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Artists' reception January 10

East County News Service

December 25, 2016 (San Diego) -- The Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation (MTRP) will present an exhibition featuring six award winning artists Deanna Ditzler, Kenda Francis, Joan Hansen, Ralph Kingery, Denise Strahm, and Jerry Vande Berg.

This exhibit will be on display in the Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center Art Gallery from January 2 - 29.  The public is cordially invited to a reception in honor of the artists on Sunday, January 10, 2016 from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.

About the Artists:

Deanna Ditzler

Deanna received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Emporia State University in Southeast Kansas.  After graduation, she worked at Hallmark Cards as an illustrator, being inspired by the use of brilliant, creative color. Deanna has enjoyed being represented in a solo show and many group shows. An award winning artist, she has taught artists of all ages to overcome their limitations and stretch into their own style. Deanna’s work features acrylic landscapes using color to evoke feeling. Her work is represented by local galleries as well as the Art Academy of San Diego.

Kenda Francis

Frustrated with disinterest in the well being of living things, Kenda's mixed media images show animals that are depicted within urban landscapes, with modern graffiti style, playing roles determined by humans. Many of them roar in protest. 

In the complex way graffiti communicates, Kenda's work speaks out for the animals - in words, titles, numbers and statistics, calling for a dialog among viewers, the artist, animals and their spaces. Kenda's work radiates a vibrant and passionate growl to defend our paradise and to encourage appreciation of the natural world, living naturally.

Joan Hansen

Whether using watercolor, oil, or acrylics, Joan paints with passion and an eye for color. She paints landscapes, water scenes, wildlife, floral and wine themes.

Joan says, “As artists, we have the opportunity to express our unique thoughts and passions through the medium of our choice. Interwoven through my work are threads of organic line and luminous color. The organic line symbolizes my love of nature, and the luminous color expresses my continuing passion for the vibrancy of life. It intrigues me to capture ad paint the illusive choreography in nature’s eternal dance of light and shadow.”

Ralph Kingery

Ralph received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design, but never practiced it. He spent most of his career as an urban planner and environmental planner in Arizona and Southern California. Since retirement in 2012, he has returned to his art roots, taking watercolor instruction from Kate Fitzsimmons, joining the San Diego Watercolor Society, the San Diego County Art Mart Association in Balboa Park, and painting, painting, painting. Ralph says” I paint what I love, and luckily there is a lot to love about the visual environment of San Diego.”  This year he is the Vice President of the San Diego Watercolor Society.

Denise Strahm

With a fondness for texture-rich subjects, old churches and peaceful settings, award-winning fine art photographer Denise Strahm draws from her 25+ years in graphic design to create images in simple graphic contemporary compositions.

Denise prefers historic architectural subject matter and although there are usually imprints of human existence, she rarely includes the people themselves in the scene.

Denise’s studio/gallery space is located in Studio #2 at the beautiful Spanish Village Art Center in Balboa Park. The gallery is located at 1770 Village Place and is open seven days a week, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Jerry Vande Berg

Jerry is a former Research Investigator at the Veterans Medical Center and University of California, San Diego. He has studied with internationally famous artists such as Gary Johnson, Lee Kromschroeder and John Seery-Lester. He has received numerous awards and juried Best in Show and First Place in oil and watercolor categories in numerous exhibitions.

His paintings have been purchased by private collectors of wildlife art and many national corporations throughout the United States. An appreciation for the manner in which wildlife exists daily in their environment is Jerry’s primary goal in his paintings.

The MTRP Visitor and Interpretive Center is located at One Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Diego, CA 92119, and it is open daily from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  Admission is free.

The MTRP Foundation was formed in 1988 as a 501(c) (3) non-profit public benefit corporation.  For more information about the MTRP Art Program, please contact Vicky DeLong, Art Coordinator, at 619-286-1361 or Maggie Holloway, MTRP Foundation, at 619-668-3280.


“Warner Springs Ride” by Deanna Ditzler

“Grrr Series: North Winter South Fire” by Kenda Francis

“Oak Creek Canyon” by Joan Hansen

“Rocky Trail” by Ralph Kingery

“Casa Del Prado Theatre” by Denise Strahm

“Misty Trail” by Jerry Vande Berg

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