Tracey Baran @ Women In Photography

"Me, Myself, and You", 2007, Tracey Baran

"Me, Myself, and You", 2007, Tracey Baran

So, while I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here, I’m usually quite fond of the work posted (bi-)monthly over at Women In Photography. The current exhibition was full of wonderful photos, which turned distinctly bittersweet when I scrolled back up to read about the artist (I almost always prefer to experience someone’s art, then read about them and/or it, then view it again) and discovered that Tracey died last year after a brief illness at the ripe age of 33.

The online exhibition is full of good work, and there’s more here, so go look at some gorgeous pictures and grieve the loss of yet another wonderful talent too soon.

Steph’s As-Of-Yet-Untitled Painting: Cartoon

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Oranje 2009: Jennifer Parker

by Jennifer Parker

by Jennifer Parker

FOR EVENT SUMMARY AND ALL REVIEWED ARTISTS CLICK HERE

Jennifer Parker, who was running the Kitsch booth at Oranje 2009, is an old(er) acquaintance of mine. She used to be my coworker back when I was just getting back into photography, and we just never could manage to see eye-to-eye about things, especially the website I was trying to design for her (back when I was young, cocky, and stupid. Well, younger, cockier, and stupider anyway.)

Actually, jParker Pictures (as it was at the time) started the seed that would eventually become Sparkle, after a couple frustrating years with failed Flash implentations and some heartfelt time finding a better way to do what should be simple.

But I digress. Her new website looks gorgeous (Chris Spurgin, this hat tips for you, although I’ll probably remain a bit more fond of jQuery than Mootools I can’t argue with the splendid results.) Which is good, because her work is gorgeous. The gal has a way with light that really kinda captures what art photography is even about, and I’m seeing a lot more humor creep into her newer works. Her Kitsch booth was a pleasant and almost Dada-esque experience, at once saying it was about nothing and at the same time probably make more of a statement than it meant to.

Her portfolio remains as eclectic as ever, but there’re quite a few gems in there. Check it out over at http://jparkerpictures.com/

Oranje 2009: Kate Wagner

"Lioness," Kate Wagner

"Lioness," Kate Wagner

FOR EVENT SUMMARY AND ALL REVIEWED ARTISTS CLICK HERE

Continuing looking into some of my favorite highlights from Oranje 2009, this time around we have Kate Wagner. Kate, who’s paintings (and, apparently, mixed-media works) took up most of the wall outside the X103 / Indy Uprising stage area, seems to keep her online stuff through artifolio. Having somehow missed grabbing her card at the event, I’ll have to rely on Google to be correct in that.

Kate apparently runs a therapeutic art program for adults with developmental disabilities, which is basically one of those noble gestures that I don’t think I’ll ever be able to rise to, and would feel guilty even if I was for trying to rob Kate of the recognition she’s due. Bravo, Kate, and keep up the good work.

Kate describes her work as being her “electric honey,” which is an odd phrase that I’m not quite sure how to interpret yet, and which I’m not sure entirely meshes with the rest of her statement (although I’m notoriously sketpical of artist statements and whether they even can mean anything). But, whatever “electric honey” does mean, her work is a loose and energetic blend of styles and frequently mediums. A lot of her work uses loose and colorful brush strokes to define the canvas plane, upon which the figural subject matter is superimposed through a separate series of loose and scribbled outlines.

Most of her painting and mixed media work deals with the female form, and most of it seems to deal with ideas of isolation and introspection.

Also on her portfolio site is a body of photography which I don’t remember from Oranje, and which I’m not sure I entirely like. It strangely lacks the color of energy that defines her painting, focusing on somber still-life compositions and desaturated or monochromatic palettes.

At any rate, her profile statement is here: http://www.artifolio.com/artist/missionart/

And her portfolio is here: http://www.artifolio.com/missionart/gallery/

Art vs Art 2009: The Day After

avaSo, last night was 2009′s “Art vs Art” out at the Vogue. For those who may not know, Art vs Art is an annual event here in Indy. The idea is, one weekend artists come out and have 4 hours to complete a painting with provided materials. Then, those works are put online and are voted on, and a selection (16, I think) go on to the main event. At the main event, two paintings are chosen at a time, and the audience cheers and shouts for which one it likes best, and the winner (as measured by a digital decibel meter) goes on to the next round. The loser is placed in a workhorse while a giant wheel of awful deaths is spun. Before the death is carried out, the painting gets one last shot, and an on-the-spot auction is performed, with starting prices based on the round ($150, $250, $250, or $450). If no one saves it, it’s subject to being hacked with a clever, a chainsaw, smeared with shit, pummeled by a jack-hammer, etc…

"Judith Deheading Holofernes", Caravaggio

"Judith Deheading Holofernes", Caravaggio

"The Beheading of Darth Vader," currently unknown

"The Beheading of Darth Vader," currently unknown

So, this was the first time I got to attend the main event. It was pretty fun, but I think the real fun is in being one of the artists, so next year I’ll be participating. There was an upset near the end when in the last round the darling of the show, a pop-culture homage to Caravaggio’s Judith Beheading Holofernes which became dubbed as The Beheading of Darth Vader lost to a very solid gothic piece the MC dubbed Bride of Frankenstein.

Things got a bit better afterwards, though. Despite its narrow loss, The Beheading of Darth Vader did find itself a buyer, and survived the night. The year’s grand prize winner, in a statement of what I assume was defiance (since she mumbled enough for it to be indiscernible from the audience), opted to try for more than the $3,500 prize,

"The Bride of Frankenstein", currently unknown

"The Bride of Frankenstein", currently unknown

which meant letting her work risk death at the wheel. And so of course the wheel landed on “Instant Death” and the piece was artificially separated via chainsaw. C’est la vie.

Another painting died via Dirty Sanchez. Seriously. Latex glove, bucket of manure, and some stlylish gestures ended in one painting wearing a stankstache.

There were a few nice works, though I don’t yet know who to attribute them to. Find all of them on their site (at least at the time I’m writing this) at http://www.artvsart.com/, and some of my favorites or memorable ones after the jump.

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Oranje 2009: Nathan Monk

FOR EVENT SUMMARY AND ALL REVIEWED ARTISTS CLICK HERE

OK, I was going to start this with Michael Altman, but his website appears to be down, so we’ll start instead with Mr. Nathan Monk.

"Off Track", Nathan Monk

"Off Track", Nathan Monk

Nathan, who it turns out is the brother of a nice chap I went to high school with, was up on the second floor (right next to Jennifer Parker’s “Kitsch” booth.) His work has a gleefully eclectic approach to medium, incorporating paint, wax, found objects, collage, and more. His style is also wonderfully mad, with a lot of work focusing on almost-cartoon imagery, only at times to extend to seeming rather like Marcel Duchamp after a long night snorting powdered Kandinsky. And that’s most certainly a good thing.

"Revenge Comes In All Shapes and Sizes", Nathan Monk

"Revenge Comes In All Shapes and Sizes", Nathan Monk

Nathan, who attended Herron for a spell before embarking in a different direction with his wife Rachel, has apparently not been exhibiting for a few years since the birth of his son. So, it was a treat getting to see him out at my first Oranje. His booth was busy the whole time I was there, and only partly because out front was a table full of all sorts of stuff which he was encouraging people to crowdsource into five different found-media pieces, which he was raffling off.

You can find Nathan’s work over on his site, http://www.nathanmonkart.com

Thank you, everyone, Guinness…

guinness bellThanks to everyone who made it out tonight, or who wished me happy birthday, or you know. Thanks especially to Aud, Nick, Nakul, Tara, Jody, Sarah, Abe, Doris , Jay and Dottie, my parents and sister, and oh… this little beer company called “Guinness” whose birthday coincides with mine. Thanks to patience, friends, and fun Nick and I hung out at The Claddagh long enough that when the Guinness Girls finally arrived to shower t-shirts upon the drunken masses, we were rewarded with special gifts: motherfucking bells.

Yup, that bell pictured there is, though unmounted, of exactly the same variety as you will find at any decent Arby’s or Long John Silver’s near the door, usually with a plaque instructing you to ring it if they did well. And now I have one. Sweet.

It was a good night, I look forward to tomorrow’s Art Vs Art out at The Vogue, and if you couldn’t make it out tonight come see me then and we’ll shout our lungs out to save paintings from demise.

Categories: biographical  

It’s my birthday, yo

guinness250Today, everybody, is my birthday. And, if you will refer to the graphic at right, I can tell you it’s apparently also Guinness’ birthday. So, Nick and myself will be hitting up The Claddagh downtown Indy tonight at about 5:45 PM (17:45), and we want all y’all to come out.

Me especially. ‘Cause it’s my birthday. Come out, let’s talk literature and pop culture and nonsense. It’ll be fun.

Categories: biographical  

It's my birthday, yo

guinness250Today, everybody, is my birthday. And, if you will refer to the graphic at right, I can tell you it’s apparently also Guinness’ birthday. So, Nick and myself will be hitting up The Claddagh downtown Indy tonight at about 5:45 PM (17:45), and we want all y’all to come out.

Me especially. ‘Cause it’s my birthday. Come out, let’s talk literature and pop culture and nonsense. It’ll be fun.

Categories: biographical  

Tomorrow’s My Birthday

Tomorrow, September 24, is my birthday, just to let you all know. It is also the worldwide celebration of the 250th Anniversary of Guinness. Now, I’m not a huge Guinness fan, but something like that falls on my friggin’ birthday, and I just gotta do something for it.

So, tomorrow at about 5:45pm, Nick and I are crossing the street and entering The Claddagh, downtown Indianapolis, to kick off the night. And you’re all welcome to join us, in lieu of a photo walkabout this week.

So, come on, hop out, it’ll be a fun night.

Categories: biographical