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Koss Art Gallery Sheds Light on Local Area Creativity
By Ashley Steyaert

Tucked behind the hustle-bustle of vacationing beach goers, at the end of two rows of palm trees outlining an aisle fit for a seaside wedding, the Jaime Koss Art Gallery stands bold and proud as one of the little-known cultural highlights of Samara Beach. The man behind the gallery, and the creator of the art that brings it to life is the long-time local resident affectionately known as Don Jaime. The 65-year-old visionary can be found diligently shoveling sand in front of his property upward against the effects of the tide on any given morning, leisurely clad in brightly colored swim trunks, a short sleeved (if any) button-up shirt and his signature Little Mermaid baseball cap.

Koss, born and raised in Costa Rica’s central valley, has lived in Samara on and off for the past 40 years and is a living testament to the inspiring and rejuvenating benefits of life in the small beach town. That’s not to say that he hasn’t had a taste of life in the fast lane; After studying and teaching university level Chemistry here in Costa Rica, Koss later spent decades living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area of California as a graphic designer, educator and chemist. However, years later Don Jaime now reflects “with the changes of age I find myself more comfortable working in the studio”, an off kilter, open-air wooden structure overlooking Samara Bay with a clear view of Chora Island as his backdrop.

Koss’s artwork exhibits the creative outlet of a man who sees himself, and all other artists as people simply “trying to make sense of ourselves”. Oil and canvas come together to fuse a work of art as bold and bright as the man who created it, exclaiming “any creative process allows for alchemy of transformation”. Tell tale signs of a Koss masterpiece include striking contrasts of deep crimson and indigo against brazen lines yellow and orange, feminine figures and musical undertones. He characterizes his most recent series as a “point of synthesis and simplicity” featuring several “maritime constellation ladies” dancing about the canvas. Although these and other traits are typical to his work, the artist discloses that he “tries to challenge [him]self to do each painting differently”.

The Jaime Koss Art Gallery usually features between 50-70 paintings at a time and is open to the public everyday during high season. Koss works with three sizes of canvas: small for $90, medium for $160 and large for $250. He announces “people are welcome to come and explore the gallery” and expresses his gratitude “for keeping my gallery alive…this gallery is a jumping miracle”.

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Danish Electro-Pop Icons, the Fagget Fairys, come to Nosara to get away from it all

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Our hometown of Nosara is quickly becoming a global sanctuary not only to those seeking a spiritual or holistic health path, but an emotional, physical and spiritual retreat from celebrity life. More >

Reed Foehl and Jefferson Hamer brings country folk songcraft to Nosara

From the mountains of Colorado to the sands of Nosara, singer songwriter Reed Foehl dazzled audiences here recently with his smooth country-folk melodies. Although this was his first trip to Costa Rica, his mellow stylings, accompanied by Jefferson Hamer, were well suited for the tranquilo beach vibe here.

Performing songs from his three CDs, with many crowd favorites and requests, Foehl’s songwriting style demonstrated solid melodies, and a storytelling style that put him in league with his influences, including John Prine, Neil Young and the Grateful Dead. More >

Samara Welcomes Tatiana Lobo to 2010 International Book Fair and Film Festival

This January Samara’s Intercultura Language School joins forces with “Libros Pregonario” for the 4th annual International Book Fair and Film Festival to exhibit Latin American literature and film to the public. Beginning on January 18th the school extends a open invitation to discuss, purchase and exchange a wide variety of books in both Spanish and English. More >


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Recipe Thieves – Beware talented local chefs – your secrets are no longer safe!

This month’s victim: Jairo Cordero Hernandez, Kitchen Leader of Harmony Hotel Restaurant. Jairo, born and raised in Nosara, started off as a dishwasher at Harmony Hotel Restaurant over 3 years ago. And for 2 years now, he is one of two Kitchen Leaders at this world-class establishment. He shares this role with another Nosara local, Yuliana, who is one of the few female top chefs in Guanacaste. More >


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