Pop artist Tennessee Loveless took up the challenge of painting what Sacramento's all about, and this weekend you can judge whether he nailed it.
Loveless' TENxTENxTEN exhibition, created for Disney Fine Art, will make its worldwide debut at the Vault at Stage Nine in Old Sacramento. The exhibit features 10 collections, each with 10 paintings that explore different themes. The one thing all 100 paintings share is that Loveless includes a portrait of Mickey Mouse's face at the heart of them all.
Stage Nine Entertainment Store's owner, Troy Carlson, talked the Los Angeles-based Loveless into including a Sacramento "destination" piece as one of 10 cities in his U.S. cities collection. He got Loveless to visit and drove him around town.
"I told him that Sacramento's the City of Trees and that transportation has always played an instrumental part the trains, the rivers," Carlson said. "So, he laid it out so that all the transportation comes into Mickey's head. There's the Sacramento River and the Crocker and Sac State. He was really fascinated with Humpty Dumpty at Fairytale Town."
Loveless also includes images of the Tower and I Street bridges with little captions showing one loves to raise and the other loves to pivot. The Bee's mascot Scoopy, a creation of Walt Disney, also gets a nod.
Loveless' work explodes with color, but he is colorblind and meticulously maps out pigments he'll use.
Carlson began showing destination pieces from Disney fine artists in 2006 to help spread the word about his memorabilia store. Loveless' "Sactown Heart" is the fifth such piece.
A Loveless collector in Pocket already purchased the original for $6,000. Reproductions are available in limited editions and can be ordered starting today: $50 for lithograph prints, $195 for the giclées on canvas, and $595 for large giclées on canvas.
Loveless will be at Stage Nine, 102 K St., from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday to personalize the pieces. The voice of Mickey Mouse, Bret Iwan, will join him Saturday. Call (916) 538-7754 about the artwork.
Chef comes west
After a nationwide search, the Selland Group has hired John Griffiths to be its new chef de cuisine at The Kitchen.
The position opened in January when former head chef Noah Zonca left to go out on his own. Zonca is now part of the team developing Capital Dime at 1801 L St. in midtown Sacramento, the spot once occupied by the now-defunct L Wine Lounge.
Josh Nelson, a partner in the Selland Group, said Zonca had done the complete cycle at The Kitchen, moving from dishwasher to head chef, and it came to the point where he wanted to open his own place.
"We support him in doing that," Nelson said. "Patrick Mulvaney worked with us. Marcus Marquez worked with us. He did L Wine Lounge and now he's at Goose & Gander. Ame Harrington, she was the chef for L Wine Lounge and now does catering."
Nelson has advised Zonca and other Kitchen alumni as they've made their own way. The Selland family undertook a national search to find Griffiths.
He comes to Sacramento from St. Louis, where he was campus executive chef at Washington University. Griffiths ran all of Washington University's dining facilities, including a fine- dining establishment that sourced 100 percent of its ingredients locally.
Before Washington University, Griffiths ran the kitchen at a St. Louis restaurant called Truffles and won acclaim for his modern take on Italian cuisine.
Like Zonca, Griffiths will work closely with executive chef Randall Selland.
Up and running
Graduation day came May 25 for 32 construction management students at California State University, Sacramento, and department chair Mikael Anderson reports that every single one of them landed jobs. It's the second year that all grads had jobs.
"Companies that haven't looked to us in the past are looking now," Anderson said. "The industry is turning around. The economy is better. There is a lot of job placement in the Bay Area, and the Sacramento market is looking positive. Forty percent of our grads were placed locally."
Regular readers of this column will recall that these students wowed industry judges when they were given real-life construction challenges in an intercollegiate competition in Reno.
Rick Ameil needed less time than he thought to get his staff at the new Giant Orange hamburger stand, 1407 Howe Ave., to meet his marks.
He closed Wednesday after being open less than a full day, and ended up reopening by Friday, not Monday as he had predicted.
He said sales averaged $700 an hour during Friday lunch and dinner, and Saturday was going well, too.
"Lucky to have two graduates of Cordon Bleu in our kitchen!" he wrote in an email.
IF YOU GO
Pop artist Tennessee Loveless will be at the Vault at Stage Nine, 102 K St. in Old Sacramento, from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday to personalize the limited editions.
The voice of Mickey Mouse, Bret Iwan, will join him Saturday. Call (916) 538-7754 about the artwork.