In Old Town Camarillo

2222 Ventura Blvd.

2222 Ventura Blvd.

(805) 383-1368


••• Current Show •••

Our Gallery is open Tue from 11 to 3pm, Wed – Fri 11 – 5pm and Sat 10 – 3pm


Outsider Art, Chinese Calligraphy, and Uppity Women: Different Approaches to Figurative Art 

Opening Reception January 10, 4 – 6 pm

The life experiences of figurative artists Tiger Huang, Maggie Kildee, and Elle-Jé Freeheart could not be more different, yet all three approach the image of the human body as a portal to our emotions. A free reception for their joint exhibition “Image and Essence,” is on Saturday, January 10 from 4:00-6:00 p.m. at the Blackboard Gallery of Studio Channel Islands Art Center in Old Town Camarillo. The exhibit runs January 3 – 28, 2015.

Embracing My Shadow, Dancing My Light Describing herself as an outsider artist, Elle-Jé Freeheart’s ceramic sculpture includes features such as incomplete bodies or unconnected parts or wounds. Rather than being expressions of anguish, the artist explains that the sculpture pieces are containers of emotional feelings: angst or elation made visible. Freeheart says she is self-taught, without art training or private instruction, which she feels has allowed her the freedom to develop her vision without influences from traditional methodology. Her work has been exhibited and is in collections in this country and abroad, and she has been a board member of Green Art People and the Artists Union Gallery. Freeheart’s art career has included book illustration, teaching and writing. In line with Freeheart’s interest in the human body and emotions, she is an aesthetician, herbalist, aroma therapist and massage therapist.

Three Minutes on a Stage The work of Tiger Huang, born in northern China, reflects Chinese traditional art as well as newer American influences. A master in calligraphy and Sumi pen and ink, Huang’s figurative work often blends calligraphy and drawing, using both complicated and sparse strokes to define gesture and expressions. Several pieces in this exhibit explore the intricate meanings of specific Chinese characters, which are boldly painted over the related figures behind them. A calligraphy installation is also part of his exhibition.

Huang graduated in industrial design from Chin Gun Ye Art and Design College in Hu Nan Xin Xian and worked as a designer for major companies in China before coming to the United States. His work has been exhibited in solo and group shows in California. His paintings and drawings are in collections here and abroad. Uppity Women Working with clay has been a passion for many years for Maggie Kildee. Gravitating toward the full round shapes of women, Kildee enjoys the challenge of using clay to express the emotions they might be feeling. Some recent pieces have had a more angular shape, but her terracotta women are all slightly large, plain, uninhibited, and having fun. She often describes her creations as “Uppity Women,” such as the one dancing happily even if she is certainly not young or light on her feet. Kildee’s sculpture emphasizes the women’s shapes and gestures, creating the challenge of expressing their feelings with less detail.

Kildee never envisioned becoming a professional ceramicist. She taught elementary school in Camarillo for 10 years before becoming one of the first women elected to the County Board of Supervisors, where she served for 16 years. When she joined others to help found Studio Channel Islands Art Center, she began working in clay again. Kildee was in Guadalajara when she saw one of Francisco Zuniga’s sculptures, and she credits his work as the inspiration for many of the earthy women she creates. Her pieces are collected throughout the United States, and Kildee has exhibited extensively.




February – gallery dark. We welcome Los Primeros School of Sciences and Arts to their annual school play at the Blackboard Gallery.

March- Gretchen Batcheller and Ty Pownall

April- Brooks Institute Students and Faculty

May- Over Your Sofa, CFE

June- Julia Pinkham, Andrea Haffner, BiJian Fan

July- Joseph Sohm, plus national CFE “Americana”

August- Jordan Poe, Mike Pecsok, Patrick Fisher

September- Michael Pearce

October- Day of Dead/Momento Mori, CFE

November- Tom & Patti Post

December- Members’ Show, CFE

Schedule is subject to change.


Gallery Hours:

Tuesday 11 am – 3 pm

Wednesday through Friday 11 am – 5 pm

Saturday 10 am  – 3 pm