Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy MMXI!

Washington HuskiesHappy 2011 to all of you... and don't think that I've forgotten to gloat over the Washington Huskies super upset over Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl.

Expect to see the Huskies QB Jake Locker, who ended his college career with this upset that puts the Washington Huskies on the road back to respectability, to go early in the next NFL draft.

Next for me? The Miami International Art Fair at the Miami Beach Convention Center January 13-17. Send me an email if you'd like some free tickets.


No, I don't know how that 2008 post got in here earlier... but happy New Year's from the Poconos!

Thursday, December 30, 2010


George Borden

To my next door neighbor George Borden, whose gorgeous "Flying the Potomac" photograph, was chosen as one of the 10 Most Memorable Images of 2010 by the CP.

Here's the CP's Top 10 DMV photography shows and the whole Arts Review issue here.

Book Cover: Who are they?

100 Washington, DC Artists
The book cover for the 100 Artists of Washington, DC book was chosen and designed by the publisher. As I noted three months ago:

The publisher declined my suggestion of one art image on the cover and instead is opting for a collage of thumbnails of artists' portraits of their choosing.
I had suggested to them that one strong art image on the cover would be best. They opted for the thumbnail collage because that has been the standard for other art books in this "100" series.

I suspect that they chose the cover thumbnails based on what their graphic design department feels are the "best portraits" from a portrait viewpoint. I had zero input into the chosen images, other than the initial version of the cover had two thumbnails that I suggested they switch (which they did). The artists on the final cover are (in no particular order):

Amy Lin, David D'Orio, Malik Lloyd, Kathryn Cornelius, Michael B. Platt, Craig Kraft, Marie Ringwald, Judy Byron, Byron Peck, Joseph Barbaccia, Victoria F. Gaitán, Lisa Brotman, Maggie Michael, Pat Goslee, Scott G. Brooks, Erik Sandberg, Melissa Ichiuji and Rik Freeman.

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

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

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Book Cover

100 Washington, DC Artists
Here's the book cover for the 100 Artists of Washington, DC book.

Book Details

ISBN: 9780764337789
Size: 8 1/2 x 11
Illustrations: 735+ images
Pages: 224
Availability: Jun 2011
Binding: Hard Cover
Price: $50

You can order the book from the publisher here. It will also be at most major DMV area bookstores after it is released. You can also get it at various other online book dealers here and at Amazon at a really good price here.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Galleys are in

They changed the name from 100 Washington Artists to 100 Washington DC Artists, but in any event, the galleys for the book are ready for proof reading.

I also have to cull down a significant number of images from the book. That will be the hardest editing.


Jacobson on MEG's Small Works

When the Multiple Exposures Gallery says it’s putting on a Small Works Show, they aren’t kidding. In an era when digital technology has pushed prints ever larger, none of the 39 photographic works in the show – curated by D.C art fixture F. Lennox Campello – is bigger than a breadbox, and some, like Karen Keating’s 1930s-snapshot-looking image of cabanas in Florida, are quite petite.
The CP's Louis Jacobson reviews the show I curated at Alexandria's MEG.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Corcoran seeks Canadian help

The financially precarious Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., has retained an outside consultant group to determine how the institution can continue to survive, and whether its operation should remain linked to that of the Corcoran College of Art + Design. The gallery and college also plan to lease their adjacent parking lot to a local developer, who will erect an eight-story office building on the site, which was once slated for a Frank Gehry-designed expansion to the Corcoran. In a recent telephone interview, the Corcoran's director and CEO, Fred Bollerer, said that the deal will reap around $1 million per year in rent, but will not provide more space for the institution.

While Bollerer declined to identify the developer until a deal is signed, he said that the Corcoran has hired Toronto-based consultants Lord Cultural Resources to develop ideas for the institution's future. The college has been growing, but the museum operation is "unsustainable," he says, adding that while there is no plan to divest the collection it is not clear what form the museum will take in the future.
Read the whole piece by Jason Edward Kaufman in here.

I have a few ideas of my own; easy ideas; homegrown ideas that I suspect will not be on "Toronto-based consultants Lord Cultural Resources"'s radar.

They know my email address.

Cuban Pollo Anaranjado

Just sort of made this up the other night when I had to use half a bottle of Naranja Agria (sour orange) juice, which is one of the key not so secret ingredients of Cuban cooking. I had a couple of bottles that I picked up in Miami last December. You'll need 3-5 boneless chicken breasts or any other boneless chicken (I wonder what they do with the bones?).

Start by making a mojo of 2 cups of sour orange juice (Naranja Agria). If you can't find it in the DMV area (I haven't been able to find it anywhere, as it seems that none of the Central American/Mexican focused supermarkets and bodegas around here don't carry it, as it must not be used in their cooking), then just mix 2/3 orange juice with 1/3 lime juice.

Anyway, two cups naranja agria, four tablespoons brimming with chopped garlic, and 2 tablespoons dried oregano. Put that in a big ziplock baggie with the chicken and marinate overnight.

The next day, start by making a sofrito. The basic sofrito recipe has green and/or red peppers in it, but I don't like either, so I skip them, but you don't have to. Here's a basic sofrito recipe.

I just heat up a few bottle dashes of olive oil in a large pan, some salt and pepper to taste, add one large chopped onion (chopped very small) and lots of chopped garlic and cook them until onions are translucent, then add some tomato sauce and chopped cilantro and that's a basic sofrito without peppers.

Goya Manzanilla OlivesThen take the chicken out of the mojo bag and add and brown the chicken in the sofrito.

Once it is browned, add the naranja agria mojo to the pan; it should cover the chicken.

Add a couple of laurel leaves and bring to a simmer and cook for about 30 minutes or so, then add olives (the manzanilla kind stuffed with pimentos work the best) and also add about half a cup of raisins.

If you want to eat this as a main course, then add a few chopped potatoes at this point and cook in low heat until the chicken is tender and the potatoes are done.

Otherwise make some rice (and a salad) and put the chicken and the naranja agria sauce on top of the rice.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Best guitar picks ever?

Nothing fancy, no fancy picking... but perhaps the best guitar notes in the history of rock...

Snow coming?

No problem! Especially now that we have this little monster in the garage.

For Xmas, three other neighbors and us chipped in and bought the Craftsman 179cc 24'' path Two-stage Snowblower. Now we're armed and dangerous.

You see, the Soviet Socialist Republic of Montgomery County does not clean our cul de sac street of snow until (generally) 2-3 days after they've cleaned the rest of the neighborhood. During last year's snow we were stranded and without electricity for several days.

Snow? No problem!


Tell me it isn't so...

Butt bras

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas 2010: The opening of the loot

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010
It all started the usual way...

But soon it was clear that the favorite Christmas loot opening thing for Anderson Lennox Franklin Lars Timothy Angus Pict Eric Florencio Brude James Tiberius Campello Anderson Cruzata Jaspersen Alonso Zaar Marrero Karling Comba Noren Dalke Hartsell y Lennox to do was to put the Christmas wrapping paper in the recycling bag...

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010

Anderson Lennox Campello, Christmas 2010
And towards the end it was: "look Ma, no eyes..."

Merry Christmas!

The Giving Season by David FeBland

The Giving Season, by David FeBland, Oil on Canvas, 2007

Friday, December 24, 2010

Bola de Nieve

On Nochebuena, a little short video of Bola de Nieve singing his classic Ay! Mamá Inés.

Mamá Inés (Mother Inés) was a famous Cuban character. She was an African slave brought to Cuba who achieved fame through the song that Bola de Nieve (and many others) sings. According to Juan Perez's wonderful website on traditional Cuban characters, the song (rhythm credited to Emilio Grenet) begins with "Ay Mamá Inés, ay Mamá Inés, todos los negros tomamos café".

Mamá Inés lived with her beautiful daughter Belén in the Jesus Maria neighborhood of Old Havana. Cuban songwriter Moisés Simons added the classical lines of the song, where Mamá Inés is looking for Belén.
"Belén, Belén, Belén en dónde estabas metía,
que en todo Jesús María yo te busqué y no te encontré".
And Belén answers her mother:
"Yo estaba en casa e Mariana
Que ayer me mandó a buscar."
Then, after that singers tend to improvise the lines...

Feliz Nochebuena!

Merry Xmas and Happy Holidays!

Anderson Campello Xmas 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Nochebuena tomorrow

Since tomorrow night is Nochebuena, I recall last year when I was preparing a classic Nochebuena Cuban feast for the in-laws. One of the key ingredients in the 24 hour marinade for Cuban roast pork is orange juice (sour oranges if possible).

When I was looking for the orange juice (I swear we had some) and couldn't find any, my wife suggested that I substitute it with some diet Pineapple soda that we happened to have in the cupboard.

As I dug out some oranges to get the juice out of them the old-fashioned way, I thought to myself that it is no wonder that one doesn't see too many Swedish restaurants around.

Tonight there's a sweets and booze party at the ole homestead, but the fare for tomorrow tonight:

Cuban Roasted Pork
Mariquitas with Mojo Sauce for Dipping
Sweet Corn Tamales
Broiled Yucca with Garlic Mojo
Broiled Ňame with Olive Oil
Moros y Cristianos (Rice and Black Bean Soup)
Cuban Nochebuena Salad

And from our family to all: a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Terrific 2011 to all!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kilt talking

Not only do I own (and wear quite often) a kilt, but unlike a lot of kilt-lovers out there, I am actually authorized to wear a kilt, which is an important thing in many kilt-wearing circles and useless elsewhere. And where it is important, it is ahhh... important. I've seen what happens when scotch and unauthorized kilt-wearing mix at the Celtic Games around here and in Braemar: drunk men rolling on the ground kicking and gouging.

I remember a few years ago when a tipsy Coast Guard dude told a very drunk retired Marine that he was wearing the Edzell tartan because he "liked the colors." Soon the two were rolling on the ground: the Coastie yelling blue murder and the jarhead (who had been stationed at RAF Edzell) trying to rip his kilt off.

US Navy Edzell Tartan
That's the official US Navy Edzell tartan, an officially recognized and documented Scottish tartan (as opposed to plaids), which is authorized for wear to all personnel who were ever stationed or worked at the now closed Royal Air Force base in Edzell, Scotland, where I served from 1989-1992.

I have a US Navy Edzell tartan kilt (8 yards)... maybe I should post a pic of me wearing it.

And technically, I'm just saying, I could make claims to being entitled to wear also the Lennox tartan, as my mother's grandmother on her mother's side was from Clan Lennox and eventually ended in the Canary Islands during the Clearances.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Faithful to Two Worlds

He’s an artist on his way to his second war, and he wants to make one thing perfectly clear: He is not a Marine who paints, but a painter who fights.

A series of Lt. Col. David Richardson’s bold canvases, with their bright colors and geometric themes inspired by Homer’s “Iliad,” is on view in “Trojan War Years” at the Ralls Collection, a gallery in the Georgetown neighborhood here. The show, through Jan. 29, demonstrates his abstract style, emphasis on color and design, and the considerable influence of his tours of duty in Asia.

But for the last several months Colonel Richardson, 45, has been studying Pashto in preparation for his February deployment to Helmand Province in southern Afghanistan, where he will work with Afghan security forces.
Read this fascinating Michael Gordon article in The New York Times here.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Now we know...

Blake Gopnik says:

"My move is now official: Come Jan. 15, I will be writing about art and visual and aesthetic culture for Tina Brown's 'new' Newsweek, and coordinating art coverage for her 'old' Daily Beast. I'm tremendously excited by the opportunities that presents...."
We all wish the Gopnikmeister the best in his new NYC gig.

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: Friday, January 14, 2011

The Crystal City Business Improvement District is seeking qualified artists to help produce a temporary, outdoor art exhibit featuring illuminated sculptures in the Crystal City Water Park. Selected artists will receive a grant of $5,000 to build and implement their concept.

Click here to download the submission packet.

Celebrate Gay Marriage

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

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.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

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

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

Artists' Websites: Dalya Luttwak

Dalya Luttwak has "been working since early 2007 on a series of sculptures depicting the root systems of various plants. The sources of these works are actual roots, which I literally dig up out of the earth. Sometimes I work from the roots themselves, other times I photograph, Xerox or make drawings of them in order to figure out how to physically and aesthetically make them into steel sculptures, how to connect the separate parts, and how to hang the final constructions from ceilings, on walls or place them on floors. The dramatic transformation of size, scale, and material lends the works metaphoric significance..."

Dalya Luttwak - Phyllostachys Aurea (Bamboo-Grass)
Check out her website here.

Music to wrap Xmas presents by...

Other suggestions welcomed...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Blake Gopnik's best art of 2010

"The old masters are getting younger by the day. 2010 was a year -- maybe the first -- in which all of modern art has started feeling safely in the past, fully museum-able. There were fine shows of older work, but they rarely had the force of exhibitions exploring the last century. Here, in chronological order, are 10 shows that have stuck in my mind."

Rousseau on BlackRock

Walking into the art gallery at BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown feels almost like a breath of fresh air. The current exhibit features the large canvases of Carol Brown Goldberg, Sondra Arkin and Greg Minah.
Read the review online here.

Friday, December 17, 2010


More about (e)merge here including an interview by Isabelle Spicer with Mera Rubell.

Seen on Univision

Modern Family's Colombian-born actress/model Sofia Vergara is currently doing an ad for Comcast on Spanish-language TV.

Something seemed a little off from the Vergara on the ad and the Vergara Gloria character on Modern Family.

I could be wrong, but it looks to me that Vergara's Colombian character requires that the actress dye her hair black and darken her skin; I guess to make her fit the stereotype that Hollywood has for "Hispanics/Latinos."

Apparently Vergara is a natural blonde and has hazel eyes. According to several internet websites, although she was well-known in Spanish-language TV, she could not get any Hollywood gigs unless she dyed her hair dark to force her into a more "Latina" look. In fact Vergara has stated that:

“I’m a natural blonde. But when I started acting, I would go to auditions and they didn’t know where to put me because I was voluptuous and had the accent - but I had blonde hair. It was ignorance: They thought every Latin person looks like Salma Hayek. The moment I dyed my hair dark, it was, ‘Oh, she’s the hot Latin girl.’ I loved it. I’d always felt a little ‘too much’ as a blonde, like a big-mouth version of Pamela Anderson. Being brunette toned me down a bit.”
I'm just curious if now she also has to tan her skin a few shades in order to fit the way Hollywood wants her character to look like.

Makes my head hurt.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Hamiltonian Artists Fellowship Program

Deadline: Monday, February 28, 2011

The Hamiltonian Artists Fellowship Program is now accepting applications for its 2011-2013 term.

This is the fourth annual open call to emerging artists to apply to their two-year Fellowship Program, aimed to aid in the professional development of contemporary visual artists.

Please refer to their website for application requirements, restrictions and forms. The application process will close at 6:00 pm on on Monday, February 28, 2011, and any applications received after that date will not be considered.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wild Assed Guessing

Yesterday I told you how Blake (and Jessica) got his job at the WaPo back in the days when the Post used to have a weekly galleries column, a weekly museum review and a weekly "Arts Beat" column focused often on local galleries and visual artists, and wasn't such an ardent member of the Fake News Industrial Complex.

Over the decade that was all pretty much decimated by Eugene Robinson when he ran the Style section for a few years. In my opinion, and as an outsider looking in, Robinson all but destroyed the visual arts coverage in the Style section, pretty much reducing it to the sorry state that it is today: the galleries column is about twice a month, "Arts Beat" is gone and the chief art critic writes ad hoc about museums and New York art shows. A studied review of old entries about this issue reported in this blog will reveal me reporting on many promises by the WaPo Style leadership over the years; promises which were never actually delivered.

And in 2011 I can almost understand why... after all, readers are leaving the WaPo and other papers in droves, advertising revenues are down, management still has a 1990s mindset in the 21st century (they fought the opportunities opened by the internet when they had an early chance), etc.

And in view of all this, I think that there are three scenarios for the expected replacement of Blake Gopnik.

I write "expected" because we're all assuming and expecting that the Post will replace Gopnik's voice, tasks and assignments with another writer. But even that is not a given in 2011, and I'm sure that someone at the Post, probably outside of Style (and instead one of the bean counters) will make a case for just using AP or UPI art reviews.

But I suspect that even Don Graham understands that as (arguably) the nation's second most influential newspaper, the WaPo must have a chief art critic. All the other big boy newspapers do. If you don't get it, you don't get it.

So 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).

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.

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), John Blee, 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.

Let's see how right I am, meanwhile I will be waiting for the Post to call me to be part of their search committee for the hiring of the new Blake Gopnik.

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

Oh yeah... the replacement for Givhan is easy: Philippa P. B. Hughes.


I never got the news release, which bums me out, but now that I'm back in the DMV from Miami, I hear that Leigh Conner and Jamie Smith, whom are the hardworking co-founders of Conner Contemporary Art, and Helen Allen, former director of the PULSE Contemporary Art Fair, are launching an art fair in D.C.: (e)merge.

I got the news from Kriston Capps over at the WCP, who seems positive about it (yay), as do I.


As Capps points out, the fact that Conner & Smith are involved, plus the endorsement of world-class art collectors like the Rubells, plus the former Pulse imprimatura of the very fair Helen Allen, all seem to add to making this new art fair a good one.

Key to the success of the fair are also how successful the organizers are in ensuring that the key DMV art galleries participate.


Easy... if the top 15-20 DMV art galleries, the ones that already do art fairs in NYC, Miami, Europe, Latin America, Asia and the Persian Gulf, participate in this fair, they will bring with them their jealously guarded collectors' list and they will mail their VIP passes to those collectors.

And those collectors will come, just for a curiosity, and also a chance to hang around with other DMV collectors and some international names brought in by Rubell & Allen. And if they come (which they didn't en mass to Art DC), then the chances of success for this fair improves tremendously.

And because the very cool Rubells are involved, and because they are nice people who are big names in the world scene who have nothing to do with politics, the press will be interested and positive and supportive (witness Capps); as if some big movie star was doing this; but in this case an art star (can one have two semi-colons in one long, run-on sentence?)

Another big improvement: the change from the Convention Center to the Capitol Skyline Hotel is a huge one. The "savings" are both psychological and monetary, from such simple issues as union hands at the convention center requiring to move your art in and out of your booth (at an added cost), parking issues, etc. Let's just say (coming from someone who has done a lot of art fairs): I am glad that it is at a hotel rather than the Convention Center.

The formula looks good.

Can I hear an "Amen".... somebotttty!

Opportunity for Photographers

Deadline: December 17, 2010

Call for entries for the Fifth Annual Photography Exhibition at the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop. Entries must be received by December 17, 2010. The Capitol Hill Arts Workshop is seeking submissions of any and all photographic processes, black and white or color, traditional or alternative, material or digital, time-based, performance based, any work exploring the act of photography. The exhibition will open on January 8, 2011 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. and will run through February 4, 2011. Cash awards will be announced at the opening.

The juror for the exhibition is Bruce McKaig, local artist and art educator. Bruce McKaig chairs the Photography Department at CHAW and teaches at Georgetown University and the Smithsonian Associates. He has exhibited nationally and internationally for over thirty years and every once in a while reviews a DMV show in this blog. For more information about his work, please visit his website here.

HOW: Submit the following:
➢ Three to five jpegs on a CD
➢ Image inventory list specifying title, size, medium, date and price (or insurance value)
➢ Contact info including a mailing address, phone number and email
➢ An entry fee of $25.00 for up to five images, payable to CHAW

WHERE: Please hand deliver or mail these materials to:

545 7th Street SE
Washington DC 20003

Things I don't understand

Now that Blake is leaving the WaPo and heading to his beloved New York, and of course we wish this erudite and polarizing man the best of luck in NYC (as we used to say in the Navy: "fair winds and following seas"), the question is: what is the big secret as to what his next gig is?"

Any guesses? New York Times, New York Post, New York Daily News, New Yorker, Newsweek+Daily Beast? One of the online outlets?

And are there any locals in the running for his job? The last time this happened and Gopnik got hired, was (in newspaper years) eons ago, when newspapers were actually hiring personnel.

Prior to coming to the WaPo Gopnik used to write for a Canadian newspaper. Then a decade ago, when the then WaPo chief art critic, Paul Richard, sort of retired, the WaPo began to look for a replacement.

Ferdinand Protzman was the critic who used to write the "Galleries" column back then. Protzman had (and still does) a formidable provenance, and prior to moving to DC and writing the "Galleries" column for the Post once a week (ahhh.... the good ole days), had bucket loads of experience writing for European newspapers and American magazines.

And from what I recall, he applied for the Richard vacancy, and when he wasn't selected for the position (given to Gopnik) he quit. At least that's the story which filtered down to the DC art world back then.

That left the WaPo with a freelance vacancy for "Galleries", and Jessica Dawson, who back then was one of the critics for the Washington City Paper and was also doing some online art reviews for the WaPo (ahhh... the good ole days) applied for and got the "Galleries" job.

But in 2011, almost 2012, the situation is very different, and I suspect that the odds now are stacked more in favor of someone already in the WaPo payrolls being moved to the job.

More later...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Blake Gopnik leaving the Washington Post

Just heard from a source a couple of hours ago (who has a source, who has a friend who works at the WaPo)... but couldn't get to Blogger, that it was announced at around 5PM (at 5:02 pm actually, with an email with the odd subject of "milestones") that their chief art critic, Blake Gopnik is leaving the paper and "is now taking on a new opportunity in New York, the place he has long understood and explained but will now fully inhabit." From the WaPo memo:

Blake Gopnik has also informed us of his intention to try something new elsewhere. Blake has given ten years of his insight and his intellect to the readers of the Washington Post, and is now taking on a new opportunity in New York, the place he has long understood and explained but will now fully inhabit. We are sorry to lose his voice on the matters of aesthetics and politics that he has interpreted in Washington's fine arts centers, though he leaves us with one of his greatest journalistic moments, leading a team in Style who have reported on and challenged the Smithsonian's decision to remove a provocative work of art from a provocative exhibit. His columns decrying the removal of "A Fire in My Belly," the video piece by David Wojnarowicz, have earned national attention, and stand with the many adventurous uses of his platform, whether profiling Washington's homegrown enigmatic sculptor Jim Sanborn, championing the electric blue splash of Yves Klein, or challenging Facebook to give its 500 million users more of a visual eyeful. He has set the bar high for his successor and leaves Washington a different cultural place than when he arrived.
O yeah... Robin Givhan is also leaving.

So the WaPo will be looking for a new chief art critic:
The Style section wishes the best to both of these exceptional colleagues as they leave the fourth floor. We will begin looking for new voices to join the collective of cultural critics who make Style a forum for breakthrough reporting and who will challenge the way we think, in the tradition that Robin, Blake and the entire team exemplify.
Next I will tell you what happened the last time that this happened (when Blake was hired).

Kinesthesia II

Click on image for details.

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 or 202-234-7103 x 1.

Monday, December 13, 2010

American Contemporary Art magazine

The current issue has a couple of DC area reviews covering Scott G. Brooks' recent show at Longview and Alexa Meade's solo debut at Irvine.

Read the magazine online here.

Jury Duty

Yesterday I spent a long but four fun hours jurying 555 works of art submitted to Old Town Alexandria's Gallery West call for artists for its 14th Annual National Show.

I had juried an earlier version of this show, maybe around a dozen years ago, and so it was fun to return and see the state of the nation from this unique perspective.

The quality of the entries was superb, and I've already eyed a couple of artists whose work I'm going to recommend to some local gallerists. Next month I will be awarding the prizes, as soon as the selected pieces arrive and I can award the prizes based on the actual work.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

DCist Exposed! sez (and I believe them) that they're pleased to open their fifth annual DCist Exposed Photography Contest. They tell me:

We can't wait to see your best images featuring local arts, music, food, sports and the unique culture of Washington, D.C. See the full rules here, then enter three photos for just a $5 application fee. Deadline is January 12, 2011.

We also want to celebrate five awesome years of Exposed photography by creating a special edition magazine featuring the winners from the last four years, along with our soon-to-be announced 2011 winners. Read all about the project on DCist.

We need some help to get this project off the ground, so head over to Kickstarter -- we're offering tons of rewards for your support. You can essentially 'pre-order' your copy for $25, or for a few additional bucks, get an awesome 8x10 print of an Exposed winning photo, credit in the magazine, and more! We know a few people who've donated and are giving their copy and print as a holiday gift to family or friends -- we approve!
This event is one of the best things that has developed (pun intended) to the DMV art scene over the last few years, so I hope that you join me in ordering one of these books and also in checking out the show!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Does your dog bite?

Is this not the funniest 90 seconds in the history of film?

This is where you go today...

The Washington Glass School has Artwork, Sculpture, Fine Art Furniture and other handmade goods by some of the area’s finest artists. See the new directions the artists of the Washington Glass School are moving traditional craft with integration of modern process, mixed media, and narrative.

Exhibiting artists include: Erwin Timmers, Tim Tate, Elizabeth Mears, Chris Shea, Allegra Marquart, Michael Janis, Nancy Donnelly, Syl Mathis, Robert Kincheloe, Sean Hennessey and Rania Hassan and others.

Music, Demos, Class Specials and more...

The Steel & Glass Sculptural Development class will also present their final sculpture projects and the adjacent Flux Studios will also be open - make it a day of art.

Date: Saturday, December 11, 2010
Time: 2:00 til 6:00 pm
Location: Washington Glass School
3700 Otis Street, Mount Rainier, MD 20712

Plenty of free parking...

Phone: 202.744.8222
website here.

for more info - call Washington Glass School - 202.744-8222
or email:

Friday, December 10, 2010

Anderson's Baptism

Here he is, wearing a traditional Cuban guayabera for his baptism...

Anderson Campello

This Saturday...

The Washington Glass School has Artwork, Sculpture, Fine Art Furniture and other handmade goods by some of the area’s finest artists. See the new directions the artists of the Washington Glass School are moving traditional craft with integration of modern process, mixed media, and narrative.

Exhibiting artists include: Erwin Timmers, Tim Tate, Elizabeth Mears, Chris Shea, Allegra Marquart, Michael Janis, Nancy Donnelly, Syl Mathis, Robert Kincheloe, Sean Hennessey and Rania Hassan and others.

Music, Demos, Class Specials and more...

The Steel & Glass Sculptural Development class will also present their final sculpture projects and the adjacent Flux Studios will also be open - make it a day of art.

Date: Saturday, December 11, 2010
Time: 2:00 til 6:00 pm
Location: Washington Glass School
3700 Otis Street, Mount Rainier, MD 20712

Plenty of free parking...

Phone: 202.744.8222
website here.

for more info - call Washington Glass School - 202.744-8222
or email:

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Wanna go to an opening this week?

artdc Gallery (no capital "A") will be opening an exciting new exhibition In the Present: works by Jenny Walton and Alexandra Zealand. The opening reception will be held December 11th from 7-9pm at 5710 Baltimore Avenue in Hyattsville, MD 20781. The exhibition will run through January 9th.

Washington, DC artists card deck

Remember this?

Well, I applied to it and was selected to contribute a card to the deck. I requested and obtained the Joker card, so now gotta get the brain cells going to come up with an interesting (and sexy) joker for the card deck!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Select 2011

I have been invited to participate in the WPA SELECT 2011 WPA Art Auction Gala will take place on Saturday, March 12, 2011 at 6:30 PM at 700 Sixth Street, an Akridge property. Akridge is providing a unique, approximately 20,000 sq. ft. space to showcase all the wonderful artwork that has been selected, while also allowing for 500 dinner guests.

The WPA Art Auction Gala is usually one of the hottest tickets of the art season, routinely selling out several weeks in advance.

For 2011 the curators are:

· Vesela Sretenovic - Curator, The Phillips Collection

· Frank Goodyear - Assistant Curator of Photographs, National Portrait Gallery

· Milena Kalinovska - Director of Public Programs, Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden

· George Ciscle - Curator-in-Residence, Maryland Institute College of Art and Founder of The Contemporary Museum in Baltimore

· Helen C. Frederick - Professor & Director of Printmaking, George Mason University and Founder, Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, Silver Spring, MD

· Claire D'Alba - Assistant Curator for Art in Embassies

· Annie Adjchavanich, curator at HSPACE Gallery, Costa Mesa, CA.

Details here. By the way... here's the drawing that I will have at the auction:

Drawing of Eve by F. Lennox Campello

Eve, Running Away from Eden. 15 x 39 inches. Charcoal on paper.
Circa 2010 by F. Lennox Campello

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: February 15, 2011

Open theme. Palm Beach State College. Juror: Wendy M. Blazier, Senior Curator, Boca Raton Museum of Art. Awards of $1650. Entries due: February 15, 2011. Exhibit: April 21 - June 9, 2011. For a prospectus, send SASE to:

Palm Beach State College
Attn: Kristin M. Hopkins
Gallery Manager
Division of Humanities, MS15
4200 Congress Avenue
Lake Worth, FL 33461 or download at this website.

Monday, December 06, 2010


Flying on Facebook - a cartoon by F. Lennox Campello c.2009
Heading back home today exhausted but very pleased with the ABMB results.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Art Basel MB week: Day Five (Last Day)

Pretty much a repeat of Saturday as far as the size of crowds, although for some odd reason, I was told that people were being turned away about half and hour before the fair officially closed at 6PM.

One of the main reasons that artists and galleries must try to participate in the art madness that is ABMB week is what I call the "wake effect."

The wake effect is all the follow on business, contacts and even exhibition opportunities that happen because of ABMB exposure. For the next few days, and even months, events related to ABMB will happen to the artists and galleries which showed there.

Throughout the day the crowds were fairly good, and MFA managed to sell a couple more of my drawings, as well as a painting by Norfolk, Virginia artist Robert Sipes and as the fair came to an end, a deal was reached between MFA and a Miami collector for a Sheila Giolitti painting.

Also a Palm Beach gallery was very attracted to the work of DMV artist Joey Manlapaz and requested that we put Manlapaz in touch with them.

After six the tear down begins, and an entire week of working long hours (mostly standing up) begins to take its toll and galleries begin to bring art down from the walls, re-wrap and package it all for the return trek home and vans and truck jockey for the best loading spots.

MFA will be back in Miami next month, as the gallery is participating in the Miami International Art Fair at the Miami Beach Convention Center from 13-17 January.

Yes, amazingly enough, about a month after 25 or so art fairs consume Miami, another art fair returns to the area, and last year it attracted about 22,000 visitors.

See ya there!

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Art Basel MB week: Day Four

Easily the busiest day of the fairs so far, with lots of crowds filling the tents at Art Miami, Red Dot, Scope and Art Asia in Wynwood and the streets around them.

At MFA, a day of highs and lows. Lows in the sense that there was a tremendous amount of interest at all levels with an inordinate number of near misses ("Wow! That's a really cool painting," she says to him. "I love it!", he adds. Looks at the price. "And it's really a good price"... they walk away).

Highs in the sense that this was the best day for sales so far. Sheila Giolitti sold two paintings, including her largest painting going to a collector in Washington state. MFA also sold a couple of paintings by Russian painter Alexey Terenin, and after an agonizing three separate holds with first right of refusal on Judith Peck's "Jus in Bello" painting (which has been selected for Virginia's CACVB "New Waves" exhibition early next year), the painting was finally sold to a Miami collector at the end of the night.

Also high in the sense that a local art advisor wants to hook up with Lou Gagnon to place some of Gagnon's gorgeous weather studies in some local collectors' homes, and also high that the curator from the Mobile Art Museum added Giolitti to his forthcoming "Southern Women" exhibition.

El GordoNext door at Scope, Civilian had sold out all six Trevor Young's brilliant paintings, so Scope has been good to all of them. I also saw some multiple red dots over at Hamiltonian's booth.

There was also some celebrity sightings: Alan Dershowitz haggling over some artwork and Raúl de Molina (El Gordo) from Univision's popular El Gordo y La Flaca TV show strolling around the fair.

That's him talking to the stunning Wonder Woman look-alike gallerina from Anderson Art Collective.

After closing, I headed out to Little Havana and with 15 relatives in tow, we invaded Versailles Restaurant for some late Cuban food. Even at midnight the place was packed and the food was (as usual) amazing. For desert: a torte made out of chocolate and mango.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Art Basel MB week: Day Three

Definitely lots more people today walking about the art fairs, if not necessarily buying the art off the walls, although there were certainly a lot more interest, loads more questions, lots more people asking for business cards and info on artists, some museum curators walking about, etc.

Jus in BelloAbout 1% of all that will lead to actual sales later on in the "wake effect" of being at an art fair.

Some of the close calls were of the "WTF" kind. Such as the fact that Judith Peck's gorgeous and intelligent (and signature piece) "Jus in Bello" was twice in a "first right of refusal" status; twice!

And one couple has come back three nights in a row to look at one of Lou Gagnon pastels.

MFA today sold two Sheila Giolitti resin oil paintings, a couple more of my drawings, and one more Andrew Wodzianski android gouache as well as the first Alexey Terenin oil of the fair.

Fight over Campello video of Che GuevaraAs I noted earlier, towards the end of the night I almost had my clock cleaned by an older British gent who was irate over my Guevara video drawing. A small crowd gathered as he threatened to hit me. Apparently his Cuban-born wife had been mistreated by Che in the early 60s in Cuba and also her brother had been executed by Guevara during his reign of terror as the chief executor of the Cuban Revolution.

Since this has happened several times this week, by now I have a "system", and soon he was all "explained-out" about the ying yang meaning of this complex piece. In the background, the gigantic figure of DC artist Andrew Wodzianski was covering my back while snapping photos with his phone as a curious crowd gathered. That's one of 11 pics he took.

Two more days left, although from my experience, Saturday is truly the last "real" day as Sunday is strollers day and pack out nightmare evening.

Art Basel MB week: Day Three (0730 report)

I'm almost punched out by a British old man who is married to a Cuban lady whose brother was executed by Che Guevara. He is offended by my video drawing of Che.

I calm him down and explain the piece to him. Andrew Wodzianski is in the background taking pictures; they will be up tomorrow.

Art Basel MB week: Day Three (1300 report)

I walked Scope today at noon and chatted with Civilian Art Projects's folks, dropped them two cold Bustelo's cafe con leche cans and took a walk through the fair. Civilian is showing DMV artist Trevor Young and has so far sold three of Young's gorgeous paintings.

Having walked both Art Miami yesterday and now Scope, I can offer the opinion that at least this year, Art Miami blows Scope away as far as the quality and depth of the art being exhibited. Both are also far better than Red Dot.

There is a lot of video in Art Miami, and a lot of video artists are now doing what DMV artist Tim Tate started doing years ago: taking the video out of the DVD player and incorporating it into sculptural elements. It's a lot easier to justify buying a video when you actually have it as a "showable" work - I think.

But anyway, Scope is somewhat suffering from the "so yesterday" look to a lot of the dated artwork being exhibited. To start, there's a disproportionate number of Chinese and other Asian artists in the fair, all showing the kind of work that was the rage of the art fairs three, four years ago, but that is now so diluted and overexposed that all that it gets is a glance. Then you realize (after talking to someone who knows this) that Art Asia and Scope are together under the same tent and sharing the same floor!

So all the Asian art is actually the Art Asia Art Fair and not the Scope Art Show, but nearly everyone that I talked to was as confused as I was: I thought it was all Scope!

In the real Scope there's also an abundance of artwork that appropriates Marylin Monroe's iconic images and puts them into glittery, shiny surfaces, odd surfaces, fill-in-the-blank surfaces, etc.

It is mostly crap, with the exceptional work of Romero Fudyma at Gallery Biba. Fudyma's sculptural approach to Monroe takes the icon to a stereographic three dimensions that has a hypnotizing effect.

There is also a lot of "angry artist" writing on the wall "art" -- sort of "so last century" work by a couple of European galleries. Speaking of writing, a Costa Rican gallery has a series of blackboards with chalk writing on them with repeated sentences as one would find in the old days when teachers would actually punish a Bart Simpson type kid with writing "I will not be late for school" 100 times on the board.


Other blase and thankfully out of vogue artwork still showing up for some reason at Scope are the big-eyed 1960 Sears type painting of kids that were all the rage a few years ago and that immediately upon falling out of rage a few hours later disappeared from the art scene, but it is clear that at least one gallery didn't get that fax.

Rafel BestardOne of the best set of works at Scope are the superb paintings by Rafel Bestard at Barcelona's Galeria Contrast. These gorgeous, sexy paintings are worth the trip to Scope alone!

There's a moist sensuality to Bestard's treatment of the subject matter, coupled with a photographic artifice that fools the eye, and which upon closer inspection reveals unexpected textural qualities that almost denies the first photorealism impression.

The sense of sensuality of the works on exhibit also have a strong dose of danger attached to them. Are these wet dreams or are they nightmares? Is the dreamer a frustrated sexpot or a dangerous psychopath?

My suggestion to the 2011 Scope gallery selection committee is simple: Shoot for a 50% refresh rate of new galleries; you need some new blood and need to adjust your rudder to 2011.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Art Basel MB week: Day Two

The fairs are all in full swing now, and Wynwood is traffic-jammed with people as I get dropped off at Red Dot for another day of art fairing.

In the early afternoon, a couple who had been there on opening night returns and acquires another one of my drawings. The piece will have to make a return trip to the DMV in order to be shipped to them. Soon after that a gorgeous Rosemary Feit Covey wood engraving finds a home in a California collection.

The well-known Texas video collector returns and kidnaps me to Art Miami across the street to show me her latest acquisition, and I swing by Chicago's Catherine Edelman Gallery, which is showcasing Tim Tate's self-contained video installations. There's already one red dot when I get there. The owner approaches me and asks if I'm familiar with Tate's work. I smile and respond yes. She says something along the lines of how everybody seems to know Tate.

I return across the street and my daughters have arrived, and almost immediately they depart and start touring the fairs. Meanwhile, Andrew Wodzianski, who is walking Art Basel in Miami Beach, texts me that he just ran into Steve Martin.

Over at Red Dot, Miami's Oxenberg Fine Art, which is also showcasing Tim Tate's videos, has also sold one of the self-contained video sculptures. Tate is having a good day at ABMB.

AT 6PM the booze starts pouring and this time is free margaritas for the crowds. The alcohol does little to loosen purses, although I do help to sell a couple more of my drawings.

A TV crew from Art Miami TV shows up and they are taken by Sheila Giolitti's luminous resin paintings and want to do a piece on them. Giolitti is a little nervous about being interviewed on TV and so she downs a beer to calm her nerves. The crew shoots a long clip on her and her work.

By 8PM my feet are killing me and my daughters and I head back to Hollywood for a Thai dinner on the beach.

Wanna go to a DC opening tomorrow?

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Art Basel MB week: Day One

I arrive at 11 am and we take down the Rosemary Feit Covey triptych that we had laboriously set up the day before and replace them with some of Covey's strong signature pieces; it's just a gut feeling.

The day passes through slowly, and we are across from the Bustelo coffee stand, which has free chilled coffee drinks and free Cuban coffee all day long. Gallerists and dealers from Scope next door keep sneaking in through the tent's side door to grab free coffee.

Somewhere in the early afternoon MFA sells another Michael Fitts painting and I get into an almost fist-fight over the Che Guevara video piece. Later that day a well-known video collector from Texas drops by and MFA owner Sheila Giolitti sells her a video, sight unseen, by Norfolk video artist John Miles Runner.

DC artist Trevor Young, who is with Civilian Projects over at Scope, drops by and we chat about the NPG David Wojnarowicz controversy back in DC, about William Sickert, and about the arbitrary choosing of 22 seconds as the max time sample for audio. Young has sold three paintings so far at Scope and is having a well-deserved super fair.

At 6PM free tequila drinks begin to be served and now the invasion from Scope is in full mass as Scope artists and dealers use Red Dot's side door to sneak in and grab a free drink.

Bad Hair Day II (Sue Richards)Later that night, the crowd thickens and Lynnvale's Lou Gagnon's elegant landscapes start to get a lot of attention from the Wednesday night crowd. At some point after that, Andrew Wodzianski cracks the ice and one of his "Android Series" (Bad Hair Day II (Sue Richards)) pieces finds a home with a Miami collector.

As the night moves, another Michael Fitts painting is sold and almost immediately I sell my Frida Kahlo homage drawing (done at the last possible minute), to one of the DMV's best known art collecting couples.

At seven the fair closes and I drive to Hialeah to pick up my daughter Vanessa at the airport and drive her to cousin Jorge's fortress house in Little Havana. When she arrives, she's hungry and Jorge feeds her sopa de chicharos.