Friday, July 31, 2009


Flying on Facebook - a cartoon by F. Lennox Campello c.2009
Heading back home today... have spent three of the last four weeks in California and Nevada; but today airborne from Vegas to DC, with a stopover in St. Louis, where Albert Pujols is a god.

14th Street Gallery Blues

Jessica Dawson has a really informative article in the Washington Post on the issue of the various 14th Street gallery cluster in DC that are facing relocation due to rising rents.

Good news is that G Fine Art is not closing, as previously reported, but relocating.

The article had a mistake on the monthly rentals that has been corrected since it was published. The corrections are at the top of the article here.

New BMA Curator

Doreen Bolger, Director of The Baltimore Museum of Art, has announced the appointment of my good friend Kristen Hileman as Curator of Contemporary Art and Department Head of this important collection. Currently Associate Curator at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, Hileman will begin her position at the BMA on November 2, 2009.

"Since its inception, collecting and presenting contemporary art has been an important part of the BMA's mission" said BMA Director Doreen Bolger. "Kristen Hileman continues this incredible legacy, bringing experience working with artists on collaborative projects and a familiarity with Baltimore's cultural community that will serve the Museum well as she guides our contemporary program for future generations."

During her eight years at the Hirshhorn, Hileman undertook projects on the work of Cai Guo-Qiang, Jim Hodges, and Oliver Herring in the Directions series in 2004, 2005, and 2006; organized the exhibition Ways of Seeing: John Baldessari Explores the Collection in 2006; and co-organized with other Hirshhorn curators The Cinema Effect: Illusion, Reality, and the Moving Image-Realisms in 2008, publishing an essay for the catalogue. Most recently, Hileman organized Strange Bodies: Figurative Works from the Hirshhorn Collection, which is on view until November 9. On October 8, 2009, the Hirshhorn will open Anne Truitt: Perception and Reflection, a major exhibition which she has organized and for which she has written the catalogue.

Hileman began her career at the Hirshhorn as a fellow in 2001, was named an Assistant Curator in 2003, and Associate Curator in 2007. Before joining the Hirshhorn staff she was a Curator at the Arlington Arts Center in Virginia. She has also held positions as an adjunct faculty member at the Corcoran College of Art and Design and George Washington University. She is a graduate of American University with a MA in Art History from the University of Maryland at College Park. In addition to her responsibilities at the Hirshhorn, Kristen has served as a juror for many exhibitions in the Mid-Atlantic region as well as a visiting critic at the Maryland Institute College of Art and at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has also published numerous articles and reviews.

One of Hileman's first projects will be coordinating the BMA's showing of Andy Warhol: The Last Decade, first U.S. museum survey of Warhol's late paintings. This five-venue nationally touring exhibition is organized by the Milwaukee Art Museum and scheduled to open in Baltimore in October 2010.The Museum has one of the largest collections of late works by Warhol in the United States and is a major lender to the exhibition.

Congrats to Hileman!

Artomatically speaking

Artomatic 2009 came to a triumphant close July 5, smashing records and making headlines. During the 28 days of art, music, and revelry, AOM had over 76,000 visitors to the 10th anniversary event - a new record high!

Need more proof that Artomatic 2009 was the hottest ticket in town?

AOM filled 10 floors and 275,000 square feet of space with displays by over 1,000 artists. They rocked it out, danced it up and had a grand ol' time with over 600 live performances, 20 artists tours and two socials. There were even a record-number of events for the younger set (aka artists in training), with 54 kids workshops ranging from dioramas to mobile-making.

I'm Also a Beauty Queen by Brian Lusher

"I'm Also a Beauty Queen" by Brian Lusher

And currently "The Best of Artomatic" is attracting attention at my old gallery, check out the most recent review here.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

DC gallery to close relocate

Just read at G.p. that the District's G Fine Art gallery will close at the end of the current show.

Update: Dawson in the WaPo writes that G will relocate, not close, as interpreted by me from the G.p. post. Relocation due to rising rent

Update 2: Capps expands on his post here.


I was on page 27 of the Washington Examiner last Sunday discussing the sobering work of Diane Kahlo at the current Frida Kahlo influenced exhibition that I curated at the Joan Hisaoka Gallery in DC.

Read it here (go to p.27): here.


I'm still out West and heading home tomorrow... it has been over 100 degrees every single day that I have been here (first week of July and the last two weeks).

They don't call this area the "Desert Empire" for nuthin'.

Opportunity for young curators

Deadline: 7pm, Friday 30th October, 2009

MARCO/FRAC Lorraine Award for Young Curators: Call For Applications - Organized by the MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo, Spain and FRAC Lorraine, Metz (Fonds regional d'art contemporain de Lorraine), France, the purpose of the MARCO/FRAC Lorraine Award for Young Curators is to offer participants the chance to execute an exhibition project to occupy MARCO's first floor and the exhibition venues at FRAC Lorraine. Entries will focus on the field of contemporary artistic creation and contemplate the participation of two or more artists.

The exhibition project will have a budget of a maximum sum of 30,000 Euro for each venue. The exhibition will take place from May to September, 2010 at MARCO Vigo, and from October, 2010 and January 2011 at FRAC Lorraine. Proposals that include works from the Collection FRAC Lorraine shall be taken into account. To visit the Collection click here.

All curators born in and after 1970 are eligible to enter the competition. If an entry is a group creation, one person will be chosen from that group to represent it and act as mediator with the institution. Curators will not be allowed to participate as artists. Entries must be previously unpublished and must contemplate the participation of two or more artists. No more than one project per entrant will be accepted.

The curator of the winning project will sign a contract with the Fundación MARCO and FRAC Lorraine, agreeing to comply with the functions derived from curating an exhibition, the characteristics of which will be specified in the contract. These will include the selection and location of the works, the design and supervision of the installation, and the writing of at least one text for the catalogue. The curator will receive the sum of 7,000 Euro, tax included, as an honorarium.

A jury made up of professionals of the art world will select the winning project and two finalists in November. The jury's decision is final. The jury may declare the award void should they consider this necessary. The criteria for evaluating the entries will be based on quality and suitability to the characteristics of the first floor of the MARCO as an exhibition space and exhibition spaces at FRAC Lorraine.

The jury will be composed by:
Beatrice Josse, FRAC Lorraine Director
Iñaki Martínez Antelo, MARCO Director
Kevin Muhlen, Casino Luxembourg – Forum d'art contemporain Director
Agar Ledo Arias, MARCO Head of the Exhibitions Dept.
Pedro de Llano, Art Critic and curator

The jury's decision will be made public in November 2009 and all participants will be notified.

Entries must be exclusively and simultaneously submitted, PDF format to the following e-mail addresses and, subject: 'Award for Young Curators'. In case of sending additional information, please send it to: MARCO, Museo de Arte Contemporánea de Vigo. Rúa Príncipe, 54. 36202 Vigo (Pontevedra), Spain and 49 Nord 6 Est - FRAC Lorraine. 1 bis, rue des Trinitaires. 57000 Metz, France. Dossiers received in only one venue will not be accepted. Projects must be preferably written in English, although Spanish, French or Galician languages are admitted.

The closing date for the reception of entries is 7pm, Friday 30th October, 2009. Dossiers received after this time will not be accepted.

For more information:

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Blee on Cleary

Lyrical, and full of grace and light, the recent pastels of Manon Cleary dazzle with their technical bravura at the Addison/Ripley Gallery in Georgetown (1670 Wisconsin Ave. N.W., Tuesday-Saturday 11 a.m.-6 p.m.) Who else can make a rat’s ear (literally!) into a visual poem? And who could possibly make it as beautiful?
John Blee is such an elegant art critic... and it takes elegance and depth of historical knowledge of the DC area art scene to know what a powerful presence Manon Cleary has been in DC for decades.

Manon Cleary photo by Tom Wolff

Manon Cleary photo by Tom Wolff

Cleary is perhaps the capital region's most talented incarnation of a Renaissance master whose brush translates the greatest achievements of Western realism into a modern contemporary dialogue and whose art mortally wounds the argument of those who claim that painting is dead.

Read Blee's review here and do not miss this show! It goes through August 22.

What kind of print is it?

Join Susan Calloway for Happy Hours in Georgetown abd some art education!

Today, July 29, from 3 pm - 7 pm: What kind of print is it? Caroline Adams, a local artist who studied printmaking at the Rhode Island School of Design, explains the different printmaking processes which produce etchings, engravings, lithographs, mezzotints, etc. Also, take 20% off all antique prints that day.

Susan Calloway Fine Arts
V 202.965.4601 F 202.338.1660

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Emily Lyons on DC artists

The advice for would-be collectors is endless: Buy the best art you can afford. Buy what challenges you. Buy what makes you feel at peace. Buy from artists you know and admire. Buy work your mind revisits days after you’ve seen it. Buy with a sentimental eye.

Whatever your strategy, art can be a wise investment, producing happy returns. If well-selected and cared for, its value will likely increase.
Read Lyons in Washington Spaces here.

Mellema on Best of AOM

Kevin Mellema reviews the current AOM pick show at Fraser. Read his review (scroll down) here.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Things I don't understand

Why do couples bring their kids to Las Vegas? From rugrats to pre-teens to teens all wondering around the halls adjacent to the gaming areas.

I guess this is how the gambling seed is planted on the young: shine all the pretty lights and sounds of gambling in front of their eyes, but forbid them from entering the area.

And as soon as the right age is achieved: booze and chips galore!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Las Vegasing

For the weekend anyway... below is the view from my room of one of the oddest cities on the planet and one of the Universe's most unique spots, visited, as I have noticed, by many aliens and mutants.

New York, New York, Las Vegas

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Trawick Prize Finalists Announced

Well, nobody told me or sent me a press release... but they are announced and online here.

Congrats to all the finalists! The eight finalists for the 2009 Trawick Prize Awards will be on exhibit at the Fraser Gallery in Bethesda from September 2 - October 3, 2009.

My bet is on Molly Springfield with Laure Drogoul also a strong contender.

Wiki Wars

Drawing up battle lines – art gallery takes on Wikipedia

The appearance of some of the world's most famous portraits on a website could create a legal landmark
Read about it here.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Opportunity for artists

Deadline: Friday, August 21, 2009 at 5:30pm.

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) in collaboration with District of Columbia Public Libraries (DCPL) is seeking East-of-the-River artists, including writers, to submit proposals for four prominent areas inside the new Benning and Anacostia Libraries which are expected to open in the spring of 2010. The proposed artwork sites provide artists and writers the opportunity to display their work in a large-scale format in a public building. Artist Honorarium: $2,500. For more information about the project contact Rachel Dickerson at or (202) 724-5613. To obtain an application go to (Public Art - Current Calls to Artists)

For more information about the libraries go to (DCPL Construction Projects).

ACA online

American Contemporary Art magazineThe new American Contemporary Art magazine is now online.

This art magazine is different (at least to me) in that it really covers the country (not just NYC galleries) and there are quite a few DC area gallery reviews and a "focus DC" article by yours truly.

Read it all here.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Cy Katzen

We are sorry to learn of the passing of Cy Katzen. He was a great man and a true ubersupporter of the arts, a good friend, and a great friend of DC area artists. He will be greatly missed but his name lives in the gorgeous American University museum that bears his name.

Desert days

I never expected the constant heat of the desert to be so malleable. One minute it is killing you slowly, and the next minute, and only after you've been hours inside an air conditioned space and slightly chilled out, as you step outside it envelops you in a baking oven of earth heat.

It feels really good, almost sensual as your body gives up the chill and warms up all at once. Soon your cheeks begin to tingle... a tingle like you get when you drink Bacardi 151 by accident thinking that it is regular rum and suddenly your cheeks go numb.

Wanna go to an artist's talk in DC?

Margaret Boozer: Dirt Drawings

When: July 25, 2:00pm
Katzen AU Museum Show dates: Jun 27 – August 16
Hours: (Admission is free) 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Tue–Sun
Location: AU Museum at the Katzen, 4400 Massachusetts Ave, Washington, DC.

Boozer is one of DC's rising uberartists and I will be visiting this exhibition (I've been seeing bits and pieces of it in Boozer's studio over the past few months when I've visited her). If you want to see how a great contemporary artist handles a very traditional media and takes it headfirst into the 21st century, go see this show.

Boozer is represented locally by Project 4 Gallery.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Wanna go to a reception in Baltimore this week?

School 33, click for a bigger image

Saturday, July 25, 2009 between 6-9pm for the closing reception of the School 33 Studio Artists’ Exhibition.

Opportunity for Artists and/or Curators

Deadline: December 30, 2009

The Sumter County Gallery of Art (SCGA) is now accepting exhibition proposals for its 2010 exhibition schedule. SCGA is an innovative non-profit art institution that features leading-edge exhibitions and public programs showcasing new perspectives in traditional and contemporary art that pushes boundaries in its treatment of materials and subject matter. Located in stunning galleries within Sumter's landmark Cultural Center, in a newly renovated state of the art facility adjacent to Patriot Hall, SCGA presents work in a range of media by influential national and international artists as well as local and emerging artists. The gallery will accept proposals from emerging and established artists residing in the continental United States for group and solo exhibitions. All media will be considered. No entry fee is required. Please submit a proposal that includes 10-20 jpg images numbered on a CD/DVD. Please include a hard copy of the numbered image checklist (Include: title, media, dimensions, and date), artist statement, bio, resume/cv, and cover letter that describes proposed exhibit and scheduling information to:

Frank McCauley
Curator, SCGA
PO Box 1316, Sumter, SC 29151

Please include a SASE for notification and return of materials.


Apollo 11 footprint40 years ago today, the most amazing feat in human history occurred when an American civilian of Scottish ancestry set foot on the moon and became the first human to leave his footprint somewhere else than Earth (at least that we know about).

This was not only a magnificent scientific achievement, but also a spectacular source of artistic images and we first viewed our world (in a photograph) from another celestial body. The images and objects that those brave men brought from the moon are not just scientific paraphernalia, but some of our nation's greatest works of art.

I hereby call for the Obama administration to renew the historical Kennedy call for the exploration of space.

It can once again become the greatest scientific, explorational and artistic achievement of this planet.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Flying Cartoon by Campello
Heading back to the Left Coast for some rediscovering, scorpion-and-black widow-avoiding (and brown recluses) in the deserts of California for some sweating (it's a dry heat) and desert drawings for the next two weeks.

Those of you who have my cell number: for the next two weeks, until July 31st, I will be on West Coast time, so if you call me at 6AM my time...

More later.

Opportunity for Artists and/or Curators

Deadline: August 1st, 2009

The Greater Reston Arts Center is requesting proposals for exhibitions for its main gallery space for periods of approximately 4-6 weeks. Proposals will be accepted from artists, independent curators, or arts organizations.

Full prospectus here.

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: August 28, 2009.

The Easter Seals 2010 Art Competition is on and they're accepting works for consideration on an upcoming stamps. Works should be a vertical drawing or painting of a lily, in watercolor, oil, pastels, colored pencil, or computer generated image. Size limitations: no smaller than 8-1/2” x 11” and no larger than 18” x 24”. White or off-white stock is preferred. No entry fee. For more information, contact:

Easter Seals
Attn: Lisa Skaggs
233 South Wacker Drive., Ste. 2400
Chicago, IL 60606

Phone: (312) 726-6200; or check website:

Airport Tales

Five Guys BurgersI'm heading back to California, and this time I am flying out of Dulles, which has one of the most beautiful terminals on the planet.

Earlier this morning (I'm in Dallas now waiting for my connecting flight) I was starving by the time I got to my gate, and was pleasantly surprised to find that right across from Gate 71-73 there's a new Five Guys Burgers restaurant, one of the premier burgers in this Universe. And so I order their showcase slider with grilled onions, pickles, mayo, ketchup and grilled mushrooms. I get number 62.

The guy behind me in line (there's a large line as it is around 10:30AM and the breakfast crowd is too late for breakfast and the lunch crowd is beginning to agitate) orders a grilled cheese, fries and water. He gets number 63.

The scene behind the counter is in a frenzy of fast food cooking activity. The Russian lady who is taking orders is firing them to the three cooks behind them at breakneck speed as hungry travellers pass through her order point.

The two African and Central American immigrant ladies doing the cooking are working at a frenetic speed grilling burgers and frying potatoes and getting the orders ready and yelling out numbers as they are ready.

It is a constant process, as quickly as can be done by three people cooking all at once, but there's a necessary delay in cooking the burgers, and none are pre-cooked and there's a large number of people in line and waiting for earlier orders.

But in about 5-6 minutes, they're up to number 59; these ladies are busting their asses to move the food.

The grilled cheese and fries and water guy who is number 63 is clearly impatient; let's call him GCFWG for grilled cheese and fries and water guy.

He approaches the counter and shouts to the back cooks, "Excuse me, how much longer will it be?"

The little Central American cook stops packaging ready orders and comes to him, she looks at him puzzled. "What is your number?" she asks.

"63," he responds rolling his eyes, "I've been waiting for like ten minutes."

I'm trying really hard to stay out of this, knowing that I will fail. GCFWG is very tall and slim, wearing a very, very tight white T-shirt that showcases his slimness and very tight black pants with really ugly, clunky black shoes. He has one of those large man purses and those nerdy, black glasses.

"You're only a couple of orders behind," responds Central American cook lady.

He rolls his eyes.

I can't handle it anymore. "Is your flight departure getting close?" I ask as he returns to waiting.

He looks at me a second before answering. People aren't used to strangers addressing them in airports, or anywhere else for that matter.

"No," he says, "But this is ridiculous," he snaps, looking at the cooks again and pointing his little chin at them.

"How would you speed the process?" I ask him. "Looks to me like those women are busting their asses cooking as fast as they can."

He looks at me and I stare back, looking hard.

"Ahh..." he stammers. "They need more people."

Again, there are three cooks on duty plus a order-taker.

"How many more?", I press him. "One more, two more?"

He looks at me again, this time he seems a little worried. My number is called and I pick up my bag. I return to him. He is now really looking a little agitated.

"Did you decide?" I ask him. "One or two more cooks?"

"Ahh..." He's looking around, and his number is called. He picks it up and I once again come close to him, look at him and smile.

"I think that three is the optimum number back there," I say gesturing to the cooking area. "And those women are busting their ass," I repeat myself. Now the small Central American woman is observing and listening in.

"I got to go." He says very nervous now, and leaves.

The Central American cook and the Russian order-taker smile and continue working their butts off while GCFWG moves on, hopefully having learned a lesson in manners.


Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Frida Kahlo Show

Last night's opening was packed to the gills with people, and the attendance even surprised me a little.

In the middle of the announcements for the award winners, someone from the crowd suddenly piped in and shouted the most off putting and random question that can be asked in a juried show paying homage to the influences of a Mexican artist on contemporary artists.

"What about the looting of art by the Nazis in Europe," shouted a young woman sitting on the chairs reserved for the artists (she wasn't one of the artists and her question was essentially what I wrote above but expressed in a more rambling way). "I just found out about this and I didn't know that the Nazis had killed so many people."

I looked at her and she smiled.

The crowd hushed for a second, a little thrown off by this odd question, considering the context of what I was talking about and the place and theme of the exhibit.

I rolled onto a discussion about how any and all empires and empires-wanna-be's had always stolen the art and intellectual ideas of the conquered, I also gave her a little lesson in art history and brought the conversation back to Kahlo.

She had a Joker-type smile frozen on her face the whole time, but she stayed quiet after that.

Weird, uh?

In any event, the prize winners:

First Prize

Tanya Gramatikova, Tribute to Frida Kahlo II

Tanya Gramatikova, Tribute to Frida Kahlo II

Second Prize

Diane Kahlo - Las Desaparecidas

Diane Kahlo, Las Desaparecidas

Third Prize
Kathryn Cook art
Kathryn H. Cook

Honorable Mention
Katya Romero

Katya Romero, Petalos Negros

Honorable Mention
Marla McLean

Marla McLean

Honorable Mention
Nancy Pollack
Nancy Pollack

Honorable Mention
Priscilla Pompa Alvarez
Priscilla Pompa Alvarez

This is a very cool show... go see it.

The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery is located in the heart of Washington DC's U Street corridor at 1632 U St NW. Call them at 202-483-8600 for info.

Opportunity for Artists and Art Outlet are partnering with Halstead Arlington, a luxury apartment community in South Arlington, and the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, to present The ZIP Code Show, an event featuring artists and their relationships with their surroundings. The show will be held at Halstead Arlington, 1028 South Walter Reed Drive, Arlington, VA, 5:30 pm – 12:00 am, August 29 and September 5, 2009.

For the show, artists were asked to use ZIP codes and other postal code schema as a jumping off point for personal dialogues with the physical, biological, and cultural features of the earth. A team from Art Outlet and is curating their ideas and strategies into an polyvalent exploration of artists’ personal geographies, which range from the private sanctuaries of home to public memories and actions.

Artists will be on hand to talk about their pieces at the show’s two evenings, which will include indoor and sidewalk live art and performances, and yours-for-a-donation summer libations.
They are still accepting artist registrations. Find more information here.

Wanna show at Wolftrap?

Deadline: August 1, 2009

The Arts Council of Fairfax County invites the arts community to participate in the 39th annual International Children's Festival at Wolf Trap on September 19 & 20, 2009 from 10 am - 4pm. This is a brand new initiative and a great opportunity for our local artists!

They can accept up to 30 individual artists or artist groups. Artist applications will be reviewed by a panel of art professionals. The International Children's Festival at Wolf Trap is the premier international arts education experience in the United States.

You can download the Word document at this website or and e-mail them at

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact Jamel McKelvia, International Children’s Festival Intern, at or by phone at (703) 642-0862 x5.

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: July 31, 2009

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is looking for illustration portfolios from professional visual and graphic artists. This is the first stage of the process in attaining artwork to be used to represent the next spring festival. Cash awards available. No entry fee. For more information, contact:

National Cherry Blossom Festival
1250 H St., NW, Ste. 1000
Washington, D.C. 20005

Phone: (202) 661-7584; email:; or check website:

Friday, July 17, 2009

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: July 31st, 2009

DC's International Arts and Artists’ Hillyer Art Space is currently accepting submittals until July 31st, 2009 for its regional artists series of exhibitions beginning January through December 2010.


- Artists must be currently living or working from the Mid Atlantic Region (MD, DE, WV, VA, & DC).
- Artists seeking a solo show at Hillyer must not have been featured in a solo show in DC area within the last 10 years.
- All work to be included in Hillyer Art Spaces shows must have been made in the last 5 years.

For details and prospectus, please email Graham Boyle at or call the gallery at 202.338.0680.

Come to the opening tonight

Last night's talk on Frida Kahlo for the Finding Beauty In A Broken World: In the Spirit of Frida Kahlo exhibition at the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Farm in Washington, DC was standing room only and it went really well.

Tanya Gramatikova, Tribute to Frida Kahlo II

Tanya Gramatikova, Tribute to Frida Kahlo II

The Opening Reception & Awards is tonight, Friday, July 17, 2009, 5:30 - 8:00PM. Among the work is an amazing piece by Frida's grandniece on the subject of the missing, murdered women of Juarez that will take your breath away. Don't you dare miss it. Come by and introduce yourselves and say hello. This exhibition runs through August 29, 2009. Gallery hours: Wednesday - Friday, 11am - 5pm, Saturdays, 11am-3pm, and by appointment.

See ya there!

Grants for Artists

Deadline: July 31, 2009

The Ruth Chenven Foundation in Takoma Park, MD awards up to $1,500 to visual and craft artists living and working in the U.S. Funds are to be used in the planning or a craft or visual arts project. Film projects are ineligible. For more information, contact:

The Ruth & Harold Chenven Foundation
7505 Jackson Ave.
Tacoma Park, MD 20912

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: August 15, 2009

The Gallery at the University of Maine at Farmington is planning a juried exhibition of works conceptually in keeping with the mood and spirit of Edgar Allan Poe. To open in October, 2009. All media welcome. Please submit entries in the form of a URL link or send dvds (Please format still images as jpgs @ 150 dti; time-based media on Quicktime.) to:

Elizabeth Olbert
The Gallery at UMF
246 Main St.
Farmington, ME 04938

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: July 31, 2009.

The Chapel Hill Public Arts Office invites artists to apply for the 2009-2010 Juried Exhibitions Series. Original two- and three-dimensional artwork by selected artists will be displayed in Chapel Hill Town Hall and the Chapel Hill Public Library from October, 2009 through December of 2010. There is no application fee. For more information, go to .

Later today

Come by later today for my talk on the subject of Frida Kahlo: Her Art & Her Pain; it's from 6:30-8:30PM at The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Farm Center located at 1632 U St NW in Washington DC, phone 202-483-8600. Free & open to the public.

You can also get an early peek at the subject exhibition itself. Next Friday is the Opening Reception & Awards (from 5:30 – 8:00PM) for the Finding Beauty in a Broken World: In the Spirit of Frida Kahlo.

See ya there!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Art Installation at Tate Modern Leaves 23 Injured

Despite implementing the latest health and safety procedures, the Tate Modern saw 23 people suffer minor injuries from Robert Morris's Bodyspacemotionthings during its special re-creation at the museum this summer.
Participants in the installation were invited to negotiate seesaws, a tightrope, and other obstacles, and in just over a week some of them were left with a cut leg, a rope burn to the hand, bruised ribs, and a bruised shoulder
Details here.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: September 25, 2009

VisArts at Rockville, MD is seeking works of art that use new media and technology to eliminate psychological or physical boundaries; and, challenge a gallery's role as mediator between artworks and viewers. New media and technology have the power to eliminate conventional, artistic boundaries. Interactive art, for example, encourages viewers to complete the artwork by actively transforming it visually and conceptually. Artwork can be exhibited remotely, with only the concept (rather than the physical object) in a gallery. Likewise, a viewer may experience a work of art even if they are not in the gallery with the object.

Works considered: Artwork with at least one component that uses an electrical and/or battery power source, and created in the past three years. The work does not have to be a physical, gallery object. For more information or to apply, go to and click on the link in the Exhibition menu.

Manon Cleary

Manon Cleary

My Lunch with Booboo, 2009, pastel on sanded paper by Manon Cleary

One of the District's best-known, most collected and most widely admired artists is the amazing Manon Cleary, and next July 22, at Addison Ripley in Georgetown, from 5-7PM, she has an opening reception for a new exhibition of her latest pastels.
For more than thirty years, Ms. Cleary's often disturbing drawings and paintings have brilliantly represented her personal world in provocative, unflinching and iconic terms. A 2008 exhibit at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts referred to Ms. Cleary as "one of the leading American figurative artists of the past three decades". This exhibit at Addison/Ripley pairs gentle sky "portraits" with pictures of strangely engaging white rats. Each of the works from Rats and Skies, is developed by hand on sanded paper with an unmatched mastery of materials and technique. In addition, the gallery will present earlier work by the artist, including examples from her "Movement Series".
Cleary's ongoing contribution to the art world in Washington is extensive and keeps on going despite severe health issues that have limited her ability to work.

Don't miss this show; I won't.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Flying on Facebook - a cartoon by F. Lennox Campello c.2009
I'm flying back to the East Coast today in order to deliver a talk on the subject of Frida Kahlo: Her Art & Her Pain on Thursday, July 16 from 6:30-8:30PM at The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Farm Center located at 1632 U St NW in Washington DC, phone 202-483-8600. Free & open to the public.

Then next Friday is the Opening Reception & Awards (from 5:30 – 8:00PM) for the Finding Beauty in a Broken World: In the Spirit of Frida Kahlo.

I selected the following artists for the exhibition: Priscilla Pompa Alvarez, Sally Brucker, Mark Caicedo, Kathryn H. Cook, Veronica Ebert, Elissa Farrow-Savos, Amy Freeman, Tanya Gramatikova, Manuela Holban, Diane Kahlo, Lily Lash, Maria Lupo, Marla McLean, Laura Pallone, Judith Peck, Reginald Pointer, Nancy Pollack, Chrys Roboras, Katya Romero, Janna Stern, Henrik Sundquist, Yayo Tavolara and Helen Zughaib.

See ya there!

Thursday, July 09, 2009


I chickened out at 140 MPH last night on I-395 about 9:45PM. The little two seater that I got (an Eclipse) is supposed to go up to 160, and as I was all alone in the desert, I punched it and took it to around 140 before I slowed it down.

I drove back from San Diego and I am now in that blast furnace of a town known as Ridgecrest, California.

It is so hot.

Stimulus Closing Reception tomorrow

Head to Nevin Kelly Gallery in DC on Friday, July 10th for the closing reception of "Stimulus," a group exhibition of works by local artists meant to stimulate the mind and the economy. All works in the show are priced at $500 or less, many at limited-opportunity prices. Closing reception from 6-8PM.

Participating artists include John M. Adams, Sondra N. Arkin, Joan Belmar, Tanja Bos, Anne Bouie, Molly Brose, Mary Chiaramonte, Anna U. Davis, Jenny Davis, Thomas Drymon, Stirling Elmendorf, Pat Goslee, Emily Greene Liddle, Laurel Hausler, Eve Hennessa, J. Ford Huffman, Rosalind Kennedy, Mark Parascandola, Anneliese Sullivan, Ming Yi Sung Zaleski, Ruth Trevarrow, Claudia Vess, Ellyn Weiss and the kid.

Show runs through July 11. Go buy some art!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Yellow Moon

Drove down from Ridgecrest, California to San Diego. Miles and miles of desert-driving on 395, a huge C-5 circling and circling above the desert, weird twisted trees, then a gorgeous yellow moon as I turned into 15 south.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Trona, California

Landed at Las Vegas yesterday around 5PM, and after grabbing my bags I headed to the car rental, where, because of the holiday weekend, cars were scarce. That was a good thing.

Instead of my usual, "what is the cheapest, smallest, roller skate car that you have?" I ended up being upgraded to a Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder convertible! That was a good thing.

As I was headed to the California desert, I zoomed out of Vegas and headed south on Highway 15. And of course, because of the holiday weekend, about a billion cars were heading home to LA and the highway was bumper to bumper with "what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" weekenders. That was a bad thing.

The desert landscape at dusk was illuminated by a full moon, and at least, while the desert mountains and hills were visible, it was like driving through Ansel Adams' "Moon Over Hernandez." That was a wondrous thing.

I got to my hotel by 12:30pm and crashed.

The next morning I got up, jumped into my toy car and headed for my first destination; 30 miles later I was lost.

I ended up in a very small town (a generous description by the way) called Trona.

Trona, California must be one of the most ahhh... remote places in the American desert. It also has a tiny cafe, right on Trona Road, established in 1956, that serves some of the best shakes that I have ever tasted.

How does a small cafe survive for over half a century in such a remote place? On the wall there were a couple of photos of someone signing autographs. "Who is that?" I asked the young waitress.

"I don't know," she answered, "Someone who came by when I was little." She then asked the cook.

"George Clooney!" shouted the cook from the back. "He was here filming an episode of 'ER' a long time ago."

Anyway, this throwback in time had a dazzling menu of good old fashioned American fare (burgers, tacos, burritos and something called a "Texas toothpick") including ice cream and a lot of great milkshake flavors.

Trona, California: As a town, you are a bit rough on the eyes, but I salute your little town cafe.

Monday, July 06, 2009

A Priori/A Posteriori

On July 8, the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s exhibition space dedicated to the Corcoran College of Art + Design, Gallery 31, will open the three-part show A Priori/A Posteriori. The show contains work from current students and recent graduates, and is the result of an experimental class conducted in the spring 2009 semester, taught by Professor Margaret Adams. The show was created around a single concept decided on by the class.

A Priori/A Posteriori concept explores the root of ideas and knowledge based on perception, instinct, implicit and explicit memory. A priori suggests defining ideas as inherent, while the posteriori identifies learning through the act of experience. The discovery has been that the group’s work speaks from a central point, or slash between, the priori and posteriori process.

The show is broken into three installations: Instinct, Vision, and Time, each representing a different response to the group’s philosophical experiment. Dates and times are as follows:

Instinct: July 8 – July 11. Opening July 9 from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Time: July 15 – July 18. Opening July 16 from 6p.m. – 8 p.m.
Vision: July 22 – July 25. Opening July 23 from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Gallery 31 is located at the New York Avenue entrance to the Corcoran Gallery. Hours are from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Wednesday – Saturday, and until 9 p.m. on Thursdays. Admission is free. For additional information about Gallery 31, or for more information about the college, please visit

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Flying on Facebook - a cartoon by F. Lennox Campello c.2009
The kid is heading to the Left Coast for a week in the California desert... more later!

Casting Call for Artists

Magical Elves (the folks who did the Peabody Award-winning Project Runway, Emmy Award-winning Top Chef) and Sarah Jessica Parker (Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winner) and her production company, Pretty Matches, are teaming up for an hour-long creative competition series among aspiring contemporary artists who will create and compete to conquer the art world!

If you’re an emerging or mid-career visual artist with a unique, powerful voice that demands a bigger stage, here's their spiel:


We want contemporary artists. Your medium could be one of many (or several of many) – painting, sculpture, installation, video, photography, mixed-media – we want voices that believe in their art and want the world to know.

* To be considered for the cast, attend one of our four regional casting calls around the country, see below.

* Go to to download an application and see what you need to bring with you to an open call. GOOD LUCK.


LOS ANGELES - Saturday, July 11th & Sunday, July 12th 10:00am - 2:00pm at LAX ART.

MIAMI - Tuesday, July 14th, 10:00am - 2:00pm at Fredric Snitzer Gallery.

CHICAGO - Thursday, July 16th, 10:00am - 2:00pm at the School of the Art Institute : Sullivan Galleries : 33 State Street.

NEW YORK - Saturday, July 18th & Sunday, July 19th 10:00am - 2:00pm at White Columns.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

The Final Artomatic Top 10 Artists of 2009

Happy 4th of July! I've been working on this list forever, and superbusy on other stuff (more on those news later); but here it is!

With around 1,000 artists at AOM, it is pretty difficult, if not truly impossible to pick a list of the top 10 artists there and immediately piss off 990.

To make things easier for me, this year I decided to limit my own personal recommendations to artists whose work I am/was not overly familiar with or whose work I had not see before; so no Tim T., no Laurel L., no Kelly T., no Michael J., etc. in this list.

Canpello's top 10 AOM artists are listed in alphabetical order.

Sarah BloodSarah Blood - Space 513 0n the 5th floor. This British artist has some of the most memorable work in AOM this year. Her work is elegant and sophisticated, and easily amongst the best 3D work in the show, but she is in an universe by herself when it comes to the marriage of neon to glass and sculpture.

When one views her work, the viewer is left amazed not only by the technical skill and dexterous facility with which she handles the medium, but also how she makes an inherent gaudy and repetitive component (such as neon is) seem fresh and cool each time. Hers is the best neon work that I have ever seen.

David D'Orio feederDavid D'Orio. His work is at space 909 on the 9th floor. Add him to the list of amazing glass artists who are reinventing the genre one piece at a time. The latest from his "Feeder" project (detail to left) stands out in the 2009 Artomatic already showcasing the work of some very good glass artists from the area and Great Britain.

It is no secret that the Greater DC area has become one of the great fine art glass magnets in the world, and in this abundant sea of glass talent, D'Orio's glasswork stands out in a singularly unique way.

This is no small accomplishment when one also looks at the breath taking work of the British glass artists participating in this year's AOM as well as the many Washington Glass School artists and students in the show. Glass was possibly the strongest category in this year's AOM and D'Orio's work still managed to stand out.

James HalloranJames Halloran - Space 809 on the 8th floor. I know that I am a sucker for technical skill in any genre, but technical skill alone does not a good artist make.

Halloran's paintings appear very simple in composition and color schemes at first view, but once you study them they rank amongst the best paintings at AOM that I have seen in years and showcase what a very good painter can do with a very restricted palette of colors. This is another artist whose work would sell well at art fairs.

Rania HassanRania Hassan - Space 903 on the 9th floor. I think that I know by now... and so I think that what Rania Hassan is doing in her ongoing marriage of knitting and painting is unique, maybe in the world. It sounds a little odd in words, so you need to see it to see what I mean.

It is not only clever, but also visually intriguing and breaks a very difficult three dimensionality aspect that many "painters" try to broach.

Jeannette Herrera's Blue Faced KillerJeannette L. Herrera - Space 210 on the 2nd floor. This blue face killer is all over the map with her artwork, and yet she covers that map very well. She makes and sells everything: T-shirts, buttons, stickers, skateboards, shoes, custom made frames, etc.

She is a GerhardtRichterian artist in the sense that her artwork is about what interests and makes her tick, not what the critics dictate. I love the energy and drive and zeal behind her work; it's like an artistic hurricane in violent motion at all times.

I know a lot of accomplished artists, now in the October of their careers (the best time for hurricanes) who wish they could find a way to rediscover 10% of the energy and intelligence that Herrera drives through your brain with paint-stained nails in each of her paintings.

Deb Jansen's installationDeb Jansen. Space 804 on the 8th floor. Seldom does a great artistic shout like Jansen's "Catharsis & Karma: An Open Thank You Letter to a Homewrecker" installation says it all for one artist, and as Jansen is a young artist, we have many years ahead to watch where she goes from here.

Having said that, her brilliant dedication and "this-is-not-a-revenge" discussion of the world's most expensive blow job as Jansen thanks the "other" woman who freed her from an allegedly abusive and destructive marriage was without a doubt, at least the multiple times that I visited AOM, the hit of the show, and it earns Jansen a top 10 ranking. I'll say it again: this alone is worth a visit to AOM.

Susan La MontSusan La Mont. Space 203 on the second floor. I know that I have mentioned this artist's work before, but AOM gave me the first opportunity to examine a lot of her work all in one place.

And while Dr. La Mont still has a lot of painting and examinations and thinking and work to create and do ahead of her, this Pratt Institute graduate's artwork shows the sophistication, elegance and artistic merit and weight that causes it to stand apart in the immense AOM world of painters.

Jessica Van Brakle - detailJessica Van Brakle. Space 916 on the 9th floor. When I was first exploring the 9th floor I almost missed Jessica's work.

Lucky for her, I was attracted by the work of Jenny Walton, and once that caught my eye, it was natural for me to be magnetized also by her neighbor's work. Vna Brakle's work is refreshing and very strong for such a young painter. If my fellow art dealers were to ask me about who to pick today and take to an art fair tomorrow and sell a lot of work, I would immediately send them to this new painter.

Megan Van WagonerMegan Van Wagoner is a prime example of what happens when you pass judgement on an entire show without taking the proper time to examine the show.

I've never seen her work before, and the first time that I walked by her booth I almost missed it, as my eyes and brain were beginning to hit overload. But it did catch my eye and on the second visit, following my notes I went straight to her space on space 811 on the 8th floor. Let me say it succinctly: this will be the artist whose work stood out as the most technically brilliant in AOM and whose presentation was the most professional.

It is ready for prime time and I bet that she goes places fast. I can dream of a show of her work next to Joshua Levine out in the Left Coast.

WelkerSean Welker. 712 on the 7th floor. This is an artist turning technology around on the viewer. When I first saw Sean Welker's drawings, I thought that they were prints. When I returned and talked a little to Sean, I discovered that they were each an individual drawing expressing Welker's interest in sugar skulls, matryoshka dolls, maneki neko figures and other odd elements.

Push the medium of drawing to a level where the artist says to the reproduction genre: I can do each one by hand. It is a novel twist on taking the short cut to everything. This artist will make DC look good all over the nation in the near future. Check out his sugar skulls here.

Tomorrow is the last day to see Artomatic; if you haven't been, and call yourself a member of the Greater DC area arts community, this is your last change to get there or have your membership in the community revoked.

You get a second chance of sorts in a gallery setting as my former gallery, Bethesda's Fraser Gallery continues a tradition started many Artomatics ago with Ms. Fraser's selection of her "Best of Artomatic 2009" with work by AOM artists Jennifer Bishop, Deb Jansen, Edward Johnston, Christine Keers, Andrew Livingstone, Brain Lusher, Joanne Mitchell, Molly Sheldon, Frank Turner and Andrew Zimmermann. An opening reception will be held in conjunction with the "Bethesda Art Walk" on Friday, July 10 from 6PM - 9PM.

I'm heading out West tomorrow... more from the California desert later, including my choice as the best artist in Artomatic for 2009.

Happy 4th of July! America rocks!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

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