Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Molly Rausch's Postage Stamp Paintings


When it comes to Molly, it was love at first sight – or should I say site?  I discovered her tumblr blog of Postage Stamp Paintings and liked one painting after another after another.  Postage stamps can be works of art in themselves, and Molly reinforces the idea as she expands a stamp’s image out into delicate little watercolors.  Leaving the original, stamp at the center of a painting, now part of an imagined place.

I am quite excited (and even honored) to help facilitate the first showing of Molly’s work in the Bay Area as part of in Collage meets Landscape.  You can get a preview of her work at Postage Stamp Paintings as well as her main website.

The Collage + Landscape = Collagescape will be on view at San Francisco’s Glama-Rama Salon and Gallery at 304 Valencia Street in San Francisco.
The show opens in one week and will be up from July 29 to September 28, 2014 with an opening reception on Friday, August 1 (7pm to 10 pm).
The exhibit will have two components:
On the main level, there will be an exhibit of my new series of work called Collagescapes.
On the upper level of Glama-Rama, I am curating a companion show of mixed media works, where the theme will be Collage meets Landscapes.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Olivia Parkes


Before I introduce the next artist who will be participating in Collage meets Landscape, just a brief word about digital collage (which Olivia does not do). 

I received some very good submissions from artists who do digital work.  Subject, composition, color and execution were all spot on.  But, I had to decline on showing digital work.  I feel that even the best quality digital print, well framed and nicely presented, just can’t be included in a show alongside original works.  I appreciate how the internet has allowed so many more people to have access to any artist’s work.  And many people have even purchased affordable, digital prints of my own work.  That said, digital images and digital prints do not have the same impact or importance as original work.  If the work is from a young, emerging artist or even an art superstar given a massive retrospective in a major museum, it’s still a digital print.

And now, back to Olivia Parkes – digital artists take notice, this is how you get your hands dirty and make a collage – it takes paint, paper, found objects, photography, etc.  Our exhibition space is limited, so this time we can only show one piece of her work.  Olivia splits her time between Berlin and Joshua Tree.  This will be her first showing in the Bay Area and I look forward to seeing a larger show of her work in person.  In the meantime (irony noted) do get a good look at her website for some stunning work.

The Collage + Landscape = Collagescape will be on view at San Francisco’s Glama-Rama Salon and Gallery at 304 Valencia Street in San Francisco.
The show runs from July 29 to September 28, 2014 with an opening reception on Friday, August 1 (7pm to 10 pm).
The exhibit will have two components:
On the main level, there will be an exhibit of my new series of work called Collagescapes.
On the upper level of Glama-Rama, I am curating a companion show of mixed media works, where the theme will be Collage meets Landscapes.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

New Mexico Love Stories


It’s been a while since I have curated a show and 15 years since I have exhibited with Karen.  One of my earliest forays into curation was an installation of four artists in an empty San Francisco Victorian – four rooms/four artists including Karen and myself.  After many years in the City, Karen returned to her home in a small, New Mexico village.  I am pleased to be bringing her work back to San Francisco. 

In spite of any “expert” who declares painting’s demise, Karen’s work is always a reminder that painting is alive and well and here to stay.  She comes from a long line of distinguished painters who capture the New Mexico landscape in a way that only a skilled artist really can.  And while I appreciate and admire photography, New Mexico is usually best rendered in paint.   Karen’s latest series of New Mexico Love Stories reminds me that painting is to photography as poetry is to a guidebook.  

I am delighted that some work from this new series will be included in Collage meets Landscape.



The Collage + Landscape = Collagescape will be on view at San Francisco’s Glama-Rama Salon and Gallery at 304 Valencia Street in San Francisco.
The show runs from July 29 to September 28, 2014 with an opening reception on Friday, August 1 (7pm to 10 pm).
The exhibit will have two components:
On the main level, there will be an exhibit of my new series of work called Collagescapes.

On the upper level of Glama-Rama, I am curating a companion show of mixed media works, where the theme will be Collage meets Landscapes.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Denise Laws


When I decided to include other artists in Collage + Landscape = Collagescape, I had a very general idea of what Collage meets Landscape could mean.  I had some preconceived notions of what type of work I might see submitted.  That said, I wanted to remain open and I wanted to be surprised. 
Denise’s abstract interpretation of landscape using images of human hair was exactly the type of surprise I was hoping for. The use of hair to represent terrain was unexpected, but I was not in the least surprised that Denise came up with the idea.  I always try to stop by when she hosts an open studio – and I know I will see something new and different every time.  Her work constantly evolves and explores new materials and directions.  I am pleased to be able include some of her latest work in our upcoming show.

You can get a preview of more of Denise’s work on her website.


The Collage + Landscape = Collagescape will be on view at San Francisco’s Glama-Rama Salon and Gallery at 304 Valencia Street in San Francisco.
The show runs from July 29 to September 28, 2014 with an opening reception on Friday, August 1 (7pm to 10 pm).
The exhibit will have two components:
On the main level, there will be an exhibit of my new series of work called Collagescapes.
On the upper level of Glama-Rama, I am curating a companion show of mixed media works, where the theme will be Collage meets Landscapes.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Inspired at Stanford

Europe and America 19th Century Gallery, Cantor Arts Center

I always check out the smaller city, less nationally known, art museums when I am on my road trips.  This past week I finally made a long overdue, and first visit, to a museum that’s quite close by.  Stanford University and the Cantor Arts Center is less than an hour away.  I knew the museum was known for its collection of Rodin sculpture (only the Musée Rodin in Paris has a larger collection) but I knew little more about what I would find.  I was surprised at how large and thorough the museum was. Aside from the Rodins, there are not other specific focuses to the collection.  Rather, the museum offers a solid collection of gallery after gallery of different periods and genres.  It doesn’t cover it all, but what it covers, it covers quite well.  And there are some real gems that make the museum worth a visit (a Georgia O’Keefe, David Park and Elmer Bischoff are all worth seeking out).

From a more personal nature, I left the place quite inspired.  I always have liked old-fashioned, salon style displays of walls of art.  And the galleries at the Cantor Arts Center offered some good examples.  This made me think about my current series of Collagescapes.  The most recent ones have been placed in repurposed and antique picture frames (see below).  I envision more and more framed in this way.  I am inspired to fill my own wall salon style with a new series of framed pieces. 


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Pacific Collagescape

Pacific, 24”x24” mixed media on board

This is the biggest piece in the Collagescape series so far.  It seems fitting that it is inspired by the big ocean, the world’s biggest ocean that I live only 4 miles away from.  The nicest way for me to get there is a good long walk through Golden Gate Park with a rewarding arrival at Ocean Beach at the end.  And if I need a reminder, most days a cool breeze kicks in and blows across my neighborhood.  Of course, many days and most summer nights, the ocean wraps my City in cool, gray Pacific fog.  Even if I can’t see the Pacific when I look out my window, I know it’s there.  I can feel it.

Pacific will be included in my Collagescape exhibit opening on July 29.


A print and other merchandise is based on a section of this work and available form Society 6.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Six Millennium of Butter and other things at the Legion of Honor

Mound of Butter, Antoine Vollon

This week it was time to venture out to the Legion of Honor.  It was a nice, quiet afternoon and even the ever-so-hyped-up special show was busy but not unbearably crowded.  That show, Intimate Impressionism from the National Gallery of Art, is a nice, thorough collection of Impressionist treasures from the Smithsonian. I recognized some from prior visits to Washington (see above).  I do love butter, and with Antoine Vollon’s Mound of Butter, what’s not to love? 

I attended the exhibit with a friend who is a member, so we did not need to pay admission.  Another friend pointed out a real issue with this show – as usual, the museum is demanding an extra charge to see a special exhibit.  Museums seem to do this now on a regular basis with their “blockbuster” shows.   They sometimes charge extra even when they show art they own – art from their own collections.  Well in this case, the Legion of Honor is charging the public extra to see art that we own.  The collection of the National Gallery of Art belongs to you, me and every other American.  Admission is free at the Smithsonian because the contents belong to the American people.  Taxpayer dollars and private fundraising keep it that way.  I’ve noticed the price of butter has gone up at every supermarket, but what is happening out in Lincoln Park is simply wrong.

Butter remains a theme at the Legion of Honor (keep reading).  As is often the case, there is a less promoted yet wonderful show hidden upstairs – Masters of Fire: The Copper Age in the Holy Land.  These ancient treasures are aesthetically pleasing and historically interesting, but what I kept telling myself is that they are all about 6,000 years old.  6,000 years old!  Copper, ceramics, carved stone but even scraps of textiles and a pair of sandals. The age and preservation is astounding and mostly because of an inaccessible cave in an extremely dry part of the world.  And yes, butter.  Well not 6,000 years old butter, but ceramic, Chalcolothic butter churns (you can see a few examples here).

Many of the pieces in Master of Fire look strikingly modern.  Some of the zoomorphic ossuaries reminded me of anime characters, much of the copper and stone work could be placed in a display of contemporary art and fool many viewers.  But for me, the star of the show was this little stone carved ram (see below).  Like a direct ancestor of Henry Moore, it’s artistic perfection achieved thousands of years ago.

The Masters of Fire is the first of its kind show in the United States and will be at the Legion of Honor until January 5, 2015 (and you can see it for the regular admission price without an extra fee).