IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative- Eric Beltz

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This show features the work of nine Koplin Del Rio artists and completes the series of three IDENTITY exhibitions introducing the gallery’s artists to a Seattle audience. Curator Eleana Del Rio grouped these artists together because they share a common interest in pictorial narrative. They all invite the viewer to interact with the imagery and engage with the work in a manner that allows two narratives—both the artist’s and the viewer’s—to play out over time.

Featuring David Bailin, Eric Beltz, Shay Bredimus, Wes Christensen(1949-2015), Josh Dorman, Tim Lowly, Michelle Muldrow, Len Paschoal, and Fred Stonehouse

November 3 – December 23, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, November 3, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #61: Eric Beltz

 

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1. What is your ideal working environment? – space, music, lighting, etc.
What I have learned is that I can work almost anywhere – which I recommend: embracing a flexible attitude about your circumstances. I just need a little room because my set-up is simple: easel, taboret, clip lamp, bookshelves. My first studio was in my backyard in an old, partially-converted storeroom. My ideal location would be near where I live. But this place was far from ideal. When I turned on the lights at night, mice leapt off tables and chairs. One night a cockroach crawled out of my pocket when I sat down. I found a black widow under a rag on the floor. The final straw, what ended my ability to work there was that I developed an intense allergy to the Chinese Elms that surrounded the property which produced burning snot each Spring. So no Chinese Elms.

I also need natural light. Sky lights create the feeling closest to being outdoors because of the direction of light. I had a studio for a year with no windows at all. To make it worse it was lit with fluorescent lighting. Working for eight hours a day without natural light depressed my dogs and me too. Working in black and white didn’t help either. But this set up a vividly overwhelming color experience once I went outside at the end of the day. I never knew there were psychedelic shades of gray asphalt! Dirt glowed, chain-link was radiant, rocks and leaves pulsed with life, and of course the sky felt like an infinite, undulating blanket of blues. I have retained the ability to recall these sensations but I don’t miss that studio at all.

A little room. Natural light. And if I could I would command birds to flutter around outside a large picture window during the day. A variety of urban finches and sparrows are fine. But I would like scrub jays and mourning doves too, and somehow for turkey vultures and crows to join in as well. The double benefit of this is there would be no need for music or the radio. And at quitting time I want a Great Horned Owl to land on a large Sycamore by a creek and tell me goodnight as I leave.

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2. Is there a specific motivator in getting you into the studio? – after morning news? coffee? after family is asleep at night?
Routine and necessity. I work the day shift now in the studio where I once worked late into the night and early morning. Having a studio outside of the home has created a necessary separation between home and studio life. Studio life can become all-life which is unhealthy as it tends to encourage a little too much self-referential thinking. So I do not wonder when or why to go to the studio. It is a daily labor of my vocation and an integrated part of my life.

3. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?
For over ten years now I have worked only with graphite on Bristol. My drawings take months each so I work on just one at a time. Although I have a large wall covered in sheet metal where I hang with magnets a variety of sketches, written ideas, reference material, and doodles for future projects. I always keep an eye on the future while being present and fully engaged in my current drawing. I don’t know how long this graphite-only thing will last – it wasn’t really planned. I recently had to buy $500 worth of my favorite erasers because they stopped making them and I cannot draw without these specific types of erasers. So perhaps when I run out I will try something new? I have a vague plan to eventually work large and in oil pastels once my eyes can no longer focus on the small details in my drawings such as the minute reflection on the tiny eye of a half-inch tall quail.

4. Is there anything you would like to share as personal interests outside of the studio – outdoor activity, cooking, reading, museum/gallery hopping?
It has been hard for me to have interests outside of what I do in the studio because everything is inter-connected. When I read I do not read for diversion I read for learning and inspiration. Most things I do I have my studio mind still active so it disallows my attempts to relax really. The only activity that takes me fully away from the studio is cooking. There is no wishful thinking in cuisine. Especially if you are cooking for others. I take a measure of pride in my abilities and enjoy serving others with something I made that is intended to make them happy. It is a much less selfish enterprise than drawing at least in the short term because your work is immediately and perhaps more objectively judged right there in front of you. Nice wine helps too. Pretty soon I will be finishing off my last 2007 Sanford Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir which was a great year for that region as was 2012. 2014 is looking like it will be great too perhaps because of the drought and the vineyard’s ability to fully control irrigation.

5. In what way is your work a reflection of “tradition by way of ‘method’”?
I have a greatly simplified view of art history but it grounds me to a general understanding of where the kinds of techniques I use and teach have fit (or not) within the Master Narrative of the history of art. The way Jansen’s tells it, the ‘beginning’ or at least a major turning point of Western Art is obviously the Renaissance in Italy. And what is the evidence? It is the figure and it is perspective. It is fidelity to the visible world in art. Both setting and characters. Western Art History had its precursors of course but this was the trajectory hitting its zenith. Immediately after, however, is the beginning of the next phase of Western Art. Once some artists proved a kind of objective representation was possible, others began questioning whether this efficacy produced unnecessary limitations so they started tearing apart elements of the figurative tradition and perspectival space. This phase of the narrative which involved challenges to the figure and depictions of space hits its high note with Cubism and then nothing really follows a linear order and art history becomes a matter of cataloging the multiplicity. Through much of this history the illustrators and cartoonists kept their focus on depicting the figure and the space within which it could be made to share. Mid-20th Century cartoonists like Burne Hogarth helped to bring the techniques of the Renaissance back into circulation by using them in comics like Tarzan but also by teaching and writing books. The history of tearing the figure apart was shown to have a counter-narrative and a history of artists who continued to adapt and apply the old lessons rather than to simply reject or attack them without a concurrent desire to keep at least part. So in a way, to draw something as I do is to attach myself to an alternate current in art history.

6. With the examples of your work represented in IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative, are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight into your artist vision to a new viewer?
When Jesus Swims He Becomes The Ocean is one of the first and few drawings so far that I have done that have an internal picture frame. That is, the image touches a crisp edge where the drawing abruptly stops. For most of the past decade I have let the image stop near an invisible edge or blur and fade along a softer line. I never wanted my drawings to have to deal with a consistent space in all parts of the drawing but to be able to float as a patchwork of connected pieces- usually connected by a central figure. I also liked the tension of a drawing acknowledging its own limits by stopping before it got cropped. As I move deeper into what I think I am capable of, as I expand my toolbox, and as I continue the need to challenge myself further, this was one compositional device that I had not yet explored. It has significantly expanded the ways I can deal with space development and try to connect pieces that don’t really go together logically.

In When Jesus Swims there are four zones: the landscape, the foreshortened water pattern that touches the shore, the surface of water that Jesus’s head emerges from that supports the floating birds and otter and that also includes the white water pattern that surrounds the bottom of the drawing, and then the window into the underwater area of kelp and fish. These all sort of connect spatially but not really. The foreshortening zooms forward at one pace from landscape to Jesus but then slows down significantly continuing forward to the bottom of the draw. The foreshortening completely stops with the underwater part which is parallel to the viewer. There is an exciting ambiguity in representational techniques and it is fun to play with them like this. I developed a greater appreciation for this ambiguity when teaching and studying absurdly convoluted perspectival processes: like mapping out reflections for instance. You have a lot of freedom to choose how these seemingly rigid concepts get applied. You can do them correctly to fool the eye or you can make a mess and fool the eye some other way. I find it very rewarding to find places in my work where I understand the forces I am manipulating just enough to steer them with confidence while also surprising myself with the results. I had little understanding of what this drawing would look like until I finished it which I think is hard to understand looking at something that looks so well-planned and ordered. It is and it isn’t. I have a notion, I have faith, and I have patience.

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“When Jesus Swims He Becomes The Ocean”, 2015, graphite on Bristol, 46” x 33” framed

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“Andean Condor”, 2015, graphite on Bristol, 30″ x 22″ framed

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“California Condor”, 2014, graphite on Bristol, 22″ x 24″ framed

 

IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative- Michelle Muldrow

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IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative, curated by Eleana Del Rio

This show features the work of ten Koplin Del Rio artists and completes the series of three IDENTITY exhibitions introducing the gallery’s artists to a Seattle audience. Curator Eleana Del Rio grouped these artists together because they share a common interest in pictorial narrative. They all invite the viewer to interact with the imagery and engage with the work in a manner that allows two narratives—both the artist’s and the viewer’s—to play out over time.

Featuring David Bailin, Eric Beltz, Shay Bredimus, Wes Christensen(1949-2015), Josh Dorman, Tim Lowly, Michelle Muldrow, Len Paschoal, Fred Stonehouse, and Yuriko Yamaguchi

November 3 – December 23, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, November 3, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #59: Michelle Muldrow

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1. What is your ideal working environment? – space, music, lighting, etc.
My ideal environment has light. Space is nice, but having good light is what I treasure most and is most difficult to find when landing an ideal studio. I always have music playing, it helps me zone out and just focus on painting. My most favorite studios have trains nearby, seeing and hearing the trains puts me in a wonderful creative headspace.

2. Is there a specific motivator in getting you into the studio? – after morning news? coffee? after family is asleep at night?
Deadlines and coffee

3. What is your preferred medium?  Do you work on one project at a time or several?
I change my medium according to series. I pay attention to how the materials best convey and translate the conceptual and emotional content of the work. I usually swing between casein paint on clay panel and gouache on paper, but I have some bodies of work in acrylic. I rarely work in oil, since I prefer to layer and scrape and layer again, oil doesn’t really allow for the rapid way I work.

I always work on 4-6 pieces at once. I have found if I work on only one piece at a time,vI get too precious, I overthink. I like to feel like I am in the middle of a conversation, so working on many paintings all at once allows me to feel free and just paint.

4. Is there anything you would like to share as personal interests outside of the studio – outdoor activity, cooking, reading, museum/gallery hopping?
I am a singer/songwriter, so when I am not painting, I am recording, writing songs, singing and overall challenging the patience of my long suffering family.

5. In what way is your work a reflection of “tradition by way of ‘method’”?
Coming from the perspective of a landscape painter, I like to play with the tradition and history of landscape painting and push what defines landscape painting. Depending on the series, I factor in how it  is sourced (mapping? photos? interiors? exteriors? plein air?) the method of painting (architectural drawings? acrylic/plastic? casein/kaolin/object? classical painting styles/gouache?) how we perceive place and how we experience our identity in relation to environment  (interiors, exteriors, mapping imagery) then I explore how the images are displayed, (traditional mounted on the wall? organizing images using taxonomic schemata?) I suppose that is the best, albeit, broad answer to this question-I use the traditions of landscape painting as a departure point to explore what the experience of landscape and environment can be.

6. With the examples of your work represented in IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative, are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight into your artist vision to a new viewer?
In my last body of work, “In Defense of Home” series, my paintings ventured into personal narrative and landscape, exploring the homes and locations that I lived as a child. Because these locations were on military bases, not everything was accessible via Google Maps, due to military security and classified areas and I became interested in Google Maps as a portal into how we view landscapes, our own nostalgia of places, and  our own memories.

Soon after this exhibition, I knew I was planning to relocate to a new city/state, but I was not exactly sure which one (California? Seattle? Oregon?). In my practical research, I spent a lot of time checking out real estate listings and then investigating the neighborhoods on Google Maps. This modern experience is so different from how I  navigated new neighborhoods when I was a child. Back then, I had to learn my neighborhood through walking, biking, cars, but now I have this resource where I can “walk” down foreign streets and  become familiar with a place. And yet, the virtual experience is not the lived experience, things get truncated, places are incomplete, the perimeters around knowing and not knowing are still a layered experience of what is actually understood.I began painting these “mapped” environments as my experience with landscape was becoming more of a virtual experience and yet my knowledge felt as limited as these partial “maps”, I like that in addition to maps, I “felt” the presence of satellites, space. The technology that brings us these landscapes is also a layered process, from satellite views, to maps, to overhead street views and code…These paintings grew organically from my search for my “new home” and  my relationships with landscape and my computer. I did eventually land  in Portland.

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“Blueprint/Imprint”, 2016, casein, graphite on kaolin clay panel, 16″ x 20″

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“Search, Markers”, 2016, casein, graphite on kaolin clay panel, 40″ x 30″

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“Terrain, Possible and Remembered”, 2016, casein, graphite on kaolin clay panel, 12″ x 12″

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“Locater/Location”, 2016, casein, graphite on kaolin clay panel, 40″ x 30″

IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative- David Bailin

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IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative, curated by Eleana Del Rio

This show features the work of ten Koplin Del Rio artists and completes the series of three IDENTITY exhibitions introducing the gallery’s artists to a Seattle audience. Curator Eleana Del Rio grouped these artists together because they share a common interest in pictorial narrative. They all invite the viewer to interact with the imagery and engage with the work in a manner that allows two narratives—both the artist’s and the viewer’s—to play out over time.

Featuring David Bailin, Eric Beltz, Shay Bredimus, Wes Christensen(1949-2015), Josh Dorman, Tim Lowly, Michelle Muldrow, Len Paschoal, Fred Stonehouse, and Yuriko Yamaguchi

November 3 – December 23, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, November 3, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #58: David Bailin

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1. What is your ideal working environment? – space, music, lighting, etc.
I can work in most environments as long as they have long unencumbered walls and no windows. The caveat is that whatever the environment, it has an impact on my work. It determines in not so subtle ways my approach to my work every time I enter it.

I had a theater in NYC and my method of writing and directing my plays has remained with me. When I am developing a series, I inhabit the character(s) I draw. I become them. Paranoiac, or senile, or anti-heroic – I build my drawings as both director and actor, controlling the handling of the charcoal to reveal the actions of the characters or the mood of the environment. So the studio is both an antagonist and protagonist within my technique.

The best studio I had was a basement studio that covered a half city block. I was able to work on complete series at once. I grew accustomed to the artificial light and serious lack of ventilation. Subterranean and bolt-locked, it was a physical construction of the themes I dealt with at the time.

Currently, my garage studio is a crowded space, open to intrusion and attached to house distractions- filled with boxes, old rolled up drawings and paintings, webs of extension cords, miscellaneous piles of materials encroaching on my working space. It is a perfect studio for the late series dealing with cubicles, work routines, hoarding, dreams and dementia.

My ideal studio, though, the one I have dreamed of since middle-school, is a barn studio. My mentor, who was a liturgical artist, had set up his studio in a barn outside of town. It was wonderful – huge open spaces, unencumbered wall surfaces, massive storage areas, and isolated. Someday I will find one just like it.

2. Is there a specific motivator in getting you into the studio? – after morning news? coffee? after family is asleep at night?
I don’t have any specific motivation for going into the studio. I arrive there by habit. The start is always the problem. I spend a lot of my time thinking through ideas and working on translating those ideas into images. I am not an artist who starts by playing with the materials or with some kind of ritual. Every drawing is a deep hole I’ve dug, climbed into and then attempted to get out of.

3. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?
I work almost exclusively with Grumbacher #16 medium Vine Charcoal on paper prepared with a taupe (Bailin Gray) eggshell acrylic paint and enhanced with coffee staining, kneaded erasers, rags for wiping off images, and occasionally pastel, oil or acrylics. Though I prefer my drawings to be clean of special effects, and dislike multi-media as a technical copout, I use it when necessary – specifically to create contrast between forms, to move the narrative, and to play with visual weight. I work large because I like drawing from the shoulder rather than the wrist. I concentrate on one series at a time and work on several pieces when space allows.

4. Is there anything you would like to share as personal interests outside of the studio – outdoor activity, cooking, reading, museum/gallery hopping?
I have an anemic life outside of the studio. My interests are limited to my family, running, reading and listening to audiobooks, watching movies, teaching drawing and theory, and collecting images torn from newspapers.

5. In what way is your work a reflection of “tradition by way of ‘method’”?
What could be more traditional than drawing? But while I like the idea of finished drawings, the best drawings I have seen, the ones that move me, remain in the traditional meaning of drawing – a study for something else, a practice in description, or impression of something, a suggestion. Most drawings, whose surfaces show no fractures, seem self-conscious to me, or overworked and tired looking. I prefer the unfinished to the finished, the underdrawing to the final, the raw to the cooked. Because drawing is so raw, so close to pure idea, so sincere, so linked to both thought and mechanics, it lays bare all kinds of correspondences and emotions. I find it a shame to cover all that up with technical polish.

6. With the examples of your work represented in IDENTITY Insight: Unfolding the Visual Narrative, are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight into your artist vision to a new viewer?
I have been watching my father succumb to Alzheimer’s. These drawings use my father’s and my common memories as a starting point to translate dementia into a drawing method. The frustration of drawing in and erasing out images to fit my narratives mimics what I see happening to my father in his effort to recognize in the moment his own personal narrative and memories.

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“Raking Leaves”, 2016, charcoal, pastel and coffee on prepared paper, 72 x 79″

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“New House”, 2016, charcoal, pastel and coffee on prepared paper, 72″ x 80″

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“Lake”, 2016, charcoal, pastel and coffee on prepared paper, 79″ x 85″

Things That Kill- Kathy Vargas

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #54: Kathy Vargas

1. Are you a full time artist, if not how do you support your art?
I teach full time at the University of the Incarnate Word.

2. When did you consider yourself an artist?
I first considered myself an artist at the age of 5 when I got my first (Diana) camera. I got hooked pretty quickly. My uncle was a photographer in Laredo, Mexico and he’d come visit, Graflex in tow. To this day I use Graflex cameras in addition to the more complete Calumet 4×5.

3. What are your influences?
I’ve traipsed through the entire history of photography, in addition to looking at quite a lot of the contemporary work being made, so pretty much any of that would apply. Specific photographic influences are Hans Bellmer and Joel Peter Witkin for the grotesque; Graciela Iturbide and Julia Margaret Cameron for beauty; Duane Michals and Pedro Meyer for the surreal. However, my imagination is even more easily stirred by literature: almost anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez; Rosario Castellanos’ Balun Canan; Akutagawa’s Cogwheels; Cecile Pineda’s Face and Frieze. Face is particularly relevant to this series.

4. How big is your studio, what kind of lighting?
My 3 bedroom house is my studio, so pretty large. I have two “shooting” rooms: the living room for larger work and a small bedroom for still-life type work. I also have a three room darkroom: one room for printing; one for washing and toning, and one smaller room for drying. I also have a room for painting and framing pieces. Lighting is simple. Usually smaller, simple lights for smaller work and Paul Buff lights when I need to photograph larger or moving subjects.

5. What is a typical day in the studio like for you? Do you listen to music, radio or tv in your studio?
There’s no “typical”. If I’m in the darkroom I listen to music (CDs). If I’m painting I may listen to music or put on a movie. But on certain days the silence is nice too.

6. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?
My preferred medium is photography, but I draw and paint on the photographs, and now I’m even drawing on the negatives by scratching them. I’ve also sewn on photos as well as collaged on them, used gold and silver leaf – whatever fits the theme. I work on several series at a time at the beginning, when I’m trying to decide what to do next. However, usually one idea comes forward; then I work almost exclusively on that series. Sometimes I think I’m done (like with the masks) and go on to another series. Then the previous idea recurs in a new way. That’s happened two or three times.

7. Do you have any special or unique tools, devices or process that you use in your art making?
Not really. I guess most people don’t use 4×5 cameras anymore, so maybe that, but that’s about it.

8. What do you do outside the studio, aside from a job?
I write. I started writing lyrics about three or four years ago, when a friend of mine from the old days (I used to do rock and roll photography) decided to do a solo CD. I asked if I could help with text and he said he’d try me out. We wrote about 19 songs in the space of three months: my words, his music. His CD is called Incantation and I wrote the lyrics for half the songs on it. The videos are all over You Tube. Albert used to be a member of Blue Oyster Cult and recently he rejoined them for a few gigs, during which he performed one of our songs “Ravens”, during his solo spot. One of my favorites from the CD is “Road Show,” which is about MY experiences on the rock road, though they do seem to coincide with Albert’s; I also really love “Ghosts”, “Voyeur”, and “Face in Your Mirror.” “Voyeur” is about photography, as you can tell in the video. “Face in Your Mirror” was inspired by Cecile Pineda’s book, Face. There’s an online review with mentions that Albert and I seem to be in sync, music-wise, and we were under Grammy consideration for all of about five days; we didn’t have a chance though, not up against Keb Mo and Greg Allman. Oh well. In addition to writing with/for Albert, I am working on a novel about rock and roll in the 1970s. That’s great fun.

9. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
My work for “Things That Kill” is pretty much typical of what I do. The subject of these photos, masks, originated with the “Innocent Age” series. The earlier masks depicted “nicknames”/perceptions I heard parents use in addressing their children: gordo/piggy; fool/stupid; monster, etc. I wondered how many times those “nicknames” became self-fulfilling prophesies. It’s bad enough when children are bullied with those names; it must be horrible to hear your parents say them. The later masks have a different slant, not as a direct relation to childhood, but as a consideration of masks worn inwardly while showing a face of normalcy/innocence to the world, specifically the concealed identities of true monsters: terrorists and murderers. How might they look if we could see their anger and hatred when they walked down the street? And so the masks returned as the hidden face of an evil-doer, reversing the usual face/mask relationship: the bland face lies; the mask is the true identity.

10. How did you approach the subject matter?
As a photographer, I need an actual object to photograph. So I’ve been using mostly Halloween masks. I cut them, stretch them, scar them, or otherwise reshape them. The extra texture added during double exposure also altered the original mask, but I want the surface to look fleshy, like skin, to make sure that the human element is read along with the idea of a monster. Recently I’ve begun to add eyes, so that it looks like there’s a person (maybe trapped) in there; I’m working on those now. Haven’t finished any yet.

11. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
I think I’ve pretty much covered that, except to say that next time you hear a report about a shooting, check out the killer’s home life. (Didn’t one of those shooters kill his mother first?) Then go to Walmart, listen to the screaming parents and crying children; check out what the parents are saying to their kids, what they’re calling them. It’ll scare the heck out of you; that lack of sensitivity is one sure way to create a real live monster.

Things That Kill- Joe Crookes

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #27 part 2: Joe Crookes

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1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
Ironworkers do occasionally take calculated risks. Crane operators depend on men with walkie-talkies to guide their blind loads to out of sight “connectors”. It is a little bit
like glass blowers in a hot shop intuitively communicating their precise intentions.

2. How did you approach the subject matter? Prographica4

I often gave the ironworkers heroic pictures of themselves. I let them know that I admired their skill and agility. I kept returning to the rigorous beauty in the large-scale structural ironwork. The strict function of the the design carries with it a strict aesthetic beauty. Even a bolt or nut, a beat up carpenter’s canvas bag have integrated beauty and function.

 

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work  in “Things that Kill”?
Since I was given a hard hat and permission to access all parts of the stadium during the build, I was the ironworkers’ mascot so to speak. I became part of the crew.

Things That Kill- Brian Blackham

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #25 part 2: Brian Blackham

in studio

1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
My painting is of cubes of sugar. The reflection of the theme “Things that Kill” is how the obsession of sugar is killing us. One tasty bite at a time, getting us addicted to the sweet taste of things. Losing the desire to eat anything that doesn’t have sugar in it is taking a toll on us, physically and mentally. This show is inline with the way I think about my work. I approach subject matter for my paintings with the hope of knowing how ‘loaded’ or ‘unloaded’ it will be. Although subject matter is very important, I want the formal elements of painting to be at the forefront when viewing my work.

2. How did you approach the subject matter?
My approach of the subject matter was to try to present it in the same way you would present something special. To give it center stage, and see the beauty of what it is, not what it does.

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
I’m unable to think of anything at this time. I do hope though, that you will become addicted to looking at my work.

Things That Kill- Evelyn Woods

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #9 part 3: Evelyn Woods

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1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
The self portrait “Silence” is a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill” in that if one cannot speak their truth and is forced to stay silent, then that very silence has the ability to kill their spirit which eventually can kill the essence of that individual. Throughout history we have been witness to individuals, groups of people, cultures and even countries who die as a result of forced silence. One has only to remember the Holocaust as an example.

I have done self portraits in the past as an exercise in painting from direct observation never intending them for a show. What better source than your own face. What is revealed in the process of painting can be a surprise even to oneself.

The painting “Twisted #2” was nearly completed before hearing of this show and was in continuation with a series using similar subject material. Its Medusa-­like quality has the effect of something that could kill due to the feelings evoked when looking at the image. After exploring the myth of Medusa, I discovered how she was forced into having a head of writhing snakes as punishment for being a victim of rape. Another example of what happens if one has the courage to speak the truth.

2. How did you approach the subject matter?
In approaching the theme I could not help but think of all the ways things could kill with some obvious ones such as cars, cancer, natural disasters etc… But I decided to take a risk using my own personal history in the form of a self portrait. My dilemma was in painting a visually successful image while within a heavily loaded context.

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
Whether my subject material takes the form of a still life as in previous drawings, or the painting of tree forms as in my latest work, the approach is the same. To paint or draw is a personal exploration of selected subject material. In the end, if successful,the inherent meaning is revealed.