What’s that warm and fuzzy feeling in the air this time of year? It’s all of the love for Hearts for the Arts! Our heart- and love-themed fundraiser features a silent auction of unique artwork donated by local artists.

Stop by Artisans Gallery between February 1 and February 13, 2018 to view and bid on a beautiful new art piece just in time for Valentine’s Day. All of the proceeds from the silent auction go to the Arts Council’s Arts Education programs SPECTRA and Mariposa’s Arts – which serve more than 17,000 youth across Santa Cruz County.


  • First Friday Reception: February 2, 6-8pm
  • Meet the Artists! Artist Reception: Sunday February 4, 3-5pm

Take a look below for a special sneak peek at a handful of the art and artists you’ll meet at Hearts for the Arts!

Georgeanne Cavataio

Why are local artists donating to Hearts for the Arts 2018? Artist Georgeanne Cavataio knows first-hand the benefit of arts education programs like SPECTRA. “I taught elementary school for 25 years and appreciated and enjoyed the many artists in residence experiences for my students that were provided through the SPECTRA program,” she says. “I am happy to have an opportunity to contribute to the program that is so valuable and vital for students!” Thanks Georgeanne!

When we asked what keeps her inspired, she replied, “My husband! He totally lights my fire because of who he is and because of all of the support he provides me to explore, learn, create, and try new things.”




James Aschbacher

Artist James Aschbacher has been contributing to the Hearts for the Arts 2018 auction every year since 1992! “That’s 26 years of helping to support the most important Arts Organization in Santa Cruz County,” as he puts it. “My special love is for the Open Studios Tour but being a past SPECTRA artist, I’m also passionate about Arts Education for our local schools.” Thanks for your dedication and support, James!

What keeps his creative juices flowing? “I’m inspired by the wonder and magic of everyday life. It’s like every day is a holiday!”





Randie Silverstein

Randie Silverstein explains why she created this beautiful piece of fused glass art especially for Hearts for the Arts: “It is vitally important for me to participate in this auction! As a former SPECTRA artist, I really understand where this money is going. We must fight hard to preserve the arts in the schools. I can go into all the ways in which art for the developing mind and beyond are so intrinsic to our culture and way of life, but I will just say that my life would not be what it is if I wasn’t able to explore the arts in school as a young person. Let’s all do what we can to support this wonderful arts community and its involvement in our local schools!”



Jeanne Rosen Sofen

Jeanne Rosen Sofen Art‘s contribution to the Hearts for the Arts auction is a unique encaustic piece. She even shared before and after photos to show how her encaustic piece came to fruition by applying and removing layers of wax and oil bar.




Ann Baldwin May

Check out this exciting piece-in-progress from local artist Ann Baldwin May! Want to see the finished product? You’ll have to stop by Artisans Gallery during Hearts for the Arts 2018 to see where this fun creation ends up!







Kerri Linden

Artist Kerri Linden donated not one, but TWO great pieces up for bidding during Hearts for the Arts! The first is a fun fabric collage with Japanese and Australian crystal beads, while the second is a unique collection of recycled aluminum can hearts. Which of them is making you feel the love?






Sonia Le

Hearts for the Arts is all about sharing the love – like donating artist Sonia Le’s feline studio helper pictured here! It looks like their teamwork paid off and her custom clutch by Cosmo Chic SC will be ready for your bids at Artisans Gallery starting February 1.





Tracy Thuringer

A life-long crafter, Tracy Thuringer has been drawn to stained glass for as long as she can remember. “I love stained glass, ceramics, quilting, painting, beading, wood working and just about anything else you can make with your hands,” she says. When she finally got the chance to take a class, she fell in love with the craft as well as the finished product. “I have always loved color, so all that colored glass is candy for my eyes!”

This sweet hanging piece is made out of lead came and glass globs. “This is my first year to donate to this wonderful cause.” Thank you for joining us, Tracy!




Amy Wolfe

Local artist Amy Wolfe is ecstatic to participate in Hearts for the Arts! “As an artist with a Bachelors in Art Ed, I know with every fiber of my being how ESSENTIAL and VITAL it is to create art,” she says. “My heart-headed handmade adorable activism is reflecting back people’s truest heart-headed nature – and hopefully inspiring them to explore their own vast creativity.” We couldn’t agree more!






Mary Mosier

Artist Mary Mosier is bringing her love-ly assemblage art all the way from Portland for Hearts for the Arts! This fun piece is made of 5 basic materials: reclaimed wood from an old chair, salvaged sheet metal, old rusty wire from the garden, a “retired” paintbrush, and (most importantly) her favorite art quote from Picasso!






Michael Bashista

We’re tickled pink about the incredible variety of art that will be waiting for your bids at Hearts for the Arts 2018 – like this beautiful sculpture by Michael Bashista titled “Love Does Not Hide.” See it in person at Artisans Gallery!







Liz Lyons Friedman

Liz Lyons Friedman feels a real connection to our Hearts for the Arts auction. “As a former high school art teacher, I love participating in “Hearts for the Arts” because it benefits the Arts Council’s Art Education programs,” she says. Not only that, but she gets to show off her colorful work with our theme: “Working with color excites me. Romance is one of my favorite subjects!”

Heidi Michelle Woodmansee

Artist Heidi Michelle Woodmansee paints primarily florals and botanicals in watercolor and acrylic. Influenced by her early years growing up surrounded by flower fields of incredible beauty, her paintings are colorful and lively, and convey a sense of whimsy and wonder at the beauty of the natural world.

Heidi says, “I am thrilled to contribute to Hearts for the Arts! The Arts Council is vital to art education and public art in Santa Cruz county, both of which I believe are essential to the culture of our community. My participation is from my heart, with thanks.”





Stacy Frank

Artist Stacy Frank of Stacy’s Studio created “Indigo Heart” specifically as her contribution for this year’s arts education fundraiser: a multiple drop monotype using masking, offset and ghost printing.

Get a behind the scenes look at the process of this unique donation by viewing her video here, and see the final result in person at Artisan’s Gallery!





A GIANT THANK YOU to Artisans Gallery for hosting this annual event, to all of the participating artists for your vision and generosity, and to our 2018 event sponsor Palace Art!

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