EC Webisodes: Hamlet

Introducing:  EC performances serialized as video webisodes.

We have two webisodes up on our YouTube channel ECArtists.  You can also find them under our GALLERIES page.  Here is one to give you a taste…

Oh, Shakespeare!

Brooding Hamlet (played by James Brizendine) is informed by his father’s ghost, the late King (played by Luiz Gomez), that his own brother (played by Hilda Cotta) killed him, married the dead king’s wife Gertrude (played by Marlen Hernandez), and made himself the new king… If you think about it, you’d probably be brooding, too.  Oh, poor Hamlet!  His emotionally delicate girlfriend Ophelia (played by Calixta Perez) Continue reading

Get On Up… To The EC Office Shop

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EC art is back in the EC shop.  If you missed us at the Artisan Fair, don’t fret.  The EC Office Shop is open all year in Room 6 on the 3rd floor of the Arts Center.  With 4 short flights of stairs, you can get your shopping done and a nice burst of cardio while you’re at it!  Or you could use the elevator, because we have one of those, too. Continue reading

On Exhibit: VESSELS and HOUSES

On the 3rd floor landing, the DIA DE LOS MUERTOS exhibit is coming down to make room for HOUSES.  VESSELS will be featured on the 2nd floor landing.

VESSELS and HOUSES are exhibits of ceramic works made of paper clay.

You may have seen paper clay in your local arts and crafts store.  That paper clay is generally for air drying.  That’s all good, but the EC artists need a lot of material, so we can experiment.  We made our paper clay for firing in the kiln, from a combination of our regular firing clay and a cellulose paper product.  It was a job and a half to make, but Kristine, our Clay/Ceramic Arts Teacher, was on it!


VESSELS started as balloons dipped in paper clay slip.  It was a tedious process of dipping and drying… and dipping and drying… and dipping and—well you get the idea.  Layer by layer, day after day, Continue reading

Time flies…

OMG! It’s been almost a year since our last blog post… The EC artists have been busy, and yes, having fun!

Here’s what’s new…

When you want some EC art, but 18″x24″ is just a tad too much…

We’re upping our game… The EC will now be offering matted prints of artworks by selected EC artists, in addition to individual and boxed sets of note cards. Images, sizes, and prices to come.

Trying out new boxes for our sets of note cards.

Trying out new boxes for our sets of note cards.

2015 Holiday Artisan Fair

The EC artists will be selling prints and note cards, along with ceramic ornaments– letters and hearts– at the 2015 Holiday Artisan Fair.  If you’re looking for a gift, be it for others or for yourself, come to the Merced Multicultural Arts Center at 645 W. Main Street on Friday, Dec 4th, 11am-6pm, and Saturday, Dec 5th, 10am-2:30pm.

Makin' tags for EC artworks.

Makin’ tags for EC artworks.

Paper clay ceramics

In addition to the goods for sale in our booth, we will have more amazing ceramic creations on exhibit, which are also available for purchase.  The EC artists have spent the last few months working in paper clay, and the results are beautiful. In the glass case on the 2nd floor landing– paper clay houses and buildings.  In the glass case on the 3rd floor landing–  paper clay bowls and vessels.  We’ll have more details about EC art on exhibit next week… WE PROMISE!

Paper clay bowls by (l-r) Yadira Prado, Arnold Hernandez, and James Brizendine.

Paper clay bowls by (l-r) Yadira Prado, Arnold Hernandez, and James Brizendine.

2014 Holiday Ornaments

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Rows and rows of letters strung and hung and ready for sale!

Here they are:  the 2014 Enrichment Center ornament… LETTERS.

This year, the EC artists’ ornaments offer a new way to personalize your holiday (or any-day) gift giving and decorating. Our 2014 ornaments go everywhere! On inside trees and outside trees, garland, gifts, and stockings… boxes, bags, hooks and bottles… chains, pins, collars, and key fobs. Personalize your holiday gifts this season, with handmade ceramic letters which can be used year-round.

The letters have been cut from slabs of firing clay and decorated by the artists of the Enrichment Center, with imprints and relief.  They (the letters, not the artists!) were then fired to bisque in our kiln. The artists then spent two weeks painting the letters with glaze, before firing up the kiln again during the week of Thanksgiving.  Continue reading

Dia De Los Muertos: The EC’s Ofrenda

The Enrichment Center hosted a community altar as part of the Merced County Arts Council’s Dia De Los Muertos exhibit during October and November.  Check out this gallery of photos of the exhibit.

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Here are a few photos from the November 1st reception.

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And here are just a few of the amazing altars/ofrendas exhibited in the 2nd floor White Box and Skylight Galleries.

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One Year Later: The Snail Invasion Continues

One year ago, on the eve of the October 2013 Merced Art Hop, the Enrichment Center rolled out the Snail Invasion—a street art project for the community, with a focus on Downtown Merced.

On Friday, October 17, 2014, the EC artists walked up and down around Main Street in Merced, to make another installation of about 300 snails for this evening’s Art Hop.

Over the last year, the artists of the Enrichment Center have installed thousands of small ceramic snails around Downtown Merced. They’ve been tucked into trees, nooks, and holes in the wall, on window ledges and light posts, under bushes, and on top of signs.

The goal of the project is to remind the community that art is all around—unexpected and in the darnedest of places.  A window, a light post, a bush, a sign, a tree…

Here are two snails photographed on Friday, October 17, 2014. The first is from the October 2013 installation. It’s weathered, but still hanging on (or in)! The second is part of the new installation.

One of the first ceramic snails installed in October 2013, photographed still in place in October 2014.

One of the first ceramic snails installed in October 2013, photographed still in place in October 2014.

One of the most recently installed snails, October 2014.

One of the most recently installed snails, October 2014.

When you see a snail, snap a photo and post it to social media—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. #ECSnails, #ECArtists, #MercedSnails, #SnailInvasion.

Dance Like A Zombie?

August 28, 2014. Denise Saelee practices the insanely well-known zombie dance from Thriller.


Almost everyone we know has seen the music video for Michael Jackson’s Thriller, where funky and surprisingly agile dead people rise from their graves to rock out.

In preparation for a new performance project (tentatively titled The EC Halloween Special), the EC artists are studying the dance interlude from the music video.

Emulating a dance from video is hard enough. Emulating a dance performed by a bunch of (very robust) zombies is even more difficult. EC artist Larry Sutton pointed out, “I can’t dance like that. Look. He has big eyes. I don’t have big eyes like that.”  Fair point, Larry. Sometimes, make-up and costumes help us get into a new character. And a zombie is certainly a stretch. Larry gave it his EC-best, as did everyone else… even without the big eyes.


Poll #3 Results: Do Doodle that Doodle that you Doodle So Well

Doodling is one of those things that proves that art is in the DNA– it’s a way of understanding, processing, and expressing. So what do YOU doodle when you doodle? We offered five categories in the poll, as well as an “other” category.  Respondents were allowed to tick off as many categories as appropriate.  Here are the results:

67% of respondents doodle Letters, Lines, and Shapes

50% doodle People and Figures, other than themselves

34% doodle themselves– Self Portraits

17% doodle Plants and/or Animals

and in the “Other” category?… Food!

"Geometric Letter Landscape Doodle" from, credited to

“Geometric Letter Landscape Doodle” from, credited to