Art Silicon Valley San Francisco just wrapped up on Sunday. I was able to catch the last day of this international art fair held at the San Mateo Event Center and was really impressed (brace yourself, this will be a BIG post and if something really interests you, click away on highlighted names, it’s all very rich in links! There was so much to see but I was delighted to discover that a lot of my favorite work was being represented by Bay Area Galleries!
Interactive paint ball art at the entrance to the fair.
Girls with Guns….
Los angeles artist, Michael Torquato DeNicola, represented by Amstel Gallery of Amstererdam / New York had his mixed media on fiberglass surfboards on exhibit…. Rockstar was the name of the one on the left.
Korean artist, Mari Kim, represented by Shine Artists London had her ultra chrome ink prints on canvas of Frida Red, Breakfast at Tiffnay’s, Amy Winehouse, Coco Chanel Purple on display. She kinda made dolls out of these powerhouse women… the feminist in me says no, no, no! but the little girl in me says yes, yes, yes!
I was enchanted by the Korean art at Art Silicon Valley – very feminine and ethereal!
Here are two examples, Ideal World (above) and Burning Flowers II (below) by Korean-American artist, Koh Sang Woo, represented by the Wanrooij Gallery of Amsterdam. This artist shoots performance art then prints the negative in reverse – no photoshop! I love how the dark tangle of hair turns into these glowing orbs of light!
Gallery Tableau, Seoul had a number of interesting pieces on exhibit, full of shine, sparkle and flowers.
Pil-Hyun Park’s lenticular photograph, Dream of Angel for instance had flights of butterflies and petals moving over the highly romanticized imagery as you walked by.
Kyung Ja Kim’s mixed media pieces Nature’s Rhythm features sparkling peonies floating over musical scores and nature imagery.
Yong-Rae Kwon’s stainless steel on canvas pieces (including Parma Pink in Light) used reflective light as the medium hitting of the metal pigmented disks as though they were fish scales under water.
Which brings me to another use of scales but this time to create imagery. San Franciso artist, Peter Combe, represented by Andrea Schwartz Gallery of San Francisco used hardware store paint swatches to create Old Gandhi and Young Gandhi (detail above). The effect is mesmerizing, much like the chatoyance of mother of pearl. I love this process of repurposing common, discardable materials to create something so elevated and refined!
A similar technique of using small bits of colorful objects to create new imagery was used in developing this piece with glass cabs covering little scraps of colorful paper, with text and pattern (I’m afraid I didn’t catch the artist or the gallery).
Using quite the opposite process, Dickson Schneider makes digital prints, based on his collages of interesting papers (including vintage Japanese comics) which he punches holes in, letting colored layers show through. He then crops and enlarges little sections from these collages transforming the imagery into something quite abstract but which retains some of the spirit from the original materials.
Dickson Schneider had his digital prints and collages at the Tmoro Projects of Santa Clara.
I adored the simplicity and unique, almost “drone” perspective of this painting by Israeli artist, Maya Gold, Untitled, #1.
Another piece which was very subtle but highly textured was this undulating relief by Jessica Drenk, a Montana artist now living in Florida, represented by the Adah Rose Gallery of Washington DC (Kensington MD.)
Pieces by Jessica Drenk and Joan Bellmar presented by the Adah Rose Gallery.
Chilean born artist, Joan Bellmar’s (pronounced Juan), also represented by the Adah Rose Gallery, had some fabulous mixed media works on paper on exhibit. With a combination of deep velvety matte blacks and reflective metallic surfaces, these pieces felt like some kind of exquisite Indian miniatures of interplanetary schematics.
I have been in love with Texas based, Cara Barer’s manipulated book photographs for years now and I was over the moon to see one in person! For me they transform the discarded book, with all it’s implications, into something quite alive and breathing, an afterlife of sorts. Andrea Schwartz Gallery of San Francisco is representing her and I was thrilled to learn that she has an upcoming show there this November 18 through December 18!
The Conversation was an exhibition of interdisciplinary work by artists, scientists and composers from UC Davis curated by Tim Hyde. This cross pollination of ideas from research in very different fields produced some incredibly fascinating and highly engaging pieces, once you had some access points into the work. James Angello, Adjunct Instructor at California State University, Sacramento walked me through some of my favorite pieces….
I was initially attracted to this piece by landscape artist, Hearne Pardee, by the contradiction of a mirror reflecting a void. It reminded me of a giant piece of mourning jewelry. James Angello informed me that this piece by was based on the artist’s research into Claude glass, a devise that was used in early landscape painting to abstract and simplify the tones and colors in the reflected image. I love an object that you can appreciate on a surface level but which becomes so much more once you dig a little deeper.
In another piece that would have left me wondering if I didn’t have a guide, I learned that scientist Michael Turelli and composer Pablo Ortiz collaborated in these seemingly unrelated works in which the discovery that bacteria from fruit flies, injected into mosquitos can prevent the transmission of Dengue fever! This research breakthrough was symbolized by the bottle of living fruit flies and inspired the accompanying score for violin – Flight of the Flies in the Bottle!
In Code and Noise, another exhibit curated for the fair by Christine Duval, artists from the Bay Area, Chicago, New york, China and Japan were chosen who work with software producing pieces that look at data collection as it pertains to art, memory, and environment. Simon Pyle’s Selfie Generator (above and below) documented it’s viewers.
North Carolina based artist, Mitchell Lonas, represented by Sense Fine Art, had a series of delicate feathers incised from aluminum. They glowed against their matte ground.
Pezhman, represented by Lawrence Cantor Fine Art of Los Angeles, exhibited several Phoria pieces of emulsion transfer and encaustic on board. The wax stood up from the image of trees in long thin wafers that acted like a louver, obscuring or revealing the scene depending on your position. The effect was rather poetic, like snow or rain or fog or perhaps the loss or return of a memory.
I had the pleasure of meeting San Francisco based artist,Elizabeth Barlow, represented by Gallerie Citi of Burlingame. Her “portraits in absentia” are still lives of personal possessions that paint a portrait of their owners. Her work is meticulous, flawless realism that is embued with a sense of fun and lots of personality!
New York born, currently living in Belgium, Cole Morgan, represented by Caldwell Snyder of San Francisco, had his mixed media painting on canvas, Bleu Moons on exhibit. I haven’t figured out why I’m drawn to it, something about the rhythm of these colorful specimens growing like mushrooms in rows or like birds on a wire or like notes in a score. There seems to be a specific order to this playful, non-representational piece that is intriguing.
I was happy to run into Los Gatos sculptor, David Middlebrook, represented by The McLoughlin Gallery of San Francisco! He had several works on exhibit. Carbon, (above and below) a cast dinosaur egg and cardboard box, ponders carbon as the building blocks of life.
David Middelbrook’s sculpture, The Game is a playfully masked look at the effectiveness of the American safety net.
Galerie 55 Bellechasse of Paris
As I became over saturated with art, my documentation of what I was seeing became quite spotty – I couldn’t tell you what the following galleries were!
Finally, I caught a great panel discussion on Art and Philanthropy with Deborah Rappaport, Christine Sherry and Emiko Ono, the last of a series of talks given at the fair over the course of the weekend. Hosted by the San Francisco Art Dealers Association, this discussion was oriented to thinking out of the box in supporting a healthy arts ecosystem which will continue to support artists and inspire the community at large.
It was great to see the kind of work that was making it to this type of international art fair (all though I didn’t really indicate how many blockbuster big names were there or show all the T&A work that wasn’t appealing to me in the least. The truth is there wass something that should appeal to just about everyone at the fair. These are just my picks.
It was also great to see which galleries were choosing to participate.
Sign me up for next year!