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'Trash to Treasure' is a must see

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By The Staff

More than 75 people turned out to the "Trash to Treasure" art opening Saturday night to see the 47 highly-creative entries, including five from exhibit judge Chick Schwartz.   Chick is a sculptor who works in bronze, cement, wood, ceramics and found objects. His work has been featured in more than 25 one person shows in galleries and museums across the U.S. and Canada.   Chick and his wife Marsha are the artists who conceived and built the fisherman and fish in the CKAC Sculpture Garden. Together they’ve owned and operated two galleries over the last 40 years, one in Atlanta and one in Newport, Vermont.  Chick now creates his pieces in his home studio (under his house in Kiss Me Quick). Follow the sign on Hwy 24 to "Fine Art" and you will find art. The CKAC is grateful for Chick’s willingness to serve as judge for this show and also display his art.   "After our initial tour of the works,” said Marsha Schwartz, who read from a statement that she and Chick prepared, “It became really obvious that making one choice was going to be (tough). We really wanted at least three first prizes!! We discussed what the essence of creativity meant and decided that, while there were many works and assemblages that were very creative and pleasing to the eye in and of themselves, the sense of this show was the creative use of discarded/waste things.  “That meant that the creator had to see the garbage as something other than garbage - the transformation that takes place in an artist's mind that is the true flash of creativity. The example we hold up for ourselves is Picasso's Bull - a bicycle seat for the head and the handlebars as the horns. The utter simplicity of this work is it's genius.  “The ability to see something other than what meant for is, for us, the truly creative act. Barbara Kingsolver said that taking a slice of life and reproducing it really isn't creative - but taking that slice and making it yours in some unique way - that's creativity.” The winning artist was Sandra Buckingham who created a multicolored basket made out of a five and a half foot piece of ripped up electrical wiring that she found along the street. The basket was adorned with beads made from a discarded flyer for last year’s Old Florida Celebration of the Arts Festival.  The creative award of $100 was made possible by Carol Patillo who established a CKAC fund in memory of her mother, artist Jeanne Holley Franck.  Buckingham donated her prize money back to the Arts Center.  There were 25 entries from CKS middle and high school students, as well. CKS Art Teacher Debby Manansala coordinated this activity with. Ribbons made of material scraps by the CKAC were given the each student who participated. The ribbons can be used as book marks after the event. The Trash to Treasure art exhibit was conceived almost simultaneously by the Energy Advisory Panel members, the CKAC Board and the CKS in its plans to implement recycling at the school last year. The show will run through February.