myartspace is the premier online venue for the contemporary art world. The community includes established artists, emerging artists, aspiring artists, collectors, curators, teachers, galleries, art appreciators.
Friday, December 11, 2009
Emerson Gallery Opening December 10, 2009
Palo Alto, CA. December 10, 2009 -- MYARTSPACE opened the doors to it's Emerson Gallery location one last time to showcase winners of the NYAXE Gallery Competition. It was a festive evening with great art and lively chatter among old friends and new.
Curator, Nigel, and CEO/Founder Catherine McCormack-Skiba lined the walls with works from the 4 top winners of the competition: Carrie M. Becker, Viviane Vives, Lucio Carvalho, and Pau Guerrero-Prado. 18 more distinguished runners-up had their works displayed digitally accross a wide-screen, HD video platform.
A crowd of local artists, curators, and art lovers were officially welcomed to the exhibit by Carrie M. Becker’s series "Abandoned Farmhouses of mid-Kansas". Abandoned, but not forgotten, through Becker's lense solace and refuge are found amid the rural decay. In addition to her talents with a camera, Becker is working toward an MFA in sculpture.
Alongside Becker were original prints from Viviane Vive’s "Teen Suburbia" collection. Vive's captures the too-cool-for-school attitudes of her female models with a fresh, cinamatic style. Vive's is originally from Barcelona, but speaks five languages has lived all over the world supporting herself as actress/writer/director.
Lucio Carvalho stunned visitors with vibrant photographs of exploding assemblages. For Carvalho, household trinkets and compost scraps translate into something fantastic! Carvalho is a Brazilian artist, fashion designer, and publicity art director with a degree in Industrial Design.
Pau Guerrero-Prado toped off the evening with a selection from his sequence "Sonai" in which a woman poses with a peacock. Guerrero-Prado's subject, composition, and use of light are all exquisite, so it's no surprise his works were a popular topic of discussion.
Art on the video platform also drew a lot of attention. We were proud to represent finalists Michelle Rogers, Eric White, James Shefik, Steven White, Benjamin Eric, Tra Bouscaren, Douglas A Kinsey, Laura Greengold, Olan Montegomery, Michael Maier, Natalia Bazowska, Heejea Namgung, Hijo Nam, Meryl Pataky, Daniel John Gadd, Alma Leiva, Judy Csotsits, and Tamara Hervera.
To learn more about these artists and to see galleries of their works, visit the winners page on our website:
Friday, December 04, 2009
myartspace / Aqua Art Miami Beach 2009
The Aqua Art Miami Fair launched with great success on Thursday, December 3rd. myartspace.com was there in force, with the backing of its large and talented community of artists showing off the winners of the most recent competition. You can click on the myartspace gallery below to see some images from the opening day.
The Winners On Display
Works from Kristi Mallakoff, Justin Beckman and Mandy Greer were all prominently on display at the myartspace.com exhibit. In addition, a streaming channel of the 50 finalists were created and are projected on a large wall at the booth. The exhibition is eye-catching and hundreds of art appreciators, collectors and gallerists have stopped by and marveled at the quality work of the myartspace community. To view the myartspace.tv channel with the winners/finalists work, click HERE.
The Top 3 Winners
Kristi Malakoff is a Canadian visual artist who has returned to Canada after time spent living abroad, most recently in Berlin, Germany and previously in Reykjavik, Iceland and London, England where she attended the Chelsea College of Art and Design. She has been selected to do a residency at Proekt Fabrika in Moscow, Russia in the spring of 2010. Malakoff is a 2005 BFA graduate of the Emily Carr Institute in Vancouver, Canada where she was the recipient of many awards and scholarships, among them the Alvin Balkind Memorial Scholarship, the Helen Pitt Award and the Governor General's silver medal for the top Emily Carr Institute graduating student of 2005. Since graduating, she has participated in artist residency programs at the Banff Centre, the Stride Gallery, Calgary, and SIM, Reykjavik, Iceland. She has exhibited in an exhaustive schedule in both group and solo shows throughout Canada and in England, the US, Germany and Mexico.
Justin Beckman received a BFA from Art Center College of design in 1998 and an MFA in sculpture from Central Washington University in 2008. Since December 2001, Beckman has been living and working in the unincorporated town of Thorp, Washington, and is a founding member of PUNCH Gallery in the Pioneer Square area of Seattle. Beckman has exhibited work both locally and nationally including Art Share in Los Angeles, CA; The Museum of Art in Ft. Lauderdale, FL; G.A.S.P. in Boston, MA; Tacoma Art Museum's 8th Northwest Biennial and most recently at the Sguardi Sonori traveling festival of media and time based art in Italy, and Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey.
Mandy Greer is a sculptor & mixed-media installation artist with an MFA in ceramics from the University of Washington (99'), where she held a Jacob K. Javitz National Graduate Fellowship. Mandy received a BFA in ceramics and a BA in English from the University of Georgia (96') and went Phi Beta Kappa. In Washington, she has shown her work at The Bellevue Art Museum, The Tacoma Art Museum, The Kirkland Arts Center; and in Seattle at The Henry Gallery, 4Culture Gallery, Soil Gallery, Consolidated Works and Priceless Works Gallery. She has also shown at the Tampa Museum of Art, Fl and Bucheon Gallery in SF. Her work is included in the books The Best of New Ceramic Art (1997), Fashion is Art (2003), as well as Soil Gallery, 10 Years (2005). Mandy's work is featured in the video.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Community Meeting in London with MyArtspace
If you are in London on Monday Nov 23rd, and would like to meet us co-founders of MyArtspace, please come by!
This is the first meet-up in a series that we plan to do around the world. We'd like to meet the community, get feedback, and tell you about some new opportunities for artists to make money and get recognition on MyArtspace.
For anyone who comes by, we will be providing a complimentary 3 month Premium MyArtspace membership! Existing members who attend may also get an additional 3 month extension to their membership, as well.
Ground Floor, World's End Distillery,
459 Kings Road,
Monday Nov 23
For the sake of saving some space at the bar, if you think you will come by, please email:
Hope to see you Monday!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Scholarship.Com, a site for art students to check out...
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
The Booth Location at Aqua Art Miami
For more information on our Miami 2009 Competition, see:
Thursday, October 22, 2009
NYAXE GALLERY: Autumn Opening
In attendence were some of Silicon Valley's rising stars including Michael Arrington, Editor of TechCrunch; Craig Hughes, CTO at NewCo, Inc and former Co-Founder of GumStix; Normal Liang, former executive of Photobucket; Luke Winter, CEO Galaxy Granola; Geoffrey Arone, CEO of DanceJam and Flock; Terry Angelos, Co-Founder & CPO, TrialPay; Tom Conrad, CTO of Pandora; Irene McGee, CEO of No One is Listening; and Paul Guely, Founder & CEO of Arma Partners.
Kimia Ferdowski, one of the winning artists was in attendance with one of her subjects.
Twenty MyArtSpace artists were represented at the show including Penelope Caldwel, Takefumi Hori, Kimia Ferdowsi, Cara Thayer & Louie Van Patten, Beverley McQuillan, Barbara Diener, Rebecca Fontaine-Wolf, Eline Peek, Mikhail Gubin, Emily Maddigan, Chris Dunker, Jeanne Wilkinson & Andrew Yonda, Bill Bosler, Christopher Savage, Dan Atkins, Yuval Shalgi,
Pearl Van Geest, Renata Fernandez and Chanil Hong.
Catherine McCormack-Skiba, CEO and Founder of MyArtSpace with Paul Noel Guely, Founder of Arma Partners.
Craig Hughes, CTO of NewCo, Inc and former CTO of Gumxtix and Loca.com
Nigel Evans, myartspace's resident curator, preparing the show having flown in from London.
The Autumn Exhibition will run at the NYAXE Gallery until the end of December. The Winter Exhibition is then planned to open on December 10th.
Monday, October 19, 2009
New 1st and 3rd Place Winners for NYAXE Competition
We, at myartspace, are dedicated to increasing the accessibility of art. We are striving to liberate and empower artists so that they may create artwork that challenges us to look at our world in new ways.
In order to fulfill this vision, we support the laws and conventions for protecting the intellectual property of artists. It was recently called to our attention that we had selected two pieces of art for our latest NYAXE Competition that did not credit nor have due permission from the original creators.
Our thoughts on the debate over what constitutes Fair Use was just covered in our last blog post (October 17, Shepard Fairey), and we will not revisit it for now.
However, we did feel compelled to announce 2 new, outstanding 1st and 3rd place winners for our NYAXE Competition. They are:
Penelope Caldwell, 1st Place
Kimia Ferdowsi, 3rd Place
We thank all of the contest participants, as we are thrilled by the quality, audacity, and authenticity of the thousands of submissions we had received. You are gifted creators who deserve recognition and respect for your art.
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Shepard Fairey Update -- The "HOPE" Picture
From Yahoo News: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091018/ap_on_en_ot/us_ap_poster_artist
On Friday night, Fairey's attorneys — led by Anthony Falzone, executive director of the Fair Use Project at Stanford University — said they intend to withdraw from the case and said the artist had misled them by fabricating information and destroying other material.
Fairey admitted that he didn't use The Associated Press' photo of Obama seated next to actor George Clooney he originally said his work was based on — which he claimed would have been covered under "fair use," the legal claim that copyrighted work can be used without having to pay for it.
Instead he used a picture the news organization has claimed was his source — a solo picture of the future president seemingly closer to the iconic red, white and blue image of Obama, underlined with the caption "HOPE." Fairey said that he tried to cover up his error by submitting false images and deleting others.
The distinction is critical because fair use can sometimes be determined by how much of an original image or work was altered in the creation of a new work. If Fairey didn't need to significantly alter the image he used — in this case the solo shot of Obama — then his claim could have been undermined. Fair use cases also may consider the market value of the copyrighted material and the intended use of the newly created work.
See more about this subject by visiting the Yahoo News Article listed above OR the many articles on myartspace BLOG. Click HERE to view those articles.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Art Process - More Powerful than Product?
In other words, he documented his creative process, and that has been in some ways more powerful than the finished piece.
Check it out:
Vote For Art, a new startup site with big ambitions and a competition
At myartspace. we love the raw energy and passion that goes into creative work. In many cases, it's our artists pushing the edge with their latest work.
Creative work on the web is also interesting for us, and just watching the launch of new and interesting web sites with ideas and ambitions is really quite exciting.
Jeremy Parker, an enterprising college youth, has spotted an opportunity to have real art on t-shirts in University bookstores, and founded VoteForArt.com. VoteForArt.Com is the very first crowdsourced college tshirt website, where artists from around the world can submit tshirt designs for universities and other licensed institutions. The community will vote on the designs, and the top 3 winners will have their designs sold online AND at their local university bookstore. The designer of the winning design also gets $500 in their pocket!
If you've got some creative ideas on some logo designs and want to try your creative skills out, you can enter for FREE!
Just visit www.voteforart.com
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Re-ordering the Sequence of Images using the Gallery Wizard
When you construct your online galleries to present your work, you should consider that fact. Your very best work should be presented first in a gallery, as this will likely cause the viewer to look deeper into your work. If they lose interest by the first few images, then they may very well move on, without seeing your best image.
At times, with visual presentation, order matters as well. So the sequence in which your work is viewed is important.
Premium Service members have "drag-and-drop" capability to re-order images within a portfolio/gallery. Standard users, however, can re-order images with the use of the Gallery Wizard. The steps are pretty stright forward.
(1) Log into myartspace and go to the "My Account" page
(2) Click on "Gallery Wizard" which you will find towards the center of the page
(3) Enter a name for a new gallery, perhaps "Miami 2009"
(4) On the next screen, you will have a prompt to upload your first image. If you click on "Browse Library..." you will see all the images you have uploaded. Select the first image you want the jury to see. Remember, the Gallery Wizard builds a gallery in the order it is given images, from left-to-right.
(5) Click on "Upload Next" image and repeat the process until you are done, then you can click on "Finish" and either add music or not.
That's it! Your new gallery will be in the order you wanted. If you choose, you can delete the old gallery so as not to confuse the viewers.
Monday, October 05, 2009
MYARTSPACE launches MIAMI 2009; Juried Competition with winners work shown at Aqua Art Miami
Palo Alto, CA (PRWEB) October 6, 2009 -- MyArtspace.com, the premier online venue for contemporary art has launched an exciting new juried competition for its community – Miami 2009. The top 3 winners will have their work flown to Miami and represented at the Aqua Art Miami Art Fair during the week of Art Basel Miami, December 3-6, 2009. Additionally, the top 50 finalists will have their work digitally shown at the exhibit. The deadline for contest registration and submission of work is Sunday November 15, 2009.
To enter the competition, artists must be a new or existing member of MyArtspace. Membership is free, and members can upload an unlimited amount of fine art, music, video and audio narration and create a highly contemporary art viewing experience. Registration for the Miami 2009 competition is $25, but free for members with a premium MyArtspace subscription. The winners will be announced on Friday November 27, 2009. The Aqua Art Miami Art Fair will be held December 3-6, 2009.
The Miami 2009 competition will be juried by a prestigious panel of art critics and curators. This jury panel will be announced separately on October 15th, 2009.
Catherine McCormack-Skiba, the CEO and founder of MyArtspace noted, “the influence of the art fairs on the industry is significant and Miami stands tall amongst all venues globally. With our incredible community of talented contemporary artists, we feel it’s imperative that they be well represented there. We’ve chosen to work with Aqua Art Miami this year, which we think is an excellent venue for our artists. Myspace.com is without parallel in trying to bring recognition and opportunities for contemporary artists from its well-developed social network of more than 60,000 artists in 116 countries.”
"We're proud to have the myartspace Miami 2009 competition winners in our show this year," said Jaq Chartier, Co-Founder of Aqua Art Miami. "The people who come for Art Basel week are on a serious hunt, eager to discover fresh work and artists they've never seen before. You couldn't ask for a better audience for the artists you care about, and Myartspace clearly gets that. We're really looking forward to working together this year."
Artists interested in learning more about the juried competition can do so by visiting http://www.MyArtspace.com/miamibasel.
Aqua Art Miami is a prestigious contemporary art fair that takes place in Miami concurrently with Art Basel Miami Beach, and is a part of the community of exhibitors that define Art Basel Miami Beach . Aqua started in 2005 as an experimental project at the Aqua Hotel in South Beach near Art Basel, and eventually expanded to include a larger booth-style fair called Aqua Wynwood. This year the fair will focus on the Aqua Wynwood location, consolidating the best of both fairs into one exceptional event. Aqua Wynwood opens with a VIP Preview Brunch on Thursday morning, December 3, and the exhibition continues through Sunday, December 6.
Based in Seattle, Aqua's organizers have made it their mission to promote innovative programming from the West Coast as well as the greater USA and abroad, with a particular interest in young dealers and galleries with strong emerging artist programs. A number of new dealers have made their debut at Aqua, as well as other exhibitors and artists who have never shown at an art fair before. For more information on Aqua Art Fair, please see their website at: http://www.aquaartmiami.com.
Thursday, October 01, 2009
The Struggler's Theme
The Struggler's Theme from Himanshu Desai on Vimeo.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Call for Blind Artists in Virginia
Wanted to spread the word for Shirley, a docent at the Muscarelle Museum at William & Mary College in Williamsburg, Virginia:
"I am a docent at the Muscarelle Museum at Wm & Mary College in Williamsburg, VA. I have introduced a tactile tour program and am looking for artists/photographers who are blind or have low vision that can come to Williamsburg to give a presentation, talk about their work and the importance of opening the doors to the aesthetic experience in a museum setting. Because our budget is very low, I need a person nearby, on the east coast. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks, Shirley"
You can contact her via myartspace. Her username is oct2040.
Friday, September 25, 2009
2500 frames per second!
Check this out:
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Gray Area Foundation for the Arts
promo video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ulwcLVzT7w
and their opening ceremony is in two weeks!
When my friend, Gregor, mentioned GAFTA to me, we talked about how it promises to revitalize the Tenderloin district in San Francisco (for those of you outside of SF, the Tenderloin is the city's overt area for in-your-face drugs, crime, and homelessness).
"If the area is going to be taken over by this digital arts megaplaza," I asked, "Where are all of the homeless going to go - pushed out?"
Gregor said yes, it's almost comedic how overt GAFTA is in their YouTube promo video, with even a clip of a homeless person is pushing a grocery cart away.
Anyhow, GAFTA seems pretty exciting. I'm not sure if they are going to produce something that sells to the average consumer, but the average consumer can walk in and ooh and .
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, just a few blocks away in downtown San Francisco, has always included interesting young, digital art, but never on such a focused, dedicated scale as GAFTA - so I wonder what their reaction will be to GAFTA. Perhaps this is a real movement to digital art rather than physical hand-made art. I recently happened to meet with the curators at MoAD (Museum of the African Diaspora), also in downtown SF. They regard themselves as a museum of ideas, rather than objects, and have lots of touch screens or films rather than antiques or relics.
It seems more like a community media center with artists in residence - a place to go for start-ups to collaborate when they have a crazy futuristic project, and for others to touch screens and ooh and ah at the magic.
The workshops will introduce people to tools like Processing.org ("Initially created to serve as a software sketchbook and to teach fundamentals of computer programming within a visual context").
Also, I think what is most fascinating about the exhibitions is that they are all - through the use of technology - able to present different perspectives on our reality: http://www.gaffta.org/2009/08/23/inaugural-exhibition-open/. For example, Camille Utterback and Stamen Design's exhibitions give new ways of looking at the Tenderloin neighborhood itself. This is the epitome of post-post-modernism (the sense that there is no single reality, but infinite perspectives) - and that technology, films, multimedia - can help us tap into the dimensions in-between (like Being John Malkovich's 7 1/2 floor).
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
"Audience" Conference in NYC
Here's the website: http://audienceconf.com/index.php
Anyone going? Tell us if you're going and what brings you there!
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Reminder: Apply for our Art Scholarships! $16,000 CASH
It's FREE to apply!
Just register (free) and submit your work online.
Application Deadline: December 16, 2009
Apply by October 31, 2009, and get FREE PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP (more features on your MyArtSpace.com account. More info at http://www.myartspace.com/premium/)
For more info: www.myartspace.com/scholarships
MYARTSPACE launches 7X24 streaming contemporary art channel
Palo Alto, CA (PRWEB) August 24, 2009 - MYARTSPACE.com, the premier online social network for the contemporary art world, has announced the launch of MYARTSPACE.tv, a site providing live, 24-hour per day streaming contemporary art and music.
Catherine McCormack-Skiba, the founder of MYARTSPACE and CEO noted "With our incredibly rich collection of contemporary art from our 60,000 artists we represent, we have a unique ability to launch rich and interesting new art services to the viewing public. MYARTSPACE.tv allows people to enjoy very high-quality, curated contemporary art in their web browser 24 hours per day. The diversity of work is also unique, with artists from over 116 countries being represented in our community."
The live streaming fine art service is combined with a music playlist constructed on Playlist.com. The service is interactive. Clicking on the art as it streams by allows art appreciators to learn more about the artist and purchase work from them.
Click on the image below to view MYARTSPACE.TV.
Brian Skiba, Chief Technology Officer at CatMacArt Corporation, the producers of the MYARTSPACE site notes "This is a first step in an interesting new direction for contemporary art, and the way in which an audience can interact. Ultimately we see specialty fine art channels being rolled out - for photography, sculpture, mixed media, painting. We also see a variety of platforms and devices from which we can leverage including high-definition television, the iPhone, and other internet-connected devices. And finally, we'll work towards availing dedicated channels for museums and galleries to offer a means of attracting a broader, younger audience to the contemporary art world.".
The streaming art service is available free at MYARTSPACE.TV.
MYARTSPACE.com, the premier online venue for contemporary art, is one of the fastest growing and diverse communities on the internet. Its members include more than 60,000 artists, collectors, galleries and other art world professionals from across the globe, and it currently has on display hundreds of thousands of pieces of fine art. Membership is free and artist can upload their creative work including images, music and video. MYARTSPACE is created and run by CatMacArt Corporation. CatMacArt Corporation is located in Palo Alto, California. www.catmacart.com.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Lowbrow Meets Highbrow
Issue of Juxtapoz Magazine
Cover art by Shepard Fairy
"A frog is either lowbrow or highbrow.In 2007, commenting on the blog PaintersNYC, artist Kelli Williams observed that it's hard to be a Juxtapoz artist "in an ArtForum world." Juxtapoz is a popular magazine dedicated to showcasing contemporary "lowbrow art." It was founded by the artist Robert Williams in 1994. The "ArtForum world" of Kelli William's statement references the magazine of that name, but also the "high art" scene it covers, of which New York City, for the time being, remains an - if not the - epicenter. Until recently, the artwork featured in ArtForum was very different from that seen in the pages of Juxtapoz. Juxtapoz is representative of the Los Angeles art scene, and the U.S. west coast scene more generally, where the aesthetics of pop surrealism, folk art, post-graffiti, or street art are wholly embraced.
If you catch it, it's low. If you order it in a French restaurant, it's high."
-Unidentified chef, from Burkhard Bilger's Noodling for Flatheads
But artwork infused by Juxtapoz's colorful spirit is no longer uncommon in New York galleries. Andrew Schoultz, Tim Biskup, and Jeff Soto, talented west coast artists regularly lauded in the pages of Juxtapoz, today exhibit with the Morgan Lehman and Jonathan Levine galleries, and influential post-graffiti artist Barry "Twist" McGee is represented by the renowned Deitch Projects. Jonathan Levine makes plain his dedication to the post-graffiti aesthetic; his gallery's website states that its mission is to exhibit "work influenced by illustration, comic books, graffiti art and pop imagery." Perhaps it's no longer so hard, then, to be a Juxtapoz artist "in an ArtForum world"?
But, more importantly, does lowbrow art require the affirmation of the "high art" world - for easy contrast, let's call it highbrow art - in order to be considered mainstream or legitimate? If so, what exactly is the cultural significance of highbrow art to the world at large?
Acrylic on wood
12 x 12 inches
The commercial success of books like Beautiful Losers: Contemporary Art and Street Culture and Wall and Piece, the latest offering from the infamous British artist, Banksy, suggest that pop surrealism, post-graffiti, and street art succeed in connecting with the multitudes. On the other hand, it's an uncontroversial fact that highbrow art generally doesn't move the masses (with the exception of its remarkable ability to offend the religious sensibilities of the Christian Right and certain mayors). But highbrow art doesn't simply fail to connect with the general population; the fact is, most folks sneer at, mistrust, or resent ArtForum's world.
Perhaps because they feel beleaguered by popular tastes, many players in the world of highbrow art - artists, gallerists, critics, and curators alike - reject the influx of pop surrealism and post-graffiti flavor. But their objections will inevitably prove inconsequential; as the Borg of "Star Trek" put it, "resistance is futile." Even if some of the more esoteric subcultures of the Juxtapoz arena - Tiki culture, for example - are unlikely to find a toehold in the world of "high art," the graphic influences common to post-graffiti work already inform the paintings of contemporary art world darlings like Dana Schutz, Marcel Dzama, Trenton Doyle Hancock, Ryan McGuinness, Lisa Yuskavage, Yoshitomo Nara, and Jules de Balincourt. (In fact, Dzama and McGuinness have been featured in Juxtapoz; it won't be long before other celebrated highbrow artists are, too. One wonders if the lowbrow label will be applicable for much longer.) And then there are artists like Judith Schaechter, whose stained glass works were lauded in the pages of Juxtapoz years before her work hung in the Whitney Museum or before she received Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships.
"Hyena Snake Comet"
30 x 33 inches
Much of the highbrow resistance to pop surrealism and post-graffiti is rooted in the self-identified elites' distrust of populism. Comic books and strips are intended for mass consumption, but graffiti is unquestionably the most populist of the lowbrow tributaries. No art form has fewer barriers to entry; all you need is a can of spray paint and a little chutzpah. Ask someone knowledgeable about the subject to relate the history of modern graffiti, and you'll likely hear an abridged version, one that begins in the 1970s, in and around New York City's Bronx River Houses, and runs parallel to the development of hip hop. City funding for arts and culture programs was pitifully low at the time, and enterprising teens looked for new ways to entertain and express themselves. As Lady Pink, an influential graffiti artist of the late 1970s and 1980s, explains, graffiti was the most available "forum for free speech."
Of course, the human urge to make marks predates the Bronx River Houses by millennia. Our ancestors depicted their quarry on cave walls and, more recently, citizens of ancient Rome scribbled their political opinions on market stalls (hence the word's etymology, from the Italian graffiare, meaning "to scratch or scribble.") But during the early days of modern graffiti's ascendancy, practitioners prioritized ego over observation or socio-political commentary. The pioneers of the 1970s and 1980s graffiti scenes in New York City and Philadelphia - Taki 183, StayHigh 149, Cat 161, and Cornbread, among others - were primarily known for their "tags," stylized monikers spray painted on walls and subway cars. They vied for renown by tagging as many surfaces as they could, and walls that were difficult to access had a special cache. The competitive behavior of these early graffiti "artists" might be best described as base scent marking, activity essentially indistinguishable from the industry of the bored high school student who scratches "(x) was here" on the wall of the bathroom stall. Fortunately, as more artists entered the nascent graffiti scene, such adolescent "battling" became insufficient impetus; soon, the egotistical tag evolved into something more colorful and complex. Artists added characters, often comic in nature, a result of their limited palettes and time frame, and, before long, these characters evolved into "pieces" (short for masterpieces). The best graffiti artists came to value style and artistry as much as placement.
The conceptual and social strengths of graffiti and street art are rooted in the artists' acceptance of temporality and his or her desire to engage the environment and citizenry directly. As Simon Hattenstone, a features writer for The Manchester Guardian, writes, "Since spotting my first few Banksies I have been desperately seeking out more. They make me smile and feel optimistic about the possibilities of shared dreams and common ownership." Insofar as it is truly democratic, the street artist's approach is fundamentally distinct from that of those who aspire to "high art" success. "Fine artists" are essentially aristocratic in inclination. They are the elites who operate within the context of "high art" institutions; their work is most often viewed in semi-sacred, unlived in spaces, by people who talk about the work in reverent whispers. Street art, by contrast, is viewed by everybody who happens past the artwork. But, today, as the post-graffiti movement sees many of its more celebrated artists entering the "high art" sphere, the populist flavoring of the culture is eroding.
Artwork on West Bank barrier between Israel and the West Bank
Is the aesthetic melting pot a bad thing? The answer depends on your perspective, of course; personally, I'm all for it. Like many contemporary artists, I'm not alone in feeling that my artwork and aesthetic inclinations plant a standard somewhere between the poles of Juxtapoz and ArtForum. Just as I feel torn between my rural roots and the creative community and energy of city life, so too am I drawn to elements of both art orbits, east and west, highbrow and lowbrow. I live and work in New York, so I've cultivated an appreciation for the importance of conceptual heft. But I'm also an erstwhile subscriber to Juxtapoz who, in my youth, eagerly thumbed through the pages of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual, read fantasy novels and comic books, and honed my drawing chops by copying from comic strips. Perhaps I'm biased, then, but it seems that aesthetic commingling introduces hybrid vigor into otherwise "inbred" scenes.
Too many circles of the "high art" world are poisoned by intellectual pretension, obscurantism, and exclusivity. The ArtForum world is principally concerned with auction results and art historical significance. In east coast MFA programs, the mills of the contemporary "high art" world, a common question asked of students is, "Where does your work fit in the historical trajectory?" Indeed, at great cost to social legitimacy, the "high art" world has prioritized originality and artistic genealogy.
Much of the "lowbrow" scene, by contrast, is blighted by the artists' focus on disposable pop culture, their willingness to cozy up to the marketing machine, and their populist posturing. In an interview with Juxtapoz, one young artist said,
"When it comes right down to it, I draw the stuff I like, and people can take it all for whatever they want. I would say that 95 percent is liking big boobs and butts, the other five percent is brain farts that end up in a sketchbook that later ends up as a painting or whatever."Although I wrote down this quotation without recording the artist's name, I do recall appreciating some of his graphic skill. Still, when I'm confronted with such a thoughtless statement, I can appreciate the animus that brooding, theory-oriented types have for lowbrow art. Where is the evidence of this young artist's vocational mindfulness, his rigorous passion, his poetic sensibility? Of course, his defenders would likely praise his candor, but, in truth, he's posturing as much as the bespectacled, black-clad fellow who insists in his jargon-laden artist statement that Jacques Derrida informs all of his output.
Watercolor on paper
14 x 11 inches
Despite haughty sneers from individuals on both sides, it seems to me that the transition that so many post-graffiti artists are making, from the streets to the galleries, could (and should) help create a less sectarian art world. The selfish pretensions of the highbrow art world could be tempered by an influx of no-nonsense, illustrative exuberance, and the lowbrow art world could jettison some of their conceptual superficiality by taking the philosophical and moral obligations of their vocation more seriously. That is, in any case, my hope.
Image credits: Juxtapoz cover image ripped from Rotofugi.com;; Jeff Soto image ripped from the Jonathan Levine Gallery website; Judith Schaechter image ripped from the artist's website; Banksy image ripped from the Brian Sewell Art Directory; Marcel Dzama image ripped from David Zwirner website
(Note: This post appeared concurrently on the art blog, Hungry Hyaena.)
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Chinese Tradtional Art Losing Ground....
As many young Chinese artists turn to modern art forms such as oil painting, sculpture, installation and photography, the future of traditional Chinese painting, despite its history of thousands of years, is facing a crisis, with few young people taking up the art.
See the article at:
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Drawing up battle lines – art gallery takes on Wikipedia
The appearance of some of the world's most famous portraits on a website could create a legal landmark
In her coronation robes, Elizabeth I looks formidable and stately – the Virgin Queen in her pomp, an image to propel rivals into battle. Some 400 years after her portrait was painted, that is precisely what she has done.
Hers is one of more than 3,000 images from the National Portrait Gallery uploaded onto the free internet encyclopedia Wikipedia in April by Seattle-based Derrick Coetzee. The gallery, founded in 1856, responded last week by threatening legal proceedings against the PhD student.
That action unleashed outrage in cyberspace and quickly led to a stand-off between the proponents of free information and cultural institutions wanting to protect one of their few revenue streams – licence fees for reproducing images of their artworks. The row also goes to the heart of an internet revolution which does not recognise borders or national laws.
The gallery has instructed the law firm Farrer and Co, which represents the Queen, to sue Mr Coetzee unless the pictures are removed. They claim that letters to Wikipedia were unanswered. While the portraits are long out of copyright, the photographs are not and, the gallery argues, the digitisation process to create high resolution images has cost it around £1m. They are, they say, therefore entitled to a licence fee.
For many MYARTSPACE artists, their concern of their work showing up on commercial products and other sites without their permission (and without them getting compensated) is a valid concern.
You can read this article by clicking over to the New York Times HERE.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
The art of a recession: Gallery owners struggling
With houses going up for auction, unemployment continuing to rise and the threat of layoffs seemingly ever-present, many gallery owners in art communities such as Scottsdale, Ariz., Santa Fe, N.M., Portland, Ore., and New York City are closing shop, going broke to stay open or drastically changing the way they do business.
For the full article by AMANDA LEE MYERS, Associated Press Writer, click HERE
Monday, July 13, 2009
New UPLOAD Manager rolling in soon
A few points that are important to highlight on the new UPLOAD Manager:
- It provides three ways to upload images -- a "bulk loader" for the premium services members, a rapid multi-file upload for standard users, and of course the Gallery Wizard that many are historically used to using.
- Once images are selected to be uploaded, artists can apply "batch" tags to all the images at once making this much easier.
- One can upload images to an existing gallery, a new gallery, or their image library for later use.
- A new "Video Gallery" is being introduced where users can create a gallery containing just a video for playback.
- MYARTSPACE will introduce some space limitations for standard users for the first time. The aggregate amount of storage space -- including images, videos, music and voice annotation -- will be monitored and have some reasonable limitation assigned to it. Premium Subscribers will have 20GB of storage space available.
We think the introduction of the new UPLOAD manager is the first step in helping make the overall upload and management of the site better. Once we integrate this well, the "ORGANIZER" will be introduced, which allows you to manage your galleries, images, videos and work in one easy spot.
Monday, June 22, 2009
Book Review: Jackie Battenfield's The Artist's Guide - How to Make a Living Doing What You Love
I was recently asked to review Jackie Battenfield's new book, The Artist's Guide - How to Make a Living Doing What You Love. It was such an excellent book that instead of reviewing it, I ended up reading the whole darn thing. Highly recommended, the following is a repost of my review at ArtLOOK:
Jackie Battenfield's new book, The Artist's Guide - How To Make a Living Doing What You Love, is an excellent resource for visual artists at any stage of their career. Battenfield writes in a professional and yet easy manner and provides invaluable information, inspiration and resources on making a successful career in the art world.
Battenfield's words do more than just dictate the "how to" and "why for" of the business end of art. She speaks from the heart and addresses such topics as knowing when you are ready to circulate your art (the difference between nurturing your artistic soul and preparing for business), how to take charge of your professional life, your marketing kit, creating your own opportunities, Introducing your work, building relationships and maintaining your practice.
This former gallery director, artist and teacher has supported herself for over 20 years through sales of her art. She and her husband (also an artist) have successfully paid the bills, purchased life insurance, funded their pension plans, took vacations and put their son through college. Jackie attributes this success to diligent planning and pursuing opportunities. She freely shares this wealth of experience and knowledge with her readers.
Inspiring quotes and advice from dozens of art world professionals are sprinkled throughout the pages providing a "reality check" for the reader. Real life examples and step by step exercises will teach you how to self promote, network, build relationships, broaden your funding resources and explore a wide range of exhibition, commission and sales opportunities beyond the walls of the traditional commercial gallery.
I highly recommend this book as someone who works on a daily basis with artists and as a graphic designer seeking opportunities for myself. Battenfield's advice was helpful and smart. The biggest praise I can give is that in reviewing the book I found a new resource which helped me help a client submit to a call for entry in NYC. This book should be on every artists desk!!
Jackie Battenfield is represented in galleries throughout the United States and in over a thousand collections worldwide. She teaches professional practices at Columbia University and for the Creative Capital Foundation. Please visit her website at www.artistcareerguide.com where you will find information on purchasing the book, interviews, events and speaking engagements.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Site Updates for myartspace.com
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Winners of the myartspace.com London Calling 2009 competition announced!
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
Mona Hatoum at Pallazo Querini Stampalia
The Pallazo Querini Stampalia is currently featuring a solo show of art by artist Mona Hatoum. The show, titled “Interior Landscapes”, is curated by Chiara Bertola and involves 29 works of art. The exhibit will come to a close on September 20th. For more information visit, www.querinistampalia.it/index.php
Friday, June 05, 2009
Robert Rauschenberg at Peggy Guggenheim Collection
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Tighter TWITTER Integration
MYARTSPACE premium service members can define their twitter account (login and password), and MYARTSPACE can automatically post to TWITTER when the user creates a new gallery, posts a new blog entry, posts a new store listing on NYAXE, posts a new event/press release.
This feature is ready and available for MYARTSPACE Premium Services subscribers now.
Personal Blogging... Coming next week to MYARTSPACE
Users can define set up their own visual header, define "highlighted" posts that they want featured, and post an unlimited amount. The product is closely integrated with the rest of MYARTSPACE, so they can, for instance, easily "embed" one of their galleries in the middle of their post.
We expect to roll this capability into production next week.
Art Space Talk: Resa Blatman (Part 3)
They Gather in Such Profusion by Resa Blatman
Resa Blatman: I think that it’s essential to have a web presence today. But my opinion about this may not be fully objective, as I make part of my living designing websites. However, I do believe that it’s important for anyone who wants their work to be easily and quickly accessible to have a website of some sort. It allows the audience to view anartist’s work privately, at their own pace, and without traveling -- I think this is what most people embrace about the web.
BS: Will you be involved with any upcoming exhibits?
RB: Yes. I participate annually in my city’s open studios, which is one of the largest in the States. Somerville Open Studios in Massachusetts is the first weekend in May. Going on now is a small solo exhibit, “Luscious Bird Paintings,” at the Christopher Brodigan Gallery in Groton, Massachusetts until May 10th. After that, my three cut-edge triptych paintings will be on view at two juried shows in Massachusetts: Danforth Museum from June 1-August 1, 2009; and Tufts University Art Gallery, June 3-August 2, 2009.
BS: Do you have any concerns about the art world at this time?
RB: As much as I am concerned about my work and it’s place within society, I try not to dwell too much on the art world. I find that getting too caught up in it only gets in the way of my work. That being said, I do think the recession is not as bad for the art world as many might think. These shifts within the economy have a way of clearing out the brush and leaving the art world to the dedicated artists who continue to make good work with serious intentions.
BS: There have been several stories involving copyright infringement in the mainstream press as of late. What is your stance on copyright? Do you see strong copyright as a reflection of artist rights in general? Or do you feel that copyright restricts creativity? Do you have a stance on this issue?
RB: My thoughts about this go back and forth. I do think it’s important for an artist to have ownership rights over their work, but I also think that we should allow others to borrow from our creations, with credit and limitations. I use photos and books for some of my source materials and without them I would have a difficult time finding the perfect ostrich, bat, or bird to paint.
Lavish Heronry by Resa Blatman
BS: As you know, the economy has been hard. Have you had to change-- or should I say adapt-- your practice due to the economy?
RB: I’ve been lucky. My design business has been busier than usual lately and we have several websites that we’re currently working on, which means I have a little less time to be in the studio at the moment -- one has to work when the work is there. At the same time, I was awarded a few artist grants in the last year and sold several paintings, which has allowed me to continue working as a full-time painter.
BS: Finally, is there anything else you would like to say about your art?
RB: The ideas keep coming and I am very grateful for that.
This concludes my interview with Resa Blatman. To return to Part 1 click, HERE
Take care, Stay true,
Myartspace Blog on Twitter
Art Space Talk: Resa Blatman (Part 2)
Mild Rapture #2 by Resa Blatman
Resa Blatman: My process is quite simple. I think about my work constantly -- while I’m exercising, when I’m driving, and before I go to sleep, it’s always on my mind. For me, this is like sketching. I have a very vivid imagination; I can see what it is I want to paint before I do it. That doesn’t mean that the paintings turn out how I originally imagined them, but this process allows me to dive into a new painting without fear or hesitation. In fact, I’m often thinking about the next painting while I’m working on the current one, and that fuels me to move forward and complete the current work so that I can continue my “visual story.”
I use a lot of source materials for my paintings -- photos, books, animal, fruit, and flower models, and the internet. First, I design the surface edges on the computer and then I send the files to the company that cuts the panels. Once I have the panels back in my studio, I gather all of my source materials and I start drawing out the composition directly onto them -- there is no preliminary sketching beforehand. The painting starts off with one composition, but I frequently change the subject, placement, and color, while I’m working on it. I let myself erase, paint over, and change my mind so that the painting remains fluid despite the careful, tight rendering.
BS: What about other influences? For example, are you influenced by any specific artists?
RB: Yes. I’m a huge fan of and influenced by many artists, particularly John Currin, Tara Donovan, Walton Ford, Julie Heffernan, Martin Johnson Heade, Ernst Haeckel, the Baroque, Hieronymus Bosch, Lucas Cranach, the Elder, early Flemish painting, Pre-Renaissance painting, the Baroque, and Victorian Decorative Art.
BS: So what is the specific message you strive to convey to viewers? Do you adhere to a specific philosophy as far as your work is concerned?
RB: As I mentioned previously, my work is specifically about fertility. This is an issue I have personal epxerience with, and one that has offered me a great deal of creative ideas and energy. I suppose my philosophy is to be honest with myself and with my audience. I can’t escape who I am, what I believe, or what I’ve experienced in my life, which means it’s impossible to divorce myself from my work. This allows me to be personal with my work and subject matter, which drives my concept. However, I do my best to keep irony within my work, and to not take myself too seriously.
Three Flamingos by Resa Blatman
BS: What are you working on at this time? Can you give our readers some insight into your current work?
RB: If you look at my “gallery” on MyArtSpace or check out my website at http://www.resablatman.com/ you can see the cut-edge panel paintings. This is my newest work and the direction I plan to pursue for now. I’ve completed two triptych cut-edge panels (the third, “Lemon Spray,” is nearly complete), and I’m in the process of starting a fourth in this series, which will be approximately 20-30 feet wide and include six or eight panels.
To read Part 3 of my interview with Resa Blatman click, HERE
Take care, Stay true,
Myartspace Blog on Twitter
Monday, June 01, 2009
how to write an artist statement (teaser)
Like making art, there are no steadfast rules to writing artist statements - and even the best of us fail sometimes - but there are of course some decent guidelines one might consider following....
Art work descriptions and statements should be about 300 - 500 words, and strictly address the following:
- What "is" the work? Describe it as an object, installation or situation in a way that enables visual and/or sensual comprehension. This is not what the piece is “about.” I mean it literally / physically: what are your art piece’s individual components and materials, and how do they work together as a whole?
- What do we see or experience? If it's an installation, consider a walk-through, a description of how it looks, sounds, smells, feels (again, not emotionally or conceptually, but physically), and what actions viewers have taken in and around it. If it's a situation, describe the relationships (and power structures) you are intervening in and how participants might perform them. Many works would likely need to address both what we experience and what we do as an audience or participants in front of it / around it / with it. How do viewers relate to the work, to the artist, to each other...?
- What's at stake? Why is this important to you? Why should it be important to me / others? You can briefly address or allude to conceptual issues here, but be specific rather than general. How does the piece itself address these concerns? How do we encounter them in our experience of it, and what value lies in that encounter?
7 guidelines to follow:
- This is not a mystery novel. Start with a one-sentence description that encompasses all of the above to some extent – especially what it is – then unpack each of the listed items as is needed.
Read more and comment at implicit art...
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Spring Exhibition at NYAXE Gallery in Palo Alto, CA
The exhibit opened at 6pm and came to a close at 10pm. A steady flow of gallery visitors were present-- over 100 people were counted during the early hours of the opening. The technology, powerful works of contemporary art, and music set the pace of the environment as cocktails were served. The event was yet another successful example of the meshing between the physical and online art world.
NYAXE Gallery in Palo Alto, CA officially opened on February 26th, 2009. The exhibit on May 21st marks the second exhibit featuring www.myartspace.com members. The represented artists are chosen from a selective-- ongoing --competition that allows members of the myartspace.com community to compete for NYAXE Gallery representation. For more information visit, www.myartspace.com/nyaxegallery.
The competition is free for Premium myartspace.com members to enter. You can learn more about Premium membership on myartspace.com by visiting the following page, www.myartspace.com/premium. You can learn more about the current represented artists by visiting, www.myartspace.com/nyaxegallery/winners
Claes Oldenburg at the Whitney Museum of American Art
The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York is currently featuring a Claes Oldenburg retrospective The exhibition explores Oldenburg’s early career as well as his longtime collaboration with wife Coosie van Bruggen. The retrospective details nearly five decades of Oldenburg’s work.
The sculptor is best known for his public art installations. His work tends to feature very large replicas of everyday objects. Another theme in his work is soft sculpture versions of everyday objects. The exhibit comes to a close on September 6th, 2009. For more information visit, www.oldenburgvanbruggen.com or www.whitney.org
Art Space Talk: Resa Blatman (Part 1)
Resa Blatman: I have a lot of art school experience under my belt. After high school, I went to the Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida, where I majored in “fine arts.” That meant I had a well-rounded art education doing everything from etching to stone sculpture. After Ringling, I moved to New York for a couple of years, where I had several jobs and painted during my free time. Then I left for Florence, Italy, where I studied at the Studio Art Centers International (SACI) for one year and lived in Florence for another two years, with a side excursion to London for seven months.
At SACI I spent my time painting, primarily portraits. I had a memorable learning experience, particularly with portrait painter and teacher Manfredi, who taught me to see a person’s character and exaggerate it in order to make the portrait look like the model. The director of SACI, Jules Maidoff, was instrumental in helping me move paint around
more freely and with more confidence.
After my year at SACI, I worked for a mask-maker named Agostino Dessi, who owns a little mask shop called “Alice” in the center of Florence. This job let me stay in Italy for two more years. Agostino taught me the craft of mask-making, and skills related to selling artwork, which were very useful to me later on.
My work got stuck and stodgy -- I couldn’t think of what to paint next and it seemed that my desire to paint had come to an end -- it was no longer a productive or fulfilling relationship. Studying graphic design was a welcome change for me, and on reflection, I believe it was one of the best career choices I’ve ever made. It taught me new skills (especially computer skills) and gave me confidence to start my own business. I made a good living while still doing work that was creative and enjoyable.
The following year I applied to the same local grad programs as I had previously, was accepted by three of them, and chose Boston University. My experience there was mixed; being the oldest student made me stand out, but not always in the way I intended. Nevertheless, I worked diligently in the mostly studio-based program, which was one of the toughest educational experiences of my life. Despite the difficult crits and the personal and artistic challenges, I’m extremely grateful for my graduate school experience -- my work continually evolved and my painting skills and conceptual abilities
I was in a class with highly talented peers and the painter and instructor John Walker, and they taught me more about painting than I could ever have imagined. By the time I was near the end of the grad program I realized that I no longer wanted to teach full-time; rather, I wanted to paint full-time again. I decided then that I would supplement my painting career with graphic design, allowing me to pursue both fields and take advantage of my design skills to enhance my paintings. I graduated from BU in 2006.
RB: This may sound a bit clichéd, but when I was a small child the grownups around me would ask, “What do you want to be when you grown up?” And I would consistently say “I want to be a artist.” Eventually, I learned to say it correctly but my desire never changed. No matter what other things I tried, or waters I tested, I always knew I would be an artist.
BS: Can you tell us about your art? Give us some insight into the thoughts behind your art.
RB: As you might imagine with so many different art school experiences, and a lot of years in between, my work was initially quite different from the way it is now. That said, I notice some things in my current work that harken back to my childhood drawings and paintings, and the tight painting I did in my 20s. While we can’t help but be influenced
by our peers and historical and contemporary artists, and the time in which we live, I believe some things about us never change. Our work and our lives move in circles that we continually begin and end. The ideas I have, and use now, in my work are often ideas that I thought about years ago -- these ideas never really leave, but crop up here and there when they become useful to me.
My current work is about fertility, abundance, sensuality, and an over-the-top beauty. The paintings combine decorative patterns with flora and fauna. The cut-edge surfaces are an extension of the painting itself, allowing the work to feel as if it is growing out of control.
To read Part 2 of my interview with Resa Blatman click, HERE
Take care, Stay true,
Myartspace Blog on Twitter