Recently, the Vertu Fine Arts Gallery held an open house for Michael Goettee. Goettee, a well known Western artist, was showing off some of his amazing creations at Vertu.
The event (catered by Bodega Burger and Lounge) was graced with the best food imaginable: raspberry lemon cheesecake and chocolate mousse for dessert; a cheese platter containing smoked cheddar, basil, mozzarella, gouda, dill havarti, and baby Swiss for the hors d’oeuvre; and rosemary-balsamic glazed lamb chops with bourbon-marinated meatballs and fried lobster ravioli for the main course.
The Work of Michael Goettee
Goettee is becoming well-known for many of his works, but one of the most prominent is the painting of a New Mexican style stucco wall (containing a red fan), which he aptly titled Devoted Fan of Sante Fe.
“My first visit to Santé Fe…I was walking up and down every side street, and I saw this fan – I had no other interest than that fan,” Goettee said, adding that he painted it after being inspired by the style and appearance which was all around him while visiting New Mexico.
Another piece Goettee touted is Flying in Spite of it All, which displays a hot air balloon flying pilotless around a violent storm, a painting he created after being inspired by the rising balloons of the balloon fiesta and the rolling landscape he photographed just south of where the balloons take off.
Goettee’s favorite work is a painted silhouette of a very young cowboy riding a horse against the moonlit background, displayed next to a wooden toy horse. Titled Changing Horses in this Dream, it is one he takes pride in.
“In my childhood, TV westerns and toy horses inspired midnight rides in my dreams,” Goettee said. “The old expression ‘don’t change horses in the middle of the stream,’ inspired the title.”
Michael Snyder’s Underwater Works
The rest of the gallery was equally enchanting. The works of Matthew Snyder (a former scuba-diver-turned-artist) were unusual but fascinating. Matt received a BFA in Industrial Design at California College of the Arts in 2003 and has since almost exclusively worked in metal fabrication processes. His pieces were inspired by the creatures and plant life from ocean excursions he witnessed firsthand. Each piece is hand-carved and made from steel (along with other metals).
“My wife and I are scuba divers,” Snyder explained, “and so I kind of wanted to capture the other-worldliness – the animals the plants and everything under there… and wanted to recreate it.”