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Nicole Eisenman at Susanne Vielmetter this weekend

Hello friends, I was in for the last day of Steve Roden’s show and got to see Nicole Eisenman’s paintings propped against walls and cabinets in the back. Eek and wow this woman can paint. And she has a sense of humor, too. Nice touch, that. Having only the briefest of moments with the work, and having no idea what the show will look like I’m going to let Eisenman do all the heavy lifting for this post and only upload images as my part of this post. Yes my friends I plan to cut and paste directly from Nicole Eisenman’s poster which also serves as the text for the press release. I bet you will be surprised anyway and also have a few gut laughs. You may even snort. Eisenman seems to be something of a nut. This is all good because I still need to pack, run some errands, have dinner with Brian Getnick and talk about his Native Strategies performance project and sleep before our 6:30 AM flight to Philadelphia and the wonders there-in. I am a busy pumpkin today. Quoting from Nicole’s prose poetry: “Nicole Eisenman New Paintings” (Do you know? My version of WordPress lacks an asterisk. Pretend you see an asterisk at the phrase “New Paintings.” This will lead you to the below list of possible show titles.) (Insert asterisk here also) Art Jams! Bean and Time Please Love Me Lap Trauma Gazing Inward at my Problems My Paintings Ruined My Liver anatomy of barbarism that homeless smell juxtaposing different things memoirs of the drug clinic juggling time and space i am flying,...

Chinatown and environs; Overduin and Kite: April 23-24 and April 30-May 1

I only got a few (modestly) successful pictures at Amy Sarkisian’s “American Gag” show at WPA in Chinatown, there are more and better (if smaller) on the gallery website if you like. Amy’s work is often pretty funny – her 2008 exhibition at then Sister Gallery (now Brennan & Griffin in NY) “So Is Your Face” showed paintings executed in a cartoon-ey manner similar to these sculptures at WPA. “Perv” has a creepy, engaging smile and wears mirrors on his brogues – the better to peer up ladies’ skirts; “Couple” have vaguely opposing parts (think opposable thumbs here, not opposing armies) but both feature Groucho masks; Underwear-guy (title mis-forgotten) is a ball of interlocking wood panels, garbed in tighty-whiteys. Amy Sarkisian, “American Gag,” WPA 510 Bernard St. Chinatown 90012; through May 14,...

UCR Thesis Exhibition, Cameron Crone

The UCR grad studios are in a motel near the freeway in Riverside. In the central courtyard a swimming pool has been filled in and planted with philodendra and other lush greenery. In Cameron Crone’s second floor studio, a barely reconditioned smallish 1970s space, large photographic images were tacked up on all the walls and two wood constructions occupied the open space in the center. I recall seeing the edges of several projects in various stages of completion: one was the image below, from Crone’s website, an image titled “Tigers” one in a series called “Stripes.” Cameron told me that the source for this image is a polyester blanket – one of those crazily unreal feeling polyester fluffs that can be invested with any image from Winnie-the-Pooh to, in this case, a sports logo. Crone selects pattern-based images then uses a light pen to connect – and obliterate – the logo, treating them as geometry rather than signifier. I think Crone sees these as shapes which he then connects, calling our attention to them even as he causes them to disappear. The blanket-shaped consumer goods themselves have a weird relationship to surface – the image we see as surface is in fact embedded throughout the material so that if one cuts into it there is nothing but puff and picture. Crone’s actions on the originary image drawn from these goods heighten the colors and the questioning of surface: I am challenged to hold in one dimension the several layers of imagery both physical and digital. Like a kid in a candy shop I like the colors and the taste...

I interrupt this broadcast: Piano Spheres on May 10

(Hello from the future, May 3 to be exact. You are correct, this is not a new post (it dates from April 20). BUT FAIR WARNING: Susan Svrcek’s concert is next Monday May 10, (TUESDAY Geoff, the 10th is Tuesday!), so I made this post sticky for a while. Enjoy! Skip down for some new posting, beginning May 5 with Camilo Ontiveros’s show at Steve Turner, Marie Jager’s show at Pepin Moore, and Homeboy Industries / Otis.) (Back to normal on Thursday night. I’ll make this one sticky later.) (I like saying that!) My friends, the good people of the City of the Angels and music lovers who have the ability to fly: the masterful Susan Svrcek will play Tom Johnson’s “An Hour for Piano” on Tuesday, May 10 at 8 PM at Zipper Hall in the Colburn School. To orient you with this music, which is not familiar to me, I offer you a link to a YouTube page with at least one ten minute chunk of the music. (Aren’t fans delightful people? The dedication they bring to their passions!) The author of said YouTube page suggests reading Johnson’s own Album Notes as you listen to the music. I can vouch for the intelligence of this suggestion! I just read and listened for ten minutes and had a blast. Last year at MOCA they had an example of Carl Andre’s concrete poetry on view. This was a piece of typing paper with a story that, in my head, wound around and around and around. The words also wound around the page, and somehow the effect was doubled and...

UCR Thesis Exhibition: A Predominance of Bockelman (w/4-23 update)

Hello friends, Having yesterday begun posting images from the UCR MFA Thesis Exhibition only to veer radically into a discussion of my own practice, and indeed having then hijacked the entire post to announce my recent addition to the American work-less class; I shall now continue my path toward ever greater exposure of the arts. Riverside, here we come. Embarrassing thing to admit: I do not have any titles for this work. I failed to pick up a works list. I am one sad puppy. I shall gather the needed informations sirs / madams and inload to blog them you...

Monday madness at Notes on Looking

Hello my friends, First, a development on the home front that I’d like to share with you: the budget axe has fallen on my day job. I am no longer working with HED to make a sleeker and more efficient architectural services deliver model. As of Friday I am exclusively Geoff Tuck, “Notes on Looking.” Two and a half years ago when I started the Notes on Looking weekly emails I had several hundred weekly readers. Over the months with FOCA and then with FYA my readers list grew to several thousand a week. Now, on my own banner I reach a similar number of local and international readers. I accomplished this in thirty months working only ten or twenty hours a week. All of you know who I am and seek out my thoughts. I’m proud of what I’ve done with limited hours. Can you imagine what I can do working full time? To use one of my favorite locutions – I’m stoked. There are several ways I can carry forth on my plans, I shall be a while considering and researching. Feel free to make contact: [email protected] When I look around the field of journalism and communications I see many content providers, internet and paper based, and hybrids. Many of them are replicating an older style of delivery: sort of top down, single-source, in the objective voice and at a remove from what is being discussed. In addition I find a new style – one that takes advantage of free or cheap labor for the promise of greater exposure. The first feels old fashioned to me. The...

So Funny It Hurts, last night

Last night at LACE was a rich and full experience for me. Paul Outlaw’s performance “What did I do to be so black and…” first, was a beautiful thing and second, pushed a lot of my own buttons. The “So Funny It Hurts” panel discussion, which followed and which I moderated, was exciting and fruitful. More as we go along. I always find myself nervous and frightened after the fact of such a public event. During the night and then again this morning, as I reflected on particular moments in the 90 minute event, I found my face clenching without my conscious direction. “Oh god, did I really say that? Damn – she looked at me like I was nuts” and “crap – even when I’m being stable and in charge, (or ‘performing’) people can still see me. My body and the phrases I use completely expose what I’m feeling, even though I’m trying hard to think and look smart.” Um, yes indeed everyone is a performer – or at least I am. I was reminded how important it is for me to quiet controversy and to avoid conflict. (I am sort of a natural ‘moderator,’ perhaps.) At a point when the questions became juicy I began to flush and stammer. I know once again that my focus is often on the conflict as a fact, and not on the facts under discussion. This moment became a turning point in our discussion, and my instinct was to attempt to move away from the confrontation. I am lucky that others in the group were eager to take it on! For a charged time we all called back...

Bay Area Figurative Art

I got an email last week from Zach Leener – about the Bay Area Figurative Art 1950 – 1965 book (Caroline A. Jones, 1989, catalog for exhibition organized by Jones at SFMOMA) and his own early obsession with it “while an undergrad in Baltimore – far, far away from my California home.” Zach appreciated “all those painters who saw AbX going on and then applied their own casual (ccccasssssuallllllllllll) strokes – they were such an antidote to NY and weirdly announcing a devotion to sunshine and sunlight…” he went on, “I’ve always loved that Joan Brown painting in the LACMA collection (Girl in a Chair, 1962) it’s so impossibly thick, ugh – so gross and so good.” We are lucky my friends that said Joan Brown painting is currently on view, see the full image below for details. And this is how it starts, isn’t it my friends? With an obsession. We find a thing absolutely compelling yet that is also repellant to us. Both of these feelings are strong attractors. When I went back to the book this time, after my introduction to it in 1998, it was for the paintings of David Park. Good Lord – I had the good fortune to see a bunch of Park’s paintings at the Oakland Museum a few months back and they are so so magic to me. About which more later, I do have a path here, that I am finding, if you stay with me. Also in his email to me, Zach noted that “regionalism is such a perverse and underrated position…” I might not have noticed the now obvious matter...