Tomory Dodge didn’t find his way to abstraction by steeping himself in theory and assembling a rigorous conceptual framework. Rather, as he tells it, a little sheepishly, “I sort of stumbled into abstract painting.” While a grad student at California Institute of the Arts in the early 2000s, he would drive out to the desert and take photographs for inspiration for his representational paintings. His snapshots weren’t very good—sometimes he wouldn’t even bother looking at them—so he’d resort to making up the image. The whole process began to feel like an “unnecessary burden,” he says, especially because the fun stuff was the abstraction, the little bits on the edges of the recognizable image. He’d save that for last, like the favorite part of a meal. His attention started to drift from the ostensible subject, say a Joshua tree or a tunnel. “The subject matter got pushed out until it wasn’t there anymore,” he recalls.
To read more go to: www.elledecor.com.
**All images are from www.acmelosangeles.com
The work of Lauren Douglas.
Lauren’s first solo show, “i drew a sign at a point in space” opens on February 2 at the Backstock Gallery, a new space in Oakland, CA.
In the Backstock Gallery’s debut exhibition, Lauren Douglas presents a grouping of works that explore how we navigate time and focuses on what Douglas calls “the in between”. The name of the show is derived from an Italo Calvino story called “A Sign in Space” in which he examines the passage of time from the perspective of losing oneself to it. Ultimately the main character tries to make a mark in time with the idea of finding it again, light years later. Using this as a jumping off point, Douglas simultaneously explores the tension between trying to define one’s own life through forced gestures and the ultimate realization that, in the end, we simply exist within the time-space continuum that life lays out for us.
However, instead of approaching this topic with any sense of convalescence or angst, Douglas instead delves into this realization full force by looking deeper at the profoundness of the seemingly mundane. Her photographs document the beauty of light as it reflects on water encouraging us to pause and realize all that we are missing as we rush through our lives. She examines horizons, appreciating their suggestion of what lies ahead but also our inability to every fully reach them as they keep moving away from us, just out of reach.
Her Star Fields contemplate the blurry line between reality and imagination through hand crafted constellations. What’s most startling is that the fabricated stars mirror the precise way that the light is reflecting off the water in Douglas’ other works. It is at this point that connections between these works begin to develop and her ruminations on light and water pushes us to realize our position within a context larger than ourselves.
Also included in the exhibition is a new installation, there was an answer there, in which Douglas immerses us in rippling water. Constructed using a video projection, mirrors and a subtle soundscape, this installation brings the ideas explored in her photographs to stunning conclusion. The power and beauty of something so seemingly mundane becomes an immersive experience in which the viewer is encouraged to step into Douglas’ world, and if only for a fleeting moment, soak in the profoundness of what is right in front of us.
Lauren Douglas is an Oakland based-artist who has been exhibited at Hatch Gallery, The Royal None Such Gallery, Adobe Backroom Gallery and SF Camerworks. Douglas was born in Carson City, Nevada and raised on the Central Coast of California. She received her BA from San Francisco State University in 2005 and is currently an MFA candidate at Mills College. This is her first solo exhibition.
To know more about the gallery, Go here. All italicized text is from the Backstock Gallery’s website.
**All images are from laurendouglasprojects.com
Andreas creates bold and minimal digital collages. To see more of his work go to his photostream.
What better gift can you give those you love than a specially curated, limited edition, gift bag full of treats from amazing artist and makers found in the Little Paper Planes community? Oh, and chocolates. They will all obviously come with some chocolate treats!
We are offering 10 different bags stuffed with goodness, for your best friend cat lover, to your pizza-loving boo. Each bag comes gift wrapped with a card tag and two Ghiradelli chocolates from our city, San Francisco.
Check out all of the bags on the site!
Good to remember and not forget.
Baldridge currently resides in Lafayette, Louisiana where he divides his time between making art, teaching, traveling, and writing.
*** To know more about Jamie go here.
Dotson is an artist based out of Brooklyn, NY. To see more of his work visit his site.
Some of his paintings are currently being shown at the Mirus Gallery in San Francisco.
Dec. 15-Jan. 26-2013
I am so excited to announce a new project I have been working on with Andrew Martin Scott from Needles & Pens and KQED Arts! We have filmed our first podcast highlighting Bay Area artists who have created a harmonious lifestyle where passion and work merge. These are people that are driven by the love of their craft/art and have been able to create a business out of it.
Bay Area artist Jay Nelson has always been into building tree houses, and now he does it for a living. Starting a few years back with a couple of installations in local art galleries, Jay, who has no formal carpentry training, taught himself how to build the imaginary structures that were floating around in his head. We talked to Jay about how he has been able to turn his passion into a business, learning more about his philosophy of life and his definition of success.
This is the pilot episode of Working Title, a collaboration between KQED and Little Paper Planes, hosted by Kelly Lynn Jones of LPP and Andrew Martin Scott, co-owner of Needles and Pens. Through this program, which will include videos, interviews, articles and essays, we will explore how local artist entrepreneurs are re-inventing the American Dream, creating alternative economies and redefining success in the Bay Area. Stay tuned.
To read more, go to KQED: HERE
How do we wrap our minds around shifting notions of form and function; the china cup too delicate to use, the book propping up a table leg? Robert Otto Epstein plays with this fluidity. Painting and drawing with materials you’d find at a hardware store, he carefully re-renders schematic patterns. These patterns, in turn, come from instructions for machined and do-it-yourself textiles, both ornamental and functional. Deftly folding categories upon themselves, Epstein points to an open, freeing notion of what it means to make something, and beyond that, to express oneself.
MH: First of all, you base your paintings on diagrams for a specific type of textile. Can you talk about what filet lace is and how you became interested in it?
ROE: I originally became interested in knitting by happenstance while researching models for my figurative work. I’m keen on the vintage look and had come across a Bernat knitting pattern book from the 1960s and was immediately drawn to the understated elegance of the figures modeling knitted garments in ways that seemed genuinely simulated, real life mannequins that were impeccably still. Simply put, I became obsessed with collecting as many knitting books as I could find on eBay, from a cadre of grandmothers appropriately named Ruby, Patricia, Dorothy, etc., from Grand Rapids to Pensacola. When I was fixated on the models wearing sweaters, cardigans, coats, dresses, etc., I had not even noticed the actual knitting diagrams mapping out how to make the garments. And then one day, not to be too dramatic, I knew there had to be more. My version of thinking ‘outside the box’ was reaching further inside the box, to the source of things, which, in this case, was the blueprint for clothing.
MH: Can you talk about your interest in schematics? In breaking wholes into parts? I can see a sort of push and pull between the way your figure paintings (the ones on block of wood, especially) break the subject into chunks, and then the way the pattern/knitting diagram painting play with how increment pieces (stitches, marks) assemble to form a whole.
ROE: I think my interest in diagrams goes way back to when I was a child. My grandmother used to sew pillowcases, bed sheets, tablecloths etc., but it was my father, a mechanical engineer who introduced me to the way things are made in draft form. He would bring home rolled up drawings from work and I would study them, reading my father’s typewriter-style handwriting behind arrows pointing to plotted shapes. Fast-forward several years later to when I studied deconstructionism as an ‘adult.’ I became obsessed with breaking ideas down; questioning assumptions/beginnings. In my knitting and lace pattern drawings/paintings there is a first stitch—but in a way, there isn’t. By focusing on each square or stitch as a whole I lose sight of the bigger ‘picture’ until the end when I run out of empty squares.
MH: Where does your interest in American decorative art come from? Whether the knitting/embroidery-related works, or the figure works, everything relates to what one might see in a certain type of suburban living room in the 20th century, from the framing of the figures as studio portraits to the motifs in the knitting.
ROE: I would venture to guess that my earliest fascination for decorative art in general dates back once again to my childhood. My parents are Eastern European (my mother is Romanian, my father, Lithuanian) and their friends were from the former USSR. I can remember seeing a rug on the wall for the first time in one of their houses and thinking to myself, what the fuck? —And yet also finding it strangely appealing. It challenged my expectation of what handmade objects are for, of their use—an eight year-old’s existential confrontation with the whole notion of form versus function. As for American influences, I went to the American Folk Art Museum a few years ago and was drawn to all those quilts, rugs, weavings, and needlework, etc. The work of Henry Darger and Martin Ramirez especially blew me away.
MH: Your current statement includes the following: “My primary interests are in modes of production or ‘the machinery of making.’ I like to consider the body at work in the vein of Gilles Deleuze’s ‘desiring machine’—as a kind of round-the-clock factory model where the assembly of ‘being’ and ‘doing’ and its creative wares are one in the same.” Can you talk about how your work with source material that is both industrial (what Deleuze is speaking of) and also perhaps quite domestic (as a skilled handicraft, as a hobby, as a personal decoration)? It seems like the shift in scale also changes the political context.
ROE: Deleuze, like Foucault, was a proponent of a kind of schizophrenic way of seeing/being the world, a state of mind where one can reach beyond and within oneself through/as other, even risking a loss of normalcy in order to achieve a beautifully expressive means of being. The materials I use—the paint and paper—come from a hardware store (industrial) and my personal use of these materials (for decorative purposes) runs counter to typical applications of these materials. Yet they are my solitary means of expression, of how I navigate the world: as a self-taught artist ‘desiring to produce’ work yet constructing it the only way I know how—through an other’s means. In fact the interweaving of the industrial and the personal reach a climax when the work is framed and hung, when the house paint meant for the wall that the work is hung on, is instead used to adorn it.
MH: What projects do you have coming up? Are you obsessing about anything new and starting to stock up on eBay or checking a bunch of books out of the library?
ROE: I will be showing my work in the next few months in New York with Parallel Art Space, Mulherin + Pollard, and Airplane. I’m very excited about this!! And I’m always hoarding knitting pattern books from my eBay and Etsy grandma dealers. My work is evolving at the moment; this will become more evident in the very near future.
MH: What artists are you excited about these days?
ROE: Due to my overriding generational Jewish guilt I am unable to be excited about anything, but I’ve revisited Eva Hesse, Agnes Martin, Martin Ramirez, Robert Rauschenberg, and Art Vandelay.
MH: Finally, what’s your own home like? I’m always curious about the way artists who are hyper aware of domestic space design, or don’t design, their own places.
ROE: My girlfriend, my dog (a copacetic golden retriever), and I rent a craftsman style house in northern New Jersey. The living and dining rooms and a room upstairs are my ‘studio.’ Basically it’s a shitstorm everywhere. But the three of us get mani/pedis every weekend, so it all evens out.
Call for Entry!
LPP is pleased to announce a call for entry for its next online exhibition-Inspiration Station
The exhibition will be presented online February 4-March 15, 2013, with a publication available March 11.
This is no regular call for entry-the exhibition will not include any artwork itself, but rather showcase its supporting elements-the artist’s workplace, materials and objects of inspiration, written descriptions, and will highlight the factors of time and chance into an exhibition’s selection process.
Artists, if you were asked to describe your work by only showing things that inspire you (such as objects, photographs, or books), in the place where you make the work, and describe the work verbally in a brief statement, could you? If you only had a few days to prepare for this, would you be ready? As artists, we hope that the art will speak for itself, but the supplements of an artists’ practice and the chance elements of timing and preparedness are just as much a part of the exhibition process. These supplements include a place to work, materials and objects of inspiration, and writing about the work. LPP’s mission includes the encouragement of dialogue and engagement of its community, we hope to foster and promote all elements of contemporary art. We want to read what you have to write, see the things that inspire you and the places where you make the work. Now is your chance to share this.
For the submission process, we ask that you pay attention to a few simple rules. To be considered for inclusion in the exhibit, you must follow these exactly. Please read them carefully.
The first 40 submissions we receive after 8am PST on Thursday, January 17, 2013 will be included in our next online exhibition. From these 40, we will select 15 to be included in the exhibition publication.
-Submissions will be accepted starting at 8am (PST), Thursday January 17, 2013. Any submissions sent before this time will not be considered.
-Send the following to email@example.com with the subject line-Online exhibition submission
-1 image of your workspace that includes material inspiration (objects, photographs, and/or books for example), but does not show your finished artwork. Image must be 960pxls wide at 72dpi
-Your artist statement (1-2 paragraphs).
-In the body of the email, include your name, location, and link to your website (if you have one).
Submissions not adhering to the above rules will not be considered for inclusion. Artists to be included in the online exhibition will be notified before the exhibition opens. Artists to be included in the publication will be notified by February 4th. By submitting work, you agree to have your images exhibited online at littlepaperplanes.com