Monday, July 29, 2019

Randy Ray, RIP

My best friend from when I was in the Navy, Randy Ray died unexpectedly on the 28th doing what he did best: serving his country in a submarine somewhere in the planet underwater.

From his obit:
William Randall Ray (AKA Randy), 63, of Santee, CA, passed away at sea on June 27th, 2019, doing what he loved. Randy is survived by his wife, Karen, of 44 years, mother Shirley Ray, daughters Misty (Jesse) Rubinol, Rachael (Valentine) Chavez, Amy (Matt) Knippel, grandchildren Riley Rubinol, Cecily Rubinol, Mateo Rubinol, Amelia Chavez, Gabriella Chavez, Owen Knippel, Wyatt Knippel, Joaquin Chavez, 5 siblings, and many loving nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family and friends.
Randy served his country faithfully, 20 years active duty and 25 as a Department of the Navy civil servant. He enlisted in the US Navy in June of 1973. While his latest role as an Ice Pilot working with the Arctic Submarine Laboratory was his most fulfilling, he held several enlisted and officer positions during his career in the US Navy and was respected by men & women up and down the chain of command; seamen, airmen, captains and admirals alike.
When he wasn’t navigating glaciers & reefs to guide submarines safely to their destinations, he enjoyed music, sports, spending time with family & catering to his wife’s & daughters’ every want & need. He had dreams to retire from civil service in September of 2020 and to move to Tennessee with wife, Karen. Randy aspired to spend his retirement fishing Tennessee rivers, coaching little league and possibly even dabbling in community theater. Randy was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and a friend to every person he met – his passing is felt deeply by many near and far. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for your support in memorial contributions to Autism Speaks as Randy was a fierce advocate for all of his grandchildren.
I remember when we were stationed together in San Diego, and then in Newport, and then at the University of Washington, and we were commissioned together... but my strongest memory of Randy, is when we were in the San Diego Navy softball finals, and Youngblood was at bat, and all we needed was one out to win the championship, and we were up by one, bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, two outs... 

And I was the pitcher and the count was 3 -2, and for some reason I always seemed to walk her, and Randy called time out, ran to the pitcher's mound from the outfield, and said to me, "If you walk her again, I will kick your ass." He then ran back to the outfield, and I thought about it, and pitched her a perfect strike... 

Fair winds and following seas my dear friend.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Four artists demanded their works be removed from the Whitney Biennial

The four artists’ letter comes just two days after Artforum published an essay by Hannah Black, Ciarán Finlayson, and Tobi Haslett titled “The Tear Gas Biennial,” in which they called out the artists in the biennial for not boycotting the exhibition over Kanders’s presence on the museum’s board.
What this really means: We (anyone) can now start going throught the boards of all museums, and universities, and 503(c) and whatever, and if we don't like what one of the trustees or board members does for a living, of where his/her samolians are invested in, we can now demand that artist do not show in those museums or organizations!*

Read the whole puzzling article here.

* This of course, does not apply if the person in question is also a major donor to the right causes... cough, cough... 

Friday, July 19, 2019

Hamiltonian Artists has announced their five new Fellows! Introducing:

  • Amber Eve Anderson (MFA, Maryland Institute College of Art)
  • Tommy Bobo (MFA, Maryland Institute College of Art)
  • Akea Brionne Brown (BFA, Maryland Institute College of Art)
  • Madeline Stratton (MFA, Maryland Institute College of Art)
  • Yacine Fall (BFA, The George Washington University Corcoran School of Arts)
The 2019 Hamiltonian Fellows were selected from a competitive pool of 95 high quality of applicants nationwide. The External Review Panel, comprised of five art professionals, evaluated every application and gathered to discuss each artist based on criteria regarding "artistic merit and relevance to today's art world."

The jurors were:

Colette Veasey-Cullors - an Associate Dean for Design and Media at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)

Ryan Dattilo - a lawyer, art collector, and is also on the board of the Washington Project for the Arts

Nara Park - a sculptor and installation artist based in Washington, D.C.

Springsteen - a contemporary art gallery founded by Hunter Bradley and Amelia Szpiech in Baltimore, MD

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Review of my current solo show

He has examined insular communities from the Galician Massif to the Hasid in Brooklyn, incorporated the Mexican artist Frieda Kahlo into his work (just before a movie about her life took the world by storm) and depicted Che Guevera, the controversial, and revolutionary, physician, author, activist, guerrilla leader and diplomat who, Campello labeled somewhat dismissively in his show as “T-shirt man” because of his unlikely pop-icon status. Fantasy, reality, romanticism and realism — Campello centers his art deeply in context, whether it’s special lighting, revealing code or multimedia interactive experience. 
“The main piece in this show is, at least for me, my up-to-date culmination of the incorporation of technology,” he said. “What you see is the back of a woman in a museum, looking at two pieces of artwork on the wall — every five seconds a new portrait pops up — famous artists, politicians— and hidden in the middle of the piece is a spy camera, so as you approach the work, you staring at it becomes part of that portrait gallery. You now are the artwork.”
Read the whole cool piece by Chris Slattery here

Call to Maryland artists!

This September, Maryland Art Place (MAP) in partnership with the Maryland State Art Council (MSAC) will host a statewide juried exhibition curated by a panel of jurors to highlight the wide range of artists and artwork featured on the Maryland State Arts Council Artist Registry. The exhibition will take place at Maryland Art Place located at 218 West Saratoga St. from September 19 – November 10th. All Maryland artists who reside within the state are eligible and encouraged to apply. To be considered for the exhibition you must reside in Maryland, have a Maryland State Arts Council Artist Registry profile, and have created or updated your registry profile on or between the dates of June 26, 2019 – July 20, 2019. Please note: In order for an artist profile to be visible on the registry at least one image must be uploaded; otherwise your profile will be invisible and unsuitable for review/consideration. 

To join the registry please visit :

 How It Works:
Create or update an artist profile on the Maryland Artist Registry between the dates of June 26 – July 20, 2019. Artists may add up to 6 images, sound or video files (3 minutes max of sound or video will be viewed per artist). All media (including literary arts) will be considered with a heavy emphasis placed on visual and performing arts. When adding artwork users are required to include size, dimensions, and titles. It is advantageous to upload artwork that is recent and currently available. If selected for the exhibition the work must be available throughout the duration of the show from September 19 - November 10th. For questions or help creating your Registry Profile please contact Caitlin Gill:


Dr. Susan J. Isaacs 
Jeremy Stern

Ada Pinkston
Hoesy Corona
Laure Drogoul


Dates For Open Call: 
Wednesday, June 26 – Saturday, July 20
AMENDED: Notification of Selection Sent Out:
Tuesday, August 13, 2019
Performance artists will be contacted before September 1st with an invitation to participate.
Artwork Drop Off:
Tuesday, September 3rd– Saturday, September 7th
Exhibition Dates: 
Thursday, September 19th – Sunday, November 10th
Artwork Pick Up:
Tuesday, September 12th – Saturday, November 16th

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Call for Black Female Artists

Deadline: August 19, 2019. 

Sweetwater Center for the Arts in Sewickley, PA is seeking works created by Black female artists that explore ideas, experiences, triumphs and struggles specific to being a Black woman in America. LISTEN seeks to illuminate intersectionality, give voice to Black women, and encourage all to hear their realities. LISTEN is part of the 23rd Annual MAVUNO Festival of African American Art & Culture. 

Exhibition dates: September 19 – October 26, 2019. 

For details and to apply - click HERE.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Lecture: On Identity in the Arts: What Does It Mean to be Latinx?

Lecture: On Identity in the Arts: What Does It Mean to be Latinx?

Montpelier Art Center

9652 Muirkirk Rd

Saturday, September 14, 2pm.

I will be delving deep into the history and evolution of the Latino ethnic label and then discussing important questions on the issue while wrapping it around the context of the fine arts in a sometimes funny, but always informative presentation. 

Lecture is free and open to the public.

Friday, July 12, 2019

You learn something every day!

The Meaning behind One of the Most Oddly Erotic Paintings in Western Art by Hannah Williams

Portrait présumé de Gabrielle d'Estrées et de sa sur la duchesse de Villars (Gabrielle d'Estrées and One of Her Sisters), 16th century, Musée du Louvre
Despite what it might look like to the contemporary viewer, a purely queer reading of the work would be misguided. Rather than a depiction of lesbian foreplay, most art historians interpret the painting as an announcement that Gabrielle is pregnant with the King’s illegitimate son. It’s her sister who is signaling this to the audience, not her lover. The fingers wrapped around Gabrielle’s nipple symbolizes the latter’s fertility, an allusion emphasized by the presence of the figure sewing baby’s clothes in the back of the painting.
Read the whole fascinating article here. 

Tuesday, July 09, 2019

Virginia Commission for the Arts Announces Return of Artist Fellowships

The Virginia Commission for the Arts is pleased to announce the return of the Artist Fellowship program in FY20, in the discipline of crafts. Four artists will be considered for fellowships of $3,500 each, recognizing the creativity of Virginia artists and their pursuit of artistic excellence. 
Application Deadline
Applications will be accepted via the online grant portal. The deadline for application submission is Tuesday, October 1, 2019, at 5:00 PM.
  • artists who are legal residents of Virginia;
  • artists who plan to remain in Virginia during the grant period;
  • a legal resident who possesses a valid Virginia driver’s license and/or pays income taxes in Virginia and/or is a registered Virginia voter;
  • artists who are 18 years of age;
  • artists may receive only one fellowship award from the Commission within a four-year period. 
Amount of Assistance
Four artist will be considered for fellowships of $3,500 each. Artists are not required to provide matching funds. 
A complete application must contain:
  • consistent quality of the artist’s work;
  • applicant’s record of professional arts activity and achievement as reflected in the resume/CV;
  • fellowship potential to result in significant advancement for the artist’s career. 
In speaking to the return of the Artist Fellowship program, Executive Director Janet Starke said, “We are thrilled to be able to reinstate the Artist Fellowship program, thanks to increased funding from the General Assembly for the year ahead. Too, we are pleased to reinstate the program with a focus on crafts, a genre that is really a cornerstone of so many cultures represented in the Commonwealth.”
As with all grants by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, applications for Artist Fellowships will only be accepted through their online grants portal. Visit here for more Fellowship information.  

Sunday, July 07, 2019

The Louvre will move the Mona Lisa

Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa (ca. 1503–19), the most popular attraction at the Louvre—which itself is consistently the world’s most visited museum—will be relocating for the summer. Though the painting will remain in its air-conditioned and bulletproof encasement, it will be moved on the evening of July 16th from the huge concrete wall on which it has hung for the last 14 years. It will be relocated into its summer home in the Louvre’s Medici Gallery, some “100 paces” away, as the museum’s director Jean-Luc Martinez told the AFP.
Read the whole story here.

Friday, July 05, 2019

The racist, sadist Che Guevara

My father was part of the 1959 Cuban Revolution, and fought under the command of the Argentine adventurer and mass murderer doctor Ernesto (Ché) Guevara de la Serna Lynch. Heart-broken and disillusioned when the Cuban Revolution betrayed its roots and turned Communist, and after a painful internment at a Cuban concentration camp, he brought our family to the United States as a political refugee in the 1960s.

Guevara is one of those obsessions who returns time and time again to my artwork.

In my solo exhibition which opens today (opening 6-8 PM) at the Stone Tower Gallery in beautiful Glen Echo, Guevara makes an appearance as the most often reproduced portrait in history, as the T-shirt god’s quotes are incorporated into his famous visage, but not in the iconic Korda image (considered the most reproduced photograph in history), but in a laughing image of the true Ché, surrounded by some of his most infamous quotes.

Known as “El Chacal de La Cabaña” (The Jackal of La Cabaña – La Cabaña being the Spanish fortress at the mouth of Havana bay where executions took place) to Cubans, Guevara was the mastermind of the mass executions which took place after the Castro triumph. “I don’t need proof to execute a man,” said Che during an interview published in a Cuban newspaper in 1959, “I only need proof that it is necessary to execute him.”

Hatred is the central element of our struggle! Hatred that is intransigent...hatred so violent that it propels a human being beyond his natural limitations, making him violent and cold- blooded killing machine...We reject any peaceful approach. Violence is inevitable. To establish Socialism rivers of blood must flow! The imperialist enemy must feel like a hunted animal wherever he moves. Thus we’ll destroy him! These hyenas are fit only for extermination. We must keep our hatred alive and fan it to paroxysm! The victory of Socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims!

In “This is Che”, in addition to Guevara’s quotes, an electronic screen, embedded into the mass murderer’s forehead, rotates dozens of images of Guevara’s image in T-shirts from all over the world.

Stone Tower Gallery
7300 MacArthur Blvd.
Glen Echo, MD 20812
Exhibition:  F. Lennox Campello: More Obsessions
Exhibition dates: July 5 to 28, 2019
Gallery Hours: Saturday & Sunday, 11am to 6pm and by appointment
Art Walk Reception: Friday, July 5, 6 to 8pm

Thursday, July 04, 2019

My solo show at the Stone Tower Gallery

My solo show opens tomorrow!

More Obsessions: Thoughts and Things That Keep Living in My Head
Lenny Campello

Stone Tower Gallery | July 5 to 28, 2019

Opening Reception

Friday, July 5, 6pm to 8pm

7300 MacArthur Blvd.  |  Glen Echo, MD 20812

Here are some the works that will be on display - For this show I've created some new works - mostly drawings on unfired broken Bisque as well as some new drawings and watercolors - See ya there Friday!

North Atlantic Mermaid (Syreni Caledonii) Watercolor on Paper, circa 2019 12x36 inches
North Atlantic Mermaid (Syreni Caledonii)
Watercolor on Paper, circa 2019 12x36 inches

"Your portrait in a gallery of portraits"
Charcoal and Conte, Electronic Components, appropriated digital portrait images, miniature spy camera, c. 2017. 40 x 60 inches
Supergirl Flying Naked
Charcoal and color pencils on broken unfired Bisque, circa 2019
Charcoal and conte on Paper, circa 2019
T- Shirt God (This is Che)
Charcoal and conte with embedded electronics on paper, circa 2014

Suddenly, There was no fear
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, 14 inches diameter, circa 2019
The Morrigan
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019

Gym Rat
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019

Eve, Running Away from Eden
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019

Woman Falling from the Sky
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019

Eve, Running Away from Eden
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019

An unmarried man begging his cat for forgiveness
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019
In a private property in Virginia

Suddenly the answer came to her
Charcoal and conte on unfired Bisque, circa 2019
President Obama
Charcoal and conte on borken Bisque, 5x4 inches, c. 2019.

How Do I Love Thee? Sonnets to the Portuguese
Homage to E.B.B. Charcoal on broken Bisque 4x3 inches, c.2019
An unmarried woman
Charcoal and conte on broken unfired Bisque, circa 2019

Frida Kahlo in a Cross of Clouds (Version I) by Campello
Frida Kahlo in a Cross of Clouds (Version I)
Charcoal, conte, mixed media on Unfired Bisque
7x7x3, circa 1980-2017
Four versus One
Charcoal and conte on broken unfired Bisque, circa 2019

La Frida
Charcoal, mixed media on Unfired Bisque
3.5 round x 4 inches, circa 1997-2017
Che Guevara (Castrum Canis)
Charcoal, conte, mixed media on Unfired Bisque
4.5x3.25 inches, circa 2017

Obama Laughing
Charcoal, conte, mixed media on Unfired Bisque
5x3 inches, circa 2017
Two American Sailors
Charcoal and conte on paper, circa 2019
A Contemporary Woman in a Gallery of Past Icons
Charcoal and conte on paper, circa 2018

And here are some installation shots:

Wednesday, July 03, 2019

Art Miami has a new owner

The Art Miami fair group, which includes Art New York, CONTEXT, Aqua Art Miami, Art Wynwood, and others, has been sold to Informa Markets... this is a seismic move in the art fair world!

“It’s a bold and very positive step for us,” Nick Korniloff, Art Miami’s director, who owns the company with two partners, tells artnet News of the sale. During his years with the business, he has grown the fair empire to include CONTEXT, Aqua Art Miami, Art Wynwood, Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary, and Art New York. Over the past year, those fairs have drawn in some 400 dealers and overall attendance of more than 300,000 people. 

Read the whole article here. 

Monday, July 01, 2019