When Nicholas Bohac left behind the Midwest to pursue his artistic career in one of the most expensive cities in the country -- San Francisco -- the decision must have been both wise, for the connections and experience, and terrifying, for the potential financial burden. But thanks to a sympathetic landlord and a supportive wife with more gainful employment, Bohac lives in the SF's Outer Richmond neighborhood, within blocks of Golden Gate Park, and has a studio space that he shares with his landlord, free of charge. The garage studio is hardly one to lounge about comfortably in, but considering the skyrocketing housing rates of the city and its general shortage of space, Bohac is one lucky man. Bohac is one of a small percentage of artists who has the rare luxury of working on art at his leisure. His leisure, however, is not one to be taken lightly; he estimates that he created 15-18 mid-sized pieces, 165 small pieces, and participating in eight shows in 2011. 2012, though, is a new year -- and with it, comes a new approach. He has taken the time thus far in 2012 to step back and reassess his work and his direction. He is learning to be more choosy and to expect more from his work, at the same time that he is reconstructing what he wants his outwards-facing image to be.
Upon first glance, Bohac's works are complex and psychedelic in nature, full of unnatural colors and shapes. But despite how obscured, manipulated and tweaked they might be, their very cores are centered around landscapes -- one interest that is deeply-rooted and enduring in Bohac's life. After all, it is landscapes which drew Bohac from the Midwest, where he had lived his entire life, to the West Coast. "I came out here to visit a friend who had moved out here... [and] I just was like, 'Whoa, there's a lot of stuff out here happening that I've never seen before,'" he recalls. "I'd seen mountains and I'd seen oceans, but I think everything just coalesced together in this area, and it makes these really interesting landscapes." To pay homage to his new surroundings, Bohac began with painstakingly rendered tempera paintings based off of photographs he had taken of the ocean. Ultimately, though, it was attending art school and taking in critiques from others that refined Bohac's style from mere imitation to reimaginings of everyday scenery.
"I think one of the best things anyone -- any instructor -- ever said of me was when I was making two or three of these collage paintings at once, and they were all at night and you could see the blue sky and the stars. He said, 'Why don't you make the sky this pink?' and that's all he had to say, and all of a sudden everything opened up a little bit more."

 

Seattle's Flatcolor Gallery is taking a hiatus for the summer! But before then, they will be moving out of their long-standing Pioneer Square location (528 1st Ave. S, Seattle), and are inviting you to join them for a folkloric show of Stacey Rozich's new works. The opening is tomorrow, April 5th, from 5:00pm to 9:00pm. Select pieces are displayed below, and more can be see here.

 

See our interview with Stacey Rozich, Patterns Of Renewal

 

Up through the end of this week at Carmichael Gallery in Culver City (5795 Washington Blvd.) is a globe-trotting exhibition with a somewhat street art lean.

Bumblebee

The appearance of materials such as stencils, spraypaint, and unconventional installation materials makes sense when one considers the curator of the show is none other than Los Angeles street artist Bumblebee -- an individual that really runs with his moniker to create miniature beehives and models that he attaches to abandoned phone booths. In this group show, he pulls his work off the street and into a gallery setting. What is perhaps most impressive about the curation of this show is that beneath its sophisticated facade, each and every artist knows how to get down to the nitty-gritty and how to take his or her works to the street. Perhaps this quote can serve as a fitting summary for this show:
"There are many artists in the urban / street art movement. For this show, each artist was selected based on his or her unique voice and ability to push the boundaries of the genre, while remaining true to its origins." - Bumblebee

Hyuro

Valencia by way of Buenos Aires artist Hyuro makes drawings which blur the lines of where individuals begin and end. A heavy aspect of this all-in-oneness lays focus on hair, which she textures delicately and with great dimensional purpose. Expect a post soon about her street art brilliance.
Our Hands Will Eventually Destroy Everything Beautiful, a new body of work by Japanese illustrator Fumi Nakamura, is the result of a personal period of growth. After a mental breakdown and a year of hiatus from art, Nakamura realized that she needed to leave behind a past of pain and suffering to grow into the person she is now becoming. "I was chasing after unrealistic thoughts and hopes during that year... Then one day, something inside of me snapped and I came to the realization that I need to move on and get rid of my 'problems' -- beautiful memories with someone I loved, childhood trauma, pains of growing up and literally everything since they were the core source of my regrets and grudges..." Nakamura says in an interview with Thinkspace Gallery. "... I had (and still do have) a problem with holding onto the past heavily to the point where it was making me so miserable. I wanted to change and stop running away from reality -- in order to do that, I decided to "destroy." So I can maintain pieces of life together, survive in a place called "life." I became honest, out-spoken and decided to cut all the things out that are affecting me and my life negatively." These new pieces by Nakamura use negative space and delicate graphite and colored pencil drawings to accentuate the"intense but fragile," and ultimately, serve as captive reminders of human fragility. Though these images are beautiful, there is a darkness to them; animals are shot straight through by arrows, eyeballs are held in hands, and symbols of death are given significant attention.
Gary Hill. The Psychedelic Gedankenexperiment. 2011. Two projection screens, two HD video projectors, eight specially fabricated foam chairs, four text panels (each 40 x 71 inches), four amplified speakers on tripods, 3D glasses, acoustic foam/plywood divider, one computer with two channels of Quicktime pla Courtesy the artist and Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels. Saturday, March 31st, 2012 from 2:00pm to 3:30pm at Henry Auditorium. $5 for Henry members and UW students; $10 General Admission.
Tomorrow, at Henry Art Museum in Seattle, Gary Hill and George Quasha get scientifically psychedelic with performance art involving digital media and live video manipulations, human bodies, languages and rhythms, and everyday materials. In their collaboration, the two use what is probably overly wordy terminology ('electronic linguistics", "psychotropic languages vehicles", "dynamical lingualia", and "lingualities") to achieve the final goal: "a pulsational conversation with stepped-up intensity in which Real Time is invited to show its other side." Indeed, Real Time is purposely capitalized with an R and a T, and if Hill and Quasha are as brainy and far-out as their lexicon would lead one to believe, glossodelia will be a brainy mindfuck of a performance.
glossodelic attractors suggests a range of meanings from the etymologies "glosso-" (fr. Greek "language, tongue") and "-delic" (fr. Greek "make manifest, visible") and resonates with "glossolalia" and "psychedelic." "Attractors," in addition to the mathematical meaning of "a set towards which a dynamical system evolves over time (e.g., strange attractor)," connects with the "-tropic" part of 'psychotropic'—attractors that orient the mind, turn the mind in a new direction. The title indicates that the selected works perform singular initiations into dynamical/lingual events. As psychotropic languaging vehicles these works reorient the mind by altering our conception of what language is. They attract possible language realities—or, rather, lingualities." - George Quasha, in dialogue with Gary Hill and Charles Stein
This week, visual artist Margot Bird and Nils Petersen of Seattle's psychedelic rock band Rose Windows are working together to co-curate NOISE: The State Of Being Combined Into One Body, an interdisciplinary show featuring fourteen artists and five bands. The two-day experience will include visuals, sound installations, and performances, with two sessions each day at 5:00pm and 9:00pm. Included among the artists and performers are REDEFINE favorites like Midday Veil (interview + exclusive MP3 download) and creator of Le Petit Prince Troy Gua (interview). In the spirit of NOISE, this post, too, will combine music and visual art in the same space, with a focus on artists who are creating site-specific experiences. Listen to samples from participating musicians or see previous works from visual artists to get an idea of what you're in store for. Keep in mind, though, that there are some custom pieces being crafted exclusively for this event; visiting the space will provide an immersive experience that we can't even begin to captured in still photography. How all this will fit into Black Lodge will also be a sight to see! Full list of participants and schedule of events are listed at the very bottom of this post.

By way of Seattle and San Diego, artist Ian Ferguson seems to finally have hit his artistic stride amidst the urban rawness of Chicago. This documentary takes a quick glance at the new direction of his works -- with a special focus on large-scale works, paper cuts, and mixed media...

After a brief run obsessing over the miniature puppets from Trey Parker and Matt Stone's stop-motion animation, Team America: World Police, Seattle's Troy Gua took it upon himself to begin building miniature models of things and people that he loved, from his wife to Michael Jackson and Salvador Dali. His biggest accomplishment with these miniature buddies, though, has come with Le Petit Prince -- his polymer clay rendering of the man, the artist: Prince. What began as a playful nod to a man that has inspired Gua since his youth has since turned into a joyous and involved production, thanks to momentum generated by word of mouth and Prince fan sites and blogs around the world. In this interview with Gua, we discuss techniques, memories, and inspirations, and tie it all together with an eleven-track mixtape full of Gua's most loved Prince songs. Put yourself in Gua's universe for just a minute, and envelop yourself with all things bizarre, all things decadent, all things foxy, and all things Prince.

 

Los Angeles' Congregation Gallery has coordinated a host of artists to create works around the topic of dark religion. Many Seattle artists showed their works, including Don Farrell, Jethaniel Peterka, and Yvette Endrijautski. You can see some of the pieces, along with notes on why they were created, below. Don Farrell In...