Thursday, January 22, 2009

Be here now and not

Oops, I forgot I had a blog that my mom and sister read to know that I'm still alive and kicking! I'm alive, not kicking, and re-emergering from a post-Obama stupor...bye-bye Bush!

Since I last posted, Pocket Utopia hosted a blogger conference; I'm re-posting Sharon Butler's re-cap here. Next up, we're serving coffee every Sunday afternoon at Pocket Utopia and discussing everything from Mike Kelley to cultural innovation with Jonah Bokaer of Chez Bushwick, served up by artist in residence Kevin Regan.

It seems to be happening here. I'm up and blogging again! Serve up the coffee!

Monday, January 19, 2009

A Process

I have 2 quotes on my desk today, both relevant:

Be awake in the time of revolution... paraphrased from Martin Luther King, Jr.

and from one of my favorite books: The Timeless Way of Building,

The process of unfolding goes step by step, one pattern at a time. Each step brings just one pattern to life: and the intensity of the result depends on the intensityof each one of these individual steps.

pictured above: Sharon Butler's note paintings from her week long residency at Pocket Utopia.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Quote me.

Today, when asked, "How does the market impact your social space? Are you hearing things from artists? Is there relief? Are you free from all market pressures?" I replied:

"As an artist, running an offbeat spot that multitasks as an exhibition, salon, and social space and site of an artist-in-residence program, I am specifically putting artists in charge of their own careers. Pocket Utopia opened 2 years ago along side the market hubbub and because of it.

Things are changing in the artworld and it's not a surprise but artists still have to be in charge, which is also not a surprise. Pocket Utopia seems to be benefitting from the downturn because we always put artists first."

Sharon Butler's picture of Pocket Utopia above only hints at her hard work and ability to make parts whole. She's been in residence all cold week long and I've gotten the sense that she's been very productive.

I ran into Sharon on the subway on her way to buy more art supplies! I also ran into her husband on the subway (on a different day, different train). What kind of small town is this? One where artists in charge of their own careers are shivering, which is also not a surprise.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The show, the artist, and the demo

Kayosities has opened and besides being exhausted after installing and pouring drinks, the show is quite uplifting. Each artist puts forward their work and allows us in.

Of course, it is my mom's show, and the wall of her art, spanning 50 years, makes us smile and she stole the show at the opening...Elissa Levy upends images from the sports pages. Negative space, in her work, is funky and existential, un-cramped, fun and welcoming.

Björn Meyer-Ebrecht's installation of collages and sculptures take shape while you look and walk. You can stand back and take it in.

Kay taught us all milk resist, the day after the opening, which is a magical technique that reveals the light by applying black ink. Here are the directions:

Milk Resist Painting


Brushes, round and flat
Rice paper
Milk 2% or skim
Japanese ink

1. Paint your design on the smooth side of the rice paper with milk put aside to dry
With the wide brush, cover the back (rough side) with gray ink
The part painted in milk will stay white
After the painting is dry, you can paint on the front with ink or color

Paint on the front with milk
Allow to dry
Paint on the front with the black ink
The ink will resist
Allow to dry
Cover the back with gray ink

Paint with black ink on the front
Allow to dry
Paint a second design on the front with paintings can overlap
Allow to dry
Cover back with gray ink

Experiment!! Allow for something to be revealed.  

Sharon Butler has been settling into her one week residency at Pocket Utopia and will be leading a salon on art-making, art-blogging and world-making on January 18th at 4:00 pm.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

A Fresh Start

Art about to happen...I love the clean white walls, well lit space. It's exhilarating.

Opening this Saturday night Kay Thomas: “Kayosities” with Elissa Levy and Björn Meyer-Ebrecht in the project space and a new print edition by Deborah Brown

exhibition dates: 10 January – 15 February 2009

OPENING, Saturday, January 10th 6:00 – 10:00 pm


1037 Flushing Avenue

[Just off the Morgan L, Bushwick]

Open Saturdays and Sundays 12-6 p.m. and by appointment Call: 917-400-3869

image: Björn Meyer-Ebrecht, Untitled, 15 Collages I, 2007, each 10 x 15.25 inches collaged, found images with spray paint

image: Elissa Levy, Phantom 58, 11x 8.5 inches digital print (ed. of 20)

image: Kay Thomas, Flowers in blue, yellow and violet, 2008, 11x14 inches sumi-e ink on paper

Pocket Utopia is pleased to present “Kayosities,” featuring the work of Kay Thomas with Elissa Levy and Björn Meyer-Ebrecht in the project space and a new print edition by Deborah Brown. Proceeds from the sale of the print will be donated to Women in Need, providing housing, help, and hope to New York City’s women.

“Kayosities” is a tribute show to Kay Thomas. This “cabinet of curiosities,” will feature among other things; Thomas’s collection of sumi-e brushes, photographs from her glory days in Greenwich Village, several years of journals, and her classical sumi-e paintings.

Elissa Levy will present an assemblage of photographs, prints, drawings and sculpture. Using the newspaper as source material, Levy abstracts the human form, obscuring it, repeating and pairing its parts with colored tape, beads, and drawn blocks of color. Björn Meyer-Ebrecht approaches architecture, through drawing, sculpture and collage, constructing a complete composition by superimposing abstract forms and found images, in which the architecture is always reflected as both: a concrete site and ideal place.

Sharon Butler will be a resident artist from Sunday, January 11th through Sunday, January 18th. In conjunction with Ms. Butler’s residency there will be a special blogger conference and salon discussion to include: art-making, art-blogging and world-making on Sunday, January 18th at 4:00 pm.

Kevin Regan will continue as a resident artist performing his “coffee talk” on designated Saturdays (refreshments served in exchange for dialogue).