Collage Art on Display at Ukiah’s Medium Art Gallery – The Ukiah Daily Journal


A new exhibit featuring collage art opened at the Medium Art Gallery in Ukiah last week during the February First Friday Art Walk. Titled Cut & Paste, the exhibit features more than 60 pieces of a style of art that doesn’t usually take center stage.

Collage is an art form made up of overlapping pieces of material, such as photographs, fabric, colored and textured paper, and other types of mixed media. The process focuses on cutting and tearing elements from disparate pieces to create a new shape, tell a new story or communicate a new message before arranging and gluing them to the chosen surface.

Aaron Aguilar’s “DecouStyle” guitar hangs from the ceiling of the gallery.

Unlike other art forms that may rely on proficient technical skills that may take longer to master, such as painting and sculpting, the artistic expertise of collage lies in the choice, arrangement and fixing. The term “collage” comes from the French word colle, which means “to stick”.

“This exhibition is my favorite we’ve curated,” says Lillian Rubie, chair of the board of the Deep Valley Arts Collective, the nonprofit that runs the gallery.

“There is something wonderfully complex and simple about collage. It’s a simple medium but can be as detailed and complex as you want. says Rubie, adding, “The variety of styles and subject matter is wonderful. There is such a cohesion between all the works presented.

The exhibit primarily includes local artists from the Mendocino County area. It includes a handful of pieces by artists from Grass Valley, Los Angeles, and as far away as Dallas, Texas.

The gallery chose collage as its theme because it’s a style of art that the board members all personally enjoy, and they wanted to shake things up a bit. Part of the goal behind the gallery is to showcase art that is not traditionally seen in the region.

Rubie says that “while we appreciate the many landscapes and animals that our beautiful surroundings often inspire, we also appreciate bold, gritty, and exploratory works such as those on this show.”

The gallery was surprised by the number of sculptures it received, which forced it to find creative solutions when installing the exhibition. There are two guitars and a skateboard hanging from the ceiling. There’s a rusty old one-handed saw screwed to the wall, and there’s even an old French door – all glued and turned into works of art.

Collage is an art form made up of overlapping pieces of material, such as photographs, fabric, colored and textured paper, and other types of mixed media.

During the art walk on the first Friday of February, the gallery has partnered with the Pear Tree Center to offer a fun card-making station for Valentine’s Day. “The Pear Tree Center has generously offered to donate supplies to help create a fun arts event for the community,” Rubie said. A table has been set up in the middle of the gallery filled with supplies that visitors can make cards with. There were two kits available, Rubie said. One of the kits was a “jar of hearts,” along with stickers and other supplies for younger kids. The other kit was a tin box full of supplies to create an accordion-style card that was better suited to those with a bit more patience and skill.

“Wonderful Valentines have been created.” Ruby said. “And the best part was that the families that came to the opening all seemed to be having a blast.” The kits were a good distraction for the parents who brought the kids to the opening, she said. Parents were free to walk around to see the show while their children made cards. Rubie says there are still kits available at the door and she needs to pick them up this weekend in time for Valentine’s Day.

The community collage station, where gallery visitors can create a shared work of art.

For this exhibition, the gallery has also created space for a community art project in the form of a shared collage experience. “Part of our mission is to create a space for the community to create art, not just see it,” Rubie says, adding, “We knew we were incredibly inspired by this show and we thought that others would feel the same.”

A large canvas was covered with local maps and tissue paper and placed in one corner of the room. Next to it is a table filled with supplies: old magazines, books, scissors, glue, stickers with some of the items brought in by the artists featured in the collage exhibit.

Rubie says, “It was fun watching people have to tear themselves apart after spending time carefully cutting and pasting their additions. I hope they went home and continued to create.

The community collage will be available for the duration of the show.

The ongoing pandemic has played a big role in how the gallery organizes community events. Still, Rubie says they will continue to create more opportunities for people to see and make art, saying, “This is just the start of a much bigger vision.”

The exhibit will run through Sunday, March 20, and per Mendocino County ordinance, all gallery visitors are asked to wear masks. Medium Art Gallery is located inside the Pear Tree Center at 522 E. Perkins St. in the former Radio Shack store. The gallery is open Friday from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information, call 707-234-8667 or visit


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