PSA: What's New in December
PSA: What's New in December
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           December Newsletter 2021
Robert Crook
About the Piece
The three full-figure jugs depicted show the Tyrolean legend of Krampus, the Christmas demon that follows St. Nicholas to carry off naughty children.
About Robert Crook
Persistence is a key to success. Consider PSA Executive Vice President Robert Crook. According to PSA lore, Robert was rejected four times by PSA juries before being accepted on his fifth attempt. In an artists’ society that was created by and for fine artists, Robert is one of the few outsider artists to become a member. According to Slotin Folk Art Auction house in Georgia, which has sold Robert’s work in years past, Robert is the only artist on the West Coast to be continuously creating face jugs. 

Robert sees his face jugs as being a link in the creation of spiritual objects that have their beginnings in prehistory. As Robert explains, different peoples in Africa, Europe, and Early America created bottles and jugs with unusual faces for spiritual purposes. Such bottles and jugs were used by African slaves as markers for graves and in Africa-based religions as a means to conjure and contain mystical power. Europeans similarly used figural bottles (often referred to as Bellarmine jugs) filled with various objects as protection against witchcraft. 

But in the 20th century they also had a mundane purpose. Face jugs were used in the South to keep children from drinking moonshine. The ugly faces were a way of telling a child that the alcoholic contents were yuck! Robert’s grandfather used to keep his whiskey in such jugs, high upon a shelf, so as to keep Robert and his cousins from sneaking a taste.   

Musings and Meanderings
Current contemplation with the president

Hello, Fellow Artists!

Art, in itself, is an attempt to bring order out of chaos.
                                               S. Sondheim

December is here, can you believe it? So often it whooshes by in a haze for most of us. I find that this time of year I also long for introspection and must actively make the time to spend with my quiet thoughts as the new year rushes ever nearer. I’m hopeful that you are able to find a bit of that quiet time as well to bring some order to the daily chaos. Whether it comes through some meditative art making, slowing down to view an art exhibit, or attending one of PSA’s monthly art salons, please gift yourself an opportunity for luxurious stillness.

This past month I made the time to head to Sedona for a three-day painting workshop and was able to make it to the Obama and Black Portraits exhibit at LACMA with a friend. It was such a beautiful reminder of how often I don’t slow down and how wonderful it is when I do. Do you find this to ever be true for you as well? If so, I hope that you will find a pocket of time for yourself and if not, then I would like to learn from you!

We won’t be having a monthly member meeting this month, but I believe that there will be a holiday gathering and I hope to see you there.

Thank you to those who donated to “Art Supplies for Kids!" It is such a powerful gift to give and I’m sure many amazing things will come from the supplies.

Wishing you and yours the happiest and healthiest of seasons!

Shaney Watters
PSA President 
"Art Supplies for Kids"
2021 Holiday Campaign
Here’s the latest on the Art Supplies campaign.

Thanks to the generosity of PSA members and the public, over $900 has been raised to purchase much-needed art supplies for the children under the care of Homes of Hope Foster Care/Adoption Agency in West Covina this holiday season. We want to thank each individual that gave a donation.  

All of this money will go toward purchasing sketch books, watercolor painting kits, pads, colored pencils, pastels, oil paints, brushes, coloring books, crayons and so many other art supplies for children from toddlers to teenagers.

In addition, several cartons of art supplies from PSA members’ studios will be delivered.

We thank everyone for making a child’s holiday season that much better.

Lawrence D. Rodgers
Alice Dworkin
Art Supplies for Kids 
Pasadena Society of Artists

Off the Wall
Here’s the latest from the Exhibition Committee.

The 96th Annual Juried Exhibition presented at Whites Fine Art Gallery in Montrose closed Saturday, November 13. Around 200 visitors (150 at the reception) during the 30-day exhibition enjoyed viewing the 70 artworks presented by 53 artists, as selected by Dr. Mika Cho. Six artists sold their artwork. They are: Darien Donner, Mims Ellis, Claire Menegatti, Martin Ehrlich, Robert Michael Sullivan and David Sikes. The 96th Annual Juried Exhibition can be viewed online at  Also, printed catalogs are still available for purchase at $20.00 per copy. 

A reminder, all PSA online exhibitions can be viewed at  Just search “Pasadena Society of Artists" 

2021 has been a very busy year with four online exhibitions and the 96th Annual, which was online and in-person at Whites Fine Art Gallery. It is important to acknowledge and thank all of the PSA members who participated in these exhibitions. Also it is necessary to thank the hard-working online exhibition/catalog production team. They are Debbi Swanson Patrick, Director of Communications; Karen Hochman Brown, Art Director for the catalog covers, digital announcements and postcards; Alison Davies, Editor and Proofreader for catalog content; and Leah Knecht for preparing the Smartsheet exhibition entry forms for each exhibition.  

Now with the holiday season approaching, it's time for the Exhibition Committee to take a short vacation.  

Always looking ahead, the 2022 exhibition schedule should be announced during January 2022. Exhibitions will include the 97th Annual Juried Exhibition at the Betsy Lueke Creative Arts Center Gallery in Burbank for the month of May. Look for the take-in to be mid to late March 2022.  Other exhibitions on the schedule include the New Members Showcase presenting all of the new members juried in during 2021; an Artist’s Choice Exhibition at Whites Fine Art Gallery during late summer, early fall; a potential juried exhibition at the Creative Arts Group art gallery in Sierra Madre; and a media-specific exhibition, the media and venue to be decided. All of these exhibitions will be online and several will have gallery exhibitions as well. Printed catalogs will be produced for all of the exhibitions.

Again the committee thanks all participating artists and volunteers for making PSA exhibitions possible.

Happy holidays from the Exhibition Committee!

Larry, Art and Tom  
Small Works Holiday Sale
We regret that the Small Works Holiday Sale has been cancelled because we didn't have enough participating artists.  We are hopeful that we can host this type of event again in the spring and/or autumn of 2022.  

Wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.
Kathleen and Rhonda

Dear fellow artists, 

Thank you to all who attended the Artists' Salon yesterday, and to those who couldn’t make it, you were missed, but there are plenty of upcoming salons! We had 12 attendees.

We talked about our successes relating to art, and everyone had a different definition and interesting stories to tell.

Sean Yang brought up that he’s an instructor, which we thought was so worthwhile.

I wanted to add that when I taught art to kids, I learned so much from them as well, and I’ll never forget an incident where a kid finished his oil painting, which I congratulated him on, and asked what he wanted to do next. He said, "Why can’t I just enjoy this success for a while before moving on?" Stopped me in my tracks. Absolutely, we should acknowledge and celebrate our successes, and those of our friends. We make things that didn’t exist before, and not everyone has that opportunity.

Other definitions were defining and reaching your goals, making art that touches others, art that enlightens, being recognized, and more.

Thank you all for sharing, bringing goodies, and your art!

“Lore, Thank you for capturing the moments of our successes!! We the people are greater than who we were yesterday. That’s because we have grown out from the past. “We are here to lift each other up.” That was a meaningful lesson of the night. Thank you all!"
                                                  —Sean Yang

Leah Knecht

Membership Dues

If you have already paid for this year, thank you!!
Membership dues for January 1 - December 31, 2021 are $75.00.

You can pay online on the "Members Only" page of the PSA website, OR you can send a check, payable to PSA, and mail it to:  P.O. Box 90074, Pasadena, CA  91109.

Remember that you must be current with your dues in order to participate in exhibitions. If you are experiencing financial hardship, please contact Kathleen. We have a confidential scholarship program, and we can help!
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Pasadena Society of Artists
P.O. Box 90074 | Pasadena, CA | 91109 US