First Friday in Tehachapi for September featured a number of artists and art venues, including a new gallery.
Gallery 'N' Gifts, a local artist guild, celebrated its 40th year in Tehachapi. Having hosted and promoted hundreds of local artists over those years, the celebration is special just in the fact that it's survived many economic downturns and still flourishes as a showcase for Tehachapi artists. The gallery has been in the same location at the corner of Green Street and Tehachapi Boulevard all 40 years.
Every month an artist is selected to be the Featured Artist of The Month. Illustrator and art teacher Ramon Ramirez is September's artist. Ramirez has exhibited nationally and internationally since the early '70s. The recently retired elementary school teacher is an art teacher and mentor at his private studio in Lancaster. He worked for many years at Disneyland as a sidewalk caricature artist.
“Speed and turnover was important and working in pastel chalk made this possible. I like my art to make people smile," Ramirez said.
Friday night's festivities also included the addition of a new venue. the Colleen Farrell Gallery.
Two artists are featured this month. Jim Wilson is a lon time Tehachapi resident and artist. Wilson earned his B.A in fine arts from Cal State Northridge in the '70s. Working in acrylic paint on canvas, his work is rich in depictions of realistic street scenes and nonrepresentational geometric designs, examples of which are currently displayed in the gallery front windows.
The second featured artist is Deanie Ramsauer Zeitlin. Her landscapes are deeply influenced by her 18 years as an international airline flight attendant.
Gallery owner Colleen Farrell and her fellow invited guest instructors teach various painting techniques in a variety of mixed mediums as well as 3-D art pieces and ceramics. The gallery is located on Tehachapi Boulevard across from Railroad Park and the water tower.