Date(s) - 11/19/2022
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Join art and music lovers on Saturday, November 19 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Metropolitan, the historic quonset hut-turned-theater in San Andreas, to kick off a fundraiser to support music education in Calaveras County schools. You’ll enjoy desserts by Mo’s Devil Food bakery as well as a no-host bar and snack bar presented by Fourth Wall Entertainment. For your entertainment, Calaveras High School grad Hunter Reusche will be playing guitar during the reception from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Guitars UnStrung features old guitars from the guitar class at Calaveras High School. After many years of high school students learning to play on them, the instruments were past the point of repair. Local artists reimagined the worn-out guitars as visual sculptures, and donated their artwork to be auctioned. The auction, which lasts until December 31, 2022, will begin at the dessert social. You’ll be able to see all the guitars at the party and place your initial bid. After the event, the auction will be online.
Guitars UnStrung is a collaboration between the Calaveras County Arts Council (CCAC) and the Calaveras Youth Organization (CYO). All proceeds go to the California Youth Organization, a local organization that supports music education in Calaveras County public schools as well as supporting community music performances.
According to Executive Director Kathy Mazzaferro, “While the school was able to replace some of the guitars in time for the start of the school year they anticipate that maintenance and replacement will be an on-going challenge. This fundraiser will help assure that money is available to keep music programs like the guitar program healthy and the kids won’t have to fret.”
The guitars the artists created for the show are fanciful, fun, and imaginative. Frogs leap across an old guitar on a string in Kevin Brady’s appropriately named Hop-a-Long, while his piece titled Craft Art Fair commemorates the North Beach Fair of 1986 with delicate etchings of artists who performed at the event.
Lois Conklin’s piece, called “Tangled Color,” sings with lace-like patterns over blocks of color. Cyndie Klorer took pattern in a different direction, painting gold filigree on a red background to make a guitar that practically does its own Flamenco dance.
“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” by Ann and Elizabeth Seely, brings together three ideas on a pink and purple background, with the song “Love can build a bridge” apposed to the title of Olivia Rodrigo’s punk-influenced teen anthem “God, It’s Brutal Out Here,” and the eponymous girls’ anthem by Cyndi Lauper.
The rock and roll theme continues with “Winter,” by J.M. Heath. A flurry of white and a strip of runes cover the front of a black guitar. A snarling white-haired wraith peers from the sound hole, inviting you (or daring you) to peer inside. In opposition to Winter, Heath created a second, more peaceful guitar, called “Nature’s Instrument” that is covered in mosses and bark, making the guitar look like a deep forest floor.
Sometimes guitars can take on lives of their own, associated with an artist but seeming to exist in their own right. Gordon Branch created a replica of Willie Nelson’s legendary “Trigger” guitar, a testament to an instrument that has it’s own mystique. Branch caught the look of the old guitar, right down to the hole above the bridge.
Perhaps the most fantastical guitar in the show is “Fantastical Tree Soirée” by Victoria Fout. Fout, who works in heavily textured acrylic paints, wrapped a guitar in flowers, leaves and vines. A fairy perches in the sound hole, as if enjoying tunes only she can hear.
None of these guitars are playable—they’re not structurally sound enough to restring— but they make a different kind of music, one you experience with your eyes and hear with your heart.
The reception will be on Saturday, November 19 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Metropolitan at 59 Main Street in San Andreas. For more information, call 209/775-1774 or email email@example.com, or go to www.calaverasarts.org.