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With our limping economies, the power flux between corporate giants, and the rover Curiosity landing on Mars, it could be said that the human climate here on earth is unstable at best, despite our steady technological progress.
Eddie Colla, Hugh Leeman, and D Young V have come together to envision a post-apocalyptical future, and do so by melding their perspectives into a single narrative. “We tried to find a point at which all of our work intersects. The idea of this ‘epilogue’ seems to be a natural progression for everyone’s work in one way or another,” says Colla. The word apocalypse comes from the Greek, meaning uncovered, and in religious contexts stands for a revelation of meaning hidden from mankind. This immersive installation will take place in LA’s Hold Up Gallery, and reveals a world by way of detritus, weaponry, images, and other objects in what the artists describe as a challenging but ultimately rewarding collaboration. Leeman forgoes oil paint in favor of the less traditional carbon soot emissions and 14 karat gold, billboard posters, and appropriated images from Facebook, while D Young V makes objects familiar to us strange, using weapons, flags, helmets, and vehicle parts.
One message these three are trying to convey is this: societal collapse may not be a bad thing. Leeman is painting females for the first time in years, and says that for him, “painting females is the light at the end of the tunnel.” They speak to rebirth, procreation, of a future and an exchange of power. When we spoke on the phone, Leeman told me about the time he almost drowned in Colombia on a rafting trip. The raft was sucked into a hole, which knocked the guide out, and the guide grabbed onto Leeman on his way out of the boat. In the water Leeman says he was thinking, “The world is amazing. It was the craziest thing, kind of beautiful in hindsight, totally quiet down in the water, I remember thinking this is so comfortable, I’m so glad i’m here.” This image of Leeman underwater, feeling at peace, makes me think of “Epilogue,” and of the irrational solace that could come when one is confronted with the possibility of death.
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It reminds me of this fifty-year-old family friend, the boyfriend of my father’s ex-girlfriend Elena. His relation to me is a mouthful, unlike his name: Hash. His last name, really. Hash is a nice enough guy who when sober turns ugly as his steadfast booze addiction takes the reins for the night. We took a taxi from his house. My younger sister, his girlfriend, and I were already pretty high. I had the feeling things would go south when at one point I disagreed with Hash over something stupid. You don’t get to be a millionaire by being wrong, he said.
Waiting 101 is contemporary artist Brett Amory’s second solo exhibition at Lazarides’ Outsiders Gallery, and opens on April 19th. The show focuses on this Oakland-based painter’s incorporation of new technologies, namely, the iPhone and Instagram, into his documentation of the Bay Area’s people and landscapes. The moments Brett chooses remind me of something novelist Kurt Vonnegut wrote: “Here we are, trapped in the amber of the moment. There is no why.” I feel this way looking at Brett’s paintings, something about this communal longing paused and solidified.
Brett’s Waiting series has been evolving for over a decade now, and the nuances of what he is looking for have naturally shifted. “When I first started the series, the idea and approach were more straight forward. I was commuting to work by train so most of the work was train paintings. It was more about waiting to be somewhere else.”
When Brett returned to the series in 2007, the concept had evolved, and the way he wanted to paint had changed. “I was still interested in waiting to be somewhere else, but I was also exploring ideas of not being present. While we wait most of us are not in the now. We are thinking of our past and anticipating the future. I thought by removing the environment, the viewer would focus on the feeling of the work first and aesthetic second.” Brett tries to evolve the concept with every show, each of which is a sub series within the larger Waiting series.
You can read the rest of the article here.
Spending months in bed healing from chronic appendicitis is no way to start a band. Or is it? To beat the bed-rest boredom, Sam Ore turned to what he knew best: the blues. Ore teamed up with longtime blues player Aaron Hyatt and bassist Jordan Smith, and Three-Eared Dog was born. Their debut EP, Stuck in the Mountains, for which they play a release party this week at The Top Hat, contains tracks such as “Gas Station Blues,” “Should Be a Crime” and “Why Don’t You Leave Me?” There’s grit here, the kind that separates lunchtime jogger from marathoner.
What sort of breed is Three-Eared Dog?
Before playing, they do five to 10 minutes of yoga to loosen up: A little downward dog, some child’s pose. Another quirk of theirs is using “Tone Foam,” an idea they borrowed from late Texas blues guitarist Freddie King to get more bass tone that involves sticking a chunk of Styrofoam under the strings.
They break down the blues for me. “You’ve got your Mississippi sharecroppers, the field hollerers, first generation,” says Ore. “Next, Muddy Waters, more electrified. Then you’ve got people like Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor, third generation, and even more electricity. We’re fourth generation.” They combine elements of jazz, rock and pop, and work from a basic blues template. “As a band, we’re embracing our multi-generic, mono-cultural roots, and our first album strongly reflects this,” says Ore.
Hyatt hails from Butte, while Ore and Smith are small-town boys from Three Forks and Hamilton. Each made his way to Missoula, where all three ended up learning most of what they know on guitar from the same guy. “At that point, he was 16, in college and the best guitarist I’d ever played with,” says Ore. His name was Owen Ross.
The gallery of swarthy visionary Gavin Brown has changed locations several times over the years, from a double-front storage space on Soho’s Broome Street in the early 1990’s, to Chelsea, to its current, quieter West Village corner. What remains consistent, however, is the quality of artists Mr. Brown chooses to inhabit his walls. By foot, by car, by bus is Uri Aran’s first show in New York City since Geraniums, the show that closed Rivington Arms three years ago.
Cookies and coffee lids make for queer landscapes. A quote from John Scott Haldane, a Scottish physiologist known for his self-experimentation with poisonous gases and for inventing the concept of the miner’s canary, implies perhaps that limits are being tested, and that Aran as both enabler and clerk of this new knowledge has something at stake.
The modes of navigation in the title of this Israeli-born artist’s exhibition reference the very nature of language, its metaphysical grids, potholes, and molehills, and call attention to the fact that there are many ways to arrive at any given destination. For Aran, this destination is communication, more specifically, communication of emotion. This is a subtler excavation than Mr. Brown’s enterprise has seen previously, courtesy of the more literal Urs Fischer, but one that invokes the spirit of the mines in its search, by probing into the depths of human perception to unearth new realms of hierarchy and classification.
In this expansive undertaking, Aran comments on the difficulties of communication by way of “bureaucratic formalism,” with images, video, sculpture, and sound. Aran redesigns our world through careful arrangement, manipulating the objects in our everyday lives, and in doing so unspools their narratives and associations so they may come together in new forms. “The infinite possibilities of producing meaning through the interplay of sign and signifier—I address this aspect of language through repetition, re-organization and quotation,” he says.
He takes everyday and found objects, from childhood as well as from office life, and places them on tables and desks to make formal, material, and cultural suggestions about labor and leisure, their interplay, and the commoditized aspects of both.
To read the rest, visit Whitehot Magazine.
Danielle Krysa, whom you might know as the Jealous Curator, has a BFA in Visual Arts, with a focus on painting, printmaking, and art history, as well as a post grad design degree. I spoke with Danielle about her new series, Blush, and about how she balances writing about others, design work, and her own artwork. In Blush, the girls call back to a time before we traded in the dusty Playboys for their sleeker online counterparts. When budding sexuality was accessed perhaps by digging through old attics or drugstore racks in search of sexy photos, rather than tapping “sex” into a google search bar.
Curbs & Stoops: How do you balance writing about others and doing your own work? I sometimes find that I wish I was focusing on one or the other, yet also that this enriches my personal work immensely. How do you create time for each?
Danielle: I wish I could get a few more hours in the day — that would definitely help! I spend a lot more time on The Jealous Curator than I do on my own work, but in the last year I’ve been trying really hard to carve out time for myself (usually late at night). Finding amazing work to post everyday has definitely inspired me to spend more time in the studio, and honestly I feel better (more complete) when I’m making stuff. I’ve been like that since I was a little kid.
Curbs: Tell me about your new series. Do you always involve such personal content? How did you decide to do this series?
Danielle: Ha! Yes, but not usually this much personal content! I do like using personal references though, because then the work means more to me. This series, titled “Blush”, was actually just meant for myself until Kate at Buy Some Damn Art got her hands on it. I’ve had this idea about the collision of innocence and sexuality rolling around in my head for about five years or so, but I wasn’t sure how to represent it visually until a few months ago. I tried a few different ways, and it was never quite right until I decided to share my own story. Let’s just say I was in my early teens when a cute boy who loved KISS came knocking. At the time it was “like totally awesome”, but looking back as an adult I think it’s kinda crazy that while I was still totally into collecting sparkly rainbow stickers, I was also making out as “Love Gun” blared in the background!
Curbs: What do you think about innocence and sexual curiosity? Any thoughts on how that ties into music now, or pop culture?
Danielle: Oh, I could get in a lot of trouble answering this one, but… I think it’s human nature to be curious when you’re young. Yes, current pop culture has all sorts of influences, but I had Madonna rolling around on the floor singing about “being touched for the very first time” and I turned out okay. Everyone is going to have their own experiences. Let’s just hope that most of them are positive.
Read the rest here.
For Megan Wolfe, dry media has always felt more natural. “It’s easier to fall into,” she says, “while painting has always felt like more of a process.” A San Francisco-based artist known for her avian subject matter, Megan has long worked on hyperrealist, graphite drawings inspired by her own migration from Mississippi to sunny California. “There’s something to be said for dwelling in a medium for a long time,” Megan says, “but when you reach that place where you have so much control, it’s time to go discover something else.”
With that in mind, Megan transferred her natural energies from a well-honed graphite process to painting, which suited her move toward a more abstract style. Patron of the Arts (our partner site) is proud to present the first look at Megan’s transition in the online gallery.
“Reformation: Movement in Color” is Megan Wolfe’s first solo show of paintings, and we are excited for you to take a look at these ten originals and see for yourself how this promising artist has evolved in style, medium, and color (the originals can be viewed here). In addition Patron of the Art’s is offering a very exclusive companion, limited edition Giclee print, of Megan’s work, which can be viewed and purchased, here.
Megan’s process reflects her identity as an artist: linear, logical, and organized. These qualities allow her to relinquish control in a measured way. The challenge for Megan was to feel as natural painting as she did drawing, which proved difficult at first. “My graphite drawings came from a very emotional place, initially born out of frustration, and I was searching for the same sensation of accessing those emotions, feeling raw, aggressive, intuitive.” Snapping a few photos of pigeons for references, she experimented with how dry and thick she could make the paint, and found she preferred kitchen and palette knives to a hard brush. The knives allowed her to carve and build up layers, and to access the raw emotional space she’s used to working in with a more visceral technique.
To read the rest, visit: http://warholian.com/2012/02/16/megan-wolfe/
Hammer Gallery’s head curator, Douglas Fogle, has put together an exhibition featuring a pair of men who have had some serious impact on documenting America’s cultural landscape over the years. In Ed Ruscha’s large canvas acrylic paintings, he takes bite-size chunks from Kerouac’s On The Road and places them over nature backdrops. As a writer I’m always interested in what images can do for the words, whether the pure grit of fiction can be enhanced at all without losing something. But as small clips, these words grow to represent something larger than themselves, something iconic, with that mountain peak below, and loom larger even than from their context in Kerouac’s famed scroll. A quote of epic proportion. At first I didn’t love how the white “probably” blends in with the snow, but on second glance I liked it. The barely there ‘probably’ gives a fluctuation to the end of the sentence, shifting it to “one that means heaven.”
The spacing between the words and the way in which they float seems to isolate the phrase in such a way that a singular impact is created. The sense that Kerouac’s words are here, on a large canvas hung on a wall, gives them a tangible permanence that is hard to gain from reading them on a page amid their fellow sentences. And the surreal, almost alien-like shadow on the mountain below makes me think of the peaks with their great mystics perching, small men sweating up mountains for a grain of advice from an illuminated sage, the immeasurable sky of an environment that is not too shabby despite man’s messy habitation.
Mixed Greens has a show up right now called Cabin Fever that has some work similar to Ruscha’s, and I think it would be interesting to look at them side by side. These are small laser print and spray paint pieces by Tyler Matthew Oyer that are mounted on aluminum. There is more going on in these and less negative space. The scale and beauty of the desert landscapes and hills together with the gold wording and portal-like doorway framing a painted peak, when combined with names of Broadway musicals, create a temporary vision of a place and an era, much like Ed Ruscha’s paintings do for Kerouac’s words. These remind me of the black and white of old television, and of alien sightings and spectacle. Where mystics would be climbing Ruscha’s hills for wise words, men climbing these desert hunks of rock could be looking for hints of something beyond what mankind has found before, for extraterrestrials or doorways into other worlds. Happy Monday.
“Fefe Talavera is an internationally known muralist whose personality is sometimes misunderstood because of the monsters she creates. Her intensity of expression speaks to the irrepressible instincts and deepest urges of the creative process, and revels in the joy of this ferocity. Reworking pain, suffering, and ugliness she encounters is a positive, regenerative process for Fefe. Sheworks to reach the true depths of emotion. The rigor of the search and the furia with which she conducts her life are not acts of an unquiet and pessimistic mind, but rather demonstrate her strength at coping with and making beautiful all that life serves her.
Fefe isn’t the only artist whose content often causes people to misunderstand her intentions and demeanor. The Jealous Curator takes her inspiration from that guttural twinge of envy she gets when she sees art she loves. Tinkebell is an Amsterdam-based artist whose work at times involves taxidermy. Her work is often perceived as a perverse exploitation of animals for art’s sake, when in fact Tink’s process is grounded in raising awareness of animal rights. Repressing nothing and opening themselves up to create free from any impositions, both overt and subconscious, that the outside world may impose on them, Fefe and those like her set the tone for a menagerie of free thinking and unrestrained expression that dares to graze the innermost levels of the human psyche.”
To read the interview, go here.