Sunday, July 31, 2011

Peter Scherrer / Andrea Pinheiro & Dan Siney

Peter Scherrer, Orange Owl, 2011, oil on canvas, 48 x 66 inches
image via SEASON

I just can't quit thinking about these paintings by Peter Scherrer since I first saw them at SEASON a while back. They're up for a while, so if you want to check them out you can schedule an appointment here.

image via SEASON

by Andrea Pinheiro and Dan Siney, image via gallery

I think they'd make a beautiful pairing with work by artists Andrea Pinheiro and Dan Siney, who are showing at Violet Strays (a virtual gallery with no archive).

by Andrea Pinheiro and Dan Siney, image via gallery

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Grizzly Adams

More bears with bears? Okay!

My favorite part of The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams was always when he risked his life to save Ben; it just seemed such a romantic notion. Also, the idea of having a bear as a best friend seemed delightful to the 7 year old me. The amazing theme song, Maybe, was sung by Thom Pace and went all the way to number 1 in Europe (that may or may not be true, there's no citation to support it. But even without the citation, it should be true - at least if we live in a just world.) Listen to the test marketing they did for this.
In a 1978 interview with TV Guide, Sellier said that the company used extensive market testing to produce the series, which was based on tests showing that audiences liked stories about men and animals in the wilderness; that bears were favorite wilderness animals; and that grizzlies were the favorite type of bear. via
I wonder if they also test-marketed the underlying thread of gay love. In one of the movies, a little boy asks Adams about his relationship with his "bloodbrother" Nakoma and Adams explains by saying, "We're two living things that feel as one." Even then, I remember thinking, I knew it - they love each other!

Look at his face - that's pure falcon joy he's experiencing! How can you not love this show?!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

FLORA/FAUNA at Smith and Vallee Gallery

Karen Hackenberg, “Forbearance,” Oil on canvas, 36”x72”
image via gallery

My favorite gallery in Edison, Washington will be having a reception on August 6th. Smith and Vallee presents FLORA/FAUNA, "Moving beyond standard wildlife tableaux, this exhibition also explores the human impact and relationship with nature." The scenic drive up to Skagit Valley is perfect for a sunny Saturday.
Smith and Vallee
Saturday, Aug 5

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Windfall Alphabet / Gretchen Bennett

image via Publication Studio

I'm super excited for this Thursday because Gretchen Bennett will be giving a walking tour/talk of her current installations at SAM's Olympic Sculpture Park. It will also be the launch for her book Windfall Alphabet, published by Publication Studio.

images via artist Gretchen Bennett

If you haven't been down to see the works yet, this would be a great time to visit because some folks have had a little difficulty locating all three pieces. I think it's the glass float that eludes people. Also, don't forget to check out the other installations by Nicholas Nyland and Carolina Silva.

If interested, meet in the PACCAR Pavilion at 6:30.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

"Turn my pain into glitter."

"Turn my pain into glitter.", 2011 by Joey Veltkamp

Someone recently remarked to me that it was good to see me out again. I didn't realize I had been that bad about getting out but when I think back, I have been pretty dang reclusive in 2011. Especially in comparison to the whirlwind year of 201o. While there's always a high level of guilt in withdrawing, it can be the best thing for us at times. There are uncountable perks to being an artist but it can also be an odd life. While many partners might be understanding of lots of late hours due to a launch at work, fewer are willing to give the same degree of latitude to an artist preparing for a show. So in some ways, depending on your studio practice, the life of an artist naturally leans towards isolation. I'm okay with that. I couldn't stand to be alone for about the first 20 years of my life and sometimes I wonder if I might have overdosed on socialization.


Anyway, my 7 months of isolation haven't been in vain. I've been fighting in the studio. As a pretty new artist, it was the first long-term struggle I've had. And if you look around the studio, the fight's been epic. Lots of paint smeared walls, broken canvases, and empty beer cans. I'll be honest - paint was really winning the battle the first couple of months but about a month or two, things started turning around in my favor. Here's one of the early completed paintings. I'll write about these once things start to resolve but for now, here's an excerpt from an essay by Matt Offenbacher about them for an upcoming SOIL book.
When we think of an enthusiast these days, we think of someone who “loves too much”, or who refuses to “face up to reality.” However, enthusiasts like Joey (like me!) know that enthusiasm is really pragmatic and ethical. It comes from trying to reconcile what is inside with what is outside, in a manner that brings the most good into the world.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Residence / Valley and Taylor

entrance to Valley and Taylor

This Saturday, Tim Cross is opening up his house for a night only show of work by 5 (currently) local artists.
Residence is a chain-link invitational, so to speak, with each artist inviting another artist of their choice to participate in the project. The artists: Tim Cross, Chauney Peck, Chris Engman, Rumi Koshinko and Jason Hirata, were offered the house and all its contents to be used however they wish.
Roses, 2011 by Timothy Cross, 34"x 42"
ink, oil and acrylic on UV print on canvas

From 5-10pm, come see what they did to the place. This is also a going-away party for 2 of the artists, Chauney Peck and Chris Engman, who are relocating to the sunny weather of Los Angeles in the morning. Happy/sad.
Opening/Closing Party
July 30th 5-10 pm
522 Valley St. Seattle WA. 98109
viewings by appointment thru August
More info here.

(This post was edited.)

Pottery Northwest Salad Bowl 2011

Platters by Rustam Usmanov, Joey Veltkamp, Ann Gardner

On Wednesday, Aug 3rd, Pottery Northwest will host their annual Salad Bowl. Running a pottery center is expensive and class tuition only covers 75% of costs. Your attendance at their annual fundraiser is what makes up the difference. It's a fun, casual event held midweek so as not to disrupt your social calendar. Pottery students, residents and outside artists have been busily painting 200 salad bowls - each attendee goes home with one. Maybe you'll get one of Margie Livingston's drip bowls. Or Kiki MacInnis' beat bowl. Or my Pabst bowl. And then you can fill it with yummy salads and desserts from local chefs and restaurants.

There will also be some platters and other auction items up for sale. Look at that platter by Rustam Usmanov (visiting from Rishtan, Uzbekistan, along with his son, Damir)! I can't wait to see the platters by George Rodriguez and Alfred Harris.
They've set up a semi-permanent gallery in the front that's always showcasing great work by current residents or students.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Amanda Manitach / Mad Homes

photo by Amanda Manitach

I finally got to swing by Mad Homes today when they were open (now through Aug 7). I just might be the very last person in Seattle to write about this so I don't really have much to add. I had a surprise favorite in Amanda Manitach's installation of 4 projectors which flash random words from 19th century texts onto a blank wall. There was something hypnotic about being in this room. Which makes perfect sense since one of Amanda's goals was, "tampering with rhythmic time, duration...[to create] states of reverie." For me, the surprise came from how different this piece is from all of the others; where most focused on physical space, Amanda continues to explore the fertile ground of mental/emotional space.

In the studio with Harold Hollingsworth

by Harold Hollingsworth

I just love studio visits. Having folks come over to my studio or getting the chance to check out someone else's is, hands down, one of my favorite things about being an artist. I only wish there was more time to do even more visits.

Yesterday, I got the chance to spend the afternoon with Harold Hollingsworth chatting about art in general and more specifically, some new directions he's going with his own work. A good studio visit always leaves me feeling energized and hungry to make art.

Claire Johnson / Studio Sale

Leaving Bozeman, 2009 by Claire Johnson

Save the date because one of Seattle's finest is having a studio sale next Sunday, July 31st. Artist Claire Johnson will be selling some of her "tree drawings, tree portraits, road trip paintings, watercolors and figurative work."

I think I first fell in love with Claire's work when I saw her Leaving Bozeman show, composed of intimate paintings of snapshots taken on a road trip. The images felt tender and full of longing.

Leschi, 2010 by Claire Johnson

A lot of Claire's work triggers a touch of sadness for me; aerial photos with tiny roads, desolate highways, and empty streets. By excluding people, she leaves a lot of room for the viewer to add their own meaning. From an early age, I was shuttled between Bozeman and Spokane and began to associate travel with loss. (Hopefully, you were a more adventurous kid and enjoyed plane rides.)

Mountain Road, 2008 by Claire Johnson

Anyway, Claire's afternoon studio sale will be a fun time because Claire's such a great person. Stop by for chai tea, meet her cool cats, and pick up some awesome new art.
Claire Johnson's Big Fat Studio Sale!
Sunday, July 31 · 2:00pm - 6:00pm
Artspace Hiawatha Lofts
843 Hiawatha Pl. S, Apt 210
More details here.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Rest in peace, Lucian Freud

Naked Man, Back View, 1991–92 by Lucian Freud
image via

Oh, this is a huge loss. The New York Times has reported that British painter Lucian Freud has passed away at the age of 88. His unapologetic presentation of the human body has always been a huge source of inspiration for me. As my interest in thick, fleshy surfaces continues to increase, Freud was someone who's been on my mind more and more lately.

Nude with Leg Up (Leigh Bowery), 1992 by Lucian Freud
image via

My favorite works by Freud have always been the Leigh Bowery portraits.
Bowery is a character out of Renaissance art - perhaps Silenus, the companion of Dionysus. His flesh is a magnificent ruin, at once damaged and riotously alive. Who knew skin was so particoloured? To count the hues of even one of his feet is impossible: purple, grey, yellow, brown, the paint creamy, calloused, bulging. In a velvet chair tilted down towards us on the raked stage of the wooden studio floor, his mass looms up and dwarfs us. Walk close your eyes are probably the height of his penis. Bowery's violet-domed, wrinkly tube hangs between thighs marked with sinister spots or cuts his knees are massive. Bowery is a painted monument who quietly contemplates his existence inside this flesh. - Jonathan Jones / The Guardian

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Divided $elf / Matthew Offenbacher

Ke$ha zine, ink on paper
1 of 2 pages, 8.4x14”, 2011

Got plans this Wednesday? That totally sucks because Matt Offenbacher's having a one night only show at Vignettes and it's going to be awesome! I hope things devolve into a glitterific dance party! 7-1opm / more info

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hankblog / David Herbert

As I struggle to keep my own blog up to date lately, it sure makes me appreciate those folks who can post daily and keep their blog fresh! Nothing kills your hard-earned readership faster than infrequent posting.

Just in case you haven't noticed, Hankblog (Henry Art Gallery) has been doing an amazing job of posting daily for a while now. It's been one of my favorite to check out, and not just because they were sweet enough to let me draw their current blog header. The Henry is one of those organizations that has so much going on that it can be hard to keep track of it all. Check out the blog frequently to sort it all out.

David Herbert. Holy Mountain. 2011. Digital collage.
Courtesy of the artist and Postmasters Gallery, New York.
via Henry Art Gallery

Speaking of the Henry, I'm seriously trying to not to lose my shit over their upcoming exhibition, David Herbert and the Mystery of the Holy Mountain.
Seattle native David Herbert utilizes everyday materials, including Styrofoam, PVC pipes, and Scotch Tape, to create eccentric sculptural installations of iconic subjects. During a two-week open studio at the Henry, Herbert will build a new installation specific the Puget Sound region. A recreation of Mount Rainer will sit atop of a rough skeletal framework modeled after the alien ship from the film Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
It's one of those things that on paper sounds like it could be one of my favorite things this year. I don't know what it is about the mountains this year in our region but they've been especially inspiring. Just in these past couple of months, I've seen Mt. Rainier in work by Claire Johnson, Gretchen Bennett, Vic Haven, let alone all the previous work inspired by this mysterious mountain. It keeps coming up lately; I hope that's not a portent that it's finally gonna blow (or lift off like a giant spaceship)!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Summerfest / Thorp, Washington

If you love good, ol' fashioned fun, make sure you head over to Thorp, Washington during the weekend of August 5, 6 and 7th for their annual Summerfest! For two days (and a limited breakfast on Sunday for those who stay over) you'll enjoy art, music, beer, floating the river, studio tours, and good times.
As PUNCH Gallery describes it, "It's a casual affair ... think of it as a three-day party with your artsy, yet hillbilly, cousins on the farm."
If you want to float the river (and who wouldn't want to float it?), you have to sign up by July 25th so they can make arrangements. "The cost for the river float is $20 which includes the raft, transportation up the river, life vest, and paddles. R.S.V.P. and prepayment is required." PUNCH (and the other Thorp artists) are some of the nicest, most hospitable folks around and this will be a blast!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Artist talk @ SOIL today at 2pm

by Derrick Jefferies

I know it's late notice but I highly recommend today's SOIL talk at 2pm.
Defornament presents three artists whose work address corporeality, ornamentation, and transformation of commonplace into the extra-ordinary. Objects and images shift into visual uncertainty and liminality through cloaking, cropping, layering and piling, the familiar becoming unrecognizable.

Derrick Jefferies’ new photographic and sculptural works are inspired by luxe forms found in the mineral world, appropriating readily found materials to create semi-precious knock-offs. Amanda Manitach’s new installation of drawings emphasize rhythmic blotting and an interruption of rocaille excess. Ellen Garvens’ photographic treatments use isolation and an absence of the total figure to meditate on the sensuousness of the ordinary. Derfornament explores the space between material reality and illusion, repulsion and attraction, clarity and obscurity.
Derrick, Amanda and Ellen have been working like crazy to make this work and it's super amazing. I can't wait to hear their thoughts behind it all, starting with the awesome title Defornament. Also, this will be Derrick's last Seattle show before he heads out to Slade. Amanda and Derrick are also this month's artists for LxWxH.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Joe Park & Kimberly Trowbridge

A pair of my favorite Seattle artists are featured on New American Paintings/Blog right now.

Princess, 2011 by Joe Park, oil on panel, 20 x 24 inches
Seattle artist Joe Park recently walked me through his studio before he shipped out his latest show to Rena Bransten Gallery in San Francisco. The title, This is Prizmism, is a sly nod to the art world’s predilection to create more and more schools of -isms. Originally inspired by a J.G. Ballard story, Park has been developing his prizmism style for the past couple of years. Hallmarks are fractal, geometric explosions of light which create a crystalline cubism. —Joey Veltkamp
Read more here. Joe's show at Rena Bransten opens up July 21st.

The Gift Horse, 2011 by Kimberly Trowbridge, oil on canvas. 48 x 60 inches
Kimberly Trowbridge completed the massive oil painting Last Days of Summer before Seattle’s brief weeks of warm weather began. Working in the Pacific Northwest, it’s not surprising that a vibrant green dominates this and other works in her 2009-2010 Arcadia series of nude figures embedded in lush landscapes. While the artist’s tangible surroundings subtly factor into the work through color and form, real time, places and people are absent; instead both her paintings and studio construct unconventional utopias that only hint at ordinary existence. —Erin Langner
Here's the complete post.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Alterations / Vignettes

Vignettes will be presenting a one night only showing of new work by Shaun Kardinal and Erin Frost called Alterations.
There was a time when we created;
Now, we alter.
Erin, trained and experienced in photography,
Destroys, combines and reconstructs her prints, while
Shaun, obsessively compelled by order,
Embroiders shapes and patterns on vintage cards.
Together, connected and cohabited,
A third dimension is revealed.
If you still haven't been to Vignettes, this would be a great show to check out.

Monday, July 4, 2011

random photos

Bachelor Party / Photo by Trippe (via Fecal Face)

I'm finally starting to feel better. But I've missed just about every art thing from the past 3 weeks. The plus side is I've had lots of time to draw (and watch bad tv).

Photo: Zebulon Zang (Maillardville, BC)

These are some awesomely weird pictures I saw on Fecal Face.