When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.”~ Paul Coelho

"Some Mad Hope..."
A young and vital child knows no limit to his own will, and it is the only reality to him. It is not that he wants at the outset to fight other wills, but that they simply do not exist for him. Like the artist, he goes forth to the work of creation, gloriously alone.
Jane Harrison

Jude Harzer Artist/Art Educator

Jude Harzer Artist/Art Educator
My art is a reflection of my effort to recognize and embrace the beauty in the world around me, even when it seems most difficult to find. Contact me at judiharz@aol.com or visit my website at http://www.judeharzerfineart.com

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"Most of us have two lives- the life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands resistance."Steven Pressfield

"The greatest freedoms are freedom from regret, freedom from fear, freedom from anxiety, and freedom from sorrow."
Thich Nhat Hanh

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Recent Works of Jim Inzero and Jude Harzer

exhibit at GALLERY 638
638 Arnold Ave. Mezzanine Level
Pt. Pleasant Beach, NJ
Opening Reception: November 15, 2008
4-8 pm

Regatta Encaustic48 in x 60 in

Jim Inzero
After many layers of wax brushstrokes, I step back and objectively look at the composition from all directions to see what the painting expresses to me. I look to see a physical response in my work, especially a desire to reach out and touch the painting. It is my intention for you to have a sensory and a visual experience with this work.
View Jim Inzero's work at: shoreartist.blogspot.com

Recognizing Possibilities oil on canvas

Jude Harzer
My work is about the preservation of one's "spirit" and dreams. I paint primarily with oils and have recently begun to explore the technique of collage, using an array of patterns and colors, in a quilt like motif, to achieve rich texture and a "loose" visual narrative. My objective is to layer, juxtapose and ‘stitch’ together seemingly unrelated materials and images in an effort to create a single interesting composition. In many ways the process reminds me of one’s life: diverse experiences and meaningful "moments", pieced together to create the distinctive fabric of a person’s existence.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"The Pain Passes, But the Beauty Remains"

During the school year I am very fortunate to have parents and other community members, volunteer in the Art studio to assist with the children. The students benefit greatly from their presence, as it means that they are given added attention. I also enjoy the interaction and appreciate the adult conversation, but most importantly, I value their generosity and time.

So it wasn't unusual when this beautiful, vibrant woman entered my studio to assist with her son Michael's class. I immediately connected with her and admired her poise, enthusiasm and genuine warmth with the children. Amazingly, Pat, who has since become a friend, had just lost her husband Mike, to cancer. Literally, just weeks after his passing, she appeared in my art studio to volunteer. In the midst of a time of great pain and loss, Pat chose to act and "live" on behalf of her son, and in honor of her husband.

Michael is so loved and exceptionally beautiful. He is bright, curious and energetic...all that a 6 year old boy should be.(He is also incredibly knowledgeable about dinosaurs:) Mike is ever present in their hearts and minds. As I came to know Pat and Michael this past year, I could not help but be inspired by their relationship. I witnessed in Pat, great strength and grace. She would probably say that she was simply doing what anyone in her position would do, but I know that she is exceptional.

And so, I asked if I could paint Michael. Eventually, I will create a piece, which in essence, becomes a "memory quilt", celebrating the love of this family.The image here is my first portrait of Michael. Pat commented that the sky to the right, looked like heaven.That was not the intention but the symbolism seems very appropriate.

People enter our lives, unexpectedly, for various reasons... I believe mostly to guide and to teach us but only if we are truly "awake" and listening. Some of those individuals are particularly special and offer "gifts" that influence who we are and inspire us to live more fully. Hold fast to those gifts. Value the love, the pain, the memories. It is a reminder that we are alive!

Thank you Pat and Michael. You are beautiful and have been a gift to me this year.

"The pain passes, but the beauty remains."-Pierre Auguste Renoir

(Although, in all honesty, I believe the pain never fully passes, but perhaps is dulled and transformed into something more constructive. The pain is a result of the intense love and beauty of shared moments. May you always see and remember the beauty. It will sustain your soul.)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Beautiful Minds

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science." -Albert Einstein

At the start of the school year, I attempt to explain to very young learners, why "Art" is of great importance. I ask them "What is Art?" and "Where is Art?" Five year olds are enthusiastic, curious and "magical" human beings. They truly do "see" beauty in the simplest of things and very quickly they are able to conclude that "Art" is everywhere. It is absolutely everywhere!

They always inquire as to how one "gets good at Art?". I respond by telling them that they must use their eyes and their minds. They must practice and make many wonderful mistakes.( I realize no one ever shared that with me until recent years.) But most importantly, I explain to them that "Art" means trying, learning and creating to the best of their ability for the rest of their lives.That is "big stuff" ,one might think ,to share with a Kindergartner but amazingly, they understand, because in essence I am asking them to always be who they are: spirited, interested and "brave" learners, who have little regard for, or comprehension of "limitations."

We know that "Art" is about so much more then creating 2 and 3 dimensional images and objects to display and view. There is an "Art" to all human activity.Athletes, scientists,educators, parents ,all individuals are genuinely "artists" when they wholeheartedly direct their minds and efforts toward mastering the knowledge and skills associated with their endeavors.

An archaic definition of "Art" is "science, learning or scholarship." (not really so archaic).At the beginning of each academic year, I think seriously about how I will share with my students my personal passion for "Art", learning and life.I tell them to "think big" and think for themselves. And so this morning, I read about some "artists" that I greatly admire because they "think big" and persist in unraveling the mysteries of the universe with childlike wonder and energy. These artists are the physicists who after 14 years of labor, "at the CERN laboratory outside Geneva successfully activated the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest, most powerful particle collider ." They are artists in the greatest sense of the word because they continue to learn,explore and imagine!
So to everyone, "Think Big" and use your beautiful minds.

Check out a video and read a wonderful article about the Hadron Collider on the NY Times website.

"In his daring concept of universal evolution as constant motion, as put forth and written into (unwitting) poetry by Einstein, we have then the greatest conceptioning and greatest communication by a human being to other human beings not only in the 20th Century but possibly in any other of the centuries. Therefore I see that Einstein is certainly the great artist of the 20th Century. Einstein becomes the prototype scientist-artist of the not only the 20th Century but of the now looming 21st Century." R. Buckminster Fuller

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Breaking Free

In July of this summer, I was having difficulty concentrating and consequently, producing art. I have learned to work on multiple images as a way of dealing with a "creative block." This is actually a common practice among artists. However, there are times that even a body of unfinished paintings, fails to inspire me to work. At these "moments" of pure frustration, I often feel compelled to create what seem to be "random" images with subject matter that is outside of my traditional oeuvre. I cannot explain for certain the origin of the work but I do know that it is a result of my "breaking free" from some mental barrier. This image is one of three, belonging to a triptych that features crows. I haven't touched them in weeks but was recently reminded of them by something that I read.

Jude, Art and Inspiration