We talk about the challenges and the major upside of having a space like the Skylight Gallery and how she interacts with artists during installation!
Recent Abstract Expressionist brush paintings by Japanese artist Kiro Uehara are amazing! I talk a little about why they are a break from the trad AbEx concepts, how they fit right in, and why I love them!
Mary Abstract Expressionism was not killed by Pop Art. In fact, it continued in a fascinating direction, and has bubbled up from time to time into the popular art discourse. Mary Weatherford is one of those Abstract Expressionists who happened to have been born after the deaths of Pollack, Kline, and Ryan. Her work is in the vein of Joan Mitchell, Morris Louis, and the de Koonings, and though this is hte first piece of hers I've witnessed in the flesh, I was incredibly moved by experiencing it. it is a piece that comes to me with an impact of Joan Mitchel's 1970s and 80s work or early Philip Guston abstract pieces, but then there's the neon, a single stripe of neao buzzing blue through teh center, immediately bringing the power of Barnett Newman to the party. In a sense, this is a synthesis of the great Abstract Expressionist work of the 1950s, but using the neon tube seems to push the idea that this is a piece of technology as well, and since neon signage is the way I see the 1950s, it all ties togehter. The fact that this is a piece of 2017 is so impressive.
The Anderson Collection is so smart with this piece. It is placed across from the Frankenthaler, between a Morris Louis, a Robert Motherwell, nest to the alcove where slumbers Lucifer, the Kline, the David Smith, the Gottleib, and the Rothkos. It is set among the Abstract Expressionist master that is seems to be speaking of, or perhaps speaking to, and that makes it a heavy punch.
In late 2015, when I started thinking about putting together a program dedicated to the Arts. Not all docs, not all narratives, not all live action, not all animation. Something that took Art as the focus and played within it. It worked! I thought it was a real fun program last year, and like a studio exec with a solid film on his hands, I thought I'd try it again this year, since there were a lot of films with Art as a focus.
I had no idea who much win this would produce.
The 2017 program The Truth in Art is not only the best program concept I've ever had, and we discovered an amazing array of films that just flat-out work. Roughly half docs and half narrative films, they all play within the realm of the Arts, and one that deserves special mention is Real Artists.
Sophia is a filmmaker. She's good. Really good. Anne is working hard to get her to join Semaphore Studios. Anne lets her in on a secret - the secret of all Semaphore's success is based on an illusion of creativity. I'll leave you there.
I know it's not fair to compare new works to existing works, but I'm going to any way. Real Artists is based on a Ken Liu short story. I love Ken Liu, a fellow Hugo-winner! I like him a LOT! The story is so great, and here, director and writer Cameo Wood rises to the source material, and using the perfect level of CGI and precise and wonderful cinematography, she establishes a visual styling that brings her work up to a level that is unbelievable. The acting is so smart, not showy nor staid, and the script is taut. Is it better than the story? A fool would answer that question not realising that they are two very different worlds and it is nigh-impossible to compare, but within their realms, they are on the same level within my view.
The other thing this brought to mind is the wonderful short animation Technological Threat that I wrote about here. There is a very similar thread between them, though the animation takes it into comedy and Real Artists into drama. I can't stress enough how wonderfully they both are in their arenas, and if I was programming a shorts section for a festival or museum around the theme of "Workers & Technology - Fear & Loathing" I would include both.
This is a magnificent film, and one that I am certain will bring much thought, not only about what you see on the screen in this film, but in every film you encounter from here forward...
Real Artists shows as a part of the Shorts Program 3 - The Truth in Art showing at the Century Redwood City on Thursday March 2nd at 330pm, Saturday March 4th at 1030am and Monday March 6th at 930pm. It also shows at the Hammer Theatre in Downtown San Jose on Friday, March 10th at 145pm.
Christopher J Garcia - Curator, Fan Writer, Podcaster, and a guy who just loves art.