artists

Post image for “Kind of Shy” is theme of oil paintings on display at Portola Art Gallery in November

During the month of November, the Portola Art Gallery presents “Kind of Shy,” expressive oil paintings by award-winning artist Marsha Heimbecker of San Mateo. Marsha’s paintings are known for their bold brushwork and color, resulting in a unique vitality.

This latest collection of work, inspired by the orphaned elephants of Tsavo, hopes to capture the essence of these magnificent creatures.

Originally a bio-engineer with degrees from UC Berkeley and MIT, Marsha underwent a heart transplant in 2001. She had always shown an aptitude for art in addition to science, and after her surgery, she found art to be “very helpful in the healing process.”

She credits many years of classical training in life drawing, portraiture, and anatomy for her distinctive style. Using a harmonious palette of colors, she enjoys stretching her imagination to express the beauty, color, and energy in what she sees.

In 2009, Marsha won First Place, the Los Gatan Award, at the Los Gatos Art Association Open. She also has shown her work in Paint Allied Arts events, the Sanchez Art Center, Horizon Art Gallery, Triton Museum, and a one-woman show at Thomas Moser.

Her paintings can be found in private collections around the country, as well as online.

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M-A grad Alan Masaoka is respected glass artist with many private and public installations

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Given his robost portfolio of private and public glass art, Menlo-Atherton High School alum Alan Masaoka surprised us: He didn’t go to art school nor even study art at either M-A nor the College of San Mateo. During a recent visit to his Carmel Valley studio, he explained: “I’ve always been interested in art and was […]

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Seventh grader Jack Barry creates new Super Hero – Masked Man

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There’s a new Super Hero named Masked Man in town, created right here in Menlo Park by Sacred Heart School seventh grader Jack Barry. Masked Man was birthed on a Saturday, Jack recalls, “when I didn’t have much else to do. So I sat down and started drawing and out of it came my own Super Hero.” […]

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Esther Baran: Artist returns to her roots with opening of gallery at Allied Arts

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“Of all the places to have a gallery, this is just perfect,” says artist Esther Baran, sitting in the well-lit space tucked in a back corner near the Old Wood Barn of the Allied Arts Guild. It’s also a return to her local roots. Esther grew up in Menlo Park, attending Encinal, and graduating from Menlo-Atherton […]

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Jerry Peters: From fire fighting to painting

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Jerry Peters spent 30 years as a firefighter, the last 10 as a Battalion Chief for the Menlo Park Fire Protection District. His career inspired his early artistic pursuits, which featured fire engines, fire helmets and fire scenes. “I’d never held a paint brush or anything else artistically speaking before I retired,” he said. “I […]

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Joan McLoughlin: Gallerist makes a choice to give back

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From emergency room nurse to gallery owner may seem an unlikely journey. But a middle stint with a string of successful medical device startups and then surviving cancer helps fill in the blanks. Last October, Menlo Park resident Joan McLouglin fulfilled a long-time dream and opened up The McLouglin Gallery in San Francisco. “I thought, […]

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Mitchell Johnson: Making sense of the world through painting

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The fence sprung up unexpectedly, a splash of color along a stretch of the Alameda in Menlo Park, a piece of living art. A word would appear and then, as suddenly, disappear. Passersby embraced it, as did the neighborhood (save one disgruntled soul). But few knew that it was the work of artist Mitchell Johnson, […]

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