#20. Taipei: Pandas on Tour Exhibition

#20. Taipei: Pandas on Tour Exhibition

I just love pandas. Who doesn’t? Although I’ve never met one, sad to say. There are so few left in the wild on this planet, and here is one artist who is making a statement about that. Check out these wonderful and charming installations, and maybe check out the World Wildlife Fund as well. Reblogged from http://theartjunkie.wordpress.com/

#18. AND I QUOTE No 3 – Artists on Art

#18. AND I QUOTE No 3 – Artists on Art

A delightful series of great quotes from great artists, via Douglas MooreZart. I love this one: “Surely nothing has to listen to so many stupid remarks as a painting in a museum.” ~Edmond & Jules de Goncourt.

#17. Modern Art Explained (no, really. seriously. )

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I do love little books, especially if they have great pictures. They get more points if they are educational, informative and fun to read.  “Why Your Five Year Old Could Not Have Done That: Modern Art Explained”  by British author, educator, art historian and artist Susie Hodge fits the bill perfectly.

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A tiny tome, it examines 100 works of modern art, many of which have historically attracted critical hostility or derision, particularly for appearing to be over-simplified and easy enough for a young child to have done.

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The author discusses and delineates just why, in fact, your five-year-old could not have created that Cy Twombly chalkboard painting, or Pollack’s poured paintings, or Pippilotti Rist‘s hanging underwear chandelier, though you might think otherwise.

ImageThere are five chapters, arranged as Objects/Toys, Expressions/Scribbles, Provocation/Tantrums, Landscapes/Playscapes, and People/Monsters. A few of the artists included: Lynda Benglis, Anselm Kiefer, Gilbert&George, Eva Hesse, Vito Acconci, Louise Bourgeois, Damien Hirst, Dan Flavin, Tracey Emin, Rothko, Richter, Cornell, Johns, and of course Duchamp, Picasso, Modigliani, and the like, along with dozens more. It’s packed. (remember,100 artists!)ImageImage

A great little gem to add to your art library. And it hardly takes up any room. (Here’s a charming and comprehensive 2-minute video of the (very attractive) author talking about the book, and explaining how it’s set up.)

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When I googled Susie Hodge, I found that she has a slew of published books, articles and online pieces ranging from modern and conceptual art to medieval art and architecture to teachers’ resource articles, including the Tate Britain and the Victoria and Albert Museum , as well as books on How to Draw Dogs and How to Draw Cats. (No kidding.) She is an art historian, educator and lecturer, and facilitates workshops in history and non-fiction writing, among other things. 

A companion book by the author is 50 Art Ideas You Really Need To Know which covers, incredibly, fifty defining artistic periods in art history, from Prehistoric art to Hyperrealism and New Media.

Here’s my excellent advice:

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#16. Lisa Hoke’s multicolored upcycled mural

#16. Lisa Hoke’s multicolored upcycled mural

Hoke-vimeo-blues-longshotI had to re-blog this post by Global Art Junkie as it is so beautiful. Call it recycling, upcycling, repurposing, trash-art, what-have-you, but this brilliant (pun intended) sculptural installation by Lisa Hoke is something to wonder at. I love color. I recently did a “look/see” post about Rhode Island artist Tom Deininger‘s work, including his incredible trash-art sculpture… These artists both share a passion and vision for turning discarded, reused materials into works of color and beauty. Lucky for us. Simply amazing. Enjoy!

#14. Victor Nunes: Art you can eat

#14. Victor Nunes: Art you can eat

What a delight to find this in my inbox today. So refreshing to see good art one can smile at, laugh about, and be inspired by. Had to share it… With thanks to http://theartjunkie.wordpress.com/

#11. Look/See: Thomas Deininger at Van Vessem Gallery, Tiverton, RI

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Ok, so the guy might be a genius. Since I am not qualified to designate what “genius” entails, I’ll leave it up to you. But to see for myself, I took a drive the other day down to Tiverton, RI to go see Tom Deininger’s  raw, mighty and meaty work currently on view at the somewhat new (opened May 2013) Van Vessem Gallery, curated and directed by artist/owner Marika Van Vessem.

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Deininger is a painter, yes, seeing with some sort of x-ray vision that defies explanation, but what gets you is the fecundity and raw beauty of the work, along with humorous, timely and sometimes frightening imagery, not to mention painterly craft. The sheer quantity of work, as well as all the various processes in evidence, is astounding.

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Loads of small paintings pack the walls, randomly mounted edge to edge, along with large complex digital prints, sculpture, video installation, and his incredible trash art, composed of multitudinous tidbits and cast-offs; largely plastic, and things probably unmentionable. I don’t know. Impossible to tell. But look closely at the following images, a large 3-d self-portrait in trash.

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The large dead sparrow collage is stunning. Image

Detail of sparrow’s head.ImageWearable art hats and other things.

ImageDon’t even ask me to explain this video/found object/recycled stuff installation. Suffice to say it boggles the mind. You have to see it to get it, and even then you won’t get it. Brilliant. (Those eyes are actually composed of weird stuff, and there are little cameras trained on them, and the images are projected onto the monitors. Or something.)

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No way can I attempt a comprehensive review of this show. Therefore I invite you to check out  Tom’s website as well as this article: Natural Landscapes Recreated in Junk , which gives a good overview and provides wonderful images of some of his recycled-stuff art.

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 I found this Deininger quote from a 2009 interview:  “Perception is really the backbone of my work. I think that all art, even reality, is about perception. And so you’ve got one thing up close and it coalesces into something else all together from a distance. So, just the idea of what is reality, what is truth, has everything to do with perception… It reminds me of how slippery it can be, what is real and what is true.”

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Indeed. In  looking at the prolific and edgy work of Tom Deininger, one gets that slippery feeling of “wtf is real, anyway?” The show is up until Feb 3rd, with a closing party on Feb 2nd. Check out Van Vessem Gallery’s Facebook page for details.

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