Art

  • Images from Paul Bowen’s Wood Light at The Putney School

    In Art, Artist, Exhibition, Installation, Sculpture on

    I was fortunate to catch the last day of Paul Bowen’s exquisite, yet bold and expansive, wood sculpture show last week.  I’ve known Paul since 1995.  I was a fellow at The Fine Arts Work Center, where Paul served as visual coordinator.  I remember being immediately drawn to his sculptures.  He is a generation or two older than I am.  As both of us grew up in foreign countries and became sculptors after working with paintings, I feel an affinity to his path as an artist.  He generously accepts nature, history and the physicality of found materials in seeing through an essence that conveys what it is to live.  The human quality he assembles through his practice  shines with the dignity and gracefulness of a survivor.  When he came into the building to take down the show, he saw me and broke into a big smile.  I was as happy to see him as seeing his fantastic show.  We confirmed the passage of time in how we both aged.  We laughed together.   It always warms my heart to feel connected to someone through art.

  • The Utility Banquet at David Weeks Studio

    In Art, Exhibition, News, Sculpture on

    I used to paint with electric drills. I didn’t actually apply paint with drills, but I used various drill bits to make patterns and marks on the work surfaces. Initially I was switching the bits on a single drill, but soon I started to use two drills, three drills and I ended up having a dozen of them on my work table. Eventually, I made a cart with drill holders and a vacuum. The set-up allowed me to be quite intuitive in handling the tools.
    The cart—complete with 12 electric drills, vacuum, dozens of drill bit (many are modified), and home made tar paint—is on view at an exhibition titled Utility Banquet, curated by Rodger Stevens and David Weeks at David Weeks Studio at 38 Walker Street, New York City.
    You will see custom made art making tools by artists. The show is up until August 23, 2019.

    Here are some of the pieces worked on with the drill cart.

  • HERE + NOW at Pablo’s Birthday

    One of my pieces is in a group show at Pablo’s Birthday, NYC.  Please read what the show is all about below.

    #53, 2005-08, ENAMEL, OIL, PLASTER, TAR AND WAX, 96 DIAMETER X 37 CM, 38 DIAMETER X 14.5 IN

    From Pablo’s Birthday and OFFICE IMPART:

    “Press release

    HERE + NOW

    Exhibition dates: June 26th – July 3rd, 2019

    Press preview: Wednesday, June 26th, 5-7pm

    Opening reception: Thursday, June 27th, 6-9pm

    Pablo’s Birthday and OFFICE IMPART are pleased to present “HERE+NOW”, a 7-day exhibition project which aims to raise awareness about how today’s digital age is changing the traditional art gallery model with the increase of online platforms or other examples of digital presence within the arts.

    Following a conviction in the necessity to create new collaborative models, a selection of the most distinguished online art platforms currently operating in the market have been invited to showcase their artists at Pablo’s Birthday gallery space.

    Participating platforms: Daily Collector, Isthisit?, This Ain’t Art School, ARTPIQ, hiato projects, AXS Art, Freud Monk Gallery will present compelling works as well as a selection of events which will revolve around this topic, “the new digital era”. We are pleased to announce ARTLAND, Daily Plinth and New Art Academy as our media partners. ARTLAND will create and provide a virtual 3D tour of the exhibition, Daily Plinth will showcase a selection of video vignettes from the project, and New Art Academy will include the digital art exhibited in their newborn marketplace for digital art.

    Full list of participant platforms and artists includes: ISTHISIT?,  Stine Deja (London, UK)  and Joshua Citarella (New York, US); Daily Collector, Jenny Brosinski (Berlin, Germany) and Jonathan Todryk (Dallas, US); ARTPIQ, Sooyoung Chung (Seoul, South Korea) and Ant Hamlyn (Northampton, UK);  hiato projects, Paul Weiner (Denver, US) and Irati Inoriza (Balmaseda, Spain), THIS AIN´T ART SCHOOL, Anna Ehrenstein (Tirana, Berlin) and Tara Wray (Kansas, US); AXSART, Tahnee Lonsdale (West Sussex, UK) and Lisette van Hoogenhuyze (The Hague, Netherlands); Freud Monk Gallery, Johan Deckmann (Copenhagen, Denmark)  and Hiroyuki Hamada (New York, US); OFFICE IMPART, Hannah Sophie Dunkelberg (Berlin, Germany) and Tristan Schulze (Leipzig, Germany); and PABLO’S BIRTHDAY with Carla Gannis (Oxford, US) and Liz Naiden (New York, US).

    Recently new innovative models have arisen that look on how to mediate art today. It is a reaction to the changing society due to new technologies, more possibilities, and a broader visual art market. The art scene opens up and is trying to reach a wider audience. The next generation is eager to try out new, more contemporary solutions that are fun, in demand for different formats and other means to present art.

    We are interested in the diversity that new mediums present for showing art, through online galleries, pop-ups, social media based platforms exposing and gathering artists, and young emerging galleries that are vivid, hybrid and engage in this new online-based trend.

    How do these different models work, what are their aims, what drives them? This is what we want to ask. How do these new models change and adapt to the art world? What happens with the reception of art? How and where to reach an audience in the digital era?

    We believe in collaboration and want to group these new ways and create a vibrant exchange by opening a space for it. For one week a group show will develop with a range of diverse players and will be completed by a dynamic program of discussions, performance, and thematization of these changes in the art world.”

    You can see images of the pieces in the show at Pablo’s Birthday website.

  • Full Moon View at The Arts Center at Duck Creek

    Friends,
    My painting show at The Arts Center at Duck Creek will be open until 9pm on the next full moon night, June 17th—rain or shine. Bring your friends and family and watch as the dark blue night transforms the warm glow of the historic barn.

    Hot tea and sweets will be served.

    11-9pm on Monday, June 17, 2019

    Regular hour: 11-6pm, Thursday-Monday and by appointment through June 23rd 2019

  • Images from The Arts Center at Duck Creek Show

    Here are some images from my painting show at The Arts Center at Duck Creek.

    The show is open Thursday-Monday, 11-6pm or by appointment, until June 23rd, 2019.

    There are no photos with those IDs or post 6320 does not have any attached images!
  • Preview of Arts Center at Duck Creek show

    In Art, Artist, Exhibition, Installation, Painting on

    My show at Arts Center at Duck Creek opens tomorrow. I’m truly mesmerized by the warm, rustic aura of the space. The raw dynamics of wooden structural members holding each other to become a monumental shelter conveys a timeless notion of a gathering place for the people. It is a perfect place for my paintings to tell their stories of being human and what it is to live. I’m truly grateful for the wisdom of the community members to transform the space for arts, community dialogues, music and much more.

    We will have an extended opening 5 to 8 tomorrow, June 1st. The Arts Center will have some food, I will make some sushi roles, and my wife is going to bake cookies.

    The show will be open Thursday to Monday 11-6pm and by appointment through June 23rd.

    As I said I will be at the Arts Center most of the time. Looking forward see some of you there!

  • Painting Show at Arts Center at Duck Creek

    In Art, Artist, Exhibition, News, Painting on

    Friends,
    I’m very excited and happy to announce that my paintings will be at one of the most beautiful art venues in the region, Arts Center at Duck Creek (127 Squaw Road, East Hampton), from June 1st through June 23rd.The opening reception is June 1 from 5-7.

    The work shown will be selected paintings from 2013 to 2018. 5 years worth of struggle, surprise, revelation, joy, heartbreak and achievement will be on view at the splendid 19th century barn.

    I have lived in the area for over 20 years. Unfortunately, I often realize that I barely know many people who are supportive of arts in my own community. I will be gallery-sitting through most of the duration of the show, Thursday to Monday, 11 to 6. Please come say hi. Please spread the words, invite your friends and family members to see the show. I ‘ll be very happy to meet you and chat.

     

  • Freud Monk Gallery Interview

    by Adam Reid Fox

    March 18, 2019

    To begin, could you tell me a little about yourself and your background?

    I grew up in Japan till I was 18. My family came to the States in the late 80s because of my father’s job. So I’ve been exposed to different sets of values, beliefs and norms from two different countries. This has been very helpful in constructing my world view from my own perspective as well as steering my path into my studio practice in art.

    Describe your journey to becoming, (or identifying as) an artist. Has it been easy? Natural? What has been difficult?

    When I went to college my initial interest was in psychology. I think I wanted to find out who we are as a species after learning that prevalent angles in one culture are not necessarily valid in others. Then I took some elective courses in art and one of the art teachers, Karl Jacobson, showed me how visual language can let us speak to each other despite our cultural boundaries. This really shocked me and moved me. It was profound and surprising. I eventually changed my major and started to spend all my time in making art. Looking back it was perhaps natural in a way since as a child I was always making things and drawing. But I really didn’t grow up with art and becoming an artist was not something I would do. I think being displaced and being forced to reexamine my identity somehow freed me in that regard.

    How would you describe your work to someone?

    I describe materials, physical attributes and so on a little, and I usually end up saying that you have to see it. I like an element of the unknown to play a good part in the work so it is difficult to verbalize it.

    What is important for viewers to note when viewing your work?

    I would like them to know that all viewers are invited to appreciate my work. I understand that we don’t share the same background and we have different ways of perceiving things. And I would like to know what they think of them and how they feel about them.

    What is your process like? How important is process in understanding your work?

    The core process seems to be brainstorming through drawing. Basic ideas emerge from it. Some of them become sculptures and others become prints. Paintings follow a different process. I usually go right in without preconceived ideas. I rely on visual elements appearing on the surface to guide the overall dynamics. It can be a very thrilling process with surprises and dramas, and it can also be very meditative and liberating. And all my work, including sculptures and prints, involve this process of examining dynamics within the work—I want all elements to play necessary rolls to compose the profound wholeness.

    I like hearing about artists’ process, but other than that, I don’t know if knowing the process would facilitate the understanding… Also, the process is hardly formulated…it’s very bumpy and often tortuously long and frustrating. But sometimes it goes very smooth. Come to think of it, there might be some keys in understanding the particular work in its particular process…

    But basically making process to me is about observing and letting the elements speak as they form relationships among themselves. So any preconceived formula, rule and so on can be very much hazardous, as much as instructive, as they can get in the way of new discoveries.

    I’m interested to know how you arrived at your choice of process, materials, and ‘style?’ How did this develop?

    Those things are developed by the path of my studio practice. One thing leads to another, I digest the process, and it gives birth to more paths and options, and after awhile I have ended up with a trajectory with certain materials, process and “style”. It all happens in an intermingling dynamic of various elements though. It’s hard to pin point a cause and the effect when I’m in the middle of processing multiple phenomenons on multiple dimensions. A lot of things happen intuitively. I do stop and contemplate here and there, but after all it seems that those things are determined by the works themselves.

    What does your work aim to say?

    Each piece is different so I can’t generalize too much, but I’m very much fascinated by the mode of communication through arts. I think a successful art work allows us to convey a genuine experience without truncating details when it takes us over and flourishes in our hearts. You can live a moment with its infinite connection to ourselves and our environment. And sometimes you can share the experience with others too. I think this is particularly meaningful in a highly authoritarian society, like ours, that systematically and structurally truncates our connections to self, others, matters and environment by limiting them to quantifiable commodities. It is extraordinary that such a trajectory has deprived us of our ability to sense the risks of environmental destruction, nuclear threat and so on. But art can somehow give us a common ground to stand on. I don’t claim this to solve anything, give us a revelation of our time or anything like that, but it is still a profound fact that we have this gift of our life that defies certain obstacles among us for a moment.

    Can you highlight some of your influences and discuss how they have impacted your work?

    I’m sure I get influenced by other artists’ paths here and there, but overwhelmingly, it is my own path in my studio that affects the work the most. I usually have a few pieces in progress so they sort of feed each other in terms of directions, methods and so on. Also, making prints might do something to sculpture making, while sculptures might affect the paintings and so on. It’s all fluid, organic and dialectic.

    Where do you find inspiration?

    Again, things that happen in my studio get me going. It’s exciting to see mere shapes, lines, tones and so on suddenly find their voices and start making dynamics, flows, visual narratives and presences. When I get stuck I listen to music. I also have an electric guitar for releasing some tension and having fun. I also read and write. Actually, making art can be pretty tough, I get stuck quite often.

    In your experience, what is the best thing about being an artist? What is the hardest thing about being an artist?

    There are moments when you forget about everything and you just appreciate the time you spend making the work. And there are even more special moments when you literally melt with the experience of having your work culminate into a finished work. You lose sense of time and space and be one with the experience. Such times are so special that I feel just happy doing what I do in my studio.

    The tough part is that I am aware of what art can be and I struggle with what I can do with art as I look at things outside of my studio with my artist’s eyes. I connect dots and I try to make sense out of events, facts and contexts just as I do in my studio with visual elements. I see that our era is not a time of “democracy”, “freedom”, “humanity” and so on. Awful things are done in the name of those things.

    If you were not an artist, what would you be?

    I really can’t imagine…

    What piece of advice would you give to a young artist?

    The World is huge. Much bigger than the tiny cage old people call “country”, “society”, “culture” and so on. We the artists know the infinite universe of true liberation. Tell people stories about freedom, what it is to be humans, try not to build cages for the people.

    Interview at Freud Monk Gallery

    Wall Sculptures at Freud Monk Gallery

  • Wall Sculptures at Freud Monk Gallery

    In Art, Artist, Exhibition, News, Sculpture on

    Freud Monk Gallery is having an online exhibition of wall sculptures which opens on March 1st.  They are showing some of my pieces.

    I’ve been enjoying their Instagram posts and the site has intriguing interviews by the artists in the current show.  Sign up for email notification at their site.  Their page has a link:  @freudmonkgallery

  • #1 and #2 added to the site

    In Art, Artist, creative process, Sculpture on

    Two of my oldest pieces #1 and #2 have been added to my site. I remember starting to work on #2 while I was in the graduate program at University of Maryland in 1995. I remember continuing to work on it at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. Although the pieces were added to the sculpture section at the site, when I started to work on them I had no ambition of embarking on making “sculptures”. I was merely moved by phenomenon after phenomenon appearing and disappearing on the work surfaces. I was interested in an object-like quality—as opposed to a window to look into an illusionistic-paint scape. I was taken by texture, scratch marks, peeled paint and chunky paint blobs. Instead of working on canvas, I started to work on wood panels (hollow core doors were cut into appropriate sizes with the ends refinished) so that I could dig into them, staple them, bore holes and bang on them. I also built the surface with burlap and plaster for more texture. The layers and my improvisation on them revealed many intriguing visual narratives. It completely captivated me that I could speak with my work. #1 was documented with slide film so it has the soft, grainy look. Remember shooting slides, making dupes and sending them out? All the rejection letters? Lol.

     

    #1, plaster, tar and wood, 24″ x 19″, 1995

    #1 detail view

    #2, acrylic, burlap, enamel, plaster, tar and staple, 36″ x 36″, 1995

    #2 detail view

    #1 detail view