Monday, January 31, 2011

Wanna go to an opening tomorrow?

Resonant Forms An exhibition featuring artwork by Martha Jackson-Jarvis (who is one of the 100 artists in my book), Alonzo Davis, and Frank Smith.

The show is co-presented by the Brentwood Arts Exchange and the Prince George's African American Museum and Cultural Center.

Dates: February 1 - April 9, 2011.
Opening Reception: Friday, February 11. 5-8pm

Brentwood Arts Exchange @ Gateway Arts Center
3901 Rhode Island Avenue
Brentwood, MD 20722

Sunday, January 30, 2011

No shortage of shovels

For years I've been bitching about the decline of visual arts coverage in the Washington Post, but with the recent departures of both Jessica Dawson and Blake Gopnik, the Post's visual arts coverage has hit rock bottom, and yet they continue to dig.


Campello reviewed

Not me, but my actress daughter Elise (again)... read the review online here.

Things I wish someone had told me...

From January 25 through February 8, anyone can list on Ebay Auction-style for free at any starting price, including high-ticket items. List up to 100 items, and pay only if your item sells.

So what have you got to lose (other than time)? Go ahead and list some artwork and see what happens...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Peret

What happens when you mix Cuban rumba with Spanish Sevillanas music and dancing and then you set up a street party on the streets of Santiago in eastern Cuba? Check out Spanish legend Peret in the video below:


Heard on Univision

Interesting discussion on the salary of the 13 highest paid American presidents from all over the Americas... the highest paid is Pres. Obama ($400,728 a year), next is Mexican president Felipe Calderon at $198,288 and then Brazilian Prime Minister Dilma Rousseff at $187,428.

Bolivian President Evo Morales, who also happens to be the first indigenous native American president of any nation in the New World, is at the bottom of this scale and makes $24,096 a year and yet still gets paid more that a dozen other Presidents in the Americas.

Interesante, no?

Friday, January 28, 2011

Vincent Gallegos

I've been meaning to mention this for a long time, but I am a huge fan of Vincent Gallegos' blog and photography, and essentially a while back I realized that Gallegos is easily the best "event photographer" in the DMV.

Vincet GallegosIn fact, he's work is so cool that I'm beginning to think that Vincent has now transcended the "photographer presence" and he's one of those key parts of our area's cultural tapestry that makes his presence itself a lynch pin success for that event.

If Gallegos is there for your opening, taking pics and mixing in, then you know you've got a kewl opening going on.

Check him out here and be prepared to see what one day will be a historical record of the DMV visual art scene and then more.

Next Friday: Open Source

It takes a lot to get DMVers to hit the road on a cold Friday night, but next Friday night you got to get off your snowmaggedon-fearing blues and go see "Open Source" at Carrol Square Gallery, co-curated by Tom Ashcraft and Peter Winant, both professors at GMU.

The show features work by Kelly Criscuolo-DeButts, Floating Lab Collective, Oliver Giron, Lindsay Hawks, Peter Lee, Brooke Marcy, Ryan McCoy and Alex Straub. It actually opened today, but the reception is next Friday.

My predictions before I even see the show? Look for Ryan McCoy to steal the show.

OPEN SOURCE
January 28 - March 25, 2011
Opening Reception: Friday, February 4, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Carroll Square Gallery
975 F Street, NW
Washington, DC 20004

Artists' Websites: Carol Brown Goldberg

Carol Brown GoldbergCarol Brown Goldberg has been exhibiting in Washington, D.C. since 1975. She earned her BA in American Studies at the University of Maryland, and then trained at the Corcoran School of Art under Gene Davis, winning the Eugene M. Weisz award upon graduation. Since that time, her paintings have been in over a hundred solo and group shows in the United States, Europe, Russia, and Central America.

She is one of the 100 DMV artists in the book 100 Washington, DC Artists.

Jessika Dené Tarr at Hillyer

Jessika Dené Tarr

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Opportunities for Artists

Deadline: April 6, 2011

The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery is now seeking artists for the development of its Art Advisory.

The Art Advisory, a full service entity of the gallery, will assist private collectors, corporations, and healthcare facilities in transforming their home or office environments through the thoughtful integration of artwork to create spaces that enhance creativity, promote tranquility, and offer inspiration. From their news release:

We currently seek works by painters, photographers, sculptors, printmakers, muralists, installation and new media artists to support our developing advisory services and future projects. Chosen Advisory artists will work with the gallery to sell existing works or to create commissioned pieces specific to future clients' needs.

We accept two and three-dimensional works of art, including works on paper (edition of 500 or less) and Giclée prints (edition of 250 or less). Individual art works will not be selected from the call; rather, we will invite selected artists to be non-exclusively represented by the Advisory. After an initial review process a preliminary selection of artists will be asked to deliver/ship one work to the gallery, upon which the final decision will be based. Consequently, all artists, except installation & new media artists, should plan to be available to deliver or ship one work for either the week of July 4 or July 11, exact review dates TBD. Exceptions will be made on an individual basis. To be considered for the Art Advisory artists must complete the Call to Artists form and submit materials according to the set guidelines, postmarked by APRIL 6, 2011. For guidelines and Advisory Prospectus please see the gallery website: www.smithfarm.com/gallery.

Participating Jurors include: Rosana Azar, Creative Adventures; Myrtis Bedolla, Galerie Myrtis; Mary Early, Hemphill Fine Arts; Lillian Fitzgerald, National Institutes of Health; Helen Frederick, George Mason University School of Art and Design; Anne Marchand, Professional Artist; Foon Sham, University of Maryland College Park; Alec Simpson, Brentwood Arts Exchange at Gateway Arts Center; and Tim Tate, The Washington Glass School.

Dr. Fred at the WPA

Dr. Frederick P. Ognibene, Deputy Director for Educational Affairs and Strategic Partnerships at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD, has been elected Chair of the Board of Directors for Washington Project for the Arts (WPA).

A notable collector of contemporary art and a generous patron of emerging and mid-career artists, Fred Ognibene has twice been a member of the WPA board (1995-2003 and 2008-present). His collection, which he has been cultivating since 1984, includes over 200 works by national and international artists. Many works in his collection have been loaned to museums and arts organizations for exhibition; a number have been donated by Dr. Ognibene to the permanent collection of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden.

"WPA plays a vital role in promoting excellence in contemporary art throughout the greater Washington area," said Dr. Ognibene. "It's quite an honor to be entrusted with leading this 35-year organization through its next phase of growth and development." Since its inception in 1975, WPA has showcased the work of thousands of artists and has touched hundreds of thousands of visitors and viewers with its programs and projects.

Ognibene succeeds outgoing board chair Andres E. Tremols, co-founder and partner of Vivo Design. Tremols's three-year tenure began with WPA's separation from the Corcoran Gallery of Art in 2007. During his years as board chair, Mr. Tremols reestablished WPA as a fully-independent non-profit organization, rebuilt the Board of Directors, and initiated WPA's long-term Strategic Plan, among other initiatives. "I could not have accomplished so much without the tremendous talent and effort of our entire board, including my successor, Fred Ognibene. With Executive Director Lisa Gold at the helm and Fred steering the board, WPA is in excellent hands." Tremols will remain a Director on the WPA board.

In addition to changes in the leadership role, three new directors have been elected to the WPA board. They are Michael Rankin, Managing Partner of TTR Sotheby's International Realty, DC, MD and VA; Judy J. Sherman, an independent curator and Project Manager/Art Consultant at The Ralls Collection in Washington, DC; and Jocelyn Sigue, an independent producer and writer with a background in broadcast journalism. "I am delighted to welcome this trio of thoughtful, energetic and productive board members," said Fred Ognibene. "They join a very strong and effective board - WPA should anticipate very exciting results."

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Norfolkin'

I'm in Norfolk, where it is very cold and rainy, but I hear that it is snowmaggedin' in the DMV and now I have to look forward to driving back tomorrow in the middle of all that!

Feh!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Seventh Annual Bethesda Painting Awards

Deadline: Friday, February 25, 2011

The Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District is currently accepting applications for the seventh annual Bethesda Painting Awards, a juried competition honoring four selected painters with $14,000 in prize monies. Deadline for submission is February 25, 2011. Up to nine finalists will be invited to display their work at a Bethesda gallery.

The competition will be juried this year by Philip Geiger, an art instructor at the University of Virginia; Evelyn Hankins, associate curator at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. and Jinchul Kim, a painting professor at Salisbury University.

The first place winner will be awarded $10,000; second place will be honored with $2,000 and third place will be awarded $1,000. A “young” artist whose birth date is after February 25, 1981 may also be awarded $1,000.

Artists must be 18 years of age or older and residents of Maryland, Virginia or Washington, D.C. All original 2-D painting including oil, acrylic, watercolor, gouache, encaustic and mixed media will be accepted. No reproductions.

Each artist must submit five digital files or slides, application and a non-refundable entry fee of $25.

Applications are available online at www.bethesda.org.

The Bethesda Painting Awards were established by my good friend and Bethesda philanthropist, art collector and community activist Carol Trawick in 2005.

Dawson leaving the WaPo

The WaPo's Galleries critic Jessica Dawson, who for about 10 years has freelanced the Galleries column for the Washington Post (and who prior to that used to freelance art reviews for the Washington City Paper) will be departing the Washington Post as that newspaper's visual art critics' bleeding continues and Jessica is heading to a new gig at the Hirshhorn Museum, where she will join the museum's staff working on the Hirshhorn's Bubble.

We wish Jessica the best at her new job.

More later...

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Dynamics of the DC Art Scene

The Art Dealers Association of Greater Washington, in partnership with The Kreeger Museum, are putting together a panel discussion on how Art Dealers, Collectors, Curators and Museum Directors interact to support the visual arts in the DC area.

The Kreeger Museum,
2401 Foxhall Road NW
Washington, DC 20007

Thursday, February 24, 2011
6:30pm - 9 pm

Tickets: $20 / The Kreeger Museum Members: $15
Includes a cheese and wine reception.

Preceding the panel discussion, guests will have an opportunity to view In Unison: 20 Washington, DC Artists, the culmination of a project initiated by artist Sam Gilliam, consisting of monoprints by 20 artists from the DC community, who typically work in different styles and mediums.

For reservations, call 202-338-3552.

Panelists include:
- Juliette Bethea, Collector
- Dr. Johnnetta Cole, Director, National Museum of African Art
- Judy A. Greenberg, Director, The Kreeger Museum
- Gisela Huberman, Collector (and proud owner of my work)
- Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator, American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center
- and moderator Bill Dunlap, Artist and Art Critic and TV talking head, and one of the 100 in my book about DC artists.

Considering the focus of the panel, am I the only one who finds it odd that missing from the panel are any art dealers?

Grouchoquotin'

"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read."

- Groucho Marx

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sacred Heart Of Healing

Tim Tate, Sacred Heart Of Healing
I am often asked by collectors about Tim Tate's former signature pieces, his series of hearts. The above is Sacred Heart Of Healing (about 16 x 8 x 4 in. or 40.6 x 20.3 x 10.2 cm) and this is the sister piece to the one in the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

The Tate hearts are only available in the secondary art market, as is this one. If you are interested and would like details, send me an email to lenny@lennycampello.com.

Select


The Washington Project for the Arts (WPA), the mid-Atlantic's premier alternative arts organization, has announced the dates for its Annual Art Auction Exhibition and Gala, SELECT. The curated exhibition will be on view Saturday, February 19 through Saturday, March 12, 2011.

Saturday, March 12, 2011 marks the 30th anniversary of the organization's well-known arts gala that includes a curated silent auction of more than 100 contemporary works by top contemporary artists, formal dinner, and performance art. Tickets to the auction gala start at $300. I have been selected to participate in this auction for the second year in a row.

The event will be held at 700 Sixth Street, an Akridge-managed property, in northwest Washington; it is expected to draw over 500 art enthusiasts.

In advance of the March 12 event, WPA will host an exhibition opening reception on February 19 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm and Curators' View on March 1 from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm. These two events are free and open to the public. At the Curators' View, each Select curator will present and discuss their exhibition selections. In addition, WPA's prized Alice Denney Award will be presented by Robert Lehrman to Washington-based artist William Christenberry for his support of WPA and sustained commitment to the DC arts community.

The SELECT exhibition will be on view 11:00 am to 6:00 pm, Wednesdays-Saturdays, through March 12th. For a complete list of participating artists or images, please contact Kristen DeMarco at auction@wpadc.org.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Rattner Museum theft

"Bronze sculptures stolen from a Bethesda museum and vandalized were reportedly worth about $90,000. The thief allegedly sold them to a scrap dealer for $150.

The artworks are back at the Dennis and Phillip Ratner Museum, after a worker at Montgomery Scrap in Rockville realized he had bought stolen goods. But most were "damaged beyond repair," Montgomery County police said Wednesday."
The cops had issued an arrest warrant Wednesday for Daniel Conticchio, 27, of the 4500 block of Ninth Street NW. Read the WaPo story here.

According to a later story in The Gazette, "Jessica Rivas, 22, listed on court records as living on the 9300 block of Old Georgetown Road in Bethesda — about a mile from the museum — was arrested Thursday at the same time as Daniel Conticchio, 27, of Washington, D.C., police said."

According to the Gazette, "Police issued a warrant for Conticchio's arrest Wednesday and found him and Rivas asleep in Conticchio's car in the Wildwood Shopping Center parking lot at Old Georgetown Road and Democracy Boulevard in Bethesda Thursday."

Makes my head hurt.

Early Campello

They have this computer program display at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum where you line up your face on the screen and it takes a shot and then transforms you into what you may have looked like as one of pre Homo Sapiens species. At the risk of opening myself to a million jokes (such as my wife: "You don't look that much different"), below is the Lenster as a Neanderthal.

Campello as a Neanderthal
By the way, read this fascinating NYT article on Neanderthal mating with modern homo sapiens and leaving his DNA on Europeans.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Torpedo Factory Art Center Visiting Artist Program

Deadline: February 28, 2011.

The Torpedo Factory Art Center invites emerging and experienced artists to apply for one, two, or three-month residencies between June 1 and August 31, 2011.

The Torpedo Factory Art Center (www.torpedofactory.org) in Alexandria, Virginia is home to more than 140 visual artists working in 82 studios. Artists create in a wide variety of media including painting, fiber, jewelry, ceramics, printmaking, cast and stained glass, and sculpture. The Torpedo Factory is open to the public every day; visitors are invited and welcomed into studios to watch artists at work, ask questions, and purchase original art – allowing the public an opportunity to share in the excitement and fascination of the creative process.

The projects undertaken by Visiting Artists for this self-directed, creative residency must be compatible with available working studio spaces and facilities.

Visiting Artists will be provided with studio space and will be able to display and sell original work.

Finalists will be selected by yours truly. There is no application fee.

Download the Prospectus and Application Form from www.torpedofactory.org/vap.

Annual Jury for TF Artists

The Torpedo Factory Art Center has announced the 2011 Annual Jury for Artist Members (February 28-March 3, 2011).

The application form, submission requirements and instructions are available at this website. Please direct inquiries to Michele Hoben, jury chair.

Next at the Arts Club

There are three openings coming up at the Arts Club of Washington (2017 I Street, N.W.), but the one that I'm really looking forward to is the one of new paintings by the superbly talented Michal Hunter.

The reception is Friday, February 4th, 6:30 to 9 PM, in the Monroe Gallery. (There are three shows opening same night in different galleries).

Opportunities for Artists

On-line gallery. AddictionAndArt.Org is seeking artworks addressing the complexities of addiction and recovery to post/share with a worldwide audience - for the good of mankind. Works in any media, completed in any year are eligible. www.addictionandart.org - go to "Share Your Art" in the menu. Questions: editor@addictionandart.org or call 301-639-3520 for submission information.

By the way, Big Think just listed the Addiction and Art book as one of the top 10 art books of 2010!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Artist talk tonight

Newly minted Baltimorean and realist artist Hyeseung Marriage-Song has been invited to speak at the Charcoal Club of Baltimore’s monthly meeting on Thursday, January 20, 2011, at 7 pm at the Meadow Mill Building, Studio 213, 3600 Clipper Mill Road.

Marriage-Song, 32, is a realist artist represented by the Eleanor Ettinger Gallery in New York City, located in Midtown and Chelsea. She studied at the prestigious Water Street Atelier and Grand Central Academy in New York under Jacob Collins and recently moved to Baltimore with her husband who is on the faculty of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University in Homewood. Marriage-Song primarily works in oil, creating portraits, nudes, still lifes and landscapes from life, eschewing photographic references. On Thursday, she will be speaking about her work and techniques as well as demonstrating her alla prima technique with the help of a live model chosen from the audience.

Marriage-Song has shown in numerous group shows in New York City, Atlanta and Houston. She is an Elizabeth Greenshields Recipient and an Art Renewal Center Competition Finalist and award recipient in the Figure Painting Category. Her studio is in School 33 Art Center, in Federal Hill, which is a program of the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.

The Charcoal Club was established in 1883 and is the country’s second oldest art club. The club provides a nude model for a small fee and encourages art appreciation through group shows and speakers.

Next at Brentwood

Resonant Forms An exhibition featuring artwork by Martha Jackson-Jarvis (who is one of the 100 artists in my book), Alonzo Davis, and Frank Smith.

The show is co-presented by the Brentwood Arts Exchange and the Prince George's African American Museum and Cultural Center.

Dates: February 1 - April 9, 2011.
Opening Reception: Friday, February 11. 5-8pm

Brentwood Arts Exchange @ Gateway Arts Center
3901 Rhode Island Avenue
Brentwood, MD 20722

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Open mouth

I had one of the most shocking, unexpected meetings - ever - today. I am still dumbfounded by the news, and the only reason that I am not pulling my hair out is because the person on the other side who told me the shocking news is someone I trust and consider a friend.

Still... Feh!

At Civilian

"Civilian Art Projects presents climate, control, a three-person exhibition curated by Kristina Bilonick and Karyn Miller featuring J.J. McCracken, Jan Razauskas, and Millicent Young. The name climate, control refers to the artists' response to their immediate surroundings, as well as the exacting nature of their practice. The artists in this exhibition work in drastically different materials - from clay and horsehair to drawing and paint - but in each of their works, there is an intense focus on the precision of artistic production, and a sense of significance in the medium they chose to work in. The artists cull the fodder for their work and in some cases their materials from their immediate surroundings. Miller points out though, that, "at the same time there is an openness to chance which gives it a kind of negative tension." The exhibition opens to the public on January 21, 2011 and will be on view through February 19, 2011 at Civilian Art Projects in downtown Washington, DC."
Exhibition on view: January 21 - February 19, 2011
Opening Reception for the artists: Friday, January 21, 7-9 p.m.
Artist Talk: Saturday, February 19, 4p.m.

Judkis reporting

Maura Judkis has a really cool report on the temper-flaring effects of my Che Guevara video drawing at the MIA art fair last week. Read that here.

Judkis also has a really terrific interview/report on the very talented Victoria F. Gaitán, who is easily developing into one of the brightest new stars of the DMV art scene. Read that here.

Bit of a quandary

One of the positive "wake" effects of exhibiting at good art fairs is that one's artwork is not only exposed to a lot of collectors, but also to a lot of other gallerists and curators.

For example, at the just finished Miami International Art Fair, and as I related in this blog in the last few days, my Che Guevara video drawing obtained a lot of attention and a good share of uninformed threats.

An Argentine gallery approached me yesterday, interested in bringing the piece to Buenos Aires for an exhibition on Guevara. This sounds like a terrific opportunity, doesn't it?

However, it also puts me in the difficult position of having to make a decision. And that decision is driven by the point that I'd like to have at least three video drawings ready for the next art fair later this year in New York.

As they are quite expensive to produce (mostly due to the electronics), and because the Che piece has proven to be so wildly successful, I am leaning to declining the invitation so that I can keep it with me and exhibit it later this year in New York alongside two other new video drawings.

The subject of the next video drawing will also be an icon-like figure, and either her open heart (or perhaps her forehead) will be the window into her soul where the video will be playing.

The third subject will also be an icon-like drawing of yet another iconic figure, although this one may not be a "real" person.

But I need at least three for NYC and I don't want to ship away the most controversial one!

What to do?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Miami International Art Fair video

Here's a quick walk-through the fair...


Airborne - Things I didn't know

I'm flying back home today and I was a little shocked when I checked into my flight back to DC from Ft Lauderdale; shocked because I discovered that American Airlines has a direct flight to Guantanamo, Cuba.

Not Gitmo the Naval Base, but Guantanamo, the Cuban city made famous by the song Guajira Guantanamera.

Who knew?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (last day)

MIA ended with an unexpected bang today for Mayer Fine Art, as some rare "I'll be backs" actually came back and acquired some more work from Norfolk's hardest working independently owned commercial fine arts gallery.

Tim Tate - tales of magnetismAs soon as the doors opened at noon, a well-known Cuban-American doctor arrived and purchased an older Tim Tate 2005 piece which was being sold on behalf of the original owner, who is now retired and living the good life in Pensacola Beach. This clearly shows that Tate's older work still holds its own a few years into its life.

Soon after that a Boston couple on their way to visit Cuba fell in love with Sandra Ramos' work and acquired one of her 1993 series classic aquatint etchings. It was shaping to be a day for older work back on the market.

The Argentine couple who earlier in the week had acquired the Sheila Giolitti painting returned today and purchased an Alexey Terenin oil which had been haunting them since their original visit

A couple of hours later, the culmination of three days of negotiations ended with the major sale of two very large Alexey Terenins - one well over seven feet tall and six feet across and the other just slightly smaller. They are both heading to Pompano Beach and possibly represents the largest one day business day for MFA... ever.

When closing time came, to my horror I discovered that it was pouring down rain outside. Now the horrific task of trying to load a van full of artwork in the rain while ensuring that the work is protected began.

It is difficult enough to handle and load work properly in the best of times; it is a nightmare in bad weather, and I can testify to the marvel of seeing gallerists wheeling $100,000 paintings out in the rain to their vans and trucks.

We didn't do that. And to avoid it, we had to wrap the work in plastic, then cover it in plastic again, take it to the van, load it and then remove the wet outside plastic. This means that by midnight, although we were finished and all the art was loaded and safe, we were soaked to the bone and our feet were wet and spongy... ahhh the hidden glamorous life of the art dealer.

Tomorrow morning I head back home, and Sheila Giolitti heads to Palm Beach, where she will be taking part in Art Palm Beach later this week.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (Sunday Report)

Good crowds again today, but selling remains tentative, although one of the Colombian galleries next to us finally broke the ice in style today with the sale of a $20,000 painting.

Over at MFA, we recuperated from yesterday's no sales day with a few more sales, although the big ticket items remain unsold. Sold today was another Alexey Terenin painting in the early afternoon, and I then sold four of my drawings throughout the day, finally breaking the ice. I was also invited by a local gallery (which also has a presence in Europe and South America) to participate in a group show later this summer.

Tomorrow is the last day of the fair, as it runs into a rare Monday work day. Then comes the always brutal task of repacking all the unsold work and driving it all back home.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (Saturday Report)

Good crowds again today. The organizers have done a really good job of advertising (there are street banners everywhere) and there is significant volume all day.

Frustrating day for MFA though; one of those fair days of close calls, "I'll be backs" and the unexplainable inability to close clear sales.

Francis Acea, the tall, good-looking publisher of Miami Art Guide comes by and we have a very long chat about my Che Guevara video drawing and he plants an interesting dilemma in my mind (more on that later).

As the fair closes at 7PM, then I take my cousin and his family to dinner in Coral Gables at a Japanese restaurant. Afterwards we drop by a roof party in a gorgeous artists studio building in Wynwood. The 360 degree view is spectacular and there's also a heated pool on the roof. The bartender is a genius and his mojito making is good, but his gin and tonic with a drop of elderflower liqueur and key limes is magical.

I hear that there's a flat soon opening and perhaps going on the auction block... more on that later too.

The Dynamics of the DC Art Scene

The Art Dealers Association of Greater Washington, in partnership with The Kreeger Museum, are putting together a panel discussion on how Art Dealers, Collectors, Curators and Museum Directors interact to support the visual arts in the DC area.

The Kreeger Museum,
2401 Foxhall Road NW
Washington, DC 20007

Thursday, February 24, 2011
6:30pm - 9 pm

Tickets: $20 / The Kreeger Museum Members: $15
Includes a cheese and wine reception.

Preceding the panel discussion, guests will have an opportunity to view In Unison: 20 Washington, DC Artists, the culmination of a project initiated by artist Sam Gilliam, consisting of monoprints by 20 artists from the DC community, who typically work in different styles and mediums.

For reservations, call 202-338-3552.

Panelists include:
- Juliette Bethea, Collector
- Dr. Johnnetta Cole, Director, National Museum of African Art
- Judy A. Greenberg, Director, The Kreeger Museum
- Gisela Huberman, Collector (and proud owner of my work)
- Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator, American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center
- and moderator Bill Dunlap, Artist and Art Critic and TV talking head, and one of the 100 in my book about DC artists.

Considering the focus of the panel, am I the only one who finds it odd that missing from the panel are any art dealers?

Seventh Annual Bethesda Painting Awards

Deadline: Friday, February 25, 2011

The Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District is currently accepting applications for the seventh annual Bethesda Painting Awards, a juried competition honoring four selected painters with $14,000 in prize monies. Deadline for submission is February 25, 2011. Up to nine finalists will be invited to display their work at a Bethesda gallery.

The competition will be juried this year by Philip Geiger, an art instructor at the University of Virginia; Evelyn Hankins, associate curator at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. and Jinchul Kim, a painting professor at Salisbury University.

The first place winner will be awarded $10,000; second place will be honored with $2,000 and third place will be awarded $1,000. A “young” artist whose birth date is after February 25, 1981 may also be awarded $1,000.

Artists must be 18 years of age or older and residents of Maryland, Virginia or Washington, D.C. All original 2-D painting including oil, acrylic, watercolor, gouache, encaustic and mixed media will be accepted. No reproductions.

Each artist must submit five digital files or slides, application and a non-refundable entry fee of $25.

Applications are available online at www.bethesda.org.

The Bethesda Painting Awards were established by my good friend and Bethesda philanthropist, art collector and community activist Carol Trawick in 2005.

WPA 2011 Artist Directory

Deadline: February 1, 2011

The Washington Project for the Arts has announced a call for submissions for its 2011 Artist Directory.

Published bi-annually, this four-color, 8.5 x 5.5 inch directory is the definitive listing of established and emerging contemporary artists throughout the Washington region. It is seen by more than 2,000 galleries, curators, art consultants, and interested art patrons. Copies are distributed to selected art critics and other members of the press, and to museums both in the region and outside the area. The 2011 Artist Directory will also be available for sale on the WPA website and at select area retail locations at the price of $9.95.

Each participating artist will be featured on a full page (8.5 x 5.5 inches). The page will include the artist's name, a color digital image of their work, their studio address and phone number, email address, web address, and their gallery affiliation.

All current WPA members are eligible for publication in the Artist Directory. There is an additional registration fee that includes a copy of the Artist Directory. At this time, the registration fee is $75. The final registration deadline is February 1, 2011. No submissions will be accepted after this date.

All submissions will be handled through an online registration form on the WPA's website.

Each participating artist can upload one image to be featured on their page. Images must be submitted as .eps or .tif files in CMYK format. They must be 300dpi and as close as possible to, but no smaller than 6 inches on the longest side.

If you have any questions regarding the 2011 Artist Directory, please contact Blair Murphy, Membership Directory at bmurphy@wpadc.org or 202-234-7103 x 1.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Miami Biennial 2012

I am told that Miami is planning to host a Biennial next year. More as I find out more...

Miami International Art Fair (Opening Day)

Today was the official opening to the public and the crowds were pretty steady throughout the day and quite heavy at night. I also noticed that the champagne went from $14 a glass to $10 a glass. I suspect the price reduction was due to lack of interest in the $14 price.

There was a little drama across from us as yesterday the union guys working the fair (installing booths, lights, etc.) broke an art piece that was hanging in the booth directly across from us. That gallery (according to the owner) has done 41 fairs (I saw them at Scope last December) and he was furious.

Furious because last year, at the first MIA fair, the same thing happened to the same artist! Two fairs in a row the work crew damages the same artist's artwork. And furious because (according to him), no one took responsibility for the art damage, and once again this year, "nobody seen nuthin'"

And so he starts tearing down his booth - he's leaving the fair. Hi drama in Mya-a-mah!

An hour or two passes and he starts putting work back on the walls. Clearly he received some sort of agreement. I don't know what it was and it is none of my business.

This fires up Sheila from MFA, because her big Alexey Terenin painting has been damaged and no one is owning up to it. She goes away to shake up some trees and comes back with yet another form and another report.

First sale of the day occurs in the early afternoon as we sell two Sandra Ramos' etchings. The fact that two huge Sandra Ramos' paintings were recently acquired by the Miami Art Museum helps to make the sale to one Florida based collector.

The second sale is also a double-hitter, as MFA sells two Tim Tate sculptures to a local Florida collector. At the same time a cute New Jersey artist with a very original haircut buys one of my etchings - my first sale of the fair.

Charlottesville's Michael Fitts' works always attracts a lot of attention and generate a lot of sales. A local couple falls in love with his spoon painting but say that they will think about it and come back.

Michael Fitts SpoonsA few hours pass (with more threats to me because of the Che Guevara video drawing) before a dual state couple (they live half the year in NYC and half the year in Boca Raton) buys the Fitts' spoon painting. A few minutes later, and about three hours after they first expressed interest in the work, the other couple returns to buy it. They are shocked to see that it has sold.

I tell them that Picasso once said that the "best time to buy art is when you see it." They give me a venomous look and walk away.

The evening is rounded out with a wealthy Argentinean couple (these guys are dual country - they live half the year in Miami Beach and half the year in Buenos Aires) expresses interest in both Terenin and Sheila Giolitti's work.

Sheila GiolittiFor 90 minutes they debate before deciding to walk away and think about it. They come back 30 minutes later and buy the Giolitti, which will hang in their Buenos Aires home.

It's now 9PM and the fair is over, and by 9:30PM, exhausted and hungry and tired I head to Little Havana (where I'm staying at my cousin's house). These long nights are exhausting and my feet are killing me and as I drive on Calle Ocho I realize that I've left my cell phone at the booth and can't call home to say good night.

I'm also starving and stop at a sidewalk cookout joint with some sidewalk chairs on Calle Ocho and order a huge steak, yellow rice and steamed veggies for $12. The guy cooks it in front of me while describing the freshness of the meat and how delicious the yellow rice is.

While I wait they give me some complimentary frituras de malanga. They are delicious and so is my dinner as I eat it outside in the night breeze of Little Havana, next to some Cuban social club where lots of cute old Cuban guys in their 70s and 80s and all wearing guayaberas are all hanging outside on the sidewalk discussing baseball, Obama and local politics. There is one old guy wearing a 1970s disco shirt (and who looks like a lot like Ibrahim Ferrer) and he is defending Obama, while all the others are trashing him. I finish my late dinner, smell the words of a fiery but nonetheless a civil debate among old friends, and then head home to write this post and go to sleep happy that life is good.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (Preview Day)

Yesterday I described the arrival of a damaged huge painting to Mayer Fine Art's focus booth at the MIA and how that cast a bad start to MIA for Norfolk's best art gallery.

I got up early today, drove to Rico Bakery (3401 Northwest 17th Avenue, Miami, FL 33142-5537 (305) 637-0707), where they make 2-3 dozen different Cuban pastelitos and a lot of really yummy baked food, and bought two dozen Cuban pastelitos (they give you a free one when you buy six), plus a generous breakfast sandwich (a fried egg with ham and cheese on a Cuban bread bun that is then put on that hot press that is also used to make the famous Cuban sandwich.

I drove to MIA and passed the food to some of our gallery neighbors (both of them are galleries from Bogota, Colombia) and to Frank and Helen from Philadelphia's hardworking Projects Gallery. By the way, Projects Gallery's Frank Hyder has one of the coolest installations that I've ever seen in any fair. It has everything that a good installation should have: cool, intelligent sculptural elements, sound and an intelligent sense (actually aura, not sense) of truly transforming a space (a whole booth in this case) into a distinctive work of art. I will do a video of this installation later this week.

About eleven or so, a nice Cuban guy with bright blue eyes (Proof that Anderson and Cameron Diaz are not the only ones) and with the unfortunate name of Fidel (for a Cuban in Miami anyway) shows up. He is the restorer with the task of fixing the damaged Alexey Terenin mega-painting.

I will blow the climax of the story by telling you that by the end of the day this guy will prove himself to be a magician as well.

It is seldom in my experience that I have seen an "expert" not only be an expert, but also an aficionado of his expertise and a true hero in this case. For my fellow galleristas: when you come to Miami, if you need any repair work, or stretching, or conservation, or framing, then Obrapia Fine Arts (1648 Southwest 8th Street
Miami, FL 33135-5220 (305) 646-6751) has my highest possible recommendation.

Fidel arrived, looked at the work and initially began to repair the two holes right on the spot. He did that easily and quickly, and after he was done, it was impossible to find them again. Because the painting had been laid flat during shipping (even though the crate was marked with giant letters with DO NOT LAY FLAT signs), the canvas had stretched and was wavy and bubbly and had several pressure marks. Sheila Giolitti needed it re-stretched, and it became clear that the only way to get it back to a taut canvas would be to un-frame it and re-tighten it. This is no easy task for a huge seven feet by seven feet work of art, and the decision was made to take the painting back to Obrapia's shop and work on it there.

Easily said, but that meant that Fidel would have to go and rent a truck, come back, pick up the painting from the Convention Center, take it to his shop, un-frame it, upgrade the stretcher bars, stretch it, re-frame it, drive it back to the Convention Center and hang it. And it was 3PM and the fair opens at 6PM.

Somehow this dude did it. At 5:30PM he was back with a beautifully taut painting, and not only had he fixed the tiny pricks, and not only had he re-stretched the saggy linen, and not only had he upgraded the stretcher bars and added a cross bar and four angle corners, but the amazing dude had also touched up the frame and eliminated all the nicks and bruises from it. And then he hung it.

And then he gave Mayer Fine Art the bill, and Sheila was shocked at how reasonable that bill was, and the amazing degree of professionalism and expertise and joy for the job shown by this talented conservator. And Obrapia Fine Arts got a well-earned tip on top of the bill from Mayer Fine Art. And not only that, but a lesson learned as well: from now on, MFA plans to ship all the large Terenin canvases to Obrapia ahead of the Miami fairs. They can stretch and frame it and deliver it to the fairs for a heck of a lot less than it would cost to frame it and then ship it to Miami and take a chance for damage during the shipping.

At 6PM the crowds started pouring in and we were essentially flooded with people and press. The food was hard to get at, as the food tables were surrounded by a mass of humanity, but we still had a good stock of pastelitos left.

Michael Fitts paintingFirst sale of the night was a gorgeous trompe l'oeil painting by Michael Fitts. It was sold to a French collector who paid in cash. He counted in French and kept making mistakes and giving us anywhere from 5-8 twenty dollar bills in what was supposed to be $100 counts (that's five $20 bills equals $100 for you folks in California). We all kept having to recount the money and after a while it was either a farce or I was beginning to suspect that this guy was doing it on purpose for some kind of a scam. Finally we got it under control, and we ended with a lot of Jacksons and Benjamins and he ended with a cool trompe l'oeil (on reclaimed metal) of paper airplanes.

All through the night I was being accosted over my Che Guevara video drawing. Even a member of the press warns me that I shouldn't have that piece in Miami. "Someone will take a hammer to it before the fair is over," he predicts. Once I explain the whole reverse meaning of the piece, he becomes more understanding. Later in the night he brings his wife over and I see her eyes rage with fury - he's the one having fun with her now. And he's the one that explains the work to her. At the end she congratulates me on a well-done piece.

At one point the video drawing is almost sold to a Venezuelan collector, but I begin to discuss the second video drawing that I'm now working on (Frida Kahlo) and he wants to see that one instead (once it is finished). I get his business card and kick myself.

MFA then sells an Erwin Timmers glass sculpture to a very well-known Florida art collector. Timmers will be pleased when he finds out who this collector is. The buyer tells me that he'll be flying to DC for the WPA Auction.

And just like that, the preview night is over at 10PM, and with all the drama of the damaged painting behind, we're now looking forward to the real opening (to the public) of the fair tomorrow.

Miami International Art Fair (Set up day)

The 5 AM cab ride from Potomac to Reagan National was pretty hairy considering that the streets of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Montgomery County were pretty icy and snowy, and there were more than one ice tail spins along Bells Mill Drive on the way to Seven Locks and Democracy Blvd and the Beltway.

The Beltway was pretty clear of snow and ice, but I am always shocked to discover how many cars are out there at 5 in the morning. Who are all these drivers and where the fuck are they all going at 5 AM?

My cab driver (I always call the same guy, his names is Bones, and he will get you from A to B every time on time. Once you have a dependable cab driver, one must return to the force every time). Bones is reliable, big and strong, a brilliant storyteller and really resembles that huge guy from the Green Mile.

So we get to DCA on time, in spite of a few spin-offs at the George Washington Parkway, and I'm loving Jet Blue because they don't charge a fee for luggage while most of the other airlines scam you out of $50 per round trip if you check in a bag; and because flight 1795 is leaving on time in spite of the ice and snow. But once we're in the plane, by the time we're de-iced it is is almost 90 minutes past departure time, but I'm cool because I am heading to Miami for the second Miami International Art Fair (MIA) at the Miami Beach Convention Center and it is in the 70s in Florida and according to the weather people, Florida is the only state in the union (including Hawaii) which doesn't have snow somewhere on the ground today. WTF happened to global warming?

When we land (it was a Navy landing by the way, because it was clearly the short runway), the tall, skinny flight attendant dude tells us that we've made up 30 minutes from our late departure, which as usual leads me to think: do they fly "faster" if they leave late?

Then I get a rental car, and as always marvel at all the bullshit car rental taxes in Florida that cost almost as much as the actual rental car cost, but I get a free upgrade to a minivan because they're out of "real" cars...

Then I drive to quickly see my parents before stopping over at Casablanca Bakery in Hialeah for the best pastelitos, papa rellena, croquetas, bacalao, yuca rellena, and Cuban bread in the area (and a full breakfast anytime for $3). They put it all in a nice box and I take it to my parents.

From there I drive to Little Havana, where I had left a bunch of my artwork in store at my cousin's house. I get there, load up the minivan and head to Miami Beach to meet Sheila, the hardworking artist and owner/director of Mayer Fine Art to help her set up in booth 105 of the fair.

At the MB Convention Center there's an army of people assembling booths and putting art shows together. This is the same floor, the same place where the "real" Art Basel Miami Beach takes place, and there's a feeling to being here that is quite unique.

Mayer Fine Art actually has two booths at this fair: one for gallery artists and one focus booth for their big selling European superuberartist Alexey Terenin.

Terenin deserves the focus booth (curated by Aldo Castillo).

Terenin... this Russian-born painter is an exceptional master of the marriage of the palette knife with the brush and with intensely psychological scenarios... and he sells like crazy!

For MIA, Sheila has chosen a huge Terenin painting, almost seven feet tall. She has spent over a thousand dollars getting it stretched, framed, crated and shipped to Miami Beach for the spotlight of a focus booth in this show.

When it arrives, it has been damaged in transit by the shipper, who has clearly ignored the DO NOT LAY FLAT markings on the crate. There are two huge gouge holes on the crate, which in turn have worked their way through the protective wood, board and plastic protection around the linen painting to just barely kiss the back of the painting with a sharp steel tooth of a yellow gear transport and bite the linen to leave a mark, almost invisible, on the canvas, and the tiniest of wounds to the paint itself.

Two of them, as if a gigantic snake had brushed the rear of the painting with needle-like teeth. Two tiny pin-like pricks... almost invisible to the eye, but not to the ethics of a decent art dealer.

Within minutes Aldo Castillo has a conservation restorer on the line. He will come tomorrow morning to assess the damage and repair it on site. Sheila's investment in this yet unsold painting continues.

And so does this report from MIA... tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

WaPo Job Posting for Art Critic

From: Jennifer Crandell
Sent: 01/12/2011 05:53 PM EST
To: NEWS - All Newsroom
Subject: Job Posting: Art Critic

The Washington Post is looking for an outstanding visual art critic. This position requires a deep and ranging knowledge of art, a passion for it and an ability to convey that expertise to readers in an exciting and accessible way. The critic will be charged with reviewing the important Washington shows, and staying abreast of innovations and shifts in the arts scene nationally and in a city that treasures the arts, and has more museums than almost any other major metropolitan area. This is a high-profile, nationally recognized platform for powerful arts journalism.

Boldness, imagination and a willingness to confront controversy are requisites. This job also requires an ability to report and write news about art on deadline, as well as develop a formidable Web presence. We want a person with vision and depth of thought to carry on the Post's long tradition of brilliant art criticism. Interested candidates should please contact Rich Leiby (x 7325) or Peter Perl (x6188) by Jan. 18.
Interesting that three different friends at the WaPo managed to send me this within minutes of it being sent...

A while back I told you that there were three scenarions for the replacement of Blake Gopnik and in order of probability the three scenarios are:

1. WaPo gets a replacement for Gopnik from "in-house" by filling the position with someone already in the employment of the WaPo.

2. WaPo contracts a local DMV writer to contribute museum reviews and he/she shares the load with Dawson, already a contracted freelancer.

3. WaPo hires an outsider art critic from another newspaper below the "newspaper food chain" from the WaPo (same as they did with Gopnik).

I also told you that scenario one is the most probable because it is the least costly to the WaPo. By replacing Gopnik with a critic already in the employ of the WaPo, salary negotiations are easier, and the WaPo saves on moving expenses as well as travel expenses in interviewing applicants from outside the area. It also makes the paperwork a lot easier and in the end the payroll is one less as no one has had to be hired in order to replace Gopnik. If this scenario is the principal one, then this would be good news for the DMV art scene, as the logical replacement for Gopnik would be O'Sullivan. And he is already well-versed in the DMV art scene, knows everyone and everyone knows him, and would just have to move his desk from Weekend to Style. Cost to the WaPo?: A well-deserved pay raise bump to O'Sullivan. Cost to O'Sullivan?: He may end up writing reviews for both Style and Weekend and doubling his work load (and thus his paycheck?). Or Weekend would hire a freelancer to do some random visual art reviews every couple of months or so. An interesting twist to this scenario would be if Style got Dr. Claudia Rousseau, who (a) writes for the Gazette, which is owned by the Post and thus already within the Post financial borg, and (b) comes with a respectable and award winning provenance for critical art writing derived from many years of writing about art (in Spanish) for Latin American newspapers and locally for the Gazette, (c) she is a respected college professor on the subject of art and art history, and (d) would add some highly needed diversity to the ranks of Style critics. This internal email seems to add some meat to my guessing that the Gopnikmeister's replacement might/will come from "inside" the WaPo Borg.

Scenario two is the next most probable because it ends with a couple of freelancers (not Post employees) sharing the Gopnik load for Style. That means they save on insurance, 401(k), etc. If scenario two is the one, then one of these guys/gals is the pool of DMV art critics and artsy writers (in no particular order): Jeffry Cudlin, Claudia Rousseau, Maura Judkis, John Anderson, Kriston Capps, Kevin Mellema, John Blee, JW Mahoney, Lou Jacobson (he'd only do photography reviews), etc. and maybe some of those random names that show up once in a while in the back of the magazine reviews in the national artzines. The top two choices?: Cudlin or Rousseau. They are both award winning critics, well-known and respected in the DMV and I'm somewhat sure that they'd be interested in the job. Because of Cudlin's superb performance as a curator at the AAC, Cudlin is a double threat for moving up the food chain in the better paid curatorial food chain, and maybe he's more interested in following that line, but he'd still make an excellent Gopnik-replacement local choice (but not sure if he could do both jobs at once). Rousseau's strong points are discussed in the previous scenario, and also make her a formidable choice (if she's interested in the job). Because of Cudlin's success as a curator, I think Jeffry is probably more in tune with moving up the curatorial food chain (are you listening Hirshhorn?) and thus advantage Rousseau.

Scenario three is the least likely because it is the most expensive and time intensive for the Post. The new hire would have to be lured away from another newspaper, and be hired as a Post employee with all rights and benefits. This seems a long shot in this financially austere environment where the WaPo is early-retiring and letting go people of left and right. Four wild assed guesses: Fabiola Santiago from the Miami Herald, Alan Artner from the Chicago Tribune, Robert Pincus (formerly of the San Diego Union-Tribune) and Regina Hackett (formerly of the Seattle P.I.). My heart would be with Regina.

Comments welcomed; I am sure that I skipped some potential names in scenario two.

New Drawings

Here are some of the new works that I'm be taking to the Miami International Art Fair (MIA), which opens Thursday night at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Supergirl Flying Naked


Supergirl Flying Naked. Charcoal on Paper. 4.75 x 40 inches.

The Lilith, Running Away from Eden

The Lilith, Running Away from Eden. Charcoal on paper. 39 x 10 inches.

Eve, Running Away from Eden

Eve, Running Away from Eden. 22 x 18 inches. Charcoal on Paper.

Eve, Agonizing Over The Sin

Eve, Agonizing Over The Sin. Charcoal on Paper. 13 x 49 inches.

Adam's First Night Outside of Eden - Adam Alone

Adam's First Night Outside of Eden (Adam Alone While The Great Owl Watches).
8.5 x 22 inches. Charcoal on Paper.

Airborne
Flying on Facebook - a cartoon by F. Lennox Campello c.2009
Heading down to Miami Beach to participate in the second annual Miami International Art Fair at the MB Convention Center and also to hang around with my parents. If you want to score some free passes to the fair, send me an email and I will email them to you.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Linn Meyers drawing at the Katzen

Linn Meyers: A Very Particular Moment "responds to the architecture of the museum by covering the walls with hand-drawn, repetitive, geometric lines—creating a hypnotic, meditative space. Meyers will spend two weeks in the museum creating her largest temporary drawing to-date on a 23 ft x 32 ft. wall in the museum’s third floor gallery."

The American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Admission is free. For more information, call 202-885-1300 or look on the Web here.

Monday, January 10, 2011

MIA

Later this week I'll be heading down to Miami Beach to participate in the second annual Miami International Art Fair at the MB Convention Center and also to hang around with my parents. If you want to score some free passes to the fair, send me an email and I will email them to you.

If I have time, later I will post some of the new 2011 drawings that I've created for this fair.

Draw from the model

I'm always being asked by artists where they can go and draw from the live model. There are many places in the DMV where one can just show up, or sign up and draw from the live model.

One cool place is the Del Ray Artisans Gallery. These sessions operate on a drop-in basis so there is no need to register in advance. Bring your supplies and join them at the gallery to draw or paint their live models. They don't supply easels - only plenty of chairs - but you are welcome to bring your own if you want to use one. All skill levels are welcome.

Gesture Sessions (two hours)

Come to the gesture sessions to loosen up and participate in a fun, fast-paced drawing experience. These two-hour sessions are composed primarily of series of dynamic 1-5 minute poses. One or two favorite poses may be revisited for 10-15 minutes at the end of each session.

Short Pose Sessions (two or three hours)

Short pose sessions are made up entirely of poses lasting 5-15 minutes. These sessions are a wonderful way to get in lots of drawing practice with a wide variety of poses.

Short/Long Pose Sessions (three hours)

The three-hour short/long pose sessions start with some short 1-5 minute warm-up poses and progressively move into longer poses lasting 10-45 minutes. These sessions provide a great opportunity to hone your drawing and observation skills.

Long Pose Sessions (two or three hours)

For people wanting to spend an extended amount of time on a pose, go to their long pose sessions. These sessions will be composed of two long poses with perhaps a few warm-ups at the start. Please no acrylics or oils; pastels, watercolor and ink are welcome.

The fee for each three-hour session is $8 for DRA members and $10 for non-members. Two-hour sessions are $6 for members and $8 for non-members. Please check the Del Ray Artisans calendar www.thedelrayartisans.org for upcoming dates and times. If you have any questions, please contact Katherine Rand at 703.836.1468 or DRA.LifeDrawing@gmail.com.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Rousseau on Michael Enn Sirvet

Claudia Rousseau on Michael Enn Sirvet at Reyes + Davis Gallery

The solo exhibit of Michael Enn Sirvet’s sculpture at Reyes + Davis Gallery (923 F St NW) has been extended to January 15, 2011. Thus, those who haven’t seen it still have a week to see this extraordinary work.

Sirvet’s trajectory over the past few years has been exactly that: extraordinary. I first saw and reviewed his work at the Glenview Mansion in Rockville in June 2004, impressed by his combination of organic shapes, exquisite craft and mathematical brilliance. Since then, the core of his practice remains the same, but the challenges he sets himself, and the risks he’s willing to take to achieve them, have grown and changed. This is perhaps the best thing we can say about an artist—that he/she is working in a trajectory, new things building on what came before, new creativity coming out of a thorough investigation of each new idea, and going forward with that.

Sirvet is a structural engineer by training and employment for a decade before he decided to go full time as an artist in 2008. It is evident to even the casual observer that this background both informs and strengthens his art work. Nothing is haphazard. Everything is carefully planned, organized and impeccably created.

Yet, there’s a wild side to this artist, one that relates to the woods and the backcountry. And that’s here too. Leaf forms made of aluminum, which also look like frozen fire. Hanging pieces that recall beehives in the perfection of their structure, but are also industrial in their materials. Wood, aluminum, brass, bent to remake the hidden perfection of nature evident in works whose aesthetic is thoroughly grounded in it.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Art image of the day again (after tonight's shocker)...

seattle seahawks
And perhaps the biggest playoff upset in football history?

Friday, January 07, 2011

The Power of the Web

Remember when I complained here that I couldn't find Naranja Agria anywhere in the DMV?

Well, today when I got home I received the pleasant surprise of having a gallon of the stuff delivered to my front door from CubanFoodMarket.com and a gift from one of you who has been thanked separately.

Do I have the nicest friends on the planet or what?

I see more yummy recipes coming in the future.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

In Unison: 20 Washington, DC Artists

Next week the Kreeger Museum will open In Unison: 20 Washington, DC Artists, an exhibition derived from a monoprint project initiated by DC artist Sam Gilliam.

Gilliam "invited 19 established and respected painters, sculptors, printmakers, digital media and installation artists working in different styles, to join him in creating several print portfolios. Each made a set of five monoprints, one of which was chosen for the show by Sam Gilliam, Judy A. Greenberg, Director of The Kreeger Museum, Marsha Mateyka of the Marsha Mateyka Gallery and Claudia Rousseau, art critic and art historian."

As stated by Rousseau, “Creating a group portfolio and exhibiting together express the ideas of unity and identity that are underlying motives of the project, and which are vital to sustaining a thriving artistic community.”

The exhibition will be on view at The Kreeger Museum from January 15 – February 26, 2011. The invited artists are:

▪ bk.iamART.Adams
▪ Akili Ron Anderson
▪ Sondra N. Arkin
▪ Paula Crawford
▪ Sheila Crider
▪ Edgar Endress
▪ Helen Frederick
▪ Claudia Aziza Gibson-Hunter
▪ Sam Gilliam
▪ Susan Goldman
▪ Tom Green
▪ Martha Jackson-Jarvis
▪ Walter Kravitz
▪ Gina Marie Lewis
▪ EJ Montgomery
▪ Michael Platt
▪ Carol A. Beane
▪ Al Smith
▪ Renée Stout
▪ Joyce Wellman
▪ Yuriko Yamaguchi

Millennium Arts Salon is the exclusive sponsor of this major exhibition at the Kreeger. Several well-known names in the list, plus quite a few that are new to me; I'm really looking forward to seeing this exhibition.

Wanna go to a DC opening tomorrow?

"Celebrate Gay Marriage" is the January show at the Foundry Gallery (located at 1314 18th St, NW) and it opens tomorrow.

The show includes juried works selected on their ability to visually represent the theme of gay marriage. Show runs Jan 5 through Jan 30. Hours: M-F, 1 to 7pm; Sat & Sun, 12 to 6pm. Opening reception Fri. Jan 7, 6 to 8pm.

Professor/Dr. Jonathan Katz, co-curator of now notorious National Portrait Gallery's "Hide/Seek" exhibition, will deliver a lecture on Sat. Jan 15 at 4:00 pm. Questions, please call 202-463-0203.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Blake Gopnik Replacement Application

(Via WCP)

Congrats!

To all the FY11 grant recipients from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

The grantees in the Artists Fellowship Program are:

Adam Davies
Alexandra Silverthorne
Alexis E. Gillespie
Anna U. Edholm Davis
Asmara Beraki
Avish Khebrehzadeh
Barbara Josephs Liotta
Brandon W. Bloch
Colin Winterbottom
Cory Oberndorfer
Eleanor Walton
Erik Sandberg
Gediyon Kifle
Janis Goodman
John James Anderson
Joshua Cogan
Judy A. Southerland
Kenneth George
Khanh H. Le
Marta Perez Garcia
Mary J. Early
Mia Feuer
Michael Dax Iacovone
Michelle Herman
Molly Springfield
Rik Freeman
Ruth Stenstrom
Scott G. Brooks
Tim Tate
Virginia N. Durrin

There are some new names (new to me anyway) on the list, but I'm happy to see that 10 of the 30 "must-live-in-DC" grantees are in my 100 Artists of Washington, DC book. That's a pretty good batting score. There are also several names on this list which will be invited for volume two.

You can pre-order the book on Amazon here.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Art image of the day (after yesterday's shocker)...

seattle seahawks

Makes me wonder: is there another professional (or any other athletic team for that matter) that actually has a "real" piece of art as a logo, such as the Seattle Seahawks have in the above Pacific Northwest art piece?

Sunday, January 02, 2011

The Reconquista ends

Isabella I of Spain, A detail of the painting Our Lady of the Fly, attributed to Gerard DavidToday is the 519th anniversary of the surrender of King Boabdil (real name Abu 'abd-Allah Muhammad XII), who surrendered the last Moorish Kingdom in Europe, Granada, to the Spanish forces of Isabel The First, The Warrior Queen of Castile and León, and Ferdinand The Fifth, King of Aragon.

The Moors forever left behind them the beautiful fortress of La Alhambra (where the story of Rapunzel allegedly took place) and the legend of the "last sigh of the Moor."

Legend has it that as the Moorish royal party left the city and headed towards exile, they reached a point which overlooked the city of Granada, and Muhammad XII, in looking at the city and the green valley around it, burst into tears. When his mother saw this, she said to him: "Thou dost weep like a woman for what thou could not defend as a man."

The conquest of Granada ended the 700 year Reconquista of the Iberian peninsula, eventually created the Kingdom of Spain, and most importantly, according to Cuban culinary legend, it also accounted for the creation of the Cuban dish known as Moros y Cristianos ("Moors and Christians") or white rice and black beans, which was created years later in homage to this final victory.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

MIA

MIA Art FairThe Miami International Art Fair is next on my radar as I will be flying down there in a few days to help Mayer Fine Art with the fair work and to hawk some of my own artwork. My Philly dealer, the hardworking Projects Gallery will also be there, as they were there last year for MIA's inaugural year and did gangbusters.

No DMV art dealers are exhibiting in this fair, which is very heavy on Florida and Latin American galleries. From what I see here, several galleries from Art Basel, Scope, Art Miami stayed behind and are exhibiting at MIA.

They figured out that this "new" fair did really well on its debut year and are hoping 2011 will even be better. More later....