ICEBERGER - STUDIO GALLERY - VARNISH FINE ART
2ND FLOOR PROJECTS - WHITE WALLS
(with assistance from Jessica Whiteside and Libby Nicholaou)
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Studio Gallery: Chiami Sekine - New Paintings.
Review and photos by Jessica Whiteside: Chiami's ultra-feminine works range in subject matter from images of retro Barbie dolls, puppies, and birds to abstract pieces. The work has that "How did she achieve that look?" quality about it. If an artist can create works using techniques that entice viewers to wonder how they're done, to me, that is a mark of a good artist. Chiami explains to me how she likes to experiment with different techniques and media. Her work is always beautifully composed and often uses soft pastel colors which is why I consider it to be ultra-feminine.
The Studio Gallery is one of my favorite galleries to visit because the work shown is quality, reasonably priced, and often small so it easily fits into tiny San Francisco apartments! Not to mention Rav and Jenn, the owners, are the friendliest and most welcoming people. Get by there when you can before Chiami's works are all sold out!
Paintings by Chiami Sekine. Chiami Sekine - art. Art. Art.
Paintings by Chiami Sekine.
Chiami Sekine - art.
Varnish Fine Art: 5 Year Anniversary Show.
Artists: Jennybird Alcantara, Chris Anthony, AttaBoy, Beth Bojarski, Chris Buzelli, Benjamin Carpenter, Vance Cearly, Elizabeth Dante, Albert Dicruttalo, Ron English, Kevin Evans, Jose Fernandez, Kate Garner, Ron Garrigues, Charles Glaubitz, Nemo Gould, Ben Harris, Archie Held, Al Honig, Carlos Huante, Grant Irish, Jordin Isip, Jung Han Kim, Craig LaRotonda, Sharon Leong, JP Long, Michael Maes, Chris Mars, Pierre Merkl III, Stephanie Morgan, Skot Olsen, Kevin Peterson, Rob Racine, Karl Reichley, Dan Romo, Reuben Rude, KRK Ryden, Isabel Samaras, Kristen Sard, Wayne Shaffer, Dylan Sisson, Winston Smith, Kerri Stephens, The Oyster Pirate Workshop, Thomas Wargin, Robert Work.
Review by Libby Nicholaou: Celebrating their fifth anniversary, Varnish Fine Art's exhibit highlights a wide variety of works with no more than one piece by the same artist. Many are surrealist in nature, all well rendered and with hints of classic style. It seems Varnish focuses on surrealist artists who drop the pop and lean towards Gothic, Renaissance, and/or Elizabethan periods. Some interesting sculptures also-- one in particular of a person with elongated legs made out of smoothly crafted crutches. A substantial turnout by 8 pm, and this is only the beginning.
Art. Art. Art (kinda like it). From above. From the front. Looking in. Art. Art. Art - tunes. Beginning to get crowded. Fire sculpture out front.
Art (kinda like it).
From the front.
Art - tunes.
Beginning to get crowded.
Fire sculpture out front.
Iceberger Gallery: Nick Meyer - Green River.
Comment by AB: Nick Meyer tells me he shot the majority of the photos in this show back east-- thoughtfully composed recreational slice-of-life images recount ordinary people doing ordinary things. But wait; there's more. The photographs are only $50 each-- take your pick. Exceptional buy.
Photography by Nick Meyer. Photographs. Nick Meyer. Photos. Photographs. Photography. Out looking in.
Photography by Nick Meyer.
Out looking in.
[2nd floor projects]: Nao Bustamante - Earth People 2507.
Comment by AB: Nao Bustamante tells me her video, Earth People 2507, is destined for eternal preservation deep inside Iron Mountain in Upstate New York, "a high security, underground, and climate controlled facility protecting against natural disasters and human threats." The video's phantasmagoric plotline, intended to be watched by audiences 500 years from now, stars Bustamante's miniature poodle dressed as a buffalo (commonly referred to as a pooffalo).
As if that's not enough, there's momentous news to report. For the first time in San Francisco Art Openings' five year history covering thousands of shows, an artist agrees to be photographed while lying on the floor (with two of her friends, I might add). Over the years, I've asked a number of artists to lie on the floor and be photographed-- always for good reason and always related to their shows-- and 100% of the time, they've refused. It got to the point where I'd wonder to myself, "Self, what is it about artists and floors?" Well thanks to Nao Bustamante, I wonder no more.
Woah! Hold everything. I've just been informed by a loyal reader that I photographed an artist (Oliver Halsman Rosenberg) lying on the floor in 2005. Click here to see the evidence. But this wasn't Halsman's show; it was Ara Peterson's show at Ratio 3 Gallery. And he was already lying on the floor; I didn't ask him to lie on the floor. Hmmm. I'll have to go to the judges for a ruling on this...
OK. I'm back. According to the judges, photographing an artist already lying on the floor at another artist's show is not the same as photographing an artist who has been asked to lie on the floor at his or her own show. As such, they're upholding the ruling that Nao Bustamante retains her title and all incumbent rights and priveleges associated thereof. Oh... almost forgot... check out her video at the gallery; it's a good one.
What it is (Nao Bustamante, center). Video art by Nao Bustamante. Video art. Video art. Video art. Video art. Nao Bustamante and her canine film star.
What it is (Nao Bustamante, center).
Video art by Nao Bustamante.
Nao Bustamante and her canine film star.
White Walls Gallery: Greg Lamarche - Things I Picked Up Along the Way.
Review by Libby Nicholaou: Greg Lamarche presents two bodies of work in this exhibit, both referencing graffiti with collage. One wall holds mini collages that replicate graffiti tags, looking from a distance as though they were written and accented fast with wide-tipped markers. In reality these are collages, created with paper cut in the shapes of tags one might see on the side of a building, train, tunnel, etc. The rest of the gallery contains small to large pieces made using old fonts and vintage paper, all in bright colors. These pieces resemble the time when graffiti was just emerging but created with more detailed attention. Talking with Gregg about the show, he focuses on how his art is more about the process and less about the money.
Comment by AB: I see Lamarche as a "crossover" artist, meaning an artist whose art transcends its urban roots, and could show and sell at pretty much any gallery anywhere. This time around, in addition to his signature meticulous meta-accurate collages, he shows a series of paper cut-outs of his graffiti tag, SP.ONE, which represent some of the better efforts I've seen to elucidate the art of the idiom. Collages average $1500-$2000; cut paper tags are enticingly affordable at $250-$520.
Collages by Greg Lamarche. Close-up of far left collage in above image. Collage. Collage. Collage. Cut paper by Greg Lamarche. Cut paper closer. Cut paper closer. Cut paper tag art.
Collages by Greg Lamarche.
Close-up of far left collage in above image.
Cut paper by Greg Lamarche.
Cut paper closer.
Cut paper closer.
Cut paper tag art.