Tuesday, November 30, 2010


I don't know if you realize this, but the deadline to apply for a studio at AAC is fast approaching--it's this FRIDAY, Dec. 3. Anne Collins Goodyear from the NPG is helping us review applications for a whole bunch of studios on the top floor of our lovely Wilson Boulevard building--all spacious, clean, and convenient to metro.

Download your application form

The rundown:

Studios range from 300 square feet for a solo studio to 600 square feet for a shared, 4-artist space. All have excellent sunlight, work sinks, and high ceilings with 365 day, 24-hour access. There is a lounge area, kitchen, and a shower. Artists are not required to keep studio doors open; instead, they open their studios to the public 5 times each year, typically in conjunction with opening receptions. Every artist has a regular opportunity to exhibit in AAC’s Wyatt Resident Artist Gallery. A page on AAC’s website is devoted to each artist.

So that's 24 hour access...a communal shower, kitchen, and lounge...opportunities to show in exhibitions in the building, and during open studio events, usually held in conjunction with art openings during which a few hundred people are milling around in the building anyway...and a page on our website.

Increasingly, resident artists are the public face of AAC--we've been featuring our residents in offsite public art programs in Arlington this past year, with more in the hopper for 2011. Heck, there's always an outside chance we might even take you
someplace cool--as we did with residents Evan Reed and Caroline Danforth in this 2007 show.

Bonus: You get to see me whenever you want to. Who doesn't want that?

Apply, already!

Pictured: Resident artist Jenny Mullins during a January open studio event at AAC.

Monday, November 29, 2010

my secret comics past

Okay, so at some point I probably should've mentioned that I used to draw comics.

Mind you, it was all during my student years--didn't we all experiment in college?

See samples below from SIGURD, a comic strip that inexplicably ran in two different newspapers, one at UVa, one at VA Tech, from 1992 to 1993. The first strip comes from the fall of '92; the second from the spring of '93. By then, the drawing had marginally improved, but the funny, such as it was, had evaporated, I think.

I should also probably mention that I had a number of drawing and painting instructors--during my undergrad years, and later, while I was taking classes at the Corc prior to grad school--tell me to steer clear of comics because they would poison my ability to do any real seeing/rendering.

And while I understand why they were saying what they were saying...the notion that contemporary painters need to stay away from popular culture, pictorial conventions, and mass-reproduced imagery should strike anyone reading this as pretty seriously out-of-touch, and not remotely market or reality-based.

And now, snippets of my misspent youth:

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I forgot to mention: I had this short and sweet review of The Pre-Raphaelite Lens show over at the NGA in last week's WCP. Read about Johnny Ruskin, daguerreotypes, and costumed tomfoolery here.
Pictured: Julia Margaret Cameron, The Sunflower, 1866-1870, albumen print

crash(er) worship

PARTY CRASHERS is finally open at AAC. Yeah, I know, you were at the opening, anyway (because you're not lame), and therefore I don't really have to tell you this. But it is, and you should come see it.

Read Mike Rhode's promo for the show on the WCP Arts Desk here. See more info on the AAC website here.

An interesting wrinkle: C'ville artist Warren Craghead, who's one of the ABSTRACT COMICS anthology artists featured in the show, has produced a little DIY book specifically for the exhibition--the pdf is available for you to download, print, and assemble on his website here.

There's a fabulous catalog available in conjunction with the show with illustrations by Blaise Larmee and an essay by Andrei Molotiu--and me, and Cynthia, and lots of pretty pictures from the artists. At some point we'll have it on the website, too, I'm sure.

Okay, so if you missed the reception last Friday I don't really think you're lame...but if you also miss the big joint super-duper blowout party Cynthia and I are throwing on December 11--there will be a bus traveling between AAC and Artisphere, believe it or don't--then the charge of lameness will stick like stink.

On a very tangential note: Claire, my beloved Executive Director, made some disparaging comments about Archie comics in her introduction to the PARTY CRASHERS catalog--I believe "cheap" and "treacly" were the words she used.

Well, Andrei Molotiu, being the consummate comic nerd--er, scholar--begs to differ. He sings the praises of Dan DeCarlo, and submits for your consideration this truly far-out issue of Josie and the Pussycats from September of 1968: Sock It to Who?..(Whom?)

I guarantee that it will not give you the whim-whams.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

freak scene

Thanks to everyone who came to the Katzen on Tuesday night!

Special thanks to Kristina Bilonick and Lisa Gold for thinking that rock mayhem at a VIP fundraiser with a fair percentage of genteel older arts patrons would somehow be a good idea. (It was, of course!)

Read Jonathan at WCP talking us up here and here; read the lyrics for Kathryn's Let's Go Out to Art Tonight as told to Maura at TBD here.

Below: Video captured by Philippa. Note that drum machines don't really care if you miss a cue or add a measure in the middle of a song; they tend to merrily chirp and thump away, heedless of your meanderings. Good thing we're so charming and attractive or someone might've actually noticed our missteps.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

we will be rocking you

Tonight the Katzen is the place to be for the VIP reception of Jim Mahoney's uber-DC show, CATALYST.

Why, you ask? Because Kathryn Cornelius and I will be mightily bringing the beats to all of the museum folk.

Tickets are $15.

No, wait, that's not right--tickets are actually $150. $75 for WPA members.

That doesn't make a difference, does it? Hey, maybe you could pose as catering staff or a bartender or something and sneak in...or go over there now and hide in a bathroom until 8:00, when I believe we will take to the stage and begin melting people's minds.

Above: Photo by Max Cook. Mural by Kathleen Shafer. Real artists don't need pants.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

read something else

I'm currently gearing up for PARTY CRASHERS at AAC. The show opens November 19.

Comic books! I am letting my geek flag fly. Read all about it on our

Over at
Grammar.police: Every time a few months have passed and I think Kriston is about ready to break up with the blogosphere, he puts up a flurry of five or six thoughtful posts. What a tease! Inexplicably, Kriston tries to persuade us that there was at some point a reason to read The New Criterion. There was? Kriston, I still like painting, too, but this doesn't make me feel any kinship with these rubes.

At the
WCP, John Anderson reflects on the Real Art D.C. "contest" at the WaPo. John finds plenty of flaws: from the glut of all-over-the-map entries from hobbyists and traditionalists in what was ostensibly a contemporary art contest...to the inclusion of reasonably well known locals in a contest intended for unknowns...to anyone's ability to actually give all of the over 4000 entries screen time and come to a meaningful conclusion about them.

Conclusions: Give the WaPo credit for actually doing something re: local artists. Deduct points for the failure to articulate meaningful standards, parameters, or definitions for contemporary art practice, or the relationship of our regional art identity (such as it is) to the rest of the art world--thereby reinforcing the we're-all-happy-under-the-radar-and-congratulating-one-another provincialism.

Things to see: I'm writing for the WCP right now about the
Pre-Raphaelite Lens show. NGA has had some pretty strong photography exhibitions in the past few years--like this one, for example.

Anne Goodyear is talking TONIGHT with curator Jonathan Walz and artist Heyd Fontenot about The Very Queer Portraits of Heyd Fontenot at the
UMD art gallery. Anne is awesome, as is Jonathan. And I don't just say this because I'm facebook friends with them.

Have $150 burning a hole in your pocket? Does your social calendar look empty for
next Tuesday night? And do you want to see the most rockingest top secret performance art piece ever, period, in the heretofore written history of awesomeness, that might or might not have something to do with Kathryn Cornelius and myself?

Well, I'd tell you something about all of this, but
it's a secret.