Posts Tagged ‘influences’

it’s show time!

One show just came down at the Gallery Project in Ann Arbor and one show just went up at Paint Creek Center for the Arts in Rochester (MI).  I am honored to have been/be a part of both of them.  Here are some photos of my work from Presence/Absence at PCCA (including some new work hot off the drawing table):

back right wall of gallery; all small pieces are propped up on scrabble tile trays mounted onto the wall

In Lights: oil on canvas with theater light and glass window blocks. Gobo projection reads Amelia Earhart's last words: We are running north and south.

Last Map drawings: gouache, ink, and gold leaf on blue paper

Object Lesson panels: gouache and gold leafing pen on birch panels

back left wall of gallery

Slides From the Trip- slideshow of stills from silent film project, a collaboration with Budapest-based artist Nannette Vinson

white drawings

Captured Island: gouache and ink on paper

Longitude: gouache and ink on paper

Navigation: gouache and ink on paper

Skullscape: gouache and ink on paper

Presence/Absence runs from January 15-February 20 with an opening reception at Paint Creek on Friday the 22nd from 7-9.  I am accompanied in the show by four amazing artists: Faina Lerman, Luzhen Qiu, Alison Wong, and Sun You. Here is a sweet blurb about the show in Real Detroit Weekly. Hope you can make it out to the opening!

new discoveries!

I sort of love buckthorn roots.  They are these insidious, craggly, deep black, evil looking beauties. I spray painted one gold and it hangs from the ceiling in my studio.  If I could get hold of a bunch of these, I would have a subterranean inverted forest sprouted from my ceiling.

So, naturally I was googling the term “buckthorn root” to see if I could purchase some on the internets.  In doing so, I serendipitously stumbled upon the work of a contemporary artist that I really like.  I promptly emailed Gregory Euclide and told him so.  Then lo and behold, his work appears on the sweet art blog My Love for You is a Stampede of Horses the very next day.  Here are some images of his work.

i flattened whatever pushing made the valley tremble, Acrylic, buckthorn root, cigrette butts, found foam, goldenrod, grass, lichen, Moss, mushroom, mylar, netting, paper, pencil, photo transfer, pine needle, polyurethane foam, sponge, sumac, wood 29 x 23 x 3

capture #12, acrylic, cedar tree, lichen, paint can, polyurethane foam, sponge, stone, wood

a new kind of quiet, warm in the air, bursting forth from the furrow, acrylic, paper, pencil, PETG, bees wax,wood 26 x 42 x 13

C’est belle, non?  This is the work of a visionary.

And then today Daily Serving serves up the work of Adam Friedman.  Downright gorgeous.  And I really like the whys and wherefores of his work, which you can read if you visit his site or the Daily Serving feature on his work.

"A Sky of Rock" 2009 Acrylic, Screen Print, Gel Transfers, and Collage on Panel 18"x14"

"No Vestige of a Beginning, No Prospect of and End" 2010 Screen Print, Acrylic, Gel Transfers, and Collage on Panel 16"x16"

"Oceans Before and Behind Us in Time" 2010 Acrylic, Screen Print, and Collage on Panel 18"x12"


new schtufz

Remember this post? Wherein I fawned over all things crystal and skull?  While I did not receive a Will Yackulic drawing in my stocking, I DID receive some lovelies of the crystal and skull variety from my favorite people (among scads of other wonderful giftses).  Here they be.

From my bro, a bottle of Crystal Head Vodka (the bottle is uber sweet!)

Crystal Head vodka

From ma mere, a sweet quartz crystal candle holder:


And from Mark, a ceramic skull with glazed teeth and a gold tooth!  I have been wanting this skull from Mudpuppy’s Etsy shop for a long time now.


Thanks to my amazing family for indulging my strange fascinations!

close to home

I moved around a lot as a kid and lived as far south as Georgia, where I was born, and as far north as Buffalo, NY, where we moved when I was six or seven.  After five moves, my family settled for the rest of my growing-up years in Rockford in northern Illinois.  As a disgustingly rebellious high-schooler facing college, I wanted to get as far away from home as possible.  I made it as far away as…Dayton Ohio (I know, I know).  I returned to the Rockford area to attend grad school at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb.  I applied to a bunch of schools all over the place, but that’s what ended up working best for me.

Throughout and since grad school, I have wanted to participate in the Rockford Art Museum‘s Biennial juried exhibition.  I saw one of them in grad school.  The space is amazing and the work was excellent that year.  Counting back that must have been either 2002 or 2004.  I applied once or twice since then and didn’t get in or the application date would inadvertently pass me by.  Well, this year, I both applied and got in: TWO major accomplishments!    I applied with some pretty big work, and was prepared to haul it out there if need be, but am grateful that I got a small piece in.  Here it is!

 All Thats Left, oil on panel, 11 x 14, 2008

All That's Left, oil on panel, 11" x 14", 2008

detail-- photo credit Susan Tusa from the Detroit Free Press

detail-- photo credit Susan Tusa from the Detroit Free Press

What a difference lighting can make-eh?  Can you tell which image was shot by a professional photographer?  I guess I gave it away.  If you happen to be in snowy Rockford Illinois on January 22nd, you can attend the opening.  I have an opening in Rochester Michigan that night; equally snowy, but much closer.  To see the dates and times the Rockford Midwestern Biennial will be open, visit RAM’s website.

Spring 2010 Collection at Gallery Project

Come on out to the opening on Friday if you can!  It should be a lot of fun!  Email or message me if you want a shirt to wear to the exhibition.  The info below is from Gallery Project’s website. Visit the site for hours and directions.  Hope to see you there!


Spring 2010 Collection

December 9 to January 11

Opening Reception: Friday, December 11, from 6-9pm.

Gallery Project presents the Spring 2010 Collection, a fashion exhibit showcasing artists as designers and social commentators. The annual fundraising exhibit opens at noon on Wednesday, December 9 and runs to 4pm on Sunday, January 11.  The reception is on Friday, December 11, from 6-9pm.

The 27 local, regional and national artists have created their own collection line or individual pieces specifically for the exhibition, and have made work that will be modeled on the catwalk show during the opening reception.  Artists explore the myriad influences and contexts of fashion, investigating issues such as identity and values, innovation and retrogression, trends and fads, materialism and consumption, high and low fashion, globalism and regionalism, thrift, reusing, recycling and reclaiming.

Artists and art collectives include basement6 (Jon Humphrey and Robin Coe), Jillian Brown, Betsy Brunner, Dorota Coy, Steve Coy, Bianca DePietro, Melissa Dettloff, Reed Esslinger, Jennifer Locke, Lana McKinnon, Modati (Bilal Ghalib, Sarms Jabra, Alexander Lee), Ryan Molloy, Barbara Neri, Amy Sacksteder, Gary Setzer, Bethany Shorb, Alexander Sobolev, Brooks Harris Stevens, Jim Stevens, Britten Stringwell, Jenn Stucker, Talking Squid (Taryn Boyd), Scott Tallenger and Andrew Thompson.

The exhibit is designed as a fun, interactive event.  Visitors are encouraged to come out in their finery to join the debutants, fashionistas, and designers.  A Catwalk Show starting at 7pm will highlight the opening reception.  Paparazzi will be flashing their cameras, with images available for purchase.  Visitors will be able to purchase Photo Passes so that they can photograph themselves, as they model garments and participate in interactive work.  Gallery goers are also invited to make DIY projects throughout the exhibition.

This exhibition is curated by artists Jennifer Locke, assistant professor of art at Eastern Michigan University, Steve Coy, art lecturer at The University of Michigan School of Art and Design, and Alexander Lee, a founding member of Modati, a local silk screening company.

Gallery Project is a fine art collaborative.  Its mission is to provide a venue for contemporary art that is culturally aware, individualistic, courageous, and thought provoking.  Gallery Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.  It is located at 215 South Fourth Avenue in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  Fall/Winter gallery hours: Tuesday through Thursday, noon-6; Friday and Saturday, noon-9; and Sunday, noon-4. The gallery is closed on Mondays.  For more information, please call 734-997-7012 or contact us through our website:


It’s a busy, busy week of show preparation in the ol’ studio.  The work for the next Gallery Project exhibition is due Sunday.  Yikes!  Details coming soon to their website.


Also, if you happen to find yourself in the Philly area, you can attend the reception for the 2010 Calendar: MUSEUMS, Krista Peel’s latest venture that features a piece from yours truly.  The calendar would make a great Christmas gift.  Check it out.


My calendar page.  Looks like I’m back to Ms. January!  I can’t believe I have been in these awesome calendars of KP’s since 2004!  What an honor!

I'm Ms. January once again!

of late

I have a show coming up at Gallery Project in Ann Arbor curated by three other artists, one of whom is my good friend and colleague at EMU, Jennifer Locke.  The show is called The Spring 2010 Collection (aka Fashion Show), and thus all of the work is about issues surrounding fashion, from a more cynical look at consumer culture, to a positive look at DIY and preloved movements.  The work in my series The Beautiful Ones, falls somewhere in between these two areas.  In 2007, I made a painting that had t-shirts that people could purchase and wear–something affordable to take away from the gallery-going experience–which was akin to being able to purchase band merch at a rock show.  In short, my painting could have groupies.  The goal was to allow people to be in a sort of performative dialog with the work.  The painting is “about” this sort of indie hipster culture, and also propagates it as well.  So, I had originally conceived of making two paintings and up until recently, just had the one.  This show was the perfect opportunity to realize the other.  They are both based on small drawings I did in France in 2007.  Below are some images of the piece in progress.  Progress continues.




where I'm at now

Here are two images of the t-shirt designs (printed by VGKids), one or both of which will be sewn into the surface of the painting.  They are printed on American Apparel Classic Girl and Standard American styles in the color natural and made from organic cotton.  I have sizes ranging from small to XL in both unisex and women’s shirts.  If you’re interested in a shirt, just email me with your size, style, and design preference.  They cost $15, but there’s a free shirt for anyone who is willing to come to the opening sporting the shirt and who stays for at least a half hour.  Let me know (by commenting on this post) if you want to participate, so that I can get you a shirt before the show.  I have already hired a bunch of my students, so it should be a lot of fun!

design 1

design 2

Here’s the info for the show.

What: The 2010 Collection (Fashion Show)

Where:  Gallery Project, 215 South Fourth Avenue, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104

When: Opening Friday December 11, 2009, 6-9 p.m. Show runs from Dec 9 – Jan 11.

Gallery hours are:

Fall/Winter hours:

Tue -Thu, noon-6

Fri -Saturday, noon-9

Sun, noon to 4

new art = new set-up

Mark and I were inspired by our friends Abigail and Stevens‘ decor, specifically, the way they display their art collection.  We even found out where they get their pieces framed and promptly followed suit.  The day I picked up the framed pieces, I was on my way out to pick up Mark for our date I wrote about in my last post.  When we got home, I got to show him all of the pieces all framed up.  Opening each one from it’s brown paper was a little bit like Christmas morning, and it prompted us to do our semiannual Purge and Rearrange of the house.  It definitely deserves to be capitalized.  Now this occurred on a Friday night.  Let’s just say that by the end of the evening Saturday, our entire living room had been rearranged to make way for the new art.  Also by the end of the weekend, we had dumped a van full of recycling and stuff off at their respective locations (Re-Use Ann Arbor for the furniture and household stuff)…and rearranged the entire living area in the basement.  Which included Mark’s music studio.  We felt like industrious squirrels getting all of the odds and ends in order for winter.  Whew!  I’m tired just writing about it!  Behold.

butterfly mosaic

Here’s one of the pieces that spurred the change.  All pieces framed in white are part of the art makeover.  This particular piece made the greatest transformation.  Formerly, it’s glass was old and dusty and it was in a thrift store frame.  Now this vintage butterfly mosaic is much happier. Here are a bunch of images of the new living room set-up with art in place.  We’re fixin’ to paint the walls gray and the trim white.  What do you think?


living room


Here’s the Mike McFalls sculpture installed in its new home in the dining room.  For the the time being, this is where it lives.

dining room

So in short, buy or trade for some new art.  Or invest in some frames for your art.  Your collection needn’t be extensive or expensive to spruce up and I think you’ll like the way it makes your space feel!

o.p.a. (other people’s art)

I have been particularly struck by the work of two artists of late.  Mark Dion and Mike McFalls.

Last night I had the pleasure of attending a lecture by artist Mark Dion at Cranbrook.  First of all, his talk was riveting.  He speaks in such a narrative, engaging manner, that when he was finished, I just wanted him to keep talking.  Luckily he answered some questions at the end of the lecture.

This piece showcases objects excavated during his project the Tate Thames Dig.  It is a double-sided cabinet that houses the objects such as wine bottle necks, toys, and cell phones in a particular manner according to color, type, and other commonalities.

He spoke about a lot of ideas that have been bouncing around in my head lately.  Among which are curiosity cabinets, alchemy, the surrealists and their influences, and fictionalized truths.  All of this wraps into my AE work and the way that I eventually want to present it.

My brother came across the work of Mike McFalls at the art gallery in the new art complex at Interlochen Center for the Arts in northern Michigan, where I used to teach.  When I recently asked people for suggestions of artists using model train sets in their work, for a post, Joe suggested Mike’s work.  Coincidentally, two of my colleagues at EMU recently curated some of his work into the Contemporary Sculpture exhibition at EMU’s University Gallery.  I especially loved the work when I saw it in person, so much so, that we bought a piece, and I’m trading him a drawing for another one.  Here are some images of his work.

This piece is similar to the one we’re taking home.  I love finding artists who’s work resonates with my current investigations and passions.  I am itching to get back to island paintings, but for now, I am working on a piece from the Beautiful Ones series for an exhibition at the Gallery Project in December that is similar to this one in approach:

Ouroboros I
acrylic on raw canvas with silk-screened imagery sewn to the surface, accompanied by corresponding t-shirts
89″x 59.5″

big things

Some big things are happening right now: a switch from a 2004 crusty cell phone to an iphone (that’s right), and a big island painting.  Here are some photos by the iphone and of the painting (yes, by the phone).  Go!

the iphone has a polaroid app called's Wobbly Bob all hunkered down (aka THE BEAST!)

the iphone has a Polaroid app called's Wobbly Bob all hunkered down (aka THE BEAST!)

I have larger plans for this painting...

in progress...I have larger plans for this painting...

island shake-up

island shake-up