Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Aqua Opens Tonight

Aqua Art Fair Miami

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

And the openings begin: ABMB Day One

Tonight was the openings for Art Miami, Scope, Red Dot and some other fairs, and I had a chance to stroll through those three and chat with some gallerists and artists.

Over at the Art Miami press lounge, the buzz, from some journos and locals, other than the street trees being "decorated" in shirts and tops, was Art Basel's "contraction" or how ABMB had reduced the number of galleries at last year's ABMB.

"I'm not sure if this is was a result of the economy," said a savvy Miami art writer, "Or ABMB throwing a bone to the satellite fairs."

He must have seen the quizzical Klingonesque forehead expression in my face, because he expanded by adding that the economy seems to have had a profound impact on the number of galleries applying to the satellite art fairs, as more and more galleries stay home due to lackluster sales.

"I know of a local Miami gallerist who sold a million dollar painting at ABMB last year and this year he didn't get invited back," he postulated, "And so he went to the next best fair, Art Miami."

Heads nod. "And yet, ABMB week has a record 260 art galleries this year," someone says.

"What's the art fair food chain looking like this year?," I asked. By that I meant to ascertain as to which ones were the top fairs. Another journo chimed in and noted that she thought that after ABMB, Art Miami was the best satellite art fair, followed by Pulse and Scope.

Heads nod.

"But Scope is in a real down spiral," noted yet a third voice, this time belonging to a local artist whose gallery is at Art Miami. Several heads nodded in agreement looking like a Nirvana video.

"And Red Dot is surprisingly picking up former Scope galleries left and right," added the guy who had coined the term "contraction."

"Uh?... why is that?", I asked, recalling that one of my own dealers had turned down an invitation from Scope and chosen Red Dot.

"I'm going to check this out over the next few days," he expanded, "But I'm told that Red Dot more than doubled its size from last year and that a lot of 2010 Scope galleries are now showing at Red Dot, especially a lot of Asian galleries."

"Free booze and food at opening night..." commented a new voice.

While there is free booze (all kinds of wines, Herradura Tequila and Finlandia vodka non stop) and food (be ready to fight) at Red Dot's opening night, in my opinion there's also a huge change for the better over the last few years. In fact, I would opine that this is the best Red Dot that I've ever seen and I know that Scope now realizes that Red Dot is breathing down their neck when it comes to the art galleries' food chain... and Red Dot has food and booze... heh, heh...

The two fairs, next to each other, still have huge differences. Scope seems to be stuck a little in a presence and feel that was cool and popular when everything that hanged sold; that's a thing of the past. Red Dot booths hang a lot of artwork.

And while the minimalist look of the Scope galleries may still show a once cool approach to art fair presence, the lack of crowds and lack of red dots and alleged mass exodus to its neighboring art fair, where hanging is a bit more relaxed (read that a gallery can hang more artwork in their booths), plus the fact that this year's Red Dot's booths are quite a bit taller than usual (affording more vertical wall space), may reflect the realities of the new art fair world.

"I think the days when an art fair director could dictate to a gallery what artist to hang are rapidly coming to an end," opined a local art blogger.

"What about Art Miami?" I asked.

"Art Miami has become the second choice if a gallery can't get into ABMB" was the consensus opinion, and my own walk-thorough showed a highly sophisticated art fair with a very good blend of art galleries and a sharp, elegant presentation in most of them, with a clear and surprising lack of trendy art and more of a lean towards commodifiable artwork.

I haven't seen Pulse yet, thus I asked about Pulse.

"I think Pulse has learned the Scope lesson and is making an U-Turn on its brand," opined someone and heads nodded.

I Klingoned my forehead and the opiner expanded, "Pulse is doing a great job of still appearing cool and trendy while its galleries shift to more traditional artwork that can actually be sold... check out how all of a sudden realism is all over Pulse."

The next few days will tell... meanwhile, over at Scope, I had heard some good buzz over Trawick Prizewinner David Page's performance; he's there with Baltimore's Jordan Faye Contemporary. Page's unique work really stood out at Scope. A couple of other DMV are dealers are also at Scope: Hamiltonian, Civilian and first time Scoper Heiner Contemporary, who was showing the amazing work of (e)merge wunderkind Avery Lawrence plus Elizabeth Huey, David Kramer and Jon-Phillip Sheridan.

Heiner has one of the best looking art fair booths of all time, courtesy of Lawrence's familial wallpaper, part of his "Moving a Tree" project.

There are no DMV galleries in Red Dot or Art Miami, although AM has two Baltimore dealers in their roster.

Tomorrow the hot ticket is the opening party at Aqua, where yours truly has been busting his keister for the last two days preparing for tomorrow night's opening.

Celebrity sighting: Doctor Quinn Medicine Woman is two booths across from Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art! Jane Seymour's artwork dominates the booth of her gallerist, and paintings, watercolors and sculptures by the actress and artist, who was there tonight, all 85 pounds of her, dominate the booth. Her watercolors are by far her best work...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Manon Cleary

I first met Manon Cleary's artwork sometime around 1993 or 1994. It was at an exhibition at Addison Ripley's old space behind the Phillips Collection. Back then there were several galleries in that space and I was making the rounds for some art magazine long since gone, and literally walked into the show without knowing anything about Manon Cleary.

I was hypnotized by what I saw. It was clear to the most casual observer that here was an artist who not only had the most enviable set of technical skills that I had ever seen, but also an equally enviable ability to grab a slice of energy out of her subject matter and deposit it into the artwork itself.

I was so envious of this belligerent dual skill, so powerfully individual in a DC art scene back them that eschewed any sort of confrontational realism and loved acre after acre of abstraction of all hues and shapes.

Some time after that I met her for the first time, and soon after I co-opened the first Fraser Gallery in Georgetown in 1996, and then I became good friends with her and spent many a good time in her splendid apartment in Adams Morgan, including a quite memorable New Year's in either 1996 or 1997.

My next memory comes when she had an exhibition of her ex-boyfriend's penis. Multiple paintings of that particular gent's penis were the talk of Washington in those days, and for quite a long time, there always seemed to be a Manon Cleary penis in every MOCA group show.

Then I recall the disturbing scenes in her rape paintings, which I think were first exhibited at MAP's old space in Baltimore. Here was the artist at her most powerful: taking the ultimate assault on a person and disseminating it to a powerful and beautifully painted series of images on canvas. Here was Cleary exerting the power of realism over all the other "isms" in a manner and form which only years of concentrated and meticulous work can deliver - the same span of years which eventually delivered the death prescription to this master.

Over the years that followed, we saw the quality of her spirit, as she continued to be a key part of the DC art scene, even as her health deteriorated.

I last saw her at the book release party for 100 Artists of Washington, DC, in which she is - of course - included. She thanked me for including her in the book and I told her how honored I was that she was part of it.

I used to call her "Manoncita" or Little Manon, and it is a bit unsettling, as I spent some time last night looking at the digital footprint of old emails between Manon and I, to see that term of endearment applied to such a giant of an artist.

I will miss you Manoncita.

Capps on Cleary

Kriston Capps has a good piece in the CP on Manon Cleary - read it here.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Bad boy, bad boy...

Anderson Campello in Hollywood, Florida

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Manon Cleary (1942-2011)

Just heard a few hours ago that my good friend Manon Cleary, by far one of the DMV's top artists, passed away today. More on this amazing artist later; meanwhile that's her last August, in a great photo by Rebecca D'Angelo.


Manon Cleary

The Nude in DC Book

The Nude in DC: The Figurative Art Scene in the Greater Washington Metropolitan Area is a new book and it features:

Over 50 institutions that deal with the nude in art - not just names and address, but descriptions, including history of some, website, logo - a full 28 pages on this feature alone.

Full text of The Art of Modeling, used for Model Training Program for Figure Models Guild.

A narrative on the nude in art, as well as society in general. Insightful information presented as an argument to counter conservative bias against nudity in general.

Includes a DVD with photos covering the Figure Models Guild since its inception in 2002 as well as many art exhibits and special events.

Also includes over 20 articles in Washington Post, Washington City Paper, Montgomery Advocate and other print media. Also video by Reuters News Service and numerous online publications including The, New York Arts Magazine, Artists-Perspectives, and too many to name. Includes several video clips, including Richard Takeuchi painting nude model in July 2004 exhibit - well over 2,000 images - worth the price alone.
The package is $20, including book and disc; or $15 individually. Payment may be by check made out to David R. Quammen, or PayPal - account Free Delivery - or pick up at gallery with prior notification. Proceeds will go to help fund MOCA DC.

Allow 10 days for delivery

David R. Quammen
1054 31st St NW
Washington, DC 20007

In Eff-el-Lay

In Miami, getting ready to do some family-visiting before heading out to Miami Beach to check out the Aqua Hotel and tomorrow begin the unloading and set up for the fair.

Artnet has a good preview of the fairs here.

Friday, November 25, 2011


Heading to Miami in the evening to participate in a couple of art fairs, but the one where I will be is the Aqua Art Fair in Miami Beach - almost right across the street from ABMB.

Anybody who will be in Miami for the art fairs and wants a free pass to Aqua, please drop me an email.

Xenophilia: Biomorphic Sculpture by Liz Lescault

Liz Lescault is an accomplished ceramic artist. Her sculptures reflect her mastery and exploration of organic forms daring the viewer to recognize where their inspiration originated.

The sculptures in her upcoming show Xenophilia at the Arts/Harmony Hall Regional Center (through Saturday, Dec. 24), according to her, 'is purposefully not identifiable as either animal, vegetable or mineral but encompasses many possibilities." Lescault’s work can be both beautiful and repelling in the same moment. Her sculpture is visually inviting, the surface may be velvety and smooth, the color deep and rich, often contradicting the viewer’s response to the form itself.

There's a sonic adjunct to the exhibition: "Recently I started playing with the idea of creating complimentary environments for my works to exist in, environments integral to the object that engage but never distract the viewer," she says. "My sculptures conjure objects of nature and natural objects exist in nature in an environment, a biosphere, as part of their surroundings. I decided to make sound my first venture into creating surroundings to envelope my work. The concept of the 'sound environment' is to bring a richer focus to the sculptural objects and a new dimension to the viewer’s experience where the environment is subtly and elegantly responsive to the viewer."

Arts/Harmony Hall Regional Center
10701 Livingston Rd.
Fort Washington, Maryland 30744

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

I hope that you all have the luck to spend today with your families and that we all think a thought for all those who can't, especially our men and women in uniform stationed all over the world and our sailors at sea.

Below is how pumpkin pies are made, source unknown, but clever!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Silverpoint at McLean

For a look at how a contemporary artist handles the difficult Renaissance technique of drawing with sterling silver, check out a show titled "Imaginary Botanicals" at the McLean Project for the Arts.

Elizabeth Whiteley's solo exhibition of silverpoints runs from December 1 to January 7.  The reception is on Thursday, December 1 from 7:00 to 9:00 in the Atrium Gallery.  She will also be at the Gallery from 2:00 to 4:00 on Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4.  Whiteley's website is here

New DC Gallery to open

CHARLES KRAUSE/REPORTING FINE ART is located in the heart of downtown Washington at 1300 13th Street NW, Suite 105, Washington, DC. 20005. Ph: 202-638-3612. To find out when each show is open to the public or to make an appointment, go to:

The gallery’s mission reflects the background and professional experiences of its founding director, Charles Krause, whose career as a foreign correspondent afforded him the opportunity to witness many of the wars, revolutions and social and political upheavals of the last two decades of the 20th Century. On assignment for The Washington Post, CBS News and The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, he saw the profound influence that art and visual images often have on the dynamics of change, and discovered the extraordinary work that has emerged---and continues to emerge---from the great social and political conflicts of our time.

“By showing the work of artists who have sought to influence, or who have been influenced by, the great social and political upheavals of the 20th and 21stcenturies, I hope to influence the way their art is viewed, understood and valued by museum curators, art historians, art critics and collectors throughout the world.

“I will exhibit and sell fine art I admire for its quality and originality as well as its social and political significance. I will also show work by artists I admire for the risks they have taken to defend their artistic freedom and/or the political and human rights of others. The work shown in my gallery will be selected on the basis of its artistic merit and its impact, both visual and political, irrespective of the artists’ political views --- or my own.

---Charles Krause

Campello for Christmas

This past week, for those of you who don't already know, my daughter Elise has been busy recording a Christmas Album by Sony Masterworks and Steinway Artist Andrew T. Miller.

Elise, along with a few other very talented artists, are featured on this album and you should pre-order yours today since it will be out this coming weekend!

Go to for more info!

Major Talent, Part II

Lida Moser, Chawky Frenn, Tim Tate, Lenny Campello, Pat Goslee
In the foreground that's the legendary Lida Moser with GMU Art School Top Gun, Prof. Chawky Frenn. In the background that's Tim Tate talking to the multi-talented Andrew Wodzianski, Pat Goslee, The Lenster and Victor Ekpuk's arm.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Opportunities for Artists

Deadline: December 2, 2011

Call for Submissions: Capitol Hill Arts Workshop's 6th Annual Contemporary Photography Exhibition

Exhibition dates: January 6th - February 2nd 2012. Looking for any and all types of contemporary photography: traditional, alternative, black and white, color, photojournalism, fine art, time based, performance, installation... if you think it involves photography, please submit! Over $2000.00 in purchase awards, and the selected photographers will become part of a permanent public installation in Washington, DC. One of the participating artists will be invited for a solo exhibition in 2012, including a press release, opening reception, printed invitation, and an artist honorarium. All submissions online, deadline for entries: December 2nd 2011. For details and submission guidelines, please visit

Fun art

Lucy, Desi and Fidel Castro
This is an early view on a potential masterpiece... art can be fun sometimes, right?

In the developing drawing, Ricky has just returned home a little early and finds Lucy in a compromising situation with fellow Oriente Cuban Fidel Castro.

Lucy... you got some 'splaining to do!

And now...

Possibly Al Gore's Internets world's coolest art website? Check it out here after you get a sample below.

Girl with Ice Cream Cone remake by Stephanie Gonot

“Girl with Ice Cream Cone” remake by Stephanie Gonot

Girl with Ice Cream Cone by Wayne Thiebaud

“Girl with Ice Cream Cone” by Wayne Thiebaud

Monday, November 21, 2011

Job in the Arts

UrbanArt Commission is currently accepting applications for the position of Executive Director for the organization. Interested individuals should view the job description and responsibilities outlined in their website below.

For more information please visit their website at or contact them at

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Free passes to the Miami art fairs?

Anybody need some free passes to some of the art fairs in Miami during ABMB week? Drop me an email if you'd like some.

I've noted with some sadness that the DMV is barely represented this year in Miami - as far as I can tell, only three DMV area galleries (one just an online gallery) and one non profit, are heading to Miami this year plus one Baltimore gallery, one Richmond gallery and one Norfolk gallery.

It's pretty tough being an artist in 2011 and not having a footprint in Miami during ABMB week.

What I don't get - having lived there recently - is how come there are over half a dozen Philadelphia galleries in various art fairs in Miami - twice the number over DMV.

A load of talent

Some of the great talent in my 100 Artists of Washington, DC book - photo taken at a recent book signing event at the home of a a major DMV art collector.

Lenny Campello and Lida Moser
That's me with the legendary Lida Moser.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

At Strathmore

Simultaneous exhibitions in the Mansion at Strathmore represent the largest three dimensional installation pieces ever shown at the arts center in From Forge to Form: Modern Ironwork, alongside some of the smallest, in the legacy exhibition, The 78th Annual International Exhibition of Fine Art in Miniature.

Both exhibitions are on view through December 30, 2011. From Forge to Form will illustrate the evolution of blacksmithing from a utilitarian trade to a growing artistic medium, featuring 32 pieces of ironwork, totaling 3,500 pounds, by Virginia-based artists Frederic Crist and Nol Putnam.

The juried Fine Art in Miniature exhibition features 667 meticulously painted, sculpted, carved and crafted micro-works from 252 artists. Works in the exhibitions are available for purchase. For more information, call (301) 581-5100 or visit

An opportunity to help

In today's economy, the term "starving artist" has taken on a much more prevalent and literal definition. But if our professional artists are starving, what does that mean for a children's nonprofit trying to improve lives using art?

It is harder than ever to raise money in the nonprofit sector, but that is exactly what M.O.M.I.E's TLC is still fighting to do. Mentors of Minorities in Education's Total Learning Cis-tem is a nonprofit organization focused on giving at-risk children of color the nurturing environment and leadership skills that they need to succeed. One of their most basic tactics is to use art to help children see the world from perspectives other than their own.

On December 17th, M.O.M.I.E's TLC is hosting a charity art auction supporting its Eco-Green Children's Facility building plan. The auction will take place from 6pm to 8pm at Sankofa Video and Books and will feature gallery owners, community leaders, notable DC figures and many more. The initiative is based on the premise that they can auction art to create more opportunities for art. They are seeking art donations to sell at auction from local high school and college students, as well as professional artists from around the country. The money raised will create a new space to expand and continue their mission of using art to teach life lessons.

The economy may be tough, but every artist or art enthusiast can play a part in easing the burden for someone else. Donate a piece for the auction. Donate time to attend and learn. If you're a local business or gallery, take out an ad in their event program. And if you're able, donate a few dollars for this fantastic cause.

To donate or for more information, visit or email

Friday, November 18, 2011


I just accidentally nuked about 50 unread emails thanks to the "Delete From Imbox" option in the B'berry.

My apologies in advance.

The Lilith Plotting The Sin

Just worked out another drawing with embedded digital component. This time, instead of a video, I embedded a tiny motherboard driving a very small LCD screen. Below is a series of images showing how the piece progressed from conception to changes and final piece.

The work started as "Eve Contemplating The Sin" and this was Eve - note the tiny screen to the right - within the screen, a series of red apples rotate through:

The Lilith Plotting The Sin, Charcoal with Embedded Digital Screen, by F. Lennox Campello

Here's the computer chip on the verso which drives the LCD screen - it has a rechargeable Lithium battery.

The Lilith Plotting The Sin, Charcoal with Embedded Digital Screen, by F. Lennox Campello

Then I framed it all up, and was getting ready to pack it for Aqua Art Fair, when it somehow spoke to me; this wasn't Eve, this was her predecessor - this was The Lilith. And so, I unframed it, and changed the drawing...

The Lilith Plotting The Sin, Charcoal with Embedded Digital Screen, by F. Lennox Campello

And now she's The Lilith... covered in Pictish tattoos! And below is the final piece: The Lilith Plotting The Sin.

The Lilith Plotting The Sin, Charcoal with Embedded Digital Screen, by F. Lennox Campello

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Composer

MPA/Corcoran longtime art teacher Barbara Januskiewicz, together with NY jazz pianist Matthew Shipp, is part of a collaborative art project called The Composer. This is more than an independent film, as it can be developed into outreach programs, art installations, and multimedia exhibits.

Her work this year has been to fuse music, art and the idea of creative critical thinking together. Here with The Composer project, she can reach into cultural art centers, museums and alternative art venues around the world. We know Barbara as a multimedia artist/filmmaker who sees herself and art as a way to celebrate creativity. Her actions have advocated taking art outside of the boundaries of the (art) system and to open it up to multiple possibilities thus bringing creativity into all areas of life. She now needs our support in reaching her goals with this project.

Matthhew Shipp, Barbara's partner:

is a perfect match for her. His talent persists as a resilient outsider, maintaining strong ties to NYC's free-jazz community even as he assails its orthodoxies. His strengths draw from listening to his own voice and taking risk in both composing and performing. He has performed around the world and has over 20 CDs, both solo and in groups. He is also the leader of the Matthew Shipp Trio.
You can support this project on their Kickstarter page at your preferred level. This is a charitable tax deduction courtesy of the American Jazz Museum.

100 Artists of Washington, DC book
This was taken at a book-signing party for the artists in the "100 Artists of Washington, DC" book at the home of one of the top DMV area art collectors.

That's me signing a book in the rear. In the foreground there's some major talent... that's Prof. Chawky Frenn, the top gun at GMU's Art School taking a pic of the legendary Lida Moser - yep... she whose's work is in every major museum in the world (including all DMV museums except the Hirshhorn... hello H?), and whose life has been documented in not one but two documentaries, and whose image (painted by Alice Neel not once but four times) hangs in a few major museums of their own around the planet...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Good Cuban Food = Cuban Hall of Fame

In Rockville, Maryland there's an excellent Cuban restaurant called "Cuban Corner." As far as my palate is concerned, and as I've stated before, this is the best and most authentic Cuban restaurant in the Greater Washington, DC area. They are at 825 Hungerford Drive, near Ivy League Lane, Rockville, MD, 301-279-0310. Essentially on a strip mall right on Rockville Pike.

The food is authentic, affordable and plentiful (see the menu here). My favorite dish there is "Ropa Vieja," although the "Vaca Frita" is also superb. Either of those dishes, with a side of yuca con mojo or tostones, will delight your mouth and belly. There's something special that happens when yucca and lime and garlic marry. "Ropa Vieja", as Cuban Jews will often tell you, has an interesting tie to Cuba's considerable (and often ignored) Jewish history.

A visit to Cuban corner also delivers the interesting spectacle of the restaurant's Cuban Hall of Fame... or as they call it: The Wall.

The Cuban Hall of Fame, as determined by Joaquin Cabrejas, the restaurant's feisty owner, is composed of Cubans, Cuban-Americans, and people of traceable Cuban ancestry, and is made up of hundreds of name plaques glued to the restaurant's walls.

Some potential surprises to non Cubans (and even to some Cubans):

- Angela Anais Juana Antolina Rosa Edelmira Nin y Culmell - otherwise known as Anais Nin, one of the 20th century's sexual goddesses nymphomaniacs (and a damned good writer as well!).

- Amazon's creator Jeff Bezos.

- Benjamin Huberman, Science Adviser to several American presidents.

- Truman Capote (by adoption)... took the last name of his adopted dad. Capote in Spanish is a large cape or the hood of a car.

- Ysrael A. Seinuk, the "father of the modern New York skyline."

- Eamon de Valera: The father of the modern Irish republic was Eamon de Valera, who was born in New York in 1882. His father, Juan de Valera, although technically on paper always reported as a Spaniard, was really a Cuban, born in Cuba (which was part of Spain back then), the son of a Cuban sugar planter and escaped to New York during the Independence Wars with Spain. There he earned his living as a piano teacher. He met and married Irish immigrant Catherine Coll. Juan died shortly after the birth of their son Eduardo. After Juan's death, his wife sent Eduardo to Ireland, where her family changed his name to the Gaelic version of Eduardo: Eamon.

- Cameron Diaz... we all know who she is.

- Dr. Steve Pieczenik, author of 39 books, including 16 bestsellers. He is critically acclaimed author of psycho-political thrillers and the co-creator of the New York Times best-selling "Tom Clancy's Op-Center" and "Tom Clancy's Net Force" book series. He is also one of the world's most experienced international crisis managers and hostage negotiators.

- Olga Viso, the Hirshhorn Museum's former director and now director of the Walker Art Center.

- The Joker... I mean Cesar Romero.

Ambrosio José Gonzales, this Cuban Confederate Colonel played a significant role in the Civil War and was essentially responsible for building Confederate coastal defenses. He had his finest hour during the Civil War as the artillery commander at the Battle of Honey Hill.

Cubanos todos de alguna manera!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Loads of talent in one pic

At a recent booksigning at the home of a major DMV art collector...

That's me in the background signing a copy of 100 Washington, DC Artists... which continues to sell surprisingly well as more and more DMV area shops and book stores order copies...

And in the foreground there's some major talent... that's Prof. Chawky Frenn, the top gun at GMU's Art School taking a pic of the legendary Lida Moser - yep... she whose's work is in every major museum in the world (including all DMV museums except the Hirshhorn... hello H?), and whose life has been documented in not one but two documentaries, and whose image (painted by Alice Neel not once but four times) hangs in a few major museums of their own around the planet...

Just bragging...

New Video Drawing: Ave Frida

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

Here's the first stage of the drawing

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

Here's a better view of the drawing's first stage

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

The drawing itself is now pretty much finished and it's ready for the narrative video to be embedded

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

The pattern of the window to be cut in the drawing has been measured and now the drawing is ready to be cut

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

The window has been cut in the shape of a heart with fangs. A short loop of Kahlo and a young, frightened girl plays in the video player embedded within the drawing

Ave Frida by F. Lennox Campello

Ave Frida, Mater Omnium Artificum. 22 x 18. Charcoal and conte on paper with embedded video player and historical video in loop. 2011 by F. Lennox Campello.

Monday, November 14, 2011


A wave of repression is currently taking place in Cuba – but you wouldn’t know about it from the lack of media coverage.

Why is the press at home and abroad ignoring blatant human rights violations?

Why has the current administration consistently coddled this neighboring and brutal dictatorship?

And, what should our elected leaders be saying about Cuba and these human rights abuses?

This will all be discussed tomorrow here.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

You can't make this stuff up

From the current issue of The Gazette:

Brindie Lynn Fish and Nicholas Drew Frye were married June 24 at The First and Franklin Presbyterian Church, followed by a reception at The Belvedere in Baltimore.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Tomorrow: Red Dirt Open Studio

Serving warm drinks for your November art-browsing experience
Free parking
Lots of other art studios open nearby, within walking distance...

Nearest metro: Red line to Rhode Island Ave (+ bus to Mt. Rainier) or green line to West Hyattsville and easy 1 mile bike ride from W. Hyattsville

Sunday, Nov. 13 from 1-5 pm for Red Dirt's Fall Open Studio
3706-08 Otis Street
Mt. Rainier, MD 20712

The Miraculous Mass

From Carolina Mayorga:

Hello Sons and Daughters, join me this November 17 at Hillyer Art Space for my next performance art piece The Miraculous Mass. Don't miss the 3rd apparition of the Miraculous Artist in the Nation's Capital, this time performing a ceremony that will turn your life around forever! You might've got the invite via Facebook too, I just can't wait to bless you all, hope to see you there,

Hillyer Art Space
9 Hillyer Court, NW (Behind the Philips Collection)
Washington, DC 20008
Service begins at 7pm sharp.
More info at:

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

LCDR Lenny CampelloThat's me in 1992 in Skaggs Island, California, and below us my favorite poem about veterans.

In the poem Rudyard Kipling captures what so often in history men and women in uniform have felt and experienced... my favorite lines are at the bottom, when Kipling writes:

For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot

Enjoy the poem and a well deserved "thank you!" to all the men and women in uniform around the world and their families, and to all who have had the honor and privilege to wear the uniform of the armed forces of the United States.

I went into a public-'ouse to get a pint o' beer,
The publican 'e up an' sez, "We serve no red-coats here."
The girls be'ind the bar they laughed an' giggled fit to die,
I outs into the street again an' to myself sez I:

O it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, go away";
But it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play,
The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
O it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play.

I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
They gave a drunk civilian room, but 'adn't none for me;
They sent me to the gallery or round the music-'alls,
But when it comes to fightin', Lord! they'll shove me in the stalls!

For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, wait outside";
But it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide,
The troopship's on the tide, my boys, the troopship's on the tide,
O it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide.

Yes, makin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;
An' hustlin' drunken soldiers when they're goin' large a bit
Is five times better business than paradin' in full kit.

Then it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, 'ow's yer soul?"
But it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll,
The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
O it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll.

We aren't no thin red 'eroes, nor we aren't no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An' if sometimes our conduck isn't all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don't grow into plaster saints;

While it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, fall be'ind",
But it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind,
There's trouble in the wind, my boys, there's trouble in the wind,
O it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind.

You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace.

For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!

-- Rudyard Kipling

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Bragging here now...

So all I did was to provide the watercolor for the book cover, and yes the amazing photography inside this book and the harsh historical facts coupled with the vintage photography does make Ada Bezos Castilla's book "Cuba en Verso: La Isla Entre Rejas" a gorgeous poetry book... and yes, we all know that Amazon founder-geek Jeff Bezos is Cuban-American, and yes Ada is his aunt...

But amigos, this book was just published and tonight it went number one on this Amazon's Best Seller List!

Tomorrow: NYC NOW in Bethesda

Margaret Bowland, Flower Girl, Krylon and Tar on Linen, 28NYC NOW is an exhibition of new work by 5 contemporary artists living in New York City and it is Morton Fine Art's (MFA) fourth *a pop-up project.

The exhibition features new artworks by nationally renowned, New York based, contemporary artists Margaret Bowland, Kenichi Hoshine, Choichun Leung, Jules Arthur and Jason Sho Green. *a pop-up project will be on display from November 11th through December 6th 2011 at Gallery B located at 7700 Wisconsin Ave # E, Bethesda, MD 20814-6530. The opening reception will be held on Friday, November 11th from 6 - 9 pm. Images can be previewed online at and

Do this tomorrow

See this on PinkLine Project. If you've had the honor and privilege of serving in the US Armed Forces, then this art project is seeking Veterans & Civilians for historic photo by the Metabolic Studio’s Optics Team and their Liminal Camera.

Please arrive by 10am on the Mall on 3rd street between Jefferson and Madison Avenues, across from the Capitol building. Giant flag raising and photograph to take place at 11am sharp. Bring a picnic.

The photograph will be on view at the Hirshhorn Museum on 11/12/11 and 11/13/11.

All the details here.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Are We Too Prudish For Our Own Good?

Herewith a guest post by Tiberio Simone:

The Difference Between Sensuality and Sexuality
By: Tiberio Simone

Being an American citizen, I enjoy the freedom of expression enjoyed by artists in this country. However, I wonder sometimes if we grasp some of the ironies of how we express that freedom.

I am from Italy, which is known as one of the most romantic countries in Europe, a destination for lovers who come to visit from all over the world. So, perhaps I have a slightly different perspective on how Americans express themselves, particularly with regard to romance and sensuality. In Italy, we embrace these concepts in everything we do – the way we dress, the way we cook, the way we dine, and the way we live.

In America however, I sometimes sense a split personality with regard to these concepts. More specifically, I think we sometimes confuse our sensuality with sexuality, and as a result, try to keep both of them hidden for fear of corrupting our children. My point is, there is a difference.

For instance, if any part of the human body that would traditionally be covered by a bathing suit on a typical American beach is shown in a film, that film is rated for adult content, usually getting an “R.” If it is shown in a TV show, the scene is either deleted, or the “naughty bits,” as the British call them, are digitally pixilated out. And of course those areas are not necessarily even covered by bathing suits in Europe, as many of the beaches there are clothing optional.

In this type of censorship, there is no accounting for context. It’s not about the type of scene, but rather the anatomy. If it is a romantic scene, with a context of love and respect, soft lighting, and appropriate mood, it is considered just as “dirty” as a scene in which naked women are running around and shown as sexual objects and nothing more.

The same goes for modern art. Gallery shows in which the human form is depicted tastefully and sensually are regarded as pornography by many “morals” groups, leading some Congressmen to suggest that public funding from the National Endowment for the Arts should not be awarded to any artist who deals with the nude form. The chilling effect, when we approach the sensual and the sexual in the same way, is that we teach our children that nudity itself is a dirty thing, and that they should all be ashamed of their bodies.

That is why young adults in America go directly from puberty straight to pornography – because they do not have anything in between, such as public art or other forms of healthy nudity – things that would help them develop an understanding of sensuality.

Here is the ultimate irony. While we demonize certain parts of the human form, we don’t demonize treating women as sex objects at all, because we use sex to sell just about everything in the consumer marketplace. In TV commercials, young, attractive, and barely dressed women sell everything from cars to beer, weight loss plans to gym gear, breakfast cereals to vacation destinations – even snack foods practically guaranteed to make the men who eat them incredibly unattractive to the women used to sell them.

The difference here is context. We enter the world naked. It is our most natural state as humans, yet the naked body is considered dirty and inappropriate for all time zones. Meanwhile, treating women not as people, but simply as objects of sexual desire, which demeans all women in the process, is perfectly acceptable.

We need to create an environment in America in which sensuality is not confused with sexuality, so that we can all enjoy a freedom of expression that is based in context and meaning instead of an unhealthy and negative obsession with sex.
(Born in southern Italy, Tiberio Simone is a James Beard Award-winning chef and co-author of La Figa: Visions of Food and Form, a coffee table book that features a spectacular collection of sensual photography – models wearing nothing but Simone’s edible creations.)

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Call for Artists

The Howard County Arts Council is seeking artists to participate in the annual Silent Auction Art Exhibit as part of the Arts Council’s annual fundraising gala, Celebration of the Arts in Howard County. The Silent Auction seeks to highlight the talented artists of Howard County at this important event.

All 2-D, 3-D, and fine craft artists, 18 years or older, residing, working, or studying in Howard County, HCAC members, and artists who have exhibited in Howard County in the last year are invited to submit. Deadline for submissions is December 3, 2011.

Visual artists working in all styles and media are invited to apply, including painters, sculptors, ceramicists, fiber artists, jewelers, and photographers. Artists will be selected by a jury panel who may also invite artists who are eligible to participate. This showcase of artists in Howard County has proven to be a great benefit to both established and emerging talent in the community and is also a successful fundraiser to support art programs, exhibitions, and organizations in the county.

This year’s event will be held at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College on March 24, 2012 from 6-10pm. The Silent Auction exhibition will be presented in the Rouse Company Foundation Gallery. The final bid for each artwork sold will be divided equally between the artist and the Arts Council. Last year’s Silent Auction sales exceeded $10,000 and 75 pieces sold.

A prospectus with additional information is available on the Celebration page of the Arts Council’s website or can be mailed or emailed by calling 410-313-ARTS (2787).

Monday, November 07, 2011


InstantDC is a new organization devoted to showcasing emerging artists in the DMV area.

Check them out here.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Angel update

The two angel sculptures which needed to find a home have been adopted by two local art collectors and are now in homes in Potomac, MD!

Saturday, November 05, 2011


Emergence by Stephen CarrollPhotoworks, that terrific photography school and gallery in Glen Echo Park, will hold Photo Slam 2011 from 8 to 10 p.m. Sunday at the District’s Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St. N.W.

A $10 donation is suggested to witness various photographers projecting their portfolios in front of a panel of celebrity judges.

The event is part of FotoWeek DC, the DMV's spectacular annual celebration of photography.

Annual Transformer Silent Auction & Benefit Party

Individual tickets for the8 th Annual Transformer Silent Auction & Benefit Party are now on sale at our new website, $150 per ticket; $175 after November 8. Advanced purchase is required.

The 8th Annual Transformer Silent Auction & Benefit Party – a one-night-only event designed to celebrate and support Transformer and the artists they serve, while raising the visibility of DC’s contemporary arts community—will take place November 18, 2011 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art.

Highlighting Transformer’s mission to connect and promote DC based emerging artists with their nationally and internationally based peers, this year’s Auction will feature over 100 artworks by artists across the globe, including artists from Mexico, Japan, Australia and points in between, along with one of the best selections of artworks by DC based emerging & more established artists, including: Billy Colbert, Cynthia Connolly, Natalie Cheung, Frank Day, Mia Feuer, Pepa Leon, Maggie Michael, Robin Rose, Molly Springfield, and Trevor Young, among many others.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Your art fix for Vets Day

See this on PinkLine Project. If you've had the honor and privilege of serving in the US Armed Forces, then this art project is seeking Veterans & Civilians for historic photo by the Metabolic Studio’s Optics Team and their Liminal Camera.

Please arrive by 10am on the Mall on 3rd street between Jefferson and Madison Avenues, across from the Capitol building. Giant flag raising and photograph to take place at 11am sharp. Bring a picnic.

The photograph will be on view at the Hirshhorn Museum on 11/12/11 and 11/13/11.

All the details here.

Tomorrow: Victoria F. Gaitán opens at Conner

Copyright © 2011 Victoria F. Gaitán Studio, All rights reserved.With 35 new images from one of the most talented new artists around, this is sure to be a mind-popping exhibition - plan to be there!

Exhibition Dates: November 5 - December 17, 2011
Opening Reception: November 5th @ 6 - 8pm

Exhibition / Opening Location:
Conner Contemporary Art
1358 Florida Ave, NE
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: 202/588 - 8750

New Gallery

ArtSpace 109 is a new gallery venue in the DMV.

The gallery is located at 109 N. Fairfax Street, 3rd level, Alexandria, VA 22314, Tel: 703.548.7729.

Their first show, titled “About a Dog” showcases the painting and drawings by the super-talented Ben Ferry. The opening reception and meet the artist is Friday, November 11, from 7pm - 9pm and the show runs from November 1 thru November 30, 2011.

Back in the good ole days before Eugene Robinson began the destruction of the visual arts coverage in the Washington Post (while he was editor of the Style section), a new gallery opening in the DMV would merit a little ink in the WaPo.

We'll see.

Meanwhile: How about it WCP?

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Save these angels

The below two sculptures were part of the Community of Angels Charity in Los Angeles in 2001. The two angels are Angel Virtue by Phoebe Beasley and Angel Peace by Ali Golkar.

Because of some urgent issues, these two life sized sculptures are being offered by the owners to any one who wants them in an urgent plea to save them from being destroyed, as they need to be moved this weekend from their storage space... or destroyed.

The two angel sculptures would make a great art statement not only to an ex-Angeleno, but to any lover of art. Please, help me find a home for these angels in someone's home or backyard or public art space!

Whoever wants to acquire and save these two sculptures would have to pick them up this weekend.

Email me for details! lenny at lennycampello dot com!!

The Art Festival Directory

The most important business decision an artist makes is choosing the art festivals in which to participate. The process can be difficult, frustrating...and time consuming. And trying to compare many festivals can often be a confusing process, with subjective reviews and recommendations that may not relate to an artist's needs.

That's where The Art Festival Directory with Show-Rate comes in.

The Art Festival Directory includes detailed, complete information on more than 1,200 festivals nationwide--and growing daily. The information is provided by the festivals themselves--with up to 50 separate elements in each detailed listing. So local DMV area festival organizers should check this out and ensure their festival is listed.

The Directory's search capabilities are robust: artists can use one or more top-line search criteria, retrieve summaries, then look at each festival's details. Artists can view their search results in listing, calendar and map formats...or all three!

And, yes, it's all completely free!

Each festival that chooses to be included in our exclusive evaluation system also carries in its listing a SHOW-RATE score, from 0 to 100, that tells artists how the festival compares with other festivals in 27 separate categories.

A festival's SHOW-RATE score is calculated by comparing its characteristics with those voted by artists nationwide as their choices for what makes the perfect show. No individual show reviews are included, nor are sales for individual artists.

SHOW-RATE has a single goal: to give artists an authoritative, comprehensive and easily understood tool to use in evaluating festivals for themselves. SHOW-RATE is free, too.

Here's the link:

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Opportunity for Performance Artists

Soapbox is a new performance art series at Hillyer Art Space. They host a monthly event, showing 2-3 performances in an evening, with opportunity for additional performances. Their open call is not limited to work that fits in an evening performance dynamic, they encourage all types of performance to submit proposals.

The series seeks to bolster and expand the performance art community in and around the DC area and beyond, based on the idea that if a platform is presented, new performance will be created.

They are currently accepting submissions on a rolling basis, open to all kinds of performance, from individuals and collaborations. There are no prerequisites for submitting work, and they encourage artists of all media to consider their work in terms of performance.

Students are more than welcome to send proposals to our general open call, and they will also host a student performance event in the Spring.

The next Soapbox is on November 17, 6-9pm featuring the artists Carolina Mayorga and a collaboration between Michelle Gomez and Jonathan Wille. Michelle and Jonathan's performance will take place in a set-installation they will construct in a smaller gallery at Hillyer, which will be up through the month of November. They will have additional performances during the First Friday opening on 11/4 and on 11/12, both 6-9pm.

Submissions can be sent to and any questions about submitting work or the series can be directed to

For more information visit this website.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Some things never change... but they will!


Over 15 Cuban pro-democracy activists have been brutally beaten and arrested outside of a Santa Clara hospital, where the lives of two hunger strikers hang in the balance.

Last week, Rolando Ferrer Espinosa and Alcides Rivera Rodríguez were taken to a hospital in the central city of Santa Clara, pursuant to more than 30 days on a hunger strike demanding an end to the Castro regime's violence against peaceful protesters.

Pro-democracy activists have been camped out in front of the hospital, day and night, concerned for the well-being of the hunger strikers.

Amongst those arrested were Rivera Rodriguez's own wife, Idania Yánez Contreras, as well as Jorge Luis García Pérez (Antúnez), Yris Pérez Aguilera, Damaris Moya Portieles, Julio Columbié Batista and Yanisbel Valido.
The end of the brutal Castro dictatorship is near... they know it too, and it won't be pretty.

Reagan statue will be unveiled today

The 9 foot tall statue of Ronaldus Magnus at DCA was designed by Chas Fagan, who also has created statues of Reagan that stand in the U.S. Capitol, at Grosvenor Square in London and at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, Calif.

Five gets you ten that art critics will hate it (the statue that is...).