A Behind the Scenes Look

What a thrill it was to hang my show at Guardino Gallery a couple of weeks ago. I always like behind the scenes photos, so I thought it would be fun to share the highlights of the hanging on May 25, 2022. My show partner, Nadine Gay, was there with her husband, and my husband/studio assistant/business manager showed up and did a bit of everything to help get the show hung. It took six of us four hours to get the whole show hung.

I did an earlier post about Howard’s hanging of my 25-piece grid made up of individual 8×8 inch pieces, and you can see that post by clicking here.

The show is up through June 28, 2022.

Salvage Collage: A Sort of Magic – Opening Reception

The opening reception for my show (with ceramic artist Michelle Gallagher) at Guardino Gallery, was on Thursday, July 25. It was a warm evening and lots of people were out enjoying art and the festivities of Last Thursday on Alberta.

The official photos:

Michelle Gallagher, Donna Guardino, and me

The unofficial photos:

Alea and me
Howard chats with Stacey and Fred
Greg Carrigan catching up with friends
Howard and Donna watch the festivities of Last Thursday on Alberta
With my daughter Amy
Stan and Bobbie
Grandson Major ponders the art
Howard and Steph

Thank you to everyone who came out for the opening and for those who have been visiting since the show opened.

Salvage Collage: A Sort of Magic

My show is hung. After working on a variety of pieces over the past year and a half, I can take a deep breath and revel in the accomplishment of creating a body of work and getting to share it at Guardino Gallery. All of the pieces I have been working on for this show have been created out of old books. My Artist Statement pretty much says it all:

Dayna Collins has always loved old books. She hyperventilates at the sight of books which are stained, defaced, torn or marked up. She rips battered books apart, reclaiming their faded fragments, and creates collages using only materials she has excavated.  Dayna’s mixed media pieces reflect the passage of time, repurposing the scraps that are worn and weathered, transforming the aged and tattered pieces into something unexpected and beautiful, celebrating their fragile decay.

Here’s the tiniest glimpse of what has been going on over the past 18 months:

Then it became time to begin putting the pieces together into some sort of format for presentation. I ended up using six different formats.

Salvage Collages on vintage blocks.
Book boards floating in a custom black frame.
“A Lulling Possibility of Happiness,” salvage collage on book board.
“A Shattered Sense of Normality,” matted and framed in white.
“Secrets Spill Out,” salvage collage on vintage piece of wood.
“Hope Carson,” salvage collage on watercolor paper, mounted on cradled panel.

Then there was the Herculean task of titling, mounting, photographing, inventorying, and packing. There were a few hiccups with the floating and the mounting, but after a few tears, I nutted up and found a solution.

Prepping for the “floating” of the book board collages.
My photography studio.

It was fun to work in so many styles, using the same materials to create entirely different looks. Unfortunately, it was a challenge for Donna and Gail to hang such disparate styles of work. But they did a magnificent job and created combinations I never would have imagined.

One of my favorite things about having a show at Guardino (this is my fourth one!), is designing the window. As soon as I got notice that I would have a show in July, I started plotting and planning for the window.

It turned out just as I had hoped.

Photo courtesy of ceramic artist Michelle Gallagher.

The show opens on Thursday, July 25, from 6-9 pm. I’m sharing the Feature Gallery with my friend and fellow artist, Michelle Gallagher, who has created a delightful series of ceramic corvids. Their dark beauty compliment my pieces perfectly and we were excited to share this show. Michelle took some great photos, so here is a peek at our show. . . . hopefully this will entice you out tomorrow night for a summer evening of merriment and refreshments (and to experience Last Thursday on Alberta).

Photo courtesy of ceramic artist Michelle Gallagher.
Photo courtesy of ceramic artist Michelle Gallagher.
Photo courtesy of ceramic Michelle Gallagher.

PS Last weekend our local YMCA had their final book sale in their old building. Of course, I was there first thing on Friday morning, restocking my art supplies . . . .

Stash of raw materials.


Day of the Dead: A Favorite Show

“Everything Accounted For,” by Dayna J. Collins, created December, 2016.

Guardino Gallery is presenting the 11th Annual Day of the Dead Show September 28-October 22nd. I have participated in this invitational group show for more years than I remember and it is one of my favorites. I always create found object art and this year I’m excited to share three special pieces. The inspiration is the assemblage piece I created last December for an invitational show at the Salem Public Library. Everything Accounted For  was created as a response to the book titled Spare Parts, about four Hispanic high school students who entered an underwater robot competition and created their robot using spare parts. After reading the book and thinking about all of my spare parts, I created my piece; it is now hanging in our living room.

For the 2017 Dead of the Dead show I decided to replicate my bigger piece and I created three smaller pieces modeled after my 2016 show piece.

“The Accumulation of Years,” by Dayna J. Collins.


“A Life’s History,” by Dayna J. Collins.


“A Maze of Memories,” by Dayna J. Collins.


When I created my DOTD pieces, I packed them full with a wild assortment of my favorite small bits.

I also created two other assemblage pieces for the Guardino Gallery show.

“The Emptiness of the House,” assemblage piece by Dayna J. Collins.


“Little Need of Conversation,” assemblage piece by Dayna J. Collins.


The opening reception for the show is Thursday, September 28th, 6-9 pm. And it ALWAYS a good party.




Waterlines: The Opening Reception

Last night was the opening reception for my Waterlines show at Guardino Gallery. It was a magical evening with a steady flow of people stopping by to see my show in the Feature Gallery and Mar’s show in the Main Gallery. Words? Not so much. But photos? Yes, please.

Guardino Gallery is located at 2939 NE Alberta and the show runs through May 21.

10th Annual Day of the Dead Show at Guardino Gallery


For ten years, Guardino Gallery in NE Portland has hosted a dia de los muertos group art show. I’ve participated in many of the shows over the past ten years. This year the show moved to the Main Gallery and features over 50 artists. The show, curated by Donna Guardino and Stephanie Brockway, runs through October 23, so if you’re in Portland, I hope you’ll swing by and see an amazing show.
















THE PARTY (I mean, opening reception)










BONUS: Preparing

Make up done by our daughter, Amy Kayon.








EVOKE: The Opening Reception

Opening (50)

My show opened Thursday night at Guardino Gallery in NE Portland. It was a hot night, but that didn’t keep people away. There was a steady stream of friends and art lovers. No need for words, I’ll just share a series of photos from the evening.


Opening (53)












Opening  (2)

Opening  (5)

Opening (2)


Opening (11)

Opening (12)

Opening (15)

Opening (17)

Opening (16)

Opening (21)

Opening (25)

Opening (24)

Opening (28)

Opening (31)

Opening (36)

Opening (37)

Opening (41)

Opening (48)

EVOKE: The Hanging of the Show

Hanging (21)

As many of you know, I’ve been working on pieces of art for my upcoming show at Guardino Gallery on NE Alberta in Portland. I started work last October and finished the final piece last Monday. Wednesday was hanging day. My good friend Tory Brokenshire drove her van and helped with the hanging.

Hanging (18)

We arrived at 11:00 am and unloaded 31 pieces of art into the empty, white-walled Main Gallery. Donna is a master curator and directed us to take pieces here and there, auditioning the possibilities.

Hanging (15)

Hanging (17)

Hanging (16)

Hanging (4)

Hanging (9)

And then it was time to hang. Tory and Meg took over.

Hanging (11)

Hanging (23)

Hanging (27)

For the most part, they did an excellent job.

Hanging (32)

I acted as their assistant, handing them drills, tape measures, and screws, occasionally offering suggestions.

Hanging (3)

Hanging (8)

Hanging (6)The 3-D artist, who is also in the Main Gallery with me, Tamae Frame, was able to place her beautiful sculptures once my paintings were hung. What a beautiful pairing.

Hanging (26)

Hanging (24)

Hanging (38)

Hanging (36)

Hanging (25)

Hanging (31)

Hanging (42)

Hanging (40)

Hanging (30)

Hanging (41)

Hanging (43)I’m so grateful to Donna for the opportunity to have the show and to Tory for helping to get it hung.

Hanging (5)

Hanging (44)


New Show: Entering the Final Stretch

IMG_1580The title has been chosen. EVOKE

Thank you everyone who responded as to whether I should title the show EVOKE or RESONATE.

IMG_1596The Artist Statement has been written.

It has been sent to Donna at Guardino Gallery.

IMG_1509The initial photos for publicity have been taken.

Thank you, Tory.

IMG_1623All that remains is to continue working.

I’ve been spending a lot of time in my studio.

IMG_1591And adding layers of paint.

I bought new paint over the weekend.

IMG_1509And then do a final coat of wax.

Not quite ready to do this.

IMG_1626And remember to sleep.



The opening reception will be Thursday, May 28, 6-9 pm. But I’ll write more about that when it gets a bit closer.

Day of the Dead – 8th Annual Group Show

Outside Guardino Gallery looking into the Feature Area.
Outside Guardino Gallery looking into the Feature Area.

Last Thursday night was Guardino Gallery’s 8th Annual Day of the Dead opening reception. Attending Last Thursday on Alberta is always fun, but Guardino’s openings are even better, especially when the guests dress up in celebration of Dia De Los Muertos.

Stephanie, the curator, with me
Stephanie, the curator, with me


Me with my date
Me with my date
Tory and Stephanie
Tory and Stephanie
Stephanie and Alea
Stephanie and Alea
Celebration guests
Celebration guests
Donna Guardino with Howard
Donna Guardino with Howard
Howard, Tabor, Lee, and Jason
Howard, Tabor, Lee, and Jason
Peeking in the window
Peeking in the window

I created several assemblage pieces for the show.

"In the Dark Room"
“In the Dark Room”
"Deep Dark Secret"
“Deep Dark Secret”
"Travel Weary"
“Travel Weary”
"Abrupt Departure"
“Abrupt Departure”
"A Steady Quiet Routine"
“A Steady Quiet Routine”
"Casual Indifference"
“Casual Indifference”
"Missing Person"
“Missing Person”
"Writing Down Numbers"
“Writing Down Numbers”
"It Belonged To a Stranger"
“It Belonged To a Stranger”
"Things in Common"
“Things in Common”
"It Didn't Matter"
“It Didn’t Matter”
"Waiting For An Excuse"
“Waiting For An Excuse”

The show runs through October 26. Guardino Gallery is located at 2939 NE Alberta in Portland, OR.