Adventures of Hoogrrl!

A person who appears to be ambling aimlessly, but is secretly in search of adventure.

Browsing Posts published in June, 2007

Nifty show at Project 4 right now called Building. It’s a nice collaboration between five artists from Brooklyn and Ireland as they explore an abandoned electrical switch room and the effect it had on Belfast.

For almost 40 years, a small brick building in Belfast, Northern Ireland was home to a vital electrical switch room. The building, which once powered the city, had lay dormant for nearly 25 years and was scheduled for renovation in 2005. Before this process began, the development firm collaborated with a group of artists from Belfast, NI and Brooklyn, NY (OAR) to document and salvage much of the original equipment. Using these remnants, OAR created an exhibition entitled BUILDING that tells the story of this space that powered Belfast. Christopher Heaney, Oliver Jeffers, Rory Jeffers, Mac Premo and Duke Riley explored the building’s story through different avenues and media: its function behind closed doors, its effect on the city it was built in, and how the city and citizens of Belfast were affected by but unaware of its existence.

DCist did a nice review of the show today.

Irvine Contemporary is opening a great show this Saturday at 6 PM to exhibit two talented, young photographers- Kerry Skarbakka and Marla Rutherford, both of whom were featured last year in Aperture magazine in an article entitled reGeneration: 50 Photographers of Tomorrow.

In the series The Struggle to Right Oneself, Kerry Skarbakka stages himself in scenes of losing balance and control. His arresting photographs appear at the intersection of performance and artist’s portraits, and each composition dramatizes one of the deepest themes of our moment–the sense losing balance and control both personally and socially. The photographs are actual shots of the artist in the scene with only the minimal rigging and wires used for the shot removed from the final print. The photographs also record a deep sense of risk-taking and often physical danger for the artist, who has taken falls and created physically demanding sets in the search of the right arresting image. Skarbakka extended this theme further in the performances commissioned by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in 2005, Life Goes On.

For this image, Rutherford wanted to achieve “the look of a plastic mannequin . . . a Stepford housewife, but wearing see-through latex instead of a cooking apron and ’50s dress. She looks confident and powerful because of her attire and gaze, yet helpless because of her abandoned surroundings,” says Rutherford. “This contradiction is what I find sexy about the photograph.” The subject of Abandoned Housewife, 2005, is Darenzia, a fetish model from New York City; the photograph was taken four hours outside of Los Angeles toward Las Vegas. As noted in reGeneration: 50 Photographers of Tomorrow (Aperture, 2006), Marla Rutherford’s photographs depict a surreal universe in which people from the worlds of sadomasochism and fetishism are posed in ordinary surroundings. This juxtaposition brings the strange and banal together, and allows viewers to feel more at ease when faced with people whose practices are seen as deviant. In her brightly colored images, Rutherford uses a style close to advertising photography, in order to seduce the viewer. Her portraits of people from America’s counterculture are brought out into the light of day and treated as commonplace.

From iona’s show that opens at Sandroni.Rey in Los Angeles on Saturday. The show is called the epidemic of excess, the detriment of denial.

iona explores society’s obsession with material consumption, vanity, and greed as well as the exchange between different cultures and personal identity. brown’s figured attempt to make up for their perceived inadequacies by donning fake hair and elaborate clothing. The material excess represented in these new pieces obscures ad dilutes the identities of the individual figured themselves. What were cultural stylistic identity markers have become exaggerated adornments and products to be consumed and desired.

This body of work speaks directly to me! When I was in NY last month, I met up with some gallery folks for dinner. On the way to dinner, they suggested we stop in at the Marc Jacobs store in the Village. Sure, why not. I don’t have a thing for Marc Jacobs. I was just humoring them. But then I walked in and got a whiff of young, fashionable, good looking people making purchases and I wanted to be one of them. PLUS, there was a 40% shoe sale going on. Shoe boxes were piled up everywhere and chicks were frantically looking for their sizes and checking out what everyone else was wearing. I got caught up in the excitement and bought a pair of shoes that, though fabulous and discounted, were much too expensive. Haven’t even worn them yet.

Note the extremely cute fluffy, gray cat in this particular painting! Do you think Ralphie may have influenced her work in any way?

Artcade magazine launched its web version last night in a spectacular night of music, art, and revelry. Hundreds of DC’s emerging creative class showed up at a raw retail space in the Matrix condo building on 14th Street to celebrate the birth of what will be an influential and original voice in the DC art scene. Look for the print version this fall. Congratulations Rachel, David, Oz, and everyone else for doing an outstanding job!

If you haven’t checked out the Transformer Gallery lately or yet, you should really stop by this tiny space on P Street (a few doors down from Whole Foods). It’s a non-profit gallery that promotes truly emerging artists. They’re doing an outstanding job putting on thought-provoking shows, raising money through prestigious entities like the Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts and the Meyer Foundation, and sponsoring educational events such as a recent panel discussion on art collecting. Support for this gallery is support for an emerging art scene in DC.

Also, save the date! The 4th annual Transformer Gallery Art Auction will be November 17 at Halcyon House. The venue is impressive – the auction will actually take place in John Dreyfus’ studio attached to the back of the house. You should come to the auction just to see this place. But I think you should buy some art, too. It’s Transformer’s big fundraising event of the year and you could get a deal on some great art. That’s where I picked up my Iona Brown print last year. Oh, and yours truly is the co-chair of the event along with my good buddy Allison Cohen. I’ll post more details as we get closer to the event date.

Transformer is very proud to present E4: Station to Station, an exhibition resulting from the fourth installment of our unique peer critique and mentorship program, The Exercises for Emerging Artists. Featuring four dynamic DC area based artists – Rebecca C. Adams, Carolina Mayorga, Rob Parrish, and Fereshteh Toosi – and guest curated by Niels Van Tomme, E4: Station to Station consists of four individual artist projects at Transformer incorporating video, sound, performance art, and conceptual mixed media installation.

Each of this year’s Exercises artists will take over the Transformer project space for one-week, beginning July 11, 2007, to present new work resulting from their peer-critique and mentorship experience at Transformer. Opening events including performances and artist talks will take place each Thursday, July 11 – August 5, 2007 from 6:30 – 8pm. “I wanted to involve artists who could further transform the gallery into an experiential space; into temporary stations of media art,” states Van Tomme. “Each of the artists brings a very specific approach to Transformer in establishing a relationship between their work, the gallery space and the audience.”

Beginning in March through June 2007, the artists participated in facilitated bi-weekly meetings discussing the challenges they face as artists, the inspiration that helps propel them forward, as well as their artistic intentions and goals. Launched in March 2004, The Exercises for Emerging Artists was created to support artists at critical points or crossroads in their professional growth and development; to stimulate and encourage artists as they create new work.

In addition to several peer critique sessions, participating artists receive mentorship and feedback from area gallerists, more established artists, professors, and curators. This year’s mentors included UMBC’s Associate Professor of Visual Arts Steve Bradley, composer and visual artist Alberto Gaitan, Transformer’s Executive Director Victoria Reis, The Corcoran’s Curator of Photography and Media Arts Paul Roth, Provisions Library Executive Director Don Russell, and E4: Station to Station guest curator Niels Van Tomme.

E4: Station to Station – Schedule of Artist Projects

July 11 – 14
Carolina Mayorga: New Trends in South American Cuisine

Don’t miss the launch of the revolutionary South American style recipe that will change the way you’ve thought of cooking. Cook it, taste it, buy it, all at Transformer.
Opening Event: July 12, 6:30 – 8 PM

July 18- 21
Rob Parrish: Jack

Mixing elements from the television series “24″, the Department of Homeland Security’s Homeland Security Advisory System, and archival footage, this installation explores the sensation of being an object of manipulation.
Opening Event: July 19, 6:30 – 8 PM

July 25 – 28
Rebecca C. Adams: Compulsory Figures and ∞

Using sound and large street drawings to interpret an archaic division of figure skating, this indoor and outdoor installation captures the sonic environment of practicing compulsory figures on ice, while visually striving to reproduce similar exercises on pavement.
Opening Event: July 26, 6:30 – 8 PM

August 1 – 4
Fereshteh Toosi: You’re not as green as you are cabbage-looking.

The accounting firm of H&R CABBAGE will calculate your personal carbon emissions with a free report to take home. Bring in a reusable water bottle or coffee mug and enjoy a freshly carbonated Italian soda while you wait.
Opening Event: August 2, 6:30 – 8 PM

Exhibition Hours: Wednesday – Saturday, 1-7pm & by appointment

Images (left to right): Carolina Mayorga, Rob Parrish, Rebecca Adams, Fereshteh Toosi

Come to the launch party for Artcade, a great new DC art magazine.

This is cool. The Washington Project for the Arts is sponsoring a bunch of art installations and performances on 14th Street between P and V Streets through July. Welmoed Laanstra curated so you know it will be good. Here’s an article from the City Paper about the project.

JUNE 15 – JULY 28, 2007

(con)temporary art installations, performances,
and interactions on 14th street between P & V.


Various locations, P-V / Workingman Collective (Janis Goodman, Peter Winant, Tom Ashcraft) / Untitled (Bird Habitats)

July 10-14, 5-8pm, 1515 14th / Kathryn Cornelius / ART SERVICES: (WASTE) [Performance]

1520 14th (Metropolis) / Roberto Bocci / Cycles, Elements and Spaces in Between

1520 14th (Metropolis) / Michael Cataldi / Endcamp

1541 14th / Tom Greaves / Compliment Machine

1801 14th (The Garden District) / Carolina Mayorga / New Arrivals

1345 S (parking lot) / Matthew McGuinness & Eliza Newman Saul / The Bureau of Misdirected Destiny

1829 14th / Franz Jantzen / Will the Circle be Unbroken?

1831 14th / Piero Passacantando / Untitled (Bamboo)

1840 14th / Michael Lease / For the Lack of Words

July 28, U Street Metro / Mary Coble / Marker (DC) [performance]

2000 14th (Duke’s Shoe Repair) / Elizabeth Lundberg Morisette / Shoe Tree

2021 14th (Busboys & Poets) / Various locations, P-V / Linda Hesh / Desolation Mugs / Desolation Doorknob Hangers

Karry Skarbakka’s photographs are amazing. This one is called Trestle and it’s now part of our collection. Check out his website for more amazing images.

Here’s what he says about this series of photographs:
Using myself as model and with the aid of climbing gear and other rigging, I photograph the body as it dangles from dangerous precipices or tumbles down flights of stairs. The captured gesture of the body is designed for plausibility of action, which grounds the image in reality. However, it is the ambiguity of the body’s position in space that allows and requires the viewer to resolve the full meaning of the photograph. Do we fall? Can we fly? If we fly then loss of control facilitates supreme control.

Newest addition to art collection – by Lisa Marie Thalhammer from her Lot Lizard series.

One of Cynthia Connolly’s photographs is featured on the art walk where the old convention center used to be. I like that instead of just putting a boring path through the parking lot, the city opted to line the walkway with art.