Wednesday, November 30, 2011

She's the Sky

A woman in the sky, or some part of, can be a Surrealist device. I guess Man Ray’s fabulous lips across the universe is the first image to come to my mind, but I think there must be other examples. In the case of the Anonymous Women however I am not thinking of just sexy dreams and desires, but of how glamorous women function in popular culture, what they hawk and promote, where they are supposed to be. And where they’re not.

Some skies, like the one directly above, are almost too beautiful to use. Almost anyone I put in there would look good, too good and the golden plains gave such an all American feeling. I had to find the beautiful face which would confront the viewer a little differently.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Portland Art Collective on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

Robin Olsen and Lorraine Jones of the Portland Art Collective will be my guests on Art Focus this coming Tuesday. There’s more than one art world. Portland especially has an art community that goes way before the formal gallery system. I was kind of surprised at how many creatives were in this single, loosely defined community alone, but I shouldn’t be.

The Collective is an eclectic group of 30 women artists who have been meeting at Multnomah Arts Center for eight years, sharing work and opportunities. They work in a variety of mediums including jewelry, fiber, glass, collage, painting, and printmaking.

For the past five years, they have held their annual "Open Doors" show the first weekend in Dec. at Multnomah Arts Center. Instead of purchasing panels to display their art, the group gathered and repurposed 60 old doors, and use those as the focal point of the show.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

foreGround on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

Jeff Jahn has curated foreGround at the Littman Gallery. Artists include Ben Young, Jim Neidhardt, Zach Davis, Arcy Douglass, Jacqueline Ehlis and Matthew Picton. Jahn and Douglass will be my guests on Art Focus this coming Tuesday, the 22nd.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Natalie Wood Targets

Natalie Wood's death is back in the news. It never seemed quite right to me, although I surely don't have enough facts to have an informed opinion. I made work around it instead.

I remember when I first considered the collage above. I was a little uncertain at first about obscuring the target. But if you make as many collages as I have around the target (so far, 58), you're going to find many differents ways to utilize it, including hiding it.

From what I understand, she couldn't swim.
Jeff Jahn had some great things to say about the Wood Targets in particular in this piece in PORT.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The House of Moe

1979 by Randy Moe at the Independent brings my past out of the woodwork. Friends I haven’t seen in many years stop by. They tell the tales of some of the people in this show. For instance, Brian, above in the red, owns a record store in Vancouver, WA. Phil, in the shades, is unfortunately no longer with us.

Ed Casey, looking like a movie star above, is a filmmaker today in NYC. He was sweet enough to come to my opening of reCovered at frosch&portmann this past summer. His latest film, Voyeur, is at festivals right now.And of course Mike King, above, is a very well known graphic artist for the music world. When I knew him in 1979 he made posters – and he still does. I especially love this portrait, the black on black and the treatment of the clothes. What strikes me about the all the styling is how un-styled it was. It's thriftstore as opposed to Westwood, but even in the thrift, it's not like it screams a certain vintage. We all pulled stuff together and people gave us things too, dressed us. That is actually a major way Randy functioned at the time - we called him The House of Moe. He had some of the best gear.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Laurie Danial on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

My next guest on Art Focus is Laurie Danial, who has a show at Froelick right now. The show is comprised of paintings and prints and is called Control Release Control. I think you can trace the origin of the name by just looking at the work. The paintings reveal a multitude of directions, thoughts, marks, meandering, some hard and some not and very much just letting go. You can feel the play but you also sense the anxiety. The paintings provide ongoing experience, new things to come across. They are generous and not necessarily "quiet" and for this, I'm grateful. She told me the other day that no one is painting like her right now, as if it might not be in trend. But I think there are artists showing in NYC these days who do travel similar ground, or similar processes. It’s a beautiful show.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Disjecta Auction

Tonight is the Disjecta auction. I have donated a diptych - Hot Spot and Van Gogh. They came from the Richter Scale. Sure, you can hang them separately and I painted them separately, but they look cool hung together, horizonally or vertically. These are some great artists contributing this year.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Middle Ages

The two most recent Anonymous Women couldn't be more different. No. 31 was 70s-like spage age. But No. 32 is from The Middle Ages. The paper was old, thin and sepia toned. I've always liked those cathedrals. I held on to the image, not sure how to use it for years. Well, the paper of the woman is almost just as old. That is sometimes how things happen. The physical materials dictate content to a degree. It is happening more and more, which I enjoy - obviously it's a given with paint. Here, it made the marriage. Plus the fright of course.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Martha Lee on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

Last year Martha Lee took over as owner of the Laura Russo Gallery after Laura died from cancer (D. K. Row reported on it here). She already was the director for many years. It took me awhile, but she'll finally be my guest on Art Focus.

I've been on hiatus from the show for almost six weeks. The residency at Crow's Shadow was part of it and also I've been able to get other guest hosts in there. We are volunteers - I greatly appreciate all help I can get with keeping Art Focus on KBOO alive.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

1979 Reception

Thanks to everyone who came out for Randy Moe at the Independent.

It was the best attended opening so far. And talk about a wild crowd. The show closes December 3rd.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

1979 by Randy Moe at the Independent

A couple of years ago I worked extensively on the documentary film Alien Boy, first in production and then, as a photo archivist. I tracked down photos mainly dating from Jim Jim’s punk period, which is when I knew him. This also meant collecting posters, vinyl, any kind of memoirs - a real treasure trove. During this job I discovered that the artist Randy Moe had a great collection of Polaroids, including the one which was the basis of the portrait above.

Randy and I have collaborated on several exhibitions in the past decade, all of them portraiture. It speaks to his excellence that we’ve always sold a lot, something I don’t think is any kind of given when it comes to portraits. In Randy’s case, no, you don’t have to know the subject to want the piece. That’s really unusual. When I opened the Independent, I asked him if he was working on anything. He said no, he was rather at a loss as to what to draw. I then said: “What about those polaroids? Why don’t you draw them?”

Randy decided to make 12 pieces, all based on a single roll of Polaroids shot in 1979 - hence the name of the exhibition. The photos themselves are the editors of the project. Some choices are random while some of the subjects are quite famous, at least when it comes to that era in Portland music history. Virtually all of them were in bands, some in several. Four are no longer with us. Of course everyone is very beautiful.

Please join me at a reception for the artist this First Thursday, November 3rd, 6 – 9PM. BTW, Randy Moe is also taking commissions, at least for a short while. Above is Suzanne Wlaschin Wiest, AKA Beest, who used to be in The Ziplocs.