06 May 2012

May Update: 8 Artists

[This is our third update report, with news on eight of the twenty-eight artists whose work we've featured so far. Click on the artist heading to view their introductory article.]

Enzo Ferrari (2012)

Enzo Ferrari (detail)
Waneek Horn-Miller (2012)

Junior Seau and Canole (1995)
   Christopher Canole's latest two drawings exemplify everything we love about his work. His portrait of Waneek Horn-Miller (directly above) shows the water polo Olympic athlete with her trademark feather in her hair indicating her First Nations heritage, the maple leaf of her native Canada, and a turtle which calls to mind the tattoo on her ankle which represents her fondness for the animal that is central to the Mohawk creation narrative. Canole has long been a fan of passionate and socially-active athletes, and is currently a nominee in the 2012 Olympics "Show Your Best" competition. You might still be able to vote for him here
   When we asked him how his most recent drawing, of Enzo Ferrarri, the founder of Ferrarri sports car company, fits into his oeuvre, Canole responded with gentle laughter, "It fits because they're going to pay me!" He's referring, possibly ironically, to Ferrarri of San Diego, and their commission of a drawing of their late head honcho. It's probably the most perfectly-rendered portraits Canole has produced thus far. And, if you think about it, Ferrarri's creations do combine beauty, science and inspiring excellence. Plus, the P4 is his favorite Ferrari. About it he said, "It's all curves! The line under the door is the straightest line on the whole car, and I was tempted for a moment to even add a curve to that." It also include Canole's hand-drawn take on the new Italia Spyder.
   We got the chance to ask Canole about the photo of him (above right) with the recently-deceased Junior Seau, to which he responded: "He was one of the greatest sports-icons San Diego had. Gwynn, Fouts, Garvey. But Seau was just so welcoming, always with smile. So courteous and friendly, and so willing to give back to the community. Even compared with some of the others at his level of popularity, he was one of the most connected San Diegans. It was a big loss." Bringing it back to art, Canole said: "That's why when I see someone like that, who has that, I feel the need to share that quality with others through my drawings." Rest in peace, Junior.

Self-Portrait (2012)
Untitled (2012)

Words (2012)

   Meanwhile, Anna Zappoli continues producing paintings seemingly as quickly and effortlessly as smokers exhale carbon monoxide. But though Zappoli's creations may be as addictive, they fortunately have none of the harmful side-effects. Above left is an image of a recent self-portrait, and the bottom pic is of a series of mixed-media paintings that include text, which we strive to read through the smears. Some of the words come across as excerpts of love letters, and others as stream-of-consciousness poems. We never get all the details, but we're still eager to see the full-flowering of this venture. 

Common Soul EP front cover (2012)

Common Soul Back Cover (2012)

   Above are the finished front and back covers of San Diego band Idlehands' Common Soul EP, with artwork by Jordan Josafat. Quite nice! Actually, it couldn't have turned out better, if you ask us.

Woman and Bird (etching, 2012)
Tree at Night
with some
etching, 2012)

Untitled mezzotint (2012)
Rest (etching, drypoint,
and engraving, 2012)

   Above are Gregory Bada's latest four intaglio prints. We find they each have that same dreamy sweetness, never a superfluous line or mark, always-leaving-us-hungry-for-more quality which first got us hooked on Bada's work.

The Burnout Triptych (2012)

   Huge turn for Mike Maxwell. Though he's been produced some astounding abstract backgrounds for his portraits for a long time, the above triptych features them taking the center-stage. The look is a subdued and neat one, but only compared to his portraits which spill right over the canvas. It must be mentioned how refreshing it is to see spray-paint used so finely. This focus on abstraction might represent be a one-shot deal, or possibly a dipping of his toe before a killer plunge. We'll just have to wait and see, but what is certain is that Maxwell remains an artist that refuses to be pinned down.

Happy Poster (2012)

L'equipe or The Team (2012)

   The above two posters were silk-screened by Kaizen Collective for the awesome French record "Je te prends" by Alex Rossi. The final poster chosen was featured in a previous post, but these two alternates  can stand on their own merits of joy, humor, a touch of nostalgia, and, in L'equipe, even a little social unrest.

Linked (acrylic on panel, 2012)

   The above painting by Kelly Vivanco, created for a Culver City show, incorporates her winning streak of pieces focusing on two girls. This latest one, however, adds extra intrigue with its inclusion of two ghost girls, and a background that simultaneously communicates an underground hideaway, an underwater hideaway, and an other-worldly meditative glory. It's a mix of eeriness, comfort, and beauty that only Vivanco can bring, and her recipe seems to be deepening and widening. Have mercy, Kelly!

The Heir
(charcoal and pastel on paper, 2011)

   The new issue of American Artist Drawing magazine includes a feature article on our very own Aron Wiesenfeld. The above image is a drawing of his which we've included as a salute to next week's holiday: Mother's Day. 

[And that wraps it up for this update report. Our conclusion is that San Diego is as respectful, experimental, dreamy, poetic, and productive as ever. See you in six days. And remember: you don't have to be a visual artist to live artfully!]

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