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New Work by Jennie Ottinger

November 15th, 2010 · 2 Comments

Jennie Ottinger has a solo show, Due By, at Johansson Projects in Oakland in which she crafts a new visual experience of the Classics. Even without the full context of the show (which the quote below provides), Jennie’s paintings grab you and don’t let go. There is something so honest and human about her work – the crude and sometimes uglier side of people, peppered with a heavy dose of wit. She is one of my favorite contemporary artists.



In Due By, Jennie Ottinger crafts a canonical library stripped down to the barely-there essentials. There is a haunting affect to Ottinger’s collection of newfangled classics; perhaps it is the quiet tick tock of our own mortality, urging us to read the greats before it is too late. To help us with our timely mission, the books’ insides are cut out and replaced with far more entertaining summaries. Her humorous and brusque adaptations of the stories themselves let readers accomplish the once impossible mission of ‘getting’ War and Peace in a whopping five minutes flat… – Johansson Projects

Scene from To Kill A Mockingbird


Scene from Death of a Salesman


Scene from Farewell to Arms

Benicia Gantner @ Walker Contemporary

November 5th, 2010 · No Comments

I love Benicia Gantner and find it fascinating how her work has changed over time. Just a few years ago her work was uber-graphic, kaleidoscopic and abstracted like the painting below from 2006. She’s clearly developed a maturity in her work and a more subtle way to convey her ideas of nature and the material world. I love the return to more natural, organic forms.

Gantner’s show at Art Hound favorite Walker Contemporary opens tonight. Here’s what the artist had to say about her new body of work.

The reductive landscapes that define my work are rooted in my experience of the natural world, yet manifest as images that are wholly unnatural- flattened, simplified spaces, saturated with color, and populated with both abstract and recognizable organic forms… These imagined spaces are like flashes of a dream, or déjà vu—both familiar and alien…

By using industrial “man-made” materials like acrylic and vinyl, I reinforce the idea that our experience of the natural world is infused with artifice and largely synthesized. I splice and graft organic forms together, creating new hybrid forms…

The work is bittersweet. I present imagined spaces burgeoning with life, often within a seemingly vacant, desolate quietude. I affirm the possibility of regeneration of the natural world, as I invent forms that explore the genius of survival and adaptation…

“Flourish” Opens in Minneapolis

October 23rd, 2010 · 6 Comments

Flourish at Minneapolis Institute of Arts opened last night with new work by Jennifer Davis, Erika Olson Gross, Terrence Payne and Joe Sinness. This show looks amazing! Sigh. I would love to see it in person. I’m constantly impressed by how much great art there is in Minneapolis! Update: many of the pieces are now up for view online.

Here are some gems from the show…

Terrence Payne

Jennifer Davis


Erika Olson Gross


Joe Sinness

This Weekend: $99 Show & DUMBO Open Studios

September 24th, 2010 · No Comments

There’s some really cool stuff going on this weekend both in NYC and Minneapolis. So if you’re in either of these cities take note!

The concept for this show is just so awesome! I really wish I could attend myself. Hundreds of artists donate 5 x 7″ work for the show which benefits The Soap Factory, a Minneapolis non-profit for emerging art. All pieces sell for $99 and are only signed on the back. Part of the fun is that you don’t know who made what until after the art is purchased. As The Soap Factory asks “Can you spot an art world darling or will you simply buy what you like?”


The DUMBO Arts Festival includes open studios of many great Brooklyn-based artists and designers this Saturday and Sunday. Quite frankly many of the artists involved are unfamiliar to me which I view as a great opportunity to see some new and different art! If I make it over (which I plan to) I will definitely stop by April Hannah‘s studio which I visited this past spring.

Hana to Hanna via Jollygoo

September 9th, 2010 · No Comments

I have a new favorite blog, jollygoo (written by a woman named Hiki) which captures the artful life in Tokyo and led me to this great little art show. “Making It Home” is a group show at Biotype by Hanna Konola and Hana Akiyama and the work is available online. I just discovered Hiki’s little paper goods shop, UguiSu and am totally smitten.

Hana and Hanna setting up the show.






All images from the Biotope website.

Rachel Bone @ Art Star

September 7th, 2010 · No Comments

Baltimore-based Rachel Bone‘s series ‘I Bet You’ is now showing at Art Star Gallery in Philly. Rachel’s work centers on women embarking on adventures full of symbolism. In ‘I Bet You’ Bone paints women in the throws of everyday activities that when seen from a distance spell out the alphabet. Below are her A, B, C’s.