Since this is my first President’s message I must take a few lines to thank Tess Mosko-Scherer and David Bradley for the years of hard work and the thousands of intelligent decisions that made AAG what it is today.  Almost everything you see at AAG has been touched in some way by these two past Presidents.   Also I must thank the board of directors for their dedication, hard work and guidance.  They keep AAG functioning like a well-oiled machine.  And you the members, I want to thank you for your participation.  This entire organization exists for you – it exists to help you succeed.

            How does AAG help you succeed?  First: AAG opens doors with exhibitions,  workshops, demos and events.  These events help you grow as an artists. Second:  AAG gives you a chance to be part of a larger community of artists – this is something money can’t buy.  Third: AAG provides a comfortable place to acquire and share art related knowledge. AAG is a valuable asset to local artists, the city of Phoenix, and the state of Arizona.

            Here is a little story I want to share.  It reminds us of how important our art work can be.  In 1825 Thomas Cole took a steam boat up the Hudson River to Catskill landing.  From there he carried his easel, canvas and paints up into the Catskill Mountains and painted the now famous Oxbow painting which hangs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  For the first time many people living in dark overcrowded cities saw the wide open spaces just over the horizon.   Soon other artists, carpenters, teachers, farmers, merchants were heading west to build the great nation we enjoy today.  Never underestimate the contribution your art can make and the AAG workshops, critiques and demos provide a great opportunity for you to hone your artistic skills.

            Be sure to attend the General Meeting on September 17, 2019.  There will be a reception for last year’s Artist of the Month winners and the Artist of the Year winner plus their art work will be on display.  Also there will be an educational demo by Ann Osgood. She will be demonstrating how to paint flowers in acrylic. Ann Osgood has a workshop on October 18, 2019.  Sign up and learn how to paint large flowers in Acrylic.

Plus the annual budget for 2019-2020 will also be presented and adopted.  There will be a critique session so bring a piece of your artwork to have it critiqued.  And you can enter a piece of your artwork in the Artist of the Month contest.

            On another note, if you want to take full advantage of all the opportunities the digital world has to offer, attend Tess Mosko-Scherer’s digital media labs.  Digital Media Labs will be held monthly on the second Friday of each month.

            Be sure to visit for up to date information about all the events at AAG. I look forward to seeing you there!

            I am looking forward to a successful and productive year at AAG.  Let’s kick it off with an educational meeting and reception on September 17, 2019.

Best Regards

Ivan Halvorson