RM Virtual Gallery

Now in its eighth year, the Rancho Mirage Artists Tour and Pop-Up Gallery has pivoted from in-person to online, offering visitors a stunning 3D gallery experience running from April 5 through May 28, 2021.
Presented by the City of Rancho Mirage Cultural Commission, the event was free for artists to enter and showcases their work to viewers worldwide. Anyone can access the virtual 3D exhibition by visiting the Library and Observatory’s website at ranchomiragelibrary.org/Artists.
“Rather than drive from studio to studio and visit homes, which has been a great format for many years that is obviously untenable this year, now visitors can enjoy seeing artists work from anywhere. We have transitioned from local to global to showcase our community talent to the whole world,” says Sally Traidman, chair of the Rancho Mirage Cultural Commission.
With more time to focus on creativity during a shut-down year, local artists are producing exciting work, and lots of it.
“We selected 75 works from 220 entries. That’s more than double the number of entries than previous years. I’m also pleased to say that more than half the artists are first-time entrants, living and working in our own backyard,” says Jean Range, event chair. “We are no longer constrained by physical gallery space and so can serve the community in bigger and better ways this year.”
One new participant is Carole Hatcher, an assemblage artist who recently moved into a new studio in Sunrise Country Club. Like the show itself, Carole’s work is unbound by reality, as she re-purposes everyday materials into clever, provocative pieces that defy scale. People can see Carole at work in her studio by clicking on a video icon in the virtual gallery—one of several “In-Studio” live vignettes that link the artist to their art in up-close, personal and educational ways.
“The ability for users to visualize a painting on their own wall automatically scaled to the size of the room is a very slick feature,” says Benzek, owner of Benzek Design, “a tool that no other local group is using — yet. It has been an honor to work on this exciting project alongside the team at the Rancho Mirage Library.”
Another unique aspect of the show is the inclusion of student artwork from Rancho Mirage High School, facilitated by artist and teacher Toby Allan Bresson. Teens spending a year away from the classroom has resulted in some very expressive work, according to Bresson, and has afforded students a much-needed creative outlet.