Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A note from Saturday's Opening.

At the opening the other night, I received the following comment about my work.

"I'm completely pedestrian when it comes to this stuff, and I don't know a thing about art, but I just love the color in your pieces. And then I spend all kinds of time trying to figure out which logos these letters belong to."

I told her she was doing it right. She was! I got similar responses from people throughout the night: the color, the logos, possible word games, memories.

There is little point to over-thinking a work of art, meaning: you shouldn't have to spend a lot of time looking at it and thinking, "what the hell is this about?" Granted, sometimes it is important to think about context, place, current events, etc. But, if the work is doing its job right, it'll give you things to think about - things to look for.

A few years back, a show in Alexandria, featuring Four Letter Words did the same thing. People started looking at blocks of words, they found words of interest, they recalled what the homonyms and homophones meant, and then they looked for relationships between words. Art should be fun, from time-to-time.

Monday, February 13, 2012 Me me me

I've seen a variety of these floating about Facebook the past few days. So, I thought I'd make one of my own as a satire for all of the others that are floating about the Interwebs. Let's see if it goes viral!

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

My latest exhibition, upcoming at Adah Rose Gallery.

Below is the text from the press release for my upcoming exhibition at Adah Rose Gallery, in Kensington, MD. The opening is Saturday, February 11, 6:30 -8:30.

“The Pleasures Here Are Well Known”
featuring the work of John James Anderson and Susan Stacks
Opening Reception, Saturday February 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m. February 8 - March 11, 2012

Adah Rose Gallery, 3766 Howard Ave Kensington Md, 20895
Hours: Fri-Sun 12-6 and by appointment.

Music by Walker Road 

John James Anderson
The printed word and the acquisition of language are the principal ideas in the work of John James Anderson. His first series, “Building Blocks,” adopts the playful vocabulary of pop art with familiar logos and graphics which require reading through a lens that is both nostalgic and cerebral. Mr. Anderson creates a graphic alphabet from the eye- catching lettering of soda cans, candy wrappers and cereal boxes. In his second series, “Out of Print,” language and the evolution of our collective literacy is also explored, this time in the decline of print journalism. Mr. Anderson collected the front pages of national newspapers and carefully erases portions of their content, resulting in graphic and poetic musings on the fate of mass communication.

John James Anderson earned two BFAs from Iowa State University in graphic design and fine arts. After earning an MFA in painting from American University, he taught at American University, George Washington University, and The Corcoran College of Art and Design. He is currently Associate Professor of Art at Prince George’s Community College. He has shown extensively in the DC area, most recently at the Arlington Arts Center, Transformer Gallery, Glenview Mansion, and the Stamp Gallery at the University of Maryland.

Susan Stacks
Beginning with the unconsciousness of a doodle, but executed with the commitment of surgery, Susan Stacks creates drawings with pencil and pen that are artifacts of a meditative experience. These intricate and elegant works reference landscapes, microscopic forms, and cartography. As she draws, a twist becomes a tug, a dash a dot. Her influences are as varied as novels, mythological figures, plant and bacterial life, rock stars and vending machines. Ms. Stacks refers to her drawings as emotional maps, parasites, friends, and penance.

Susan Stacks recently earned an MFA from the School of Art & Design at the University of Michigan. She recieved her BFA, Magna cum laude, in sculpture, art, and visual technology from George Mason University in 2008. During her three years at the University of Michigan, she worked as a Graduate Student Instructor. She has received several grants and fellowships, both as an undergraduate and graduate student, and has exhibited both in Virginia and Michigan. This is her first show at Adah Rose Gallery.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Getting Ready for a New Show

By first broadcasting work from an old show.

In August I exhibited "The Gun Show" at the Washington Project for the Arts. For all of the quotes about Heller vs. DC, or all of the statistics regarding the disparities in Washington, or the failed Second Amendment blog written by James Madison's zombie, an interesting centerpiece for the exhibition was a video that illustrated DC murders between 2006 and 2010.

Lots of them were committed with a fire arm.