What WAS  New 1999 

Page update 07/24/00 

all text and images © 1999,2000  Donald R Ricker all rights reserved

12/27/99 through 1/10/00  Norte Americanos di Firenze Biennale at the Orensanz Foundation exhibition gallery 127 Norfolk Street NYC, NY.  I am participating in this group exhibition with Portrait Battle Study and two drawings, L'Autobus of the Cosmos I & II . Artists from USA, Canada, and Mexico who participated at the Florence extravaganza show new work

12/19/99 Anchorage Daily News Sunday Arts& Entertainment section column ArtBeat made this mention of the Firenze Biennale and my participation today:"Anchorage artist noted in Italy: Portrait Battle by Anchorage artist Donald Ricker received a Fifth Degree Medallion in the second Florence INternational Biennial of Contemporary Art earlier this month. More than 500 artists from 32 nations exhibited. First place went to Giuseppe Rocca of Italy. The jury of six international authorities was looking for unheralded artists. It was the first major award for Rocca, who is considered a treasure in his hometown, a village in Calabria. Jury member Francis Naumann, an expert on Marcel Duchamp and curator of the recen New York DaDa show at the Whitney Museum of American Art, was quoted as saying, 'I don't think there's another world-wide biennial where an unknown and unpromoted painter without a gallery could show and gain instant recognition like this.'"  Thanks Mike Dunham for drawing the connection.

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12/16/99 returned to Anchorage from Florence Italy where I was honored to receive one of several fifth prize Lorenzo il Magnifico medallians awarded to painters. Catch the rest of the winners list with some online contacts for other participants at my FLORENCE page.

12/3/99 12/12/99 exhibition   BIENNALE INTERNAZIONALE DELL'ARTE CONTEMPORARNEA will be held at the Fortezza da Basso in Florence, Italy.  John T. Spike, director of  the Florence Biennale, has invited more than 500 artists from 30 countries tol show together in this cooperative exhibition, with permanent catalogue, of the world's most original paintings, sculptures, and drawings.  Exhibitors by nomination only.  Prizes will be adjudged by the International Jury, whose members Dr Veronika Birke of the Graphische Sammlung Albertina in Vienna and Dr Guy Cogeval, Director of the Musée des Beaux Arts, Montreal.  For more  http://www.artestudio.net or email to:  info@artestudio.net
        I will be participating in this fantastic event. I leave the day after Thanksgiving in the US arriving in Florence December 1st.]

11/20/99    Anchorage Museum of History and Art hosted a lecture by Juror Lawrence Rinder, director of the Institute for Exhibitions at the California College of Arts and Crafts, here in town to select paintings for inclusion in the 27th biennial All Alaska Juried Exhibition. Attended by some 3 dozen people, congratulations to Kay Marshall for $1000 Juror's Choice award for the awesome Rescue Dog, as well as to the other award recipients.  Mr Rinder showed some slides of other shows he had curated. Ascribing beauty to a collection of paint peelings mashed into a shallow box and rhapsodizing about a piece made of paint and dirt stuck on an iron rod, he had me really going for a while.  If I understood director Pat Wolf's sotto voce comment to me afterward, he showed the rare good taste of including my painting Martyr's Dream in the group exhibition January 16- March X, 2000. YAY! First time for me. It is an honor to be included among distinguished company.

11/11/99 theatre/benefit     Mr Whitekeys‘ FLY BY NIGHT CLUB in Anchorage AK presents "FREEZE-UP   FOLLIES" and splits the price of reserved tickets with Alaskan in Florence, the fancy made up name for "I need help!". Have a hilarious evening in a sleazy Spenard Saloon and help send a poor boy half way around the world. Please mention the fund raiser when you call for your reservations. There will be a few of my artists’ reproductions available that evening at silent auction.   3300 Spenard Road, 907-279-SPAM.    This event was a total failure for me; although Keys had a full house, it held none who were there on my behalf.

10/23-24/99   R2001 Lighthomes project show in Japan. October 1999 for two days Place: Keio University Shonan Fujisawa campus. in Kanagawa outside Tokyo. Join 2001 webring and mailing list to get involved. Seiji Ueoka at fig37@cap.bekkoame.ne.jp  

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I  participated with this detail of the drop from Musashi at the Scroll, as well as other details from the same painting.

10/20/99  Bought my ticket to Florence using American Express and Travelocity. Amex has a cool deal for transfering funds across national borders, check it out.  More importantly, Florence, Italy December 1-14 ! Ticket ($1255) ANC MSP PHL CDG FLR  over and back FLR AMS SEA ANC.   Let's see ... I can check out the Walker Center, Rodin in Philly, the Louvre, the Uffizi, the hookers and hash shops, Dale Chiluly and Bill Gates. And of course, Anchorage's top of the world millenium celebration drumming in the new year when I get back! We don't care how they do it where things thaw!

10/15/99  I am proud to anounce EXEGY BOOKSTORE has become a member of the Amazon.com Associates Program: the leading-selling program on the Internet, with more than 350,000 members. Learn more about the narrative basis for my paintings and put more books and videos into your library! Remember, a library is like having a gift store in your own home.

10/8/99  participated in the 1x1x1 group exhibition which marked the opening of the INTERNATIONAL GALLERY OF CONTEMPORARY ART at its new location. I contributed Pre-Flight Inspection (an aluminum maquette on a plywood base) and was pleasantly surprised at the enthusiastic reception it got, including an offer to buy! (One always likes that.)

10/1/99 deadline passed for submission of slides for XXVIII ALL ALASKA JURIED ART EXHIBITION at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art. Juror Lawrence Rinder, Director of California College of Arts & Crafts, is also one of six curators of the Whitney Biennial. So at least he may have heard of me, if my slides made it that far!  Alaska residents only, $15 for up to four entries only, $1000 juror's choice award, $500 category awards, Museum purchase awards. This is a must-enter situation in Alaska, I have been dismissed continually over the years, and to add insult to injury, one must pay an admission fee to see the annointed ones. As Warhol used to note in his journals, ($5). Anchorage Museum of History & Art, 121 West Seventh Avenue #AAJ, Anchorage, AK 99501

09/30/99 deadline passed  RASMUSON FOUNDATION applications from Alaskan 501(c)(3) organizations for capital grants are due.   Alaskan banker Elmer Rasmuson's generosity in 1999 added over $50 million to the corpus of this already flush foundations, which by law must divest a not insignificant percentage of the trust each year. This is a major incentive to become a number. Paraphrasing their application booklet, "supports non-profit organizations to improve quality of life, addressing basic needs including the arts. prefers to assist organizations with specific capital needs & matching project support, funding building materials, equipment, books, arts supplies, musical instruments, and vehicles.Who are the beneficiaries of your organization and of the specific project?"  If I was an arts administrator rather than an artist, I would be drooling heavily now, aren't you? Rasmuson Foundation, PO Box 100600, Anchorage, AK 99510-0600      ITNA except unsuccessfully proselytizing to the Internationsal Gallery of Contemporary Arts board members.

09/26/99    Anchorage Daily News reviewed my show in their Sunday edition, replete with a picture. "Simplified curves, patchy shading, odd proportions and thick contours" is just a sample of reviewer Andy Nau’s pithy descriptions. Check it out here, not at the News site, where they'll try to charge you two dollars.  

09/24/99     ANCHORAGE PRESS  "50 international hot shots have invited Ricker to exhibit at the Florence Biennial. Now all he has to do is pay for it. Tasty morsel tickets"        Anchorage Daily News  "Ricker has been chosen to represent the United States and Alaska. To earn the bucks to make the trip --- transporting art is even more expensive than transporting people --- a dinner/benefit. A five course meal will make up the edible portion of the affair."    Doors will be closed to this private party after 7:00 pm.    ‘D’ Street Café, 427 D Street, Anchorage. 258-0507  

09/23/99    Kris Kline has a worthy site at http://www.galleryNOW.com that is very professional from both the art and net side of life. This is a physical gallery based in Tampa Florida which is expanding on to the web.  Check it out.  Ms Kline wrote " Dear Donald, I just reviewed Party for Rousseau. I feel your work fits into the direction of our YEAR 2000 online exhibition. We would like you to become one of our artists."   Thanks for the kind remarks, Ms K!

09/21/99     Anchorage Museum of History and Art   Solo Exhibition Review Panel did not recommend me for the series this round. In effect, this means no possibility of a solo show at the museum in front of the town's most dedicated and well heeled arts enthusiasts before the year 2003. "Evaluating proposals on artistic excellence and significant body of work, then seeking to present artists from throughout the state who work in a variety of media, the Panel recommended seven artists for over the next two years." These shows last one month each. Why would a period of 24 months have only seven slots for solo exhibits?  Does the Panel really have to decline over 90% of the applicants? The familiar rejection note refrain that "the panelists were impressed overall with the high quality of the submissions" takes on a hollow quality when juxtaposed with the previous percent. Out of curiosity I reviewed the Museum's Organizational Structure page. "The Anchorage Historical and Fine Arts Commission strives to promote the fine arts and to coordinate with other community organizations and individuals to develop the fine arts.  Interest from the Anchorage Museum Foundation endowment fund is used to foster the preparation and mounting of temporary exhibitions." 

  Ever get like this when you receive a 'dear applicant' letter? Incidentally, the museum has offered me NO help so far to represent Anchorage and Alaska at the FIRENZE BIENNALE. In fairness, the 'dear applicant' letter was addressed to me personally.. 

    Congratulations to Garry Kaulitz, print professor at UAA, ; Keren Lowell, sculptor, Fairbanks; Carla Potter, ceramist, Ketchikan; Susan Schapira, fiber artist, Anchorage; Jane Terzis, painter, Juneau; Deborah Tharp, photographer, Anchorage; David Woodie, painter, Juneau. None have any web presence that I am aware of, sorry.  Ladies take note of the ratio: 5 women and two men.

09/18/99    WEIRD ALASKA local cable access show by Cliff & Cara Livingston-Thrasher features my droning tones Saturday night at 10:30pm during the month of September on local cable access channel 44. They say your voice sounds funny when you first hear it on tape. They didn't say my nose would look so pointy. Check it out on the 25th if you're in Anchorage.

09/16/99    ANCHORAGE PRESS  listed my "nifty figurative paintings" in their 2K ARTS issue. Thanks! Other clip quotes from editor Robert Meyerowitz: "These are not the arts’ salad days, not in Anchorage not in the states not in the second half of this century. Artists have always been the world’s shadow government, speaking truth to overweening power. Arts are an innocent bystander caught in a drive-by hail of dollars ... still a handful soldier on. They make paintings that are exhibited in cafés. Without quite intending to, they challenge the hegemony of big-box, megaplex, tourist dollars, making art because it satisfies."

One more, from Susy Buchanan (bless her) "As you admire talents in galleries and coffee shops, keep in mind that the best way to encourage an artist is by purchasing their work.  This year when you visit the shows, try bringing along your checkbook."

09/15/99    Sheila Balestreri of local Channel 2 news declined to feature my exhibit on her 'Two on the Aisle' show because of the nudity. She said I'd understand that it was a sticky situation, hers was a 'family' show..  Gosh!   I hope she didn't get anything sticky on her from my paintings! She did offer to include my info on a list of events that follows her show, thanks Ms B!


09/06/99    It is an honor to be welcomed into the group of artists associated with Manfred Mueller's ART BEYOND BORDERS.   Every artist of the group seeks to organize a group exhibition for all members in his home country. "Would be an interesting show for people from Anchorage to see works from artists of your area together with works from all parts of the world." --- Manfred Mueller   The next international show is October 5th in Austria, and for the new century shows are planned in Austria, China, Toronto, New York, Italy, and (you betcha!) Anchorage.

09/05/99    ANCHORAGE DAILY NEWS included a detail from Portrait Battle in their annual Arts Supplement, along with an article entitled Alaska Art Web Sites, which credited me with supplying some of the sites. Unfortunately, they put a grammatical period at the end of every URL.   oops. Loved the reference to ‘samples of his own increasingly acclaimed work’.

09/03/99    ‘D’ Street Café proprietor Nuré Missalati hosted an opening reception for my solo exhibition of five paintings at 427 D Street, Anchorage  AK for the month of September 1999.   Crystal Hutchens entertained on guitar, and I had to puncture my head to put my hat back on and tie weights on my shoes to walk to my car.  Thanks to all who attended and said such nice things about my paintings.

09/02/99  ANCHORAGE PRESS devoted one half of a special color two page spread about Anchorage's First Friday gallery tour to an off color reproduction of Party for Rousseau and a delightful article titled RICKER ROCKS by Susan Buchanan. ‘Donald Ricker's velvety history’ was mentioned in the table of contents. ‘No dime-a-dozen watercolor/wildlife/tourism sell-out’, ‘bit deeper than a field of fireweed’, and  ‘You'd be silly not to examine them’ were among my favorite bon mots. ‘Sign painters usually don't get to spend hours delineating the forms of frolicking, naked women with perky tits.’  Now where did that come from?  I'm thinking of a lovely, perky mermaid for a dive shop in Hawaii, a Vegas show-girl for a mens hair salon, hmm. Guess that's about it, after all!

Want more? I got it! Check out WHAT was NEW !.Choose ITNA to view the artists’opportunities on which I Took No Action.

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