Mar 292024

Richard Serra passed away on Tuesday, 3/26/24. In the video above, as part of PBS News Hour, Serra takes an interviewer on a tour of his 2007 MoMA exhibition, Richard Serra: 40 Years.

The program also provides some background on his history and discusses a bit of his creative process. One technique was to use a list of verb actions. He would choose one from the list and apply that to different materials. He explains in the video how he used “to lift” for a rubber sculpture in the exhibition.

Richard Serra, “Verb List”, 1967 (image via MoMA)

If you are in Los Angeles, one of his most famous sculptures, Band (2006), is currently on view at LACMA. In NYC you can see Equal (2015), which consists of eight forged steel boxes stacked in pairs, at the Museum of Modern Art.

Feb 212023

For Adam Putnam’s recent exhibition Holes at P.P.O.W gallery in New York, he takes the visitor on a multimedia journey into the self.

From P.P.O.W’s press release-

Through the building up of imagery by means of photography, drawing, sculpture, film, and performance, Adam Putnam continues an ongoing exploration of the boundaries between architecture, nature, the physical and the internal self, often using one as a stand in for the other.

A single, hand-carved wooden finger beckons the viewer toward a labyrinth of 365 “visualizations.” Initiated during the long months of lockdown, this mass of miniature drawings takes on an elusive arrangement, like an archaic diagram of the unconscious mind, with patterns emerging and dissolving as the visitor weaves through the space. Accompanying this accumulation are a new series of drawings and photographs, depicting architectural inversions and other implements such as a crumbling brick column and a rusty sword.

The labyrinth ultimately leads to a shadowy monolith vibrating with light, smoke and bubbles. Based on a 2022 site- specific, multi-sensory work commissioned in response to the experiential interests and preferences of a small group of people with Profound Mental and Learning Disabilities (PMLD) living in Midlothian, Scotland, the tower, which can be viewed alternately as a lighthouse, clocktower, steeple and sundial, aims to connect through touch, scent, light and sound. As we enter a post-pandemic world, Holes offers an opportunity for collective experience and contemplation of the otherworldliness imbedded in the everyday.

Putnam’s Instagram is currently private, but you can check out his Tarot influenced artwork here. He was giving Tarot readings throughout the duration of the show using his handmade cards.

Dec 062022

Work by Bobbi Pratte

Work by Bobbi Pratte

This past weekend (12/3/22) was the 6th Annual edition of ArtJones in Gulfport, Florida. The self-guided tour takes you to several locations around Gulfport and is a great way to see what local artists are creating, and sometimes get a look at their process.

Bobbi Pratte just moved to the area from Washington D.C. and had numerous colorful paintings on view.

Work by Brenda McMahon

Work by Brenda McMahon

Brenda McMahon is one of the co-founders of this event. Her ceramic tiles can often be seen outside houses around town. She also created a large piece for the Gulfport Senior Center. Her local gallery shows a variety of regional work and has a featured artist every month.

Work by Nancy Poucher

Work by Nancy Poucher

Nancy Poucher was showing her lovely pastel work, seen above.

Other artists included in the show- Deserie Valloreo (who just opened her own local gallery), Kitty Zehnder, Curtis Whitwam, Charles Bahringer, Judith Villavisanis, Anna Ayres, Marius Wiget, Cynthia Dugat, Doug D’souza, Amy Howell, Denny Howard, Patricia Burrows, Margaret Foy Meinhart, Don Stafford, Pitzen Studios, Kiersty Long, Paula Roy, Ray Domingo (also a founder of the event), Herlys Perez, Dorian Angello, Joyce Burkholder, Janet Folsom, Eric Folsom, and Jessica Ryan (this year’s Larry Enlow Emerging Artist winner).

For more information on the individual artists, check out their links and the ArtJones site, which has little bios as well.

Sep 152022

Above are scenes from Jean-Luc Godard’s 1960 film, Breathless, starring Jean Seberg and Jean-Paul Belmondo.

The first two pictures are from a press conference scene where Seberg’s character asks an author (played by influential director Jean-Pierre Melville) for his “greatest ambition in life” He replies- “To become immortal, and then die”.

Although it was sad to hear of Godard’s passing, he has certainly achieved immortality through his beautiful work.

Aug 192022

Celo, 2015

Celo, 2015 (detail)


The World is Too Much With Us, 2021

The work above is from artist and retired UNC-Asheville Professor of Art Virginia Derryberry. It was part of the 2021 group exhibition FABRICated at Center for Craft. She curated the show with fellow artist Marcia Goldstein, whose work is included along with five emerging artists.

From the Center for Craft’s website-

FABRICated presents an intergenerational look at new boundaries in art and craft through works that merge fiber-based processes with other media, like painting, sculpture, and blacksmithing. Each of the seven artists explores ideas of the body, identity, and their unique, personal stories by using a medium with a rich history of craft. Stitching, in and of itself, is slow and methodical and invites the audience to slow down and look carefully at the physicality of the thread, the textures of the fabric, and the paint and the found objects that are introduced into the mix. The result is an exhibition that questions the nature of what constitutes women’s work, the relationship of fine art and craft, and how these elements can come together to form a new kind of community conversation.

And from Derryberry’s website about her work-

Virginia Derryberry’s current work includes large scale oil on canvas figure paintings along with fabric/costume constructions, that blend narrative elements from mythology and alchemy, the forerunner of modern science. The intent is to suggest multiple interpretations rather than straightforward illustration of a specific narrative. At first glance, it seems that a “real” space is being defined, but in fact, the painted images are constructed from multiple viewpoints and lighting systems. Passages of volumetric rendering set next to more abstract, painterly areas result in the creation of a virtual, shifting world where nothing is quite what it seems.

Jul 012022

Magenta Swimming in Yellow, 2015-7, by Rona Pondick from her solo exhibition at Zevitas Marcus. The sculpture was created using pigmented resin and acrylic.

From the Zevitas Marcus press release

In 2013, Pondick began an intensive period of experimentation with materials that were new to her practice: resins and acrylics. Over a period of five years, she developed complex methods of working with these materials and came to understand their sculptural potential. This exhibition is the first time this body of work has been seen on the West Coast.

Since her career began in 1984, Rona’s work has consistently referenced the body, in both a metaphorical and literal sense. Her sculptural practice has been no less defined by her ceaseless exploration of new materials and methods. Stainless-steel was Rona’s primary medium for the better part of a decade beginning in 1998. Her newest works are made from resins, acrylics and modeling compound.While thematically related to Rona’s earlier work, these new sculptures are notable for their extraordinary use of color and the way in which the artist’s hand is ever present, elements which heighten the sense of fragility and humanity that have always been achingly present in her work.

Also worth checking out- this ODDA magazine interview with the Pondrick from this year (2022) and her Instagram.

Jun 202022

Florida Roadside- Gatorland, 2020

Dusk Pines, 2020 (left) and Pinelands, 2020

Artists Sam McCoy (works above) and Sheherazade Thenard (work below) were both part of the recent exhibition Fresh Squeezed 6: Emerging Artists in Florida at Morean Arts Center in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Information on Sam McCoy from her website

Sam McCoy was born and raised in Orlando, Florida in the 90s. She is a contemporary painter who focuses on the boundaries between natural and hyperreal landscapes of Florida. She pulls her inspirations from a place where spectacles and roadside attractions dominate America’s tourism capital. Between eco-tourism destinations and constructed gardens, McCoy explores the contradictions of her experiences in these places. By pulling back the metaphorical curtain on a carefully crafted image of Florida, McCoy’s ideas of disenchantment and re-enchantment are enacted in each painting. The viewer can still find meaning in the shadier discordant corners of the State.

Magnolia, 2020

From Sheherazade Thenard’s information page

For me, a landscape painting is not merely a visual representation of the world. It is a metaphor for the human condition. I paint to try to make sense of the fragility of our world, the passing of time, and our shared experiences of light, color, and space. The incorporation of figures within my paintings are often swallowed or hidden by their constructed lush surroundings. Painting the land and its inhabitants continues to be a way of engaging with the strangeness of being here.

The undercurrent themes of mysticism, escapism and fantasy are reoccurring within my pieces. Through these works, I aim to create psychological spaces paired with hidden symbolism integral to the understanding of each painting.

Check out both of their websites to see more of their excellent work.

Feb 172022

A Surreal Presence for Every Possible State, 2018 by Kenturah Davis from her 2019 exhibition, Blur in the Interest of Precision at Matthew Brown Los Angeles. The four panel work was created using oil paint applied with rubber stamp letters and graphite grid on embossed Mohachi paper.

From the press release-

Blur in the Interest of Precision is a search for parallel conditions between the poetics of our visual experience and the strangeness of our relationship to language. We often use language to carve out distinctions between one thing and another. Davis’ objective—to complicate ideas about meaning, representation and perception—have found refuge in blur and doubling. The new drawings are rendered with arrangements of text, but the words are virtually illegible. Many of the portraits pursue ideas the artist is working through via the writings of Fred Moten and Toni Morrison’s essay, Sites of Memory.

Davis’ work oscillates between various facets of portraiture and design. Using text as a point of departure, the artist explores the fundamental role that language has in shaping how we understand ourselves and the world around us. This manifests in a variety of forms including drawings, photographs and performances.

Recently Davis was commissioned by LA Metro to create work for the future Inglewood Station, slated to open in November of 2022. The work, Sonder, depicts community members photographed at gatherings at the artist’s Inglewood art studio and made into large porcelain enamel steel panels.

From Metro’s site

The photographs were hand painted with stamps incorporating letters that form the words defining the term “sonder.”

Davis was drawn to the term which alludes to the realization that every person has a unique and significant story. She hopes that the portraits inspire connections between strangers, even if only for a passing moment while waiting for the train.

(images below via LA Metro’s site)

For more images, information about the station, and a video of the artist discussing the work, check out Metro’s website.


Jul 302020

Happy Birthday to Betye Saar who turned 94 today! This work Still Ticking, (2005), was part of LACMA’s exhibition Betye Saar: Call and Response which opened at the museum in September of 2019.

From the wall description of the work-

Made shortly before Saar’s seventy-eighth birthday, the assemblage includes years and astrological glyphs on the inner left side that correlate to various important dates in her life. The work’s title wittily refers both to the timepieces in the sculpture- which, of course, are not ticking; indeed they are either frozen in time or missing their hands- and to the artist herself, who is alive and well, still ticking, now at age ninety-three.