Monday, October 31, 2005

Can I borrow some money?


Mmmmm, lots of yummy art to buy at the AAF Contemporary Art Fair (which makes it the Affordable Art Fair Contemporary Art Fair?) I don't frequent this events, but they are becoming a little hard to avoid, and an inherent part of looking at art. I enjoyed being able to see works from a variety of regions (nyc, sf, la, new orleans, portland, kansas city, montreal, toronto, etc.) all under one roof (albeit a bit cavernous).
I attended thanks to the generosity of our friends at Hang, who brought a huge diverse display of works to fill their large booth. They included such works as Yvette Molina's beautiful and spare works on metal, and Jeff Loehman's sensual burned paper works. I really wanted to take home the entire PDX booth, the highlight of which was Ellen George's acrylic resin tidbits, small organic pieces of happiness, which resonated with whimsy. I also always love Bean Finneran's spiky and colorful accumulations of ceramic pieces into geometric forms.
I also drooled just a little over the ceramic fungal pieces by Joy Hought at Lola Gallery, and the Doug Moulden layers of acrylic to create deep green and blue images of trees and roots, that the Ch'i people shared with me. Annie Chung's sand paper pieces were much smaller and more intimate than I expected (at Steven Wolf), and Allie Rex's paper cutouts and Laura Sharp Wilson's fantastical plants were pleasant surprises at Byron C Cohen Gallery.
The best part of the fair was that everyone was really really friendly, and willing to talk about the work and show more work. It certainly makes it easy to be interested in buying...
Most of the research that I had done prior to attending proved itself out at the fair, there were relatively few surprises, and a lot of fun and beautiful work. Of course, given the venue you aren't really going to see much that is challenging or different. I do hope that there isn't too much of a turn towards the fairs as the seminal art venue, I think we would lose a tremendous amount of risk and experimentation which occurs in the gallery venue.
Having said that, there is a strong need to "take back" the art world, so after I get this show installed, I will start working to put together a Budget Gallery for NYC!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Fevers and Fall

Fall has come in spades, its been cold here, and I am still trying to figure out how to dress for it (still stuck in SF mentality). One key piece of the dressing correctly is that I am anxiously (understatement) waiting for Matt & Nat to deliver their wonderful Trinity boots to Moo Shoes, which would help enlarge my wardrobe choices. Enough about that.

So its fall, and the work on the pieces for the Roshambo show have reached a fevered pitch. The felted balls keep multiplying (I will post a photo a little later). I am having back, hand and shoulder pains from the work. I also ordered some plexi to do sandwich frames for the eccentric drawings.

I am also looking forward to visiting the Affordable Art Fair and checking out some of the following galleries at the fair: Julie Baker Fine Art, George Billis (he shows my friends Josh Dorman and Carol Es), Gallery 16, Jennifer Kostiuk, Joie Lassiter, The Lola Gallery (why did you email me and then never write back?), PDX, Pentimenti, Rudolph Projects, Andrea Schwartz, Steven Wolf, and Yoo Projects (who show some of my favorites, like Chris Natrop - fabulous intricate paper cuttings, Susannah Bettag - lucious candy colored thickly resined imagery of sadness and play, and Andrew Schoultz - my favorite muralist, reachly detailed images of nature and culture gone awry).

Sunday, October 23, 2005

A good day to be inside

I spent all day Saturday inside in an uncomfortable auditorium. The floor was slanted forward, and the seats not quite straight, so I felt like I had to hold myself up the whole time. By the end of the day my knees hurt. But thats the bad part. The good part is that it was raining, windy and cold anyway (welcome Fall!) so I wouldn't have wanted to be outside, and the people I was listening too were wonderful and full of motivation and great stories!

It was all part of the NYFA "Full-Time Business of Art" workshop. It was a day long workshop with lectures on "Networking", "Financial Planning" and a panel of curators. The day started with the fabulous and energetic Jackie Battenfield. She had us all laughing and introducing ourselves to each other with her talk on the importance of networking. It all boiled down to something like "Hey, you never know!" She certainly got me thinking, got my butt in gear and finally made new business cards (we've only been here 4 months!). She was followed by an interesting take on financial planning - a holistic approach. It was a mix of new age thinking and financial planning. If there is an outcry for more information I will post some of the information from the packet. Suffice it to say it has to do with feeling abundant.

I missed the end of it because I had my "Doctor's Hours" with Melissa Potter (Senior Program Director for NYFA Source) who reviewed my slides. She gave some great feedback, very honest. She actually pointed out that the slides don't need to just be in chronological order, but more importantly they should make visual sense. We also talked about the difficulty in showing installation work in the slide format. Gonna do CD's as often as possible! (Including the upcoming submission for Wave Hill). I also am scheduling a massive 2-day reshoot of all of my work so that the slides look more cohesive.

The final gathering was a curators panel, featuring Sara Reisman, a curatorial fellow at the New Museum (I wonder if they would like my work after I reshoot?), Louky Keijsers, who has her own gallery LMAKProjects. The final speaker on the panel was Olu Oguibe. The panel was all very interesting, but the most fulfilling was Olu, he was speaking to the fact that artists are far too reliant on curators and gallerists. We have ceded power to the middleman and the collectors, and given up our top of the pyramid. We are now the lowest in the hierarchy, which is exactly opposite of how he (and I) think it should be. He talked about taking it back, writing manifesto's staging our own shows, pretty much doing what we love doing and quit worrying about the commercial side, cultivate your own community and collector base. He joked afterwards that he felt like the preacher man. Amen to that!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

The sun will come out tomorrow...


We went outside after lots of rain, and wandered down to DUMBO for the Art under the Bridge Festival. It was a beautiful sunny warm day (with a nice cool breeze). We started the day with coffee and croissants (almond and pain au chocolat) followed by an eclair at the utterly fabulous Almondine. It was worth eating lots of chocoalate since it was from Jacques Torres. Easily the best pain au choc outside of France. Perfectly flakey as it should be with rich DARK choco inside (don't ever put milk choco in there - gross!).
From there we set off to see the ART. There was art in the parks, and the water, even falling from the bridge! Elise Pepple's beautiful performative piece involved dumping loads of colored leaves from the Manhattan bridge down onto the people below. The pictures below don't do justice, but they set the stage. It was a wonderful celebration of a much awaited season.















We enjoyed some of the more ambitious installation type works. Loved seeing the new Smack Mellon space. (Yummy. Can I make some stuff in there?) Then we walked down to the waterfront for ice cream from the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory. Highly recommend it, but not too much - its rich!
All in all a beautiful day in the sun (finally) with visual and gastronomous treats!

I forgot to mention that simultaneously (but from what I could tell, not actually connected to the Dumbo Fest) was a really wonderful photography exhibit. It was in a fancy tent in the gutted building near the BB park. The work was really overall quite stunning. I often find that the media of photography gets wrapped up in being interesting because the things in the photo are interesting. For my photo interest to be piqued, the photos themselves must be engaging and interesting in and of themselves. By and large this selection did that. Of special interest were the spare and beautiful works of Christian Erroi, who put the stark works behind 1 inch thick plexi adding another dimension to the works. Although it was interesting to see this work, I think I would have been a bit upset about having really expensively framed works shown in a tent over the course of 3 days of varying weather.

The writing on the wall


Caught the Creative Time showing of Jenny Holzer's work on the Public Library. It was dreary and raining, but interesting to just "happen" upon the work. They had a big truck with a projector in the back of it pointed on the library facade. They kept futzing with it making it jump up and down on the library, and the text movement wasn't as smooth as I think it was supposed to be. (The trouble with work relying on technology). There are some nice pictures of the work on Jenny Holzer's site. It works best straight on.
She also projected on other sites around the city (Rockefeller Center and NYU) and the text were poetry and declassified US government documents. All I could read on this was "You're talking politics even when you don't..."
I am glad to have Creative Time putting it all out there "in our faces" as it were.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Too many ideas, not enough time...

I imagine most artists have this problem... Too many ideas, not enough time. My work is very labor intensive so it can frequently take a long time to finish. Obviously during the production time lots of other ideas come up, I get them on paper but i would love to see more of them in reality (as opposed to only in my head) I wonder if there is any good solution to this. I am considering publishing "virtual works."

On a completely separate note, Rachael Whiteread's new work at the Tate (latest in an impressive series of works in Turbine Hall sponsored by Unilever) is arresting. With 14,000 white boxes she creates a miniature city - a little bit ghost town, a little bit fairy land. I can't wait to see it in person.

Gregory Lind won the arts lottery?

How is it possible that within the walls of a single gallery in San Francisco are all the most interesting (in my humble opinion) artists working in the area? (Excepting perhaps a few of those on my list of artists I like). Gregory Lind does however have the following: Sarah Bostwick, Sharon Englestein, Seth Koen, Christian Maychak, Amy Rathbone, Tucker Schwarz, and Jonathon Tucker among others.

It is refreshing to see such a stellar group of artists under one roof, definitely a gallery worth stopping in to see...

Of hope and despair...

I definitely should be making more of the felt balls since I didn't get as much done this weekend as I had hoped...

I have been thinking a lot about Monica Goetz's piece though... I am interested in the fact that it crosses so many boundaries. It appears to be such a simple piece, a gash in the wall from which light is emitted. But if you consider it for even a moment, you realize that there would have been quite a lot of work put into this installation. It also crosses the borders of sculpture, installation and two-dimensional work. It moves between construction and destruction, and between the original thoughts that I had - the dichotomy of hope and despair. The destruction represents such a negative and brutal act, and yet it reveals the light - that which represents hope...

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Chelsea wrap-up

I didn't get to see as much as I had hoped (missed the Laurie Anderson piece), since there is always more to do in the studio. I did get to the "New Found Land" show at Priska C. Juschka, some stand out pieces: Amy Rathbone's piece of holes in the wall and little sticks coming out from the wall producing multiple shadows. Falling away from the piece are these lovely little ink drawings of crescents (look like finger clippings or paper cut outs) which end in a pile at the floor. Tucker Schwarz created some intricate and lovely pieces of photos and threads, and a simple piece of multicolored threads strung like a web in the corner. Also of note Carolyn Salas' jewel toned soft sculptures of oases (is that the plural of oasis?).
Another show entitled "Mud" at Dinter Fine Art, featured works in ceramics, and a few works that looked like ceramics, but were in fact painted styrofoam. It begs the question of the difference between Craft and Fine Art (capitals mine)...





















Lynda Benglis at Cheim and Reid playing with form material and scale (that's why i have the picture with the person), these towering beauties live up to their name "The Graces". But their material (polyurethane) belies their visual weight.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Monica Goetz at James Nicholson gallery. A mark of light offers hope in destruction.

Works in Progress

So...this is my first blog entry. I have thought about doing it for a while, but, well things get in the way. So what I propose to do is use this for posting images of works and progress, as well as discuss my own work (as it develops and shows, feedback, etc). I will also use this as a forum for free form thinking, venting, ranting, complimenting, praising, whatever on the arts in general, and shows that I see, artists I like etc.
Today I am working on pieces for the Roshambo show. Thats a lot of wet felting (my hands are hating this) and tedious nylon thread wrapping of copper wire. But I am pretty happy with how things are looking. It does make me want to do LOTS more pieces with the little felt balls. Anyone want to be a sculptors assistant? Today is also the reception at RPS Collective in Oakland. Unfortunately I am in brooklyn, so hopefully some west coast friends will go see it, and enjoy the fun that is RPS openings.
Later I am going to see some of the Chelsea shows, I am acquainted with the curator of the show "New Found Land" at Priska C. Juschka which has gotten a lot of great press. It also has Amy Rathbone in it, and I love her work.
Hopefully I will work out the lack of digital camera so that I can post some images of the stuff I am working on. Donations always welcome.

You can't see much, but these are the works in progress for the roshambo show.

Some of the felted balls drying.