- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Mark your calendars.
Saturday, May 8 is the "Bees at The Bee" art show.
The art show, featuring the work of bee artists from throughout much of Northern California, is a benefit for honey bee research at the University of California, Davis. The occasion? The Sacramento Bee's annual Second Saturday event.
"Bees at The Bee" takes place from 3 to 8 p.m. in newspaper's courtyard at 2100 Q St. Admission is free, as is parking in The Bee's Q lot.
Some 60 talented artists from a 12-county area submitted work that includes acrylic paintings, watercolors, pen and ink drawings, metal and paper sculptures, photographs, fused glass plates, pendants, a fleece blanket, a neckpiece, crocheted multimedia, collages, monoprint-woodcut, individually painted CDS, and a scrimshaw engraving on a mammoth ivory.
A portion of the art sales will go directly to honey bee research at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility at UC Davis.
“I’m really blown away by the level of quality, the ingenuity, and the variety of content we’re seeing for this show,” said Sacramento artist Laurelin Gilmore, who is coordinating the show. “It’s a relatively narrow theme, but concern for the plight of the honey bees is filtered through each artist in a different way, and the results run the gamut from funny to beautiful to profound. Every time I see a new piece for this show, I am re-energized!”
"Bees at The Bee" will feature a festival-type atmosphere with live music, refreshments and lots of fun things to do, see and sample. For example, visitors can see a bee observation hive and single out the queen bee, workers and drones. They can sample a honey product--the Honey Lovers line of Gimbal's Fine Candies, based in San Francisco. The company is donating five percent of the proceeds from the sale of Honey Lovers (fruit chews made with natural honey) for UC Davis bee research.
One of the artists displaying her work is Marilyn Judson of Davis. She's passionate about calligraphy and paper sculpture.
“I have always loved letters and studied calligraphy in London and taught calligraphy in the local school district and the Davis Art Center,” Judson said.
“Paper sculpture is something I have always want to do and I really have enjoyed the possibilities that it produces,” she said. “Manipulating the paper into a three-dimensional piece can be challenging.”
Her paper sculptures, she acknowledges, include "lots of insects and flowers." Her husband, Charles, is an emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis.
Her paper sculptures of moth brains, moth antennae and bacteria are as stunning as they are intricate.
For the art show, Judson submitted two pieces: a framed paper sculpture titled "Queen Bee" and a framed caligraphy and watercolor featuring a quote from the book, “Archy and Mehitable” by Don Marquis.
Marquis (1878-1937), an American humorist and longtime columnist for The New York Sun, claimed that a cockroach named Archy jumped on his typewriter at night and wrote bits of wit and wisdom.
Archy couldn't punch two keys at the same time so his work contained no punctuation or capitalization. In fact, he wrote his name as "archy."
The "night-writing" cockroach wrote this:
as a representative
of the insect world
i have often wondered
on what man bases his claims
everything he knows he has had
to learn whereas we insects are born
knowing everything we need to know
To really appreciate those words, you just have to see Marilyn Judson's amazing calligraphy, illustrated with colorful insects.
One of them is, yes, a honey bee.