Young Artists In Spotlight

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Children will have a special place at the Payson Art League's Autumn 2001 Show and Sale this weekend at the Tonto Apache Activity Center.

Under the supervision of local Western artist Donn Morris, a children's corner has been set aside where young people can try their hand at painting and drawing. The art work of young people also will be on display in the area.

Featured will be the pencil drawings of Eric Haddad, a Payson High School senior. Morris first noticed Haddad's work during a visit to George Conley's PHS art class.

"He pulls in a lot of superhero images," Morris said. "His work is technically outstanding and expresses a great deal of inner feeling."

Also on display will be the work of the Payson Community Kids, a group of young people from disabled families that Morris works with on a regular basis.

"Donn recently conducted a workshop for them," PAL President Diana Garrity said, "and chose some of their best work to display at the show."

A special raffle also will be held to benefit the Hugo DiZinno Education Fund. Almost all of the 35 participating artists have donated a work to be raffled off, with the proceeds going to support art programs in local schools, Garrity said.

DiZinno, who died earlier this year at the age of 85, was a respected and popular local artist.

"He was instrumental in really starting the art league here in Payson," Garrity said. "The fund named in his honor also provides $500 education grants to promising young local artists.

Also featured at the autumn show is "Artists' Alley," a place for fledgling artists who don't yet have a large body of work to display.

"Anywhere from three to five artists share one space," Garrity said. "It's a way to introduce them into the show venue and get them started.

"(Artist's Alley) is also open to artists who have not displayed for more than two years, and to students from Eastern Arizona College's art classes.

New artists showing their work for the first time include Jim Schulte, a surreal artist, and Lola Dunaway, an 80-year-old landscape artist who built her own house after she retired.

Garrity said the league tries to maintain a balance between fine arts and fine crafts at the show; the former including oils, watercolors and pastels, and the latter jewelry, sculpture, wood, pottery, ceramics and glass.

The show opens Friday evening with a reception from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The reception is being held in conjunction with the appearance of pianist Richard Glazier at 7 p.m. at the Payson High School Auditorium, part of the Tonto Community Concert Association series.

"It's kind of a first for Payson to have two cultural events in one evening," Garrity said.

The Payson Art League's Autumn Show continues Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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