Art Stroll

Art Stroll: Creating a Modern Guggenheim, Guggenheim NYC

A couple weeks ago when my godson visited we went to the Guggenheim Museum. The exhibition Creating a Modern Guggenheim showed a collection of Modern Artwork by six major art patrons. I thought it was a great way to have a walk through Modern Art and major Modern Artists and see if my young visitor would enjoy it.

He totally enjoyed the building – which I love myself very much.

And what a wonderful environment for this beautiful Calder Mobile!

It was fun to see more Calder Mobiles after just having been to the Whitney Exhibition on Calder.

What I loved about the collection was that there was a lot of early works by famous modern artists displayed and it was wonderful to see how from those early works they developed their distinctive styles later or dabbled in different areas – for some it felt as if you saw a study of their later work.

Two Kandinsky’s – the top one from 1913 and the one below from 1936. I loved seeing those two and see how his artwork was still the same and yet changed.

Which one of the two do you like better?

Beautiful van Gogh – It makes me want to try this swirly impasto style with some of the landscapes I saw during my recent travels through the Southwest.

An early Gaugin

An early Henri Rousseau – so tamed and restricted- I love his later paintings so much more. check him out!

Picasso -my godson did not like this at all – I could tell he wasn’t that much into cubism in the first place but all the earth tone colors totally put him off.

an early Robert Delaunay – gosh I love this one – and wow so different from his circular colorful forms later

Fernand Leger – above and below also dabbling in the style of cubism of the time and then later finding his own cubism style.

Here is a later one below

A Chagall below- …the colors are so obviously him

but the subject and painting itself …interesting …

This one by him I love love love! I cannot stop looking at all the details!

An early Piet Mondrian – uniquely his style but not yet at the primary color grid.

It was a massive collection of paintings and while I enjoyed it I would have loved staying longer or listening to the audio explanations of some but …there is only that much time a 17 year old wants to spent at a museum ;)  He wanted to go and I wanted to make sure he would not regret that by being held hostage there for longer than he wanted – hahahah ;) Hope you enjoyed the little Art Stroll.

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A Tourist in NYC

Two weeks ago when I came back from Germany, I brought my 17 year old godson with me and he stayed here for 8 days for his first trip to the States.

I basically did drop all work and decided to show him as much as he wanted and as we could possible do in this short time and it was fun for me to be a tourist in NYC for a change again.

We arrived midday and to beat the jet lag, after feeding him a real American Hamburger, we went for a short stint into the city taking the Path -which only takes 10 minutes to the WTC station. 17 years ago I called from the station from a pay phone while in the States to learn that my godson was born. We visited the 9/11 Memorial and then took the ferry back from Manhattan to Jersey City.

The next day we went to the Whitney Museum

My godson really loved the architecture of the building.

From there we walked a little bit on the High Line – such a cool place and such different view of the city.

Then we visited The Ink Pad since my godson wanted to get some watercolor paints and fine liners he had tried out in the morning in my studio. He is a really good sketcher- proud auntie here. Funny enough we bumped into Seth Apter, who had just also come from the Whitney and The High Line (you see- this is the way to go ;) ) .

And then we had a nice lunch at my favorite NY-Style pizza places – Village Pizza – and yes- he did it right – no fork and knife :)

On the way to the Washington Square Park we stopped at a party supply store…because seriously guys…nothing screams AMERICA more than a place like that ;) We took some pictures in case he would decide to become a famous rockstar …you never know when you need an album cover ;)

We then spent some time in the park watching street performers and people. It was HOT

A little bit more walking on Broadway to see the Flatiron Building 

And the Empire State Building.

And of course we couldn’t pass this photo option …oh – I love this so much !!!

And then we waited for my husband at Union Square and watched more people …if you are offended by the sign …sorry not sorry !

We took the subway to go to the Mets Stadium in Queens to watch a Mets vs. Yankees Baseball game. Pretty cool – you see the subway in the background, planes are flying over your head and you are just have a good time. Well – the boys did – they both played basketball when they were younger …I …to be honest…well…let’s put it that way…it is a biiiiiiittttt lonnnnnnnnggggg – but ok , my feet were pretty happy to sit for hours and hours- LOL

The third day was a bit tough as it was raining quite bad and it was really humid. We went to the Guggenheim Museum (more later)

and walked from there all the way though the Central Park – my godson loves walking as much as I do and hey- if you want to see NYC – that is the way to GO

typical street sighs …

Oh well and then …I had to do the REAL touristy thing …the thing I HATE …and which probably most New Yorkers hate …walk through Times Square but ok…you see, I really really love my godson, so I suffered through it since he wanted to see it ;)

We went to the movies for the evening- which was also.

On Saturday after the boys did a kayak tour on the Hudson River …yes …you gotta check it out – my husband does it all the time -it is organized by the Park Rangers at Liberty State Park and if you want to do something really cool that most tourists in NYC don’t even know about – there you go ;)

We then took the ferry to go to Ellis Island – which is especially interesting since my godson and I are from Hamburg, where most immigrants embarked from to go to America.

We went to see Lady Liberty

and after a nice dinner we fell to bed. Sunday we went to the Great Falls National Historical Park in Paterson and visited friends in the burbs …something different

Monday we had a really late start and we went to the East Village. We spent a lot of time at Strand Book Store – a heaven for book lovers like my godson and me. We also had the most delicious dessert at Eggloo – I am sorry I have no photo – but boy oh boy…yummmmmieee. Watched the partial eclipse, had a drink at Russ & Daughters and did some shopping …you know things teenager want ..sneakers, hoodies…and more ;)

The last day we went to Bryant Park

and the New York Public Library

and stopped at Barnes and Noble on 5th Avenue to discover my book Artful Adventures in Mixed Media in the shelf- which made me slight geek out – LOL

And we visited MoMA to see Rauschenberg and the Frank Loyd Wright exhibition as well as the permanent collection. My godson told me he loved MoMA most for the art, the Whitney for outside terraces and gallery representation and Guggenheim for its cool inside architecture – a mixture of all three museums would be his “perfect” museum :)

We topped the day off with the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center .

It was so much fun to have him. I think my favorite part of his visit was seeing him taking the city in for the first time – the wonder and the excitement – untamed and raw – it was so cool . It was an energizing visit- …well – my feet still think differently- LOL. Spending so much time with my favorite teenager was pretty pretty cool ;) Hey and L. if you read this …thanks for the good times – love ya! P.S.- hey- those photos of you were approved by you- no whining ;)

Comments (8)

  • Karen Bearse


    Really enjoyed reading this!! Makes me want to tourist in NY for sure!! Funny thing I was watching Seth’s Insta Live when he went into the Ink Pad & bumped into you. You sure packed a lot in a few days.


  • stephanie


    What a great gift to share NYC with him. It looks like you both had a great time!


  • Seth


    So much fun running into you both!!


  • Sue Clarke


    I love the Flatiron Building. The shot of your godson with wings and the album cover are very cool!
    Great pic of Lady Liberty as well. Looks like you had a blast and I bet the memories from this trip will be discussed for a lifetime.
    Thanks for sharing your visit with us.


  • Crystal


    Will you be my Godmother? I’m available. :-)

    You showed your godson an amazing time and I am happy for you both–the Flatiron and Ellis Island just do it for me! I still need to visit the New York Public Library, but I have seen photos and heard stories that, as an ex-library operative, left me longing to see it in person. My sister and I used to do New York together and I miss it…


  • Michelle Hernandez


    This really makes me miss New York. I love those wings! I’m TOTALLY gonna pose in front of those when I visit comes Christmas time! And look how beautiful the High Line looks-waaaah. :) The only more American thing to do while in a party store in front of the picnic paper plates is eat a hotdog while posing in your American flag jacket.


  • Donna B.


    Wow Nathalie! Looks like both of you had a wonderful time!!! Loved seeing the pics and hearing about everything you did!


  • Janis Loehr


    Yikes! I’m exhausted just reading this!!! Godson is lucky to have a great personal tour by someone who clearly loves NYC. On his next visit he’ll have to experience a different view of America. Very happy for you!


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Stroll Through the Hood – August 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

I know I have posted photos of this view from Liberty State Park several times- but for me it just doesn’t get old!

Here is a newly painted tower at the edge of the park by Mr Mustart.

Kind of in the hood – a little stroll on the Highline early in the morning – what a great time to be there – and seing a little glimpse of a mural by PixelPancho.

And on the walk to the subway a mural by Osgemeos – I love the pants- they are made off all kinds of different flags.

In the East Village this awesome door – love the patterns, the hair, the writing :)


Close by the former Adath Jeshurun of Jassy Synagogue, which I believe now has artist studios in it – I hope it is not just abandoned. What a great building.

In the Bowery a Shepard Fairey – I love how the wall is decaying and the purple paint underneath is crackling through again.

And in Jersey City this mural by Nychos

On a construction wall around the corner a paste up by Dylon Egon

And of course…as I am such a dork for elephants …and btw- this has been a block from my place for a long time – how did I miss it so far – by Mr. Prvrt

And last but not least my new fire red bike with which I am strolling through the hood a lot this summer. As you can see I found a piece of drift wood on the water side on that tour, so of course that had to come with me ;)

Hope you enjoyed this stroll and that you had a great time strolling around in your own hood for some inspiration as well.

Comments (1)

  • Sue Clarke


    As always it was nice to see what you discovered on your stroll.
    I love older buildings and especially like the photo Adath Jeshurun of Jassy Synagogue.
    BTW, I started to read your book while on vacation and took lots of pics looking at sculptures on an outdoor tour and went back to the cottage and did a mixed media page based on the inspiration that I got from one of them.
    I don’t think that the art based on a specific inspiration “clicked” for me before reading your book.
    So thanks!


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Art Stroll: Medrie MacPhee at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery

Natalya Aikens and I did a little gallery tour a couple weeks ago and we also stopped by to see Medrie MacPhee at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery in NYC.

Her artwork were Collages made out of pieces of clothes and oil paint.

I liked how the collages seemed like maps of some sort and how the flatness is interrupted with pieces of cloths which you start to diessect and try to read.


Buttons, pockets, seams and zippers.

Medrie McPhee also uses dried acrylic skins and applies them as elements into her work. She calls those acrylic transfers.

I find the collages intriguing, at first glance it feels as if they invite you to linger and to try to make sense of these maps.

And then I start to feel annoyed because there seems to be not enough to get a grip on it. I need the code:)

It was definitely great to go on an art stroll with Natalya again. It also reminded me that I should visit galleries more often :) Thanks Natalya – cannot wait for our next outing!

Comments (4)

  • Karen Bearse


    Interesting my creative wheels started spinning right away!


  • Jean Goza


    Fascinating. As a sewist and fabric lover, I really enjoyed seeing the “components” of fashion broken down in a very simple form. With the addition of paint, it changed the form to collage. It did indeed look like a road map. For me, the map led me to bounce between what was and what is. I love the unique vision of this artist.

    Thanks Nat for another fun art stroll.


    • Nathalie Kalbach


      So glad you liked this stroll Jean and I love how you described what you see and think then looking at the artwork. Thank you for sharing!


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Art Stroll: Anselm Kiefer – Transition From Cool To Warm

A couple days ago my artist friend Natalya Aikens and I went into the city to go to the Gagosian Gallery to see Anselm Kiefer‘s work. If you participated in Creative Jumpstart 2016,  you know that Kiefer is one of my all time favorite artists. When Natalya told me about this exhibition I was crazy excited – and I wasn’t disappointed.

Kiefer is mostly known for his gigantic textured paintings, but he also paints with watercolor on a smaller scale and this exhibition at the Gagosian Gallery shows those two different bodies of works. It fits since Kiefer is interested in opposites.

Anselm Kiefer, For Segantini: die bösen Mütter (For Segantini: The Bad Mothers), 2011–12, oil, emulsion, acrylic, shellac, wood, metal, lead, and sediment of an electrolysis on canvas.

I love how Kiefer incorporates all kinds of materials and he doesn’t really care that a painting could change through aging, or natural alterations. In fact he welcomes this. He says he is more interested in the process – not only the process of making art but also the process of what happens to a painting naturally later – than in an absolute result. I think this is a totally freeing, interesting and open minded approach to art and life.

Anselm Kiefer aller Tage Abend, aller Abende Tag (The Evening of All Days, the Day of All Evenings), 2014 Watercolor on paper

Anselm Kiefer Ignis sacer, 2016 Oil, acrylic, and emulsion on canvas

Anselm Kiefer des Malers Atelier (The Painter’s Studio), 2016 Oil, emulsion, acrylic, and shellac on canvas

What I found interesting about his watercolor work was how freely he uses the colors, letting them do their thing – something I struggle with then using this paint medium.

Anselm Kiefer Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen (The Waves of Sea and Love), 2017 Oil, emulsion, acrylic, and lead on canvas

Look at Natalya taking a picture of me taking picture of her in front of a picture …well – hey … little bit of fun is ok ;)

For this painting Kiefer poured liquid lead on top of a painting and then pealed it back to reveal the original painting again.

Kiefer also makes a huge amount of Artist Books. He is fascinated by books and stories, they have always played a huge role in his artwork.

In an interview he once told the interviewer that he starts his morning by going into his library and in a state of still being absence, he blindly grabs a book which usually turns out to be just the right book for the day and often inspires him for his artwork.

These books are quite big – which is hard to see in these photos  – they are more sculptural than books and you are tempted to touch them and flip the pages, although given how heavy they look that might be something you need more arm muscles …and you might never be able to set foot in this gallery again ;)

I love the marbling effects Kiefer created – with plaster – maybe gesso and watercolor.

Klingsor’s Garden was the room with all those books called. Klingsor is a magician in the opera Parsifal. He has a garden full of beautiful flower maids.

The way those books are set up is like a labyrinth and I guess it is no coincidence that you might get lost in looking at those books from all angles.


Anselm Kiefer, Und Du bist doch Maler geworden (and you became a painter nethertheless)

I didn’t see it in the gallery as this is a huge painting but when I actually took a look at the photo of the painting at home I realized there is painter’s palette carved into the painting – a painting about painting.

Anselm Kiefer, Aurora, 2015–17, oil, emulsion, acrylic, shellac, and sediment of an electrolysis on canvas

The texture and dimension in his work is just unreal . You have to see his work in person.

Given that this painting is so new- I would bet that it is still changing, drying, and processing. Now …if that is what the artist likes and wants… who are we to preserve it and have conservators going nuts about up-keeping the status quo?

When I first looked at Kiefer’s watercolors I thought they were so different to his big paintings because of the missing texture but the closer I looked, the more I realized that he actually included a lot of texture with charcoal in some of them – and then there is also a lot of visual texture especially in the one above. But even the ones I showed earlier in this post have areas of texture quite unusual for watercolor painting.

In one of the videos I saw a while back about Kiefer’s work I saw him hacking with a machete into his thickly layered painting. Big pieces of paint chips fly off the canvas, revealing yet even still thick layers of paint underneath. There was something so liberating and yet shocking seeing his actions.

I love the beauty that get’s revealed by the act of slashing, scraping and peeling.

I also loved how some of the books had these raw edges – and as a viewer who always makes up their own story when looking at artwork for me Kiefer’s work is about human beings.

We are complicated, controversial, complex, layered, good and bad, we change, we can transform. Behind all the ugliness of human beings are always layers of beauty. There are no monsters and that is for me what explains why people can be horrible and cruel but then also be loving and like-able. That is what in my eyes his artwork represents.

This exhibition has inspired me to no end – lot’s of thoughts, ideas, craving to explore. If you are in NYC – check this exhibition out– it got extended and it is open until September 1st. Don’t be intimidated that it is a gallery – the people at the desk barely lift their head when you come in- they know you are not there to buy but it seemed utterly fine for them and I think Kiefer approves ;)

Comments (4)

  • Janis Loehr


    Thank you Nathalie for sharing!


  • stephanie


    What an amazing exhibit!


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Stroll Through the Hood – July 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

When I had to go to get an MRI after hurting my shoulder playing table tennis (yes…you heard right) – I had to walk underneath the turnpike – ugly ugly- but there was a bit of Norman Kirby Fence Art to make the feel better. The funniest thing – the tongue on the right moved in the wind :)

I love how the color bands come out of the R and the movement in this mural.

This is the Historic Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery again – they had an Oddity Market there one weekend and ha- that is a great location for this. I loved seeing the Before I die… Wall there. I thought it was so clever to have it at a cemetery what a fitting place for this public art project. I did a painting a long time ago called “Before I die, I want to become the person that I am ” – but I think it is time to do this again in my art journal and think about it :)

I also found humor in seeing those to guys in sitting in the grass in between the headstones typing on their cellphones ;)

Ok – this one is a bit cheated- as it wasn’t in my walkable hood – but close enough – I went to a U2 concert and our General Admission spot was spot on ;) Well…it pays when you go with friends who are die-hard U2 fans and know the ins and outs of where to stand at the tour- LOL. Love the swirls- the whole concert was a feast for the eyes.

Of course there was 4th July celebration – we had a small party on our deck and saw several fireworks at the same time -here to the left the NYC Macy’s firework on and on the right at the same time the Jersey City firework.

And this one was apparently a “personal” one  – in the neighborhood – but I take it-as the next day was my birthday- so basically I get free fireworks for my birthday- not too shabby, right? This reminded me of ink/paint splatters.

And those here are also a bit cheated- but hey- I am the boss of my hood- LOL- and this month Manhattan belonged to it too- I mean…I can basically just spit over the river from my hood. We went to the Freedom Tower with family as part of a family day. What a view. Look at the reflection in the skyscraper – I love that- I want to do something with this in one of my paintings.

And oh man ….amazing. It never ceases to amaze me to look at Manhattan from that perspective – it looks all so unreal and orderly and cool. It made me really itch to continue my big Manhattan painting, I am working on for a while now.

And – just because- Jersey City from the Manhattan side- HA  – at Battery Park. I love the juxtaposition between plants and garden and skyscrapers.

And just for fun – I am sure my sister in law at a different idea when she wanted a photo of the girls- but here we are, my niece and I being goofy and my sis in law being her awesome self ;)

Hope you enjoyed this stroll through the hood – until next time!

Comments (6)

  • Jackie P Neal


    Great stroll Nathalie!
    And happy birthday to you and America! This is your first 4th of July being an actual citizen of the US -right? I hope it was special for you! Congrats!


  • Robin S.


    I truly enjoy your strolls through the ‘hood. I may have made a comment like this before, but I am a country girl through and through and am amazed by how much beauty there is to be found if a person is willing to look for it with an open mind; you are a constant source of inspiration to me. LOVE that reflection in the skyscraper!! Keep up your creativity, imagination, and free spirit!


    • Nathalie Kalbach


      Awe – thank you so much Robin! Have a wonderful and creative week!


  • Sue Clarke


    Love the reflection in the side of the building and what a view of the city!
    I totally enjoy strolls through your hood especially since they are so different from mine.
    I see wildlife and no street art (bummer).
    Happy belated birthday and keep that inspiration coming.


    • Nathalie Kalbach


      Thank you sue! Yeah – wildlife is pretty cool too – that is what I am missing here ;)


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Art Stroll: Where We Are – Whitney, NYC

A couple of weeks ago I went to the Whitney to see the Calder exhibition – which was fantastic- but I also took some time for the Where We Are exhibition with selections from the Whitney’s collection 1900-1960.

“Where We Are traces how artists have approached the relationships, institutions and activities that shape our lives. The Exhibition is organized in five themes: family and community, work, home, the spiritual and the nation. During the six decades covered in the exhibition, the U.S. experiences war and peace, collapse and recovery, and social discord and progress. The artists and their works suggest that our sense of self is composed of our responsibilities, places and beliefs. Where We Are is titled after a phrase in W.H. Auden’s poem “September 1, 1939”. The title of the poem marks the date Germany invaded Poland. While it’s subject is the beginning of the war, Auden’s true theme is how the shadow of a global emergency reaches into the far corners of everyday life. Where we Are shares Auden’s guarded optimism, gathering a constellation of artists, whose light might lead us forward.”

Ellsworth Kelly, 1961 – Red, White and blue – Oil on linen

Ellsworth Kelly’s earliest works of art were created in service to the United States, as part of a special camouflage unit in France during World War II. Kelly and his fellow artist-soldiers were tasked with fooling the Germans—using rubber and wood to construct fake tanks and trucks—into thinking the multitudes of Allied troops on the battlefield were much larger than reality. While this seems an unconventional early training for an artist, it proved a fitting one for Kelly. After his service, Kelly enrolled in the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. After knowing this – doesn’t the painting now feel like a camouflage flag? ;)

Herman Trunk, Jr., Mount Vernon, 1932.  Oil on canvas

Jasper Johns, 1958 – three Flags, Encaustic on canvas

Johns saw the American flag as a symbol that is usually “seen and not looked at, not examined”. The execution and composition of Three Flags encourages close inspection. What do you think, is the middle panel actually fully painted with the flag or not? Apparently it is still a bit of a mystery although infrared hints it is incomplete.

Jasper Johns, 1959, watercolor and graphite on fond paper

Having just seen the Rauschenberg exhibition at MoMA this made me excited – and I love the mail-art.

George Grosz, 1947-48, Waving the Flag, Watercolor on paper

Marsden Hartley, 1914-15, Painting, Number 5, Oil on linen

Marsden Hartley began this work before the First World War, during an extended stay in Berlin. The painting is a memorial to Karl von Freyburg, a young German officer whom Hartley loved and who was killed in battle soon after the war began. The way he painted has the effect of a collage.

Jacob Lawrence, 1946 and 1947- War series – Tempura on composition board

I had never seen the war series by Lawrence before and it really grabbed me. He painted the series while serving during WWII. These paintings are timeless and the narrative is ingrained in our heads with wars we have experienced or know about.

I would like to go back and see the other paintings in the gallery in this series with more time- but it was quite full that day.

Archibald Motley Jr., 1948 – Gettin’ Religion, Oil on linen

Archibald Motley’s primary artistic inspiration were the inhabitants of Chicago’s South Side, a culturally thriving neighborhood at the time. In this night scene he captured the full spectrum of urban experiences.

Charles Demuth, 1930- Buildings, Lancaster – Oil and graphite pencil on composition board

Louise Bourgeois, 1941 – Quarantania 1941 – painted wood

Soon after emigration from Paris to New York 1938 Louise Bourgeois made this sculpture. Quarantania resembles a group of standing figures huddled together and reimagines people she has left behind in her native France. Additionally the five elements might also evoke sewing needles or weaving shuttles, tools used in her family’s tapestry restoration trade.

James Castle, Interior with Stove and below Shed, Soot and spit on found paper.

I had never heard before of James Castle who lived from 1899-1977, but boy did his story and his paintings touch me.  Castle was profoundly deaf from birth.

He never learned to speak, sing, read or write; largely unschooled and self-taught he developed his own techniques for creating works of art and used his art as a tool for communcation. To make his black-and-white-drawings, he combined salvia with soot from a wood-burning stove and used sharpened sticks, sometimes fruit pits,  to apply the mixture to his paper.

James Castle, 1910- 77 , artist’s books with sooth and spit on found paper

In addition to the numerous works on paper, James Castle produced hundreds if not thousands of handmade books. Using commercial food packaging or heavy paper as covers, he stitched together blank pages and filled them with drawings of letters, pictographic symbols, collections of mock photos and sketches based on advertisements.

He frequently made use of both sides of papers he found around the house- flattened matchstick boxes, ice-cream carton lids, envelopes and even his niece’s old homework assignment. Amazing!


Andy Warhol, 1961 -$199 Television – acrylic and oil stick on canvas

I love this – it hints of things to come but still shows an artist hand – Warhol’s.

Minnie Evans, 1935 – My Very First and My Second

Minnie Evans crated both drawings on Good Friday when she was 43 years old. She said a spiritual force compelled her to begin drawing – these are her very first drawings hinting at the subjects of her later work – biblical imagery, plants and fantastical bests.

Morris Louis, 1958 -Tet – Acrylic on canvas

Morris Louis learned the method of staining unprimed canvas from fellow artist Helen Frankenthaler. He had a really small studio and this canvas is massive. For a long time no-one really could figure out how he made these big paintings. Conservators found out that he would roll the canvas in portions and pour, and then re-roll the canvas and dry and then continue. So he never saw the entirety of the painting while working on it.

Joseph Stella, 1939, The Brooklyn Bridge

This looks so timeless again – I love this painting of the Brooklyn Bride.

It was a great exhibition, thought provoking and interesting. It is open now and does not have an end date yet. Check it out when you are at The Whitney!

Comments (2)

  • Kim


    Wow! The technique used by Morris Louis was a surprise! How cool!


  • Sue Clarke


    The artist books by James Castle struck me the most. I can only imagine what it meant for him to be able to communicate through drawing.


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Book Signing at The Ink Pad, NYC

Last week my book Artful Adventures in Mixed Media was officially released and The Ink Pad in NYC invited me to have a book signing. It was so much fun!

I was really excited and I was really happy to see so many wonderful people coming to this event.

So cool to see Kathy who I had just met a couple months ago in my class in Ohio at Artiscape made a short trip to The Ink Pad while on a NYC trip. Thank you so much – it was so wonderful seeing you again!


Can you see how giddy I am? We have this saying in Germany: “If I hadn’t have ears, I would have smiled in a circle.” I assure you …I would have ;)

Thank you to all of you who came and celebrate this special day with me and to Anna from The Ink Pad. <3 You are amazing!

And if you are not in the area but still would like to have a signed copy- I will sign Artful Adventures in Mixed Media where ever I teach in the next couple months (See my In-Person Workshops here) . Or order one of my free bookplate stickers, which I will sign for you and send out for free to you.

Comments (6)

  • Jackie P Neal


    I am thrilled and over the moon excited for you and your new publication!! How fabulous that you have put together this book- can’t wait to get my copy!
    Yes, your success is Truly! well deserved- I do believe you are unstoppable! Best wishes to you!
    Jackie xo


    • Nathalie Kalbach


      Awe- thank you so much Jackie! Hope you will like the book and that it is coming soon :)
      Have a gorgeous weekend!


  • Stephanie


    How fab! So great that Kathy was able to stop in during her trip


  • Sue Clarke


    I look pretty giddy with my signed (bookplate) book!!!
    Enjoy it Nat, your success is well deserved.


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Art Stroll: Rauschenberg Among Friends Part 2

As promised Part 2 of my visit of the Rauschenberg Among Friends Exhibition – you can read about Part 1 here. When you are reading this I have been already back to the show and have scheduled another visit next week …I am obsessed- HELP – LOL

“Ace”(1962) , Oil, paper, cardboard, paint-can label, umbrella, doorknob, fabric, wood, nails, and metal on canvas – on five panels

I love how reading the signage becomes the start of a scavenger hunt trying to find all elements mentioned on the panels.

“Black Market” (1961), Oil, watercolor, pencil, paper, fabric, newspaper, printed paper, printed reproductions, wood, metal, tin, street sign, license plate and four metal clipboards on canvas with rope, chain and wood suitcase containing rubber stamps, ink pad and typed instructions regarding objects to be given and taken by viewers

Black Market was first on view in Amsterdam in 1961 and viewers were invited to take out an object from the suitcase and replace it with their own and then make a drawing of their contribution on one of the clipboards. Unfortunately people were mostly just stealing the objects in the suitcase and so Rauschenberg withdrew his invitation. – I just love the concept and thought -so sad it didn’t work out!

“Pilgrim” (1960), Oil, graphite, printed paper and fabric on canvas with painted wood chair.

If you look closely you can see that Rauschenberg actually used the chair as a painting tool to drag down the paint in the canvas and then attached the chair as an collage element. It looks as if you are invited to take a seat to be part of the painting- but Natalya and I refrained from doing so – LOL.

Marcel Duchamp “Bottle Rack” 1960

Rauschenberg purchased this work for three dollars after he saw it in an exhibition, and then asked Duchamp to sign the work. Duchamp agreed and signed and left an inscription saying “Impossible for me to recall the original phrase” . Jokesters- LOL- I wonder how much this readymade art piece is worth nowadays.

I loved how the exhibition was laid out – and of course early morning hours are the best to ensure a more empty space.

“scanning” (1963) Oil and silkscreen -ink print on canvas

the canvas includes a photo of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company with Steve Paxton how lived with Rauschenberg when the piece was made.

The paw prints here were added by Sweetie, Rauschenberg’s pet kinkajou who strolled across the canvas while Rauschenberg was making it on the floor of his studio. He simply embraced the accident as part of the work. HA YES!

“Overdrive” (1963) Oil and silkscreen -ink print on canvas

I am so in love with this piece and the one below

“Estate” (1963) Oil and silkscreen -ink print on canvas

Rauschenberg started in the early 60s to use more and more readymade images into his paintings and visited Andy Warhol in the studio in 1962 to get an intro into the silkscreen technique. He had a friend destroy his stock of screens to avoid the pressure of repeating himself in his artwork.

I could look at them forever- and as you can see below the paintings are actually quite big.

“Volon” (1971)

Come on- admit…this makes you look at your boxes in a whole different way, no?

Untitled (1972) – Tape and cardboard boxes with rubber hose.

and so something that some people call trash becomes a piece of artwork – I love it!

“Sor Aqua” (1973) Wood and metal suspended with rope over water-filled bathtub with glass jug.

Rauschenberg found the inspiration for this piece in Venice – where he gathered found materials for a series of assemblages. The water- filled bathtub evokes the Venetian canals, the suspended tangle of rusted metal refers to aging, deteriorated surfaces throughout the city.

“Mirthday Man” (1997) Water-soluble inkjet dye and pigment transfer on plylaminate

You can find an x-ray of Rauschenberg which he called “self-portrait of inner man” and surrounded it with photographs he had taken over the year. Rauschenberg created this piece in one day on his 72nd birthday.

“Bible Bike” (1991) Tarnishes on brass, bronze and copper

The imagery and coloration in the metal painting series, Borealis, was produced through chemical reactions (which Rauschenberg called “corrosions”), sometimes with the addition of acrylic paint. Tarnishing agents, such as acetic acid and ammonium salts, are brushed or silkscreened onto brass, copper, or bronze surfaces, resulting in a muted range of colors: green, brown, or black, depending on the type of metal support. By painting or drawing with a tarnish-resistant medium before applying the tarnishing agent, the artist could create coloristic variations by contrasting the tarnished and untarnished metal.

I hope you enjoyed the Art Stroll- you can find all Art Strolls here on my website. But seriously if you are in NYC visit this exhibition – it is open until September 17, 2017.

Comments (1)

  • Sue Clarke


    I just love “scanning” and the pet paw prints!
    Thanks for all the photos.


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