Putting the paintbrush to the easel has long been one of my favorite catharsis. Sometimes words cannot encompass the emotions that refuse to remain inside, so I turn to my guitar or my acrylics for a bit of release. On occasion I enjoy viewing the visual representations of other people's emotions in galleries and other establishments.
So I set out to find just such an oasis in Menlo Park. I was startled to discover very few galleries in Menlo Park. Allied Arts Guild, of course, is the stand out.
That got me to wondering about local government support for the arts here. Where do artists go if they want to start a large project, but can barely afford to purchase the lentil soup in an oddly-shaped can at Trader Joe's?
I turned to menlopark.org to see if I could find anything. Nada lotta. In fact, I learned that the Arts Commission has gone the way of the floppy disk, a forgotten remnant of something that could have been beautiful, but was left behind with the times.
"A majority of the commissioners resigned and their positions were never filled back in '04 or 05," said the woman who answered the phone at the City Clerk's office a few days ago. Evidently, there aren't enough resources or staff to devote official city time to encouraging new talent.
But that's where I come in. I'm going to try and find as many artists as I can in Menlo Park and profile them. I'm calling the new column, The Menlo Park Renaisssance. First up, we've profiled Laura Tuthall, a well-rounded artist who sings, dances ballet, and can jam with the best of them on the guitar.
Next week, we'll profile someone who has been nominated by our readers in Menlo Park. Know someone who has a unique interpretation of life that should be profiled? Email their name and a brief description of why they should be profiled to firstname.lastname@example.org. And don't forget to let us know how we can contact them. They could be the next featured artist on The Menlo Park Renaissance.