Sunday, September 23, 2012

My Favorite Women in Art

If there is one artist I admire most, it is Henri Matisse. An on going project for me has been creating imagery based off of his painting "Italian Woman". In a recent reduction print (center), I combined part of Matisse's image with a section taken from "the bathers" by William Adolph Bouguereau, another painting that I love from the Art Institute. By finding the area of concentration in the painting, and enlarging it, I create new compositions based on the original female form. To the left is a small acrylic painting on wood based on the Italian Woman. To the right is a sketch in colored pencil, graphite, and pen based on the Bathers. Here are the original images.

the Italian Woman, Matisse

the Bathers, Bougeureau

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Grin And Bear It

Here's more on a previously posted work!
In a quest to bring texture into my works, I decided to actually physically layer cloth onto the canvas. I wanted to create something so real and so juicy that you had to resist the urge to touch it. Though this piece is only 12 by 12 inches, I can just imagine this as a massive wall-covering piece, so overwhelming that all you can do is sit and look. For me, it captures the feeling of living with resentment, and holding in this feeling so long that it destroys you from the inside out.
The idea for the piece first came to me when I decided to sit down and illustrate various scenes from fountainhead. Out of that sprang an idea for a cartoon, in which these little leach-like "second handers" were destroyed by their own actions. These characters kept on "swimming with the crowd" despite feeling as if they are going against their conscious, and were ultimately punished for it.

Here is a doodle I did of the original characters fooling around.

This doodle from a while a go inspired by what would be the character of the hero-personality, those akin to Howard Roark, or according to Ayn Rand, Objectivists.

Here is a small self portrait I did based off of a photo taken of me. Here, the background is abstracted and my image is blurred to make me resemble my objectivist characters.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

first few works of the semester

Oil on stretched black paper with pumice ground. 10 x 10 inches

I started working on this type of imagery after reading the fountainhead by Ayn Rand. Rand was inspired by architects like Frank Lloyd wright, who created designs to fit the human lifestyle while at the same time growing out of their environment as if they were always meant to be there. The hero of the story spends his whole life fig
hting ideas of traditional or fashionable architecture. The novel calls for an end to relying on our ancestors and ideas of the past, and instead attempts to inspire us to believe in our own individual ideas and pursue our own interests.

Here I sought to reveal the cold and emptiness of these architectural motifs and their hidden brittle nature - we can break through the old walls and build our own.

Oil on canvas with pumice ground, 10 x 10 inches

This piece may look like a small slab of concrete, but it is light as a feather and hangs on the wall by a single nail. In my multi level painting class we are working on small canvases with different materials and grounds and creating different textural effects. After working with these for a little while now, I am inspired to create a series of gray paintings.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Summer Plans

Taking a watercolor class last semester really gave me a new appreciation for it. Since I am back in Brooklyn for a little while, I took my supplies with me to make some more portable works of art. Working small helps me get ideas sorted out, and zero in on what I should focus on as a larger project or series. These are just a few of the ones I have done so far. Hope to post more soon!

Monday, May 14, 2012

WAVEFORMS May 11th, Spring 2012

My sound sculpture which I have previously mentioned on the blog was shown at this event, mainly playing before and after the set of pre-recorded works and live performances. Shown is also my boyfriend Christopher holding his hand-made instrument as well as other items made by people in his instrument-making class which were all played together as a group called "Do Dad Eco Zen".
Me and Chris dragged our roommate along, and it was quite a good night. Each person there received a copy of the works shown on CD.
I was surprised and very pleased at the big turn-up! Afterwards people hung around to talk and my piece was able to get a bit more face-time with attendees. Very different from the show last December, which was short and sweet, and much smaller.

Crazy About This Guy

Jacob Lawrence, Through Forests, Through Rivers, Up Mountains.

I recently did my final paper for African American Art History on this piece. The subject is Harriet Tubman and the underground railroad. The canvas is loaded with so much information, symbols, and artistic devices, and so I was drawn to it as an excellent work of art to write about.

My initial attraction to Jacob Lawrence came from the similarity in style that I have to him. Researching his work caused me to realize just how much I am drawn to his imagery. I chose one piece so that I could more closely examine one aspect of his work - story telling. However, there is much more about him that I admire.

Above are "Marionettes" and a piece from Lawrence's Hiroshima series. These both relate more closely to my own interests in terms of his color use, line work, and compositional aesthetic.

Friday, May 4, 2012

SAIC Blogs » Waveforms: Friday, May 11 – Elastic Arts « Inside Sound

SAIC Blogs » Waveforms: Friday, May 11 – Elastic Arts « Inside Sound

Come and support if you are in the chicago area! Should be a great night of SAIC student-made sound art performance! Also my first show, so kind of a big deal!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Side projects

Canvas and Oil applied to Wood Panel. This one I am looking to add more to soon. Also will probably sand down to a more rectangular shape, since the panel did not come in a very squared-off shape.

Part one in a diptych idea entitled "Sisters I and II". Oil on Canvas, 12x12 In.

"Grin and Bear it". Oil on Un-stretched Canvas layered over Pre-Stretched 12x12 In. Canvas.

Even though I am not taking a painting class this semester, I have somehow found time between my 18 credit hours to work on several side projects. These Ideas are not fully fleshed out, and done on a much smaller scale than I would like the end result to be. They are sort of test-subjects if you will.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

My Inspiration

Abstract Expressionism
Art Deco
Marcel Duchamp
Jean-Michel Basquiat
William A Bouguereau
Byzantine art
Maurizio Cattelan (All)
German Expressionists
Kahleel Gibran (Jesus, The Son of Man)
the Human Body
Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Carl Jung (Robert Johnson - Dream Interpretation)
Frida Kahlo
K pop
Jacob Lawrence
Rene Magritte
Marilyn Manson (The Long Hard Road Out of Hell)
Henri Matisse
Piet Mondrian
Paolo and Francesca
Rain (and lousy weather in general)
Ayn Rand (Anthem, The Fountainhead)
The Renaissance
Gerhard Richter
Strangers in Paradise (Graphic novel Series)
Henry Ossawa Tanner
To My Excellent Lucasia, Katherine Phillips (Poem)
George Frederic Watts

*I will probably go back and edit / add over time

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Where I'm At: New Stuff in Water Color

Though these etchings are from last semester, we recently did an assignment in my watercolor class in which we used an original printed image and water-colored over it. I had been wanting to do it for a while, so this was a great opportunity to kill two birds with one stone. At first it felt weird seeing the images in color, but after a week of them being dry, finished products, I am really liking the end result.
The assignment for next week is a diptych, as we start to think about the subject for a series of images to work on. Shown in order are my attempts at the assignment. Though we only need one, the first one didn't feel satisfying as a two-part image. I may end up just cutting it in half. After worrying about imagery and color and even techniques I want to work with, I took a deep breath, listened to some music, and the next one just sort of flowed out of me subconsciously.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

LVL3: Three Vertices

LVL3 is celebrating their two year anniversary with this show, with five artists, featuring works with one superficial theme: They contain triangles. The show strived to reveal the meaning behind the use of this geometric shape, but most of the works very loosely fit this theme. That was one pleasant surprise for me, having expected fields of tessellated rainbow triangles, or prisms floating in outer space. Unfortunately, just because this was not your average triangle art, doesn't mean it had any other unique flare to it.
There was, however, one artist who stood out among all the others. This was the work of Alex Ebstein, who's structures of wood, paper, and yarn I found quite enchanting. They were well thought out compositionally, and looked like solid, sturdy objects put together in an efficient, professional manner.
The LVL3 space is a large open room on the 3rd floor of a building. I found it a great place to visit, and will probably come back soon to check out their new artist book shop. The Three vertices show will be up until March 25th, and I encourage you to come check it out for yourself. Check out the links above!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Pam Lins - New York Studio and Chicago Gallery

Pam Lins' studio is located in a large building in Williamsburg with a vintage store on the bottom floor. Winding through narrow rooms created by stacks of materials, we are brought to a room in the back with three of her most recent sculptures. Each one appeared to be made with plaster strips, pencils, and string, among other things. Each of the sculptures rested atop wooden podiums built by hand. She explained that the color choice of the top part of each of the podiums came from automobile colors - ones designed to get the customer to buy the car.

Pam mentioned the lack of role models - people to look up to in the field of sculpture - and that one of her few influences was of coarse Brancusi - which I had gotten a feel for from her attention to the podium as part of the sculpture itself. Though for the most part her aesthetic decisions puzzled me, I admired her process. I have great respect for sculptors as it is, since I myself seem to lack their feel for materials.

When I went to the Suburban, a space in located Oak Park, There were a few artists on display in different rooms. I was surprised to find that in Pam Lins' room, there were wall pieces in place of one of her sculptures. These seemed to serve as studies - observations of the role of a sculpture when constructed into different forms. On top of serving this purpose, I found the treatment of materials and subtle, smudged color very attractive within these works on Paper and wood panel.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Studio Visit: Heather Guertin

Heather Guertin’s studio is a relatively small part of a large, developing building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Though the space was small, all 20-some-odd of us managed to come in, take a look at her paintings, and then sit down. After a bit of introduction, we were able to get a taste of a new career she is pursuing – stand-up comedy. Though a little slow in the set up, Heather eventually reeled us in with her satire on painting culture, and a short excerpt from a novella written by her that, I have to say, was quite amusing.

Using actual paintings of hers in the act led some people to question whether this discounted value in her painting – bringing the paintings from art-objects to stage props. At the time I welcomed the interpretation of her art, even if meant to be humorous. Looking back on it, bringing our attention to these paintings during a performance Gave them, and all of her other paintings the context of her comedy interest and really, any topics that she may be interested in as a comedian. Considering their subject matter was abstraction, I was grateful for this hint and appreciated them more as artworks because of it.

Aside from showing us her work, she talked a lot about how she acquired things necessary for her career, such as the studio space, and her current job as an artist’s assistant. Having the chance to meet her and hear what she had to say was a great learning experience on our trip. It made me think about the possibilities that exist after art school in order to advance myself in my interests.

Here is a clip of the same routine she shared with us:

Chelsea Gallery: Marianne Boesky

Let loose for the day to explore the galleries of Chelsea, I made sure I went to as many as I could stand before my feet started yelling at me. Before I made a B-line for the train, I told myself “Just one more!” and that is how I happened upon the Marianne Boesky gallery, which was showing works by Melissa Gordon.

On my way into the inner room, I stumbled upon one piece in particular that immediately spoke to me. It was as if the artist had taken an etching of mine and brought it into the three dimensional realm. This piece consisted of a print stretched on canvas, accompanied by two colored shapes being held up on skinny black poles at different distances in front of the print.

When I finally decided that, maybe I should see what the next room contains, I found several different groups of people circling the room together. One was an old Asian couple. Another was a mom pushing a stroller. I stood in the doorway for a minute just to observe these people’s reactions.

I have to admit that not all of her pieces struck me in the same manner, but they certainly seemed to delight the crowd, weaving around her geometric forms until they finally meet the canvas face to face, nodding and pointing at what they noticed. Realizing the time, I hastily took some photos with my not-so-great camera, and went on home. Later I realized we would be going to that same gallery as a group, and got very excited for my seemingly ahead-of-the-curve experience.

When we finally did meet back there as a group, I learned that we would in fact be inquiring a different artist. I was a little miffed I would not get to meet the likes of Melissa Gordon, but I put those thoughts aside and, with a curious eye, began to explore the work of Anthony Pearson.

Anthony’s works harmoniously resided together in a room off to the side of the gallery, which I hadn’t even noticed before. Amidst these pieces was one that was not his: a work by an Arte Povera artist, which was composed of a large sheet of metal behind a panel of glass. This piece worked very well hung up with the rest, but its place there still puzzled me, considering the history of Arte Povera and what we later learned about Anthony’s work. Not to mention the sheer fact that you don’t normally see a set up like this. Did his gallery curator just not want to leave the wall blank? I admired Anthony for his honesty; in telling us his work was primarily for selfish reasons. But all through the talk, the presence of this slightly more impressive object of immateriality haunted me.

There were however, some curious similarities between his work and the Arte Povera piece. For his photographs, Anthony used reflective glass in the frames, a common technique I have noticed in Arte Povera that causes the viewer to not be able to escape becoming a part of the work. Other themes in his work seemed strikingly opposite of Arte Povera: the luxury of photography, the complexity in the making of his sculptures, and the general amount of resources available to him to be able to make his art.

Despite my mixed feelings on the presentation of his art, Anthony Pearson had a lot to share with us about going about being an artist, and staying true to your motives for making art. For him, his art is about constantly making and improving, with the eventual goal of just being a good, successful artist. We all have our motives for doing what we enjoy doing, and if we happen to make money from doing it, that’s just luck.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A New York City Experience: Improvised Shakespeare

Theatre 80 on St Marks Place

On Friday, January 6th , my sister invited me to come see improvised shakespeare with her friends. The improvised Shakespeare group coincidentally is based in Chicago, but they come to New York for a season each year to do their show. At the beginning of a show they ask the audience to pick the title of the play, and then the entire one act play is made up on the spot then and there, never to be repeated ever again. Why is this called improvised shakespeare you ask? Because the entire play is spoken in iambic pentameter, and in old english! They also frame the show the way shakespeare would, in terms of characters and their relationships, and the drama that ensues.

The play that I had the pleasure of watching that night was entitled “My Taco is Your Taco”. The British and the Spanish were looking to become allies by wedding the King of England’s daughter to prince of Spain, but the princess was in love with another man and ran away. Meanwhile the King of England’s brother consipired to make himself king, and start a war with the Spanish. In the end, the English Princess and the Spanish Prince fell in love, and the evil brother’s plan was foiled. Needless to say it was quite entertaining, and I nearly split my sides laughing. I look forward to hunting them down in Chicago to experience it again!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

More on Maurizio Cattelan!

This was a show with many twists and turns – works that were whimsical, satirical, scary, and intellectual all packed together. Each climbing step up the Guggenheim’s spiral led to another view, and with it a new discovery, and a new thought. This was a show best viewed from the sidelines, especially if you happen to have a fear of large objects falling on your head. I was surprised that the crowds of people down below me didn’t seem to mind.

Maurizio Cattelan is a man who has worked in many trades in his lifetime, and has held many interests. This part of him is evident in the variety of subject matter as well as the craftsmanship put into each piece. The greatest feat of all is the organization of this collection of work, and its secure placement into the center of the museum.

One thing that I became a bit miffed by was the fact that a good portion of his works were untitled. I would pick out a piece of interest, look it up on the show’s Diagram, only to find a very minimal description of it. Because I was so fascinated by the show, I decided to purchase the book of the same title in order to find out more about the artist himself as well as the work. However, I find that because there is very little effort put into the show in terms of having the audience really understand the work, it is as if there is this sort of intentional distance created. Because no title is assigned to the work, the art simply becomes about its physical appearance, and ultimately comes to represent nothing other than itself. If a great amount of work has been put into creating a functional miniature elevator or a cartoon-like life-size sculpture of a person, my thought is that there should be an obvious amount of intention behind making the work, which has certainly been misrepresented in this show.

Because it seems that whether or not the pieces had significance, the people walking around the Guggenheim that day did not seem to mind, I am content to say that in Maurizio’s case, keeping information from the viewer is not necessarily a bad thing.

NYC study trip

I am currently in the middle of a study trip through my school, where we have been visiting Museums, Studios, and Galleries all over the city, and even the midtown office of Art Forum magazine. This trip is giving us a great perspective on what's out there in terms of resources for artists, and how artists who work with different mediums might go about getting themselves known.
As well as being a great chance to meet people and see new things, it has really gotten me inspired to make art and set goals for myself.

Here are some photos of the trip so far!
(Please excuse the fact that I haven't done a post with a lot of images in a while so I forgot to compensate for the fact that blogger uploads the images in backwards order - to lazy to re-do it at this point)

I found this very similar to my own work! This work and others like it by Melissa Gordon are currently on display at the Marianne Boesky gallery in chelsea!

Very arte-povre-esque! Sculpture by up - and coming artist Ned Colclough, on display at his first solo show at Nicelle Beauchene Gallery in China town.

Cute church in midtown!

Maurizio Cattelan, All, at the Guggenheim! Just ordered the book of the same title and I CAN NOT WAIT.

View from Church ave and e 17th st at 7 in the morning, first day of class.