Saturday, December 19
Wednesday, November 11
I didn’t know quite what to expect. I only saw one piece in person prior to the show, but what I knew from that one piece was that he had a great grasp on his medium. I checked out whatever I was able to find a week leading up to the opening. His multimedia work has a lot going on to say the least. The postcard for the show alone lured me in: Deer facing off in an end-of-the-world mess full of power lines, garbage, broken down structures, a McDonald’s and a bowling alley.
Lana and I picked up Nick Pedersen and his friend Dan from 30th St. Station an hour before the opening. They hung the show earlier in the day after a two-plus hour ride in from Brooklyn. Nick seemed as anxious for the show as he did just to know about the city and what was around him, as well as who we were and what we did. (We had all met briefly during the summer at the official opening of the Slingluff Gallery where we were part of the Group Birdhouse Show.)
Pulling up to the show, I was pretty struck by the layout. The walls were filled with a nice mix of large-scale work on thick wooden box frames, as well as a huge collage of black framed prints. Titled “The Reclamation,” the show is a scathing commentary largely focused on humans’ impact on nature and vice versa, where images are manipulated into a digital collage of improbable landscapes. Pedersen creates a hopeless habitat for wildlife where any inkling of home can not be found. The show’s title piece, an expansive 30” x 75” five panel creation, is where Pedersen’s theme comes full circle: Cityscape structures begin to be overrun with greenery and wildlife and pre-industrial man relearns survival.
This show will be up through November at The Slingluff Gallery in Fishtown, Philadelphia. You can view the show at slingluffgallery.com.
Cheers for now.
Thursday, October 1
Shadow Boxers: Sweat, Sacrifice & The Will To Survive In American Boxing Gyms
Boxing gyms are uncovered in all of their glorious grunge in these photographs and essays that reveal both the stark reality of success and the possibility of promise in the sport of boxing. This intimate look at the fighters, trainers, and hangers-on who inhabit these gyms brings to life the tough--and surprisingly tender--world of American boxing. With the forward written by Joe Frazier, this book shows evocative images reveal the pain, sacrifice, and discipline of the "sweet science" as well as the triumphs, tragedies, and big dreams of the men and women who practice it. A dozen essays by veteran boxing writers such as Katherine Dunn, Carlo Rotella, Kate Sekules, F. X. Toole, Lucius Shepard, Robert Anasi, Loic Wacquant, Joe Rein, and Ralph Wiley explore the community and culture of boxing gyms, an endangered American institution that serves not only as the training ground for the next generation of great fighters, but as a sanctuary in tough neighborhoods, a lifeline for troubled kids, and a repository of a centuries-old tradition of pugilistic knowledge.
Sunday, September 27
So Jonathan Slingluff is more than happy to host the exhibit in his beautiful space so I'll be taking a trip out to Philly next month to make it happen. A few artists involved in the show:
Leo Espinosa / Mike Burdick / Don Kilpatrick / Mike Perry / Plastic Kid / Mike Daines / Justin Ward / Himanshu Sharma / Matt Gordon / Laura Borchert / Chris Reno / Colleen McGinn / Aubrey Stalnaker / Joe Schlaud / Nate Marcy / Jeff Mullin / Vince Troia / and more...
+ an Installation by AJ Fosik. Amazing artist originally from Southeast Michigan, who currently works and resides in Philly. Check him out! Such cool work!
View images of Slingluff Gallery here.
Sunday, September 13
It's ok to be pale. It's actually more accepted...
200 naked people on bikes might ride by...
There aren't many chain restaurants here...
Public transportation actually makes sense after the 2nd time riding it...
As long as you know the number streets you can figure out where you are...
You need to wear coats more...
You don't wonder why someone is walking instead of driving...
Always look for bicyclists when you're making a right turn, even if you know you haven't seen one in a while...
There's a lot of artists...
Expect there to be a stop sign at every intersection...
Even in the summer people wear pants and jeans...
The PPA doesn't regulate South Philly parking, but every where else they do...
There's some shady places under the "El"...
Friday, August 28
The Slingluff Gallery presents Jason Adams and Vanna Weaver. First Saturday, September 5th from 6-9pm.
Raised in the sprawl of San Jose, CA, Jason came of age during a time when the holy trinity of skateboarding, punk rock and DIY art was still a dangerous combination, long before the slow air-conditioned death that is mall culture sank its fangs in. Becoming a professional skateboarder at the age of 17, Jason was given more platforms on which to stand/skate and be noticed, and he took the opportunity to begin unleashing his growing interest and talent in art. The hand-made aesthetic comprised of spray cans, stencils and bold lines that embodied his childhood days of skateboarding and punk. Jason began creating that were both intricately layered and immediately impactful; portraits of anti-heros and scenes of beautiful decay abounded, focusing on by-gone eras and rusting ethics still in place.
In just a few short years, Jason’s exposure as an artist grew- from logos on skate brand decks and t-shirts to international gallery shows. His work transitioned from hobby to craft to fine art, and these days find Jason Adams' artistic development in full swing. He's found his groove, and watch as he sprays the lines of his future all over the walls of the world.
Vanna Weaver from Pittsburg, PA specializes in documentary photography, attained her Bachelor's Degree in Photography as a Fine Art from Point Park University in conjunction with Pittsburgh Filmmakers.
"Meant for Each Other" is a romantic photo narrative comprised of lonely but alike antique objects. By applying the expression better off together, she combined ordinary, old fashioned subject matters; to form animated multiple exposure photographs. Each image pair works together and creates a more complex and overall complete photograph.
Sunday, August 23
Jonathan booked a reservation in Media, PA for Iron Hill Brewery. It's about 35 min away, which isn't bad, but then neither of us knew it was supposed to rain. Well, let me rephrase that...down pour! The entire drive was extreme rain. So it took us a little longer to get there. We were really early anyway so it didn't matter.
We get there. We end up parking across the street from the restaurant/brewery, which wasn't far at all. It seemed extremely far though considering as soon as you opened the door you were drenched. So, Jonathan got out of the passenger's side since the river of rain water in the street was pretty deep. I was waiting in the car while he had a smoke. As I was waiting, it just kept raining harder. Which was unbelievable really.
I finally get out and we discussed our plan of attack. We decided it was just as "good" to cross the street in front of us than anywhere else, since we were in the middle of the block and the intersections were probably worse. Jonathan gave me his rain coat because I couldn't find mine and he asked "Ready?" I nodded my head yes. Then he said "1, 2, 3...GO!" He jumps out before me and I saw his shoed foot sink into the rushing river of rain. I jump right in after him and BAM....I lose my sandal. The river tore off my shoe, granted it was a dressy flip flop.
Instead of stopping, I kept running towards the other side of the street. But then I turned back realizing I probably needed my shoe. I started looking for it in the pouring rain, after I screamed across the street to Jonathan. Jonathan came back over, called and canceled our reservation and we were both looking for it now. After 15-20 minute search, I was looking at tires still hoping my shoe would be there. I saw on one tire that there were weeds stuck to it, and I thought that it was weird weeds could get stuck to a tire in this gushing river and my shoe wasn't anywhere to be found. I moved to the next car, about six cars from where I lost my shoe, and looked at the tire again. It looked like the water was moving differently around the front passenger tire than any other tire. I moved in closer and pulled out my shoe! Jonathan was around the corner, I think checking for my shoe in sewer grates, I yelled down to him and he made his way back to me. He couldn't believe I found it.
We walked back to the car sopping wet, and went back home. We changed, made a reservation at The London in Philly, about 10 min from us, and had a wonderful rest of the night. Nice and dry!
Tuesday, August 4
Peter Oravetz will be at the Gallery August 8th....along with his artwork.
"Since humans aren't perfect, robots will never be perfect either. We can program them to perform tasks perfectly but once a hurdle is present, like a wall placed in their path, everything comes to a halt. I suppose that robots with AI (Artificial Intelligence) will eventually show glorious moments of humanity, especially when they make mistakes. These moments, depicted ‘Robots!’, are truly the purist display of the mimicry of humanity, revealing the curiosity, love, and humor that we as humans hold so dear. My images reflect the robots’ utter stupidity and their wonderfully endearing attributes as they attempt to become human in their own way." - Peter Oravetz
Peter Oravetz, from Pennsylvania graduate from Montserrat College of art in Beverly Massachusetts with honors and a bachelors degree in fine art. The 'Robots!' were born in 2005 and have been slowly developed ever since. He currently devotes his time to his art, family and work at a local live music venue; his aspirations include earning a graduate degree and ultimately teaching.
Sunday, June 21
You can read the entire plan as well as see a little video. They show horseback riding..and yes, I have seen that with my own eyes here on Girard. Very out of place looking. The video is pretty cool!
Tuesday, June 16
Ever since I've moved to the city, Philadelphia that is, I slowly started realizing how "uneducated" I was when it came to organic and local "good stuff". Or maybe naive is a better word. I just didn't pay attention to it before. Sure I knew organic was better but I didn't really know why....and buying local. Maybe I would.
Now, it almost seems impossible for me not to buy organic at the grocery stores. Unless I go to a chain that was in S. Jersey up here. Organic is priced so much higher in those chains or you have to go to a specialty grocery store to get anything organic. I'm really shocked at the options we have here in the city. Along with that, I believe the city has a plan to increase tree coverings and "go green". I never heard of S. Jersey doing anything like that.
There's a free mag that I picked up at Whole Foods, Grid, and just reading the editor's note is inspiring to do better things for the world. Even if it's just one thing that I do, that is passed on to someone else. (Funny Jonathan said basically the same thing a week ago that the editor says here.) "We might not bike across country, but we might bike to work. We might not start a farm, but we might do a little gardening, and buy more food from local farmers. And we might not start an education center in our neighborhood, but we might talk to our friends and family about what we're learning."
So with that said, I'm sharing what I'm learning. I try to buy at the local farm markets, or buy organic. We don't have a dishwasher, so I'm turning off the water while I'm scrubbing things. (thanks to Jonathan on that one.) And I've also started taking public transportation. More so out of necessity, but it makes more sense to do so. I'm not patting myself on the back, just telling you what I'm learning and I hope that whomever reads this might get an idea to do something different.
P.S. The gallery is moving in less than a month, and it's being gutted out. The cool thing about the company who is doing this, they reuse as much as possible from the gutting process. Refinishing old floors etc. And with our name change, we have a new website but you can still get there from the old one. www.SlingluffGallery.com
Friday, March 27
Now, I'm back painting a little more THANKFULLY, Scribbles Book is in the process of being represented by an agency, and I'm preparing to blog more. For now, I wanted to share with you about writing an artist statement.
I found this article a while ago, but it's helpful. Hopefully it will help those who need it too. Enjoy! - Leigh
By Mollie Gordon
Your artist's statement can be a moving testament to your creativity and integrity. The expression of this commitment will vary, but the effectiveness of your artist's statement stems from the authority with which you write it.
Our words "author" and "authority" come from the Latin root "augere," which means "to increase, to create, to promote." This implies that the notions of creation and promotion are compatible! The more I muse on the meaning of working from my authority, of being the author of my work and of my conduct, the more I understand that authentic communication about my work is a powerful tool for creative growth as well as for business success.
The exercises in this section will get you centered and in touch with your own authority. When I write promotional materials for artists (or any kind of business) I always have the principal people involved do these exercises first. I use the words and phrases they generate to compose compelling artist's statements on their behalf. This way their creative authority is incorporated in the finished product.
Think of your artist's statement as a nourishing stew. The rich flavors and inviting aroma will feed your spirit and summon wonderful people to your table. You'll want to make sure your stew is made from the freshest, finest ingredients and that it has been simmered and seasoned with care. Do this, and you will be proud to share your creative vision – your authority – with others.
You'll need pencil and paper, a dictionary, and a thesaurus.
STEP ONE: Assemble the Ingredients.
1. Take five minutes and think about why you do what you do. How did you get into this work? How do you feel when work is going well? What are your favorite things about your work? Jot down short phrases that capture your thoughts. Don't worry about making sense or connections. The more you stir up at this point, the richer the stew.
2. Make a list of words and phrases that communicate your feelings about your work and your values. Include words you like, words that make you feel good, words that communicate your values or fascinations. Be loose. Be happy. Be real. Think of these as potential seasonings for your stew. You don't have to choose which ones to use just yet, so get them all out of the cupboard.
3. Answer these questions as simply as you can. Your answers are the meat and potatoes of your stew. Let them be raw and uncut for now.
- What is your favorite tool? Why?
- What is your favorite material? Why?
- What do you like best about what you do?
- What do you mean when you say that a piece has turned out really well?
- What patterns emerge in your work? Is there a pattern in the way you select materials? In the way you use color, texture or light?
- What do you do differently from the way you were taught? Why?
- What is your favorite color? List three qualities of the color. Consider that these qualities apply to your work.
4. Look at your word list. Add new words suggested by your answers to the questions above.
5. Choose two key words from your word list. They can be related or entirely different. Look them up in a dictionary. Read all the definitions listed for your words. Copy the definitions, thinking about what notions they have in common. Look your words up in a Thesaurus. Read the entries related to your words. Are there any new words that should be added to your word list?
6. Write five sentences that tell the truth about your connection to your work. If you are stuck, start by filling in the blanks below.
When I work with__________ I am reminded that___________.
I begin a piece by______________.
I know a piece is done when__________________.
When my work is going well, I am filled with a sense of _____________.
When people see my work, I'd like them to ________________.
STEP TWO: Filling the Pot.
Write a three paragraph artist's statement. Keep your sentences authentic and direct. Use the present tense ("I am," not "I was," "I do," not "I did.") Be brave: say nice things about yourself. If you find that you falter, write three paragraphs about an artist whose work you admire. Then write about yourself as though you were an admiring colleague. As a rule, your artist's statement should be written in the first person. Refer to yourself with the pronouns "I, me, my." If this blocks you, write in the third person, then go back and change the pronouns as needed when you get to Step Four. Use the suggestions below to structure your statement. Write three to five sentences per paragraph.
First paragraph. Begin with a simple statement of why you do the work you do. Support that statement, telling the reader more about your goals and aspirations.
Second paragraph. Tell the reader how you make decisions in the course of your work. How and why do you select materials, techniques, themes? Keep it simple and tell the truth.
Third paragraph. Tell the reader a little more about your current work. How it grew out of prior work or life experiences. What are you exploring, attempting, challenging by doing this work.
STEP THREE: Simmering the Stew.
Your artist's statement is a piece of very personal writing. Let it simmer overnight before your reread it. This incubation period will help give you the detachment necessary to polish the writing without violating your sense of integrity and safety. While your statement simmers, let your mind wander over the ingredients you assembled in Step One. Allow yourself to experience the truth of your creative experience. Marvel at the wealth of seasonings and abundance of vegetables you have at your disposal. Enjoy the realization that your work is grounded in real values and experience. If you think of things you might have left out of your statement, jot them down, but leave the statement alone.
STEP FOUR: Taste and Correct the Seasonings.
Read your statement out loud. Listen to the way the sounds and rhythms seem to invite pauses. Notice places where you'd like the sound or rhythm to be different. Experiment with sounding out the beats of words that seem to be missing until they come to mind. Do this several times until you have a sense of the musical potential of your statement. As you read your statement, some phrases will ring true and others false. Think about the ones that aren't on the mark and find the true statement lurking behind the false one. You may find that the truth is a simpler statement than the one you made. Or your internal censors may have kept you from making a wholehearted statement of your truth lest it sound self-important. Risk puffing yourself up as long as your claims are in line with your goals and values.
Keep reading and revising your statement until you hear a musical, simple, authentic voice that is making clear and honest statements about your work. Refer to your word list and other Step One exercises as needed. By now your taste buds are saturated. You need a second opinion. Choose a trusted friend or professional to read your statement. Make it clear that you are satisfied with the ingredients on the whole, but you'd like an opinion as to seasoning. In other words, you alone are the authority for what is true about your work, but you'd like feedback on clarity, tone, and such technical matters as spelling and punctuation. Once you've incorporated such suggestions as make sense to you, make a crisp, clear original of your artist's statement. Sign and date it. Make lots of copies, you will have lots of people to serve it to!
STEP FIVE: Summon the Guests.
There's little point in concocting a fabulous stew if you don't invite anyone to dinner. Every time you use your artist's statement you extend your circle of influence and build new branches of the support network for making, showing and selling your work. Enclose a copy of your artist's statement whenever you send a press release, letter of interest to a gallery or store, or contact a collector. Send it to show promoters and curators. Enclose a copy with shipments of your work so it can be displayed wherever your work is exhibited. The rest of this manual will suggest many opportunities for using your artist's statement to express your truth and support your presentations.
STEP SIX: File Your Recipe!
Save all the notes and drafts that you've made. You'll want to revise and update your artist's statement from time to time to reflect changes in your work.
Still, it is likely that many of the underlying expressions of your authority will remain the same. Having access to the "recipe" for your original statement will help you generate better revisions and will give you a sense of creative continuity. Whenever you need copy (for announcements, packaging, exhibit catalogues, etc.) return to your warm-up exercises. The words and phrases there will help you write openly and honestly about your work. And repeating the exercises will help you chart new creative territory.
Friday, January 9
1) I'm in the process of doing the final move of my objects from Ocean City to Philadelphia.
2) I disassembled my coffee table a while back whem my roommate moved in to make room for hers.
3) I finally threw out my coffee table.
4) Yesterday I was in my Ocean City house grabbing a few boxes after work.
5) There was mail on the coffee table...and that's when I realized, the coffee table I disassembled and threw out is now assembled in my living room
How you would interpret this one? P.S. My roommate has already moved out and has been back once...AFTER the coffee table was gone.
Monday, January 5
Here's the press release from Postcardmania about the calendar. My image is sideways on the press release, but it isn't in the calendar haha. I find that a little amusing. They said that they were going to fix it, but it's not a big deal. As long as the calendar is ok then we're ok!
Stay Tuned for the next giveaway....I'm not sure what it will be yet, but I just got 15 new cavases so stay tuned in my etsy store! I'm excited. Pictured in my newest listing, a seahorse. There were quite a few of you saying seahorses, so this is a good start. :)
Til Next Time! - Leigh