Monday, June 14, 2010

What Pulse said...

For the third year in a row this is what the selection committee at the Pulse Art Fair Miami said to me:

Oh well... there are 24 other fairs to apply to... sigh.

Lisa MCCarthy is No. 5

Lisa McCarthy is Jessica Dawson's excellent choice in the Real Art D.C. thingie the WaPo is doing.

Judith Peck at Hillyer Art Space

Deanna Schwartzberg reviews the current show by Judith Peck at the International Art and Artists Hillyer Art Space in DC.

Judith Peck is both an artist and an intellectual. Her paintings are often generated by her abiding concern for social justice. Although she infuses her work with ideological content, it is in the exquisite execution of her subject, that we see not only the process of her mind, but her soul as well.

In her current exhibit, "Original Position", at the International Art and Artists Hillyer Art Space, June 4-26, 2010, it is a thought experiment by John Rawls that inspired the artist.

Judith PeckRawls states that if we step behind a veil to cloak our knowledge of our individual abilities, social status and income, it might render us able to effectively consider the interests of all people, especially the least advantaged members of society.

Ms. Peck incorporates the concept of the veil in all of the portraits on display, each taking on a different aspect of the human condition, i.e. gender, passion, and conscience. Without prior knowledge of the artist's text, these paintings speak to us on a visceral level. Her portraits are drawn from live models and composites of the human face and appear to be lit from within. They are infused with a mysterious drama that captures the viewer's attention. On closer examination, we become transfixed in the subject's gaze. These subjects are never emotionally distant, their eyes penetrate and connect with the viewer's own, engaging our thoughts and connecting with our emotions.

On a recent trip to Boston, I viewed Rembrandt's "Self Portrait" in the Gardner Museum. I was enthralled with the delicacy of the painted surface, the fullness of his mouth, the rich textures of his hair and clothing, but most importantly, his eyes. Through his eyes I felt a knowing kinship with the sitter. What if Rembrandt were alive today? He would not only give us a window into the world around him, but into his own mind as well. As a modern artist, he might use his art to relate in visual terms the essence of his core beliefs and allow us as viewers to engage in a dialogue with him.

Judith Peck is a classically trained artist of infinite skill. Her work captivated me with a similar intimacy I found in the Rembrandt portrait, with the added benefit of symbolic imagery and metaphor that in the modern world serve to make the art both personal and timely.
About the author: Deanna Schwartzberg is an artist and painting instructor in the Washington area. She has taught painting at various venues including the Corcoran College of Art and Design, Vis Arts, and at the Art League School in the Torpedo Factory for over twenty years. She received a B.S. in Art Education from N.Y.U. and studied painting at the Art Student's League of New York with a student of Hans Hoffman. Deanna's work in painted paper assemblage and paintings on canvas deal with abstracting the human form.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Never too late to be discovered

An artist who rejected the call of the art market in his youth, and was discovered surrounded by a lifetime of unseen work when he was more than 100 years old, is to have his first museum exhibition this month.
Read Colin Gleadell's story on Stanley Lewis in the Telegraph here.

How the ChiComs know that Strasburg is pitching in Cleveland tonight

Nationals Stephen Strasburg in China


The Bethesda Painting Awards were announced last Friday (I never get any press releases from those folks anymore).

Nora Sturges of Baltimore, MD was awarded “Best in Show” with $10,000; Katherine Mann of Washington, D.C. was named second place and was given $2,000, and Deborah Ellis of Alexandria, VA was awarded third place and received $1,000.

Nora Sturges holds an MFA in painting from Ohio University and is currently associate professor of art and head of painting at Towson University.

The show is on at the Fraser Gallery through June 26, 2010.

William Butler Yeats

Happy birthday to one of my favorite poets and a pretty good artist as well: William Butler Yeats (1865–1939), born on June 12, 1865 in Dublin, Ireland.

"A Poet to his beloved"
by: William Butler Yeats

Bring you with reverent hands
The books of my numberless dreams,
White woman that passion has worn
As the tide wears the dove-grey sands,
And with heart more old than the horn
That is brimmed from the pale fire of time:
White woman with numberless dreams,
I bring you my passionate rhyme.

Real Art D.C. Finalist Two: Jenny Yang

Jenny Yang's excellent photographs attracted Jessica Dawson's attention is she is the second Real Art D.C. selection. Read all about it here.

Book Report

As I noted a while back, I have been retained by Schiffer Publishing to edit and create a coffee table size art book titled “100 Washington, DC Artists” as part of their series on national artists.

The book will cover 100 key artists working in the Greater Washington, DC area which encompasses the District and surrounding suburban areas of Maryland and Virginia.

Like all Schiffer art books, this will be a high quality book which will be available nationally and online, as well as available locally at museum gift shops and local area bookstores. Each artist will have a two page spread, with 3-4 images of their work, a small head shot, and a 300 word essay about their work.

So far I've spent a lot of free time editing, cutting and pasting the captions to about 1,000 images for the book. On the good side, I am astounded as to the depth and breadth of artistic creativity in our area. Anyone who says that DC area art is traditional and/or conservative needs to take a look at the 21,000 slides in the collection of the WPA (as I did for "Seven") or to about 1,000 recent images of work by the top 100 artists in our region; then come talk to me about "traditional" and "conservative."

Richard The Great Pryor

On the bad side, I can't believe how many artists can't follow simple directions such as "write this in the third person." I actually had a college professor ask me what the "3rd person" was. Don't even let me get started on how many variants of writing a caption there are out there. Just in case, the basic elements of a caption are: title of the artwork, year created, media, and size.

Back on the good side, I am honored to be working with such a talented and motley crew. The book will be available in the Spring of 2011; I've already entered into discussions with the publisher for a second book with another 100 DMV artists.

Talking about books: Scored another giant deal on multiple signed modern first editions to add to my collection! Sad when used book stores close though...

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Mr. President, please do something...

BP oil disaster by F. Lennox Campello


To DC's Matt Sesow, whose new solo show with Access Gallery in Denver, Colorado, opens with 41 new paintings, yes 41, next Friday.

Meet the Artist Reception: Friday, June 18, 6:00 – 9:00 pm

Live Painting and Gallery Talk: Friday June 18, 12:00–4:00 pm

Family Art Day: Saturday June 19, 10:00–1:00 pm

First Friday Reception: July 2, 6:00 – 9:00 pm

Facebook campaigning

The CP's Jonathan L. Fischer picks up on the Facebook campaign to get the Hirshhorn to pay attention to DC video sculptor Tim Tate.

We can make this happen! Add your voice here!

Friday, June 11, 2010


Artisphere, the metropolitan-DC area’s newest cultural center, is set to open in Arlington on 10-10-10 with multiple venues, including: a 4,000 square foot ballroom space, a wi-fi lounge, a café, three distinct gallery spaces, as well as three flexible theater/performance spaces!

There are also three job openings as Artisphere is now accepting applications for the following positions:

1. New Media Curator ($43,804.80 - $72,425.60 Annually)
2. Program Director ($53,580.80 - $88,545.60 Annually)
3. Executive Director ($56,700.80 - $116,708.80 Annually).

There's also a call for exhibition proposals (due June 15). All proposals must be submitted via You can download the proposal submission form here.

Working hard

Hard work always has a payoff for artists. And one of the DMV's hardest working artists is my good bud Tim Tate. The dude has has three openings coming next week alone!

- Swanson Reed Gallery, Louisville, KY. Opening on Friday evening, June 11.

- Fuller Museum, Brockton, Mass. Sunday afternoon, June 13. There's a 1pm lecture and a 2pm reception.

- Scope Art Basel, Switzerland with San Francisco's Micaela Gallery, June 15-20, 2010.

Join the Facebook group We want to see Tim Tate's video art work in the Hirshhorn Museum!! here.

Tomorrow: Grand Opening of new gallery in Loudoun

The Gateway Gallery is a new artists' owned and run cooperative gallery located in the Hill High Orchard Building, just west of Round Hill on Route 7 and certainly a landmark for western Loudoun.

The Grand Opening is Saturday, June 12 starting at 6PM and there will be demos from several of the 30 artist members. Look for the work of Suzanne Lago Arthur to stand out.

Tim Tate for the Hirshhorn Museum

This is a Facebook group dedicated to convincing the curatorial staff and acquisition committee of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden to finally purchase and exhibit some of the amazing video art pieces from Tim Tate.

My good friend Tim Tate is one of the most renowned award winning artists in this region. He works in self-contained video installations and projections.

Hirshhorn: Look in your own backyard for an artist making a huge impact internationally.

Hope they are listening! Check it out here.

Tate has three openings coming next week alone:

- Swanson Reed Gallery, Louisville, KY. Opening on Friday evening, June 11.

- Fuller Museum, Brockton, Mass. Sunday afternoon, June 13. There's a 1pm lecture with Fo Wilson and a 2pm reception.
- Scope Art Basel, Switzerland with San Francisco's Micaela Gallery, June 15-20, 2010.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Opportunity for Printmakers

Deadline: August 9, 2010

The 2010 Harnett Biennial of American Prints is the ninth competitive national exhibition organized by the University of Richmond Museums. Open to all forms of prints, the exhibition is presented as a celebration and examination of contemporary printmaking by artists throughout the United States. The Harnett Biennial will be on view from October 21 to December 5, 2010, in the Joel and Lila Harnett Museum of Art.

The juror of this biennial is Laura Kruger, Curator of the Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion Museum, New York.

The deadline for submission is August 9, 2010. The exhibition is open to all artists residing in the United States. Entries must be in the category of printmaking using any traditional and/or experimental techniques and media. Eligible entries include prints on paper using, but not limited to, such media as intaglio, relief, planographic, stencil, monotype, and digital processes (no giclée reproductions are allowed). Photographs on paper are eligible. Prints must have been completed in the last two years.

The entry form can be downloaded from the University of Richmond Museums website here, or requested by email at A hard copy is available at the museums or can be mailed upon request by calling 804-287-6424.

Wanna go to an opening tomorrow

Tomorrow is the opening of the work by the selected finalists for the $14,000 Bethesda Painting Awards. The selected finalists will display their work through June 26, 2010 in downtown Bethesda at the Fraser Gallery. The opening exhibition of the Bethesda Painting Awards winners is on Friday, June 11th from 6-9pm held in conjunction with the Bethesda Art Walk. Many of the finalists and winners will be on hand to discuss their work.

The Bethesda Painting Awards is downtown Bethesda's annual juried art competition that exclusively honors painters from Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Congrats to all the finalists!

Deborah Addison Coburn, Rockville, MD
Sheila Blake, Takoma Park, MD
Deborah Ellis, Alexandria, VA
James Halloran, Arlington, VA
Katherine Mann, Washington, D.C.
Lindsay McCulloch, Chevy Chase, MD
Michele Montalbano, Burke, VA
Carol Phifer, Fredericksburg, VA
Nora Sturges, Baltimore, MD

PostSecreting all over the world

I think that by now even the most neocon art critics and jaded art observers around this town realize that the greatest and largest cooperative art project in the history of the world is my good friend Frank Warren's ongoing and ever-growing PostSecret.

There will be PostSecret events in the Fall of 2010 in California, Texas, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Mexico, Canada and many more places.

See the full tour schedule with dates and locations soon by following PostSecret on Facebook.

By the way, I think that Warren's immense global art project belongs in the next Whitney Biennial.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Art Basel pass

If anybody wants a couple of complimentary VIP passes to Art Basel in Basel, Switzerland, which entitle you to also get into most of the satellite art fairs, drop me an email. First come, first served!