Local artists help define ‘Love, Loss’

28 pieces will be sold in silent auction this week

Artwork accompanies actors Barb Berry and Desiree Amyx Mackintosh in “Love, Loss and What I Wore,” through this weekend at Columbia Center for the Arts.

Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea.
Artwork accompanies actors Barb Berry and Desiree Amyx Mackintosh in “Love, Loss and What I Wore,” through this weekend at Columbia Center for the Arts.

Art and theater blend in a unique way with the stage production of “Love, Loss, and What I Wore,” which closes this weekend.

Artwork plays a key role in the comic drama at Columbia Center for the Arts, as three local artists drew images of clothing that accompany the comic and poignant vignettes that make up the play, a comedy by Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron.

The 28 drawings by J. Niels Harvey, Cathleen Rehfeld and Karen Watson are being sold in silent auction, through Saturday, with proceeds going to the arts center. Bids can be made on show nights, or anyone can visit CCA to place a bid, said director Judie Hanel.


Artists and examples of their “Love, Loss” works, from left: J. Niels Harvey, Cathleen Rehfeld and Karen Watson.

The works are acrylics on illustration board, and the artists created them in one six-hour session in May.

“It was a lot of fun. We shared brushes and ideas,” Rehfeld said.

The artists added their own touches to prescribed descriptions of the clothing, provided by the playwrights.

“It was almost like a class assignment, to replicate the images to the best of our ability,” Watson said. “But I think we all brought to it our own style and hand.”

The monologues and multi-character vignettes revolve around recollections by narrator Gingie (Brenda Hering).

“The clothing tells the stories of all the people she has loved, and lost,” said cast member Emily Vawter, who is also education coordinator at the Center for the Arts.

The three artists collaborated on the drawings of Girl Scout uniforms, prom dresses, cocktail dresses and other attire.

The garments represent the characters and what they were experiencing at the time.

On stage, actor Irene Fields changes the pictures as more and more characters, and their stories, unfold courtesy of eight actors playing 28 parts.

The artists divided up the images more or less randomly, but some had a more personal connection than others for the artists.

“I was a Brownie when I was a girl, and it was kind of a bad experience, so I got that one,” said Watson, of Hood River.

“I had twins, and so I got the image of the twins,” said Harvey, of White Salmon, who has been a professional artist for the past three years.

Rehfeld’s art partners joked that she is “the fashion plate,” so she was assigned the more elegant ones.

“I don’t know if I’m any more of a fashion plate than they are but I do have a strong affinity for fabric and pattern, so I chose ones that had strong patterns,” said Rehfeld, of Hood River.

All three artists are regular contributors to exhibits at Columbia Art Gallery at CCA.


CCA is open daily from noon to 5 p.m. in the summer.

Shows are at 7:30 p.m. July 18-20. (Performances run 2:05, including intermission.)

The performances also include four original monologues written by cast members.

Tickets are $18 for adults and $14 for seniors and students; available at Waucoma Bookstore, the arts center and online at www.columbiaarts.org. The production is suitable for mature teenagers.

Latest stories

Latest video:

Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

Log in to comment

News from our Community Partners