This cosmic trooth was brought home to me in spades this morning. Leslie decided to go see Avatar with her friend Mel (everyone I know has panned it) so I went in for a solitary brunch at Le Bistro with my friend, the newspaper.
I share a back entrance to my building with a community art gallery, The Brandon, which has some first rate contemporary artists. I regularly leave old frames by their door and today they may have returned the favor. Propped up against our dumpster were two large paintings by the late Dorothy Finley, with a free sign taped to them.
Finley was a very accomplished artist. I have actually purchased her work before for my own collection. These two works on board are quite good, the one titled Taipei better than the other to my eye.
Perhaps they were too large and the folks got tired of storing them. I do not have any idea why they were liberated from their long repose. But I am happy to give them a home, however temporary it may prove to be.
I looked up her obituary:
FALLBROOK - Dorothy A. Finley, 83, died Tuesday, Aug. 10, at her home. Born Dec. 15, 1920, in Seattle, she lived in Fallbrook since 1974. She attended Fresno State College and continued her studies in Japan, Taiwan, Germany, and the U.S. She was a prize winning painter and teacher since 1958. Her works are in numerous museums and private collections. Mrs. Finley was preceded in death by her husband, David Finley, in 1982. She is survived by her niece-in-law, Paula Huntley of North Augusta, S.C.; grandnephews Frank Fortune and Bryan Fortune; cousin Robert Morrison; and god-daughter Kerry Cristina Njust of Santa Cruz.
At the request of the deceased no services will be held. Inurnment will be at Riverside National Cemetery. A retrospective show of her paintings will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 4, at the Brandon Gallery. Proceeds will go to the Fallbrook Art Association for the Dorothy Finley Awards to be presented at future shows in Fallbrook.
In lieu of flowers, donations in her name may be made to the Fallbrook Art Association, or the Fallbrook Historical Society Building Fund.
I know that she was a teacher. I see that she won multiple awards including Best of Show. Numerous solo shows. A real talent hidden in our small town burg, a fact that kept her from securing more notoriety in her lifetime. And it is a sad but true fact that women have a lot harder time getting respect than men in the art world, a truism that has been enforced for centuries. That is why so many women painters have historically used their initials to sign their work, or like Marjorie Reed, sometimes adopted a male pseudonym. She may have had to keep her muse on a back burner to raise a family or a husband... I want to learn more about Dorothy Finley.
Minutes ago, I found a San Dieguito Art Guild biography that sheds a little more light. She studied with Walter McCown in Waco, Texas, Louisa Jenkins at Big Sur, Heinz Kusel at Fresno State, A. Madrigal at Yale and the great Josef Albers for Color Theory. On the local front she worked and studied with such luminaries as Robert E. Wood, Linda Doll, Sebastien Capella, Vera Fields, Carl Provder, Pauline Doblado and Carol Barnes.
I hope to see that these wonderful abstract works, which I have rescued from the ignominy of the dustbin, are given a new home with someone who respects and appreciates an artist who should not be forgotten.