Oceana Madrone and Kurt Hellmich Featured Artists for February 2020
Oceana Madrone’s fabric and bead work focuses on the beauty and magic of life in all of its complexity. Her work directly and honestly reflects the emotional and meaningful aspects of life with an emphasis on healing through the beauty and joy of art. She has done extensive work using quilts to help women and children heal their experience of violence and pain in their lives. She has helped survivors create over one hundred healing quilts. Her new display includes a soft sculpture, several beaded necklaces and a pair of wall quilts.
Her current themes for her line of fabric collage postcards are Mardi Gras and hearts just in time for Valentine’s Day.
Madrone has been working with beads since childhood.
“My art is my effort to create order out of chaos and to transform pain and survival into strength and beauty,” she said. “Art doesn’t make the hard things in life go away. It does help me to find joy and continue on my path of healing and discovery. I love the color, textures, and sparkle of fabric and beads. I create images of beauty and magic. Life is a magical gift.”
Kurt Hellmich, a “backyard artist” as he calls himself, grew up in the San Fernando Valley where his father was a cartoonist for Walt Disney when they still drew their animations by hand. It was natural for him to follow his father’s pattern of making a living through art, but instead of being called to drawing he followed his love for working in wood.
Hellmich — who moved to Humboldt County in 1979 — enjoys adapting recycled woods from deconstructed barns and driftwood. His work includes cribbage boards and hanging birdfeeders made with driftwood shapes. In his laminated wood cutting boards, he insets delightful handle images such as wooden kitchen knives, fish or guitars.