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LOCAL ART ENTHUSIASTS PLANNING EXHIBIT TO PAIR IMAGES, WORDS.

Byline: P. Catherine Shanks Community Columnist

A matching of mediums makes for a large exhibit, if a small committee of poets and artists has anything to say about it. The Conejo Valley Poetry Society, in association with the Arts Council of the Conejo Valley, is accepting submissions of work for its first art and poetry show, titled Infusion '99.

``Initially, we were concerned that the selection process could be a monster task,'' said Dan Kozlowski, a committee member and Conejo Valley Poetry Society treasurer.

The committee hopes to exhibit as many as possible of the paired submissions in the Thousand Oaks Community Gallery this July.

``I expect we'll be inundated at the last minute,'' said Kozlowski, noting that more than a dozen applicants have committed to submitting works so far. He said that the committee anticipates more than 200 entries.

Pairing the visual arts with poetry is the brainchild of Conejo Valley Poetry Society Director J.P. Gorham. A poet and chairman of the 1999 Thousand Oaks Arts Festival, Gorham considers the juried exhibit an opportunity to expand art appreciation in the community. The show also gives local poets a unique chance to showcase their writings in an art gallery space.

``There are quite a few people who are doing this individually already,'' Gorham said.

Poets who dare to dabble in painting and sculpture and the like, and artists who feel they have a way with the written word are welcome to submit one creative form without the other. In early April, those submitting only half of the required pairing will be invited to a ``matchmaker'' session, where they will view slides of unattached artwork and examples of orphaned poetry. Only paired works will be eligible for judging and awards.

``We really don't know what way it's going to go,'' Kozlowski said. ``There's a size limit on the poetry. Other than that, we're pretty wide open.''

Art and poetry integrated into a single piece, art and poetry submitted as the paired works of one or more artists, and art or poetry submitted for pairing with another work will be considered for showing. Fifty or 60 pairs will be chosen.

Committee member Sheri Spinner hopes her autobiographical watercolor piece will be among those selected.

``Doing an exhibit like this is like a personal issue for me,'' Spinner said. ``The show is a very good opportunity for people who are any kind of artists to build self-confidence, to branch out and to gain exposure in the community.''

Gorham emphasized the importance of the show for artists and writers. ``Buyers and publishers might attend,'' he said, adding, ``You never know who might show up and where the experience might take you.''

Infusion '99 is set to run July 9 through Aug. 1. Winners will receive cash prizes, gift certificates, ribbons and a chance to display the winning works at the Thousand Oaks Arts Council Center and at Borders Books and Music.

Michael Collings, Pepperdine University's writing department chairman, respected artists Phyllis Doyon and Judy Koenig, and former Verve Magazine editor Ron Reichick will judge the entries. For consideration, all works must be submitted by mid-May.

For more information or to obtain a prospectus, call the Conejo Valley Poetry Society at (888) 975-1239.

CAPTION(S):

2 Photos

PHOTO (1--Color) J.P. Gorham, left, and Eunice Udelf discuss the upcoming Infusion '99 show in Thousand Oaks, which will pair artists with writers.

(2) Clockwise from lower left, Dan Kozlowski, Sheri Spinner, J.P. Gorham and Eunice Udelf plan the Infusion '99 exhibit at Kozlowski's home.

Michael Owen Baker/Daily News
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Copyright 1999, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Mar 26, 1999
Words:595
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