medium /// mixed media




art-a-porter : a group show … kinda

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You guys, this is crazy  {I’m not very good at keeping secrets, and I’ve managed to keep this one since last winter… #miracle}. I’ve curated shows for galleries, created online collections, and now I’ve curated an art-inspired clothing collection. What?! Yes. So, so crazy. Last winter, Montreal based fashion house Art-A-Porter reached out and asked if I would curate an exhibition, that instead of hanging on a wall, would be displayed on clothing. Originally I said no, I was too busy {and nervous that there were no walls involved} … but I couldn’t control myself… it just sounded too fun! And so they gave me a huge folder of artists to choose from and off we went. This lovely, limited edition collection is the result, and I’m so proud of it! Here is my “curatorial statement”, and then a peek at some of the artwork/pieces:

From collage, to painting, to mixed media – the work of Joe WebbMonica Trastoy, J.D Doria, Niki Hare, and Erin Case is very different, yet all of the individual pieces come together beautifully, creating one unified collection that is dreamy, modern, black and white – with just the perfect pop of vintage-inspired color. I chose these pieces because, well, each one is stunning on it’s own, but when brought together the combination of organic shapes and geometric lines was something I couldn’t resist – amazing on a gallery wall, and even more exciting when you can actually take this exhibition off of the wall, and wear it.

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Gah! I love it all! And there is so much more to the collection… see it all right here. Thank you so much to AAP for giving me this bizarre and wonderful opportunity to curate on something other than a wall, and thank you so much to all of the amazing artists who are involved… it was an honor working with your art!

{Artists in order of images above: Monica Trastoy // Joe Webb // JD Doria // Erin Case // Niki Hare}

*A great article about AAP and this idea of wearable art came out yesterday. Read it here.





ximena escobar

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Felt collages? Love! And those color palettes? Love… again! This is the work of Colombian artist/pattern designer Ximena Escobar, and these pieces are from her series, titled “Blooming”. She posts some pretty fantastic work to her Facebook page as well, that you can see right here.





ann carrington

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No. I cannot get over the amazingness of this gorgeous, large-scale mixed media work by British artist Ann Carrington. Buttons. And chain. On velvet. STUNNING. And then of course there is her use of Queen Elizabeth… I have a thing for artwork that features Queen Elizabeth {probably due to my Canadian-ness}. Sigh. So good.

{Thanks to Robert Novogratz for pointing me to Ann’s work… he owns the pearl button queen on black above. Jealous? Yep, me too.}

 





“push through the messiness”

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Today I’m talking to Portland based artist, Lisa Congdon. Yep, Portland! She just moved from her long time home of San Francisco… oh, and for the ‘speed round’, please note the ‘California’ tattoo on her arm in the photo above. Alright, listen right up there, or subscribe on iTunes. As you’re listening, you can take a peek at the things that Lisa and I talked about, in the order that we talked about them. If you’re not listening, I’ll be honest… this post won’t make much sense!

Ok, let’s do this. This is the glamorous “recording studio” that I mentioned right off the bat:

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Very high tech. {Oh, and I mentioned the interview she and her wife Clay just did on the Being Boss podcast, which you can listen to right here.} I asked if she still had the first painting she ever did… this is the first still life painting from the first painting class she took {just for fun} in her early 30’s. She did this in 2001:

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Love it! {thanks for sharing this little gem, Lisa!} This next piece was part of the 2012 Dorothy Saxe Invitational Exhibition at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco:

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Gorgeous! And what an amazing full circle moment when her teacher stumbled upon this at that show, years after teaching her how to paint! So cool. I also wanted to include a bunch of her current abstract work, along with some of my favorites of her mixed media pieces from a few years back {that large abstract below makes me think of the “painting curve” that she talks about}

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Love. And then we had to talk about her books, because there are so many of them … this isn’t even all of them! These are just the ones we had time to talk about:

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Ah, they’re all so great! The new swimming book {“The Joy of Swimming: A Celebration of Our Love for Getting in the Water”} is going to be gorgeous, and will be out next Spring! Ok, next… I asked her what she loves drawing the most:

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Patterns and flowers, obviously! Those images above are directly from her sketchbook. Also directly from her sketchbook? A gorgeous new line of textiles that she made with Cloud 9 Fabrics:

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I wonder when she sleeps? And finally, this is the sketchbook course she was talking about:

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You can find info for these classes here:  “Sketchbook Explorations” and “Line Drawing” {and there is a new “Sketchbook Explorations” class starting this fall, so keep an eye out for that} Phewf! She is a busy lady, and that was an action packed post! Thanks so much to Lisa, to Saatchi Art for supporting this episode, and to you for looking ‘n listening. The next episode will be ready for your artsy ears next Saturday.

*The top-most photo of Lisa was taken by Sarah Deragon, and the two photos of Lisa painting the large abstract were taken by Victoria Smith.




charline giffard

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I got chills when I saw this installation, titled “La chambre de Marie” {Marie’s Bedroom}, by Canadian artist Charline Giffard. Her site is in French, but without even reading her artist statement I knew immediately that this work had to be about her grandmother… because everything in this room reminded me exactly of my grandmother, Blanche {who also lived in Quebec!}.  I miss her, and these lovely vignettes brought so many memories rushing back. I can almost smell her powdery perfume on those pink dresses.





katrien de blauwer

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Simple. Elegant. This is the collage work of Belgium based artist Katrien De Blauwer. Vintage paper and a few perfectly sliced images that look a lot like old film stills… now I want to see all of these movies. If only they existed.





tracy hung

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Bizarre, dream-like scenes complete with found images, little sketches, and a lovely/quiet palette. This is the mixed media collage work of LA based artist, illustrator, and designer Tracy Hung. I love each of these pieces on their own, but when you see them all come together, as part of this album cover design that she was commissioned to do for Satoshi Gogo, an acoustic guitarist based in Nara, Japan… well, it’s a dreamy “bedtime story” waiting to happen:

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Sigh. The collage artist and graphic designer in me are totally smitten.





hagar vardimon-van heummen

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Ok, now I really, really want a cherry popsicle. No, lime! I want lime! These pieces are from the latest mixed media series by Amsterdam based artist Hagar Vardimon-van Heummen. The series is titled, Bubble, and it’s about “being present but invisible at the same time” … ah yes, I’ve felt like that in a bathing suit before. I love Hagar’s embroidery on found images so much, but what I love even more is that she never seems to stop exploring, creating, sharing. Yesterday houses & house plants, today colorful bubbles over summery vintage photographs… I can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds.





javier martin

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Ok, I want this entire series in my house. This is the mixed media work {collage of paper, neon light, oil and acrylic on board} of Spanish artist Javier Martin. All of these stunning pieces are part of his “Blindness Light” series. In almost all of his work, his subjects’ eyes are covered in some way – in this case with glowing bars of candy-hued neon light – to “set a point about how society judges without looking further.”   

Stunning.





#creativeUNblock no.7

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Here we are, more than half way through this 12 months of 12 projects {If you missed the first six projects, no problem, you can catch up right here.} July’s project takes us outside… thank goodness because my house is so hot right now! Yes, I’m quite excited to take this advice from Portland based artist Rachel Denny… ready?

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#creativeunblock // july // by rachel denny, pg.65

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“Go outside and take a walk. Listen and look at your surroundings. Find a natural object that you find interesting and take it home. Try to replicate the object in an unnatural way. Paint it realistically using text, sculpt it out of something in the kitchen (a potato, empty bags, etc), or use colors that are not part of the original object.

Use your imagination, and don’t be afraid of failure. You can’t do it wrong.” ~ Rachel Denny

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Fun! If you’re in the Northern hemisphere put on a hat and some sunscreen and get out there… for friends in Australia and New Zealand, grab a sweater and go! If you’d like to share what you make, just put it up on Instagram or Twitter and hashtag it #creativeUNblock. And like Rachel says, don’t be afraid of failure… you can’t do it wrong.