Monday, May 31, 2010

Latex Essays for the Big Draw Event

A week or so ago, I mentioned the work I planned to submit for the Beacon Open Studios Big Draw Event (note the new BOS website.) Well, last weekend I made up these little latex paint sketches and these are the pieces I ended up submitting. They're all 6"x8" and are pieces of dried, cast latex paint (a couple with collaged paper)mounted on Masonite. Remember, The Big Draw is happening on June 5, 7-10pm.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


rocker 2010, oil, marker on white board.

Isaac Chotiner, in his review of Bill Simmons' The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy in the Atlantic, (The Enthusiast, Apr 2010) succinctly nailed the distinction between Jay Leno and David Letterman at late night hosts:
You rarely get the sense that Letterman’s show revolves around jokes that he himself finds boring and lowbrow. (The opposite is true of Jay Leno, a comedian canny enough to understand his audience.)

Never has an analysis for why Letterman is entertaining, (even when he's not funny) and why Leno simply sucks been so clearly distilled for me.  (Of course, the conclusion of relative coolness vs suckiness drawn from the above quote is mine own.) Essentially, Leno's style is one of pandering to his audience, Letterman's is of satisfying his own sense of humor.  This distinction between the Letterman and Leno characters is germane to the practice activity of an artist where the potential timelessness of a work rests on the genuineness of the maker's original intent and the motivation that underlies the work.
Its the difference between looking at a work that is a genuine expression of an creative intention and execution, and looking at something that is at great pains to look like an artwork, complete with all the appropriate signifiers - or transgressions.  When striking out in new directions, walking the line between these distinctions is what studio work is about; acting, reviewing and responding in the quest to attain something that, if it doesn't feel natural and comfortable, at least doesn't feel phony or contrived, and it may just be freakishly exciting. Then there are the moments (if you're like me) fraught with the reheated worrying if whether that which you are thinking is not contrived is actually contrived and phony after all, and you can't really tell the difference.  But maybe that is just me.

I spent several months after the end of my college Sophomore year in Geneva, CH.  Most of the time, I wandered the streets, inhabited the art library, drew, and  I questioned myself regarding whether I should return to school or not.  I was doing well in school, but I began tripping on whether the success I had in my studio classes rose from my technical and creative ability, or if it was due to fulfilling the expectations of my professors.  I couldn't resolve that uncertainty and it contributed to my not going back. This memory just came to mind.  There's a touch of that same unknowing-ness that informs and drives some of my impulses in the studio.  There were times when I considered being a Leno.  I didn't get far.  I simply couldn't stand myself in that long enough to go through those motions. 
In any case, the D.I.Y sensibility has long governed my drive to make and do.  But the Letterman/Leno distinction has made me recommitt myself to the D.I.F.Y. mantra: Do It For Yourself.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Friends with Benefits

Blood and my impulse to make work are the two "commodities" that I've had in abundance throughout my life, and that being the case, these two attributes (along my compulsive need to please) are what I have always been most able to leverage in the interest charitable giving. 

I generally participate in one or two art auctions or events each year where I donate an existing artwork.
I've mentioned before, my commitment to the biennial Artma event in Denver - and of course, I pierce a vein whenever I'm able (which I'll be doing again later this week.)
I recently set up a page here on the blog dedicated to the sale of Depletion Drawings which can be purchased through Paypal and will in part benefit Habitat for Artists.  Those drawings embody a vein of concentration that I was able to tap in to while meditating in my isolated 6x6 space.  That was a wonderful opportunity to step in deeper by stepping outside of the norm.  (I appreciate the images and reflections Sharon Butler has shared about her time spent in her Beacon Habitat during the same period, which I gather was equally beneficial to her.)
Anyway, these drawings are meaningful to me as many of them crystallized elements that I've since been exploring more fully, and I think they're rather successful as drawings.  So here's your chance to lay claim to a bit of my working process, while at the same time supporting two interesting causes:  HFA and Me.

  Depletion Drawing 26, 2008

There are a couple fundraising benefits coming up in which I'm participating, and in which one could find some great small pieces created by a variety of artists, all at a very easy sum of dough:

rococollage, 6x6" oil on canvas with printed paper collage.

The Rochester Contemporary Art Center in Rochester, NY is hosting its fourth (I think) 6x6x20 benefit starting on June 5, 2010. Thousands of 6"x6" artworks are available to purchase for $20. Works will be available to purchase online through RoCo's website beginning on June 7 at 10 am. 

On June 5, here in Beacon, the Beacon Open Studios Big Draw event will be taking place at the Marion Royeal Gallery at 462 Main St to raise funds for the city wide open studio weekend in September.
 smoken words, 6x8" marker and oil on white board.

I'll be submitting a couple of selections from a recent group of white board drawings, a few of which are pictured here.  I don't know which ones I'll actually submit for the event, and if I do submit any of the ones pictured, I don't know that they'll look the same by that point.

THENTHAN, 6x8" marker on white board.

some trees 6x8" marker, collage on white board

Friday, May 14, 2010

Calendar Gals

For those folks who eagerly followed the progress of the kork advent project this past December, here's your chance to relive just a bit of that time through the current goings on of a few of the participating artists: 

Itziar Barrio (ms. december 18th) is opening her studio down in the LES as part of the annual AAI Open Studios at 107 Suffolk St in NYC's lovely Lower East Side. The open studios are taking place on May 15 4-8pm.

Next, Alisha Kerlin (ms. december 15th) was named last week as one of the artists participating in the Greater New York show at PS1, opening on May 23.  But before that show, Alisha has an exhibit called Cat and Mouse opening at Real Fine Arts in Brooklyn on May 22.  The opening reception is happening that evening from 7-10pm and the exhibit is running through June 27.

In order to keep the premise of this post from getting way too sexist I'm throwing in a couple morsels of masculinity from the advent calendar.
Rob Lomblad (ms. december 22nd) is currently lording over the domain of the kork board with his drawing project through the end of June.

Gregory Marvin Reynolds (ms. december 11th) has nothing going on....except pleasuring your optical nerves on a nearly daily basis with his blog the truth that should be.

Finally, Karlos Carcamo (ms. december 14th) is featured in the Editions '10 catalogue and exhibit produced by the Lower East Side Print Shop.  The opening reception is being held on May 26, 6-8pm at 306 W 37th St, 6 fl.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Upcoming artist calls in Beacon:

First, The Big Draw: a fundraising drawing extravaganza for the Beacon Open Studios 2010.  The Big Draw will be a drawing marathon, party and live auction.  A handful of exquisite corpse drawings created by notable Beaconites will be auctioned off and a broad wide selection of 6"x8" 2D works will be available for $40 each.  Artists will be on hand drawing throughout the evening.
Deadline for submitting 6"x8" works for thee event is May 23.  Artists whose 6x8's are sold will  receive 50% ($20) of the purchase price.
Artists will also be on hand creating drawings throughout the evening.  If you are interested in drawing during the event, or submitting a piece, check out the submission info and form  
This event is not restricted to Beacon artists.  Anyone from anywhere are invited to submit work.

Remember, Beacon Open Studios is taking place on Sept. 25 and 26.  Artists interested in participating can sign up for the low low price of $20 until June 5th at which point the fee will rise.
I can tell you that both members of the maykr household will be participating this year...since one of us will have just finished her MFA, and last year's installment was so successful.

Next, Windows on Main St is coming back for its sixth year.

Deadline for project proposal submissions is July 1.  As I understand it Ty Marshal has handed over his share of the reigns to Katy Peace, but  Melissa Tatge is still involved in the inner workings.  The exhibit will be taking place from August 14 to September 11.

Friday, May 07, 2010

Gallery talk at the Beacon Institute, Apr 8, 2010, 4pm

I'll be moderating a talk with artists Erica Hauser and Ian Wickstead tomorrow at 4pm at the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries.  The talk is part of a series accompanying the exhibit curated by Linda Stewart, Water, Water, Everywhere
The Beacon Institute is located at 199 Main St in Beacon.
The next Creative Process Dialogue is scheduled for Sept 18 featuring Peter Brauch & Shawn Snow and will be moderated by Carl Van Brunt.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

As the kork turns....

There are yet a few moments left this weekend to engage in a bit of remote viewing of Matthew Hereford's kork project, Highland Path, while it is still on the wall in Poughkeepsie. 

Up next on kork:   Unfolding the mind of Robert Lomblad.