Friday, August 27, 2010

Eclectix Artist Interview With Mark Bryan

"I heard a quote a few days ago which I liked very much. It was something like “ An artist’s job is to be a witness to the times he lives in”  I agree with that sentiment. There is nothing really new in human experience other than the times we live in. For me, art is about sharing our..."

The Lowbrow Tarot Show Is Coming Up! Halloween in the City of the Fallen Angels...

Curated by Aunia Kahn and a long time coming - this show will be well worth a trek for. You may remember some of the artists from past Eclectix shows - Cate RangelPatrick “Star 27” Deignan, Edith Lebeau, Jennybird Alcantara and lastly Aunia's work, from many exhibits and her beautiful solo show "Our Quiet Earthquake".
I so wanted to host this show, at Eclectix here in the East Bay, but alas it was not to be - the economy just had no mercy. Even Duffy's belting soul tune couldn't turn it around. :) Most the other artists included are long time favorites as well, notable newbrow artists of impeccable technique and imagination. Picking the pieces for this show must have been heartbreaking. Just choosing the ones to post here was hard enough. For a look at all the pieces and their creators go here.
 The Lowbrow Tarot Project will showcase 23 new works of art from the lowbrow art movement in an exhibition at La Luz de Jesus in Los Angeles on October 1, 2010. It will be up thru Halloween, October 31st, our favorite day! To accompany the exhibit, a hard cover tabletop book and full color tarot card deck are in the works. Hopefully this show will travel so that we all might get a chance to see it.
Featuring artists: Carrie Ann Baade, Christopher Ulrich, Edith Lebeau, Cate Rangel, Kris Kuksi, Chris Mars, Christopher Umana, Chris Conn, Brian M. Viveros, Claudia Drake, Heather Watts, Molly Crabapple, David Stoupakis, Laurie Lipton, Patrick “Star 27” Deignan, Chet Zar, Jessica Joslin, Danni Shinya Luo, Jennybird Alcantara, Angie Mason, Scott G. Brooks, Aunia Kahn and Daniel Martin Diaz.
"There are 22 cards in the Major Arcana, each showing some aspect of the human experience. The cards of the Major Arcana are focused on three themes: the realm of the material world, the realm of the intuitive mind, and the realm of change." - Aunia Kahn

Monday, August 23, 2010

Visiting "Art From The New World" in The Old World of Bristol

Personal favorite in the show is this stunner by Ray Caesar

A stroke of good luck came my way when I was able to see the "Art From The New World" show in Bristol, while visiting family in England. The exhibit's date had been extended due to it's popularity, bringing in lots of new visitors to the Bristol Museum. 
The museum is an incredible art piece on it's own- detailed Roman castle architecture, as many of the university buildings nearby are. Easy to spend the day just checking out the scenery- arched gothic churches and medieval looking spires abound. It's a nice college town and makes a pleasant day trip by train if you happen to be in London.

Walking thru the doors, the first art attack is a huge stack of books painted on their sides- a dark bride and groom appraises you.... by Mike Stilkey.
Loved this piece, a different and original approach.

Once inside the main lobby, a wonderful angel greets you with a paint can dumped on her head, gotta love it! 

This is an excellent show with an all-star line up, most with new pieces created for the show. The press for the exhibit described it as - "a big brash exhibition of the new American art scene". Many thanks and kudos to the Bristol Museum for having the balls to show this work in an environment worthy of it's vision. They gave Banksy a show a few years ago; that would have been fun to see. Only a very few American museums have stepped up and shown these artist's, the Laguna Museum of Art and the San Jose Museum of Art; maybe now some more will. Also a thanks to the Corey Helford Gallery for arranging it all.
Octopus chandaliers hover overhead, by Adam Wallacavage 

Camille Rose Garcia's "Sneewitchen" 

Pictured here are just a few of the best from the show. I have omitted some pieces that have been very publicized already (for example: Mark Ryden's "Snow Yak"), hoping to concentrate here on the less exposed ones and of course, some faves.
Marion Peck
Chris Anthony
Detail from Ray Caesar's "Love Letters"
Johnny Rodriguez (kmndz)
Melissa Forman

As wonderful as this show is, I can't help but dream of a "bigger and brasher" show of just the cream of the pop. An exhibit of the surreal masterpieces of the newbrow scene, the original best pieces by the best artists. Even if they have been sold, to get them all together on loan, for a  show to travel thru-out the States. It could start at LACMA and then to SF MOMA and then to MOMA in New York and onward to European museums. Perhaps the art list might read- Ryden's "The Creatrix", Ron English's "Abraham-Obama", Camille Rose Garcia's "The Night Greed", Shawn Barber's  "The Unsaid", Sylvia Ji's "Dona Dolorosa", Todd Schorr's "Wish Fulfillment From Another World", Isabel Samaras' "Gone Native", Brian Vivero's "EvilLast", Chet Zar's "Sallgood", Jennybird Alcantara's "Treacherous Gardens"Chris Mars's "Dichotomy", Ray Caesar's "Descent", Marion Peck's "Bouquet" or Colette Calascione's "Anarchist In Love"... I have to stop myself here, it could and should go on and on, but you get the fantasy... A show of shows so to speak, to blow that boring art world away. 

Participating artists include:

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A New Eclectix Interview With Isabel Samaras

"It all kinda whirls together - old movies, a pretty broad spectrum of art, music music music, all the sci-fi books I tore through as a kid, Ultraman and all kinds of Kaiju, fairy tales and fables, the absurdist humor of Monty Python, monsters of every ilk, and very most especially all the many permutations of love: unrequited, blazing out of control, thwarted, tender, forbidden, maternal, and inter-species. Often a painting will..." 

For a little life story, artist tricks and some gospel according to Isabel -

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Amazing Video of Morphing Masterpieces

Stumbled on this really wonderful video of paintings of women - all morphing together into each other. Someone really took some time to do this, they did a beautiful job and it works really well.

Sit back at least a few feet from your screen when you watch it, helps with the overall progressions. Grab a drink, kick back for a few minutes and enjoy. 

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Eric Joyner Interview

Just got an interview in my email with our fave local boy, artist Eric Joyner. 
Written by the art bloggers, Chippy Coates and Richard Scarry
For a peek at it go here

The Rare Phone Booth, Embellished

Walking around Berkeley the other day and spotted this phone booth. Got me to thinking how rare they are nowadays and also to wonder how long before they are all gone? Gone the way of the typewriter and their lovely clacking noises, ditto machines and the cool smell the purple memos made, flashbulbs in their funky cube shapes...  Mailboxes also seem to be disappearing, there used to be one at every major corner or shopping spot and now you have to hunt for them. Newspapers are also biting the dust, the empty racks at the Bart stations are kinda depressing. 
This phone booth had been decorated by some artist and I thought it looked so cool. Some untalented tagger came along and did a little damage but it still looks fun and poppy. The stickers and ads on the phone itself were a fun juxtaposition as well.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Lady Gaga- Made Out of BBs, Believe It or Not!

Ripley’s Believe It or Not! has acquired a portrait of Lady Gaga made out of 61,509 Airsoft BBs, the plastic balls used in a popular type of BB gun. 
“The artwork was created by Gainesville, Florida artist John O’Hearn, who is primarily a sculptor, but has spent the last few years experimenting with Airsoft BB’s as a medium,” the release explains. “The BB’s act as pixels in the mosaics he creates. O’Hearn says he can recreate any picture or portrait from just 5 colors of BB’s — red, yellow, blue, black and white. This project took about a month to finish.”

- Via Popwatch

Dean Fleming's Mouth Watering Wanderlust

Dean Fleming's newest piece is just so friggin' gorgeous, I couldn't wait to share it in a future Eclectix issue. So here she is, today, in all her glory, "Wanderlust".

Sunday, August 1, 2010

25 Years of Pixar, A Review of the Oakland Exhibit That Kicks Ass!

The current Pixar exhibit (at the Oakland Museum) is one of the best I have seen at a contemporary art museum since the Todd Schorr solo in San Jose. This show is a "significantly enhanced" version of the exhibition, which is returning home to Oakland after a world tour that began at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 2005. Kind of sad that it didn't begin here, since Pixar is right next door to Oaktown in Emeryville, but it's hard to compete with MOMA's draw. It should have opened right here in their own hood, then it would have been a true homecoming. Hats off to the Oakland Museum curators, for taking the helm to steer this museum in a much needed, fresh and new direction. (Support the place - spend some money there!)
Jessie!.. still in love with her, even after all these years...
This is a large, very solid show - full of room after room of 25 years of wonderful art. Original sketches, paintings, models and storyboards from all the wonderful Pixar animated endeavors. Pencil sketches, watercolors, oils, digital paintings, sculpture, charcoal, pastels - you name it, all your fave Pixar creations in every media imaginable. Beautiful sketches and renderings of tons of characters, from Buzz to Ratatouille.
The darkened room encasing the "Toy Story Zoetrope," (above) is a knock-out, really enlightens one on the essence of animation and how it all works. It comprises a 3D turntable populated by the Toy Story figures in carefully sequenced postures that spring to life when it all spins under the strobe lights. Leave yourself at least 15 minutes to stare in wonder at this puppy.
This Bug's Life art is titled as a pencil drawing!  Unbelievable rendering.
Roz in all her glory... did you fill out your paperwork?
When you go, make sure you leave enough time to see everything, at the very least - two hours...  And you may want to book your tickets ahead, they are admitting in intervals to keep the crowds down. When I went the pace was perfect, not too crowded, although the girl at the ticket desk could have used another helper.
The charcoals by Nathan Fowkes for "Sharks Tale" were jaw dropping.
Can't beat "slinky dog"...
Don't you pay any mind to all those hi-brow art critics out there that refuse to realize animation and cartooning is "real" art.
Just remember the great quote by Anton Ego from Ratatouille -

"In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment. We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and to read. But the bitter truth we critics must face, is that in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is probably more meaningful than our criticism designating it so."
This show is so good I will be going back for a second injection. The amount of Pixar artists and their incredible art here is a true feast. A historical journey thru our joint Pixar past, all the characters, places and life lessons that made us smile, gasp, laugh and cry.