Willow Meets Quail, 2022. Oil on canvas, 16 x 20 inches.
Summer Greetings! Happy Pride! And HELP!
It's been hot as hell here. We just got over a monstrous heat wave last week and I think my brain melted. And now we're due for another one starting today. I'll probably need a good soak in an ice bath right about now, but I ain't got no tub! That's just so sad, isn't it? Or maybe there are bigger problems in the world today, aren't there?
Okay, well, the summer isn't just starting off with a scorcher, it's also beginning with an explosion of shows. I don't know how it happened. Some of them came unexpectedly. But regardless of how they came, here I am—busy as ever—again. No stopping this train, people. It just goes and goes. So, let's get right to it.
First, I wanted to share a couple of pictures of that card game I did these little paintings for. Maybe you remember me mentioning it. I was commissioned, along with a few other high desert artists, to contribute to a cool new game called Invasion Joshua Tree.
It will be released very soon in local shops and on the internet. Developed by Blake Hodges of Wild Heart Ranch, it's really very fun and will make you laugh too. Be on the lookout.
Onto The Shows
I'm currently in one at the Landcaster Museum of Art and History (MOAH) which runs until August 21st. It's a group show of highlights from their permanent collection called Human Natures.
Fenced Hills, 2015. Mixed media on canvas, 12 x 12 inches.
Later this month I'm in an annual benefit fundraiser for Angels Gate Cultural Center in San Pedro called Awake in Color. It's an auction that begins on Saturday, June 25th from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Then, June 30th to July 30th will start a group show of studio alumni: A Gathering of Angels. There's a closing reception for that one on Saturday afternoon, June 30th, 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm. I'm going to try to attend, but I'm not sure. (But maybe don't count on it.)
Then, there's another group show in San Marcos that starts on July 9th at SIP Art Space with art lectures on July 23rd and August 20th. That one is called High Desert Carnival, curated by artist Anna Stump. She gathered up a few of us desert locals and put together something rather special. The artist's opening reception for this one is on Saturday, July 9th from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm, and the exhibit runs until August the 20th.
Joshua Tree Park, 2021. Watercolor on Arches, 6 x 9 inches.
I really wanted to make the reception for High Desert Carnival, but unfortunately, I can't because I was asked to be in a 2-person show by curator Zara Kand. The receptions are on the same night. This 2-person show is called Psychoactive Summer and will be presented at Art Queen in Joshua Tree. I'm showing with Art Fool (Maurice Laflamme) and the show runs from July 2nd to August 28th. The reception runs during the Joshua Tree Art Crawl: Saturday, July 9th from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Art Queen East Village Gallery is located at 61855 29 Palms Hwy in Joshua Tree. I will be there.
By the way, I will be showing a bunch of older works at the Art Queen show and some that have never been shown before. I'm excited.
Two Girls, 2012. Oil on canvas, 20 x 16 inches.
So, jeez, that's five different shows. I just counted them myself with my chubby fingers. That's the first time I did that and am surprised it's that many. Good thing I'm showing different work for each of these places because, mostly, I've been working my tail off for the "big one." That one is less than twelve weeks away. Oh, don't worry, I will most definitely remind you about it before the next newsletter. Not incessantly or anything, just a little bit in my own unique and fancy way.
The Big One
When I say "The Big One," I'm talking about THIS LAND—my solo show that I've been working on for the last year. It's less than twelve weeks away, and since this is the last newsletter before that show, I must tell you all about it—again!
I didn't think it was possible, but I'm shockingly way ahead of schedule, as far as finishing up the actual artwork. I'm working on the very last piece for this show as I type this. I'm waiting for some leaves on a Joshua Tree to dry before I layer some darker ones on top. Once I'm done with this one, what will I do with myself next? I'll get to that in a moment.
First of all, don't forget to come to this very all-important show that opens at Craig Krull Gallery in Santa Monica on Saturday, September 10th from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. September 10th is still technically the summer, which is why I'm urging you now. THIS LAND will feature new paintings and a drawing installation. I'll be showing a few (4) oil paintings from my Exodus Project, but aside from those, everything else has never been exhibited before.
Buried Ruins, 2022. Oil on gessoboard, 24 x 24 inches.
What's this show all about you ask? Oh, you didn't? Too bad.
THIS LAND surveys the high desert of Southern California, specifically Joshua Tree. It's my personal inspection into what it means to possess or own land in the Mojave. Here I am expressing my sense of play and imagination in an attempt to change conventional perspectives of land "ownership." That means, maybe you can imagine a kind of fantasy on a plot of land instead of building an Airbnb! Use your mind instead of your pocketbook. That's the basic theme.
To speak more on this, at the halfway mark of the show's run, art critic and arts editor of LA WEEKLY, Shana Nys Dambrot, will lead and moderate my artist's talk at the gallery on Saturday, October 1st at 11:00 am, just in time for brunch! Pretty cool, eh? What a nice time of the day to spend at the beach and see some art. We'll have coffee and donuts And I'm working on a little catalog that should be done in time for this event.
If you can't wait for the catalogs, come to the opening reception and pick up a FREE 19 x 13-inch poster (first come, first served).
Heck, come to both events and show your support! How often do I do major solo shows? Not often.
I'm excited to begin a new body of work. I will not be addressing the desert for a while. I'll be going in a new direction completely. I'm looking forward to loosening up and painting some scenes from old family photographs, plus doing some non-representation abstract work. Some of the pieces are sketched out, but there's nothing I can show you yet. Perhaps in the next newsletter. For now, you'll just have to imagine it. ;)
I also have an interview coming up in an online magazine, VoyageLA, but I'll announce that next time too. All in all, I've got nothing else for ya until then. So take care and I'll talk at you soon.
I also want you to know that I am so very grateful you are here. Thank you!