 18 months before he showed it to senior managers, who decided they wanted it for the Super Bowl.

Watch the ad at

Sinclair's "Taste of Wyoming" due out in March

Truck-stop cuisine it ain’t. Worland’s Pamela Sinclair has written a book, “A Taste of Wyoming: Favorite Recipes from the Cowboy State,” described on as “a divine blend of Wyoming's rich culinary heritage and contemporary cuisine.”

You have to leave the interstate to find the food so lovingly described by Pamela in her book. Photographs are by Paulette Philpot, winner of a national award from the Professional Photographers of Canada. An extra bonus: the foreword is by one of the state’s foremost fiction writers, Alyson Hagy of Laramie.

Pamela has a master’s of arts degree in communications, and she is an adjunct faculty member at Northwest College. Her hobbies include cooking, gardening, hiking, and reading. She resides in Worland with her husband and four dogs.

Here’s more about the book from

This exquisite cookbook features sophisticated interpretations of Western dishes from Wyoming's finest restaurants, lodges, and bed-and-breakfasts as well as classic Cowboy State favorites. Belly up to the table for mouthwatering Western cuisine: Blue Ribbon Caramel Cinnamon Rolls, Pine Nut Crusted Goat Cheese, Warm Green Bean Salad, New West Clam Chowder, Lamb Ossobucco, Brandied Apricot Stuffed Pork Loin with Port Wine Glaze, Pan-Fried Rocky Mountain Trout with Hazelnut Butter, Sour Cream Cherry Pie, and Wild Huckleberry Muffins with Orange Glace. Complementing the delectable recipes and gorgeous photographs are excerpts from the works of Wyoming writers and delightful historical images. Author Pamela Sinclair as struck a culinary cord with Wyomingites, according to author Alyson Hagy, who writes in the foreword, "Sinclair has discovered a knotty little Western secret. She has toured our kitchens and our stubborn gardens and our memories. She has listened to the way our stomachs growl before we head off on a brisk hike or after we’ve spent a twilight hour shoveling snow. She knows our hearts are half-hitched to our dinner plates."

Farcountry Press plans a March release of “A Taste of Wyoming.” Find out more at

MFAers in Casper read to enthusiastic crowds

The readings began at noon in the Vista Lounge in the Student Center at Casper College. Thanks to Dylan Llewlyan for providing us with sub sandwiches and refreshments and for setting up all the details of these readings. Josh Olenslager (who has been published a handful of times), read his wonderfully image-rich poetry. Jason Burge read his fiction story about the "he" giving his daughter a bow and arrow set and the consequences of that action--a humorous and dramatic work. George Vlastos, who is a teacher at Star Lane Academy in Casper, read his narrative poetry. I fell somewhere in between those, reading poetry and some short non-fiction pieces.

At 1:30, we went to Star Lane and read to 16-18 year old youths. They were attentive and very polite. They laughed at the the chapter Jason read there, about finding the foundling on "his" doorstep. Josh read more of his terrific poetry, George read some very interesting prose poetry about sampling the olive bar and one titled "Wet Dreams." The kids laughed at Jason's story, and at George's. They were very receptive to us.

At 7:00 that night, we read at Metro Coffee Shop, surrounded by Tom Loepp's art work that was on display. Tom is a local artist there, and while we were at the college, sketched each one of us at the podium as we read. He asked us to sign his sketch book for him, too. He does portraiture and very realistic scenes. Beautiful stuff! The crowd was relaxed and so were the readers by this time. Josh was almost on the verge of slamming, and Jason's chapter, about taking the foundling to the welfare office to get him some proper care was hilarious. George read more of his insightful prose poetry, the subject of which is often about his two young sons, Greece, and his trip to the Parthenon. I read more poetry, and a short story about trying to get rid of the autumn leaves in my parent's yard after my father's death.

New Alta Branch Library gets go-ahead

Readers in Alta received some good news last week (from a press release):

On Jan. 22, Teton County Commissioners' voted to purchase land in Alta to relocate the Alta Branch Library. The County will purchase a 1.5 acre parcel from St. Francis of the Tetons Episcopal Church. The parcel is situated at the northern boundary of the church's land.

"We are thrilled with the County Commissioners' decision to secure an ideal location for the Alta Branch," said Deb Adams, Teton County Library director. "The site is at the heart of the Alta community, adjacent to the school and church."

Now that the land purchase has been approved, the next step for the library will be to work with the County Commissioners to determine funding for the building, parking and grounds. A future workshop will be scheduled with the commissioners to discuss cost estimates and begin the county building approval process. In the initial workshop, library leaders will present a recommendation for a 2,000-square-foot building, including 1,500 square feet to accommodate library services and a 500-square-foot area for community meeting space.

The Alta Branch Library is housed in a classroom in the Alta Elementary School through a cooperative agreement with the Teton County School District.

Find out more about the Alta Branch Library at its website at

Friday, January 25, 2008

Yazzolino & Thomasma at Teton Co. Library

On Friday, Feb. 8, 7-8 p.m., local teacher-musicians Terry Yazzolino and Dan Thomasma explore history through music at the Teton County Public Library in Jackson. They will play songs from their new CD and perform historical re-enactments to celebrate Black History Month. For families with school-age children and up. Snacks provided. Cost: Free. Location: Ordway Auditorium. Contact: Youth Services, 733-2164 ext. 103.

"Power of Place" lectures in Carbon County

The lecture series, "The Power of Place: Legacies of Carbon County," continues through March at the Carbon County Higher Education Center, 705 Rodeo St., Rawlins. The lectures are being recorded and archived at CCHEC and the Carbon County Museum. Soon they will be available as podcasts on the CCHEC website. Time for all lectures is 7-8:30 p.m.

Some of the upcoming topics include:
The Vibrant Political History of Carbon County, Bill Vasey (2/5/08)
The Rich Heritage of the Little Snake River Valley, Linda Fleming (2/12/08)
Where History is Made, Nancy Anderson and Marv Cronberg (2/19/08)
Strong Women of Carbon County, Margaret Brown (3/4/08)
The Legacy of Native Americans in Carbon County, Merle Haas and Alonso Moss (3/18/08)
Final presentation: "The History of Carbon County: A Celebration," by local historians (3/28 and 3/29).

FMI: 307-328-9274

JCAHC to award college scholarship

The Johnson County Arts and Humanities Council will award a $1,000 scholarship to a graduating senior in Buffalo or Kaycee high schools who intends to pursue studies in the arts and humanities after graduation. The scholarship will be awarded on the basis of merit and demonstrated ability for that person to succeed in his/her chosen field. Application deadline is March 1.

For more information, contact Vicki Chenette at Meadowlark School, 307-684-9518 or

Bluegrass band kicks off climate change event

From a UW press release:

The bluegrass band "Head for the Hills" will perform Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 8 p.m. in the Wyoming Union Skylight lounge. The performance will kick off the University of Wyoming's climate change symposium scheduled Thursday, Jan. 31, in the Wyoming Union.

The band plays a mixture of homegrown compositions, traditional harmonies and has an "innovative approach to improvisation that reflects the band's experiences living the mountain life." Hailing from Fort Collins, Colo., the members use their influence from nature and life experiences to create their unique sound.

The band has played with legendary mandolin player David Grisman, members of the Yonder Mountain String Band, and Benny Galloway and the Wayword Songs.

Preceding the concert is a 6 p.m. "Webinar" (rhymes with "seminar") that will show students how to make a difference in the fight against global warming.

The event is sponsored by ASUW's Student Activities Council and is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.

FMI: Mike Lange at (307) 766-6340.

Call for entries: Riverton Art Show & Sale

Entry forms are now available for the Riverton National Art Show and Sale June 6-15 at Central Wyoming College in Riverton. It's sponsored by the Riverton Artists Guild.

Completed application forms and fees ($10 per entry) are due by May 15. Shipped works are due on May 31. Hand-delivered works may be brought through 3 p.m. on June 5 to the Robert A. Peck Gallery at CWC. Judging takes place on June 6; the exhibit opens June 7.

Applications are available by writing to the Riverton National Art Show and Sale, Riverton Artists Guild, PO Box 6117, Riverton, WY 82501-6117.

Montana clay artists invade Wyoming

"Red Lodge Clay Center Comes to Northwest" features the work of Montana clay artists through Feb. 8 at the Northwest College Gallery in the Cabre Building in Powell.

Artists in the exhibit are David Hiltner, Dawn Holder, Frank Saliani, Stephanie Lanter, and Tara Wilon.

Gallery hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Friday; also open 7-9 p.m. on Thursdays.


The invitations are in the mail!

This past week, the Wyoming Arts Council mailed thousands of invitations for its 26th annual Governor's Arts Awards gala Feb. 22 at the Taco John's Events Center in Cheyenne. Thanks to our excellent corps of WAC volunteers for stuffing, stamping, and labeling the multitude of envelopes.

If we miss you, let us know and we'll send one out. You can also go to the WAC web site and get the details at

This year's Governor's Arts Awards honorees are:
  • Neil Hansen, associate professor of music, Northwest College, Powell
  • Lander Community Concerts Association, Lander
  • Michael McClure, photographer, Lander
  • Tucker Smith, wildlife artist, Pinedale

Tickets are $50 apiece. The Hitching Post Inn adjacent to the events center is offering rooms for the occasion at $70 per night.

FMI: 307-777-7742

Thursday, January 24, 2008

MFAers in Casper tomorrow

In the effort to promote the MFA creative writing program at UW, a group of University of Wyoming MFA creative writing students, including Jason Burge, Josh Olenslager, and yours truly, Linda Coatney, will be reading in Casper on Friday, January 25 beginning at noon on the Casper College campus in the Vista Lounge in the student center building. A reading will take place at one of the high schools (sorry, I don't know which one yet) at 1:30, and then at 7:00 p.m. at Metro Coffee Shop.

Music students featured at UW convocation

University of Wyoming music students will be featured at the second Chair's Honor Convocation Thursday, Jan. 31, recognizing their outstanding performances last fall. The performances will be at 1:10 p.m. in the Fine Arts Center concert hall.

Students representing various performance areas will be recognized by Dr. David Brinkman, chair of the Department of Music.

Vocal arts performances will be Meghan Dawson (Lander), James Christopher McCann (Rawlins), and Amber Nordvik (Cheyenne). Harrison Welshimer (Gillette) on woodwinds and Antonion Camacho (Mexico City, Mexico) on strings also will be featured.

For more information, call the music department at (307) 766-5242 or visit


The University of Wyoming Art Museum will open a number of new exhibitions during a free public reception Friday, Feb. 1, from 6-8 p.m.

The 33rd Annual Juried University of Wyoming Student Exhibition will be featured during the reception with an award ceremony to announce cash and purchase awards. The ceremony begins at 6:30 p.m. The juror for the exhibition is Linny Frickman, director of the Hatton Gallery at Colorado State University, Fort Collins. The award-winning students will present an informal gallery walk on Monday, Feb. 25 at 5 p.m. The program is free and open to the public.

Other spring exhibitions include:

Recently Acquired: New Art in the Collection, featuring new acquisitions by artists Kaarina Kaikkonen, Richard Misrach, Martin Stupich, Joan Myers, Jody Forster, Neelon Crawford, Stuart Klipper, and Debbie Fleming Caffery. Seven works gifted from the JP Morgan Chase through the Business Committee for the Arts, Inc. – Association of College and University Museums and Galleries will also be on view.

UW Art Department Faculty Exhibition presents recent artwork by new and adjunct faculty. Participating artists are Department Head Ricki Klages (painting), Ashley Hope Carlisle (sculpture), Mark Ritchie (printmaking), Leah Hardy (metals), Doug Russell (drawing), Shelby Shadwell (drawing), Diane Baumbauch (mixed media), Jenny Venn (graphic design), Margaret K. Haydon (ceramics), and David Jones (sculpture).

Hell on Wheels: Union Pacific Railroad Towns in Wyoming is presented by the American Heritage Center. It examines the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad across southern Wyoming during the late 1860s. The exhibit includes photographs and excerpts from letters and diaries found from the Center’s collection.

All exhibitions close March 1, 2008 in order to prepare for renovations in the Centennial Complex. The Art Museum Store and the museum’s education programs will continue without interruption.
Bringing the world of art to Wyoming, the Art Museum is located in the Centennial Complex at 22nd & Willett Drive in Laramie. The Museum and Museum Store are open Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with extended hours until 9 p.m. on Mondays, Feb. through April. Admission is free.
From the UW Art Department Faculty Exhibition
(Top: Ricki Klages -- Panzano in Chianti: Papaveri 2006, oil on panel, 20 x 20 inches;
Bottom: Doug Russell--Another Nature #4 2007, Prismacolor pencil, 30 x 22 inches)

Writing contest: one week and counting

The postmark deadline for the Wyoming Writers 2008 Writing Contest is one week from today -- January 31. Here are some details:

Entry Fee: Prose: $10 per entry for members of Wyoming Writers, Inc.; $15 per entry for non-members. Poetry: $5.00 per entry for members of Wyoming Writers, Inc. and $10.00 per entry for non-members. All surcharges for non-members may be applied to membership. See our website for membership information or e-mail the Contest Chair at the below address to receive an application for membership form. No limit on the number of entries allowed. Include one check for the total amount. No entry fees will be refunded unless a category has nine or fewer entries. Those manuscripts will not be judged and entrants’ fees and manuscripts will be returned.

Eligibility: The contest is open to all Wyoming residents and non-residents. All works must be original and in English. An Affidavit of Authorship (attached) must accompany each entry. Previously published material or work accepted or under consideration for publication elsewhere, or entered in another contest simultaneously is NOT eligible. Work that has previously placed or received honorable mention in a Wyoming Writers, Inc. contest is NOT eligible. Work may be submitted to other contests or for publication after the contest deadline.

Length: Not more than 3,500 words per prose entry; not more than 40 lines per poem.


·Adult Fiction
·Adult Non-fiction
·Fiction for Children
·Free Verse
·Traditional Poetry

Prizes: Cash prizes of $50, $30 and $20 will be awarded in each judged category.

Critique: Entrants may request a critique for a $10 fee. Include critique fees with entry fees.

Get more info at the WW web site at

It's a great day for poetry

From Ted Kooser, Poet Laureate 2004-2006

I've written about the pleasures of poetry that offers us vivid scenes but which lets us draw our own conclusions about the implications of what we're being shown. The poet can steer us a little by the selection of details, but a lot of the effect of the poem is in what is not said, in what we deduce. Lee McCarthy is a California poet, and here is something seen from across the street, something quite ordinary yet packed with life.

Santa Paula

There's a woman kissing a cowboy
across the street. His eight-year-old son
watches from the bus stop bench.
She's really planting one on him,
his Stetson in danger.
It must have been some weekend.
Seeing no room in that embrace for himself,
the boy measures his future, legs
straight out in front of him.
Both hands hold onto a suitcase handle,
thin arms ready to prove themselves.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

New season begins for "Jentel Presents"

News from the Jentel Foundation in Banner:

After being closed for our annual cleaning and maintenance break, Jentel is pleased to start the New Year off with a diverse and exciting group of talented artists and writers for "Jentel Presents."

This month’s residents from the Jentel Artist Residency Program in Banner will be featured in an event open to the public at Davis Gallery in Sheridan on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 5:30-7 p.m. "Jentel Presents" is a community outreach program that features slide presentations and readings by the visual artists and writers at the residency.

Presenters include:
  • Thomas Doran, Chester, Va. A printmaker, Thomas makes mysterious prints of unusual delicacy
  • Laura Guese, Englewood, Colo. A painter working in gouache and oil bar, Laura utilizes the massive, powerful Western sky in her work
  • Dottie Horn, Cary, N.C.; a creative non-fiction writer who has written about numerous topics related to health and biomedical research
  • David Linneweh, Sharewood, Ill. David's an oil painter who finds that his childhood shaped much of his interest in his surroundings and landscape
  • Julie D. Strasheim, Centennial, Colo. a painter who has immersed herself in the history of art by living in Europe
  • Cheryl Zeeb, Denver, Colo., a writer, humorist and performer has many aliases that pique the interest of her audiences.

For anyone looking for a stimulating evening, come join the crowd at Davis Gallery, 32 North Main St, Sheridan. There is no admission charge for "Jentel Presents" and refreshments are available.

The Jentel Foundation offers dedicated individuals a supportive environment in which to further their creative development. While at Jentel, visual artists and writers have the opportunity to experience unfettered time to allow for thoughtful reflection and meditation on the creative process in a setting that preserves the agricultural and historical integrity of the land.

The Jentel Artist Residency Program accepts applications twice a year from visual artists in all media and writers in all genres for a one-month residency. A residency includes a comfortable accommodation, common living, dining and recreation areas, a private workspace and a stipend to help defray expenses during the program.

Call for entries: Wyo. Short Film Contest

The Wyoming Film Office announces its first-ever Wyoming Short Film Contest.

The premise is simple: make a short film that takes place in Wyoming, features Wyoming, or presents Wyoming as a major character in the story line, and you’ve got a shot at winning the $25,000 grand prize (applied to the production budget of your next made-in-Wyoming film), along with an exclusive premiere at the 2008 Jackson Hole Film Festival.

All submissions are due on or before May 9, 2008. Winners will be announced and contacted on or about May 23. Judge's decisions are final. There is no entry fee.

For more information, or to submit a short film, visit

Reserve tix now for Governor's Arts Awards

The Taco John's Events Center in Cheyenne is the site for the 26th annual Governor's Arts Awards gala on Friday, Feb. 22. Social hours begins at 6 p.m., with dinner at 7 and the awards ceremony at 8.

This year's honorees are:
Neil Hansen, associate professor of music, Northwest College, Powell
Lander Community Concerts Association, Lander
Michael McClure, photographer, Lander
Tucker Smith, wildlife artist, Pinedale

Tickets are $50 apiece. The Hitching Post Inn adjacent to the events center is offering rooms for the occasion at $70 per night.

For more information, go to the WAC web site at or call 307-777-7742.

PHOTO: This is a sample from this year's Governor's Arts Awards invitation, featuring the photography of honoree Michael McClure.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Jahiel photographs featured at State Museum

A series of black and white silver gelatin photographic prints of working cowboys are featured in the exhibit, "Cowboys on the Range: Photographs by Adam Jahiel," at the Wyoming State Museum from January 22 through March 7.

The public is invited to a talk by Jahiel from 4-5 p.m. on February 21. A reception will follow the talk from 5-7 p.m.

For more than a decade, Jahiel has packed his tent, saddle, stove, lantern and cameras and headed west to his regular circuit of Great Basin ranches.

Once there, he spends several weeks shadowing roundups and photographing. These cowboys don’t carry much and don’t own much, making for a simple existence in the isolated, lonely big-sky of the Great Basin. This area is one of the most inhospitable and sparsely inhabited areas of the United States. The Basin covers most of Nevada, over half of Utah and parts of California, Idaho, Oregon and Wyoming.

Jahiel, a two-time recipient of the Arts Council’s Visual Arts Fellowship Award, has been a resident of Story for more than 15 years. His work has been featured in "Lens Work," "Photo Insider," "Camera Darkroom" and "Southwest Art" magazines.

His photographs have been featured in exhibitions at the Nevada Museum of Art, the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, the Joslyn Art Museum, the Yellowstone Art Museum, the Buffalo Bill Historical Center and the National Museum of Wildlife Art.

The Wyoming State Museum is located in the Barrett Building, 2301 Central Avenue in Cheyenne, and is open 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Saturday.

FMI: 307-777-7022.

News about the WAC visual arts fellowships

Open letter to Wyoming visual artists:

The past two years have brought a lot of changes to the Wyoming Arts Council. We have a new director in Rita Basom, whom you all knew as the manager of our Grants to Organizations program, and two new staffers: Randy Oestman and Ann Larson. I now have a much longer title: Individual Artists Program Specialist/Newsletter Editor. So, I'm now running the fellowship programs for literature, performing arts, and visual arts, as well as the Individual Artist Professional Development grants for those disciplines. By now, I hope you've seen our new print newsletter, Wyoming Artscapes, which is back by popular demand. Assistant Editor Linda Coatney does most of the writing and I do all of the editing. Linda and I also share posting chores for this blog.

All of this brings me to the point of this post. I'm late getting to the visual arts fellowships. I apologize for the tardiness. Some of you have called and asked if we are discontinuing our programs for individual artists. No, we are not. Grants to individuals are as important as grants to arts organizations. So important, in fact, that they are part of the WAC Strategic Plan.

Not to say there won't be changes. There's already been one. In years past, we recruited three jurors to come to Wyoming to screen the fellowship applications, decide on the winners, and then participate in a visual arts roundtable on topics important to the field. This year, for the first time, I'm taking the applications to the jurors. I've asked three fantastic artists in the Denver area to serve on the panel. Thus far, I have a firm commitment from only one. I'm certain that I will have my panel by the end of this week. The application will be ready by Feb. 1. The postmark deadline will probably be April 30. In mid-May, I will pack up the entries and take them to Denver for the judging session. Fellowship recipients should be announced by June 2.

We've used this same process for the past two years for the performing arts fellowships and it's worked well.

Next, we plan to come up with an event similar to the discontinued visual arts roundtable. Any suggestions?

If you're not sure whether your contact info is on our mailing list, e-mail me your name and address by clicking on the e-mail link below (or over on the right sidebar).

Again, sorry for the delay.

"Three Cups of Tea" author in Jackson

From a Teton County Library press release:

For journalist Karin Ronnow, following in the footsteps of humanitarian Greg Mortenson turned out to be exhausting, exhilarating, enlightening and even life-changing.

Ronnow will offer a behind-the-scenes peak at Mortenson's mission to build schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan during a Teton County Library discussion of the bestselling book, "Three Cups of Tea," on Friday, January 25 at 7 p.m. at the library. The book discussion is free and open to the public through the generous support of the Central Asia Institute and Teton County
Library Foundation. Seating in the library's Reading Room is limited to 75 and will be offered first-come, first-serve with no reservations available.

Ronnow traveled from Montana to Pakistan and Afghanistan to document Mortenson's efforts to promote education and literacy -- and possibly even peace -- by building schools, especially for girls, in the Taliban's backyard. Mortenson is the subject of "Three Cups of Tea," a New York Times bestseller written by Mortenson and David Oliver Relin. The book recounts Mortenson's unlikely endeavor to promote education and peace in the Middle East.

The library book discussion is a prelude to Mortenson's own presentation Monday, Jan. 28 at 7 p.m. in the Grand Room at Snow King Resort. The Jackson Hole Center for Global Affairs is bringing Mortenson to Jackson with the support of InterConnections 21, Teton County Library and Valley Bookstore. Free tickets for the Jan. 28 presentation are currently sold out.

In July of 2007, Ronnow and photographer Deirdre Eitel joined Mortenson to document the progress of his grassroots nonprofit Central Asia Institute for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Mortenson's hometown newspaper. The Chronicle published an in-depth series of articles, "Journey of Hope," by Ronnow, the newspaper's assistant managing editor, and Eitel, chief
photographer. The stories proved so popular, the newspaper compiled the articles into a report, which will be available for free at the talk.

Mortenson's school-building mission began after he drifted into an impoverished Pakistan village in the Karakoram mountains in 1993 after his failed attempt to climb K2. He wanted to thank the villagers for their hospitality and experienced a "eureka moment" when he saw 84 children
sitting in the dirt writing with sticks in the sand. So far, his institute has built more than 60 schools.

Contact the library's Adult Program Coordinator at 733-2164 ext. 135. To discover more about the Central Asia Institute, go to or

Artists in Greybull "Sitting Pretty"

Greybull will have another artistic fundraiser to look forward to this year as Pronghorn Press, a local publishing company, organizes a painted chair project to benefit the Greybull Chamber of Commerce.

“I have a relatively low profile as a Greybull business,” says publisher Annette Chaudet, “and I’d like to do something to benefit Greybull and our Chamber which will, in turn, benefit the whole town.”

Chaudet participated in the last chair project herself and has been included in a number of fiberglass animal projects around the region including “Horse of Course” and “Big Horn Magic” in Billings, “Where the Buffalo Roam” in Casper and two of Rawlins’s “Pronghorn Pride” projects in Rawlins. She has also designed a project called “Art of the Books” as a fundraiser for libraries and arts groups all over the country and has written a book on how to put the projects together.

“The chairs seemed to resonate here and this year ‘Sitting Pretty’ will include anything which is intended for sitting which could be chairs, benches, or stools but could also include cushions or even something like a rocking horse. It will be fun to see where the artists’ imaginations take them,” says Chaudet.

Chaudet is asking for “suitable seat” donations. They should be sturdy, not upholstered (though a covered seat on a chair is acceptable) and probably not metal though there are a few styles of older metal chairs that were made to resemble wooden ones that will work. “We need things that have a paintable surface for our artists to work on. Many artists may supply their own seats but we want to have something to offer those who don’t.”

For artists wishing to participate, you can pick up an entry form at the Chamber of Commerce, or call and one will be sent to you. “We need to know how many people want to participate so that we will have display space.” The deadline for entry reservations is March 1. Finished pieces will be delivered no later than May 24. Artists and groups from around the region are invited to participate.

Chaudet will also be looking for some community sponsors to contribute to advertising and the planned posters, tee shirts and the project book she intends to produce. “I’ll also be happy to have a few volunteers when it comes time to place the chairs for display and then to help with the auction!”

“Sitting Pretty’s” pieces will be displayed downtown throughout the summer so that visitors and locals can enjoy them and then will be auctioned at a September event.

“This is a great opportunity for community involvement. I would encourage teachers to have their classes work on chairs. Groups, organizations and businesses as well as individual artists can all become a part of the project. How fun it would be if groups like the Red Hats, the Arts Guild, and Headstart created pieces. It will bring the community together and benefit the community through the Chamber. It’s a win-win event.”

For any questions, entry forms or pick up and delivery information for donated seating contact Annette Chaudet at Pronghorn Press 307-765-2979 or at The Chamber will also have information sheets and artist forms.
PHOTO: "Aspen 5" by Annette Chaudet is an example of what "Sitting Pretty" is all about.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Wyoming author Barbara Graham's upcoming book events

Meeteetse Library, Saturday January 19 at 3:00 PM for reading and discussion.

Cody Public Library on Tuesday, January 22 at 7:00 PM for reading and discussion about writing mysteries.

Wheatland Mercantile, Wheatland on January 30 signing 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM.

Natrona County Public Library, Casper on January 31 at 7:00 PM for reading and discussion.

Douglas, signing at Whistle-Stop Books on February 1 from 11:00 AM to 1:30 PM.

Casper, February 2 signing at Ralph's Books & Records from 12:00 to 2:00 PM

Gift Me, Martin

Many of you know Montanan Chris Valentine, member of Wyoming Writers and WyoPoets, who sends out the newsletter for WyoPoets and the poems with Ted Kooser's comments. I've known her since way back, during the 2000 and 2001 Casper College Literary Festivals, when I met her in the first poetry workshop we did with Utah poet David Lee. Here is her tribute to Martin Luther King.

Dear Page,
I know you well.
You are white just like me,
And blank like my mind.
I wish I had black paper
To write on, in celebration
Of Martin Luther King.
Maybe I will find some
And write a poem on it.
I think I have a silver pen
Somewhere. Now wouldn’t
That be nice? Silver words
On black paper. A fitting
Tribute for an eloquent orator.
Can he see me from the Eye
Of Heaven, struggling to learn
About black people in this
White world of mine?
I know Martin Luther King
And Langston Hughes
Write poetry in heaven.
Maybe they will send me some
While I sit, pen poised,
Ready for inspiration.
And I will interpret their words
As my own, not knowing
They were gifted to me
By those amazing men.
So here am I, with a blank mind,
And a blank page,
Gift me, Martin.

© Christine Valentine 2007

Call for entries: Chicano/Latino writing

PALABRA, print litmag of Chicano/Latino writing, invites submissions of inventive fiction, poetry, novel excerpts, and short plays that explore new directions in Chicano and Latino literary art. Some pay. Guidelines on web site: Queries at Submit via USPS only to PALABRA, P.O. Box 86146, Los Angeles, CA 90086-0146.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Christy Leskovar on Speaking of Writing

This week on Speaking of Writing, Julianne Couch will play an October, 2006 interview recorded with Christy Leskovar by KGLT radio in Bozeman, Montana, with their permission. Speaking of Writing will not be able to podcast this program on the Speaking of Writing site, but you can visit for access. Speaking of Writing airs each week on KOCA FM, 93.5, Laramie’s community radio station.
Christy was born in Butte, Montana, and grew up in Kennewick, Washington. In 1982 she graduated cum laude from Seattle University with degrees in mechanical engineering and French. She then joined Bechtel in Gaithersburg, Maryland. After stints in Kansas, Barcelona, and San Francisco, she transferred to Las Vegas. During a trip to her hometown of Butte in 1997, she learned the shocking news about her great-grandmother being arrested for murder. She ultimately left her engineering career to devote all her time to finding out what happened and writing a book about it. The research and writing took eight years. The result, One Night in a Bad Inn, was a finalist for the 2007 High Plains Best New Book Award.

“Fire ravages a Montana homestead, a dead body is found in the ruins, tragedy turns to mystery which turns to scandal.” So begins One Night in a Bad Inn, a lively tale of war, murder, and mayhem, courage and fortitude, set during one of the most turbulent eras in American history, and it’s all true.

Through this compelling story, we meet the beautiful Aila, the daughter of Welsh immigrants who lives a Dickensian life, orphanage and all, and grows up to be an impeccable woman of indomitable will, rejecting the debauchery and brutality in which she was raised and overcoming tremendous trials; her father, Arthur, the Welsh stonemason turned homesteader who loses all in a reckless scheme; her mother, Sarah, the bawdy boarding house matron, a debutante of the demimonde, who tries to drive her children into misdeeds and succeeds with Aila’s brothers; her husband, Peter, the handsome Irish miner turned soldier who goes off to fight with the 91st “Wild West” Division on the bloody battlefields of the Western Front in the First World War, he saves a man’s life and returns home a decorated hero.

The people are larger than life, some notorious, some heroic; the events, the times, and the settings are fascinating, much of it taking place in early twentieth century Butte, Montana—a bustling, cosmopolitan, industrial metropolis that could have been plucked from the northeast and dropped in the Rocky Mountains, a delicious melange of eastern sophistication amid a mining camp’s outlandishness. It is indeed a remarkable saga through which the reader learns some intriguing history through the lives of some very intriguing people.

New C.J. Box novel hits NYT charts

C.J. Box’s new novel, "Blue Heaven," has debuted at number 25 on the New York Times’ best-seller list. This is the Cheyenne author’s first published novel that doesn’t feature game warden Joe Pickett. It is, however, set in the Rocky Mountain West, Idaho to be specific.

Here’s a description from C.J.’s web site:

A twelve-year-old girl and her younger brother go on the run in the woods of North Idaho, pursued by four men they have just watched commit murder—four men who know exactly who William and Annie are, and who know exactly where their desperate mother is waiting for news of her children’s fate. Retired cops from Los Angeles, the killers easily persuade the inexperienced sheriff to let them lead the search for the missing children.

William and Annie’s unexpected savior comes in the form of an old-school rancher teetering on the brink of foreclosure. But as one man against four who will stop at nothing to silence their witnesses, Jess Rawlins needs allies, and he knows that one word to the wrong person could seal the fate of the children or their mother. In a town where most of the ranches like his have turned into acres of ranchettes populated by strangers, finding someone to trust won’t be easy.

With true-to-life, unforgettable characters and a ticking clock plot that spans just over 48 hours in real time, C.J. Box has created a thriller that delves into issues close to the heart: the ruthless power of greed over broken ideals, the healing power of community where unlikely heroes find themselves at the crossroads of duty and courage, and the truth about what constitutes a family. In a setting whose awesome beauty is threatened by those who want a piece of it, BLUE HEAVEN delivers twists and turns until its last breathtaking page.

Here’s C.J.’s book tour info for Wyoming:
Cheyenne, Thurs., 1/24, 4 p.m., City News, 1722 Carey Avenue, (307)-638-8671
Fri., 1/25, 5:30 p.m., Chickering Bookstore, 203 South Second St. Contact Lois Chickering, (307) 742-8609 or
Casper, Mon., 1/28, 4 p.m., Ralph’s Books, 215 S. Montana Ave.
Sheridan, Tue., 1/29, 7 p.m., The Book Shop, 117 N. Main St. Contact Pennie Vance, (307) 672-6505 or
Yellowstone National Park, Mon., 9/22, noon. Details TBA.

Cho conducts Utah Symphony in Pinedale

The Pinedale Fine Arts Council presents the Utah Symphony on Friday Feb. 8, 7:30 p.m., at the Pinedale Auditorium. The Pinedale performance will be conducted by David Cho (pictured). The Utah Symphony will also be performing for the Pinedale Elementary and Middle school earlier in the day. Tickets for the Feb. 8 performance go on sale later this month and will be available at the usual outlets.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hear from new author at Cheyenne YMCA

On Thursday, Jan. 17, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Cheyenne Family YMCA, newly published local author Cindy Keen Reynders will be discussing writing and published her book, "The Saucy Lucy Murders." A book signing will follow.

The event is free and open to everyone.

FMI: Chris at the Cheyenne Family YMCA, 307-634-9622, Ext. 16.


Creative Capital, the national organization that supports individual artists, announces the recipients of its 2008 grants. Fifty-two artists representing forty-one projects in film/video and the visual arts received initial awards of $10,000. As the projects develop, the organization offers additional funds; projects may receive as much as $50,000 each through the tenure of the multi-year grant. Creative Capital artists also participate in the organization’s distinctive Artist Services Program valued at $25,000 per artist. This program offers artists skills-building assistance in areas such as fundraising, networking, marketing, and strategic planning with the goal of advancing both their projects and their careers. So far Creative Capital has devoted more than $6 million to the Artists Services Program and has served 349 artists in its nine-year history.

The panelists who chose the twenty-one film/video projects were Andrea Grover (Aurora Picture Show, Houston), Effie Brown (Duly Noted Films, Los Angeles), Sean Elwood (Creative Capital, New York), Vicki Funari (Creative Capital artist, San Francisco), David Kwok (Tribeca Film Festival, New York), Scott Macauley (independent producer and journalist, New York) and Sheryl Mousley (Walker Art Center, Minneapolis). The seven panelists who selected the twenty visual arts projects were Romi Crawford (Studio Museum in Harlem, New York), Valerie Cassell Oliver (Contemporary Arts Museum Houston), Sean Elwood (Creative Capital, New York), Douglas Fogle (Carnegie Art Museum, Pittsburgh), Maria Elena González (Creative Capital artist, Basel and New York), Rita Gonzalez (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) and Abby Messitte (Clementine Gallery, New York).

Selected from among 2,535 applications, the funded projects come from across the country. Creative Capital artists now represent twenty-eight states in total. About the new class of grantees, Creative Capital President Ruby Lerner said, “I am struck by these artists’ depth of engagement in issues critical to citizens of the world today. They fulfill art’s duty to inspire reflection, understanding and thought beyond the limits of the ordinary.”

With these awards, Creative Capital’s roster of artist projects grows to 283. In 2006 the foundation issued grants in emerging fields, innovative literature and the performing arts. Many of those grantees attended Creative Capital’s Artist Retreat in August 2006, the kickoff event of the Artist Services Program. Through the grant program and its Professional Development Program (a series of public workshops for artists held nationwide), Creative Capital has served more than 1,700 artists.

Nine years ago, Creative Capital embarked on a mission to reinvent the existing model of arts philanthropy, to construct a new paradigm, and to fulfill the specific needs of the country's most innovative artists. Today, it is the premier national artist support organization, committed to the principle that time and advisory services are as crucial to artistic success as funding. Over the lives of its funded projects, Creative Capital provides artists with a flexible program of multi-faceted, sequential support and partners with them to determine how those targeted funds and services can best work in concert to progress towards the grantees’ own goals. Since its founding in 1999, the organization has committed more than $12 million in financial support and services to 283 projects representing 349 artists. A complete list of grantees, profiles of funded projects, and up-to-date grant cycle information can be found online at the foundation’s website at

Go to to see the complete list of winners.

Rock’n & Roll’n By The Rails

The Cheyenne Depot Museum is hosting a Rock’n & Roll’n party with a 50’s twist on Saturday, January 26, 2008. Rock’n & Roll’n By the Rails will be held in the lobby of the Cheyenne Depot and will begin at 6:00 pm with cocktails. Dinner will be served at 7:00pm. Tickets are $50 per person. The party will feature soda fountain desserts, DJ music by Sound Connection and a award winning dance exhibition by Linda and Joe Fabian. Attendees are encouraged to wear costumes and clothes from the 50’s, otherwise dress is semi-formal. Reservations are required, with a reservation deadline of Wednesday, January 23rd. Rock’n & Roll’n By the Rails is a fundraiser for the Cheyenne Depot Museum.

Rock’n & Roll’n By the Rails will offer an excellent dinner, outstanding desserts and a chance to relive the 50’s.

For more information on this event, please contact Pam Crochet, Events Coordinator for the Cheyenne Depot Museum, at 307-632-3905. The address of the Cheyenne Depot is 121 West 15th Street, downtown Cheyenne.

Call for Exhibitors

A great exhibition opportunity! If you have any questions, please contact Professor Donahue or Professor Bird at the information listed below. These exhibitions are for the display space in the Fine Arts building at Chadron State College, not for the Mari Sandoz Center. Works in all genre and mediums are encouraged. Please feel free to share this information to those that you think may be interested.

The deadline is Feb. 15, 2008 for the Chadron State College Galaxy Series. Seeking proposals for one-month shows, to run from Aug. 2008 - April 2009. Open to all artists 18+; all media. Size restrictions: Must fit through a standard double door. 20% commission. Artist must supply insurance; security is provided on the premises. Send 6 slides or CD with jpegs or PowerPoint images of work, brief statement expressing the exhibition concept, send a SASE to:

Richard Bird
Chadron State College
1000 Main St.
Chadron, NE 69337


Mary P. Donahue
Associate Professor of Art
Chadron State College
1000 Main St.
Chadron, NE 69337-2690

National Endowment for the Arts Opera Honors

For the first time in 25 years, the National Endowment for the Arts has created the new lifetime achievement award. It will be the nation's highest honor in opera.

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) today did something it hasn't done in more than a quarter century: it announced new awards to honor lifetime achievement and individual excellence, this time in the field of opera. "Opera in the United States is a vibrant, healthy art form and it's only fitting that we give it the added recognition of an honor bestowed by the United States government -- just as we do with jazz and folk and traditional arts. This is a way to honor our great opera artists and their work," said NEA Chairman Dana Gioia.For the full press release, please go to


Exhibition to include new and adjunct faculty

The University of Wyoming Art Museum is pleased to feature the UW Art Department in an exhibition of recent artwork by current faculty. “Art Department studio faculty are nationally and internationally recognized creative artists,” said Ricki Klages, art department head. “The commitment to the creative process is equal to the commitment to excellence in arts education. We are fortunate to have a faculty dedicated to their respective media and working across a broad range of aesthetic and technical approaches to studio practice. There is not a universal departmental approach or style. Instead, faculty express their individual artistic vision with integrity and passion.”

In addition to paintings by Klages, the UW Art Department Faculty Exhibition is comprised of artwork by Ashley Hope Carlisle (sculpture), Mark Ritchie (printmaking), Leah Hardy (metals), Pat Kikut (painting), Doug Russell (drawing), Shelby Shadwell (drawing), Diane Baumbauch (mixed media), Jenny Venn (graphic design), Margaret K. Haydon (ceramics), and David Jones (sculpture).

An opening reception is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 1 from 6-8 p.m. The UW Art Department Faculty Exhibition continues through March 1.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Artists of the Northern Front exhibition

Artists of the Northern Front, a virtual co-op of artists from the northern Front Range of Colorado and Wyoming, will feature work at Sweet Melissa's, 213 S. 1st, Laramie, through Jan. 31.

The show includes these artists: Bruce Allemani, Amy Irish, Beth Buskirk, Jim Jereb, Deborah Kratzer-Reid, Mack Brislawn, Gail Shive, Terry Reid, Raymond Jordan and Barry O'Riley.


Monday, January 14, 2008

Maturis publish their own books

Karla Pomeroy wrote in today's Casper Star-Tribune about Laramie County writing couple Richard and Mary Maturi. As have many writers, they've turned to publishing their own books. You can read the entire story at

Eight years after the initial release of "Will Rogers, Performer," the authors-turned-publishers have re-released the book in paperback.

Laramie County residents Richard J. "Rick" and Mary Buckingham Maturi collaborated on the biography, which McFarland & Co. published with library binding in 1999.

Rick Maturi said the 275-page book sold for $60 and was marketed mostly for libraries. Now, with their own publishing company, 21st Century Publishers, the
Maturis have a new foreword in the book and added more information on Rogers' connection with aviation.

The book, available on-line and at some local bookstores, has an actual release date of April 2008. The paperback book is 304 pages but weighs much lighter than the first-edition library-bound book, Rick Maturi said. It also sells for much less, at $24.95.

2008 Jackson Hole Writers Conference line-up

From a press release:

An international best-selling writer, the fellow who was nearly pecked to death by ducks, and the smartest man Alexandra Fuller ever met are among the guests scheduled to attend the 16th Jackson Hole Writers Conference Jun. 26-29 at the Center for the Arts in Jackson.

Tim Sandlin, co-director of the summertime gathering of writers in search of agents and publishers, recently announced the line-up for this year’s conference. In addition to well-known writers of fiction, nonfiction and poetry, the guest faculty will include editors from major publishing houses, literary agents, successful magazine writers and representatives from the universe of young adult books.

Here’s the complete faculty list:

  • Elizabeth George (pictured above) – The best-selling author of 22 novels, most of them made into BBC Masterpiece Theatre movies, her latest is “What Came Before He Shot Her.”
  • Gail Tsukiyama – The bestselling author of six novels, the latest being “Street of a Thousand Blossoms,” Tsukiyama was the recipient of the Academy of American Poets Award and the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award.
  • Jane Hamilton – Her first novel, “The Book of Ruth,” won the PEN/Ernest Hemingway Foundation Award for best first novel and was a selection of the Oprah Book Club. Her second novel, “A Map of the World,” was an international bestseller. Her latest is “When Madeline Was Young.”
  • Bob Mayer – The speaker, instructor, West Point graduate and former Green Beret has written 35 books – fiction and nonfiction – including many New York Times bestsellers.


  • Michael Perry – The author of “Population 485,” “Truck” and “Big Rigs Elvis and the Grand Dragon Wayne,” Perry also has a CD entitled “Never Stand Behind a Sneezing Cow.”
  • Tim Cahill – The founding editor of Outdoor Magazine and a frequent contributor to National Geographic Adventurer, Cahill is author of 10 books about adventure, travel and nature, including “Pecked to Death by Ducks” and “Road Fever.” He lives in Livingston, Mont.


  • Bryan Christy – The author of “The Lizard King: A True Tale of Reptile Lover” is a former lawyer, a Fulbright Scholar, and a freelance writer for National Geographic and Playboy. In the course of his years of research on reptiles, he has been bitten between the eyes by a blood python, chased by a mother alligator, sprayed by a bird-eating tarantula, and ejaculated on by a Bengal tiger. Alexandra Fuller called him “the smartest man I ever met.”

Young Adult:

  • Melissa Manlove – The young adult editor at Chronicle Books blogs about children’s book at
  • Christian Burch – An artist and real-life “manny” (male nanny), Burch is the author of the popular and funny novel, “The Manny Files.”


  • Christopher Merrill – Author of four collections of poetry, including “Brilliant Water and Watch Fire” – for which he received the Peter I. B. Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets – Merrill also is a translator, editor and director of the international writing program at The University of Iowa.
  • Cecily Parks – Parks’ poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Five Points, The Paris Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Yale Review and elsewhere. In December, she will publish her first book, “Field Folly Snow.”


  • Sam Douglas – An associate editor at Picador, Douglas works mostly on literary fiction, memoir and narrative nonfiction. He also has worked as a newspaper reporter, a freelancer and an MFA student at Columbia.
  • David Cashion – A senior editor at Penguin Books, Cashion has worked in the publishing industry for 15 years, including stints at Hyperion and Dell Books. He graduated from NYU with a degree in film and English literature.


  • Joëlle Delbourgo – The president of Joëlle Delbourgo Associates, based in Montclair, N.J., Delbourgo has been an editor, editor-in-chief and associate publisher at HarperCollins and Random House. Her agency’s clients include Julie Fenster, Geeta Anand, Pamela Duncan, Chris Farrell and Jackson Hole’s own John Byrne Cooke, among many others.

Literary Management, Publishing Consultants:

  • Doug Stewart – Before joining Sterling Lord Literistic in December 2003, Stewart was an agent at Curtis Brown, Ltd. Specializing in literary fiction, narrative nonfiction and young adult fiction, his clients include Carolyn Parkhurst, David Mitchell, Alison McGhee, Jane O’Connor, T Cooper and Lindsay Moran, among others.
  • Katharine Sands – An associate with Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency in New York City, Sands is the editor of “Making the Perfect Pitch: Advice from 35 Top Book Agents” and author of “PitchCraft.”

Local faculty: Karol Griffin, Tina Welling, Broughton Coburn, Amanda Gersh, Lise McClendon, Debbie Atkinson, Christian Burch, Leah Shlachter, Tim Sandlin, Tiffanie DeBartolo, John Byrne Cooke.

Fees: "Early Bird" registration (before May 10) is $360 USD. On May 10, the rate goes up to $390 USD. Your registration fee includes all events at the conference plus three 15-minute individual manuscript critiques with published writers, editors, or agents; a welcome cocktail party; and a barbecue.

If you are a parent, you can register for both yourself and your teen writer for a combined $575 USD.

There are a few scholarships available to qualified candidates. Scholarships are for the conference fee only.

FMI: 307.413.3331;

Soul Street Dance performs in Casper

Soul Street Dance (formerly Fly Dance Company) will perform on Tuesday, Jan. 29, 7:30 p.m. in the John F. Welsh Auditorium at Natrona County High School in Casper.

Here's a description from the ARTCORE web site:

"Soul Street performances consist of high-energy movement that will keep members of any audience at the edge of their seats. Soul Street crosses street dance with classical choreographic principles creating a visual spectacle! The rhythmic sophistication of Debussy, Vivaldi and even B.B. King go toe-to-toe with the physicality and bravado of Soul Street Dance Company's break dance and hip-hop style. These guys are tough with a streetwise, sideways charm; and they know how to move . . . from their knuckles all the way down to their toenails. Soul Street presents a concert that will make you laugh and keep an audience of all ages entertained -- 300,000-plus to date!"

For tickets: 307-265-1564.

Upcoming events at Cheyenne Artists Guild

The Cheyenne Artists Guild conducts programs on the first Monday of the month at 1701 Morrie Ave. in Holliday Park, Cheyenne. Its workshops are free and open to the public.

On Feb. 4, 7 p.m.: Marilyn Miller, the guild’s publicity chairwoman, will conduct a program on cartoon-style caricature drawing.

On March 3, 7 p.m., David Cronk will conduct a presentation on children’s book publishing and illustrating.

Membership in the Cheyenne Artists Guild is open to any artists interested in networking with other artists in and around the Cheyenne area. Annual membership is $35 for an individual and $50 for a family. If you are interested in becoming a member you can call The Cheyenne Artists Guild at (307) 632-2263 and request a membership package OR complete the online form and a Guild representative will contact you.

Help wanted: Lander Art Center E.D.

The Lander Art Center is seeking an executive director.

The LAC, located on Main Street in Lander, is a 2,500 sq. ft. visual arts facility serving Lander and Fremont County.

Qualified candidates will have a degree in the arts or equivalent work experience, must be able to delegate and oversee a wide range of activities, and must have expertise in two of the following with a working knowledge of the others:
• Exhibition Curation
• Art Class and Workshop Coordination
• Budget Management
• Volunteer Management
• Grant Writing
• Newsletter Writing
• Fundraising
• Training
• Managing Senior Citizen Staff
• Community outreach

Position is part-time with flexible hours, salary base is $1,500 per month. Studio space is available at the art center for this position.

Send a letter of interest with resume, writing samples, and a list of 3 references to:
Lenore Poitras, Chair
Lander Art Center Board of Directors
P.O. Box 362
Lander, Wyoming 82520

Contact Lenore Poitras for further information at 307.332.6561, in the evenings.

Position is open until filled.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Casper fiddler listened to teacher's advice

Great article by Hannah Wiest in Sunday’s Casper Star-Tribune about a Casper fiddler who's made good in Nashville.

Justin Williamson is returning to Casper this week as a member of Brad Paisley’s band. Justin grew up in Casper and had the benefits of a great violin teacher in Jim Mothersbaugh. He prepped Justin for his 1996 college audition at Nashville’s Belmont University. Justin practiced the last movement of Mendelssohn's violin concerto, which, Mothersbaugh said, is faster, higher and harder than most classical violin pieces. It enabled Williamson's fingers to fly like a fiddle player's, but showed his grasp of classical technique.

A few years later, when Jim saw Justin playing with Paisley’s band on Jay Leno, he knew that his student has followed his advice:

"I knew what kind of talent he was. I knew how hard he worked. And I knew he'd listened to my advice: Be on time, be prepared, do what people ask, and don't play with a beer in your hand."

Read the entire article at

Brad Paisley and band will be at the Casper Events Center for the "Bonfires and Amplifiers" tour on Thursday, Jan. 17.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Spoken-word artist performs for UW's "Martin Luther King Jr. "Days of Dialogue"

New York City spoken-word artist and author Saul Williams is the keynote speaker for the 2008 Martin Luther King Jr./Days of Dialogue (MLK/DOD) celebration Jan. 21-25, at the University of Wyoming in Laramie.

Williams will perform at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23, in the Wyoming Union Yellowstone Ballroom. He will read his poetry earlier that day from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., also in the Yellowstone Ballroom. Williams is the author of "The Dead Emcee Scrolls: The Lost Teachings of Hip-Hop" and had the lead role in the movie "Slam."

MLK/DOD is UW's annual celebration of the continuing impact of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and ideals. The theme for the seventh annual event, "The Politics of Dialogue," reflects the importance -- and difficulty -- of honest, open communication in a pluralistic society, according to the organizing committee.

The week of special activities renews UW's commitment to make its campus a more welcoming and empowering place for people from different backgrounds, heritages, orientations or abilities, says MLK/DOD committee co-chair Malinda Daniel. Several UW organizations and Laramie businesses sponsor the week's activities.

Most events are free and all are open to the public. Activities during the week are:

Monday, Jan. 21: Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, community service projects, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Laramie; Martin Luther King Jr. March and Dr. Willena Stanford Community Supper, begins at the Albany County Courthouse and ends at the Wyoming Union Yellowstone Ballroom, 4-6:30 p.m. The 2008 Willena Stanford Diversity Award will be presented at the dinner.

Tuesday, Jan. 22: Ellbogen Center for Teaching and Learning book discussion of "Teaching Defiance: Stories and Strategies for Activist Educators, a book written in wartime by Michael Newman", noon-1:30, Coe Library Room 307; performance by Day Acoli, Denver hip-hop poet, 6 p.m., Wyoming Union Yellowstone Ballroom; "One Arab, One Jew, One Stage" comedy show, featuring stand-up comic duo Bob Alper and Azhar Usman, 8 p.m., UW College of Arts and Sciences auditorium.

Wednesday, Jan. 23: "Food of Diversity" smorgasbord, featuring foods from around the world, 4-7 p.m., $10 per person or free to students with UW meal plan, Washakie Dining Center; exhibition of African mud paintings from Kenya and Ghana, reception and gallery viewing with curator Godwill Mock, 5-7 p.m., Wyoming Union Senate Chambers, with the exhibition on display in the ASUW Gallery in the lower level of the Wyoming Union.

Thursday, Jan. 24: Keepers of the Fire Talking Circle, "Going Home Again After College," panel discussion and lunch, including guests Trivia Afraid of Lightning, student from Oglala Lakota College on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, and Patterson Yazzie, communications specialist at American Indian College Fund, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Wyoming Union Senate Chambers; "Don't Let Others Define You," presentation by Trivia Afraid of Lightning, 3-4 p.m., Wyoming Union Yellowstone Ballroom; performance by Boston-based Soulfege, global urban fusion band, 8 p.m., Yellowstone Ballroom.

Friday, Jan. 25: Talk by Guy Padgett, youngest-ever mayor of Casper and first openly gay mayor in Wyoming, 4 p.m. in the Wyoming Union Family Room; Poetry Slam, 9 p.m., Washakie Center King Street Market.

Among other events are a book display at Coe Library, presentations sponsored by the College of Law and the President's Advisory Council on Minorities' and Women's Affairs (PACMWA), and a Martin Luther King Jr. Day Art Show, featuring art by Laramie K-12 students.

For a detailed listing of all events, visit the UW Web site at