“showers and shamanism”

Hello! Here we are… September and Season No.2 of ART FOR YOUR EAR! I couldn’t think of a better way to kick things off than with the ghostly dresses, strange animals, delicate faces of the incredibly talented German born, Seattle based artist Anne Siems! I was so excited to finally talk to her, and thrilled to have another excuse to post a bunch of her stunning paintings. You can listen to our conversation right up there under “Squirrel Boy” {whom I love more than I can explain}, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

First up, the strange and beautiful work of Anne’s that I first fell in love with a few years back:

Oh, those translucent clothes! They give me chills. Her work has evolved away from this slightly, but I had to include them. LOVE.

Next, antlers and animals… this was Anne’s first venture into the subject of Shamanism {she felt it might have been a bit literal, but I still love them very, very, very much!} :

See? Amazing. This is where her work is heading now… more mystical, less literal, always beautiful:

That closeup. I mean, come on!

And for her most recent work, which will be showing at David Lusk Gallery in Nashville this November {2nd – 30th}, she seems to be merging many of her themes and images from the past few years together. Magical, mysterious, and the animals are back:

Sigh. Gorgeous.

And finally, in the first “Not-So-Speedy Speed Round” of Season No.2 I asked Anne which animal is her favorite to paint:

Rabbits. Big ones! Love, love, love {and of course, I still love you “Squirrel Boy” even though there’s no hare in sight.}

And finally, I can’t finish this post without giving you a peek into Anne’s studio. I love seeing an artist in action:

Ahhh, beautiful light and a woman filled with beautiful light! Thank you so much to Anne for being my first guest for this new season; thanks to Saatchi Art for continuing to support me and this podcast; and of course, THANK YOU for coming back for Season No.2! There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. University of the South at Sewanee
  2. David French, Sculptor
  3. Anne’s workshop info! 
  4. “Inquiry” show at David Lusk Gallery, Nashville (Nov)
  5. Memphis Show, David Lusk Gallery
  6. Fibromyalgia
  7. Anne on Instagram

 





katie donovan

Oh, I love this on so many levels. This is the latest series by St.Louis, Missouri based artist Katie Donovan. I’m going to let her explain the smart, insightful, and hilarious ins & outs of this work:

“If No Publicity Is Bad Publicity, Am I Any Good?” is a drawing and performance-based project. In creating this work I was thinking about my experience as an artist and a question posed by the Jealous Curator, Danielle Krysa. Often when Krysa interviews artists she asks them how they introduce themselves at parties. Generally Krysa asks this to see if they feel comfortable claiming their art calling and how they describe their day-to-day work. Often when I tell people that I am an artist, specifically a draftsman/drawer, they immediately ask, “Are you any good?” I find this question more compelling than insulting. While I assume that these individuals are actually inquiring whether I can draw realistically or not, this question has provoked me to consider the artist as a worker, albeit a very different kind of worker. I decided to make a series of drawings advertising myself as an artist, but in the way that one would advertise themselves as a dog walker, house cleaner, or babysitter. I added the type of imagery that I typically use in my drawings to give the viewer a sample of what I am selling, so to speak. I also added value-based statements about myself as an artist to continue to play with the question, “Are you any good?”

During the fall of 2017 I will be putting these drawings up in public places. Look out for a piece from “If No Publicity Is Bad Publicity, Am I Any Good?” in Starbucks, at the park, in a gallery or any other public space near you. 

Are you really hoping these show up in your city? Me too! So. Smart. {ps. Also, honored to have been a tiny catalyst for this… who knew!?}





jean smith

First, oh my word I love these portraits {acrylic on canvas panel} so, so, so much. Second, Canadian rocker turned painter Jean Smith sells these paintings on Facebook for $100 a pop. WHAT? Yes, true story. Are you wondering what you’re still doing here and why you’re not over there buying a whole bunch of these 11×14 beauties? Me too. Here you go… Jean’s Facebook page. You’re welcome.





sue williams a’court at START


Sigh… this is the latest dreamy work from London based artist Sue Williams A’Court. And yes, I included close-ups because these “portraits” are drawings. If you happen to be in London this weekend, you can see Lady Di, Rocky, Belle and Audrey starting THIS THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 14th at START Art Fair {Stand 12 BoLee Gallery} Saatchi Gallery in London, 14-17th September. Here is a description of this Rococo-ish work:

Sue Williams A’Court’s exquisitely intricate and beautiful Escape From Eden borrows details from Arcadian landscapes of historical works to create an extraordinary series of ‘portraits’. Exploring the way we subconsciously see human forms in the world around us, the muted, delicate paintings evoke Victorian photographs, yet the faces within emerge from delicately interwoven trees, paths and boulders. Playing with ideas of identity, and perception questioning reality, the portraits are landscapes of our own imagination, a state of mind rather than a specific location. Hovering ambiguously between our inner and outer worlds, their mesmerizing, miniature scale invites viewers to lose themselves in an intimate, contemplative reverie in which we no longer feel wholly separate from what we observe.

Lovely. For ticket info etc, visit the START site.





vera van wolferen

What? Oh my goodness… none of my paper looks like this. This is the absolutely lovely work of Dutch animator turned artist . These pieces are part of an installation, titled “Plant Life”, that is currently showing in Porto, Portugal in one of the city’s oldest bookstores – Livraria Lello. Clearly, if you’re anywhere near Porto you have to go see these beauties in person. Oh, but before you do, I have to share part of the email Vera sent me… I love this:

“During my study in Fine Arts I was in the sculpture department, and kept making videos of my sculptures. That’s why I went to do animation, cause everyone said – hey you should make your sculptures move! So I did stop motion for a year, but figured out I was most interested in creating the set design, lighting and photographing the sets… not so much the animation part of it. I now focus on making “Story Objects”, sculptures that are vehicles for the imagination of the viewer. It feels like the objects contain a story, but it up to you to create your own.”
See? Love. This.




shaun downey

Sigh. This is the absolutely exquisite work of Canadian painter Shaun Downey. I’ve written about him before, and I’ll do it again. Shaun’s oil paintings take my breath away … his color choices, those lovely everyday settings, and don’t get me started on those mirrored portraits. Beautiful. {Also, I need a rose for my hair now.}





fidencio fifield-perez


Paper, maps, paint and pins all living together as a delicate, intricate, important narrative. This is the gorgeous, mind-boggling work of Fidencio Fifield-Perez. He was born in Mexico and grew up in the USA. After graduating from art school, he has focused on creating these beautiful, intricate, paper-cutting mixed media pieces. How do I know this? Well, I got an amazing email from a woman that runs the galleries and visiting artist lecture program at his alma mater. She wanted to make sure people knew about Fidencio’s work, and his very important/timely story:

“… Last semester I hosted an exhibit of paintings and cut paper installations made by one of our alumni, Fidencio Fifield-Perez. Fidencio is a DACA recipient, and has spent his life as an artist advocating for fellow undocumented residents and making gorgeous, pointed artworks about his experience living undocumented in the United States  …  Some of his most poignant works are made from appropriated, painted maps. He cuts away the “real” things the map represents- land, water, cities, people- and leaves the imagined, the drawn- roads, latitudes, boarders. Is this mud? A field to be harvested? A body of water to be crossed? Fence, net, or viscera? Every piece is meticulously cut and pinned to the wall with red map pins.”

Beautiful. The world needs more artists like Fidencio, and more people who send this kind of email.





danielle cole

Yes, yes, yes to all of this! These pieces are part of a new series by Canadian collage artist Danielle Cole. I was already totally in, then I read this chunk of her artist statement and I knew this Danielle and I shared more than just our first name:

“Michelangelo said of his art ‘every block of stone has a statue inside and it is the task of the sculpture to discover it.’ This quote holds true for the construction of all my handmade collage and mixed media work. Sorting through hundreds of images until the magical moment when you get to say: that vacuum belongs in that dinosaur’s hand.”  

Ahhh yes, a woman after my own collage-loving heart. Danielle has a show opening next Thursday, September 14th {till Sept 24th}, at Unloveable Gallery in Toronto. It’s titled “Course of an Empire” and features all of these fabulous cars and legs. Go!





susannah montague

Is it possible to be in love while somewhat terrified? Yes, yes it is. This is the beautifully made, sweet ‘n creepy work of Canadian ceramicist Susannah Montague. Butterflies, bones, and babies … I scoured her site looking for the stories behind these gorgeous / scary pieces, but I believe she’s left it up to our imaginations. At this stage all I really know is that I want to ride around in a row boat with a pink beluga.

ps. I do know why Susannah creates these lovely “blastocysts” though…  “This [work] is about my twins as five day old embryos. The day they got transferred into me.”

Beautiful.





ellen von wiegand

Ahhh, yes. I love linocut prints oh so very much… enter the elegant work of UK based artist Ellen Von Wiegand. I am completely smitten with her color choices, her lovely lines, and her very precise registration {fyi: I minored in printmaking and loved linocuts, but my registration did NOT look like this.} I love getting a sneak peek into an artist’s process… doesn’t seeing those chunks of lino, scraped and carved away make you marvel at those gorgeous final works even more? {although, I have to admit, I’d totally hang a few of those lino ladies on my wall too!}

ps. Ellen has some of these original prints available on her site.