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Gualala Arts

Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

Archive of past events: 2004 through 2014

Dolled Up

Opening Reception: Friday, January 7, 2011 at 5:00 p.m.
Exhibit remains through January 30
Gualala Arts Center
Burnett Gallery

Gualala Arts will present an exhibit titled Dolled Up, featuring the works of several artists in different media from the opening Friday, January 7 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. through January 30, 2011.

Dolled Up: Matthew Christopher Dolled Up: Matthew Christopher

While dolls are a large part of childhood, and nearly everyone has memories of their own favorite toys, in the hands of artists, dolls become a conceptual framework for the creation of artworks which explore sociological and psychological phenomena.

In this exhibit artists push the limits of how we understand and think about the doll, using installations, animations, portraits and actual one-of-a-kind handmade dolls. The exhibition will include both sculptural works and wall works.

Artists who use the doll as art form are:

Dolled Up: Eileen McGarvey Matthew Christopher creates poignant, sensitive, and often humorous narratives using stop-motion animation techniques. Barbie is often his lead character actor. Christopher, a native of Chico, California, has a Bachelor of Fine Art from California State University Chico and a Master of Fine Art from Savannah College of Art and Design.

Eileen McGarvey creates inventive and unusual dolls from a variety of mixed media materials including paper, beads, wood, and fabric. McGarvey's dolls subtly comment on a range of sociological concerns. McGarvey, a long time resident of the San Francisco Bay area, recently relocated to Portland, Oregon.

Jane Reichhold has explored the concept of the 'art doll' since her work with ropes in Hamburg in the 1980s. Dolls and doll images keep popping up even in current works as seen in "Saturday Night" in the 2009 "Judged by Your Peers" show, the "It takes a Village" down on the trail path at Gualala Arts Center and the work, "The Mother of Mythos" shown in Heidelberg, Germany the summer of 2000.

Dolled Up: Signe Barrar Shannon Shea creates highly sophisticated stop-motion animations of dolls engaging with humans in stories which explore friendship, fantasy and power relations. Shea then exhibits these films in three-dimensional environments often via video screens embedded in the bodies of dolls she has created. Shea, originally from Oroville, California, currently resides in Portland, Oregon. She has a Bachelor of Fine Art from California State University, Chico.

Nanette Wylde creates portraits - etchings and drawings - which exploit the psychological expressions of antique doll faces to comment on the influences and effects of environment on human psyches. Wylde, a native Californian and long-time resident of Redwood City, has a Bachelor in Behavioral Science from San Jose State University and a Master in Fine Arts from Ohio State University. She is Associate Professor of Art and Art History at California State University, Chico.

Signe Barrar was a long-time resident on the Gualala ridge and worked professionally by sewing for many years as well as being an artist. For this exhibit we will have several of her very original fabric dolls. Signe died in October, 2010, from breast cancer and this exhibit is dedicated to her.

"Dada Dolls" from Elaine Benjamin are figurative assemblages created almost entirely from rescued/recycled parts. Each has a name and a glimpse of history, a story, a bit of this other self revealed. Benjamin works under the imprint of Blue Chair Press in the redwood hamlet of Blue Lake in Humboldt County (California).

Additional artists are being considered.

Gualala Arts 50th anniversary logo

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Join us in celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Gualala Arts, 1961 - 2011

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.