Saturday, December 29, 2012


Check out the latest issue of City Arts Magazine for a profile on my favorite taste-maker, Holly Hinton! Anything cool in my life probably came from Holly. She's the perfect date, the perfect hostess, and she never stops surprising us with her bag of tricks! If she says something is cool, I'd believe her. (Her response to "Place to party? T-Dock, Lake Washington", naturally.)

Christmas 2012 (of course Holly has a Santa suit)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

"My God, it's full of stars"

I love the line, "My God, it's full of stars!", from Arthur C. Clarke's book 2001: A Space Odyssey. It didn't make it into Kubrick's film but was included in the sequel 2010: The Year We Make Contact.

As I was working on the quilt, the round shapes became more and more planetary/star-like and this slowly developed. Instead of machine quilting it like The Great Northwest, I decided that I'd try to tie it together to mimic galaxies of stars so that the quilt would feel like it was full of stars. 

I don't know if I'll be doing that again anytime soon. It's takes about forever to hand-tie nearly 1,000 triple-knots and I'm an old grandpa. But the effect is sure worth it. It adds this weird sense of movement to the quilt. You can neatly arrange them for an ordered feel or even better is when they just lay naturally so it looks like some ancient form of calligraphy. (True story: the first quilt I received was from my aunt; a hand-tied Star Wars quilt which is the oldest possession I have...I'm sure it inspired my love of hand-tied quilts!)

This will be one of 4 quilts that I'll be showing (plus trying to make one or two new ones down in the space in a make-shift residency) for the upcoming The Camp Out series of exhibitions as part of the Storefronts project. I think the only hold-up right now is keys to the space. Hopefully, it will all work out and you can check it out (in the Smith Tower) next First Thursday (Jan 3, 2013). 

I like my quilts to have an A-side and B-side. The A-side is the side that's presented and the B-side is something related (though the Twin Peaks B-side could really be its own A-side). For this quilt, I thought the perfect back would be the monolith. I love how the back of the knots create an ordered field of stars. 

Sleep under this quilt for strange and beautiful dreams! Perfect for a cold & snowy night!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Kimberly Trowbridge's MASSIVE Studio Sale!

My dear friend Kimberly Trowbridge will clearing out her massive inventory of hundreds of works. If you want a Kimberly Trowbridge, there's never been a better time to get one! I've been a huge fan since first becoming aware of her work back in 2009. She's always pushing, pushing, pushing and it shows!

Kimberly frequently works large, so if you want to snap up some hefty paintings with paltry price tags, she's ready for you.
This is THE sale of the year, and NOT TO BE MISSED. A MASSIVE collection of paintings, drawings, and collages for sale, and VERY AFFORDABLE.

I have been hoarding my own work now for over 10 years, and I am FINALLY ready for YOU to have them all !! This will be a kind-of ten-year retrospective event for me, and the beginning of a new chapter.

Come flip though the HUNDREDS of works that line my walls, and make your selections! EVERYTHING GOES!!

There will be MANY works in the $50, $100, $200 range as well!!

Kimberly Trowbridge's Massive Studio Sale
Sunday, December 2nd
noon to 6pm

10420 3rd Avenue South
Seattle, WA 98168

Look for the Tall Green Hedge: 10420, park on the street or pull down the driveway, and park near the garage/ studio. Indigo colored studio facade.

Friday, November 23, 2012

buy local: a few studio sales

Connotation No. 29, 2012, by Shaun Kardinal
hand-embroidered paper collage, 11" x 11"
image via artist

There's a big push to buy local this year (always a great idea!)...Here are a couple of artists who are currently having sales, in case you're itching to spend money!

Shaun Kardinal's lovely embroidered postcards/paper collages are 15% off through Monday (DARKDAYS discount code). Check out available works here

Feldspar, 2012, by Ryan Molenkamp
archival giclee  print on paper, approx 15" x 15"
9 remaining out of edition of 20

Ryan Molenkamp is selling his prints of Devil's Tower, inspired by his Jentel Residency. $75 for the bigger ones and only $40 for the small ones. 

Joey Bates is having a studio sale of his intricate paper cuts, drawings and paintings. Going back seven years, there's lots of great pieces ranging from $40-$600.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Weekend Art

nail by Izzie Klingel

1-3:30pm today
Henry Art Gallery
Izzie Klingel's Psychic Nail Parlour
$5 nail

Need a new look for your hand? Get psychedelic this afternoon at Izzie Klingel's Psychic Nail Parlour, as part of the pop-up shop at The Henry.

by Ollie Glatzer  / photo by LxWxH

Tonight from 6-9pm
LxWxH(OS) - Open Spaces

Launch party for the "November issue of LxWxH (xOS) -"OpenSpaces". This issue of LxWxH is a collection of serene architecture, cantilevered landscapes, and cut-to-the-heart poetry; featuring original work by Serrah Russell, Ollie Glatzer, and hand-bound chap books by writer Alex Filson."

Mark Tobey's Eskimo Mask by Helmi Dagmar Juvonen
linocut with added color, 1954
image via Davidson Galleries

2pm Sunday
Frye Art Museum
lecture by Deputy Director Scott Lawrimore

Tucked away in the back corner of the Frye is a beautiful show about Northwest artist Helmi Junvonen. It (and many other things) will be discussed Sunday afternoon by Scott Lawrimore. 
Helmi Juvonen: Dispatches to You (R.S.V.P.)  is a love letter back to an exceptional artist devoted to her art and correspondence with friends and loves. It is also a response from a museum committed to finding fresh perspectives and contemporary relevance in its historical collection.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Favorite Art Projects / Henry Art Gallery

The Henry is opening up a fun, Northwest-y pop-up store tomorrow. It's full of beautiful handmade items by artists such as Mandy Greer, Nicholas Nyland, Eric Eley, Tony Sonnenberg, Izzie & Christian, Paul Komada, Robert Peterson, Curtis Steiner, myself, and more!

I love Curtis Steiner's Mitchell-bandanas. Robert Peterson's beaded baskets are gorgeous!

Izzie Klingels and Christian Peterson collaborated on a really cool, glow-in-the-dark Mt. Rainier print. Nicholas Nyland has some great candlestick holders.

Tony Sonnenberg and Nicholas Nyland are selling beautiful ceramic pieces. Paul Komada has a cool knit object. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. If you give holiday presents, you should definitely shop here first! And if you're feeling cold, buy my quilt! It's the first finished one I've done. 

The front side of the quilt is all business! A love letter to The Great Northwest. Forests full of owls, hirsute lumberjacks, secret compartments, bears, flannels, and more. 

The B-side of the quilt is all party!
I've heard the official launch is tomorrow. There's going to be an online site, too, for those of you who don't live in Seattle. Like Favorite Art Projects on Facebook to keep up-to-date on fun additions to the store.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Nicholas Nyland / Art in America

photo by Nicholas Nyland

Oh dang it - I meant to post this days ago. A hearty congrats to Nicholas Nyland on his recent review in Art in America. I loved this show at Prole Drift and I'm glad to see it getting some love. Also, here's a recent interview here did with Elise Richman for The Studio Visit. 

photo by Nicholas Nyland

Friday, November 9, 2012

Win free art from Artsyo!

Portal, Lyano by Juan Alonso-Rodriguez
Photograph, 11" x 14" (matted to 16" x 20")

Lots of you already know about this great, new online site to buy local art but for those of you who don't, I'd like to introduce you to Artsyo. Co-founded by Sarah Brooks and Stella Laurenzo, Artsyo's simple goal is to make " easy to find, enjoy and purchase art in & around your neighborhood." How great is that?

Connotation No. 38 by Shaun Kardinal
Mixed media, hand-embroidered paper collage
14" x 14" framed

Understanding that folks purchase art for many reasons--such as color, size, shape, price, media--they've developed a robust search function to quickly focus in on exactly what you want. Looking for a red painting shaped like a rectangle that's under $500? Okay, here you are.

To spread the great word about Artsyo, they're holding a cool contest but you have to enter by November 29th.
"The winner of the contest gets to choose any piece of original art worth up to $500 on Artsyo. We’ll buy it, frame it, and show up at your door for a little art-hanging party (kind of like the barn-raising parties of olden times, but classier and not as physically strenuous)."
To enter, you have two do 2 things: 
  1. Like Artsyo on Facebook
  2. Take a picture of your saddest wall and email it to by November 29th. Don’t forget to include a tear-jerking story (50 words or less) about why your wall needs art, and needs it bad.
Spooning for American, Grego Rachko
oil painting, 18" x 14"

But if you enter before next Friday (Nov 16), you'll be entered into a totally random drawing where one person will win a free piece of art valued at under $100. Pick from any of these works

Carbon Copy by Serrah Russell
Oil on found photograph, 8" x 8"

Even if you don't enter the contest, I'd recommend liking them on Facebook because they have lots of exciting things in the works. Also, holidays are coming up and if you're gonna buy stuff, why not buy local art?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Equality cake / Cupcake Royale

Image by Tracey Salazar

Holy cow! Marriage equality  has passed (or it's close enough that smart folks can safely predict it will pass) in Washington. As a gay man in my 20s, this day never seemed possible.  It's a hugely validating thing to finally be viewed as an equal. Like many gay men, I carry a lot of internalized gay shame but this is a huge step is resolving that. Thank you to every one who voted, phonebanked, canvased, or supported Ref. 74.

My dear pal Jody Hall wants to thank all of you this Friday with a free slice of equality cake. Stop by the Cupcake Royale on Capitol Hill this Friday at 3pm for your free slice of the world's largest rainbow cake shaped like Washington.. This is my favorite cake in the world (and the first one they made was for my 40th birthday this year)!!
"I was so hoping that Ref 74 would pass. I really want my son Truman to be able to say that his parents are  married. It matters.” - Jody Hall

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Light Therapy / True Love Art Gallery

If you're out and about for Blitz this Thursday, please swing by True Love Art Gallery. Chris Buening and I will be showing new work there in our show Light Therapy. True Love always has great receptions and this one will going on from 6-10. 

A day without lesbians is like a day without sunshine, 2012
colored pencil on archival paper

It's been kind of a rough year for both of us so we wanted a show that acknowledged that but didn't dwell on it. I think it's going to be a great show. I'll be showing new fabric drawings and debuting my camouflage ghosts.

Blue Bear, 2012
colored pencil on archival paper

Light Therapy / True Love Art Gallery
1525 Summit Avenue (between Pike & Pine)
Opening reception: Thursday, November 8

Monday, November 5, 2012

Patty Grazini / Curtis Steiner Gallery

This Saturday, Curtis Steiner Gallery will be showing a new body of Patty Grazini's highly detailed paper works (all of the work is made of paper, ephemera that she gathers on her travels). 
Deeply inspired by Paper and Historical research, Patty’s most recent work draws from the life and cultural setting of Elizabeth Lyska, a Russian giantess who became famous in the late 1880s. With historical accuracy and painstaking detail rendered entirely out of paper, Patty invites the viewer to explore the life of this uncommon celebrity.
by Patty Grazini
The centerpiece of the show is a 7'2" (life-sized) paper recreation of Elizabeth.
Life of a Giantess by Patty Grazini
November 10, reception at 7pm
Curtis Steiner Gallery
5349 Ballard Avenue NW

Friday, November 2, 2012

Affordable Art Fair Seattle

One thing about Seattle is that we sure do like our art to be affordable. While I'm optimistic that one day all of our billionaires (and even thousandaires) will become big-time collectors of local art, drive all of our prices up and Seattle will become the land of milk and honey for artists, it could be a while 'til that happens. So in the mean time, let's celebrate the fact that you can find amazing art in this town at great prices. 

We Were Made to Cross That Line, 2011, Susanna Bluhm
oil and acrylic on canvas, 40" x 40"

Next weekend, Seattle will be hosting Affordable Art Fair, a 4 day extravaganza of art and activities all housed in one location. And while the idea of what's "affordable" varies from city to city, their benchmark for exhibitors is that at least 50% of all work has to be under $5,000. Did that make you gulp a bit? Well, don't worry, remember this is Seattle so most galleries are going to have tons of work well below that. Even if you don't buy, it's kind of luxurious to have an art fair in Seattle where you can spend the day in one location looking at art trucked in from throughout the region.

Openwork Vase, 2012, by Nicholas Nyland
glazed earthenware, 20x14x13 inches

I asked Affordable Art Fair Seattle Director Jennifer Jacobs what sets Seattle apart from the the AAF events in other cities. 
Seattle has always been known as a center of innovation and creativity, and artistically, quite unique in our aesthetic approach to the world around us. We were thrilled to develop an Affordable Art Fair in Seattle that is uniquely Northwest – through the representation of galleries, programming and installations.
With over 50 exhibitors (folks like SEASON, PDX Contemporary, Blindfold Gallery, Platform Gallery), you're sure to find a ton of art that you're going to want to take home. I'd start at Prole Drift and snatch up these works by Susanna and Nicholas. Are you a first time fair-goer and not sure what to expect? Here's a handy guide for newbies.

# # #

Affordable Art Fair Seattle
Seattle Center Exhibition Hall
Thursday, Nov 8 - Sunday, Nov 11
Full details and admission prices can be found here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

American Hipster Presents / Seattle

In a world full of interesting people, I think my least favorite might just be the ones who still say, "I don't even own a tv!", as if they're so beyond it. There's not much tooth in that, especially since so many folks get most of their content from the internet. Case in point, American Hipster Presents is a great program of exclusive content created for specifically for YouTube. At its core, this series, " a collection of earnest portraits of creative people talking about and demonstrating their passions." in various cities through the U.S. such as Detroit, NYC, San Francisco, Austin and others. Typically filmed in a day by Seedwell, each episode is roughly 7 minutes long. 

I'm actually happy to hear that someone is reclaiming the word hipster. As co-founder Peter Furia says, "“We acknowledge that hipster has become a loaded—even pejorative—term, but we think that beyond the negative connotations and imagery, there is something there, namely groups of like-minded, creative and passionate people who are becoming tastemakers in many different segments of society.”

installation of KeseyPollock's fiberglass lamps
image by Bob Hallinen, The Anchorage Daily News

Last week, they launched American Hipster Presents Seattle, which focuses on five different people, places or things right here in our fair city. They started with a great profile on Rachel Marshall and her product Rachel's Ginger Beer (yum)! On Monday, they premiered a great episode on the buzz-worth art duo, KeseyPollock and their melting bodies. New episodes are released on Mondays. Next up, profiles on Linda Derschang, Marian Built, and the Bumbershoot programming team. 

Also, if you love the work that KeseyPollock are doing, you can help fund their current Kickstarter.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Say hello to Jeremy Mangan

Early this Spring, artist Jeremy Mangan and I did this interview. It was going to be published elsewhere but since Jeremy has an exciting show of new work opening this Thursday, I figured it would be the perfect chance to share this.

Visitation, 2012
16 x 12 inches, oil & acrylic on canvas
Joey Veltkamp: Your art seems to celebrate the spirit of the West but without localizing it. Or is that because it's not about a physical place but rather an attitude?

Jeremy Mangan: I was born in Seattle, grew up in Kent, WA. I get that a lot, questions about the West in my work, particularly the Midwest, and if I ever lived there. To me those plains, open spaces and vast horizons are more of an idea of "The West" in general than anything else. But they're also local—if not Western Washington then at least Eastern, like Ellensburg and beyond. And I have spent a good amount of time east of the Cascades—I lived in Ellensburg for a few years, and travel that way whenever I can to fly-fish. I've been through Montana, Idaho, Wyoming a few times, drove through South Dakota once... It's beautiful country and certainly left—continues to leave—an impression on me. Also, they're simply "landscape" in a basic, austere sense and create a wonderfully gorgeous yet melancholy/lonely setting for these characters that are the buildings. So it's not that I avoid localizing it. It's just been playing out as, like you say, more of a spirit, an idea. But I can see it jumping around in the future: becoming specific for awhile, then more general again. It's more about disposition.

Moon Lantern, 2012
9 x 12 inches, acrylic on panel
JV: Your work feels similarly out of time. Are you referencing a specific moment? Or are they intentionally fluid? 

JM: I like "out of time." I like that a lot. In my artist statement I mention "anachronism.". Ideally, they can't be placed. Yes, they reference the past—that's the easy one. But they could also be something you could go and see now, and I think, I hope, that they could also suggest something we might see later. I'm not sure why we might see them—they could be the result of some post-catastrophe necessity, or they could come about voluntarily and joyfully out of a spirit of curiosity and creativity.

Chicken Coop, 2012
12 x 16 inches, oil & acrylic on panel
JV: There seems to be an undercurrent of architecture running through the work. Where does that come from? 

JM: I'm not interested much in architecture, per se. I'm simply drawn to these types of wooden structures that are so prevalent in the rural American West, whether barns, mining compounds, grain elevators, etc. I love the idea that they're built purely for function, yet they're beautiful as a by-product, and maybe grow more beautiful as they slowly deteriorate. I love how they imply some sort of expansive, varied space within. So then when I exaggerate them and "overbuild" them as I like to say, that function comes into question? Why so many rooms? What are they all for? What is in them? There's some nice mystery there, a story of motivations and activities, which I find at once inviting and slightly haunting. Essentially, I feel that these particular types of structures are rich as formal images and rich with implications of content (if such a distinction can be made), and I'm able to push that and play with that as I build them myself on the 2-D surface. And they're really fun to build!

On a more personal level, I grew up around, and in, some barns like these, so I have experience with those spaces. They're incredible. Also, my dad is a home builder so I think that seeps in a little, too.

Good a place as any, 2012
12 x 24 inches, acrylic & oil on panel
JV: Some of the work has whispers of nostalgia (in a good way). Do you see it that way or am I just projecting? 

JM: Yes, I do see it that way. what I'm interested in is how the past seems to try to remain present, how it informs our present, and even how it informs us that we're not always (or even usually!) so clever and innovative and enlightened as we think. Plus, old stuff is cool. It's strange, haunting, beautiful. Haunting is a big one—I love the tension of beautiful yet haunting. 

Its Not Romantic if No Ones Watching, 2012
24 x 30 inches, oil on canvas

JV: The only time we see actual people, they're in the form of mustachioed men that you might find on historical wanted posters. I'm curious about them... 

JM: So far, those guys have always been real "Badmen" of the West, actual historical figures. To me those badmen symbolize the overlap of legend and fact of the American West. Most of the accounts of those guys have been wildly embellished, BUT in that hyperbole is a kernel of truth, and even that small kernel is amazing and compelling. Just like the reputation of the West as a whole: vast, beautiful, bountiful, unforgiving, extreme geographically, full of possibility, mystery, resources, danger, inhabited by individualistic, tough, courageous, industrious do-it-yourself types... It's a cliche, but again there's a kernel of truth. The West is actually like that, just not to that degree and not so simple... But it does have a personality. It IS different than other regions, the people here are here for a reason.

But, clearly, these guys are dead! So is the West dead? No, but some of it is, some of it's gone. Some of it we've obviously outright stripped or over-exploited, and some we've actually loved to death. And some we've recovered or are recovering! But mostly I think those guys represent a longing in ME personally for the West, both legend and actual. So they can be read as an elegy, a remembrance- not just for what may be lost or ruined, but for what is there now that is actively missed and longed for.

Every Effort Made to Preserve the Original Structure, 2011
30 x 40 inches, acrylic on panel

JV: The wry impracticality of your structures in paintings like Every Effort Made to Preserve the Original Structure are borderline absurd. Do you think of them as having a sense of humor?

JM: Yes. And "sense of humor" is what I'm going for, as opposed to "funny." So, again, tension: a hint of humor or whimsy against precariousness, vertigo, even outright danger.

I find that, in life, humor and poignancy often overlap, and I hope that some of my images contain that overlap. 

Congratulations, Canyon, 2012
52.5 x 69.5 inches, oil & acrylic on canvas
JV: I think that definitely comes through. In fact, it seems like many of your paintings read as petit celebrations about the little moments in life. A roaring camp fire, colorful pennants against a menacing sky, fireworks—they all feel very optimistic.

JM: I'm with you 100% on petit celebrations. Absolutely. As for optimism, yes, but very often a "deliberate" optimism- genuine and robust to be sure, but also partially as an act of the will to ward off the melancholy or isolation. The optimism "vies."

Dancefloor, 2011
18 x 24 inches, acrylic on panel
JV: Speaking of isolation, your work frequently depicts people coming together (in the form of multiple boats anchored around one pole, tents in a circle for protection, and your clusters of buildings). How community fit into your work?

JM: I think this goes back to optimism. That optimism is achieved, is realized in part by the dynamic of community. What better way to combat isolation? And how about community for rich, poignant tensions! It can be so light, wonderful, energizing, and effortless, and it can be...the opposite. But in a way it's almost unavoidable, almost a default for me to deal with community on some level--that's just how we live, how we interact with our world. We're all in this together.

Bird Kite, 2012
11 x 14 inches, acrylic on panel
JV: We did this interview several months ago...what has changed since then?

JM: I think the main thing that's changing is that I'm opening up my subject matter. I still have a fondness for the buildings and structures and they certainly still appear, but I'm happily admitting most anything I find interesting. I think of it as "introducing new characters" in a way. The foundations haven't changed, though. I feel the disposition of the work is the same, as is my interest in the West, broadly or narrowly defined. I feel the whimsy and humor remain, as do the different tensions I like to explore and incite. The work still has a lot of exaggeration but I think in a different way: now it's couched a little more in specific, actual or seemingly actual, landscapes. The result, I think, is that the exaggerations become more subtle and more evocative at the same time.

Eagle Kites, 2012
42 x 54 inches, oil on canvas
JV: What's been driving this approach in your latest work?

JM: The changes are all happening very organically, which is best, but also deliberately to a degree in order to keep things open and fresh, and to avoid cornering myself or being redundant. I find myself drawing more directly from personal experience these days, too. I can't say for sure why that is, but I think it has to do with a desire to see how our individual, particular worlds so often overlap and are shared, common, collective. As if to ask "do you feel this way, too? Is this true for you, too?" Mostly I feel myself "along for the ride" more than ever, letting go and being carried along, which is absolutely wonderful and a great place to be.

# # #

Congratulations, Canyon by Jeremy Mangan
November 1 - December 1, 2012
Opening reception: Thursday, Nov 1, 6-8pm
Linda Hodges Gallery

all images courtesy of Linda Hodges Gallery and the artist.