Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Archive for August, 2008

Amy Earles at Rare Device, San Francisco

by Suzanne on August 30th, 2008

Quiet Quiet Quiet Until Here by Amy Earles, gouache, vellum, illustration board, watercolour paper - click for details

With her clear lines and pragmatic colour scheme, puppet/collage/papercut artist Amy Earles' work has always had that strangely soothing effect on me that children's books have once you have spent a decade scribbling and dribbling all over them.

Errm... anyway... I'm very happy to announce that Amy has an upcoming solo show at Rare Device in San Francisco - please find all details for Sleep Walk below.

At Night (detail) by Amy Earles - click for details

Opening: Thursday, September 4, 2008, 7 - 9 PM

On show: September 4 - 30, 2008

Address: Rare Device, 1845 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA, tel: 415.863.3969 | Map & directions

Gallery hours: Tue/Wed/Fri/Sat: 12 - 7 PM, Thu: 12 - 9 PM, Sun: 12 - 6 PM

Artist's website

Audrey Kawasaki at Mondo Bizzarro, Rome

by Suzanne on August 30th, 2008

Yasuragi by Audrey Kawasaki, oil and graphite on wood, 2007 - click for details

Attenzione lettori italiani!

Audrey Kawasaki is coming to adorn your beautiful capital with her lascivious nymphettas and their tentacled & skeletal friends.

Kakurenbou opens at Mondo Bizzarro this Thursday and will be on show until early October. Further details below.

Admitting my ambiguous love/hate, fascination/boredom relationship with Audrey's work has made me a lot of teenage iEnemies in the past - but I'm sure that an artist who's constantly inundated with praise can sometimes deal with a tiny bit of constructive criticism, nope?

However, when it comes to certain pieces like Yasuragi (above) and Umi no Yami no Jyoou (below - which probably translates to: "Who reads this is stupid."), the love factor definitely outweighs.

So yes, even though I still prefer your earlier works back when your girls' torsi seemed to float in a Bellmeresque state of constant morpholysis, I do like the presence of more and more skulls and skeletal remains in your works, so all is well, everyone's a winner, no baby seals were clubbed and I'm gonna shut up now. o_O

Umi no Yami no Jyoou by Audrey Kawasaki, oil and graphite on wood, 2007 - click for details

Opening: Thursday, September 4, 2008

On show: September 4 - October 2, 2008

Address: Mondo Bizzarro Gallery, Via Reggio Emilia 32 c/d, 00198 Roma, Italy, tel/fax: 06 44247451 | Map

Artist's website

In other news, I just swallowed a piece of orange plastic I found on the floor thinking it was a piece of a carrot. I can't recommend it.

Julie Heffernan at Catharine Clark Gallery, S.F.

by Suzanne on August 30th, 2008

Study for Self-Portrait as Growth by Julie Heffernan, oil on canvas, 2008 - click for details

My imaginary Siamese blog twin sister Phantasmaphile kindly informs us about an upcoming Julie Heffernan exhibition entitled Broken Homes which is due to open at Catharine Clark Gallery tonight. There's not much information available on the gallery website yet, so please make sure to check back later.

Having just exhibited Timothy Cummings' Last Call, it seems to me that Catharina Clark follows a rather aesthetically consistent exhibition programme which of course is very much to my liking.

Sadly, I've never actually seen any of Julie's works in person, but I've been told that her detailing is vertiginous if not hypnotising.

As an ardent lover of her narrative self-portraits filled with an overwhelming abundance of fragant flowers, exotic birds, consuming fires and distorted mirrors, I must admit that I'm visually not too keen (yet) on her new Brueghelesque organo houses as motives, but they're beyond doubt masterfully executed and the fact that she still refers to them as "self-portraits" definitely fills them with endless layers of meaning and purpose. And I like purpose.

Opens: Saturday, August 30, 2008

Reception: Saturday, September 6, 2008, 1 - 3 PM

On show: August 30 - September 27, 2008

Address: Catharine Clark Gallery, 150 Minna Street, Ground Floor between 3rd and New Montgomery, San Francisco, CA, USA, tel: 415.399.1439 | Map

Gallery hours: Tue - Fri, 10:30 AM - 5:30 PM | Sat: 11 AM - 5:30 PM

Artist's gallery profile


Cover detail of Alex CF's What Alice Saw box set - click on image to purchase

I) Alex has a beautiful Alice print box set for sale!

It's an adorable hand signed and numbered A5 box containing 15 of his sickly sweet What Alice Saw drawings. They're printed on heavy weight drawing paper and I think you should all have one. Or two.

II) Another thing everyone should have is a printable and customisable Christopher Walken mask! How could I ever live without one?!

Nelly Duff

by Suzanne on August 27th, 2008

Gallery | Shop | Blog

I do apologise for the recent lack of the usual enthusiastic posts here on the WurzelEmpireâ„¢ - but rest assured that it's all Nelly Duff's fault who recently took me under her protective - albeit chain-smoking - lips wings as a full-time gallery assistant.

This is Nelly:

Nelly by Ruth Collett for Nelly Duff, resin and acrylic - click for details

And this is me in case we haven't met here before:

Lifelong Friend by Meâ„¢, 2008 - click for details

We're based at 156 Columbia Road in Shoreditch, London, E2 7RG.

Come say hello on Saturdays and Sundays and bring a lighter for Nelly and some vegan chocolate for me.


Maria Sibylla Merian & Daughters: Women of Art & Science

by Suzanne on August 24th, 2008

Plates from Maria Sibylla Merian's Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium, 1705 - click for details

The Getty is currently showing a beautiful exhibition titled Maria Sibylla Merian & Daughters featuring female artists who - back in the days when being a female artist (let alone scientist!) earned you more disgust than respect - dared to blur the academic boundary between art and science and created works that still today resonate with knowledge, exactitude and timeless beauty.

If you've never seen a Merian tête-à-tête, this is a great chance to see how obsessive-compulsively composed and insanely detailed (has anyone ever attempted to count all the tiny baby ants in Merian's oeuvre, I wonder?) her scientific drawings really are.

Plates from Maria Sibylla Merian's Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium, 1705 - click for details

Closing: Sunday, August 31, 2008

Address: The Getty, 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, California 90049, CA, USA | Directions | Map

Gallery hours: Tue - Thu / Sun: 10 AM - 6 PM, Fri - Sat: 10 AM - 9 PM

Admission: FREE!

Slideshow | Special events

Further reading: Maria Sibylla Merian and Daughters: Women of Art and Science (by Ella Reitsma) | Insects and Flowers: The Art of Maria Sibylla Merian (by David Brafman & Stephanie Schrader) | ... and for those on a budget (like me:) Maria Sibylla Merian: New Book of Flowers (Minis, by Melanie Klier)

Marc Swanson at Cornell University, NY

by Suzanne on August 22nd, 2008

State of Emergency by Marc Swanson, mixed media, 2001 - click for details

Cryptozoossemblaxidermyâ„¢ artist Marc Swanson will present ten years worth of mixed media works in a solo exhibition titled Hurry on Sundown which will go on show tomorrow at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art (details below).

The description of the show sounds pretty comprehensive indeed:

"[...] The exhibition will [include] mirror paintings, sparkling encrusted sculptures, drawings, and two dioramic installations:

Always and Nothing, based on his father’s backyard in New Hampshire; and Killing Moon: Self-Portrait as a Yeti a life-size sculpture of a Himalayan snowman. [...]"

Sounds like fun.

Opens: Tomorrow, Saturday, August 23, 2008

On show: August 23 - October 19, 2008

Address: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Central & University Aves., Ithaca, NY 14853, tel: +1 607 255 6464

Gallery hours: Tue - Sun 11 AM - 5 PM | Admission is free.

Via The Art Newspaper

Magda Trzaski & Co. at La Luz de Jesus, L.A.

by Suzanne on August 22nd, 2008

Baby Duck & Snake Pit by Magda Trzaski, mixed media, 2008 - click for details

Etsy has taught us that everyone can make money from shadow boxes filled with cogs and other rusty rubbish your cats threw up on your kitchen floor.

But there are a few talented individuals like Magda Trzaski out there who actually make good use of the medium by turning it into a home for skinny emo Mickey Mouses with sharp vampire teeth. Sweet.

Magda & friends are currently exhibiting new works at La Luz de Jesus' annual summer group show Cream of the Crop.

Closing: Sunday, August 31, 2008

Address: La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA, tel: 323-666-7667

Featuring: Magda Trzaski, Mike Sosnowski, Jessica A. W. Cooper, et al.

Gallery hours: Mon - Wed: 11 AM - 7 PM, Thu - Sat: 11 AM - 9 PM, Sun: 12 - 6 PM

Helena Blomqvist at Angelika Knäpper Gallery, Stockholm

by Suzanne on August 21st, 2008

Mourning Procession by Helena Blomqvist - click for details

If you're a chimp dressed up as a Victorian mourner, you'll always get a mention on this blog. Particularly if you bring all your chimp friends along and form a neat, endless funeral procession. Because I'm completely biased when it comes to immaculately dressed marching chimpanzees. Yup.

Anyway, without further ado, I present to you the lovely work of young Stockholm based photographer Helena Blomqvist whose The Last Golden Frog exhibition opens at Angelika Knäpper Gallery in Stockholm next week. Please find all details below.

The Shepard (2004, left) & Woman with Dog (2005, right) by Helena Blomqvist - click for details

Opens: Saturday, August 30, 2008

On show: August 30 - September 28, 2008

Address: Angelika Knäpper Gallery, Tegnérgatan 4, 113 58 Stockholm, Sweden, tel: +46 8 . 54593119

Gallery hours: Tue - Fri, 11 AM - 6 PM | Sat/Sun: 12 - 4 PM

Cuddly Sunday Afternoon Art For All the Family From Fred Einaudi

by Suzanne on August 17th, 2008

Paddy Paws by Fred Einaudi, oil on canvas - click for details

My inbox managing slave labouring robotic WurzelMonkeys have just forwarded me this short and sweet email from a certain Mr Fred Einaudi:

"Thought you might be interested in my paintings..."

Hmm... all right... let's see what you have there, monsieur Einaudi...

Patriot (left) and The Mermaid (right) by Fred Einaudi, oil on canvas - click for details

• Child nurses proudly presenting their mummified zombie cat patients? Check.

• Bucketfuls of skulls in the beautiful early-morning haze? Check.

• A curious boy poking a drowned body with a stick under a rainbow sky that would make the cover editors of the Watchtower turn green with envy? Check.

• Seductively introspective Victorian girls with robotic arms? Check.

Hunger by Fred Einaudi, oil on canvas - click for details

So yes, monsieur, I can safely say that I'm not just "interested" in your work, but that I think you might even be that insane painter shitting in my brain at nightfall.

Oh, and à propos brains: Brain will be battlefield of future, warns US intelligence report. Engarde!

Walton Ford & Co. at S.F. Arts Commission Gallery

by Suzanne on August 13th, 2008

A Sensorium (detail) by Walton Ford, 2003, watercolour, gouache, ink & pencil on paper

Another great West Coast exhibition is closing its doors this weekend: The cerebrally titled A Complicated Dominion: Nature & New Political Narratives group show at S.F. Arts Commission Gallery - featuring such influential artists as Tara Tucker, Tiffany Bozic and, most prominently, Walton Ford.

In a time when every Etsy bricoleur and their dog have the indecency to call themselves "anachronists" and "pioneers" in the same breath, the real stylistic anachronists seem to have gone into hiding. But alas, true artistic genius simply cannot hide - it'll eventually be rediscovered, heralded by heavenly trumpets, escorted by the golden air-brushed bums of naked putti. Or something.

Bula Matari by Walton Ford, 1998, watercolour, gouache, ink & pencil on paper, 60 1/2 x 119 7/8 inches

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that artists like Walton Ford don't need silly labels because their oeuvre speaks volumes for itself. From the beholder's perspective, Ford could have lived and worked anytime in the past 3 centuries - he could have been Albertus Seba's intern, Théodore Géricault's art school mate (some of his monumental works easily measure 3 meters), a scientific illustrator on the HMS Beagle or an extravagant Victorian pasha painting monkey prostitutes in an opium den somewhere in the Caribbean - as a matter of fact, we might never have been able to accurately pin Ford down in the here and now if I hadn't found the following photographic evidence in.. errmm.. Men's Vogue o_O:

Walton Ford in his studio, holding up a golden eagle, the subject of Delirium (2004), left. (Photo by Martin Schoeller)

Sadly, it's not clear to me which Ford works have been chosen for the show, but I'm pretty sure they selected some impressive and representative pieces. Further details below.

Closing: Saturday, August 16, 2008

Featuring: Walton Ford, Tiffany Bozic, Tara Tucker, et al.

Address: SFAC Gallery, 401 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA 94102, USA, tel: 415.554.6080 | Map | Directions

Gallery hours: Wed - Sat: 12 - 5 PM

Walton Ford interviewed by Grist Magazine (Sep 18, 2006)

Walton Ford's impressive Pancha Tantra book

Dying Words by Walton Ford, 2005, mixed media, 16 x 21 1/2 inches