Champagne Sparkle 2018 by Cybele Gontar

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This Saturday, December 1 is Julia Street’s second annual Champagne Sparkle. On this lovely First Saturday, galleries welcome the holiday season with evening exhibition openings, champagne tastings, and lights lining the street. It is a night that truly glistens, and we hope to see you there!

The event is free and open to the public and will take place Saturday, December 1st from 6-9 pm on Julia Street.

Dale Chihuly Sculpture at the New Orleans Botanical Garden by Cybele Gontar

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Friday, November 2, The Rose Crystal Tower, a sculpture by world renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly, was unveiled at the New Orleans Botanical Garden. At 22 feet tall, this soaring bright pink sculpture welcomes City Park visitors as they enter the garden. David Kerstein, president of the Helis Foundation, which is underwriting the sculpture in the park, says "Everything we do, in particular with our programs with the various museums, is to ensure there is an educational component to it. Young people from public and charter schools will have the opportunity to see this art without charge, and hopefully it will inspire them.” We are thrilled to have this beautiful piece of public art in our city, and cannot wait to go see it!

Decorative Arts Trust in New Orleans by Cybele Gontar

This past weekend, the Decorative Arts Trust held a fall symposium in New Orleans to introduce its members to the rich history of the city in timing with the tricentennial. Throughout their stay, members were led on lovely historic tours exploring the French Quarter, Garden District, and Creole plantations with New Orleans historians. Additionally, several art historians from New Orleans gave talks throughout the weekend. Cybèle Gontar, Degas Gallery owner/director, gave a talk Sunday morning on a show she recently curated at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, Salazar: Portraits of Influence in Spanish New Orleans, 1785-1802.

O What a Night! at the Ogden Museum with Marcia Holmes by Cybele Gontar

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We are excited to attend O What a Night! a gala dinner and auction at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art with one of our artists, Marcia Holmes tomorrow night! Marcia’s painting Heart to Heart is featured in the Louisiana Contemporary show and will be auctioned along with the work of many other local artists at this event. O What a Night! is a fantastic event here in New Orleans, celebrating southern art, culture, and cuisine. This glamorous night not only supports the many talented artists of New Orleans, but also the mission of the Ogden: “to broaden the knowledge, understanding, interpretation and appreciation of the visual arts and culture of the American South.”

Marcia’s painting Heart to Heart, 2017 is 31 x 31 in. framed, pastel on paper. You can see more details about the piece and the auction here.

Open Studios at the Joan Mitchell Center by Cybele Gontar

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This morning, the residents at the Joan Mitchell Center opened up their studios to the public for the second Community Coffee event of the season.

The Joan Mitchell Center is an artist residency center here in New Orleans with a mission to “support local, national, and international contemporary visual artists…{by} offering both time and space for artists to create work in a contemplative environment.” Each month they host an event that is open to the public.

After meeting the residents last month, we were so excited to come back to see what they have been working on. The artists have clearly been working hard, as they each had an impressive amount of work to show, and it was a treat talk with them about their projects. A memorable and engaging piece by Paul Rucker was one that we especially enjoyed. Rucker stuck large yellow and white post-it notes to the walls of his studio and placed a pile of markers in the middle of the room. As he played a beautiful harmony on his cello (did we mention he’s also an incredibly talented cellist?!), Rucker invited visitors to write something they worry about or fear on the yellow post-its and an adjective to describe themselves on the white. What a beautiful interactive piece - one that made us think about ourselves, our inner thoughts, our power, our voice, the community, the world, and the interconnectedness of it all.

We are blown away by the creativity and intelligence of all of the artists at the Joan Mitchell Center. Read more about them here or see it in person at the next Community Coffee on Wednesday, November 14th.

Art for Art's Sake by Cybele Gontar

Every first Saturday of October, hundreds of galleries and shops throughout New Orleans open their doors late night for Art for Art’s Sake, the second largest art event of the year in New Orleans. We are excited to be opening our October exhibition “Options” by Zona Wainwright on this chic and exciting evening. Degas Gallery will be open from 6-9 pm tonight, October 6. Please come by to enjoy the show and meet artist Zona Wainwright!

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Art for Art’s Sake is a phrase that emerged in the 19th century arguing that art can be “good” because of its formal qualities rather than having a “deeper” context rooted in something deemed more important such as history or religion. This phrase led to ground-breaking artistic movements that forever changed the art world as we know it. Today it is used more casually, to defend the freedom of artistic expression. Either way we are a fan - Happy Art for Art’s Sake! Hope to see you tonight.

Duane Couch at the Freeport-McMoRan by Cybele Gontar

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We are happy to announce that work by Duane Couch is now on view in the Freeport-McMoRan building on Poydras Street.

About Duane:

A lifelong resident of New Orleans, Duane Couch finds inspiration in primitive images and the mark making of children – both spontaneous and sure. Couch’s work is rooted in her interest in the interplay between what is visible on the surface of her paintings and the layers underneath. She feels that this dialogue, in some small way, expresses part of the experience of life. 

“I believe that something of the life and soul of the artist is expressed in his or her work, that paintings are alive with that spirit, and that the viewer responds to it, and the two are united, viewer and art”. 

 -Duane Couch

See the installation today through November 1st at 1615 Poydras St.