I visited LIC Open Studios at the end of last month and saw a significant amount of work that really resonated with me aesthetically. Some highlights:
Alexis Duque (website)
I’m of course a fan of the super dense city drawing style; I was also really intrigued by the way he translated it onto carved sculptural works as well. I’m definitely considering trying out something like that.
Kathy Ferguson (website)
I’ve seen her work at previous open studios; this year she was demonstrating gel plate printing, which she uses to get the different textures that she collages together onto her works.
Kyoko Takei (website)
I’ve also seen her work before but it continues to be fascinating; it’s so delicate and intriguing.
Marjorie Van Cura
Very interesting markmaking on clear film–another project I’ve been hoping to try…
Overall it was a particularly inspiring event, and I’m looking forward to working on some new projects out of these ideas!
Some highlights from the recent Governors Island Art Fair in New York:
I’m a huge fan of works that take advantage of the architectural setting. The installations are all in decaying governors’ quarters on the island, and the best ones really meld with and play off of their surroundings.
There’s some beautiful outdoor installations as well:
And the beautiful day and gorgeous views definitely don’t detract :)
First we saw a map/diagram art show at the Center for Book Arts in New York:
Inge Bruggeman, the infinite between us, 2011
This piece was incredible; it was a music box whose tape feed was a chart of weather data; when you fed a tape through the box, it mechanically “played” the weather.
Sarah Bouchard, Weather Box, 2014
It was very simple and conceptually fascinating. I’d love to make something like that at some point.
We also went to the Brooklyn Art Library, home to the Sketchbook Project archives. I requested a mappy sketchbook through their system—and randomly received the sketchbook of Clint Fulkerson (who I’ve followed on Instagram for a while) as well! That system is lovely.
Saw some of my favorite street art too—the huge fish/city mural inside Jackbar in Williamsburg.
And I couldn’t miss communing with de Chirico at MoMA. I’ve been inspired by that kind of uncanny-valley dreamlike Surrealist architecture for a while. I think it’s not unrelated to the feeling of seeing a map that could be real but isn’t…
Some artwork and installations that have been inspiring me:
Industry Lab art installation
Barbara Moody installation at Kingston Gallery in SoWa
Arthur Ganson at the MIT Museum
I’ve also done a bit of museuming recently—I went to the Art Institute twice when we were in Chicago and visited the Museum of Art and Design in New York. Here’s some pieces I saw that inspired me:
Giovanni di Paolo. I like the super geometric fields and the flat perspective. I wasn’t expecting to be inspired by 15th century religious paintings but this little corner was interesting.
Robert Delaunay at the Art Institute. I think I take a photo of this piece (“Champs du Mars”) every time I go.
Frank Lloyd Wright at the Art Institute
Charles Sheeler at the Art Institute
Miriam Ellner at the Museum of Arts and Design. The screen had this magic thing where although it was totally opaque, because some parts were mirrored it looked deceptively like it was semi-translucent. We spent a while in that room and I couldn’t stop thinking I could see through it.
The other week I braved the weather and headed out to First Friday for the first time in a while. I got there really early, which ended up being great—the event can get pretty busy, even on a cold day in the middle of the winter, but I got to chat with artists individually. Some of the people I saw included:
– Nedret Andre, whose artist statement really resonated with me. I love how her paintings have both landscape and map aspects at the same time. She was also friendly and had some really heartening things to say when I described my current responsibilities with Somerville Open Studios.
– I was shocked to experience being the only person in the Totally Wired Sculpture studio—that’s definitely never happened to me before. The artist Brian Murphy was offering some small heart-shaped sculptures to visitors for Valentine’s day, but I didn’t have the heart (haha) to just take one. I’m sure they all went by the end of the evening though.
– One of my favorite new art experiences that trip was at Galatea, which was showing Brenda van der Beek “Terrain of the Mind“. The title alone would attract me, but her drawings spoke on their own; it was very interesting that they were architectural but at the same time organic and freeform.
– I always like to check in with Marian Dioguardi, and her brightly colored studio was particularly engaging on a cold February evening!
The other gallery shows were also interesting, particularly Geoff Hargadon (“CA$H for YOUR WARHOL“) at Gallery Kayafas, although unfortunately I didn’t get to ask him in person about his Somerville Gates project.
It got cold, so we soon repaired to JJ Foley’s for some comfort food and the Olympics opening ceremonies. I’m definitely glad I braved the weather, and look forward to seeing more art this winter!
Some highlights from my visit last weekend:
Candice Oyer, “Cell Wall”
Susan Sills, “here we are”
Zoe McCarthy, “Subterranean Graffiti”
image from: http://www.artsicle.com/Zoe-Mccarthy
David Palmquist “Terminal Interchange Satellite 1”
Last weekend we spent a beautiful afternoon at the Distillery for South Boston Open Studios. It was my first visit to the space, and it appears to house artists working in an exceptionally wide variety of media. I was especially impressed with the number of artists who embraced drawing, since it’s my medium of choice but tends to be less represented in the art world.
Lisa Scollan used chemical traces on industrial metal as her starting point for intricate, mostly abstract drawings. Her studio was amazing; it looked like she was just compelled to draw, all the time, on everything.
I first met Adam O’Day at the last Boston Arts Festival where we were both showing artwork. I’ve also seen his designs at Ward Maps and on friends’ walls. I’m impressed by his facility with bright colors, and of course I love the cityscape theme.
Aimee Belanger had some great watercolor texture; I like the way this piece looks like a watercolor sampler, showcasing all the possibilities of the medium.
I actually profiled Chantal Hardy‘s work in an earlier post on SoWa artists after seeing it at an exhibition, but I didn’t realize she was at the Distillery until I was face-to-face with her work. I don’t often come across other artists who depict imaginary/invented places, and I like the way she mixes a representational style with abstract elements.
Pat Falco impressed us with his quirky poster series, including this clever one about missing cat posters. It’s so rare to see humor at art events.
It was great to meet Courtney Moy in person after seeing her work at Toscanini’s and following her blog for a bit. Her work is also refreshingly humorous; it mostly deals with food, and she pointed out to us a project on beer bottles, mentioning that she’s working towards 99 of them (wall-mounted, of course).
I saw Sarah Gay‘s drawings at the exhibition “threefam” at City Hall recently, and I love the expression she puts into her houses. This “uprooted” house in particular reminds me of a lot of popular imagery that I’ve also put into some of my non-observational representational drawings.
Walter Crump was the last artist I saw, and he really impressed me with his range of media and styles. I was, of course, initially drawn by the maplike paintings, but soon got entranced by the texture in a few prints. Apparently they were soft ground or collograph prints using steel wool and even plant roots to get an organic texture behind his fields of color.
The weekend before last we had a whirlwind Saturday in which I managed to attend two art receptions (in two different cities!), one comics expo, one pop-up porch concert, one startup planning meeting and one street fair celebrating the invention of marshmallow fluff (seriously, also not in that order). Oh, and all of this by bike. It was quite an achievement, and I have the massive bruises to show for it.
The Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo is an annual celebration of indie comics, graphic novels and zines that has been around since I moved to the area, but this was the first year that I made it over. I was actually surprised how most of the projects I saw were relatively similar (traditional graphic novel or manga style books with relatively humanoid characters, panels and text bubbles). I was hoping for some more alternative or zine-style projects that went outside the box. There was one table with a project that caught my eye — it was a compendium of artists who use comic media and poetry in their work, and there was a lot of creative storytelling and visuals. I also became enamored of the work of __ at that table as well. He draws really poetic, cropped vignettes and even explores some abstract drawing.
Aside from experiencing interesting indie comics, I was looking forward to finding at MICE some inspiration for my own book idea. I’d like to put together a book with my map drawings that takes quotes from