Sculpture in the Garden is the annual art show and sale that marries stunning sculptural art with the natural sculptural beauty of the Garden. This year’s show will feature the works of over 20 renowned Northern California artists who work in a variety of mediums. This year’s show includes newcomer artists Jeff Key, Catherine Daley, Karina Kudymova and Judy Bolef Miller, who are exhibiting at the Garden for the first time, along with perennial favorites Joe Bologna, Cindy Landis, Clayton Thiel, Dustin Gimble, and Leslie Safarik, (“Welcome Woman” sculpture pictured above). Scroll down for a list of all participating artists and their bios.
The Sculpture Show opens to the general public on Saturday, June 26th and runs through August 29th. The Sculpture Show is FREE with your paid Garden admission during regular daytime business hours. Become a member and get Garden admission free all year.
All of the art pieces are available for purchase, so you can bring the magic home to your own garden. The nursery will also have a variety of smaller works of sculpture and art from local artists available for sale. Proceeds from the sale help support the Garden.
Special After Hours Evening Strolls
Garden Members and the general public are invited to enjoy the exhibit after hours during our special Evening Summer Strolls. View the sculpture exhibit in the Garden while also enjoying live music and a glass of beer/wine that will be available for purchase. Space is limited so get your tickets early.
There will be two strolls per designated evening with timed entry, limited capacity and advance ticket purchase required. Please note that RBG Guest Passes may not be used for the Evening Strolls which are special events.
Tickets for all Evening Strolls go on sale beginning Saturday, May 1st.
Ticket Prices: $20 for Members / $25 Non-Members<
Opening Night Members-Only Stroll*
Friday, June 25th:
Stroll 1: 5pm – 6:30pm
Stroll 2: 6:30pm – 8pm
*Note: Members will be required to present valid membership card at check-in. Current Members may purchase a maximum of two Non-Member Guest tickets in addition to their Member tickets for the Member’s Only Stroll event.
General Public Summer Strolls:
Public Stroll – Thursday, July 8th
Stroll 1: 5pm – 6:30pm
Stroll 2: 6:30pm – 8pm
Public Stroll – Thursday, August 12th
6:30pm – 8pm
Ticket Prices: $20 for Members / $25 Non-Members
Participating Artist Bios
I’ve been a practicing sculptor since 1975 and have art exhibited throughout the Bay Area. I have a Master of Architecture from University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI.
Artistic Experience includes:
Practicing Sculptor (1975-present)
Walnut Creek Art Commissioner (2010-present)
Bedford Gallery Advisory Board (2007-8)
Diablo Regional Arts Association (Past President)
SCULPTCAST Conversations about Sculpture (Host/interviewer)
Artistic Signs of Walnut Creek (Partner)
San Ramon Valley School District Student Art project Juror (2013-present)
Catherine Daley is an interdisciplinary artist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She works in sculpture, photography, and painting and often combines these disciplines. A photojournalist for 10 years in Sacramento, California, Catherine turned her creative eye to fine art photography, painting, and sculpture. After graduating from Sonoma State University in 2013, the University purchased her artwork in 2015 for permanent display on campus. While the impetus for her artwork is centered around the environment, Catherine also creates works that are deeply personal and/or relate to current events.
She is currently a featured artist in EXTRACTION: Art on the Edge of the Abyss, “a multimedia, multi-venue, cross-border art intervention which seeks to provoke societal change by exposing and interrogating the negative social and environmental consequences of industrialized natural resource extraction.” Unfolding exhibitions from four continents (North and South America, Europe, and Australia) will feature all media and be staged for the entire year of 2021.
Ms. Daley has been teaching painting, drawing and sculpture for the past five years at Sonoma Academy and dedicated herself to working with students as a volunteer employee in the arts program at Sonoma State University from 2013-16. She served on the former Windsor Arts Council as a board member and was instrumental in creating a unique venue for artists that combined the performing arts with the visual. She is now serving on the board for the Pacific Rim Sculptors Group as vice president.
Marguerite Elliot is a sculptor based in the Bay Area. She received her B.A. from Pitzer College, and taught at Otis College of Art and Design and the Los Angeles Woman’s Building. Her work has focused on feminist, environmental, social justice, and anti-nuclear issues.
She was awarded artist residencies in New York, Vermont, Nevada, Finland, and Denmark. Her public sculpture can be seen in sculpture parks in the United States and Europe. Recently, her early work during her time in Los Angeles was archived at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.
Elliot has exhibited her work in numerous solo and group shows in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York City, and is in numerous public and private collections including the New York Museum of Modern Art. Her work has been reviewed in major national newspapers and art publications including the Los Angeles Times, Village Voice, Art Week, and the Washington Post. She is a recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Among her recent publications is the book The Woman’s Building and Feminist Art Education, 1973-1991: A Pictorial Herstory, published in conjunction with the Getty Initiative and Otis College of Art and Design.
While not trained formally as an artist, Dustin considers himself to be a “natural born” artist with an intense drive to create. For many years he had experimented with concrete and all of its versatility. But in late 2015 the designer discovered a new love of ceramics which came from the process of taking a pot designed for concrete into commercial ceramic production. “The Point Pot,” as the geometric piece is called, was the bridge from one medium to the next. Once the Pandora’s Box of ceramics was opened there was no going back. Dustin’s ceramic work swings from the polar opposites of biological/organic forms to simple geometric lines. Like gardening, ceramic techniques present an inexhaustible array of choices and paths for exploration. His personal garden is part laboratory, botanical garden, filled with art, sculpture and experiments.
For 20 years, Beth Hartmann has been a sculptor and arts organizer. Having begun sculpting in fibrous materials, she soon moved to sturdier metal, cement, and plastic constructions and installations. She finds sculpture more connected to daily life than 2-D art.
Currently she is the lead artist in Sebastopol’s Sculpture Jam–a loose collective which creates and installs public sculpture. The group is self-funded, though under the umbrella of Sebastopol Center for the Arts, and often donates pieces for placement in Sonoma County locations. In the past, Hartmann has curated, chaired, installed, and juried shows in California and Oregon locations.
Her work is in the collections of the City of Sebastopol, Hisako Eto of Osaka and Kobe, Tran Turner of Oakland CA, Susan Scott of Ventura, CA, Julie Green of Novato, CA, and others. Some awards include fellow status at Jentel Artist Residency, as well as awards during exhibitions from Manuel Neri, Phil Linhares, and Rachel Osajima.
Luke Heimbigner makes cast metal sculptures using the forms of
forgotten and discarded items. He was born in 1982 in Bozeman,
Montana. His grandfather may have hoped to make an engineer of
young Luke by bringing him old lawnmower engines to take apart and
rebuild; instead, it was Luke’s artistic imagination that was sparked by
the functional beauty of those machines. In 2006 he graduated from theUniversity of Montana at Missoula with a BFA in sculpture and a minor in media arts. In 2007 he moved to Oakland California, having accepted a position as metal chaser at Artworks Foundry in Berkeley. Luke was also a captain on the foundry pour crew, helped with mold making and assisted with sculpture installation. At Artworks he met the late Steven De Staebler and worked closely with him as an assistant in the creation of the bronze sculpture for which De Staebler is internationally famous.
In 2015 Luke left the foundry to pursue his personal work and now
works at Scientific Art Studio in Richmond creating engaging artistic
creations. Alongside De Staebler, Heimbigner numbers Richard Serra
and Martin Puryear among the sculptors whose work he admires.
As a master craftsman, Roger Heitzman has a unique set of skills. He thinks like an engineer with an appreciation of the arts. Using nature as his inspiration, he blends these two fields of study, engineering and art, to meticulously design and craft hand made limited production kinetic wind sculptures. Roger is mostly self-taught and works in many materials. He says working in metal and wood are very similar and allow him an endless palette of design options. He has a restless mind and a never-ending need to create. If you ask him what he does, he’ll say, “I make stuff”. Published, award winning, grant worthy, highly acclaimed and recognized, stuff.
Roger lives and has his studio in Scotts Valley, CA. He is in business with his wife, Tina.
Xuan has worked on mosaics since 1999. Her mosaics aim to tell a story, to inspire, to delight the imagination, and to heal. The inspiration for her art is mostly derived from her life journey, as well as from her perception of the external world. Creating mosaics gives her freedom, inspiration, the motivation to create, and the feeling of satisfaction when she generates something beautiful. And that, in itself, nourishes her soul.
To capture the depth and complexity of such subjects, real or imagined, she delves into different artistic styles and techniques in her designs, such as impressionism, still life, and architecture. She has evolved from only using ceramics to incorporating a wide variety of materials into her mosaics to pull unlikely materials into unique harmony.
Since “Xuan” is pronounced “Swan” in English, the mosaics she creates carry the hand-made swan logo that represents her signature.
When I begin a sculpture, I never know how it will resolve. It is the first step in an adventure. I have a map, a map that is composed of previous sculptures – some complete others merely remnants. Sculpture is like language in that it can tell a story, yet it can be a language so personal that no one else can understand it (sometimes even the creator). That is what makes the adventure exciting – being able to show others what happened – by creating a language with an ever-larger vocabulary. My sculptures are not of real things but of the imagined, contraptions of the mind, machines that explain or perhaps they merely ask questions. I like to think of them as magical and dream like aspects of the things that are part of our daily lives. However my work is not limited to making interesting or even thought provoking sculptures. I am after all a sculptor; which means that I find power and excitement in the medium and application, in making the solid seem fluid, the heavy seem light. Sculpting for me is like magic, what you ultimately see is the magic of a journey that few choose to take. The closer you get to the surface the more the it fades away and the more its just about form. With all of its beautiful blemishes, scratches, dents and mistakes.
Jeff Key was born and raised in San Francisco, California. He received his B.A in Communications and Public Policy, and his B.F.A. from the University of California at Berkeley. He received his M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute.
In 2009 Jeff founded Media Enterprise Alliance/Youth Beat, a non-profit that provides low-income Oakland youth the opportunity to study digital media. Jeff served as Executive Director of MEA until 2016. He currently serves on the MEA/Youth Beat Advisory Board.
Jeff’s work as a sculptor, digital media artist, and writer has focused on theories of evolution with allegorical and metaphorical references to the past, present and future. His visual and written work adheres to an underlying structure of anthropological investigation focusing on sociology, political and physical science as well as psychology and theology. His work has also incorporated performance, installation, design for site-specific spaces, and most recently book art and the written word.
Jeff’s work can be found in the following collections: Lafayette Library and Learning Center, Lafayette, CA, Rene DiRosa Preserve, Napa, CA, University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh, WI, Netscape Communications, Mountain View, CA, Cadence Design Systems/3 Com Corp, San Jose, CA, Clorox Corporation, Oakland, CA, and First Federal Bank of San Rafael, CA.
Jeff’s work can be seen currently online at the Sculpturesite Gallery (www.sculpturesite.com), and as part of Sculpturesite’s sculptureWalk at Jack London Village in Glen Ellen, CA.
Steen Kjorlie is an American figurative artist born and raised in Topeka, Kansas. Steen began making sculpture in 2000 while working at a Kansas metal yard art shop. Originally using welded skeletal, found objects, assemblage technique his work evolved into complete form fabrication. Steen currently employs the lost wax casting method as well as fabrication to create his pieces.
He moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2006 and began work assembling and finishing bronze sculptures at Art Works Foundry. During his foundry career he has had the opportunity to work with 50 different accomplished sculptors. He currently resides in Richmond Ca.
BA in Biology from California State University Long Beach
Two years of independent studies at Humboldt State University.
I have been an artist most of my life, beginning with drawing and painting. Through the years I began sculpting with wood, making large carved monoliths with images from biology, from fossils to plant/animal and images of particle physics. Eventually my sculptures were too large for indoor viewing so I looked for another medium that would allow me to place them outdoors. From years of construction work with concrete I realized I could make carved wood forms with my images and pour concrete into them resulting in sculpted concrete monoliths that would withstand the weather. I have now transitioned into monoliths of concrete tile and enamel tile. Most of my work revolves around the interconnectedness of everything from tiny atoms to the stars above. All matter is reduced to an electro magnetic wave.
H.S.U. Natural History Museum, Arcata CA
Lowe’s Building Center, Sunnyvale, CA
McWane Science Museum, Birmingham, AL
Kolb Park, Dublin, CA
National Weather Service, Woodley Island, CA
Clark Plaza, Old Town, Eureka, CA
North Jetty, Eureka, CA
Trinidad Elementary School, Trinidad, CA
Jacobs Elementary School, Bayside, CA
Side of Highway 101 near Cloverdale CA.
City of Eureka, Truesdale Point and Elk River facilities
The Califonia Parks and Recreation, Award of Excellence. First Place for “Dust in the Universe,” Installed at Kolb Park, Dublin, CA 2000
The City of Arcata Award of Excellence for, “Nautilus,” Installed at the Humboldt State University Natural History Museum, Arcata, CA 2001
Flavia Krasilchik was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, 1952. Architect and Planner by profession , she was always involved with art in general, acrylic and oil painting, water coloring and photography.
Moved from Brazil to California in 2003 and in 2005 joined the Potters Studio in Berkeley. Today, most of the creations are in clay although painting is very present.
Most of the sculptures have a whimsical touch, an influence from the Brazilian background and a sense of humor and optimism towards life. Fifa lives in front of a bird sanctuary which plays a deep sense of inspiration on her work.
Most of the ceramic sculptures and work are fired at medium temperature which results into bright colors and sometimes fired at high temperature which brings out earthy colors.
Karina Kudymova was born in Moscow, Russia in 1967. After recieving her MFA degree from the Stroganov School of Art and Industry she successfully worked in both traditional and experimental media. Mrs. Kudymova participated in ceramics and painting exhibitions, worked as a book illustrator, and created a web site for children tinytram.com. She lives and works in San Jose, California.
Learning to ‘let go’ of loved ones is a lifelong challenge full of inspiration! My brother Craig, who passed away from cancer at the young age of 38, had an obsession with dolphins. In his home, he had anything and everything ever created that depicted dolphins of all shapes and sizes.
Shortly after this tragic loss and in his honor, his girlfriend had a pool installed that was embellished with a blue border tile each with faint little jumping dolphins. At first glance of this pool I knew instantly what my creative side wanted to express.
It was that exact moment, the journey began! A five foot free standing dolphin was created.
It may not have always been my thoughts to be a mosaic artist, but after my first dolphin and much encouragement from friends that have stood with me through all of life’s changes I embraced the challenge to continue to create.
As an artist, after one project was completed, my mind never stopped thinking of what the next creation could be – of course, bigger, better and more. Why not enormous running horses….wild and free! From that came the rearing horses… I completely lost my mind…and found my own expanded artistic ability in the process!
Some lessons you literally stumble over in the process of learning them. Serendipity definitely describes how the sun happens to hit the sculptures at different times. It sparkles and dances through the hours until it slips into the final moments of sunset- my personal favorite time of day.
I hope that you will find the same playful, fun-loving spirit that embodied my big brother’s personality in each of my custom crafted mosaics made with loving memories. Success for me is that you enjoy them as much as I did in creating them!
Diana Markessinis is a California based sculptor known for creating hybrid forms of the natural and the architectural. Primarily manipulating metal to mimic chosen attributes of plants and trees, Markessinis explores the human experience on the natural world and visa versa. In 2007 she received her Masters of Fine Art in sculpture from California State University, Fullerton, CA and her undergraduate degree in sculpture from West Virginia University (2003), attending special workshops at the Pont-Aven School of Contemporary Art, France and the Haystack Mountain School of Craft in Deer Isle, in Maine. Currently living and working in the Bay Area.
My narratives focus on everyday life, familiar objects, and situations
and experiences. I strive to create a narrative by combining texture, form, and movement.
As a multimedia artist, I have explored many techniques and media, my abstract paintings are highly textured and sometimes include collage and assemblage elements.
My work has appeared in several National Art Magazines.
In 2020 I won a National Contest to show my work at the Art Expo in New York.
When exploring something in a different way I seem never to run out of ideas and different forms to explore. My series have a widely different feel to them, but these differences are what drives my work. I hope I never tire of opening a new door.
I’ve been building things my whole life. Always encouraged to repair rather than replace, I became mechanically inclined at a young age. Born with an allergy to text and a youth filled with the great outdoors, I have always gravitated towards shape, sound and movement.
I was first drawn to metal by my grandfather, the pipe-fitter. Intrigued by his metal finesse, and surrounded by his many projects, I was lured in. Witnessing the magic of molten metal dancing around him and staring at its fire, something was indelibly burnt into me.
Following in his footsteps, I apprenticed in a large pipe fabrication shop and spent years as a pipe-fitter. The ease with which large pieces of metal could be formed into limitless objects fascinated me, and metal working soon became a passion. These years of metal fabrication gave me a firm grasp of steel. I unfortunately found the conventional uses littered with boundaries.
Urged to apply my metalworking skills to art, I produced my first sculpture. This new found form of expression was exhilarating. I had stumbled onto the creative freedom that I was searching for. Having now spent the better part of my life working with steel, I am incurably hooked. Its strength and versatility afford me the liberty to take a piece in almost any direction.
My art is about life. My sculptures are a combination of the past and present. I have a deep affinity toward the materials I work with, a sense of emotion for what the material was originally used for and now what it will become in my hands. These thoughts direct me on my path as I work. My sculptures emerge with patterns. I take one piece of steel, add to it, delete from it, add to it. I am constantly discovering. When a sculpture contains all of my creative energies, I am done. My technique is brute force, decide-at-the-moment. The interesting shapes and textures of metal; the patterns and grains; all entice me. I am fascinated with form. My aspiration is to make sculpture that is completely unique, to resist conformity and mass production. My art is as individual as I am.
Born in Romania, raised in Israel, and living in the San Francisco bay area since 2007, I consider myself a true woman of the world. It is these experiences that have influenced and inspired me in my art.
I have been working with clay as a medium for my art during the past 11 years, focusing primarily on hand-building techniques typical to various cultures and geographical areas. My professional background as a social anthropology researcher, along with my lifelong passion for traveling, my fascination with ancient cultures and traditions, ethnic tribal art, and the rich Jewish heritage to which I belong, all manifest themselves in my work. Additionally, I view nature as my main muse—I often collect leaves, rocks, and tree barks, and take photographs of boulders, tree trunks, and flowers as I walk my dog, to later mimic in my pottery. These passions, interests, and life experiences of mine, all reflect in my work and can be seen in my usage of various different color palates and distinct textures.
I have been a member of OVCAG (Orchard Valley Ceramic Art Guild) since 2009, and a member of Gallery 9 in Los Altos since 2015. My work has been displayed and sold in various venues throughout the bay area in places such as Filoli Gardens, Gallery 9, the Ruth Bancroft Garden and Nursery, Triton Museum of the Arts (museum store), the Pacific Art League, the Palo Alto JCC, and more.
I currently live in Palo Alto with my husband of 21 years, my three wonderful children, and our sweet dog!
We are Ernest and Lois Rich,
our path has led us from rural
North Carolina where we blacksmithed and woodworked, to Greensboro, NC. There we helped found Lyndon Street Artworks and co-owned and operated the Artworks Collective Gallery. In 2009 we completed our first project in The Bay Area. Our studio is in Richmond, California where we specialize in creating one of a kind functional art pieces and sculptures.
I am an artist and craftswoman. I strongly embrace an aesthetic that embodies beauty, joyfulness and superior craftsmanship. I love working with my hands and making my artwork unique. I feel art should be beautiful, imaginative and engaging. It’s my goal to create work that energizes the space it inhabits. I especially enjoy making large-scale work for exterior spaces and gardens.
About my work
My sculptures are Glazed Low Fire Ceramics. All of my work is hand built using a special clay body that I have formulated especially for me by my supplier. The work is built in sections, glazed and detailed and fired in the kilns in my studio. Building, Firing, Glazing and Detailing. It all starts with the clay…
Born in St Charles, Missouri in 1956, Clayton Thiel received his BA in sculpture from Maryville University in 1979, then came to California to study with Peter Voulkos and Joan Brown at UC Berkeley. At San Jose State he studied with David Middlebrook and Stan Welsh receiving an MFA in 1985 (summa cum laude). He has been a full-time professor of Sculpture (clay, stone, and bronze) and Teacher of Art History, and Design at Chabot College in Hayward, CA since 1990. Thiel’s work has been shown widely in exhibits and galleries across the country, and he has received numerous commissions from private collectors.
Clayton Thiel has been passionately making sculptures for over 40 years. He came to the San Francisco Bay area to study with renowned sculptors like Peter Voulkos and Manuel Neri. While sculpting, Clayton has also been teaching and lecturing for the last 30+ years at colleges and other institutions.
Internationally respected Artist Clayton Thiel reports: “My work is often categorized as surrealism/visionary – calling on the unconscious dream world and bringing it into play through each piece of work. What I admire about surrealist artists of the 20th century is that they took the most improbable combinations of dreams, memories and reflections, and made them appear possible.” Making beautiful art is my passion and my life work – I am so blessed to pass this on to my students.
Ceramic Sculptor Emil Yanos has been working with clay since 1993. Through experimentation, he has found that working with clay provides an excellent opportunity to explore color and texture. Emil’s goal is to communicate meaning, extending beyond the visual form to encourage an emotional response.
Note: All Sculptures are available for purchase at the Garden beginning on June 25th. Purchased sculptures are required to remain on display in the Garden throughout the duration of the show. Sculpture and art items purchased online must be picked up at the Garden or in some cases, private delivery and installation arrangements may be arranged with the artist. Shipping not available.
Banner photo by Alice Kitajima