Exhibition dates| May 13th - July 1st, 2017
Opening Reception | May 13th, 6pm
Brand Library & Art Center
1601 West Mountain Street
Glendale CA 91201
Welcome to Venison's Weekly Blog! Here you will find advice, show reviews, thoughts and short articles by the Venison Team. We welcome your input comments and thoughts in return!
Thanks for reading Venison Magazine!
Brand Library & Art Center is pleased to present the artwork of Amabelle Aguiluz, Sarajo Frieden, Wakana Kimura, Karin Lanzoni and Hiroko Yoshimoto in an exhibition that embraces the fluid and instinctive nature of each artists’ practice while honoring the sophistication of their invention.
Exhibition dates| May 13th - July 1st, 2017
Opening Reception | May 13th, 6pm
Brand Library & Art Center
1601 West Mountain Street
Glendale CA 91201
Review by Roula Seikaly
Walking into the gallery, the first piece I encountered is Home Sale Prices By Year 1971-2015, Median San Francisco, CA, Median California, Median United States (2017), which represents the series Data, Rumberger’s latest undertaking. Strung between a supporting column and the gallery’s eastern wall, the commissioned piece visualizes a data set using gray, gold, and yellow thread. Color choices are important to the artist, who noted in our email exchange that gold and yellow used in this piece reference popular and positive notions – “the golden state” and “gold rush” – commonly associated with California. Sourcing data points – average sale prices of homes in this instance – from various online sites as the raw material for her sculpture, Rumberger’s delicate creation portrays the indelicate reality that owning a home in the Bay Area is simply out of reach for all but the very rich. As an artist who was priced out of her studio space, the cool or impartial statistics with which she works are all too familiar. Further into the gallery, additional data visualizations such as Rape/Sexual Assault Against Intimate Female Partners in the US 1992-2013 publicly portray the personal horrors through which far too many women suffer privately.
Directly opposite Rumberger’s threaded creation are four wall-based sculptures which, at first glance, suggest dioramas or mock schemes for potential installations, but they are not. The fantastical views, all representing the artist’s long term series Metafictions, are discrete objects. Home Sale Prices… is mirrored in the tiny display, its physicality perfectly matching the gallery layout. The artist emphatically asserts that the miniatures – and this applies across the spectrum of her practice – are works unto themselves, and that the overarching “metafiction” assignation is realized when the miniature and full-scale versions of the work are completed. Using metafiction as a grounding point, our attention is drawn to the objects on view, how they relate to and depart from one another in form and content, and ultimately the impermanence or fiction of exhibitions.
Seeing Rumberger’s large and small pieces exhibited together satisfies a kind of desire, perhaps one akin to starting and completing a project. In this way, she neatly ties up what would otherwise be nagging experiential loose ends. But meeting desire’s needs is not guaranteed. After seeing small representations from her beautiful/chilling series The March Hare, I sought out – perhaps subconsciously – the piece’s larger pendant image. Hung at a distance from their tiny counterparts, these nearly life-sized paintings juxtapose popular notions of rabbits – fertility, sexuality, life – and death, here represented in eyes drawn from photographs of Civil War militia men. In this instance, my desire was satisfied. Conversely, what reads as incomplete, when either full-size or miniature versions of her data series installation or pieces from other painted series - Santa/President and Modernist Alchemy – are not accompanied by their complementary piece, a palpable cognitive lack is felt.
San Francisco-based curator A.R. Vazquez-Concepcion untangles threads of history, knowledge production, and colonialism in Bestiario/Menagerie, a vibrant, 10-person group exhibition on view at Adobe Books Back Gallery through January 28.
Bestiario or “bestiary”, roughly translated, describes a compendium of animals – imaginary and real – that was bound in book or illuminated manuscript form. Dating to second century Greece, bestiaries reflected a desire to understand the natural and spiritual worlds through collecting, categorization, and comparison.
Review by Roula Seikaly
Centuries on, cabinets of curiosities were amassed as Enlightenment thinking and imperialist expansion brought western Europeans into contact with worldwide civilizations. Through dedicated study of physical artifacts, it was believed, a civilization’s value could be assessed. The sinister footnote to that ambitious effort is, of course, that colonized societies were treated as foreign, as the other, and in need of “civilizing” through paternalistic intervention.
The artifacts that were assembled in personal and later, public curio collections, were regarded as representations of the unfamiliar, and knowledge derived from observation was passed generationally as authoritative. In Bestiario/Menagerie, the objects and the artistic practices that produce them reject containment and the purported “authority” of knowledge through provocative juxtaposition.
Vazquez-Concepcion makes the most of Adobe Books’ intimate gallery, spacing each object to hold its own and, when considered relationally, deliver a deeper and decidedly more troubling understanding when viewed together.
Marcela Pardo Ariza’s “Dissident” (2016), in which a humorously unruly pencil line interrupts the banal familiarity of a Post-It note, is both funnier and more frightening next to Fernando Pintado’s “Non Nobis Domine Non Nobis” (Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us) (2016). Its title excerpted from a short Latin hymn that expresses humility and thanks for spiritual blessings, this four-panel charcoal and paint piece portrays crusading Knights Templar who waged multiple wars to reclaim Jerusalem from Muslim invaders. In this pairing, notions of rebellion expand and align an innocuous graphite mark and state-sanctioned terrorists bent on delivering apocalyptic violence in the name of Christianity.
Stretching diagonally across the gallery, Santiago Insignares’ colorful biomorphic sculptures “Restriction”, “Implication”, and “Posthumous” (2016) address traumatic experiences and how memory enforces such events as mile markers in our lives. Without knowing that the meat of Insignares’ inspiration includes systematic massacre, displays of tortured bodies, and domestic violence, these sculptures might earn little more than a passing glance. Insignares interrogates authority’s unchecked abuses, and how knowledge is obscured to mask the gravest offenses.
The motley assemblage that is Bestiario/Menagerie demonstrates both the best and worst of human inclinations: curiosity is an evolutionary gift. Building knowledge through collecting, comparing, and analyzing has helped the human species amass a compendium more comprehensive than any bestiary or curio cabinet could contain. When knowledge, or presumed knowledge, is used to subjugate others, we lose our humanity. Through these objects and the juxtapositions they activate, the knots of history, knowledge production, and the ever-present danger of using it to exploit others begin to unravel.
How often do we get out work done a week or so early? Not often, in my experience. Luckily Camilla completed her works for Meager Form early, and we got to reap the benefits. Here's a look into my studio visit with her!
Meager Form is comprised of sculptures and collographs that depict the relationship between strength and vulnerability. Camilla, who has been greatly influenced by TS Eliot for this series, spoke with me for about an hour and we discussed everything from art, to neighbors, family and social trends.
Preview by Nazish Chunara
Camilla used her own hands as a guide for these sculptures and was able to vary them in size and gesture. They're beautfully depicted, all the way down to the lines in the palms which are curiously detailed. The weight of hands versus the weight of hair provide a little fight. You only have parts of a body to create an identity, if that's even what you want to do. Camilla's works are intentionally left unidentified which leaves ample room for wonder. Whose body could be attached to these hands or feet or braid of hair? It could be yours, mine, your professor's, maybe your mom from a few years ago or the hand of someone you have yet to meet. It's pretty magical to think about.
Though these limbs leave room for you to elaborate on, they are also representative of the things we potentially have in common. We're all ideally born with ten fingers and a set of life lines to get our palms read. The exploration of identity is high right now, which makes Camilla's works stand out even more. There is no eye color, shape, finger nail, or skin color to point out and run with.
Alternatively, there's is much security to be found in There is space all around you. Wrapped in itself, these feet are kept warm, cozy and safe. It's like creating a personal bubble; there's space for yourself provided by yourself, which immeditely led me to the idea of the imporance of self care.
We can have our heads in the clouds, just as long as our feet are on the ground - isn't that how it goes? Camilla's works trigger a number of varying thoughts to tinker with.
Reminicent of etchings, the prints below were made through the process of collography. The images are carved onto board, covered in ink and transfered onto paper. This was my first experience with it. Of course, I asked her if she ever considered incorporating color (I bet she's gotten that one too many times.) I realized that it's unnecessary because the texture created with this technique is so deep, that they are extremely vibrant as is.
Meager Form ships off to Penny Contemporary this week. If you have the chance, I recommend saying hello to Camilla and checking out the work personally!
PS, Camilla has a new system of screen printing and it's with watercolor. Check out the following piece, along with many others in With Liberty and Justice for Some at Walter Maciel Gallery Los Angeles, starting January 7th, 2017.
Thank you for having me over Camilla!
Preview by Nazish Chunara
Tides is a series of wearable garments by Amabelle Aguiluz, whose work we've been following since the beginning of the year. Her influences very much derive from bodies of water and the organisms that live in them. From the first time I saw her work at Art Share LA to her collaborative residency with Szalt Dance Co and their production of Water Stories, we've seen so much growth and transformation in the making and function of her hand spun, machine knit, designs. Materials include found, donated yarns, and 100% fair trade cotton, allowing the artist to keeping the project eco-friendly.
Amabelle has worked with fashion in the past, so when I visited her studio her for an interview for our Spring issue, I asked if she'd do it again. Needless to say, I'm extremely excited about this!
I wanted to work with light and shadow to see the knitted textures in motion. The goal was to see how each of the pieces transform through layering by building texture upon texture.
Tides is a project inspired by sea foam and water created without set patterns. Each piece is unique and would be difficult to replicate. I started with experimenting with small shapes relying on intuitive knitting to guide me. Then I molded and hand stitched each knit swatch to build each garment. The process became a puzzle and each shape became part of a collage. The layers show stages of growth and my interest in texture and volume. The knitting approach happens very organically; it is how I relate to the way patterns form in nature and in the ocean - free flowing, never creating the same shape twice.
Amabelle Aguiluz is an artist living and working in downtown Los Angeles. Her practice incorporates clothing, textile, fiber sculpture and installation processes that study rhythm, nature, poetic expression and human experience captured through the repetitive motions of crafting. She studied at Politecnico di Milano, Italy and graduated in 2011 at The Fashion Institute of Technology, New York BFA in Fashion Design with an emphasis in Knitwear Design and Textiles. Her installation and wearable artwork has been exhibited at Art Share LA, MorYork Gallery, The Last Bookstore for Maiden LA 2016, Women's Center for Creative Work as part of LA's Public Art Biennial Current LA: Water in Los Angeles and The Triennale Internationale des arts textiles en Outaouais, Canada.
Designer // Amabelle Aguiluz // @amabelleaguiluz
Photographer // Mike Carreiro // @mikecarreiro
Model // Ashley Chung // @chungashley
Hair // Sydney Costley // @sydney_costley
Stylist // Natalie Hemmati
MUA // Aaron Paul // @aaronpaulbeauty
These Days LA // @thesedays.la (for those of you who have your eye on the new organic cotton bulky knit sweater)
Tokens, Gold, & Glory
Hap Gallery -Portland, OR
July 14–August 28, 2016
Artist’s Talk: July 30, 2:00pm
Interview by Danielle Schlunegger-Warner
Listen Type: Podcast
She received her BA in Practice of Art with Honors from University of California, Berkeley and is currently an MFA student at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, studying Fiber and Materials. Jennifer creates installations using various materials that discuss the role of art and how it is perceived differently, depending on whether it has been created by a man or a woman.
Here's a look into her work:
Has writing for Venison influenced your art in any way?
I'm not sure that it has especially influenced my art making, but being a part of Venison has shown me the importance of staying connected with other artists and encouraging one another to further their practice -- because it's easy to be disheartened in this field.
"...Venison has shown me the importance of staying connected with other artists and encouraging one another..."
When did you decide to join Venison?
I wanted to get involved with Venison after Amber and I became friends and I got to know all the people working on the magazine. Everyone involved creates such a supportive community for each other and I wanted to help contribute and be involved in that support system.
You were interviewed by Amber in the Autumn of 2014. What is it like going from being interviewee to interviewer?
Being interviewed by Venison was a huge confidence boost. The idea that someone liked my work enough to want to put the time into promoting me was very validating and it opened a lot of doors for me. Getting to interview other artists has been a really valuable networking tool and a way for me to promote the artwork I admire while giving other artists the same kind of validation.
I asked Danielle if she was a full time artist. It surely seems so with all the work she's been producing.
I work with my hands pretty much all day, even though I do have to have a day job. I work in a wood shop making panels and stretcher bars for other artists. My day job has opened up a lot of great connections and friendships. I like to think of my self as a full time artist, just with many different jobs: Having day job to pay for my studio/supplies/ groceries etc, making the actual art, promoting my art and upcoming shows, looking and applying for opportunities, and maintaining a good family and friend life outside of making art.
There are definitely some wonderful online magazines that are doing very similar things as Venison now, which is fantastic! I never started the company with dollar signs in my eyes, but I started it to build community and give a platform for emerging and pre-emerging artists who were making unusual, compelling, or risky work.
"I never started the company with dollar signs in my eyes, but I started it to build community.."
As a self-promoter, I like having the magazine; it relaxes the situation and allows us to have a real connection. Some of the relationships I've developed have grown into shows of my own work, while others haven't, but I have good relationships with a lot of spaces which is most important. I've also gained great interpersonal skills. Gallery openings and meeting curators and directors has become fun. Instead of freezing up and having no idea what to say, I have a million questions and am able to show the genuine interest I’ve always had. Now people don't assume I'm just another artist out to promote myself. Instead, I can be a person of press who is interested in what the organization is doing. That way there isn't so much pressure to promote myself. I also find that if I introduce myself as both an editor and artist, it puts the curator or gallery owner at ease. You can sense them tense up when they think they are being hunted down by an artist interested in their space.
As a fiber and installation artist, you create large scaled, interactive works. Your most recent project, “Nature Suit” falls within that realm but brings new light to installation art. What were your driving forces for this project?
They walk along groomed trails that wind through groves not 30 yards from civilization. Marine county, one of the wealthiest places, is also leading in outdoor living. The products marketed to them: sweat wicking ultra-light weight jackets, hiking poles, 'Fresh' scent bug sprays, 1,000 dollars a night "rustic glamping trip."
It's so ridiculous how idolized an "authentic" interaction with nature has become and how far from "authentic" these trips and products make us from the reality of actually being in nature. So, that is the Nature Suit----the next step to making a product substitute for the "authentic adventure." A way to look like you've had adventures in nature without the hassle of going outdoors. It also highlights the aspects of being in nature that people try to avoid through buying all these products. As if bug bites and scars are the cool factor in our outdoor living trend.
My initial question is often, why and do you enjoy it? When I asked Adriana this, she mentioned she loved being introduced to artists. Artists she may not have been able to meet if it weren't for the Venison connection--or community---being built. She stated, "The most exciting part is finding artists across the globe struggling with the same existential questions that I am. It's very comforting, and quite an inspiration to keep moving forward. "
As Lead editor, I can imagine you’ve reviewed a ton of art! What do you find most important when it comes to interacting with fellow artists?
I would say the mode of dialogue is most important. That is, how I am interacting with the artist: is it a digital or face-to-face conversation. The personal in-studio conversations are joyfully awkward and ultimately richer than a digital conversation.
"... It gives them an opportunity to really reflect and see things through another artist's eyes."
Both your paintings and sculptures entail great detail to depict a heavy message revolving around how women are perceived. When did you realize this was a subject to cover in your art?
It's actually a very clear moment that I started focusing on this subject matter. It was in late 2013 that I started working in a not-so-nice part of San Francisco that I really started to feel the burden of being a women in an urban environment. Burden is really not the right word for it. It is a much more complicated feeling than a single word can describe. But at that moment in my life, which was (and is) smack in the middle of my young naive adulthood, burden is the best word to describe what I was feeling. Here I was 23 years old and I became aware that a lot of my identity as a women had been force-fed to me by an overwhelmingly male perspective. This realization started to permeate into my art because it seemed like it was the only thing I had going that was really worth investigating. Two years later and my work is barely scratching the surface on such complex perceptions
"...the question now is how do I manipulate the imagery to say something more meaningful and bite back a bit."
Tell me a little about your work and how you got started as an illustrator?
So I've always been an illustrator really. I was the kid at the back of the classroom doodling on the fronts, backs and insides of my Math book. Its been a thing that I’ve felt I’ve always had to do. Although through school I kept my creativity to myself until I discovered illustration in my final two years at high school and fell in love with the art world.
Did you attend university, if so where and what did you major in?
I have just completed my third year specializing in Illustration at Massey University in Wellington and plan to finish my degree in the near future at at a University in Melbourne. I have also done 6 months in Textile Design which is something else I am interested in.
What are some of the recurring themes or imagery and their significants?
Your pieces seem like part of a story, do you see them as little series or interconnected in some way?
I think that all of my pieces do have a connection, as I do like them to be consistent and coherent as one body of work or like a storybook. I also love the idea of creating works that women can relate to and connect with, one way or another. I like the pieces to show emotion, which usually comes across as Melancholic, so I’ve been told!
Can you tell me about the significants/ meaning of the titles for Lucidity and Prickly head?
Lucidity is actually hanging in my mums living room, she fell in love with it, it reminds her of me! The name’s meaning is primarily explaining the transparency of being up in your own head, and how clear things are up there! Almost like a lucid dream.
Prickly head imagery signifies the barrier that everyone naturally puts up. almost like a mental defence system. Prick them before you get pricked!
What other things do you do beyond illustration work? (Day job, hobbies?)
Other than Illustration, which to be honest is what most of my spare time goes towards, I will bake, play some video games or do yoga. My illustration has been my part time job for the past few months, so since I am not studying any longer, I'll be looking for full time work to help save for my move to Melbourne.
What is your studio space like/ where you make work? What is your current studio "jam" (what you are watching or listening to while you work?
I see that you have a furry studio assistant, what is his/her name and tell me a little about him?
Haha my cat is amazing! His name is Balto, he’s a bit chubby and he loves cuddles, licking, sleeping and sitting on my work. He accompanies me every day, and is good company! I will be flying him over to Melbourne once myself and my partner have found a place!
Thanks again for this opportunity, and hopefully I’ve answered everything!
Our Venison team uses this blog page to post short articles about events, projects, journeys, and art adventures that we find relevant to the contemporary lives of fellow artists.
18th Street Arts
99 Percent Invisible
Adobe Backroom Gallery
A Narrow Passage
Art And Culture
Art Camp Spotlight
Bay Area Art Show
Bay Area Press
Camella Da Eun Kim
Camella Daeun Kim
Charles Hartman Fine Art
Charlie James Gallery
Chinatown Los Angeles
Contemporary Art Magazine
Cordesa Fine Art
Durden And Ray
Elizabeth Leach Gallery
Fellowsof Contemporary Art
Fourth Wall Gallery
Francois Ghebaly Gallery
Gathering: A Venison Magazine Retrospective
How We Got To Now
Human Led Climate Change
Jennifer Chen-su Huang
July 15th 2017
Kent Fine Art
La Art Scene
Los Angeles Art
Los Angeles Art Scene
Lost And Foundry
Meline Hoijer Schou
New York Art
Paul Loya Gallery
Swerdlow Art Group
The American West
The Getty Center
The Knitting Tree La
Totally Rad Gallery
Wendy Red Star
World Trade Center