International icon of black ink, artist Michael (GIANT) LeSage incorporates a broad swathe of influences and skills in the creation of a singular, unmistakable aesthetic. Mike's central practice, drawing, is informed by his training in architectural drafting, his illustrious career as a tattooist and worldwide exploits writing on walls. ~$27 at Amazon
San Francisco based photo magazine Hamburger Eyes releases MANKIND ISSUE No. 2 ($17), the second issue of our documentary series containing photographs of, about, and by earth humans from all over the planet featuring PHOTOGRAPHY BY: PIOTR PIETRUS, PAULO ARELLANO, AARON WYNIA, KINGSLEY IFILL, PETER McCOLLOUGH, JONNEK JONNEKSSON, GRANT HATFIELD, ELMO TIDE, ZEBULON ZANG, JOHN OLIVER HODGES, DAVID POTES, RAY POTES, RICKY ADAM, BRANDON GETTY, DAN THOMPSON, NINA MOURITZEN, NATE IGOR SMITH, GUY VINCIGUERRA, AND DAVID DUNNICO.
Scott Bourne was a pro skater who moved to Paris many years ago to work on this book - Based around the author's real life adventures, A Room With No Windows possesses deep erotic tones, as well as the idea of soul searching through sex. Heavily plot driven it is a first person narrative that takes you on a historical roller coaster ride through a turbulent San Francisco of the 90’s. A powerful, urgent, electric tale of comradery and perilous true love set in a city that’s being pulled out from under its’ characters by capitalism, AIDS and the isolation of modern life. Gritty and unflinching language sprung from Southern roots relays heists, petty scams, genuine friendship and finally the transformative loss of the person you didn't realize was your home.
Release party for it tonight in London. Being London is 8 hours ahead, it's going on right now.
NYC based photographer Ben Pier mailed his book Teenage Teeth ($24) to us awhile back featuring 68 pages of beautiful images which, according to Pier, are a documentation of American youth as seen through his lens.
Born in 1980 and raised in Missouri until the age of 19 when he went on to study documentary photography at Columbia College Chicago. After finishing school he left the heartland for New York City where he now lives and works.
We got to check out Tiffany Bozic's forthcoming book Drawn by Instinct (published through Gingko Press) last night, and it's a beauty. 150 high quality pages features Bozic's line of work over the last 10 or so years. It's out in approx. 3 weeks time, and as soon as we know where you can buy one, we'll let you know. Will retail for $40 and worth every penny.
Tiffany Bozic and her new book out through Gingko Press
We got a preview of the forthcoming Matt Furie children's book (his first book) published by McSweeney's McMullens (out August). The fanciful story is told through Matt's illustrations and is wonderful in its simplicity and beauty. We'll for sure be giving it as gifts to all our friends with little ones... Bonus is that the sleeve comes off to double as a poster.
Street artist Above sent us a copy of his new book Passport (published through Zero Publishing). In fact, he sent us the limited (200) boxed edition which comes in a huge/ smartly designed monster sized passport complete with a print inside. Not sure how to store it on a book shelf as it would need to be leaned against a wall it's so huge.
The book chronicles his career as he traveled the world first adding his arrows to electric lines and walls to his interest in stenciling as it got more and more popular. Our favorites in the book would be the signage he did with RIPO.
ABOVE started traditional graffiti of tagging freight trains in California in 1995. ABOVE moved to Paris at the age of 19 where he started painting his trademark arrow (pointing above) all around the city. Since then ABOVE has been consistently traveling around the world doing many large self-financed "tours" with each tour exploring a new medium or style of artworks. ABOVE has been successful in putting his street artworks in over 90 cities in 60 different countries around the globe.
WALLS & FRAMES: FINE ART FROM THE STREETS Edited by Maximilliano Ruiz
Published by Gestalten, Germany.
24 x 26 cm
The FedEX man just sung through FFDG with this treat for us to share with you. A thick ass book featuring some of the best "street artists" out there today. We add quotes next to street art, because it's debatable whether all of these artists are street artists or not, although, it could be said that many came from a street art/ graffiti background- or aethestic. Whatever the situation, it's a great book and thanks to Gestalten for sending us a beautiful copy for us to enjoy. You can get your own copy for only $37 at Amazon. It's well worth the price.
Walls & Frames launch parties will be hosted at Gestalten Space Berlin on December 1st and at Pictures on Walls London on December 8th. For the occasion each launch party will showcase a limited edition of original hand-finished book sleeves made by Walls & Frames featured artists.
I recently got a copy and shot some preview images of The Art of Todd Bratrud: Seen Unknown, the second installment in Mark Batty Publisher'sSeen Unknown series, edited by Winston Tseng. The Seen Unknown artists series covers artists and designers whose work in various fields --from sneaker and apparel design to product packaging, posters, high-profile ad campaigns, and fine art galleries --are often recognizable, though their creators' names remain unknown--until now. (Back in March, I went to check out Marc McKee's show at HVW8 Gallery, whose book The Art of Marc McKee, was just released as the first part of the Seen Unknownseries.)
The Art of Todd Bratrud: Seen Unknown
Winston Tseng and Todd Bratrud
Publication Date: November 2011
Page Count: 96 pages
Size: 6.5 x 8.5 inches
A nice package from Winston and the folks at Mark Patty Publishers. Thanks for the book and catalog!
This fine book is filled with 96 pages from Todd's wild imagination, featuring his bold lines and eye-popping colors. It covers all of Todd's many art and design tentacles from work with his own companies, The High 5 and Teenage Runaway, to the best in the business, including The Skateboard Mag, Consolidated Skateboards, Flip Skateboards, Enjoi, Familia Skateshop, Burlesque Design, Volcom, Nike SB, Burton Snowboards, and Creature Skateboards. Oh yeah, did I mention that the book is only $19.95? A fine affordable price I might add.
ABOVE PASSPORT BOXED EDITION examines the street artist that has blanketed the world with art covering over 90 cities in 60 countries. The book includes hundreds of plates and quotes from artists across the globe and introductory statements by Shepard Fairey, FAILE, Wooster Collective - Marc and Sara Schiller and Tristan Manco.
Hardcover book: signed/numbered - 12.25 x 12.25" (31.1 x 31.1cm)
Over 120 color plates
is housed in a vinyl clamshell box placed in a publisher’s shipping box
Size: 20.5 x
16.5 x 2.25" (52.1 x 41.9 x 5.7cm)
9.5 lbs / 4.3 kg
Giclee print: signed/numbered - edition 200 - image size 11 x 16" (27.9 x
40.6cm) / paper size 13 x 18 (33 x 45.7cm)
ABOVE PASSPORT BOXED
EDITION examines the
street artist that has blanketed the world with art covering over 90
cities in 60 countries. The book includes hundreds of plates and quotes from
artists across the globe and introductory statements by Shepard Fairey,
FAILE, Wooster Collective - Marc and Sara Schiller and Tristan Manco.
encountered ABOVE’s art on the streets of Paris in early 2003. His
large-scale trademark arrows were painted on roll down gates, trucks and
storefronts with impressive coverage throughout the city. ABOVE is
extraordinarily driven. To paraphrase Radiohead, “ambition can make you look
pretty ugly,” but in ABOVE’s case, his ambition makes the streets look very
engaging. I am very impressed by ABOVE’s diligence, but after I got to know
him and his artwork more, I began to realize that his output is not evidence
of selfish ego, but of a lust for life, a utopian life, where his
generosity, and curiosity, and his pursuit of creativity and
social-consciousness have led him around the world making more friends than
the time to act as tour guide for me and my wife and our two young daughters
in a city he knows well and we didn’t. The gesture made me greatly value
ABOVE’s friendship and reinforced my belief that what you give is what
you get. The Karma Police are not coming for ABOVE even if the police
vandal squad is." ---Shepard
Fairey, Los Angeles, California
From WIKI (born circa
1981) has been creating public art since 1995. ABOVE
is an international contemporary street artist who keeps his identity
concealed and is widely known for his multi-layer/full color social and
political stencils, spinning wooden "arrow mobile" installations, and large
mural "word play" paintings. ABOVE started traditional graffiti of tagging
freight trains in California in 1995. ABOVE moved to Paris at the age of 19
where he started painting his trademark arrow (pointing above) all around
the city. Since then ABOVE has been consistently traveling around the world
doing many large self-financed "tours" with each tour exploring a new medium
or style of artworks. ABOVE has been successful in putting his street
artworks in over 90 cities in 60 different countries around the globe.
To be released Oct 14th - Gingko Press is pleased to announce the release of BANKSY - Myths and Legends, the perfect holiday gift book celebrating the art and tall tales surrounding the iconic street artist Banksy. ~Details
Fecal Pal/ SF based artist Jesse Balmer and author Eddie Wright are putting together a comic adaptation of Wright's novella Broken Bulbs (which is about a sad sack inspiration addicted nobody). They've got a Kickstarter page up asking for enough money to give them both time to work solely on the project for a few months and to cover printing costs.
About Broken Bulb -- "If you truly enjoy reading the latest, force-fed pabulum that can be found on The New York Times best seller list, stay the hell away from Broken Bulbs. However, if you welcome the challenge of tackling something totally authentic, surreal, disturbing and existential (and yes at times downright weird!), I strongly recommend Broken Bulbs. Where else can you find a stream-of-consciousness narrative full of references to such diverse subjects as A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child, Peter Brady, Norman Bates, Albert Einstein, Iggy Pop, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Woody Allen, as well as a demented mailman and six-foot-tall hamster wearing a suit (not kidding!)." --Alternative Reel
Decades before there was Banksy, there was Blek Le Rat, the French stencil artist who, to some, is considered the godfather of stencil street art. To celebrate his 3 decade long career this winter, a book will be launched at this year's Art Basel Miami Beach and a string of gallery exhibitions throughout the United States and Europe. Get the full scoop, and read our interview w/ Blek from 2008.
Want this copy for FREE? The first person to stop in FFDG tomorrow, Wednesday, and asks for the book, gets it. We're open 1-6pm, and you can view Damon Soule's current show Then What Happened.
"It’s like Holden Caulfield with his phaser set on kill. Phonies beware." –Time Magazine
"The Death Ray reads as a cautionary parable and an acidic rumination on the travails of adolescence…Clowes demonstrates what the comic book can do and literary fiction can't."–The Observer UK
Teen outcast Andy is an orphaned nobody with only one friend, the obnoxious-but -loyal Louie. They roam school halls and city streets, invisible to everyone but bullies and tormentors, until the glorious day when Andy takes his first puff on a cigarette. That night he wakes, heart pounding, soaked in sweat, and finds himself suddenly overcome with the peculiar notion that he can do anything. Indeed, he can and as he learns the extent of his new powers, he discovers a terrible and seductive gadget - a hideous compliment to his seething rage - that forever changes everything.
1pm update: Well, that didn't take long. Right at 1pm when FFDG opened the doors, Clark (below) swooped in and grabbed the book. For the rest who may want the book, go here and order one.
Drawn and Quarterly was kind enough to mail us out this massive (658 paged) magnum opus collection from Chicago based graphic novelist Anders Nilsen. 10 years in the making, Big Questions follows the minimalist story detailing the metaphysical quandaries of the occupants of an endless plain, existing somewhere between a dream and a Russian steppe --- the story's birds and snakes have more to say than their human counterparts and there are hints of the classic hero's journey, but the easy moral that closes most fables is left here as open and ambiguous. Rather than lending its world meaning, Nilsen's parable lets the questions wander out to go where they will.
If you want this beautiful book, stop in FFDG sometime during open hours (Wed-Sat, 1-6pm) and grab it. First come, first... can have the book for free. It's a great collection, and as much as we want it, we'd rather you enjoy it.
The thing is thick.
VIA DRAWN & QUARTERLY: Come out to see the tour that's more than ten years in the making! That's right, folks, the brilliant (and handsome...) Anders Nilsen is going on tour for 600+ page masterwork Big Questions, and he's coming to a town near you!
West Coasters, he's starting with you in July, so make sure not to miss him:
07/20 Family, LA
07/21-24 Comic-Con, San Diego
07/26 Needles and Pens, SF
07/27 Pegasus, Berkeley
07/29 Floating World, Portland
07/30 Fantagraphics, Seattle
07/31 Lucky's, Vancouver
This day may have been inevitable, but now it's finally here. In its attempt to take over the world - or at least everything that can be bought and sold in the world, Amazon is launching an art gallery.
This summer Amazon is planning to launch a Fine Art Gallery where customers will be able to purchase original artwork offered by a select group of invited galleries via Amazon.com. ~continue reading
A new HBO documentary looks at the work of street artist JR, whose giant portraits force people in troubled areas to confront the humanity that's all around them... On the day JR found out he'd won the $100,000 TED Prize, the French pasteup artist found himself in China being questioned by police for doing his thing on the streets of Shanghai. ~continue reading
Street artist JR HBO documentary premiered yesterday, May 20th
Art lovers, collectors and gallerists will gather on Thursday for Hong Kong's inaugural edition of Art Basel, sealing the city's status as an international art hub and Asia's leading art destination... Hong Kong has surged to third place in the global art auction market behind New York and London and Western galleries are falling over each other to open franchises in the former British colony. ~continue reading
Wowzas, there's a lot of art happenings this weekend, and while you're making the rounds, be sure to stop at SFAI's MFA show Currency opening Friday, May 17th at the beautiful old SF Mint Building (88 5th Street).
SFAI's 2013 MFA graduates—working in painting, photography, printmaking, film, sculpture, installation, digital media, performance, and across media—will present work that embraces the Institute's signature spirit of experimentation and conceptual risk-taking.
Opening reception: Friday, May 17, 7–9 pm & running through Sunday 11-6pm daily. -- complete details
London based Pedro Matos opens the solo show Building Castles Made of Sand this Friday in Los Angeles at the Martha Otero Gallery featuring a new series of oil paintings on canvas and azulejo panels - a traditional Portuguese medium of hand-painted, tin-glazed, ceramic tile work.
San Francisco -- CCA opens their 2013 MFA Thesis Exhibition this Thursday, May 16th at their SF campus. Every year another graduating class produces steller work. One of the best SF art events worth getting to, but be sure to get there early as there's always a long line. ~details
Ryan De La Hoz' show in the Upper Haight at RVCA runs through this Saturday... And the next time you're in the Mission, be sure to swing through his new shop on 14th St, Cool Try... We need to get over there soon and do a little photo feature for ya.
The Book and Job Gallery (San Francisco) really stepped it up with the opening of Daniel Chen's loveBlast on May 4th. Complete with a doorman, piano player, old fashioneds, and some really nice paintings, I could hardly believe I was at the Book and Job. The paintings varied in size, and the show was balanced nicely between them, the spray-can work on the walls, and the smaller drawings displayed throughout. The kind notes Chen wrote on the walls are certain to brighten your day, and the rest of the work is definitely worth a look. It was a very classy evening and I hope they continue to intersperse shows like these into their schedule in the future
FFDG opened up the group show featuring original works by the artists of the world famous Skull & Sword tattoo last Friday here in San Francisco. Thanks to the huge crowd who turned out to support these four incredibly talented artists. Here is a taste of the show, and be sure to swing in to view in person. The show runs through June 8th.
Gary Baseman's retrospective "The Door is Always Open" at the Skirball in LA opened recently to massive crowds in a huge celebratory opening party. The exhibition is so complex and personal, delving into Baseman's background, family history, and all the layers of prolific work that he has done over the years. After the opening festivities winded down, I caught up with Baseman for an interview. We discussed the underlying meaning to some of the components of the show and how it felt for him, coming from such an honest personal perspective in putting this massive show together.
Fertile Menace, a new show of Mark Mulroney's (NY) work opened at Ever Gold on May 4th and it's not one to be missed. It is intelligently hilarious, with jokes riffing off sex, Foucault, and the body, and while it makes you laugh it's also going to make you think.
Our buddies Jay Howell, Andreas Trolf, and Jim Dirschberger are hyped as their show, which they've been working on for like 2 years, premieres on Nickelodeon Saturday. From the trailers we've seen so far and from what Jay has told us about, the show is going to be pretty epic. Congrats to those radical fellas.
Following his solo exhibition "The Collected" at Gallery Wendi Norris, painter Amir H. Fallah is in the throes of developing more new works for upcoming international exhibits. We spent some time in his studio in Highland Park, Los Angeles recently, discussing his process and inspiration.
We were first introduced to the photography of Spanish born NYC based Bubi Canal when he emailed us his great video Trust in Me a couple years ago. His solo show Special Moment recently ran at NYC's Munch Gallery in February, and he recently released his newest video Chrystelle below.
Although I missed the opening of Northern-California photographer Michael Garlington's newest show, Constructed Realities, I was fortunate enough to see the work still up during the Metaphysical fundraiser a couple weeks back at 111 Minna. Metaphysical fundraiser, an auction to benefit Wayne Ernzer. --- The ghoulish photographs in their heavy, hand-made frames are reminiscent of photos from the old west, and the glass crucifixes, complete with fetuses and guns, emphasize the accumulated time within the works themselves. Whether you're looking at the frames, the photos, or both, this show deserves a visit, and a walk through the golden archway Garlington constructed around the front door.
Fecal Face contributor Rachel Ralph (rachel(at)fecalface.com) has been profiling this Oakland based painter as he travels about Japan. In this segment, we feature some photos as he prepared for this show and residency at Spes-LaB in Tokyo which opened last weekend. Arnold will be featured in SFMoMA's Minna Street windows on June 8th.
Last Saturday, here in SF's Mission district, Guerrero Gallery opened two new shows with Philly based Alex Lukas and SF based Richard Colman respectively. Colman's work occupied the project space while Lukas' work and foliage was presented in the main space. Worth getting to if you haven't already.
Just got back to SF after a little trip south to Sayulita, Mexico. After 10 years without a vacation, me and the Mrs. headed south for some mental time off sitting in the sun, swimming and enjoying the watery Mexican beer. Here are some photos as we get back into the swing of things again.
Athens, Greece based designer, architect and artist Dimitris Polychroniadis emailed over more of his work which consists of mixed media, pop-humorous diorama sculptures that make a comment on the harsh realities my country and much of the world is facing at the moment.
FFDG will open a group show with the artists from the famed Skull & Sword Tattoo on Friday, May 17th (6-9pm). Artists: Grime, Henry Lewis, Yutaro, and Lango. Below are a series of videos on Grime for Vice's Tattoo Age produced in 2011. Fascinating look at one of the greatest tattoo artists alive today.
ARYZ (Spain) opened his newest gallery show at Fifty24SF last Friday and, if you live in the Bay Area, you need to go. This dude can obviously paint, and he doesn't need an entire building to show his impecable skill. The show has lots of small works on paper which contrast his highly-defined line work to his hard-edged painted objects. The contrast between the hard and soft was the most striking thing to me about his work, since I had never seen it in person before, and the washes blend with the thick paint seamlessly. The show also contains a larger work on canvas, a huge head suspended in the back of the room, and a big wood sculpture of a wolf figure. This diversity in such a small space was impressive, and those of us that went to the opening even got to meet the man in person. If you didn't make it out this weekend, check it out before May 31st when it closes and these works will be off to some very happy new homes.
Water McBeer is please to announce its latest exhibition "Precious" a solo exhibition by David Bayus (April 6 - May 4, 2013) -- David Bayus born 1982 holds his BFA from the Savannah College of Art and his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. David lives and works in San Francisco and is a founding member of the basement collective. This will be his first exhibition with the world renown Water McBeer Gallery highlighting his most recent achievements with paint and digital media. David Bayus will be exhibiting 5 relatively large-scale mixed media works along with a collaborative object featuring Hungarian sculptor H.R KOONS.
The Shooting Gallery handed over the reins to the Red Truck Gallery (a New Orleans based gallery) which curated their new show, Hard Time Mini Mall and opened the it on Saturday night. This is my favorite show (so far) in the Shooting Gallery's new space and was packed full of art, a mini bar, and cowhide rugs. The Red Truck Gallery chose works with clear craftsmanship and it was easy to see in Ian Berry's denim assemblages and Chris Roberts-Antieau's awesome quilts. The space was completely packed, making it hard to see each piece individually, but this show deserves a second trip anyway. I look forward to spending more time with the chandeliers, automatons, and paintings before the show comes down on May 4th.
Toronto based photographer Nathan Cyprys emailed to let us know about his newest series "Neighbour State", and we were about to post it when we spotted this series on his site entitled "Ayre (of Distances)" and had to post this one instead. After you view this one, view "Neighbour State" on his site. Both are visually enjoyable.
Working from found photographs, Lyle's paintings are created through a reductive painting process where each piece is rendered using only black paint and turpentine. Lyle begins this process by priming a panel with white gesso. He then paints a thin, rich, oily black veneer over the primed panel, slowly and systematically developing his images by removing some of the black paint with a cloth. In doing so, Lyle renders layer upon layer of various values of black paint resulting in his signature-style of luminescent works.
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