5 picks for January ArtHop: Anne Scheid gets (colorfully) wild at Fig Tree


Wait a moment — this is Anne Scheid’s work?

That’s a reaction you might have walking into “Blue for the Pilgrim,” the newest exhibition of her work.The show opens Thursday, Jan. 3, with an opening at Fig Tree Gallery for ArtHop, the monthly open house of studios and galleries in the downtown and Tower District neighborhoods. (For a list of participating ArtHop venues, click here.)

As fellow artist Marilyn Prescott describes the show: “Joyous, airy, diaphanous, light, open – not descriptors one would normally apply to Anne Scheid’s work. Scheid, the artist who draws. Whose dense, sometimes mysteriously violent, scary images of ruined forests, human limbs and dark charcoal musings have captured audiences for decades.”

What leads the shock list in this new show? Color, for one thing.

“I decided to do some experimenting — break out of some molds, try some new things,” Scheid says. “I started working with watercolor.”


Scheid is known for a dominant palette of black and white, offering a thoughtful repose in a world of blatant colors.

The solo exhibition of works on paper is her first since 2016, when the artist — a retired Fresno City College art professor — was featured in “Body/Land,” a three-part, 25-year retrospective of her work at the Fresno Art Museum, Arte Americas and Fresno City College.

She realizes that some people might be a little disappointed with her shift in artistic temperament but hopes they can appreciate it.

“I think there’s enough continuity to the older work. I still have a strong connection to the natural world — the earth, sky. The human figure is still there … With watercolor, people might call me a painter, but I’m a person who draws. I prefer to think of myself as a person who draws and works with all kinds of media.”

You can watch my interview with Scheid in the January episode of “The Munro Review.” Here’s the clip:

“Blue for the Pilgrim” continues through Feb. 3 at Fig Tree Gallery (644 Van Ness Ave., Fresno).

Other ArtHop picks

1821 Gallery & Studios

Do you reach 8 p.m. on a great ArtHop evening and feel like the party is just getting started — but there’s nowhere for it to continue?

Bruce Kalkowski, owner of 1821 Gallery & Studios (1821 Calaveras St., Fresno), hopes to get a new tradition started with “NotHop,” featuring music and beverages from 8-10 p.m. Thursday’s bash features Anne Whitehurst and Low Noon. Donations accepted.

“I hope it becomes the hip place to pop into after ArtHop,” Kalkowski says.

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The gallery this month features internationally known Carmel artist Keith Lindberg, whose exhibition opens for ArtHop. Here’s a description:

It is hard to classify Lindberg’s style. He has trouble describing it. He came out of art school painting abstract because it was the 1950’s and that’s what was happening, but when he came to Carmel in the 60’s he started painting what appealed to him. It took years to hone his craft, but eventually he developed his own distinct style- -a colorful contemporary combination of abstract and impressionism.

The exhibition continues through Feb. 16.

Spectrum Art Gallery

‘Reflecting Pool’ by Gailan Gray

In “A Suspecting History,” which opens at Spectrum Art Gallery (608 E. Olive Ave., Fresno), Gailan Gray conducts an artistic investigation into where queerness comes from. The artist writes:

Through the agency of a queer perspective I analyzed my grandfather’s art work and his personal objects and began to draw bridges between his work and my own, allowing me to conclude that my grandfather was possibly gay.

Jonathan Rollins’ ‘Kara Electric.’

Also sharing the Spectrum space: Jonathan Rollins’ “My Mind’s Eye,” which “explores the everyday beauty of life in all its forms.”

Both exhibitions continue through Feb. 3. “Friday Photography Live” is 7-8:30 p.m. Jan. 18.

Studio 74

Kirk Cruz uses poster board and color Sharpie pens — but not the black one in the set — to develop the black portions of his work.

His new exhibition at Studio 74 (1274 N. Van Ness Ave., Fresno) is “intriguing, spiritual, and thought provoking,” according to the gallery. The exhibition continues through Jan. 25.

Sorensen Studio

If Anne Scheid gets colorful this month, the opposite is the case at Chris Sorensen Studio (2223 S. Van Ness Ave., Fresno) with the January “Black and White” show. There’s one major rule:

This show is about the use of Black and White, and all varieties of gray. Artwork that incorporates color will not be accepted.

That seems pretty clear, right?

Show curator is Michael Frank.

If you pair together a viewing of this exhibition with Scheid’s new show at Fig Tree, you’ll get the entire color spectrum.


Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

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