Indulging a particular fascination, I was delighted to attend Robert Proctor's Chinese calligraphy class or "brush yoga workshop."

We were introduced to a brief history of calligraphy- its description and significance- then attempted to duplicate a half-dozen characters and phrases, with quite varying results. Strong breathing and posture, attention and awareness were emphasized. It was a fascinating afternoon.

Proctor has studied calligraphy and brush painting with Wang Gong-yi and his work has hung in the Shenshen Fine Art Museum in China.

He will repeat this course on Saturday, March 20 at The Art Center in La Grande.

These classes are offered under the aupices of Blue Mountain Community College whose co-ordinator, Rhonda Harguess, was a member of our group. Harguess says, "These kind of classes are so important to our community. BMCC has a 21 year history of serving Wallowa County and I would encourage individuals to contact me at 541-426-4109 to register for classes."

The protean Proctor is giving a printing workshop, demonstrating mono-printing techniques using non-toxic water-based media on this March 6 at 10 a.m. For information: 541-426-4109.

To continue an emphasis on Asian art: Shelley Curtiss has transported three Taoist pieces to Richland, Washington, where she shares a show with painter Sam Collett. These pieces represent many of the readings of the I Ching and "provide a Zen presence." She will also show two wildlife pieces (similar to her iconic "Cougar", lurking with "fearful symmetry" on Main St. in Joseph.) She is also bringing along a four-foot nude woman, a testament to the wondrous versatility of this celebrated artist.

Sam Collett has garnered his own panoply of awards. A "figurative expressionist", Collett brought forty pieces to Richland: figurative and landscape oil paintings and some drawings.

"My work is representational but its purpose is to express," says Collett, who, along with Curtiss is a Wallowa County resource of great worth.

The above mentioned show is at Allied Arts in Richland, Wash., and will be there through March.

Tom Hutchison covers the arts for the Chieftain. Contact him at hutchison

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