Kudos logo


Mountain Trails Gallery presents ‘The Spark of Life as Art’ for First Friday

My Best Friend by Sarah Phippen, 24 x 36 oil

My Best Friend by Sarah Phippen, 24 x 36 oil

Originally Published: June 29, 2022 3 a.m.

Mountain Trails Gallery at Tlaquepaque in Sedona presents “The Spark of Life as Art” exhibition which opens on First Friday, July 1, with a reception from 4 to 7 p.m.

The gallery celebrates this special weekend and month of July by honoring those who recognize that creating beauty with art is a special gift. Whether it is storytelling work about history, ranch life, Native American culture, wildlife from the West, a single rose, or the arresting beauty of a Grand Canyon or Sedona landscape, these creators of beauty make us notice.


Reflections of the West by Sue Krzyston, 24 x 30 oil

Falling in love with the American West for Susan Kliewer began with drawing horses and painting the landscapes she saw in magazines found on her grandmother’s table. Susan was also inspired by her talented father, a park ranger who created the awareness of fire prevention with his “Smokey Bear” mascot. But it was later in life, working in a fine art foundry for other famous sculptors, when this award-winning artist found her own voice and started to create her own sculptures from her experiences of the Native American cultures she had come to know and love.

No stranger to drawing, western realist Vicki Catapano was schooled in the buckaroo tradition with horsemanship and customs. She also came to know Native American dancers from a variety of tribes which she later honored in many of her paintings.

And third-generation sculptor Dustin Payne was immersed in ranching, “playing” with clay, and reading Western action stories that came to life in his hands. He sold his first sculpture at age eight and has recently been one of the youngest to be honored with membership in the Cowboy Artists of America.

The daughter of a professional artist, Susanne Nyberg has been making art all her life and her nonstop passion for exceptional landscapes of the Southwest desert has launched her into the limelight with her plein air oil and palette knife paintings.


Ya Ta Hey Hosteen by Susan Kliewer, Bronze, 10.5”h x 9”w x 6”d

Award-winning landscape painter Bill Cramer always had an interest in exploring nature and creating art.

Western contemporary landscape and wildlife painter Tamara Rymer has been drawing and painting since she can remember. Her father would bring home paper, pencils, paints, and art books as he told stories of the family history directly from their Native American and Old West roots, all of which continues to inspire this intriguing artist.

For painter Marcia Molnar, her natural ability was encouraged by her artist father/gallery owner where this budding artist spent her time.

Propelled by a passion to tell the heartfelt story of a working Arizona ranch, multi-generation rancher Shawn Cameron started painting the truth of what she saw and experienced. The honest gift of life comes out in each of Shawn’s paintings that poetically captures the animals and ranchers working the land, as she continues to receive recognition from numerous prestigious organizations.

Animal artist and rancher Sarah Phippen was inspired by her grandfather George Phippen, a prominent western artist and one of the original founders of the Cowboy Artists of American organization. Surrounded with inspiration, Sarah could not help but forge her own journey in pursuit of a creative life.

Self-taught still life artist Sue Krzyston found a way to share the beauty of creation with others as she studied history and pursued collecting Native American historic objects.

Wildlife artists Jeremy Bradshaw, Raymond Gibby, Mark Edward Adams and Bryce Pettit found their way to sculpture from fascinating backgrounds in other arenas including science, biology, as well as falconry. Contemporary expressionist painter Greg Dye sums it all up: “Every day is a new day, with new possibilities waiting to be formed in my imagination, as the emotional energy of a day is pouring out onto the canvas.”

Many of the Mountain Trails Gallery artists have fascinating stories that led the way for them to create memorable works of art for the world to enjoy. Discover more by visiting our website. Mountain Trails Gallery Sedona, located at 336 SR 179, upstairs Suite A201 in Tlaquepaque, is proud to exhibit work by their more than 50 extraordinary artists working in painting, sculpture, and mixed media fine art, as they all contribute to making this gallery a destination for collectors, enthusiasts, and visitors for all over the world.

For more information contact the gallery at 928-282-3225, fineart@mountaintrailssedona.com, mountaintrailssedona.com.