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Showing posts from 2016

Winter Studio Update

Fall/Winter Studio Update 2016
Greetings Friends & Colleagues,
Happy holidays! I wish you well as 2016 comes to a close. I want to share what’s new, upcoming events, and recent developments and directions in my studio practice.  Notably, I’ve been working on severalsmall art journals this winter as a way to unwind. Sometimes, in the middle of trying to create work that speaks to social, cultural, and political issues, I need to take a break from big issues and just paint. For me, stepping away helps the work relax and allows new pathways to take form. Have a look,
If you’re not already aware, I filled the early fall season with several shows and an exhibition that I self-curated. I am glad to share with you some news coverage and photos related to a couple events. Thank you to everyone who attended and also to those who showed their support in spirit. Below are links and images:
·Contemporary Art Exhibit Probes African American Identity,” The Austin Statesman (http://www.mystatesman.c…

Cut Ups!

Collage for collage sake!

These collages are from my torn paper journal, I created them out of found paper scraps. What I love about them is that they owe nothing to any social movement or cultural political structure and they don't have to be perfect.  I did 128 of these small creatures in an effort to wind down from my last exhibition. I think it is important to find space for your work to relax. One more week then I am back to work screen printing, pasting and cutting.
Red hand 5x5 collage on paper
Heavy is the head that wears the crown, 5x5, Collage on Paper
Sunday Morning 5x5, Collage on Paper

New Rules.

Whew, I can't believe that I have to create new rules for my studio practice, but some time back I started to feel stranded in the artistic hole I had dug for myself. So, in order to create some new energy (pathways) I wrote some "new rules" to work by while I'm creating my art. Yeah, It sounds dumb, but I was surprised by how often I looked to that list when doubt or fear creep into my practice. It helps, if nothing else its something to aim my brush at when I loose my cool.

Check out this article:When You’ve Hit The Artistic Wall: Frustration and Creativity By: Lee Hammond | August 27, 2014


Sunday and everyday.
"An artist’s duty, as far as I’m concerned, is to reflect the times. I think that is true of painters, sculptors, poets, musicians. As far as I’m concerned, it’s their choice, but I CHOOSE to reflect the times and situations in which I find myself. That, to me, is my duty. And at this crucial time in our lives, when everything is so desperate, when everyday is a matter of survival, I don’t think you can help but be involved. Young people, black and white, know this. That’s why they’re so involved in politics. We will shape and mold this country or it will not be molded and shaped at all anymore. So I don’t think you have a choice. How can you be an artist and NOT reflect the times? That to me is the definition of an artist."
Nina Simone

Fall art season

This and that!

Getting ready for the fall art season...

Is that "really" Art?

I am a artist that learns from other artists and respects all types of work, that's just how I roll! Yesterday, I had a great talk with one of my artist friends and we happen on a subject of hierarchy when it comes to what materials one uses to do their work and how that work is sometimes viewed.
 I shared my experience in Grad school when some "other" grad in my final year commented that I could push out as many collages as I wanted to in a single afternoon because... and ... he stop short and made a face. What?? He followed it by saying "He struggled with his paintings" Wait what?? and I don't! I get it. I use to spent hours on my figurative oil paintings and when my work was displayed with primitive art and artists my nose was up in the air. I soon realized that they were doing what they loved just like me. Creating visual art is hard work, irregardless of the medium, media or form you work in.
I've had people come up and tell me that performance art…

It maybe fun, but it's still hard work.

While this summer will be busy full of frustrations, art making and studio catastrophes, I thought I would kick off my art summer art practice with a free children's art workshop for the aabf. I was surprise to find out that the prep work is just as intense as cutting, collaging and painting my own collage work. The kids enjoyed the workshop and so did the parents.  great job!

Feeding the beast!

I really don't get to travel that much, so when I go I definitely try to absorb as much as possible. I meet as many artists and curators as I can, visit as many galleries and museums as I can afford to see. Because, it's important, as artist we need to feed the beast, the machine that fuels and generates the work we produce. Normally, after these types of trips I want to remember everything and forget nothing. It never truly last, but I can see it later in my work ... the lengthening of ideas.
Every time I write one of these blog post I am reminded of just how important it is to broaden your practice. Residences, art lectures, openings, art conversations and artists retreats are key! If you think that it's just about the physical act of creating then you are missing out on some vital components of your practice.
I met with an amazing curator while in New York who talked about how to function in the art world and not get caught up in the minutia that surrounds it, to know w…


The hand!

Like most artist, I have created a large amount of paintings and drawings in almost every medium and surface out there. Now that my work has transition into multilayered collages on paper lately, I have been asked, why don't I see more of your hand in the work? Really, because my hand is in the work, it's in it every time I cut out an images, apply medium or spend hours on research trying to make these assemblages flow together seamlessly. You may not see lots of painted faces and bodies, but that's coming. At this point in my practice growth, development, environment and research are at the top of my list.
Figuring out what's next for an artist is hard for anyone to predict and as much as I bitch and moan about my work I can see the bigger picture. I know that all work[especially mine] requires depth, time and rigor so believe me "my hand" has always been apart of the new work. Check out Jerry's 2013 rant about painting!…

The "Agony and the Ecstasy" of being an artist

The agony and the ecstasy of being an artist is the most frustrating thing that one can experience.  There are moments when everything is going so well in your art practice you think it will never end, only to have the floor fall from under your studio. It's moments like these when I wonder why do artists put up with this life? Surely, it's not about the money, because most of the time there is no money. Every artist I know wants to be successful both monetarily and artistically like any sane person in a profession looking to move up. But are we a little insane to keep going year after year enduring rejection after rejection and months of plenty and years of starvation? Because we[I] continue to do it, then my answer must be yes! Artists just don't create art... we are art! It's a part of us, it's who we are and because we suffer financially, we are fragile! And as a consequence of that fragility we are easily irritated [maybe that just me], never truly understood,…

You have to have some doubts.

Preparing for a show is always full of stress and doubt. There's always a bit of uncertainty that surrounds the process. Packing and unpacking, hanging and labeling or should talk or just stand here. Will the work be accepted or will anyone even show up!
Being an artist is more than the act of creating, that's why its called "Artwork"!  Last night, my solo show open in San Antonio and while it was greeted with cheer and smiles I can't wait to see and hear what people have to say or write about the new work. I took a lot of chances ... even though that's what I'm supposed to do with my work.  Now, that cynical monster (doubt) is in my studio. I'll kick his ass out later, but for today he's my sparring partner.

Recently, I read an article where Jerry Saltz gave students ten tips on what it takes to live as an artist. Check it out the link below, he has some great advice.…

Studio day... Chicken Gizzards?

Getting into the studio these days have been extremely hard, with trying to finish grant apps, work and just life, but I managed to get in for a few hours today. Having some problems with materials and how to used them. Spent way too many hours on that!
 Ugh, so I decided to go old school and pick up a pencil and draw it out. Also, started on my consumption pieces.. stay tuned.