Monday, December 6, 2010

"Tuscan Inspiration" A Painting Workshop in Italy With Sandra Kaplan

above: "Looking West" acrylic by Sandra Kaplan

Announcing my next Italian workshop, coming September 17 to September 27, 2011, near Lucca, Italy. This will be my third visit to Selva, and one that I eagerly anticipate.

Please join me for ten glorious days in Tuscany

You’ll enjoy excursions to charming hill towns, seaside villages, the Chianti region, Lucca, Baroque gardens, Renaissance estates and villas, farmhouses, wineries and olive mills . . . all for 2300 Euros.

The price is inclusive of everything from the time you are picked up at the Pisa airport or Lucca train station until you are returned there with the exception of three lunches to give you independent painting time. Instruc-tion, inspiration and coaching from Sandra Kaplan, as well as meals, wine, off-site excursions with guides, a cooking lesson and gracious accommodations are all part of the workshop fee. Airfare is not included in the course price.

To see complete course description,

details and booking forms, visit

or contact:

You’ll be a Guest in a 15th Century Tuscan Farmhouse

The rustic country home of Selva has been lovingly restored yet retains all the charm of its origins on the 1000-year-old Tenuta di Forci wine and olive oil estate, a uniquely preserved property in the Lucca hills. Selva’s old barn, with its traditional latticed terra cotta windows, houses our cooking school kitchen, a rustic room with mod-ern equipment. The grand fireplace and wood-fired oven add to the old world ambience while guests appreciate 21st century comfort with modern bath-rooms, central heating and spacious rooms.

Lucca . . . . its Renaissance walls enclose a perfectly preserved medieval treasure house only 20 minutes from Selva. You can join the Lucchese in their evening passeggiata (stroll) through the streets, sip a cappuccino in Puccini’s fa-vorite bar and enjoy a gelato in a shaded piazza.

Lucca is also a shopper’s para-dise for linens, laces, leather, ceramics and its famous regional olive oil.

The Tuscan Painting Workshop offers you wonderful food for the body as well as the soul. Meals are prepared in the Tuscan style, and you’ll enjoy making your own pizza on our traditional pizza night. Pre-dinner aperitivi and antipasti under the leafy pergola provide time for friendly and helpful critiques of the day’s painting. Some evenings present the opportunity to attend a special event, such as a musical concert in the Duomo or a retrospective of a local artist’s work.

Selva’s shady pergola as interpreted by Sandra Kaplan in her “Terraza”

In the Abbondanza Toscana kitchen, you can complement your painting artistry as you join our Tuscan chef in the kitchen to learn how to prepare regional specialties. Fresh and locally produced ingredients are the key to the wonderful foods you’ll enjoy with us. Whether you are an experienced cook, taste-tester, or wine pourer, all are wel-come in our kitchen.

Painting themes on the estate include vineyards, olive groves, flower gardens, the rustic winery and olive mill, farmhouses, chestnut groves and majestic cypress trees. Plus you’ll find all manner of charming vignettes with overflowing pots of flowers and lemon trees, our gardens filled with herbs and vegetables, colorful ce-ramics and rustic brickwork.

Even the humble orto (vegetable garden) provides inspiration in Sandra Kaplan’s “Selva Orto”

Excursions away from the farmhouse have been chosen with your painter’s eye in mind:

The jewel city of Lucca with its romantic by-ways, Romanesque churches, and its famous walls that were once a fortification and now offer a tree-lined boulevard for walking and biking. Plus we’ll spend one day at a formal Lucca garden with its statuary, lemon grove and architectural features.

Enchanting Chianti hill towns will charm you with their piazzas, colorful markets, balcony gardens, and tiny restaurants, pleasing to the art-ist’s palette and palate.

Seaside visit to our favorite fishing village where an imposing fortress, colorful boats and views of the Gulf of Poets are waiting to inspire you . . . or the fresh seafood lunch you can enjoy.

Ancient stone bridge, known locally as Devil’s Bridge, the arched structure was built in the 11th century. Find a perfect spot for sketching the unique architecture.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

"Best Curated Show"

Many thanks to all who voted for my show as "Best Curated Show".
"I Paint Therefore I Am" was selected as the winner.
I'm especially grateful to the artists who produced such a beautiful show: Suzanne Kramer, Kathy Knaus, Elke McGuire, Terry Buswell, Tina Rowe, Mat Hardwick, Lynn Feiger, and Katharine Smith Warren. And to Cheryl Spector and Denise Robert for providing such an accommodating space and support for the exhibit.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"Best Curated Show"

Those of you who have been reading my blog know that last spring, I curated a painting show, "I Paint Therefore I Am" at the 910 Arts Gallery in Denver.

I recently was informed that I'm a finalist in the category "Best Curated Show" in the " Art District Best of 2010 ".

So if you'd like to vote for me, (and I hope you will) please go to:
and cast your ballot.

Be sure to click on "Submit" when you're finished.

And Thanks!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Art Show and Sale

This Sunday, a number of my small works are included in a show and sale at Denver's historic McCourt Mansion, 555 8th Avenue at Pearl Street, Denver 80203, from 10 AM to 3 PM. Make sure to come, and take one of the scheduled tours of the mansion. Perhaps you'll even see a friendly ghost or two.

Ghosts and Art- a hard combination to beat!

I'll be selling the T-shirt I designed as a fund raiser for the Rocky Mountain PeriAnesthesia Nurses Association. You can see the design above. The image was drawn on my IPhone in the "Brushes" program, my new sketch book and favorite art toy. The cost of the t-shirt is $18, and a portion will benefit RMPNA.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Plein Air Painting From Cannon Beach

What summer was that?

It seems as if it was yesterday that I was packing up my bags and art supplies to teach a June workshop in Cannon Beach, Oregon, just two hours from Portland.

I'll spare you most of the gory details, but in the middle of my workshop, I had a silly argument with an exacto knife, finished the workshop, flew home to Denver to have my tendon and nerve reattached at University of Colorado Health Sciences center, and have been re-cooperating and doing physical therapy ever since.

Above is one plein air painting from that trip, still wet from it's finishing touches done in the studio. It's a 12" x 16" acrylic of the coastal rocks as seen from the cliffs of Ecola State Park. More to come.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Portrait of Matt Hardwick Painting His Self Portrait

This is a photo I took of our pond this winter - there is a patch of snow on a rock that looked like the eye Matt is painting in his portrait below.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Invitation to Tea

To enlarge image, please click on the word "Artists".

Tonight on Channel 12

KBDI PBS has won the Colorado Broadcasters Association 2009 Award of Excellence for Allen True's West
Special Encore Presentation Tonight:
Allen True's WestAllen True's West

To mark the final week of the Allen
True’s West exhibits at the Colo-
rado History Museum and Denver
Art Museum, KBDI presents this en-
core presentation of ALLEN
TRUE'S WEST, a KBDI original
production that showcases the life
and art of Colorado’s foremost
muralist, whose later work captured
the character of a region in trans-
ition from wild frontier to the modern

Friday, March 19, 2010

Cancellation of Autism Society Event

Sorry friends, but if any of you were planning tonight to attend the benefit for the Colorado Autism Society at 910Arts Gallery, it has been cancelled because of the snow.

Where are all those tough Coloradoans when you need them?

If the event is re-scheduled, I'll let you know. Meanwhile, please pass the word.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Press from "I Paint Therefore I Am"

Here are some of the press clippings from the show I curated at 910Arts show.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

"I Paint Therefore I Am" at 910Arts in Denver

In my first serious curatorial effort, I introduce a group of artists who are in the early stages of showing professionally.

The artists of “I Paint Therefore I Am” share a strong visual sense, an individual personal view of the world, and clarity about image and color. These artists have each studied with me, and it has been my joy to watch them emerge as accomplished, mature painters.

If you live in or near Denver, please join us for the opening of "I Paint Therefore I Am" at the 910 Arts Event Center, 910 Santa Fe Drive, on Friday evening, March 5, from 6 to 9 PM.

In addition to the First Friday opening, a number of special events surround the show, Including a benefit for the Autism Society, a Saturday afternoon Artist's Tea, and Movie Night with a film introduced by film critic, filmmaker and teacher Robert Denerstein. See the dates and times of these events below.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Only 3 Artist' Spots Left!

Response to the announcement about my Cannon Beach workshop has been very exciting. We have only 3 participant spots left, so if you'd like to come, get your deposit in soon!
Just to clear up one misunderstanding (my fault) from the announcement of the workshop - the workshop ends after breakfast Friday morning, June 11. We will not be painting as a class that day.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Cannon Beach Artist's Retreat

Above: Sandra Kaplan's watercolor of rocks in Squirrel Island, Maine

The response to this upcoming workshop has been exciting. A number of deposits have already been received. If you are thinking of joining this group, please contact me or just send in your deposit to insure your place.

Happy New Year!