WHAT: Turlock Community Art Gallery
WHERE: 132 South Center St. in Turlock. Take Turlock Main Street exit on Highway 99 and head east to Center Street.
MORE INFO: Call 634-8911.
Still looking for that perfect gift for the hard-to-buy-for person on your list? Pencil in a visit to the Turlock Community Art Gallery.
“Art is an expression of love,” said Turlock businessman and former Art Commissioner Rex Klein. “What I like — sunsets, windmills, barns, skies, and Kansas — is in my photographs. There is meaning to them.”
Klein’s own photographs are based on his experience with vast country settings. It is his belief that art portrays something that can pertain to everyone’s needs, wishes and desires.
“We have people who have a specific idea of what they want to hang in their house. They always find something they like. A lot of these items have been bought,” he said.
Two hundred art pieces, ranging from pen and ink portraits, pastel paintings, photography, metal-work, jewelry, and Christmas ornaments, are fashioned by 25 regional artists wishing to inspire the community through their efforts in representing agricultural settings, erotic poses, colorful flower schemes, and rustic appeal.
Klein also believes that because art is just as diverse as the local people who create it, art would make a great gift based on anyone’s unique fashion and point-of-view.
Unlike other art vendors, artists who showcase their work through the Turlock Art Gallery do not have to pay a commission fee. The artist receives full pay for their piece.
Another perk of Christmas shopping at the gallery is that you can contact the artist directly with questions or concerns.
At the Turlock Art Gallery, young and old alike are encouraged to follow their dreams and seek success from their neighbors.
“We have sponsored receptions for children to bring in their art. A local woman, Terry Godinez, teaches the kids art out of her pocket. We try to get her donations. Last year they brought a photograph of all the kids hand signed as a thank you. It was the highlight of the year,” Klein said.
The older generation has also achieved success and self purpose through the program.
“We also have the senior center watercolor and oil teacher over there. We get about 50 to 75 pieces from the Turlock Senior Center. Don Cox was taking lessons out of Samaritan Village. He was afraid to let anyone see his work. He is now doing children’s books that have turned out really well,” Klein said.
Klein is pleased that the center affects the community at large, and allows the artists an opportunity to be seen and gain confidence in their work.
“It means a lot to me to keep it within the community,” he said.
By buying art through the Turlock Community Art Gallery, you are not only purchasing a present, but supporting a vast number of artists that live within your community.
If you would like to visit the Turlock Community Art Gallery, visit 132 South Center St. in Turlock or call 634-8911.
— BROOKE BORBA