The roof in progress on the studio floor. The transparency of the fabric will allow us to see the projects surroundings through a veil of gold.

The table top painting in-progress of cultivated and native plants of Visalia.

A couple more examples of the portraits that will be a part of the project during the Taste the Arts festival from the 9th-11th of September, Downtown Visalia.


The steel skeleton fits on Duane’s pick up. I followed him in my hatch back all the way the North Dakota so I could start teaching. This way, we can continue working on the project together there. Lots of curious onlookers for this three day drive North.

In Reno our cargo was presumed to be a part of Burning Man as participants were also stopped there on their exodus. In Montana we liked how another white truck was carrying organic cargo of similar appearance.

Join us in gold leafing the project centerpiece September 9th-11th at Garden Street Plaza, downtown Visalia

We are excited about the participatory component of the project. Caroline Koontzs MJ Eastes- with Arts Visalia and the consortium has been working hard with growers to find a variety of regional fruits and vegetables to be gifted to the community project’s centerpiece. We have constructed a tiered platform to support the produce which will be gold leafed on site by festival visitors and ourselves. Not to worry! The process isn’t too challenging, but may not be ideal for children. That is o.k. though, because we need their young talent as well to make the project a success. Children of Visalia and surrounding areas are invited to draw additional portraits, or decorate citrus. We envision the end result to be an eye full of glittering delight.

Arts profs prepare installation for California farm community


Check out the project on The California Council for the Humanities Facebook page as well as other community centered projects:

A couple of recent portraits. I have decided to increase the number of total portraits to accommodate all of the participants that I can. Additional photos continue to trickle in since my trip to Visalia, California. There may be close to 70 when I am done.

Getting a sense of how these portraits might come together.

Prototype for lining the interior with fruit. We hope the people of Visalia will decorate fruit to add to the project.

Duane is now building the ‘table’. The table top will consist of a large painting – horizon on each side where native California plants and plants produced by agriculture share landscape. I found this to really be the truth while visiting Visalia – There seems to be an appreciation for the native and cultivated plant.

The morning sun was still rising when I spotted these blooming nightshades on the trail near the vineyard. On the right is the early grape plant breaking through the soil.