medium /// mixed media

lorna simpson


Damn. I wish I thought of that. I haven’t said that out loud in awhile, but the moment I saw these beautiful women with their stunning, inky hair, well, I couldn’t help myself. These pieces are all from a collage & ink series, titled “Ebony”, by American artist Lorna Simpson. Lorna is an incredibly accomplished artist, known for her pioneering work in photography and film making … the list of galleries where her work has been shown is insane… MoMA, LACMA, and the Whitney just to name a few!  These collages are her most recent work, some of which are 30″x22″. She repurposes images from the 1950s {found in vintage issues of Ebony magazine I believe}, “taking the African-American woman as a point of departure, continuing [Lorna’s] longstanding examination of the ways that gender and culture shape the experience of life in our contemporary multiracial society.” Beautiful.

*Quote taken from the description of, “Lorna Simpson : Works on Paper”

“on the other side of pop culture”


Episode no. 5 : Kansas City based artist Peregrine Honig. I “know” Peregrine, but only through email, so I was very excited, and a little nervous, to finally speak to her in person. We talked about her experience as a reality TV cast member {for real!}, helpful procrastination tips, and her latest body of work {no pun intended} that could have gotten her arrested in China. Everything in this episode is shown here so that you can follow along while we’re talking. Most of it won’t make sense unless you listen, so just click ‘play’ right up there {see, just under those beautiful boys}, and you can also subscribe on iTunes. Alright, first things first… reality TV meets art:


Yes. Reality TV and art… that might literally be my own personal heaven. Did you watch Bravo’s Work of Art? I sure did… and Peregrine was on it! {that’s her above, in silver, just below the “of”}. I loved this show, and Peregrine was my favorite all the way through so it was VERY exciting to finally ask her all of my fangirl questions! The images above are from her final, fantastic, absolutely gorgeous show. Sigh. Love. Ok, so after I obsessed over that for awhile, we moved on to talk about her latest series, #hoteldrawings:


Gorgeous, and I love that she didn’t create them in her usual studio space! She then took this sassy series to a new level via an incredible printmaking residency in China, just this past spring:


Yes, that’s the master calligrapher she mentioned… an inspiring collaboration, and “so sexy” as the girls would say! {This work will be shown in September 2015 at Red Star, Kansas City MO.} As we were finishing up with the “speed round”, I asked if she had any strange final stories to share… she did:


What!? The glass crown by Kate Clements that I wrote about {right here}, the day before Peregrine and I did this interview… and look where it lives?! Crazy.

Oh, and I said that I would include her first answer from my book, Creative Block. All of her answers were like poetry, but this Q/A was my favorite:

JC: Do you remember the first time you felt like “an artist”?

PH: I remember drawing in the sun on my mother’s apartment porch when I was four. My hand was cooperating with my mind. A Belgian man and his girlfriend were staying downstairs. He was smoking near me. He looked at what I was drawing and told me I was too good to draw on both sides of a sheet of paper. The memory of this moment is fresh- the airborne dust, the smell of tobacco, the texture of the wood under my paper. I had never been praised in the form of advice.

Ah, lovely. And with that, I will say a huge thank you to Peregrine for taking the time to do this with me, and of course a great big THANKS to all of you for listening/looking! The next episode will be filled with art and ready for your ears next Saturday.

jason middlebrook


Oh. My. Found wood and colorful, intricately painted lines? Yes, please! I absolutely love this series of work by American painter Jason Middlebrook. After moving from Brooklyn to Hudson New York, now out of the city and into nature, Jason started painting on chunks of discarded wood – adding contemporary design to the already gorgeous work that Mother Nature provided… a perfect collaboration.

{via My Modern Met}

johan barrios


Graphite and watercolor. Oh, and paper. That’s it. These mixed media drawings are the gorgeous work of Colombian artist Johan Barrios. Perfectly drawn portraits, on washy/loose fields of paint… I’d like to write more, but instead I’m just going to stare at these in awe. {Drawings!?}

adrian esparza


Sarape blanket, wood, nails, enamel… now that is a fantastic materials list! Texas based artist Adrian Esparza deconstructs and then reconstructs Mexican sarape blankets, viewing them as “an evolving self-portrait.” He transforms them from their traditional, original form into stunning, modern geometric installations poetically exploring the idea of his identity as a Mexican-American growing up on the border of these two cultures. I would love to see this work in person… this is the best I can do today:




{all images via Taubert Contemporary; found via Pattern Pulp}

gabee meyer


Painted leaves… not paintings of painted leaves… painted leaves! Sigh. So pretty. These are part of a personal series by Brazilian artist/pattern designer Gabee Meyer. Now, it’s not enough that she hand painted them with repeating stripes and triangles, but she also put them all together into one big leafy, pattern… I’d expect nothing less from a pattern designer actually! {here it is, plus a few more of my faves because I can’t not share. Also, wiener dog.}:




strike away show


Remember when your parents said, “Don’t play with matches” ? Yeah, well these artists did NOT listen… thank goodness! Over the last few weeks, I kept seeing fabulous little matchbox interventions pop up on Instagram, and so naturally the hunt was on! When I traced them back to the source, I found “Strike Away”a show that has nearly 450 altered matchbooks by 225 artists from around the world, curated by Courtney Cerruti and Alicia Dornadic. So fun, and oh so creative! From “burned books”, to bowling lanes, to little packs of cigarettes, this show truly covers the spectrum! Sigh. Sorry Mom, I might have to go find some matches of my own! {The show is up until June 20th at Paxton Gate Kids located at 766 Valencia St., San Francisco. If you can’t make it to the show, check out their Instagram feed – lots of the work is posted there}

*Just a fraction of the talented artists involved, shown above: 1. Jane Mount  2. Crystal Morey  3. Mandy Behrens  4. Vanessa Wimmer  5. Sara Diamond  6. Molly Hatch  7. Diana Rodgers  8. Nik Sonfield  9. Nik Sonfield

jim bachor


You’ve got a street full of potholes… what should you do? Call Chicago based artist Jim Bachor and ask him to fill ’em up with ice cream! “Treats in the Streets” is Jim’s latest series, in which he uses the ancient art of marble/glass mosaics to transform damaged roads into works of art… and if filling potholes with ice cream doesn’t scream happy weekend, well I just don’t know what does.

{via Colossal}


#creative UNblock no.6


How is it already half way through this year of #creativeUNblock challenges? Crazy. Anyway, I’m so excited to do this project given to us by Boston based artist Leah Giberson {If you missed the first five projects, or have no idea what I’m talking about, you can catch up right here.} Ok, June’s project is all about rules, instructions, and “how-to’s”… kinda. Get your supplies, because this is going to be fun:


#creativeunblock // june // by leah giberson p.131


“Years ago I kept a visual journal filled with little collages, found paragraphs, and how-to diagrams. I’ve always had trouble following written directions and found it was more fun to turn these step-by-step guides into visual poetry.

1. Find a how-to diagram from a magazine or print one out from the web and then glue it down to a larger piece of paper. Acrylic gel medium or bookbinding glue are both good choices because they are less likely to wrinkle the paper.

2. Decide which elements you find most interesting and want to keep, then using gesso or acrylic paint, paint over anything you want to cover in order to obscure and alter the original activity being described.

3. With pen, or collage, or thread, etc etc you can then embellish what remains, extending or adding lines that might already exist so they become something else entirely.” ~ Leah Giberson


Yes! I have a stack, and I mean a GIANT PILE, of Ikea instruction booklets that I’ve been saving… mind you, I had no idea what I was saving them for until this very moment! If you’d like to share what you make, just put it up on Instagram or Twitter and hashtag it #creativeUNblock. Relax, don’t worry about perfection, and have fun… see you out there!

“if it buckles, it buckles.”


Oh boy, here we are… episode no.2 of ART FOR YOUR EAR. I said it would be every second Saturday, but I’m having way too much fun, so there will be a new one every Saturday! Up this week… ah, my collage idol, UK based artist Anthony Zinonos. Everything we talk about in the podcast is shown here so that you can follow along while we’re chatting. You can listen right up there {see, just under the lined “water”}, and you can also subscribe on iTunes.

I loved talking to Anthony {or maybe I should call him ‘Paul’}, and I hope you love listening!  ps. I’m slowly figuring out the “sounding like I’m recording in a cave” thing. I recorded the intro & outro for this episode under a blanket {I’m not kidding, it was like a little podcast fort}, but I’d already recorded the interview. Just a few more interviews that sound cave-like, and then we should be in full-on blanket fort mode! That’s how the professionals do it, right?


Collage {my second book} Anthony wrote an amazing foreword, and of course, his work was featured as well:


Anthony and I talked about how one image can be used in totally different ways by different artists – that was actually the premise of this book {why we didn’t talk about that, I’m not sure!}. Anyway, the image on the left was the starting photo that I gave to all thirty of the artists in “Collage”… the image on the right is what Anthony created. ps. that cowboy and accordion player are my uncle and my dad!


‘justGOtalkTOher’  & ‘theGREAToutdoors’  {the beach & picnic I referenced}



I cannot even deal with this… look what Anthony’s dad just sent me! A “collaborative piece/scam” between Anthony and his sister {and Anthony’s first collage, age 10}… apparently they’re still waiting for the money:





And that’s that! A huge thank you to Anthony for always saying ‘yes’ whenever I ask him to do stuff, and for teaching me to simplify and “let go.” If it buckles, it buckles right? Right! I also want to give high fives to Greg for being a fabulous producer, and to my brother Cam for creating the original music for me. And finally, thank YOU so much for listening xo  ps. Episode no.3 will be up next Saturday!