artists in Menlo Park

Krista Skehan’s life has been a string of successes. Growing up in Lindenwood, she attended St. Francis High School, where she was on the boy’s golf team [there was no girl’s team] and acquired what she describes a “good foundation of water color techniques.”

Off to Indiana University, she did an individualized major that in addition to fine art, included business, advertising and journalism. “That was a little ahead of the time,” she recalls. “But I realized artists are amazing but don’t know how to make their art a business. The education there gave me a solid foundation.”

Following graduation, she worked in advertising in Chicago on both the business and creative side, and along the way married a man she’d met at university. Eventually they made it back to the Bay Area and founded the Menlo Park-based branding company, Personify.

All good, but something was missing, which led her to working with “an amazing life coach” starting about four years ago. “It was a coach for me — and for my brain,” she says. “I wrote down a lot of things I loved, things I really wanted to do.”

High on Krista’s list was painting, which leads us to the present where her acrylic works, along with some prints, will be on display — and for sale — at CoffeeBar in downtown Menlo Park on November 29 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. The public is invited; there will be wine and live music.

To get to where she is now, Krista participated in Art in Action and held a couple of private shows in homes.

“For me painting is extremely rejuvenating,” she says, “The exploration of other worlds in my mind feeds my soul.

“This has been a process of reprioritizing my life. The first step was bringing the easel that was stuck in the garage into the house. That started it all!

Photo by Linda Hubbard (c) 2018; top painting West Coast Rivera (36×48); second painting Weekend Warrior (10×10)

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Badri Valian showcases her paintings and videos at Art Ventures Gallery in Menlo Park

“39, Silence” is the name of an exhibition of Menlo Park resident Badri Valian’s  Abstract expression artworks on display at Art Ventures Gallery at 888 Santa Cruz Avenue. She’ll be at the gallery tonight (Jan. 17) at 6:00 pm to talk about her paintings and videos. Badri, who we first profiled in 2016, was born […]

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Lisa Frick and Casey Raftery are linked by artistic endeavors, now on display at Gitane

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Asia Morgenthaler explores various artistic – and other – pursuits from her Menlo Park home

We admit it was the enormous downed tree trunk that caught our eye as we drove by Asia Morgenthaler’s home in Menlo Park. But we soon found there is a lot more to her story than just the tree. Asia is something of a Renaissance woman. Trained as a computer scientist, she found herself increasingly drawn to artistic pursuits while […]

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Dana Shields’ paintings on display at Willow Art show

Making art. Teaching art. Developing art curricula. These are all things Menlo Park resident Dana Shields is passionate about. “In my work, I strive to share my passion for joyous color, simple shapes, light and shadow, and bold compositions,” she said.  “As a teacher and a mother of a 5th grader, I have limited time […]

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Menlo Park-based artist Alice Weil’s current exhibit benefits Ronald McDonald House

“Chasing Light and Reflection,” a collection of oil and acrylic paintings inspired by Alice Weil‘s passion — rolling hills and​ majestic oaks — takes on additional meaning while being featured in December at the Portola Art Gallery in Menlo Park. The artist will donate 25% of her December sales to Ronald McDonald House via Blair Morgan Design Group […]

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Applied physics professor Hideo Mabuchi is also a ceramicist

Ceramics and applied physics. That’s not a marriage of disciplines that would pop up in most people’s minds. But the two pursuits are front and center in the life of Menlo Park resident Hideo Mabuchi. Hideo is a professor and department chair of the Department of Applied Physics at Stanford University. “My scientific research tends to […]

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Jesse Cool and Mitchell Johnson share art, food and admiration for each other

Think of them as bookending the stretch of the Alameda in Menlo Park between Sharon and Walsh roads. One a restaurateur feeding the body. The other a painter feeding the soul. Jesse Cool, owner of Flea Street Cafe, and artist Mitchell Johnson are joined together in what has been a mutually beneficial partnership for about five years with the […]

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Artist Susan Dunlap’s stone sculpture marks 30th anniversary at Bedwell Bayfront Park in Menlo Park

Artist Susan Dunlap, a Menlo Park resident since 1977, recalls how she felt 30 years ago when the final phase of her stone sculpture at Bedwell Bayfront Park was completed. “A 505-ton sculpture was what I needed to get Christo off my back!” she exclaims with a wry smile. “With that pressure gone, I was […]

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Creative upbringing propels Soni Bergman into designing jewelry from her Menlo Park studio

Jewelry designer Soni Bergman, who’s lived in Menlo Park for about 20 years, has art in her genes. Both her grandmother and mother are artists, the latter accomplished enough to have a piece accepted at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. “I pursued fine arts in college. Printmaking, to be exact,” she explained. “Later I came West with […]

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David Lehmann owns a vintage trailer, a 1958 Diablo

David Lehmann and wife Soni Bergman don’t actually live in their 1958 Diabl0 trailer nicknamed Rosarita — even though David describes it on his business card as “our little house on wheels.” “We’ve had it for three years and do take trips with it,” he says while showing his visitors the spiffily-decorated interior. “We took four this […]

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