Monday, December 31, 2012

Golden Spot Award Print Exhibition

I wrote extensively about my time at Crow's Shadow here in this blog (the link provides info on the work and the writing). My printmaking residency was a Ford Family Foundation Golden Spot Award. Six artists participated in this residency - Pat Boas, Storm Tharp, Arnold J. Kemp, Susan Murrell, Jenene Nagy and myself. All of our works will show at PDX Contemporary Art for a couple of weeks, opening this coming First Thursday, January 3, 2013, 6 - 8PM. Hope to see you there if you're in Portland.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The Tree

The holidays often give me a special reason to collage. Entire series have begun with a gift effort, such as the Anonymous Women. I have a few women friends who have really helped me with this year and with this time of year in particular. This tree is for them. Thank you so much.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Glenn Clevenger on KBOO

Looking forward to interviewing Glenn Clevenger this coming Tuesday (the 18th) on Art Focus. He has a new show at Pulliam, one in which the paintings have definitely changed. Plus he has these great boxes on view.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Binder Full of Collages at frosch and portmann

Tomorrow night is the opening for A Binder Full of Collages, a group show at frosch and portmann. I am in the show, as is friend and super-curator and great artist James Gallagher. Please stop by if you are in the LES!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Molly Vidor and Nell Warren on KBOO

Warlock by Molly Vidor

This coming Tuesday Joseph Gallivan will guest host Art Focus, interviewing Nell Warren and Molly Vidor, who are showing at PDX. The show is called Black Dove/Sky Forms.

Perhaps some of you will remember Joseph Gallivan as an art writer for the Portland Tribune. In the past I've had other guest hosts but I am particularly excited this time out, as it is hoped that he will become my co-host and truly be a part of Art Focus and KBOO. Fingers crossed.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Fabulous Genius

Anonymous Woman No. 57 looks different to me, not quite like the rest. She looks like a man in drag. She is melded with a Shiva, masculine, almost brawny. She hit a nerve with me as soon as she was manifested, looking a bit like some contemporary male artists and performers who use makeup/drag/my stuff dammit to establish their boundary-breaking mode.

Often s/he will appear as a promotional photograph - clearly a man wearing a shitload of face paint, sometimes not all that differently to all the women I have made up throughout the years. - But when they do it, of course it is so much more serious, edgy,  pushing something, questioning something, about something, clearly they're The Genius.

When I made up women to look like Kim Kardasian or Joan Collins, layering on the false eyelashes and lip gloss, they were seen as surfaces, merely containers to be dismissed. I know the routine well; have created and lived it, both audience and participant. Gloriously artificial females are often the empty object and go no further. I can't define if I was bugged or just confused but it irritated me that a guy can take that armor and get art world street cred and we could not. Why is it that when she does it, she has no content, whereas when he does it, he has a dissertation. Maybe what I am pitching here is The Fabulous Genius, lashes, bleached hair et al, a God, not just a Goddess.

Friday, November 30, 2012

The Diaries 1969 - 2012

The central fact of my life is a diary, not visual art per se. Since 1969 I've kept a paper journal. 154 notebooks so far.

So I was very interested in the online discussion at the Times - Recording our Lives in 2012 ~ Will Diaries be Published in 2050.

A diary is not a memoir. It happens in real time. There's no edit. But of course there is reread and recount and reread and remorse and move on. But there's no true revision.

I'm 56. I think it's time I started to put it online (or publish in some other way), the original diary. Someone today remarked I just love diaries, they are so neat. There's nothing neat or sweet about mine. As with E. B. White, much of my writing was (and is) rubbish. But it is a document of my time, more constant than any other art form.

I'm not sure whether I will transform this URL to the diaries, or created something new. Probably something new. It will be entry by entry and hopefully I can scan all the covers. Wouldn't want to miss all the fashions, band posters and obsessions of the times. It will take years and names will be changed - save maybe those who are dead. Sadly there are quite a few of them.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Brigitte Dortmund on KBOO

Brigitte Dortmund has a show up at Mark Woolley right now. Mark is now at Pioneer Place, forming sort of bridge between the street style of People's Art and the conceptual bent of Place. Dortmund will be my guest on Art Focus this next Tuesday, the 27th.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Carol Benson on KBOO

Carol Benson has a show at Blackfish for the month of November, titled Quadrangles and Other Works. She will be my guest on Art Focus this next Tuesday, the 20th.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Mark R. Smith on KBOO

How much fun it will be to talk to Mark R. Smith on Art Focus this next Tuesday. He is a friend but I am also a big fan. Big big big. 

Currently he is showing Vestibules and Portals, Laminates and Veneers at the Elizabeth Leach Gallery. He must have told me before how he made these works, but I don't recall how the work arrives at such a perfect balance between folksy and slick. Will find out.

Four years ago I interviewed him via You Tube. These works are really different, but the technique is the same. He seems less attached to narrative - although there are exceptions, like our beautiful boys below.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Women at Some Walls

My Anonymous Women are at Some Walls in Oakland. Chris Ashley has written a great introduction and essay, along with posting images. His writing covers so many things so terribly well that I am tempted to cut and paste from it like mad here, but shall refrain. I will note however that I especially enjoyed his definition of photomontage, his referral to anonymous women throughout history, every single thing he said about 1978 and the general juiciness of my play with Judd. Thank you Chris.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Hickory Mertsching at Gallery @ the Jupiter

Today I helped install a new show at Gallery @ the Jupiter, right at the Jupiter Hotel. The show is by Hickory Mertsching and it is called Decay, Growth and the Still Life. Truly a delicious show.

The artist combines the common of our time and place with more traditional elements of nature often found in still life: birds with beer cans, squirrels with chainsaws. The work is delicate but not fey and at its best, dense but not fussy. Some of his past works, seen on his site, were more Gothic and dark, whereas this show has simple white backgrounds. He makes his own frames too, which look like part of the painting. Tomorrow night is the reception for the artist.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Jennifer Jacobs on KBOO

Jennifer Jacobs I have known from her days at PICA. Now she is working with the Affordable Art Fair in Seattle. She will be my guest on Art Focus next Tuesday. The fair runs for 4 days and includes work from over 50 galleries.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Babes of India Suite

It's just about time to end this blog and go on to the next thing. For some time I have felt that a change was due, but there's been so many shifts of late in my life, I couldn't change this blog too.

I am moving again - away from the Gorge and back into town. The Gorge just gave me a respite and regroup, a place to make some work - but it was never home.

As I packed and boxed like crazy, an opportunity to collage is a freestyle form came my way. Chris Haberman asked me to participate in The Big 300 this coming December. Here all are ten works to be shown in December.

"Just make sketches," offered Chris, as a way to Keep It Simple. Still I have spent hours; there seems no easy way to even execute a one + one exercise.

They are all based on an old art history text for Indian Art I studied in 1975. It's fun to cut something I have looked at for nearly 40 years. Hopefully I will have ten made and they will be for sale at the show at People's  in December. They really are a suite and I would love it if they all stayed together.

As usual the autobiography looms large. I have written many words here and deleted them all, so I'll just let the images speak.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

May Barruel and Elizabeth Malaska on KBOO

On October 23, 2012 Art Focus will present a show about work at Nationale by Elizabeth Malaska, called We Never belonged to You.  From the PR: The body—especially the female body—has long occupied a contentious role within art historical discourse. For We Never Belonged to You, painter Elizabeth Malaska calls upon this familiar dichotomy of subject/object in order to both question and confuse the power of the viewer’s gaze.  The artist plus the director of Nationale May Barruel will join me.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


"You gotta have style. It helps you get down the stairs. It helps you get up in the morning. It's a way of life. Without it, you're nobody. I'm not talking about a lot of clothes."

In preparation for viewing the film The Eye Has to Travel, I checked out several books on (or by) Diana Vreeland. The more I examine the evidence, the more I see her as an immense genius, someone to bring on the 1960s as I knew them, right up there with the Beatles. And yes, I know what that means. It’s no exaggeration.

Men might not feel the same. But a girl who absorbed images of women from the 1950s could tell that something radically changed when DV took over Vogue.

There’s nothing I can really add to the conversation except what she means to me right now. Perhaps I was meant to read these works at this very moment, this particular harvest time.  She always operated with a half full glass, a formidable female past 50. Who else can teach such relentless optimism while entering the third act?

In one of her books, Jane Fonda described life as a play. The third act is when it all comes together, meaning roughly those last 30 years. Personally I am not in the third act yet, but I am contemplating it, I’m watching it in others. So much of what we know Vreeland for – the extraordinary years at Vogue and the development of the costume at the Met, that was all done in her 60s and beyond.

As an artist, you figure that such a career never ends. In theory, you just keep getting better. But fashion? Not so likely. Yet Vreeland kept raising the bar.

In the past few years I witnessed a lot of darkness and wanted to instinctively kick it out with no mercy, yet still entertaining some perverse guilt. Ms. Vreeland sets an example, a way to move on. She didn't complain. She hated negativity. She was never stuck in the past. Everything was fabulous. Sure, she had money and resources. But she had a gift, a frame of mind, to live and embrace what was right in front of her.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Short Break

Art Focus will take a short break over the next two weeks. Stage and Studio will produce one hour specials during that time. I will actually still be at KBOO, working behind the scenes for pledge drive. I will return on October 23rd with a show on Nationale.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

MK Guth on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

MK Guth will be my guest on Art Focus this coming Tuesday, October 2, 2012. She has two shows going up this month. At the Marylhurst Art Gym is when nothing else subsists, smell and taste remain. That show opens October 7th.

Then at the Elizabeth Leach Gallery the artist opens Best Wishes on First Thursday in October (see image above.)

Friday, September 28, 2012

Anonymous Women at Some Walls

This month Some Walls opens a show of my Anonymous Women in Oakland, California. The Women haven't really had a show of their own, so I'm excited.

Some Walls is a curatorial and writing art project by artist Chris Ashley. I am joining illustrious company - Mira Schor, Ken Weathersby and Lorna Mills are a few of the artists who have shown there. In the coming month I will post more images and links.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Dan Gluibizzi and Zefrey Throwell on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

On September 26th, Ampersand Gallery and Fine Books will present There is no finish line by Dan Gluibizzi and Zefrey Throwell, a show which riffs off web-based imagery with an erotic spin. The two artists will be my guest this coming Tuesday (the 25th) on Art Focus. It all promises to be a great exhibition and radio show. An exhibition similar in scope was produced by the artists at By and By Gallery in Brooklyn in 2010 called I'll Tumblr 4 Ya.

The exhibition coincides with the publication by Ampersand of Folding Space/Pressing Time, a limited edition book. Similar to the show stylistically, the book is a stand-alone conceptual exploration in which Gluibizzi vibrantly distorts Tumblr Archive grids & Throwell gives photographic form to the erotic chaos that plagues his recurring dreams of time travel. Signed copies of this book will be available at the gallery.

Zefrey Throwell in particular is known for his August, 2011 performance piece Occularpation: Wall Street, in which he & 50 performers appeared nude on Wall Street in New York & enacted actual Wall Street occupations, but both of these artists are on fire.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Storm Tharp on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

Storm Tharp will be my guest on Art Focus this next Tuesday. His Holding a Peach is at PDX Contemporary Art for the month of September. The show incorporates painting, sculpture, fabric design and much more. (Please note: all audio files are now immediately uploaded on the homepage for Art Focus.)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Kristan Kennedy on KBOO

Van Brummelen & De Haan: Monument to Another Man's Fatherland

This week Portland is dominated by PICA's TBA Festival. End Things is the visual art component, mostly housed at The Works at Washington High School. Curator Kristan Kennedy will be my guest on Art Focus this week. (More information on the above video still here.)

Monday, September 3, 2012


September is generally an exciting time for art. TBA from PICA might be enough, but this month some of my favorite people and favorite artists (nice when they're the same but it doesn't have to be) are showing.

Storm Tharp will present Holding a Peach at PDX Contemporary Art. It looks like Tharp has united many of his interests into these images. There's a lot one could say but I will let the artist speak for himself - he'll be my guest on KBOO on the 18th of this month.

Anna Fidler will show Vampires and Wolf Men at Charles A. Hartman Fine Art. Fidler uses images from The Oregon Historical Society, giving our history a new dimension.

Mary Josephson shows paintings, embroidery and mosaic at the Laura Russo Gallery. The piece above is called Pink Lady.

Elise Wagner lives here in Portland and shows all over the country. This month we get to see her work Event Horizons at Butters.

My pal Katherine Ace will show her fab still lifes, which are collages, not just paint. I don't think anyone is doing it quite like she does. The show, Fleeting Vista, is at Froelick.

Another great friend Maria T.D. Inocencio will be a part of the Nine Gallery's 25th anniversary exhibition. Above you see a detail of Each Bloom Lives for Just One Day. They have a catalog for this show, all of which you can view here.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Namita Wiggers, Julie Mancini and Ellen Wishnetzky on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

All three of my guests for Art Focus this coming Tuesday, September 4th, have something to do with exhibitions at PNCA Museum of Contemporary Craft. At present the MCC co-hosts Design with the Other 90%: Cities, which is also at the gallery at Mercy Corps. This show was curated by Cynthia E. Smith of the Cooper Hewitt National Museum of Design. MCC Director Namita Wiggers and Mercy Corps Action Center Julie Mancini will be my guests.

Also, Ellen Wishnetzky, who is presenting Felt to Steel at the MCC Gallery, will join us. She is a metal and fiber sculpture artist I had the pleasure of meeting in Ashland when I was down there for my painting show at the Schneider Museum of Art.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Lorena Guillen Vaschetti and Norma Vaschetti on KBOO

Listen to the interview here.

On August 28TH Art Focus will cover a show opening at Ampersand - an exhibition of photographs by Lorena Guillen Vaschetti & paintings by her mother, Norma Vaschetti, both of whom live & work in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Lorena's recent body of work, Historia, memoria y silencios, investigates what truths from our past are revealed or hidden within photographic documents, in this case a series of family slides that were all but lost in 2009. Released as a lovely first monograph in early 2012, Historia, memoria y silencios was chosen as one of the best photobooks of the year by PDN & Photo EspaƱa 2012.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Wild Studio

Just the idea of "The Studio" is sort of Romantic. Where it is, what it looks like, who gets to visit. When I had one in NW Portland, a small and separate room, I would write about "Life in the Studio," as if miracles and deep thoughts happened there.

But truth is - it was kind of tough. I felt the pressure as soon as I entered the room, as much as I idealized it. It was only after I turned my studio into Lovelake that it began to feel more right. A decade later, I have a much different idea about work and where and how it happens.

At present I work in a big house on the river. The studio is where the living room ought to be. But this is what real living feels like to me and what a real studio is too. I live with the work and the work is my living. It's also the meal, the wine, the various concoctions. There's just me, it, the dog and it's all one. There is no "Life in the Studio" because it is already everything, everywhere, not separate in any way. A united blur. You could say I have no real studio or that the studio is everywhere. The latter is the truth. I treasure the openness of the space, the erased edges. One great big room to make (relatively) small collages.

In many ways there could not be a better time to read Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I am on my own, gone, ripped out, off and yet working on something very important. If you were to have told me a couple of years ago that I would be here, exactly here, I would have maybe scoffed, maybe swooned, maybe shuddered or all three. The threshold, looking back and forward at the same time. It feels raw though maybe that's not the right word. It's good to feel the things. It's good to make the things.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Chris Bennett and Tricia Hoffman on KBOO

(Photo by Ray Bidegain, who is currently showing at Newspace)

Listen to the interview here.

Newspace is a center for photography in SE Portland. They've got a lot to talk about - a new gallery and entrance, complete with a 2ND digital lab just for scanning and printing, all manner of classes, critiques, summer camps, facilities and great exhibitions. They also have a new Director, Tricia Hoffman. She will join me on Art Focus, along with Executive Director Chris Bennett this next Tuesday, the 21ST.