Monday, April 30, 2012

Scrapping the artists

Here's the story: There's a 1.6-acre property adjacent to the National Institutes of Health Open Space in Bethesda. The initial proposal by developer Patrinely Group of Houston, Texas included 25 percent "moderately priced dwelling units and about 2,000 square feet within the main building for an arts incubator, which would have offered studio and exhibit space for emerging artists." That all went away when the condo market collapsed in Bethesda and now StonebridgeCarras, which purchased the site about a year ago, has a new proposal:
The vacant Trillium lot could be home to 360 luxury appartments and a grocery, if plans are approved by the Montgomery County Planning Board on Thursday.
And first thing to go in the StonebridgeCarras proposal: The arts incubator.

How does the Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce feel about that?
 “We really support that,” said Ginanne Italiano, executive director of the Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce. “It’s not the whole concept that the other organization had, but I think this is going to be an even better concept.”
Yeah Ginanne, another grocery store is an even better concept than an arts incubator. After all, there are only about a dozen or more grocery stores in Bethesda and ahhh... zero affordable space for artists and nothing even remotely close to an arts incubator, and most Bethesda area art galleries have closed in the last couple of years; thank you for your moral support.

Good move StonebridgeCarras (nice artsy name!) and let DC Art News be the first to welcome to Bethesda, yet another Safeway, or yet another Giant, or considering the artsy name of the developer, perhaps another Whole Foods.

Makes my head hurt.

Read the Gazette story by Jessica Ablamsky here and read the developer's news release here.

Around Town

That busload of San Francisco art collectors visiting the DMV is out and about town today. They started with a pep talk this morning (at the home of a most gracious Chevy Chase art collector) and then headed out to the District to visit art studios, artists' homes and galleries.

They were last seen visiting Flux, Red Dirt and the WGS and all of those artists' studios in that area.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Collatz Conjecture and Art

I'm probably only one of a handful of people on the planet who has an Undergraduate degree in Art as well as a degree in Mathematics and a Master's in Artificial Intelligence.

As such, I'm always thinking about ways to explore Math in Art... Hidden in the shadows of most of my drawings (shadows cast by bodies as well as shadows in the bodies themselves) are often to be found other figures and clues, and just as often mathematical equations, progressions, theorems, conjectures, etc.

One recurring and fascinating issue to me, buried in the shadows of a drawing that I sold last week in New York is the Collatz Conjecture:

Take any natural number and let's call it n.

If n is even, then we divide it by 2 to get n / 2.

If n is odd, then we multiply it by 3 and add 1 to obtain 3n + 1.

Repeat this division/multiplication indefinitely (and this is where "indefinitely" becomes an issue, as the British say).

The Collatz Conjecture is that no matter what number you start with, you will always and no matter what the starting number is, eventually reach 1.

This conjecture property has also been called "oneness."

Can art help represent this? I don't know - that's why I bury them in the shadows of the drawings and not try to solve them per say; but often it is the drawings themselves that trigger the specific mathematical clue/issue being associated with the piece.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

At Morrison House on Tuesday

WHAT:  “The story behind the 100 Artists of Washington, DC book” - Morrison House Presents: F. Lennox Campello, Author

DESCRIPTION:  Author F. Lennox Campello discusses his controversial book, 100 Artists of Washington, DC, and provides insights into the selection process, the publication of the book and the subsequent eruption of controversy in the Greater DC area art scene.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 1, 6 to 8pm

WHERE: Morrison House, 116 South Alfred Street, Alexandria, VA 22314

INFO: Morrison House: / Phone: 703-838-8000
ADMISSION: Free admission (Food and drink available for purchase)

Friday, April 27, 2012

Roberto Rodriguez and the Cuban Jewish All Stars

The Jewish Music Festival is featuring a very special act this year:  
Roberto Rodriguez is a true innovator whose artistic vision synthesizes Cuban and Jewish music into an entirely new creation that breathes joy and melancholy. Born in Havana and raised in Miami, the percussionist and composer’s groundbreaking music explores his cross-cultural roots and influences, melding his native Cuban music with contemporary genres of world, Sephardic, pop, jazz, electronic and classical music.
 Details here.

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: July 8, 2012

A national juried exhibition of emerging artists, ages 16-25, with disabilities. Sustaining / Creating asks emerging artists to showcase work that illuminates innovative viewpoints on sustainability and contemporary creativity. Beyond its scientific definition, sustainability references notions of responsibility and stewardship of our natural world in all facets of human interaction–from the environmental to the cultural. Sustainability indicates the capacity to endure.

Submitted artwork should illustrate these thematic ideas, which may be achieved through broad, abstracted references or detailed personal creations. Your submission might also reflect your experience of living with a disability and its role in shaping or transforming your art.

This exhibition is presented by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts’ VSA & Accessibility Office and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.

Details here

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Scream

The frenzy around the imminent auction on May 2 of Edvard Munch’s The Scream at Sotheby’s in New York is reaching a peak here in Europe, where predictions abound that it will break the record price paid for a work of art at auction: $106.5 millions two years ago for Pablo Picasso’s “Nude green leaves and bust.”
Read the story here.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

You knew this was coming...

 Minnesotan Dan Lacey is most famous for his paintings of celebrities and politicians with pancakes on their heads (or with pancake breasts, or pancake eyeglasses, or pancake anything else). But a wad of money, not a stack of pancakes, is the centerpiece of his latest work: A portrait of Mitt Romney, mostly naked and in the process of getting nakeder. The 8-by-10-inch acrylic painting, which Lacey recently completed over the course of four hours in the passenger seat of a PT Cruiser while he and his wife ran errands, is currently up for auction on eBay
Read the whole story here.

Not the first time that taking the clothes off a politician is a fun thing for an artist to do... eight years ago Kayti Didricksen's nude portrait of President Bush became the most downloaded image in the internets and my own Obama Agonistes now sits in a private collection in Miami Beach.

Monday, April 23, 2012

About to hit the DMV

A couple of busloads of art collectors from all over the US is about to fly to DC (next week) and do some guided (not by me) studio and gallery visits.

One thing in common? A copy of "100 Artists of Washington, DC."

More later...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Celebrity Sighting

Actress Lucy Liu came by my booth at the Affordable Art Fair earlier today. She was with an assistant and they asked for a card.

Later the assistant returned (a really nice lady) and bought one of my drawings.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Saturday at AAFNYC

The constant crowds continue as the good weather stays in NYC and based on what I saw today, it looked like many galleries were moving artwork.

Jeannette Herrera continues to have a brilliant NYC debut as today she sold another four paintings! Also closed the deal and sold Judith Peck's largest piece in the show... and also sold two of my pieces, including the very cool second version of "Eve Sees Her Face for the First Time" - a digital-embedded piece.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Report

Today the Affordable Art Fair was once again well-attended. I sold six of my drawings, including the first sale of the "new" series of digital-embedded components (I sold "A Woman Refusing to See Men").

After the show closed at 9PM, I walked to the parking garage on 32nd Street, drove back to 35th and started trolling for a parking spot near the loading dock. This is so that on Sunday I could have an easier time taking all the artwork down from the 11th floor to the street without having to compete for the two loading dock spots with a hundred vans and trucks. After a while I got a Doris Day parking spot right next to the dock and headed back to the hotel, exhausted but mission accomplished!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Thursday at the AAFNYC

Noon started with some sort of HGTV function, which was catered by Monterone and thus we all got to eat some pretty good food to start the day.

Excellent crowds again and by the end of the night we sold four more Jeannette Herrera's paintings and three more of my drawings.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

AAFNYC Preview Night

Let's just say that I thought all the bad juju had gone...

I finished hanging, labeling and prepping the booth today, then wandered around 7th Avenue until I ended up with a very cool Ermenegildo Zegna (cough, cough) blazer.

Back to the booth at 5PM and the fair opened at 6PM and was packed right away, and I was told there were huge lines for the free booze. Meanwhile back at the farm, a few seconds after the show opened I sold one of Jeannette L. Herrera's paintings (by the time the night was over the buyers had returned and bought a couple more paintings).

Then someone puts their glass of champagne on my desk... seconds later a person bumps it with their purse and sends bubbly flying all over my computer, paperwork and two copies of my 100 Artists of Washington, DC book.

Later on I got an offer on Judith Peck's largest piece in the show ("this offer is good until Friday," said gravely the gent making the offer) .... let's see.

Suddenly a feeding frenzy starts and six of my drawings sell within five minutes; that's what I'm talking about!

The show opens to the public tomorrow.

Ready for Stacy

As you know from yesterday's post, I left all my dress clothes back home, and thus today - after finishing setting up the booth - I walked down Seventh Ave and got a heck of a good deal on an Zegna summer blazer.

Let's see if Stacy London notices...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

This is how I roll

Heck of a day: Drove to NYC for the Affordable Art Fair, then I was issued my usual $115 ticket while unloading for the art fair; then realized that somehow I left three major new video drawing pieces back at home (more on that later); and then sliced my finger open while opening a box, dripping torrents of blood onto the artwork in the process (try cleaning that up while bleeding profusely at the same time).

Later on, when I got to the hotel, I also realized that I had left all my dress clothes in the living room back at home.

Did that I mention that at about the same time that I was realizing this, my wife called and my poor Alida had earlier tripped on a tree stump while running and fractured her knee cap.

Tonight I decided that I better stay all night in my hotel room, lest some poor New Yorker gets his ass kicked. It was while pondering this avoided trouble, that I discovered (well Russ McIntosh did) that two of the "missing pieces" are still hanging on the wall at Montgomery College.

Here's the odd part: in my brain, I can picture driving to MCC and picking up those pieces at the end of the show a few days ago; wrapping them up, and boxing them for the fair. Helluva brain fart, ain't it?

Is there anyone reading this blog who is driving or coming to NYC in the next day or two and can pick up those pieces and bring them over? There's a free Campello original in the deal for you.

The AAFNYC opens tomorrow night with a VIP and press preview; more later.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Kennicott nominated as a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in criticism

Internal WaPo email:

To the Staff:

Please join us in congratulating Philip Kennicott for being a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in criticism.

As our culture critic, Phil ranges widely in his subject matter but never strays from the lucid, cerebral approach he brings to every piece. Last year, he found ways to illuminate and explain nearly every major news event, from the revolutions on the Arab Street and in American city parks, to the nuclear disaster in Japan, and the death of Osama bin Laden. In a highly semiotic world, he described the meaning of those events, just as he did, week in and week out, in more traditional cultural realms. His ease in writing about architecture and arts is matched by a clarity of reasoning that makes his work compelling. Phil’s work is extraordinary, and we’re pleased the Pulitzer jury recognized it in making him a finalist.
Congrats to the Kennicottmeister...

E. Brady Robinson

Wanna see a really cool art project? Check it out here.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Campello original

Anderson Campello

Anderson Campello painting "Ship Wakes as Seen from Space", shaving cream on plastic tablecloth. 30 x 72 inches. Circa 2012.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bettie Page

C'mon... I know that all of youse knew that sooner or later someone like me, who addresses the theme of icons in his artwork, would get to the first true supermodel in planetary history. Below is a trial drawing for a much larger (eventually) video drawing of the breathtaking Bettie Page.

The Notorious Bettie Page by F. Lennox Campello

"Notorium Bettie Paginas Ex", charcoal and conte on paper, 6x5 inches, 2012.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: July 1, 2012

Canvas - The Artist Showcase states that

The essence behind CANVAS is to promote the work of rising artists, and have it seen by a large number of galleries, curators, publishers, ad agencies, art directors, and artist representatives.

CANVAS is conducted in a non-profit co-operative way. This showcase is designed to promote artist's, not make money off of them.

The book itself will be a large format perfect bound paperback in full color. The page count will be dependant on how many entries we recieve and how many are accepted for inclusion by our judges. The grand prize winner of the entries will be featured on the cover.

A Call for Entries is sent out quarterly to various art communities. We encourage everyone who wants to be seen, and have their work noticed, to submit.
Details here.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Opportunity for DC area artists

Deadline: April 19, 2012

The Capitol Hill ART League presents its Third Annual Metro DC open juried exhibition: It’s a Wonderful World?

All artists, 18 years of age or older residing in the Washington, DC metropolitan area are eligible to enter.

Deadline for submissions is Thursday April 19, 2012.

The Capitol Hill ART League (CHAL) is a program of the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop. Located in the historic Capitol Hill neighborhood in Washington, DC, CHAL is composed of approximately 100 artists. Each season CHAL mounts a series of seven juried exhibitions and conducts gallery talks at the openings; CHAL hosts lectures on a variety of art related topics, offers workshops, and strives to develop a supportive artistic community. The greater Washington community is encouraged to participate in all of these events.

JUROR: I am honored to return as this year's juror.

ENTRY: Selections for the show will be made by the judge from JPEG images submitted by the artists. All work must be original and signed by the artist. Any work previously shown at a Capitol Hill ART League juried show is ineligible. All work must have been created within the last three years.

ENTRY FEES: Up to 3 entries may be submitted for a non-refundable fee of $15 for current Capitol Hill Art League members or $30 for the community at large (non members). Up to two additional entries may be submitted at $5 each. Artists submitting 3-dimensional work may provide two images of each piece.

AWARDS: Awards will be decided by the judge and will include cash awards for ‘Best in Show’, and ‘Merit’ awards. Two Honorable mentions will be awarded. All awards will be presented at the opening reception with the judge’s talk on Saturday, May 12, 2011 from 5:00-7:00 PM.

SALES: A 30% commission will be deducted from CHAL members’ exhibition sales and 35% commission on all non-member exhibition sales. All work must be for sale and the price submitted on the registration form will be the price presented at the time of the show for accepted work.

Exhibition Calendar:
April 19, 2012 - deadline for entries
April 30, 2012 - Notification sent to accepted Artists
May 4-9, 2012 - Art delivery dates
May 12, 2012 - Artists’ Reception and Awards, Presentation (5:00 - 7:00 pm)
June 1, 2012 - Exhibition closes
June 2-6, 2012 - Pick up artwork

Contact info: Prospectus at:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Artomatic Artist Registration Now Open

Registration is now open for artists and performers to display work at Artomatic 2012, the DC area's biggest free arts event, being held from May 18 to June 23 in Crystal City at Vornado/Charles E. Smith's1851 South Bell Street. Artists, performers, filmmakers, and creatives of all types may now register to participate in Artomatic at

Anyone can participate in Artomatic - there are no criteria to register, and space is allocated on a first-come, first serve basis. At its last event in 2009, Artomatic attracted more than 76,000 visitors to see work by more than 1,200 artists, and more than 600 performances. This year, Artomatic expects to attract even more artists, performers, and visitors than ever before.

Bethesda Row Arts Festival

The 15th annual Bethesda Row Arts Festival will take place Saturday, October 20 and Sunday, October 21, 2012. The 2012 application is now available, and artists are invited to apply online at ZAPPLICATION. The deadline to apply is May 20, 2012.

Questions? Call 301.637.5715.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Woman Refusing to See Men

Below are three images of my latest marriage of embedded electronics with drawing. It is titled "Woman Refusing to See Men" and the embedded digital player rotates about 50 portraits of me from age 4 to present. It's about 14 x 23 inches once matted and framed.

Woman Refusing to See Men by F. Lennox Campello

Woman Refusing to See Men by F. Lennox Campello

Woman Refusing to See Men by F. Lennox Campello

Monday, April 09, 2012

Tate on TV

Last Sunday, DC public television WETA TV (channel 26) broadcasted Vincent Gaines' documentary on the work and motivations of my good bud Tim Tate - who just returned from his successful Fulbright assignment in the UK.

The film is "Hearts of Glass" and it is scheduled to re-air again on Wednesday, April 11, 2012 at 5:30 pm. Get those TiVos set!

Open Studios this weekend

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Allen Quotes

If you're not failing every now and again, it's a sign you're not doing anything very innovative.
--- Woody Allen

Opportunity for Artists

Deadline: April 17, 2012

You've got nine days to make it! The Contemporary Arts Center of Las Vegas is accepting submissions for solo shows or group installations from artists and curators for consideration for their 2012-2013 exhibition season. All mediums and disciplines will be considered. Any work presented at the Contemporary Arts Center must be a body of new or recent work executed within the past 2 years. Emerging or mid-career artists, members or non-members, may submit proposals.

All the details are here.

Questions? Contact Exhibition Committee at the Contemporary Arts Center, Las Vegas, or 702-382-3886.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

A new idea

Today being Holy Saturday (Easter Vigil) as well as the first day of Passover, an idea for a new video drawing piece popped into my head (no pun intended as you will see soon)...

The idea is to create a large drawing of Judith with the head of Holophernes. His head would have an embedded digital component which would rotate images of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and all of the real rulers of Iran, the "I wanna end the world" scary Ayatollahs.

Clearly the idea is driven by the state of the world today, where Israel appears to be in the same precarious situation as when faced with Nebuchadnezzar's general.

Bethulia was saved by Judith; let's hope 21st century reasoning saves us from 5th century mindsets.

Thomas Kinkade

American artist Thomas Kinkaid, known to his ten million collectors as the "painter of light," has bitten the dust:

The death of popular artist Thomas Kinkade is certain to ignite controversy regarding the painter’s legacy. Known for his renderings of luminous landscapes and street scenes, often captured at twilight, the so-called painter of light, a Christian who said that God guided his brush, died Friday at 54 of natural causes.

Regarded as both a master of kitsch and a genius of commercial marketing, Kinkade, a graduate of Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, discovered a lucrative formula for his art at an early age. He and his wife, Nanette, initially sold his painting for $35 apiece. Saturday morning on EBay, a 30-by-48-inch canvas of a stormy mountain range by Kinkade was listed at $95,000.
Read more about it here.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Hot Water

My wife has an incredible resistance to hot water, if you open a faucet in this house and stick your hands in the water before checking the temperature, you will most likely get a 4th degree burn.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Opportunity for Artists

When: Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Out of Order is the Maryland Art Place's Annual free-hung Benefit Exhibition, Silent Auction and Party!

This is a great opportunity for artists to (a) help a great art venue and (b) sell work and get 50% of the Samolians.

For more details, access their website: or call 410-962-8565.

Start preparing now...

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Hispanic or Latino? Neither!

Nearly four decades after the United States government mandated the use of the terms “Hispanic” or “Latino” to categorize Americans who trace their roots to Spanish-speaking countries, a new nationwide survey of Hispanic adults finds that these terms still haven’t been fully embraced by Hispanics themselves.
Very interesting new report on one of my pet peeves from The Pew Research Center... read it here.

Opportunity for Artists

There has been a Deadline Extension for Call for Entries for MPA's summer juried exhibition "Something and Nothing: Activating the Void"

This exhibition will bring together artists whose work deals with space, inclusion or absence. Many artists pay close attention to the “negative space” in their work, and often what is not included or that which is in-between is just as important as what is. For this exhibition, they are looking for works that explore this territory, either in a conceptual or formal way.

The juror will be J.W. Mahoney who is an artist, critic, and independent curator who serves as Washington’s Corresponding Editor for Art in America. He is an Affiliate Professor of Visual Arts at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, and his latest exhibition “Canceral” will open at Curator’s Office in Washington in May of this year.

Important dates:

April 11 Deadline for submissions

June 14 - July 28 Exhibition

For more information and the entry form, visit

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Things that make me go Uh?

As a former rock-throwing liberal who's evolved into a social progressive and a fiscal conservative, and thus feels more relaxed now as a registered independent voter who's seldom seduced by the dogma of both nutty ends of our major parties, I went to vote today knowing that as a registered independent I would not be able to cast my vote in Maryland for either the Democrats or Republican candidates for anything.

"What party sir?", asked the nice lady at the voting station. I told her that I was an independent.

"Then you are aware that you'll only be voting for the Board of Education candidates?" she added.

"I know," I responded.

"Some people have been surprised and upset by that," she expanded as she handed me the plastic card with an embedded chip in it.

"Why?" I asked. "It was clear to me that as a registered independent, Maryland is one of those states that doesn't allow us to vote for Democrats or Republicans during the primaries."

She looked at me, almost expecting me to figure out the great illogical consequence of what I would figure out next.

And I did.

"But wait!" I almost shouted, and the nice old lady behind me in line jumped back a little. "Why can't I vote for independent candidates?" I looked at her, already knowing that she had heard this song before.

"Doesn't make sense does it?" she sighed. "People have been complaining all day."

What's up with that Maryland?

And yet another art scammer!

I've started a conversation with this rip-off master:

Subject: ArtFile Online: Asere Si o No? 2009 Charcoal on Paper 19 x 48 inches
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 10:55:28 -0400

Morning,I would love to purchase Asere Si o No? 2009, Charcoal on Paper 19 x 48 inches ,please get back to me with details..I appreciate your prompt response

And my response

From: Lenny Campello
Subject: RE: ArtFile Online: Asere Si o No? 2009 Charcoal on Paper 19 x 48 inches
Date: Friday, March 30, 2012, 12:52 AM

Dr. Greene,

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I was about to be evicted from my home due to lack of money to pay my rent... this will allow my six daughters and I to stay here 2-3 more months.... I have shown your email to my landlord and he's allowing me to complete this sale and then pay him for the overdue rent.

What details do you need?

Blessings to you and your family.


And he responds in turn

Date: Fri, 30 Mar 2012 03:34:34 -0700
Subject: RE: ArtFile Online: Asere Si o No? 2009 Charcoal on Paper 19 x 48 inches

you havent even told me the price and how you want payment made..kindly get back to me with those,thanks

So, I then lead him on more:

Subject: RE: ArtFile Online: Asere Si o No? 2009 Charcoal on Paper 19 x 48 inches
Date: Tue, 3 Apr 2012 20:21:29 +0000

Dr. Greene,

How I hate to sully the transaction of art with talk of money... but I must pay my rent... I hope you understand.

Will you be paying for shipping fees? Where will I be shipping this wondrous creation of mine?

My six daughters, my landlord and I send you blessings.


Monday, April 02, 2012

Art Scam Alert

Here's the text and email address of the would be scammer:

Morning,I am interested in buying your True Believer 2009 Charcoal and Colored Pencils on Paper 24 x 14 inches ,i would like to know how payment would be made,and the price you listed for it.have a nice day..I appreciate your prompt response

Sunday, April 01, 2012

You know I'm gonna go see this show...