FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Jason Oberman has always been fascinated with painting people and animals. But a 20-year military career led him away from pursuing his passion, until he retired.


The Coconino Community College student is finally making a run of becoming a professional artist. Oberman's artwork, titled "Forevermore" was recently selected as the signature art piece in Coconino Community College's 12th annual Palette to Palate signature fundraising event.


"Forevermore" will be auctioned at the event. Proceeds from Palette to Palate benefit the College's Fine Arts Department. Money raised assists Fine Arts students with travel, scholarships and equipment.


Palette to Palate is from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday, April 25 in the V. Philip Tullar Commons, CCC Lone Tree campus. The evening consists of great food from some of the best restaurants in Flagstaff, silent and live art auctions and entertainment by CCC Fine Arts students.


Ticket prices are $40 for general admission, $70 for couples, and $30 for students. The annual fundraising event is truly one of Flagstaff's signature art events and has grown over the years, thanks to great community participation and support to keep Northern Arizona's arts community vibrant. This event will feature heavy hot and cold hors d'oeuvres, gourmet desserts and beverages.


Attending restaurants include: Artisan's Kitchen, Campus Coffee Bean, Coppa Café and Bistro, Cottage Place, El Capitan Fresh Mexican Grill, Josephine's Modern American Bistro, Main Street Catering, Pita Jungle, Satchmo’s, Simply Delicious and Café Daily Fare, The Sweet Shoppe and Nut House, Tinderbox Kitchen, Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort and Western Gold at the Little America Hotel.

 

Every year, the Palette to Palate signature art piece is a CCC student's work, chosen by a committee art faculty and CCC staff.


Oberman, this year's signature artist, retired from the Army and knew he wanted to pursue a quality arts education. Originally from Alaska, he looked for someplace with a dry climate, high altitude, but not the extreme cold or dampness where he grew up.


He chose Flagstaff and has been tremendously pleased with the education he's received so far.


"My experience at CCC has been phenomenal," Oberman said. "Throughout my military career, I had the opportunity to work with all different kinds of instructors. Here at CCC, I've found real mentors."


The concept for "Forevermore" started in CCC instructor Elaine Dillingham's painting I class in fall 2013. After several revisions, Oberman's finished version of two ravens on top of a candlelit table with wine and cheese was completed in CCC instructor Jim Schroeder's Painting II class this spring. It is an acrylic painting on canvas.


"I hope that at its heart, people see that it's a romantic picture," Oberman said. Using ravens, the artist said he knew it would conjure images of Edgar Allen Poe and his famous poem, "The Raven."


"I'm not a huge Poe fan, but I adore ravens and thought it would be cool if they were involved," Oberman said. "I'm just very honored to be selected and hope people enjoy the work. It definitely has a degree of mystery to it."


For tickets to the event, contact CCC's Marketing and Events Coordinator, Ashley Gillum at 928-226-4312 or ashley.gillum@coconino.edu.

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