Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Archive for July, 2011

Chicago People: Kaugummi at Golden Age, one-night-only!

by Suzanne on July 8th, 2011

From Dondoro by Estelle Hanania & Hoichi Okamoto, published by Kaugummi, 2011, 48 pages, FR/EN, full colour offset, 1000 copies - click to enlarge

If you happen to find yourself in Chicago tomorrow evening: This is an event not to be missed as one of my very favourite French publishers of small press is having a retrospective displaying more than 70 zines from their 7-year publishing history.

If you've never heard of Kaugummi Books, you obviously haven't been paying attention to this blog and I suggest you go stand in a corner and think about what you've done.

From It's My Life by Aleksandra Waliszewska, published by Kaugummi, 2010, 20 pages, black and white on pink paper, 100 copies, handnumbered - click to enlarge

For all others: The event will take place at Golden Age from 6 - 9 PM tomorrow and I highly suggest you show up with a few bucks to support independent publishing.

Venue details below.

From Death Patrol by Stephane Prigent, published by Kaugummi, 2011, 20 pages, printed on grey paper, 100 copies, handnumbered - click to enlarge

On show: Jul 9, 2011, 6 - 9 PM

Address: Golden Age, 119 N Peoria St. #2D, Chicago, IL 60607, USA, tel: +1 312 288 8535

Opening hours: Fri - Sat: 12 - 6 PM and by appointment

Kaugummi Books

WurzelForum discussion

Madeline von Foerster and Benjamin A. Vierling at Roq la Rue, Seattle

by Suzanne on July 7th, 2011

The Tale of the Golden Toad by Madeline Von Foerster, oil and egg tempera on panel, 24" x 36" - click to enlarge

Madeline and Benjamin informed me about their upcoming twin exhibition which opens tomorrow evening at the glorious Roq la Rue in Seattle.

It's great to see a show with two artists who go absolutely perfectly together and manage to enhance each other's oeuvres magically.

For many moons, Madeline has shown an uncanny anachronistic skill to amalgamate Renaissance style with Wunderkammer fauna and flora and add a certain doll-like feel to her protagonists who always seem to contain a grain of Olimpia despite the lively shimmer and sumptuous richness of the pearls and silk.

And even though homines universales like Ole Worm, Albertus Seba and Ernst Haeckel would undoubtedly be collectors of her work if they were contemporaries, nothing ever looks dated. In The Tale of the Golden Toad, the details in the lace are just as fresh and youthful as the organic details under the glass dome.

There is something slightly unnerving about The Tale of the Golden Toad though - it's the moment you realise that the protagonist has actually become part of the Wunderkammer and - starting from her hands and just like Daphne, just like Francesca Woodman - seems to be turning into a display herself.

Vierling's artistic approach is just as epic if a bit more mythologically inclined. With intricately painted ornamental wooden frames containing grotesque scenes and tiny insects, he manages to create a multi-dimensional trompe-l'Å“il that's quite breathtaking.

Details below.

Medusa by Benjamin A. Vierling, egg tempera & oil on panel, 22" x 22", 2011 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Friday, July 8, 6 - 9 PM, both artists will be in attendance

On show: Jul 8 - Aug 6, 2011

Address: Roq La Rue, 2312 2nd Ave, Seattle, WA 98121, USA, tel: (206) 374-8977 | Map

Opening hours: Wed - Sat: 1 - 6 PM

Press release

WurzelForum discussion

Corey Helford Gallery's 5th Anniversary Show, Culver City

by Suzanne on July 5th, 2011

One Day I Made A Great Find by Kazuki Takamatsu, acrylic, acrylic gouache, giclee on tarpaulin - click to enlarge

Not much to say about this one other than:

Yes, there are a few sweet gems in this show (Kazuki Takamatsu, Korin Faught, Van Arno, Ray Caesar, Tom Bagshaw, Billy Norrby, and maybe a few others) but I will honestly never understand why already successful galleries can't see that trying to gain an ever bigger audience by adding random overhyped and undertalented street "artists" (oh, smart move, I see you went for the save-cause-inoffensive Brit quartet D*Face/Eine/Pure Evil/Hush) is not in ANY WAY a curatorial achievement, but, let's be frank here, a wee bit embarrassing.

From the statement:

The common thread between these artists is that they are living contemporary artists whose work is hot and populist, rejecting the elitism that created the cold, sterile art and unapproachable galleries that dominated the late twentieth century. This is your art and these are your artists.

Okay, I am relieved to hear they're not the undead and kudos for being so brave as to call your artists "populist" - that takes guts as it's not very flattering and I wonder whether they'd all agree. From a curatorial point of view, however, the street "art" in your group show - which is all far from being STREET art and that's the point! - does mainly one thing to the rest of the featured artists: It devalues their artistic efforts.

And Luke Chueh? I'm not even starting this discussion.

Also, it's actually called "tarpaulin", thanks. These things matter. Being a gallery, this is your field of expertise.

Yes, I could go on.

Happy 5th birthday, Corey Helford - from your elitist friends across the pond (who are really just art historically aware art lovers).

Details below.

Untitled by Korin Faught, oil on panel - click to enlarge

On show: July 1 - 13, 2011

Address: Corey Helford Gallery, 8522 Washington Boulevard, Culver City, CA 90232, USA, tel: 310-287-2340

Hours: Tue - Sat: 12 - 6 PM

Featuring: Basically everyone. Plus so-called "street art". In a gallery context. Ha, the irony!

Preview show