Whatever feels right

December 16, 2008 at 2:28 pm | Posted in Deep thoughts, Music, Life, Art, News, Upcoming Events | 2 Comments
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I have used the same keywords for my alerts since I started this blog, and I almost never see the same blog twice. One that had a nice clean design and a strange image drew me in. It was of a potato with a nail through it, and it was on the LACMA blog, which is called Unframed. Much like Art Basel Miami Beach, MOCA has been in the news, so anything art and LA related in the news stands out to me.

LACMA is an acronym for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. MOCA Los Angeles still manages to fuel speculation in the art world in spite of its current stalemate and the eerie silence on the part of the challenged institution. A blog on the possibility of the museum, discusses the controversial practice of deassession.

papermonster-dirtypilotobama

Art By Paper Monster

Las Vegas doesn’t pop up on my art radar for obvious reasons but today, I did read an article about the revival of a Contemporary Art Center, which, according to the article, Beate Kirmse helped rejuvenate over the past year. I found it a little disturbing that while informational and seemingly positive in its overall efforts, this article by the Las Vegas Sun paints a nice picture, but it doesn’t address the really important issue, which should be the establishment of some measures on her part to make sure that the artists continue to get the recognition they need after her eventual departure. The article closes with her saying, “Maybe I’ll go back to the East Coast.”

I blog a lot about public art and how art can intersect with and uplift metropolitan cities and serve communities, so this article on a public art project that gives young artists a chance to display public art was the subject of an article in the St. Cloud Times website. Just yesterday I blogged about Art with Barack Obama as the subject matter, and it turns out there is a book on the New York Times bestseller list dedicated to illustrations of Barack Obama.

Paper Monster is a graffiti/stencil artist in Los Angeles that is making a name for himself. The tragic beauties in his stylized and crisp designs create interest with their beauty, but you can’t stop staring because of the amazing colors and layered compositions he creates in various types of media. He has some Obama art on his website too.



Sometimes I just happen to stumble upon the most random blogs, only to be completely arrested by a beautiful image that I have to mention. You don’t need to be a fancy art blog or a big topic to be worthy of mention.

There is a lot of strange and beatiful things hidden in the strangest of places and I’ve developed a little knack for digging them up. This blogger Karl Jones has been blogging since before blogging was cool, I don’t know how well-known he is because I am new to online publishing but this guy knows what he likes. I dig his blog because its a funky mix of cool tidbits and his really cool digital designs that he makes into computer desktop wallpapers.

Art by Karl Jones

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Not PC is another blog that is not an art blog but has something out of the ordinary that got my attention because it had something interesting or useful about art in it. In this case, it was a venture into art & perception. I’ll be honest with you, my dear reader, I really don’t understand what his blog/mission is about. I wanted to include a short description in my mention of it but I am kinda stumped. Maybe you can figure it out. Its definitely not an art blog.


From the beginning, I had so much to say about the whole experience of diving into a relationship that went further than your casual observer with some of the most offbeat artists in the city. I’m never satisfied when obvious perks like wanting free videography or an attractive host might be yours as a result of my meeting and working with you. Sure, those things are tempting for an artist, but for me, I am making art. So I am thinking about other things too.

Its taken a lot of flexibility and patience as well as simple tact to get through some of these situations. I do know that artists are also busy making their own art, and it is somewhat of a stretch for them to give me yet another part of themselves and experience for the art I want to make. But it wouldn’t be the SEA SHOW without it. I am enamoured with the artists I have worked with from the beginning and who I continue to meet. To me, they are important.

The fact that the copius excitement that ensues with creative and intellectual interchanges occur is just icing on the cake. There really is a lot of potential, and its what’s really fueled my commitment whenever there have been challenges this past year and a half.

When I am in SF next month I’ll likely ponder these concepts and more in the Art of Participation exhibit at the SF MOMA.

Without speaking directly to circumstances, I am working hard to balance sensible thinking with my warm affection for the work and life of an artist. I think part of the constant challenge is finding that place where an artist can really step outside of his or her work, so that it can be elevated, heightened in a new way. This could be a flagrantly selfish pursuit, but I sacrifice and give so much that this is far too simplistic an observation or what motivates me. I suppose if you knew me personally, my motivations might make more sense. I know artists understand and like it, and as long as that is happening, The SEA SHOW must go on.

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Cover Me : Wrapup of Art Basel Miami Beach 2008

December 10, 2008 at 2:01 pm | Posted in Miami Art Basel, Music, Life, Art, News | Leave a comment
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I hope that I attract a wide variety of art lovers with many differing tastes, who all find enjoyment in the semi-coherent chatter I publish daily. I know a lot of you read or have visited many of the majoy art sites, I hope I can give you something new in the little goodies I find on the web. I don’t remember if I was doing a google image search or what, but this site was kinda cool. I’m not sure what the criteria is to make it on this virtual map, but it might be useful to some. You click on the little tags and it will tell you about current shows that are going on all over the US. I have heard about the Eventful website in the past, but I was surprised when one of my image searches led me to this website, which listed a lot of current art events in and around Miami and Palm Beach, which I just discovered is home to yet another sumptuous art gathering, the Palm Beach Contemporary Art Fair.

palm-beachGoogle Earth Image of Palm Beach

In the past, I have known people who have been proponents on culling the less than intelligent portion of the population. Such an attitude is not going to win you followers! Better yet, lets raise the bar for readers and other art bloggers. Out of left field, came one of the most comprehensive and meaningful bits of writing about the week at Art Basel came across my virtual desk. While I had to wonder what might have motivated this well-thought out piece of writing, I had to appreciate it. I am blogging on a subject that is relatively new to me so I enjoyed this as I would a fresh Braeburn apple, and I savored every bite. Either I am not searching in the right places, because there are some art bloggers are offering us something more substantial than tasty but unfulfilling art hors d’oeuvres. Your humble host included. :-p Who know that men.style.com would have one the best blog entries on art basel miami beach I have read all week. This guy doesn’t mince any words, and his entry is humorous and well-written. Loved it.

In my wanderings along the shore, I overturned a stone and discovered this contemporary art blog. Another facet, how interesting. This person is a speculative collector, and unfortunately, he only updates his blog once a month. I’d like to see more.  Art as Authority is another obscure blog that caught my attention, but sadly, this one isn’t updated much either. Looks funky, check it out.

I stumbled upon Wynnwood Art Magazine today, it offered a neutral rundown of events, decorated with praise for this annual fair. I learned something else new today. Having lived in San Francisco for six years, I remember seeing a lot of guerilla marketing. When I was younger I didn’t know how to discern between public art and advertising, I guess you won’t know unless you know who created the images. I saw a lot of stickers and spray painting in random places of an image inside a star, and one word: OBEY. He likes to party down with SuperTouch Art. Slowly, the peices of the puzzle are coming together. Digging around for images of the OBEY public art, I stumbled upon this pretty cool blog on public/street art with tons of cool photos – Global Graphica. GraffHead is of a similar vein, but this blog covers other topics, like fashion and music. Hey, this is fun!

This blog and foray into art has been a learning process, and I’ve blogged a few times about Street Art, because its the sort of emerging art form we enjoy. This entry didn’t clarify anything about the subject for me, so I’ll have to keep my eyes and ears open. In my image searches I find pretty cool things too that were related to Art Basel Miami Beach, like this photojournalist’s blog, Digital Light. There is something very immediately engaging about his pictures. I wonder if he ever attended Miami Art Basel.  Check out his blog.

obeybillboard_6 Photo from GraffHead

During the week, the daily blog is a bit of a production, it can take an hour and that’s if I’m not distracted by 20 different things and even more alerts that come in as I write. I’ll be sitting there doing my daily blog, and my blackberry will start buzzing, and 3 out of 5 times its some news alert that has to do with art or basel or contemporary something or other. Or as in the case tonight, I am capturing video for my next vlog and I’m trying not to get off track.  This will be a 2 blog day, since the vlog is the hot new thing. And we’re hot, so of course we will vlog.

Meaningfully. On things other than Miami Art Basel. In the next post.

So yes, I’ve been sick as a dog for three days straight and have blogged daily. Being hungover/tired is no excuse either. I am dedicated! :-> Now this new post on the Soul of Miami website has an event that might offer up some more substantial fare. Then I read the tag words “high-profile”, “VIP”, and “Exclusive” on its website as it describes it attendees and events, and I fear this is just a tiny art predator in the making. The Palm Beach fair has been around 12 years, and this is the first I’ve heard of it. I learn something new every day! This fair focuses primarily on Miami and New York collectors and artists, as well as some international exhibitors. I only saw two galleries from Santa Fe, a a few from California even represented in their list. The Northwest did not make it onto their radar. Perhaps we can help remedy that!

Before you mistake me, and wonder why I am championing the cause of art in the west, let me say that while I have spent the majority of my life on the east coast, I focus on artists on the west as a theme for pioneering, and now expand that to any coastal city near water or a beach. SEA SHOW is about the confluence of art & life, art & the myriad things that form modern life, and the beauty that ensues when those elements combine. It contributes to my happiness immensely!

Day Three: Art Basel Miami Vice

December 6, 2008 at 12:42 pm | Posted in Miami Art Basel, Music, Life, Art, News, Upcoming Events | Leave a comment
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There was not as much Art Basel action for you, maybe all the private parties start now, and there will be less public events, or everyone is too hungover to keep up with the reporting  while they’re enjoying the week at Miami Art Basel.

Art Observed is a sleek art blog that got my attention today with its clean commentary and pics. Another New York site is getting my notice as well for its nice photos and tasteful coverage. I am assuming my discerning art readers know or visit most of the links I include.

Contemporary Art is often colorful, and I like virtually strolling through the galleries with nice slideshows of the event I happen to stumble onto.

Despite gloomy predications, this article on ArtInfo gives the impression that sales are steady at Art Basel Miami Beach. Why anyone would be surprised that die hard collectors would be the last to pass on this opportunity to get valuable art with fewer buyers to drive up the price is beyond me. Even if you don’t follow art news, its no secret that art is still a solid investment. On the other hand, an entry in the Miami Herald downplays the brou haha and one of its articles focuses on the subdued sales at Art Basel Miami Beach 2008.

Like so many arts, the events and news are open to interpretation, and the week isn’t over yet. I can’t say that I have a ton of experience with reporting on large art fairs, but I try my best. I can only pray that my wit and charm carry me through it gracefully.

I’ve been seeing and hearing a lot in the press about design and Art. If you’re in the hip locale of Dubai, then you will want to visit this opening. Fans of Hans Jean Arp that can make it to France this month can enjoy the opening of his work in Strausberg, which will have over 180 peices on display.

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Art by Hans Jean Arp


Pakistan has got an artist whose work I really enjoy, Mashkoor Raza reminds me of an artist who explores similar concepts like power and whose art work also has a lot of nudes, Seattle’s own Dr. JohnnyWOW!. In China, the alarm is more pronounced, and the situation for contemporary art looks bleak, at least for the bad artists, according to this article.

It might be a week-long hangover for many attendees, but its important to get around, talk to people, and really try to make something out of the week. Tomorrow is the mid-point, so it’ll be interesting to read and report on the commentary at days’ end.

I would be most impressed if one day the art world hosted a roundtable, for dealing with all the uncertainty, questions, and disputes in the art world. Drama is definitely good, but to what point? Maybe some like to end their year with a kick. I for one, wish for nothing more than quietude during this time of year. I want to experience nature and absorb everything that’s happening. I’ve split my time between two states for over a year and sometimes I just wish the world would slow down for me. My growth depends on reflection and thought, not just action. I want to enjoy art, not just mechanilly produce it. I love this project, and some of the most blissful moments I have had, we doing just this. Living the Arte Vivant, full of vigor and a open vision of a bright future, optimistic for the future of art, and the importance of the supporting deserving artists.

Like so many random artists I find and think would be perfect for the show, PosterBoy is your odd pick of the day. Pretty cool public/underground art.

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Art by Poster Boy

It seems like there’s always a new twist in the discussion over the fate of MOCA, a Contemporary Art museum whose fate and challenges are the concern of one of the largest metropolitan communities in the nation, that of Los Angeles.

I will have to report on the art show I took part in/filmed Thursday at the Seattle Artwalk in another post since this is devoted to one of the biggest events in the American Art scene, Art Basel Miami Beach. If you can’t make it to Miami this year, but happen to be in Quebec, you can check out this exhibit at an opening of Contemporary Art.

Art Antics

November 30, 2008 at 10:19 am | Posted in Miami Art Basel, Music, Life, Art, News | Leave a comment
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All sorts of interesting things come across my desk every day. Using simple search terms nets me stranger results.

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You can be sure that an expansive display of modern art will be on view at the new MOMEMA (Museum of Middle East Modern Art). With a 50 billion dollar price tag, you know that this imminent destination will draw art lovers from all over the world.

This will definitely be a hub of action once its completed during the annual Art Dubai Festival. Think of Miami beach and add a large helping of Arab culture, and you have an awesome event that draws galleries from Brussells to Mumbai.

Despite the political tension artists experience, new trends in art has been quietly unfurling in the middle east. Just this year, records were broken in Contemporary Art sales in the Middle East. Its clear there is a market for Arabic and art work in the East if you read what is said about collector’s interest the Iranian and Middle Eastern Art for sale on the Christie’s website. Traditional Muslim visual design shuns iconography, so these guys were making modern paintings and developing fanciful calligraphy centuries before the west gave up its perpetual affair with the human figure.

Mumbai was also in art news this week, a planned show of some art from Poland was canceled at the last minute due to recent events there.

If you visit us daily and read are news from all over the web, you might be interested in a new podcast by the Art Institute on Curating. Contemporary artists can learn what curators are looking for, so this is a great resource for you up and coming artist or for anyone that is curious about Modern Art and curating.

Fresh off the presses today, is a new show in Pittsburgh. The antics of The Yes Men, as they are known, were jacques2previously unknown to your author. My interested has definitely been piqued. I can’t think of a better example of behavior that the viewer finds a challenge to interpret as art. These guys force you to think, and its great. It will be thie first exhibition and I wish I were there to see it.

This artist is misunderstood as well. While The Yes Men intentionally pull off stunts that border on being legal, The work of artist Sheryl Luxenburg was called into question is created with a technique where she uses dots of transparent color, has created unexpected problems for her, because she used photographs as models for her paintings.

Get the latest on what’s not happening with MOCA Los Angeles here.

Since we’re always concerned with one of the greatest challenges to emerging arts, with is financial resources, this commentary is of importance, the value and sales of Contemporary Art are the subject of this Australian Publications article posted on November 29, 2008.

A small city in Florida named Lucie has suffered some budget cuts and its public art program is suffering as a result. I wonder how many situations like this could benefit the rest of the state if there was a special art tax so that entire state can benefit even more from the event that it hosts every year, Art Basel Miami Beach.

In Irish art news, the Museum of Modern Art in Glasgow is going to see some changes in its collection, thanks to a$1 prize from Art Fund International. Modern and diverse works will be represented, including the Palestinian themed art by Emily Jacir.

Basel who?

November 24, 2008 at 9:51 am | Posted in Deep thoughts | 1 Comment
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So every since about a year ago, when I naive and wandering confidently into this art fracas, I wanted to seek out the best opportunity for the artists I work with. In earnest, I began some research into the “Contemporary” Art world. Its not modern art people, that term is SO 90s.

Last December, the Smithsonian Magazine ran an interesting article about this event. It looked titillating, and a perfect opportunity to showcase my voice. Wanting to give the underrepresented artists I have been working with this past year, I was intrigued when I read about Miami Art Basel in the December issue. After reading the article, I had the impression that it was a hub of excitement and opportunity for cutting edge artists, since its a show featuring Contemporary Art.

When I saw that 3 billion dollars of art changes hands in the bacchanal that is Miami Art Basel 2008, I thought, now here is an opportunity to express some amazing art to the world. I have had boundless success in finding artists, having shows, networking, etc. Why should this be any different?

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I posted on craigslist because I knew there had to be some local artists that had participated in this or knew someone that had. A helpful soul offered up some advice, that there’s no chance of exhibiting at Basel if you hadn’t had a national show at a respected gallery. My heart sank when I read his letter, and it opened my eyes.

Granted, Seattle is not exactly a hub of art, as I so naively described a year ago, but artists, and the future of art thrives here. When I moved here, I was cool enough to make friends as a Seattelite but I specifically came here for its low rent, small town ways. Seattle in 2003 was still pretty cool, a cheap place to live, and the arts and music thriving.

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In the few short years that I have lived here, we’ve had construction that is on par with the sort of development you would feel in a third world country, rents have skyrocketed, and our state budget now has a 5 billion dollar shortfall.

Artists I know and work with personally are literally on the edge in so many ways. I wonder what will happen to 619 western when the lease runs out in 2012? Life in Seattle is a rude awakening. Grey weather, heavy traffic, commercialism, a cold and indifferent air in the society, we face the cold harsh reality of the struggle of art daily.

Why is so hard for people to forget the stark picture of the artist who had to reuse canvases in order to paint? An an early artist Picasso and many of his friends I’m sure racked up enormous debt to local merchants so that they could spend all their spare time and energy as artists. That’s the struggle and the beauty that this early was imbued with. Art that is now priceless, is much more so because of the artist’s struggle to create that they experience in the context of their everyday creation.

Here is the roundup of breaking news from what I have recieved in the past 48 hours about Art Basel 2008 Miami Beach and related events, some of which look very promising for us aspiring art beings who can only dream of participating in such an exclusive event. There are some, who like many in Seattle, have no comment about the whole art situation.

Here is an article that talks about how you can see underrepresented artists in the nearby art quarter, Lincoln Avenue, who galleries are surely seeing more discerning art figures than we could ask for in our art-challenged city.

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Soul of Miami website has info on the Green Art Fair. Being eco-friendly is all the rage so its important to keep this event going.

A gallery from the United Arab Emirates will be featured at Art Basel, they sound like a gallery that’s doing work in their community aside from art shows so here is to them.

The New York Magazine promises a more restrained event this year, further strengthening evidence for this annual event’s voluptuary nature.

Its wonderful that art still has so much potential and relevance in today’s society. My passion, lies, however, in the creative person that thrives on instinct, whose need to create is irresistible, whose joy in expression I take such delight in. While I love the art world and all it represents, my motivating force is a powerful need to do what’s right and help creative souls. I admire the beauty and strangeness of thier efforts to live the art life (arte vivant) however possible, and what little I may contribute I hope only adds to the wonder of that experience.

Here is to the arts.

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