Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Pat Andrea

Pat Andrea is one of my favorite kunstenaars from way back.

Krampus is Coming! oh, and so is Santa...

Santa is the carrot, Krampus is the stick.
Hope you haven't been naughty this year.

much more krampus from monster brains here

Jim Dine at Pace Wildenstein from James Kalm Report

Jim Dine is busy - you should be too. Now get to work son!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Rem Koolhaas on Charlie Rose

2002 interview - work through the Bush foreign policy segment in the beginning - Rem Koolhaas is well worth the wait - Charlie Rose is always great.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Hilary Harkness

Mother Lode, 30x30, oil/linen panel, 2005-2006

Jam packed full of tiny goodness.

link to more Hilary Harkness here

James Kalm visits Harkness show at Mary Boone

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Keith Coventry at Haunch of Venison

Minerva Estate, 1999

link to exhibition here

Marc Bell

Complaint Dept.
2006, mixed media on board, 20x15

link to more Marc Bell at Adam Baumgold Gallery here

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Loretta Lux


Loretta Lux is a master of subtlety. She proves that a light touch is much more compelling and powerful than the strong-arm tactics of those that force feed strangeness. Only the most delicate of alterations give these photographs a quality that is timeless and haunting. It all feels like some bad dream that I don't want to wake up from.

Loretta Lux link here

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Dana Schutz

Historical Reenactment with Plants(I'm into Conceptual Gardening)
2008, oil on canvas, 96 x 120

The heavy duty stylings of Dana Schutz are at once playful and rigorous - always a winning combination.

Dana Schutz at CFA here

link to Loren Munk aka James Kalm videos here
out here on the edge I experience the art world vicariously thru James Kalm

Dana Schutz opening at Zach Feuer - courtesy James Kalm - the Guy on the Bike

Friday, December 05, 2008

My Statement for the Homegrown Show

I first used this statement for a Tema Celeste article a few years back. This photo appears with it in the catalog - apparently I'm not making my mother proud with this one.

Painting: Now this is a messy business. All these concepts, metaphors, symbols - they just don’t seem to stick. Oily annoyances, they always end up contaminating an otherwise clean surface before sliding off and befouling the studio floor. They form doubts, disregard rules they insisted on moments on before, and then they’re gone. Busy little bees buzzing from flower to flower, cross-pollinating and hybridizing, they’re never satisfied. The dead end becomes all too apparent and attractive. Anyway, it’s out of my hands, so hey - if you cant beat ‘em, join ‘em.

Pardon me sir, may I interest you in a scenic landscape?

So here I am with a smile on my face and a tear in my eye. All I ever really wanted was a style, just one, that’s all... I’ve already told you that if you were a good boy you could have dessert. But you haven’t been good at all. You don’t know how to pay attention or focus. Now stop playing with your food or you’ll eat it for breakfast tomorrow! Can’t you finish anything? Must be attention deficit disorder... When you fail to recognize your own limitations failure becomes a method and dissonance your spirit guide. Maybe the dead end isn’t what it seemed. It’s the point where the road ends and ubiquity begins. Recall the ambassadors! Forward in all directions! Now take this down: I’ve confused desire with attraction - I want more. I demand more. I’m coming to take what’s mine! In a constant state of arousal a sense of accomplishment is elusive, but at least now you can admit one thing - a parochial attitude is no longer possible. Ah yes, the non-hierarchical aesthetic has become paradigm.

Don’t provoke me, I’ll paint your portrait!

Or maybe I won’t. And that’s the ironic ending. Now the childhood fantasy has come true. Bombardment with gamma rays or the experiment gone terribly awry has forced you to assume multiple identities. Armed with ambiguity, disparity, and a hint of resolve, the assimilation of diverse pictorial modes begins.

Look how this still life adds to any arrangement!

The challenge to painting’s flexibility is deliberate and deadly serious. Strict informality meets ornament toe to toe on the uneven playground of gothic hyperspace. An intentional mistake whispers noncompliance but can stop indecision dead in its tracks from becoming paralysis. So what’s the big idea with this anything goes anti-strategy? The fact that there is no big idea is the big idea.

It’s all just a means to an end. The surface describes only that which is superficial and immaterial - merely camouflage given shape by a totally different underlying structure. What does the text mean? Not what it says. You’ve taken me too literally. I’m not in the business of making pictures. It is possible that painting can symbolize itself and simultaneously reveal some mythic truth, but who knows for sure? The mistake is in thinking there’s a code to break in the first place. That pitiless formalism and singularity are ancient history - a heavy-handed attempt to categorize.

Painting is understood when it is unlocked from rules and language that reinforce the walls of its Euclidean prison. It speaks for itself on its own terms and just is. And you are just you. So shut up and look at me when I’m talking to you!

Excerpt from a conversation with Painting

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Trenton Doyle Hancock - 'Fear' at James Cohan

The Bad Promise, 2008, mixed media on canvas, 84x108"

The show at Cohan is up until January 10

check it out here

Trenton Doyle Hancock is nothing short of a force of nature. While poking around the James Cohan site be sure to look at Trenton's past shows as well - it's some of the most exciting and original stuff out there - the guy has a sense of freedom that you only see in children or Tal R or Jonathan Meese.

Me A Mound
- is a book by Trenton Doyle Hancock that you must have

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Stuart Pearson Wright - Woman Surprised by a Werewolf

2008,oil on linen, 2x1.35 meters

Stuart Pearson Wright has been one of my favorites for years. A past winner of the prestigious BP portrait prize, he has remained an uncompromising standard bearer for figurative painting in Britain and beyond. Stuart sets the bar high and keeps us honest.

The above painting was shortlisted for John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize - a huge honor.

visit his site - The Saveloy Factory -

MUTO by Blu

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Ron van der Ende - basreliefs in reclaimed timber

Ron van der Ende's work will blow your mind. The fact that these things are only inches thick is enough to make the trompe l'oeil masters over at the Waichulis Studio look twice.

check his work here

and his incredible blogs

the stray voltage

or the deceased but archived


Joel Stoehr - Tower of Babel

This beauty is available for your viewing pleasure at Pierogi in Brooklyn until December 21. WOW!

link to pierogi

while you are there you can see some of my drawings in the flatfile under my alias John LaBarre-Borowicz

Monday, December 01, 2008

Ana Serrano - Cartonlandia

acrylic,collage, and mixed media on cardboard - 62x48x54 inches

This is just incredible on so many levels(ha ha). I love stacked cities and they've been showing up a bit lately - I think this one is extraordinary though. I'm working on a large landscape painting loosely based on my Stumplopolis drawing (below). I measure the worth of my art by how my 3.5 year old son reacts to it. He's always loved Stumpolpolis and was sad to see it go to it's new home - I recently borrowed it back for a show so I had it in the studio for a few days - he couldn't take his eyes off it. He loves Ana Serrano's piece even more and that's worth more than a good review in Art Forum.

link to ana serrano

Stumpopolis, Walled City, Rocinha, and Brueghel

Brueghel - Tower of Babel

Rocinha - Brazil

The Walled City of Kowloon

Stumpopolis,graphite on illustration board, 16x20, 2005

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Richard Winther at University Art gallery - University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

A great show of paintings by this Danish artist curated by the always brilliant Lasse Antonsen. Theatrum Rdo: The Late Work of Richard Winther
click here for link

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Don't You Look at Me

I once saw my evil twin on a train in Italy - or someone else saw HIS evil twin on a train in Italy - it was a freaky experience. If it was a movie we would have fought each other - instead we just stared ... but anyway - here's David Boyce having a good look.

oil on linen, 9"x12" with artist made (ham-fisted) frame.

David Boyce - Museum Curator and Man of Many Scarves

Head Scratching

I'm showing work from as far back as 1999 as well as 2 pieces that are brand spanking new.

Opening Night

The opening at NBAM was last night. We has a great turn out despite the weather. This is a portrait I did of the museum's curator David Boyce - I finished it the day before with the aid of Gamblin's modern chemistry

All Mouth And No Trousers

I had a good time making this one but it took long enough - the painting measures 72" x 72" - oil,acrylic, and india ink on canvas. I'll get a better photo of it posted later

Younger Apprentice

Maks says he's ready for stretcher building if I would just give him a chance.

What's on the Easel Anyway?

A Strong Reaction

Not all my decisions go over well.

The Director's Chair

Kaz has really enjoyed watching the progress of a large painting I've been working on. I'm part of a group show at the New Bedford Art Museum opening on the 27th and this will be one of the few new pieces I'll be showing.