Monday, November 4, 2013

International Quilt Festival 2013

I hope you were able to attend the International Quilt Festival in Houston this year.  TAODA was well represented in the doll exhibits.  First, let me say how proud we are of MARLENE SLOBIN for her gypsy challenge piece “The Performers” which won Best of Show!  Congratulations Marlene! 
"The Performers"

This is the fourth time a TAODA artist has won Best of Show in the Gypsy Challenge (past TAODA winners were Neva Waldt, Janet Bodin, and Karin Otto-Burfict).  Angela Jarecki and JoAnn Luco also had dolls in the Gypsy Challenge this year.

"Late for the Ball" 

This has really been Marlene’s year.  She won the Soft Dolls and Animals “You Did What with that Pattern?” contest with this piece:

“In Celebration of the Doll” is the invitational portion of the doll exhibit. Angela Jarecki, Amy Nelson, Janet Bodin, Joyce Patterson, Marlene Slobin and Marsha Krohn all had dolls in this exhibit.

"The Tea Merchant's Wife"

"Sing in the Sun"

"Sim Shalom"
("Let There Be Peace")
"Fabric Sale Today Only"


"Sitting Pretty"

TAODA had its own portion of the exhibit with “Block Party”, dolls incorporating a quilt block in their design.
"Crazy Log Cabins"

"Nine Patch"

"Quilting Queen"
"Sunbonnet Sue"

"Other Voices"

"Angie Loves a Good Party"

"Roman's Quilt"

"Picking Up the Pieces"

"Crazy Like a Fox"

"Story Time"

Last but not least, the Material Girls of Houston doll club had a portion of the exhibit.  Several TAODA members are also members of this club.  Linda Butler, Marlene Slobin and JoAnn Luco had dolls in this portion.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Persons of Interest Reception

Thanks to everyone who came to our reception at Hanson Galleries last night!  We had a nice turn out, despite the rush hour traffic. 
Congratulations to our award winners!  First place went to Karin Otto-Burfict for "Three Wishes".  

Second place went to Theresa May for "Ink Master".  

Third place went to Anne Myatt for "Ebony Madonna".  

Three honorable mentions were awarded:  Tere Perry for "Caught in the Act", 

Neva Waldt for "Fowl Play", 

and Marsha Krohn for "Patience Grows Weary Waiting for Mr. Right".

The show is beautiful.  Thank you all for your outstanding work.  The gallery owners and staff are very pleased and say this show is even better than last year's.  If you weren't able to come to the reception, be sure to go by the gallery after our meeting on Saturday and see the show.  You will be proud!


Friday, September 27, 2013

Thursday, September 5, 2013

We are excited to announce our upcoming juried show and sale at Hanson Galleries in Houston!  The dates are October 3 - November 3, 2013.  Much more information to come, but here is an exciting "pre-show" opportunity:

Saturday, August 10, 2013

All Dolls Are Art Conference Report

ADAA 2013 (All Dolls Are Art) was a success thanks to Amy Nelson and her staff.
The classes were filled with talk, laughter, and happy moments. Everyone had loads of fun finishing their project and enjoyed the three day event.  Congratulations to Karin Otto-Burfict for the sale of her wonderful piece, "Honey."

This year’s banquet speaker was Mayra René. She introduced her new book, "El Arte De La Muneca En Tela", "The Art of the Cloth Doll." She had a full presentation on screen as well as stories and history of some of the dolls she brought with her to share. This book takes us into the world of cloth doll making, with the history of the first dolls from the pre-hispanic era to the present; from evolution to transformation. Mayra documents the historical origin of the doll as a true art form. She shares the love, joy, and life experiences with our dolls. She writes about the contributions the Spaniards made in cloth doll making in Mexico's culture. The two and a half years of research paid off, for it was hard to put the book down. Congratulations to Neva Waldt for her beautiful piece featured in Mayra's book. Some of my pieces are featured along with life stories of how the important women in my life influenced me in creating the cloth doll.
 She has a version in English that will come out on October 7th in e-book form and hopefully next year the English hard cover book will be available.
TAODA Artist Adriana Esqueda with author Mayra Rene

More pictures taken at ADAA can be found on

Adriana Esqueda

Monday, August 5, 2013

NIADA Conference, 2013

TAODA members Janet Bodin, Theresa May, and newly inducted NIADA artist Neva Waldt spent the last week in June at the NIADA DollMaking School and 50th Anniversary Conference in Corte Madera, California. The weather in beautiful Marin County started off cool and rainy but, apparently to make us Texans feel more at home, abruptly switched to an uncharacteristic and unexpected heat wave. The company of doll artists from all over the world and the excitement over Neva's impending membership more than made up for the discomfort, though.

Janet took Shelley Thornton's 3-day cloth doll class, Theresa took Connie Smith's 2-day stone clay animals class, and both Theresa and Neva were in Tanya Marriott's stop motion animation armature class. We all learned, despite issues with class size, lack of air conditioning, and chatty class members.  Gallery night was impressive, and over the following days the programs were really inspirational and fun (especially the session on animation by in-coming NIADA President Tanya Marriott and her husband Garry Buckley).

The vote on new members merely confirmed what those of us in TAODA already know--Neva Waldt is a world-class artist--and we were thrilled, if not one bit surprised, that she joined an international group of five other artists in the NIADA Class of 2013. To top it off, all three of the pieces she took to show were sold to collectors before noon on sale day.

Next year's meeting is in Orlando, Florida. The DollMaking School is from August 11-13, and the conference is August 14-17. 

Theresa May 

Friday, August 2, 2013

Artist Doll & Teddy Bear Convention, May 2013

Attending this year’s “Artist Doll & Teddy Bear Convention,” in Philadelphia, was an awesome experience for the senses. The experience, as a whole, was great. Our promoters Susan and Terri Quinlan put on an art show that surpasses any out there. We begin on Thursday with a day of classes we sign up for in advance. On Friday we can attend the Artists Marketplace and book signing where artists set up tables with wares they sell at bargain prices and sign their books. The seminars, given by artists were great. These were not only informative but so much fun. The artists’ display of one of a kind art pieces for judging were out of this world. The pieces exhibited this year surpassed the creativity of last year and made judging very difficult. This year we also participated in a special exhibit and sale of doll artists making a teddy bear and teddy bear artists making a doll. It was lots of fun and lots of pieces went to new homes. The early Friday show and sale and the Saturday show and sale were fun days of laughter and meeting new people. In my opinion, this year we had more conventioneers and new people attending than ever before.  Lots of smiles, laughter, and picture taking surrounded us all day.

I recommend this show to everyone interested in showing and selling their art pieces and to those who just want to experience three days enjoying the atmosphere of art and fun.

If anyone has any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me directly at

Adriana Esqueda

Monday, May 13, 2013

Statement from Elisabeth Lanier, Art Juror

At our meeting on Saturday, May 11, MARSHA KROHN read a portion of a statement from juror Elisabeth Lanier that had been sent to the Galveston Art League. Many of the members who attended the meeting  found it encouraging and insightful. Marsha asked Elisabeth for permission to reprint part of the statement here. She graciously agreed that we can share it on our blog. Here it is:

When Steve and I look at art, we’re looking for the three things that were outlined in the Call for Entries:

First, technique. Does the artist have a command of his medium? Does she know how to apply paint, turn a vessel, carve, capture light, understand the materials? Does he understand color and how to use it to achieve his ends? Has she mastered her medium sufficiently well to be able to break the rules? Does he know when to break the rules – and when not to?

Next, observation. Is the artist seeing something unique? Is he able to translate that vision to his medium? Is she looking past the obvious, trying to understand the thing more fully?

And, lastly, statement or voice. By applying his technique and his sense of observation, is the artist able to make a statement with his work? Does she bring some of her own sense of herself – her history, her philosophy, her energy – to her work? Is there something of the infinite in his work? Something that moves the work past mere description?

Because, to us, the real job of art is to awaken, inform, inflame, embolden, create a stir, arouse passion, elicit a memory, move to action, move to tears, remind us of our humanity, create a response.

To look at art is to immerse oneself in the vision that the artist had in creating the piece. You may not completely understand it – but, after all, you can look at and enjoy a golf tournament or a football game without fully understanding the complexities of strategy – but it should stir you, it should create a response.

Art – real art – moves past mere illustration into something of the infinite. 

Illustration, of course, has its place in our world. Without it, our stories would be less dramatic, our instructions, less comprehensible, our greeting cards, less engaging, our advertisements, less tempting, our posters, less striking. As its name implies, illustrations illustrate i.e., provide (a book, newspaper, etc.) with pictures, explain or make (something) clear by using examples, charts, pictures, etc.

But, it is art that moves us: it is art – visual, performing, musical, literature, poetry – that is the very sould of our civilization.

Elisabeth Lanier, Design Works