New American Paintings is thrilled to be included in the Magazines section of Art Basel Miami Beach for the eighth consecutive year. Come find us at Booth M15, and say hey to Dana, our designer and production manager! Also: receive special rates on the magazine available only at the booth. Come say hey!
Filed under: Competitions, Q&A | Tags: competitions, Dan Cameron, Evan J. Garza, Jim Gaylord, Prospect New Orleans, Southern Competition
Dan Cameron is single handedly changing the landscape of contemporary art in the Southern United States. So it’s no surprise that we sought him out to be the juror of the current Southern Competition of New American Paintings. (Apply online!)
A curator for more than 30 years and the founder and director of Prospect New Orleans, the largest biennial of international contemporary art in the country, Cameron has introduced audiences in the South to exceptional work from artists across the globe. More importantly, however, Cameron and Prospect have contributed significantly to a new growing contemporary scene in New Orleans and a further revitalization of the Big Easy.
I caught up with Cameron while at his New York office last week to talk Louisiana and emerging work.
The deadline for the Southern Competition is December 31 (open to artists living in AL, AR, DC, FL, GA, KY, LA, MD, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA, & WV), so keep the submissions coming! –Evan J. Garza
EJG: You started Prospect New Orleans after Katrina. How long have you been working in New Orleans?
I’d been a visitor and have worked in New Orleans, on and off, for more than 20 years. I started Prospect as a post-Katrina effort to engage the city. It was really something that the artists and the community called on me to do because they knew that I was very close to the city and they knew that I could get a lot of attention for New Orleans, and that’s how the whole process started.
I was working in New Orleans as early as January 2006 on Prospect, but I didn’t form the company until 2007. But because of raising money outside of a museum, and because of the needs of the community, it was not appropriate at all for an outsider like me to start to open up a new charity in New Orleans less than a year after the storm. So I had to be very careful not to compete with other nonprofits in New Orleans, and bring money from outside of Louisiana, so to do that you have to be in a place where there’s a lot of media, and there’s a lot of art, and that happened to be in New York. So I have two homes: an office in New Orleans and an office in New York.
EJG: Have you seen a direct effect that Prospect has had on New Orleans?
Very dramatic. New galleries have opened up, there’s more attention for museums and galleries. Before, you could barely see any mention of [the city] in The New York Times or Art Forum. Nothing had ever happened to New Orleans which was considered newsworthy on a national level, and that’s totally changed.
Now the Whitney has recently bought the work of younger New Orleans artists—that’s totally unheard of. And I think that’s only going to improve over time. More and more New Orleans artists have national and international exposure and New Orleans galleries are able to start showing their work in other parts of the country and also internationally. I would say that the number of co-op galleries in New Orleans has gone from zero in 2007 to something like ten right now. The whole St. Claude arts district, where the co-op galleries are located, has absolutely exploded. It’s far and away the most exciting new addition to the New Orleans art scene that anyone can remember and that’s all really a direct result of Prospect.
Filed under: Video | Tags: 91, Conrad Ruiz, Future Shipwreck, Graham Kolbeins, Pacific Coast
Featured in #91, the forthcoming Pacific Coast edition of New American Paintings, available on newsstands next month, the work of Conrad Ruiz doesn’t take itself too seriously, and neither does he. Featuring a host of characters in mild to wild circumstances, Ruiz’s exciting work is one colorful and exuberant playground. Humor is as inherent to the work as the paint used to create it, and his compositions are often filled with subjects in oddly fantastic circumstances, like Obama riding a giant Corgy or smiling characters on the back of a great white shark.
Graham Kolbeins of Future Shipwreck recently caught up with the California artist while he was working on a mammothly scaled painting which he claims is the largest watercolor on Earth. Be sure to pick up #91 on newsstands in December!
Check out some of the latest entries to the Southern Competition. The deadline is December 31, so keep them coming! We’ll be updating the blog with highlights throughout the competition. Apply online! For more information about this and other competitions, visit the competitions page on our website.
NOTE: The following are random selections, and in no way reflect, or influence, final selections made by the juror.
Greg Minah, Almost Axiomatic | Acrylic on Canvas, 42 x 42 inches
Kim Manfredi, Super Nova | Oil on Canvas, 72 x 48 inches
Christopher Hauck, Caffeinated Caretaker | Mixed Media On Panel, 36 x 24 inches
Marcus Jansen, Dog House | Oil on Canvas, 72 x 108 inches
Filed under: Q&A | Tags: 74, Evan J. Garza, nudes, Playboy, samsøn, Suzannah Sinclair
Installation view, Susannah Sinclair: Tomorrow is Here, samsøn, Boston
Suzannah Sinclair probably has more copies of Playboy than your dad. (And there’s a pretty good chance she’s putting them to better use.) Featured in edition #74 of New American Paintings, Sinclair has a thing for vintage nudes, and her ability to render them so subtly is matched only by her insistence on throwing the viewer into the interiors she reproduces. Her recent exhibitions have included objects from the spaces she paints, a practice she began with a solo show in Sweden and one that seeks to place the viewer within a furnished environment not unlike that of her subjects. I caught up this week with the Brooklyn-based artist to talk nudie magazines. —Evan J. Garza
EJG: Do you work from photographs? It seems as if many of these girls might be from decades ago. There’s a vintage quality to them. How do you procure your images and how do you work with them?
Yes I do, I paint from old men’s magazines from the ’60s and ’70s, mostly American but I am always on the lookout when I travel and have some great ones from Sweden. I’ve lost count of how many I have. A while a go my friend was cleaning out the house she grew up in and, between her father and her older brothers, there were a lot of Playboys. She gave them to me and it just kept going from there. During that era the bodies were real, pre airbrushing. I love the furniture and the textiles and even the print process that gives the photos an otherworldly saturation and hue.
Still Crazy, 2009 | Watercolor and pencil on birch panel, 16 x 22 inches. Courtesy samsøn, Boston.
Filed under: Q&A | Tags: 73, Albers, CTRL Gallery, Evan J. Garza, George Herms, LAND, Los Angeles, Orange County Museum of Art, Pacific Coast, Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, Sara Meltzer Gallery/Projects, Sarah Cain, Seiler + Mosseri-Marlio Galerie
Triangle for R.J.M., 2009 | Feathers, acrylic, gold, silver, and bronze leaf, ribbon, gouache, string, gel medium and watercolor on paper, 66 3/8 x 45 1/8 x 1/2 inches
The work of Sarah Cain has as much to do with her surroundings as it does with the materials she uses to create it. As the contemporary practice of painting continues to expand exponentially, with many artists becoming less concerned with the physical medium of paint itself, Cain’s practice—a combination of control, happenstance, and environmental information—is made unique through its reliance on space and the structural conditions of the locations in which her work is exhibited.
Featured in edition #73 of New American Paintings and based in Los Angeles, Cain produces chromatically explosive works on paper and highly dimensional site-specific installations of painted objects, each featuring colorful geometric abstractions. I caught up last week with the New York native and L.A.-based artist to discuss her smart, sculptural work and talk Albers. —Evan J. Garza
EJG: It’s no stretch to say that your work is quite sculptural, not only in the three-dimensional sense of some of your larger pieces, or even in installations, but also in the way your compositions are constructed in works on paper. Tell me about the sculptural quality of your work.
The work is painting via sculptural ideas. It is all about the multiple forms of space: physical, psychic and emotional. I’m interested in challenging the comfort zones within what painting can be.
Installation view, California Does Psychic at Sara Meltzer Gallery/Projects, New York
Filed under: In the Studio, Q&A | Tags: 56, 74, astronaut, Evan J. Garza, Northeast, Scott Listfield, Stanley Kubrick, Star Wars
BOOM, 2010 | Oil on canvas, 12 x 9 inches
Scott Listfield wants to know where the people on the Death Star buy their groceries. The Boston-based artist had some pretty high expectations for the future when he was younger, not unlike Stanley Kubrick’s imagined explorers of deep space and their all-knowing computers. But unfortunately, as we’ve come to discover, Kubrick’s 2001 was not the 2001 we came to understand.
Featured in editions #56 and #74 of New American Paintings, Listfield creates paintings that place the sci-fi protagonist within the mundane existence of day-to-day life in the real 21st-century (with Dunkin Donuts and Burger King in tow). I visited the artist at his Porter Square studio this week to talk Kubrick and Star Wars. —Evan J. Garza
Filed under: Noteworthy | Tags: Disney, Duccio, Giotto, Jason Dunda, Josef Albers, Noteworthy
The Most Beautiful Electric Chair in the World (Comfy Chair Proposal), 2010 | Gouache on paper, 8 x 9 inches. Courtesy the artist.
Chicago artist Jason Dunda might work with gouache on paper, but his real love is wood. Featured as a Noteworthy artist in edition #83 of New American Paintings, Dunda’s work is as humorous as it is highly reductive. His love of wooden forms in his work led him to build his own object out of the material, and his attention to the hard-formed lines in his work is offset by subtle applications of paint and giant fields of negative space. I caught up Dunda this week to talk wood, his recent work, and what he considers painterly. —Evan J. Garza
EJG: You were featured as a Noteworthy artist in edition #83 of New American Paintings in 2009. Tell me about the work you were making then, and what you’re working on now.
It was such a great surprise to see that I’d been featured [as a Noteworthy artist] in the front of the magazine. At the time I was making this work, I was thinking a lot about the end of the world… but in a kind of stupid way. I had just read Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Wall-E had just come out, and there was this show on cable called “Life After People” that digitally produced—pretty badly, mind you—what might happen if every human being on earth suddenly disappeared. I started thinking a lot about how futile it is to control our surroundings when the natural world is so powerful and chaotic. I can’t make make art without it being at least a little funny, so I responded to these thoughts by making these beautiful semi-abstractions of landscapes with pathetic man-made alterations. These led to the paintings of the useless ramshackle towers and trees made out of cut logs also published in the magazine.
Filed under: Art World | Tags: Angelina Gualdoni, Astrid Bowlby, Charles Burwell, Craig Drennen, Cynthia Ona Innis, Erik Parker, James Cook, Keith Mayerson, Kyle Field, Linda Geary, Liz Markus, Louise LeBourgeois, Marcus Kenney, Patte Loper, Stephen Dinsmore
Kyle Field, from the exhibition KYLE FIELD: Waxing Marks, Courtesy Taylor De Cordoba, Los Angeles.
This fall there are some really exciting shows at commercial galleries all across the country, especially in the case of artists previously featured in New American Paintings, and we’re pleased to share with our readers the must-see gallery shows of the season. Our staff has put together a list of 40 of the top painting exhibitions at private galleries across the country—from New York to San Francisco to Houston, Chicago, L.A. and more—featuring more than 25 notable and not-to-be-missed shows of contemporary painting from major painting players like Brice Marden, Luc Tuymans, and Danny Rolph. Let the gallery hopping begin! —Evan J. Garza
Filed under: Behind the Scenes, Q&A | Tags: Boston, Boston Red Sox, Cabinet, Dave Cole, DODGEgallery, Ellen Harvey, Evan J. Garza, Jason Middlebrook, Kristen Dodge, Lower East Side
Kristen Dodge is from Boston (don’t get it twisted), and she’s representing Red Sox fans in a city full of Yankees. After several years in Boston where she served as director of judi rotenberg gallery, which shuttered this summer after 40 years of programming, Dodge has taken her new gallerist reigns to the Lower East Side of New York and is running full gallop in her new space, DODGEgallery.
While in Boston, Dodge created a dynamic program of contemporary artists with rotenberg co-director Abigail Ross, which Nick Capasso, senior curator at the DeCordova, said, “became one of the most important places to see advanced work in Boston”—a goal that she is already hard at work executing in her new home in New York at 15 Rivington Street, just around the corner from the New Museum.
Dodge works hard, she expects artists to be hard-working as well, and—to no surprise—she admits that the work she’s drawn to is rigorous. I spoke with the young New York dealer this week to talk about leaving Boston, why she decided on the Lower East Side, and her plans for her new space. —Evan J. Garza
EJG: You were director at judi rotenberg for a number of years before recently moving to New York and starting your own space, DODGEgallery. How did you end up in New York? And why the Lower East Side?
I worked at the rotenberg gallery with Abigail Ross for 6 years. My first day on the job was one of those moments in life when everything falls into place and you find yourself exactly where you need to be. It was an incredible run, and very hard to sever myself from both the gallery and Abi. When I first told her that I needed to follow my own dream, take the leap, grab life by the balls—however you want to say it—she was immediately supportive and excited for me, or relieved to have me off her tail!
I spent a few months weighing the pros and cons of Boston versus New York, and it became very obvious to me that I would have a more balanced lifestyle in Boston, my home, but that I would find greater opportunity in New York. I decided that if I was going to make this commitment and the number of sacrifices that it entails, and ask our artists to do the same, I needed to position the gallery in New York where there is endless and unparalleled opportunity. So I spent about five months traveling back and forth to New York to set up the business. I had some incredible friends who let me sleep on their couch, and so many friends and family who offered their unwavering support. I’m also incredibly lucky that Patton Hindle was willing to pick up her life in Boston and move to New York to join the gallery.
So why the Lower East Side? This is one of the most exciting gallery hubs in the city—it’s the newest generation of spaces, and continues to grow steadily. I’ve heard that nine new galleries opened in L.E.S. this fall. It’s more renegade than Chelsea is now, there’s a greater opportunity to stand out, and find memorable, unlikely spaces [in which] to open a gallery. Visitors like the sense of discovery that the neighborhood offers too. How fantastic is it to walk past a kitchen supply store and stumble into a contemporary art gallery?