Artsy on Film: (Untitled)

Mr. Forager and I take turns choosing the films we watch together.  So hopefully for every documentary about beer or politics, I get a turn at an artsy flick!  Last weekend, we gave (Untitled) a viewing and although as a movie I didn’t find it anything to shout about, I did find the portrayal of the art world and its archetypes, hierarchies, pretensions, and perceptions really interesting.

AOF_Untitled movie poster

 

Adam Goldberg, an actor I’ve always loved since his turn as the too-good-to-be-true-turned-crazy roommate to Chandler Bing on Friendsstars as a struggling avant garde composer who falls down the rabbit hole of the contemporary art world.  Goldberg is the archetypical brooding starving artist, while his brother, played by Eion Bailey, is a “commercial” artist whose work is selling to a certain type of buyer, yet he longs for critical validation.  Enter love interest/contemporary gallery owner Marley Shelton.

Adam Goldberg as Adrian Jacobs, photo by Parker Film Company/Samuel Goldwyn Films

Adam Goldberg as Adrian Jacobs, photo by Parker Film Company/Samuel Goldwyn Films

Shelton’s Chelsea gallerist with her ubiquitous collection of trendy, non-prescription glasses embodies the gallerists’ struggle between the work that sells and the work seen as innovative, evocative, and important.  While these two aren’t always mutually exclusive, there is often an art world snobbery that comes about when work is commercially successful or decorative rather than intellectual, isn’t there?

Marley Shelton_Untitled_Parker Film Company:Samuel Goldwyn Films'

Marley Shelton as gallery owner Madeleine Gray, photo by Parker Film Company/Samuel Goldwyn Films

In addition to the main characters, the film also includes art world archetypes such as The Collector Who Will Buy Anything the Gallerist Tells Him To, The Maurizio Cattelan/Jeff Koonsish Artiste, The Artist Who Makes Art Out of Nothing ( but who are we to tell him it’s not? ), The Consultant With an Eye For Work People Actually Want to Buy and Live With, and of course, the Supportive Parents of Artists, who let’s face it, often don’t have a clue what exactly it is you do, they just want you to eat.

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Zak Orth and Marley Shelton as Collector & Gallerist, photo by Parker Film Company/Samuel Goldwyn Films

Are the characters in the film stereotypical and a bit caricature-ish?  Absolutely.  Is there truth behind each one?  Most definitely.  Anyone who’s been around the business of art for any length of time has likely encountered some or all of these types.  But I think the film successfully gives us a glimpse into the humanity of these archetypes– how they struggle against who they are expected to be and as some accept who they actually are.  As there are millions of artists, so are there millions of opinions on what art is.  And there is room for all.

All images by Parker Film Company/Samuel Goldwyn Films.

 

 

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In the Atmosphere: Mimi Ko

It’s so difficult to capture the feeling of a place, a moment, a mood.  Sometimes I get so caught up in the beauty of moment that I forget to snap a photo or more often, I don’t want to take myself out of the moment to grab the camera.  New York photographer Mimi Ko creates an ambience of feeling in each captured click of her camera.

Mimi Ko Mimi Ko

Though her subjects are occasionally dressed in period garb, there is a timelessness to the spells she is weaving.  The shadows and soft light create a quiet moodiness and feeling of anticipation.

Mimi Ko

With each image, she is letting us into a small part of the story.  The possible narrative is only one element in the composition, the scenes she is setting are more about what isn’t being said rather than what is.

Mimi Ko Mimi Ko

Want to see more of Mimi Ko’s work?  Please visit the artist’s website.

All images via the artist’s website.

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Wear The Artsy: Kokopelli by Ally Burguieres

Summer always feels like the perfect time to bring out the graphic ethnic prints, comfy sandals, and color, color, color!  Living an artsy life means showing your artsy spirit in everything you do– including how you present yourself to the world through the clothes you wear.  Wanna channel your inner kokopelli?  This ensemble, inspired by this month’s Featured Artist Ally BurguiresKokopelli painting is perfectly comfy and colorful– perfect for an afternoon of gallery hopping in Santa Fe!

Wear the Artsy_Ally Burguieres

 

art | Kokopelli by Ally Burguieres

necklace | Formosa 4 by Jessica Light

tee | Trapeze Baseball Tee at Anthropologie

clutch | Farrah Studded Foldover Clutch at Citrine

skirt | Alopa Maxi Skirt at Anthropologie

sandals | Masika Beaded T-Straps at Anthropologie

Doesn’t a skirt like that just make you want to sashay when you walk?!  Or maybe do a wee little kokopelli dance. ;-)  This pairing just makes my little artsy heart sing!

All sources linked above.

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Vanishing Nature: Myong Stebbins

For Mr. Forager and I, the natural world plays a big role in who we are, what strengthens and calms us. Getting out among the trees and streams renews our energy and every time we go, we are reminded how precious it is. The work of Berkeley artist Myong Stebbins captures that transportive feeling of our cherished natural world.

Yeonkkoch II by Myong Stebbins

Yeonkkoch II, mixed media on paper, 29.5×24.5

New Morning by Myong Stebbins

New Morning, mixed media on paper, 22.75×17

Stebbins’ soft, translucent layers mimic the filtered light to be found deep in the forest. The isolated flora could be seen as a reinterpretation of scientific specimen drawings. Like dried and pressed petals, the flowers have a sense of papery fragility.

Morning Calm II by Myong Stebbins

Morning Calm II, mixed media on paper, 14×18

Whenever we are out in the woods or beside the water, I try to capture the magic with my camera, but somehow, the lens never seems to do justice to the mystical beauty of the landscape.  In paint, Myong Stebbins has captured that essence that is so fleeting.

Kibun II by Myong Stebbins

Kibun II, oil on canvas, 24×32

Echo by Myong Stebbins

Echo, acrylic on paper, 31×38.5

Want to see more of Myong Stebbins’ gorgeous work?  Please visit the artist’s website and the websites of her representing galleries, Pryor Fine Art and Bryant Street Gallery.

New Morning and Morning Calm via the Pryor Fine Art website, other images via the artist’s website.

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Artsy Spot: Seattle Art Museum

Every new place Mr. Forager & I go, I try to hit the local art museum.  Not only because I think it’s important to patronize local art resources ( artsy duh ), but I also find them to be an interesting gauge of the local tastes and what’s important to the surrounding culture.  After being in Seattle for six weeks, we finally ventured to the Seattle Art Museum last week.

Seattle Art Museum exteriorIn addition to their current special exhibition, Future Beauty ( more on that in a separate post ), there were a few other intriguing exhibitions on display.  I was especially excited to see 50 Works for 50 States, selections from the Herb and Dorothy Vogel collection.

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[ Codex Morales Braccio Sermugnano by Michael Goldberg and Untitled by Tony Smith ]

I am continually amazed by the collection this couple put together on a modest income!  Truly inspiring to anyone who is intimidated by the prospect of collecting artwork.  The Vogels collected many smaller works and works on paper, making them more financially accessible but allowing them to build an enviable collection. Such a great example to follow!

One of the things that impressed me the most about the SAM experience was the thoughtfulness given to how each exhibition was displayed and how the galleries interacted with each other.  Glimpses of work seen not just within each exhibition but from one gallery to another allow the work to relate and interact in a way that allows the viewer’s eye to flow naturally throughout the space.

Thicket by Martin Puryear[ Thicket by Martin Puryear ]

A delightful surprise was the small show currently on display in the Knight Lawrence Gallery, In a Silent Way, “a quiet reflection on African American identities and histories”.  This small gallery is tucked in a corner of the museum, away from the crowds and bustle of the larger galleries, which was perfectly fitting for such a thoughtful group of works.  The palette of the show was almost exclusively black and white, a subtle nod to the subject matter, but each piece filled with subtext of what it means to evolve as a person of African descent in America.

Rashid Johnson at Seattle Art Museum

From the museum’s permanent collection, an exhibition of mid-twentieth century work, From Abstract Expression to Colored Planes, features superstars of the era such as Frank Stella, Jackson Pollock and Helen Frankenthaler.  The progression of that era of modern art is always fascinating– you can literally see the artists deconstructing and reconstructing the meaning of form across time.  It is without a doubt one of my favorite periods of art history!

Helen Frankenthaler at Seattle Art Museum[ contemplating Frankenthaler ]

In keeping with the special exhibition’s focus on fashion, I was especially drawn to the work of Yinka Shonibare, whose Nuclear Family installation shows us a “traditional” family dressed in the structure of Victorian garb in textiles reminiscent of modern Africa.  In a different, but no less interesting textile sculpture, Walter Oltmann‘s Caterpillar Suit mixes two destructive species, the caterpillar and the conquistador, while exposing their vulnerabilities and tenuous existences.

Yinka Shonibare at Seattle Art Museum

[ Nuclear Family by Yinka Shonibare ]

Caterpillar Suit III by Walter Oltmann[ Caterpillar Suit III by Walter Oltmann ]

I love the way the Seattle Art Museum is blurring the lines between ancient and modern, leading the visitor down familiar paths only to introduce them to something new and exciting.  Can’t wait to see what else is in store!

All photographs by Artsy Forager.

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Paper Cuts: Atelier Bingo

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with collage.  My first college art professor loved collage and it figured heavily in her basic drawing classes.  At the time, I found the cutting, arranging, and pasting pretty tedious.  I was more of a thrown some paint around a canvas kind of art student.. but I did love how flexible a collage composition could be.  In their work, French artistic duo Max and Adele of Atelier Bingo utilize collage, gouache, ink, screen print AND digital media to create abstract compositions as expressive as any painting.

Atelier Bingo

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Atelier Bingo
The flattened panes of bright color immediately reminded me of the famed collages of Henri Matisse– his Blue Nude remains one of my all time favorite pieces of art, ever.  The layering of such simplistic shapes assists our eyes in completing the composition.  No details are needed– we are allowed to fill in the blanks– but only by choice.

Atelier Bingo

Atelier Bingo
The flat planes of color are mixed playfully with pattern, keeping our eyes moving across the plane and helping us to add to the story our eyes are concocting along the way.

Atelier Bingo

Want to see more work from Atelier Bingo?  Of course you do!  Check out their website, Tumblr and Facebook page.

All images via the artists’ website.  Artist found via It’s Nice That.

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This Artsy Life: Weekend 27 [ Sunny Seattle Days ]

The weather in Seattle was absolutely perfect this weekend! Bright and sunny skies punctuated by cool breezes meant there were no excuses for staying home. So Mr. Forager and I grabbed our coffee and continued our island tour around Seattle, taking a ferry across the Puget Sound to spend the day exploring beautiful Bainbridge Island. Still think I could totally love island living!

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And then we came back to the beauty of the Seattle skyline.. *sigh* Is this a spectacular city or what?! Want to get more glimpses into This Artsy Life? Follow me on Instagram!

All images by Artsy Forager.

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In Public: Scott Duce

One of my favorite things about Seattle, or any big city for that matter, is the people watching. Anywhere we go, there is always such an intriguing array of humanity to be observed! New York artist Scott Duce must agree, because his latest series, In Public, focuses on observations of urban individuals.

Pink Stripes by Scott Duce

Pink Stripes, oil on panel, 12×12

Woman With Flowers by Scott Duce

Woman With Flowers, oil on panel, 12×12

Walking in a big city, you definitely get a sense of being on display, but then there is also a strange contradictory feeling of the ability to melt into the crowd. Duce’s choice to isolate each figure against a monochromatic background serves to call attention to the specialness of each individual and the uniqueness of each moment.

Skinny Man by Scott Duce

Skinny Man, oil on panel, 12×12

Summer Stop by Scott Duce

Summer Stop, oil on panel, 12×12

As we each move through life, we do not do so in a bubble. We are one of many, each individual an important part of the the entire sum.

Fashion Runner 4 by Scott Duce

Fashion Runner 4, oil on panel, 12×12

Want to see more of Scott Duce’s work? Please check out his website.

All images via the artist’s website. Artist found via Hidell Brooks Gallery.

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Design Foraging: The Object Enthusiast

In our traveling, some of the things I’ve missed most have been my beautiful functionals.  What’s a beautiful functional, you say?  It’s an object that serves a purpose, while still being a bit of eye candy.  Like my gorgeous carnival blue glass jars that sit in my bathroom, or a pretty little dish at the kitchen sink to corral rings and such.  We’re having our pretties shipped from Florida soon and I can’t wait to see them all again!  Until then, I’m totally drooling over these beautiful functionals by Emily Reinhardt aka The Object Enthusiast.

Porcelain Ring Dishes

Porcelain Ring Dishes

Gray Teardrop Vase with Gold Dots

Gray Teardrop Vase with Gold Dots

White and Gold Mini Faceted Vessel

White and Gold Mini Faceted Vessel

Spotted Vessel with Gold Brush Strokes

Spotted Vessel with Gold Brush Strokes

Mint and Copper Ball Vase

Mint and Copper Ball Vase

Emily’s pieces are each handmade and painted, each so pretty and unique.  She’s moving in mid-July, so now is the perfect time to snatch up one of these lovelies at 20% off in her Etsy shop!  Just use the coupon code SUMMER20 when you check out.  I must admit, I am seriously tempted!

All images via the artist’s Etsy shop.  Artist found via Beautiful Hello.

 

 

 

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Have an Artsy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day to all the US Artsies!  It’s always been the artist’s job to be the visual voice of each generation.  Whether that means celebrating what we love most about our country or being a creative outlet for independent critical thought, each artist sees the world with their own unique vision.
Independence collage

[ clockwise, from top left: Title unavailable by Steve Williams | Wash by Robert Rauschenberg | Americat by Ally Burguieres, July’s Featured Artist! | Three Flags by Jasper Johns | Flag With Legs by Andy Warhol | Last Call by Sarah Ashley Longshore

As we celebrate freedom today, let’s each have our own Artsy Independence Day by throwing off the shackles of whatever is holding us back.  Have a great one, Artsies!  Mr. Forager & I are headed to the Seattle Art Museum today for a little Artsy Independence of our own.  More on our visit soon!

All image sources linked above.

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