This season, isn’t it right to consider wildlife with even more intent? What would holidays be in Jackson Hole, without the opportunity to look out your window and see a cow moose and her twins grazing in your yard–or to look up and see Trumpeter swans against a crystal blue sky, glittering like giant snowflakes? Or witness an otter’s playful creekside antics? Having a daily meeting with the Big Horn Gang out on the Elk Refuge?
Simply finding an animal’s tracks is holy.
One of my favorite non-profits, the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance, never lets us forget these powerful lessons. This season we must be especially open to receive them.
A thoughtful, artful way to celebrate the wonders of nature is to drop by the Alliance’s monthly “Info Lunch,” 12-1:00 pm on Wednesday, December 15, for “Birds of Sage and Scree,” a talk by Jackson’s beloved birder Bert Raynes and noted landscape and wildlife painter Greg McHuron. A lovely and affordable book, a true labor of love, the book “Birds of Sage and Scree” is a collection of reproduced paintings of regional birds by McHuron, and accompanying essays by Raynes. McHuron’s paintings feature “Bert’s Birds,” but each work incorporates soft, spiritual reference to other wildlife.
Listening to these wise and talented Jackson sages is a special event, no matter your scientific or artistic expertise. A great idea for families. Bring your own brown bag lunch; treats will be on hand. Signed copies of the book will be available to purchase. All proceeds benefit the Meg and Bert Raynes Wildlife Fund, which supports Nature Mapping Jackson Hole, a project to gather data about wildlife for use in conservation efforts.
The Alliance offices are located at 685 South Cache, at the base of Snow King. Phone 307.733.9417. For more information about the book, log onto www.birdsofsageandscree.info.
Diehl Gallery hosts a Holiday Show Opening Reception on Thursday, December 16, 5-9 pm. And Sunday, December 19, drop into Diehl anytime between 11 am – 2 pm for a special Holiday Brunch. Stop by to see new work by gallery artists & sample some delectable holiday treats. AND, beginning Friday,December 17, and continuing through the ski season to March 25, 2011, the gallery will host a winter season of “Aprés Ski & Art,” every Friday from 5-9:00 pm. Late hours all winter: open until 9 pm, Tuesdays – Saturdays. New works by horse woman Ashley Collins are in to the gallery. www.diehlgallery.com
Altamira Fine Art’s Annual Christmas Show and an artist’s opening reception, takes place Friday, December 17, 5-7:00 pm. Gallery artists Amy Ringholz and Duke Beardsley will present small and, needless to say, very well priced, works—some “signature” pieces will also be on exhibit.
Big, bold and bright are these two artists. Western “camp.” Beardsley’s ranching background and knowledge inject his work with contemporary cowboy wit. His signature repetitive images of cowboys on horseback harken to the first 20th century photographic experiments depicting humans in motion. Beardsley’s bio notes that his work “blends modern artistic elements with the traditional icons of the west.” Beardsely went east to college–Middlebury College, my sister’s alma mater–and became immersed in the study of art history, particularly abstract expressionism and pop art.
Ringholz, a local favorite, keeps expanding her palette. Jewel-like colors prevail. “Amy’s vivid imagination sparked by boundless joy and a great amount of energy can be seen directly on each canvas. Painting with atypical color combinations using bold and saturated colors gives every animal their own playful personality,” says the gallery.
Additionally, Altamira will host a special holiday Chocolate, Dessert and Wine Limited Event on December 21, 5-8 pm. If you live in Jackson and savor exquisite chocolates, then don’t miss this ticketed event featuring internationally Awarded Pastry Chef Oscar Ortega from Atelier Ortega, and pairing Wines brought to you by Bob Merriman from Young’s Market Company. Ortega will be on hand, providing a “tour” of his culinary expertise and special chocolate chemistry.
Tickets for this limited event are $35 per person. Early booking highly recommended. Phone 307.739.4700.