Sugatha Roeder brings international flair to Mountain Art Festivals | SummitDaily.com

Sugatha Roeder brings international flair to Mountain Art Festivals

Miles F. Porter IV
Special to the Daily

Sugatha Roeder of Sedona, Arizona, is one of nearly 100 juried artists displaying their works at the first of three Dick and Tina Cunningham's Mountain Art Festivals, the 33rd Annual July Art Festival in Breckenridge at Main Street Station runs Saturday through Monday, July 2-4, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, with free admission.

Roeder describes her jewelry line as "an exclusive collection of jewelry which combines the magic of color, light, fluidity and life."

"In my jewelry pieces, I combine high-quality pearls and genuine gemstones with fine silver, 14k gold and bronze," explains Roeder. "All pieces are hand-fabricated and one-of-a-kind. Textures in my pieces are created with natural plants."

To design and make her unique jewelry artworks, Roeder says, "I collect tiny herbs and leaves, many of them in the mountains around Breckenridge. I love color. Fine pearls and gems allow me to play with that and add life and light to my pieces.

"I wish to convey the joy of creating those little treasures to everyone who wears them."

Roeder, who prefers to be known by just her first name, Sugatha, has an international flair about her — in addition to English, she is fluent in German and French.

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"I did grow up in Germany, had my first jewelry business in Munich when I was 20, got a master's degree in architecture, but found myself back in jewelry over the last 10 years."

In addition to the show this weekend, Roeder will be returning for the end of the July Mountain Art Festivals show and later for the 41st Gathering at the Great Divide over Labor Day Weekend. She'll also be making stops in Jackson Hole, Wyoming; Sedona and Pasadena, California; and Evergreen.

Her website is: inlovewithpearls.com

Festival features painter Brian Keller for the 33rd year

Brian Keller is a mainstay in the summer art festival scene in Breckenridge.

He's back again — for the 33rd year.

''Simply put, I love realistic art," says the Denver painter. "I love seeing and creating illusions. I create realistic paintings because I believe in the power of illusion. Each finished piece of my ultra realistic art is a composite of numerous places and experiences, things I have touched, felt and observed that have affected me and my view of the world in which we live. The principle concept behind my pieces is to invite the viewer in to participate in my vision, and take part in the illusions I create."

In 1991 he began working in egg tempera, which he explains this way:

"Tempera paint is a light, delicate paint that dries almost immediately and does not blend or smear."

The primary goals are to create illusions that capture light and a sense of place which invite the viewer into his paintings, this precise paint is ideally suited to his work.

"The clarity of this paint allows me to capture the fine detail and bright highlights that complete these illusions," he remarked.

Keller received his bachelor's from Ohio's Bowling Green State University in 1971, then earning his master's in 1975.

His early accomplishments were in graphic design and illustrations, but unsatisfied with the constraints of these careers, he left commercial art to dedicate his energies to fine art.

In the mid-'80s, Keller encountered Taos, Santa Fe and the great desert Southwest. The clean, dry air and clear light are major influences on Keller's understanding of light in his works. Today, this is evident as warm colorful glows, reflected light and deep shadows dominate his paintings.

Keller does many of the largest shows in the United States and has been honored with a substantial number of first places and best of shows. He has 14 shows on his calendar this year.

Keller's annual fall workshop is slated for Oct. 22-24, and will be hosted by Michael Unteidt's painting studio at 2200 High St., in Denver.

His website is: btkeller.com

Show attracts whimsical works of Patti and Bob Stern

Artists Patti and Bob Stern have an eye for the whimsical.

The couple will be displaying at the first of three Dick and Tina Cunningham's yearly Mountain Art Festivals, the 33rd Annual July Art Festival in Breckenridge at Main Street Station.

Patti Stern, showing in Breckenridge for the first time, uses vintage farmhouse window frames and Victorian door windows and doors as frameworks, often adding freeze-dried flower arrangements.

Describing the rustic charm of her architectural artifacts-turned-into-art for the wall, the former interior decorator says she "just picked up this antique farmhouse window at a local art show 13 years ago," and the idea sprang forth "to turn it into art to save the old glass from ending up in a landfill."

Husband Bob Stern is the other half of the artistic duo, painting, glazing and hand-rubbing the old wood window frames and doors for authentic weathered looks, resulting in creative, whimsical artworks they call "People Cabinets."

The Sterns are from Moreland Hills, Ohio, near Cleveland, and drive 45,000 miles annually, appearing in shows from Aspen to Key West, Florida, and in Manchester, Vermont, in the Northeast.

With the Sterns' approach to making art by repurposing, recycling and "up-cycling" found items, it seems appropriate to grab some already-printed words in the Chicago Tribune article by staff reporter Mary Daniels, whose story is part of the couple's bio:

"Old Hang-Ups: 'We transform wonderfully old architectural artifacts into truly one-of-a-kind art pieces,' Patti Stern says. 'We take a Victorian door with beveled windows, and we cut the door to three-fourths of its size. We keep the hardware or put on new old hardware.' Then she fills the glass part with her freeze-dried flowers and 'people hang them on the wall as an art piece.'

"A Peripatetic Life: The couple is on the road attending art fairs. 'We also have to travel to find all the components in our work,' says Stern. 'These elements are all circa 1850 to 1910. We find them at architectural antique dealers all over the country.'

"Putting Them in Their Place: Stern takes flowers from all over the world, including Africa, China, Australia, and Italy, lacquers each flower, then staples, glues and wires them into place. 'I build up five layers of flowers and mosses. I work from behind the piece,' she says, never quite knowing how the front will look until it is done. Finally she puts a vinyl mesh over the window to keep things contained. 'You can't enclose them in glass because it would trap the moisture.'

"Making the Room Pop: 'As an interior decorator for 15 years, I always taught my clients that it is not the case goods — the tables, chairs and cabinets — that matter, it is the finishing touches in a space that make your room personal. You want a conversation piece that really makes your room pop.'

"The New Buzz: 'The freeze-dried flower pieces are the mainstay of the business, but the new People Cabinets is the new buzz,' says Stern. Examples 'Rocket Man' and 'Mother Cupboard' can be seen on their website, theperfectview.com."

Following this week's show, Breckenridge will again host the father-daughter Cunningham team's other nationally ranked 15th Annual Breckenridge Main Street Art Festival, July 29-31, and the 41st Annual Gathering at the Great Divide, Sept. 3-5. These events are staged at the Wellington and Sawmill parking lots on North Main Street. Festival times are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, with free admission.

For more information on Mountain Art Festivals visit mountainartfestivals.com or call (970) 547-9326.

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