New American Paintings/Blog

COULDA-SHOULDA-WOULDA: Joey Veltkamp In the Studio with Whiting Tennis by openstudiospress

A mid-career artist who shows with Derek Eller and Greg Kucera, Whiting Tennis was kind enough to spare a couple of hours to show me what he’s been working on lately, and I stopped by his North Seattle home and studio last week.

As we opened a couple of tall boys, Whiting began talking about what’s on his mind, and what he’d like most right now is time and lots of it. He explained that he’s got three months to prepare for a big Fall show at the Tang Museum. Tennis has tons of great ideas but worries about having enough hours to execute each of them. Like many artists, when pushing in new directions, doubt can creep in. One might think, “Will this work? Is this any good?” I’m a bit more confident in Tennis—I predict his solo show for the Tang, Opener 22: Whiting Tennis, will be one of his best shows yet.  —Joey Veltkamp, Seattle contributor

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Hit the Pacific Northwest: Victoria Haven at Greg Kucera & PDX Contemporary by openstudiospress

ABOVE: Victoria Haven, NORTH X NORTHWEST MYSTIC (Gore-Tex® version), 2010 | Gore-Tex®, silver marking film, thread, 24 x 27.5 inches. Courtesy of Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle. BELOW: North x Northwest Sampler, 2010 | Ink and pen on paper, 14 x 14.75 inches. Courtesy PDX Contemporary Art, Portland.

Seattle-based artist Victoria Haven’s two current exhibitions, Hit the North (47° 60’N) at Greg Kucera Gallery and Hit the North (45° 52’N) at PDX Contemporary Art, dramatically defy expectations. In contrast to the grids and geometric forms characteristic of the artist’s work in recent years, the art in both Hit the North shows enters new territory by merging figures and abstracted forms with text and cultural references. Ranging widely in mediums, from sumi ink and aluminum to western red cedar and Gore-tex, the exhibitions coalesce into a single body of work through references to themes widely affiliated with the Pacific Northwest: the region’s outdoor features, weather and music scene.  —Erin Langner and Kelli Rule

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