Susan R. Kirshenbaum

art and life - both the cherries and the pits

Introducing My Aluminum Prints

Susan KirshenbaumComment

MAKING METAL PRINTS

I decided to try a new substrate for printing my art. Instead of printing on fine art paper mounted and behind glass or adhered to bamboo, I wanted to find a durable, light-weight, easy to hang (each piece has a gallery "mount"-a frame behind the art, creating space between the wall and the art), and it's easy to ship. It's a fresh, contemporary solution that suits my digitally created artwork. Working with the my trusted vendor, Scale Up in SF, I produced my first print on metal (dye-infused aluminum), called "Inside the Walls". Here's some background on how this particular piece developed:

"By combining a photo of an ancient temple in Burma with a life drawing, I'm melding time, place, and media. With irony, I'm placing a nude female in a sacred Buddhist context. She is escaping, contorting, and climbing out - emerging from a traditional society and suggesting we consider the oppressive impact of religion on the Rohingya minority in Burma." 
Inside the Walls is the piece that was selected by the juror for Discover, the January 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is an 18 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. ©2017srkirshenbaum

Inside the Walls is the piece that was selected by the juror for Discover, the January 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is an 18 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. ©2017srkirshenbaum

When I look at my work to determine which pieces might fit within an exhibition theme as a juror might see it, I reconsider my intentions and outcomes. What do I think is effective about this piece and how does it relate to the theme?

"Looking Over and In is about self-reflection and our relationship to the the world around us. How are we seen? What do we see? In our world of selfies we are now more than ever - self-observing and self-absorbed."
LOOKING OVER AND IN is one of two pieces that was selected by the juror for Eye of the Beholder, the February 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is a 16 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. ©2017srkirshenbaum

LOOKING OVER AND IN is one of two pieces that was selected by the juror for Eye of the Beholder, the February 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is a 16 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. ©2017srkirshenbaum

I go through my work to determine which pieces are most appropriate for an exhibition theme as seen through a juror's eyes.  I look for my work that is most relevant. Because I create all my art digitally, this helps me determine how I'll produce it as a finished piece ready to hang in a gallery. Currently I am exploring metal prints, which are archival, durable, light-weight, and easy to hang and ship.

"Of the Forest" is about my desire for people to interact and appreciate nature and feel a part of it. In my neighborhood, which is called a cloud forest (Forest Knolls), neighbors are clear-cutting their hillsides. I have tried to get through to them about how important it is to allow our landscape to thrive and not see nature as danger. I see our trees as our sustenance, but what one person sees as a treasure, another sees as a nuisance."
OF THE FOREST is one of two pieces that was selected by the juror for Eye of the Beholder, the February 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is a 16 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. © 2017srkirshenbaum

OF THE FOREST is one of two pieces that was selected by the juror for Eye of the Beholder, the February 2018 theme at SFWA. This work is a 16 x 24 inch dye-sublimation print on aluminum with gallery backing, produced by Scaleupart.com. Ed 1/1. © 2017srkirshenbaum

Why Choose Metal Prints?

Fade Resistant

ChromaLuxe Achieves Three Times the Print Display Permanence Rating Compared to Silver-Halide Color Papers.

Moisture Resistant

Our Metal Prints are resistant to moisture, making them the perfect choice for any environment.

Lightweight

Easy to transport, ship and hang.

Scratch and Abrasion Resistant

Chromaluxe Metal has incredible scratch and abrasion resistance, like no other print media.

Color Brilliance

Ink is infused directly into the aluminum sheet rendering a deep color brilliance and stunning vibrancy.

Easy to Clean

The chemical resistant aluminum surfaces can be cleaned with ammonia, bleach, acetone or any all-purpose cleaners.  This makes Metal Prints great for hospitality, healthcare and corporate display.

100% Recyclable

We only use aluminum backing for our metal prints so the finish product is 100% aluminum.

Fire Resistant

Our metal prints meet ASTM standards for flame spread and smoke development.

Info provided by Scaleupart.com

SF ART FAIRS – NOT MIAMI BUT OUR SPECIAL FLAVOR

Susan KirshenbaumComment

Fog Art & Design and Untitled were art fair highlights in SF this past weekend. What a dramatic departure from the experience we had at Miami Art Week (see my last blog post). Just being able to pop in for a couple of hours at my local shows was a real treat. Having one ticket for one price for multiple days of each show was something I enjoyed taking advantage of (although they required two tickets, one for each fair). I attended on a few different days and saw a couple of interesting art talks too. 

There were also special art events taking place simultaneously at the Minnesota Street Project and the new, local East Cut Art Fair with a handful of participating galleries: Chandra Cerrito Contemporary (Oakland), George Lawson Gallery  (San Francisco), Seager Gray Gallery (Mill Valley), and SLATE Contemporary (Oakland). I wanted to get to these shows (and parties!) too but I didn't make it. Do tell me what you thought if you got there!

Fort Mason is always such a beautiful venue. I love the light on the water. The new SFAI Graduate Art School that shares the Cowell Theatre Pier now is an exciting visual art addition here. 

Fort Mason is always such a beautiful venue. I love the light on the water. The new SFAI Graduate Art School that shares the Cowell Theatre Pier now is an exciting visual art addition here. 

Here are a few of my personal top-notes from Fog and Untitled:

PEOPLE

People watching was very good (for SF). The crowd at Fog appeared to be more buyers where the crowd at Untitled appeared to be more artists.

DISPLAY

Display, especially at Fog, was beautiful.

SHUTTLES & PARKING

Things are picking up here. There were shuttles to take you to various art events!  Free parking was easy to find, too.

COST

It’s still relatively expensive at $30 per ticket (just slightly less online). Tickets were good for multiple days but not multiple venues. Not much is free at Fog or Untitled except art and design  publications so we all loaded up on them.

VENUES

Beautiful! But for newbies, the venues needed more directional signage.

FOG VS UNTITLED

The work was funkier at Untitled, slicker at Fog as was the crowd. Compared to Art Basel and Miami Art Week, there was far less figurative work (my area of particular interest).

And at Fog, there's that strong emphasis on design – especially hand-crafted and vintage home furnishings. More than last year? Next time (always thinking about that) - I’d love to see more shows come to SF  to keep building our week out to a San Francisco Art Week! Let's bring in Form (sculpture and jewelry art), Design (separating design from art is not a bad thing), and the new all-women’s art fair: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/14/arts/design/an-all-woman-art-fair-during-art-basel-miami-beach.html?_r=

Speaking of women and art, the panel Women Rising (at Fog on Thursday), was quite strong and inspiring. Planning by YBCA in collaboration with SFMOMA for shows featuring living/working women artists include one of my personal mentors, Suzanne Lacy.

But the recent stats on numbers of women showing in galleries and institutions were disturbingly low and the Bay Area is as weak as the rest of the USA.

San Francisco's magical Palace of Fine Art - a fantastic art fair venue.

San Francisco's magical Palace of Fine Art - a fantastic art fair venue.

David Ireland performance art piece at Untitled.

David Ireland performance art piece at Untitled.

An inspiring talk by Theaster Gates, Artist as Social Activists, was followed by an uninspiring panel discussion based loosely on the same topic.

An inspiring talk by Theaster Gates, Artist as Social Activists, was followed by an uninspiring panel discussion based loosely on the same topic.

Untitled SF reflects a local fashion flavor twist.

Untitled SF reflects a local fashion flavor twist.

Untitled SF reflects a local art fashion sensibility.

Untitled SF reflects a local art fashion sensibility.

By Chiharu Shiota, these ghostly large photographic images reach into gauzy floating panels from both sides at Untitled.

By Chiharu Shiota, these ghostly large photographic images reach into gauzy floating panels from both sides at Untitled.

The video portion of this gallery-wide installation. All pieces are for sale individually. At Untitled in the Zilberman Gallery (Istanbul and Berlin) work by Burcak Bingol.

The video portion of this gallery-wide installation. All pieces are for sale individually. At Untitled in the Zilberman Gallery (Istanbul and Berlin) work by Burcak Bingol.

A thick layered ceramic chunk is part of the installation.

A thick layered ceramic chunk is part of the installation.

Individual elements are all related to the theme.

Individual elements are all related to the theme.

 Don't miss THIS art SHOW

PARADISE LOST

An invitational group figure show

Back to the Picture, Valencia Street

But even if you missed the opening you can still see the show! It continues through the closing party (which will be another good one!) on

Feb. 24!

 

 

 

 

 

These are gem-like underwater-looking ceramic sculptures at Fog.

These are gem-like underwater-looking ceramic sculptures at Fog.

Here's a fun Fog booth filled with over-sized ceramic objects from another era.

Here's a fun Fog booth filled with over-sized ceramic objects from another era.

Such creepy elegance in this glass snake candelabra. At Fog.

Such creepy elegance in this glass snake candelabra. At Fog.

I saw these at Fog - I simply love these darkly humorous candle holder sculptures!

I saw these at Fog - I simply love these darkly humorous candle holder sculptures!

This Fog booth had a master collection of ceramics and furniture, plus someone I observed who knew just what they were doing when it comes to arranging objects in the most elegant way. 

This Fog booth had a master collection of ceramics and furniture, plus someone I observed who knew just what they were doing when it comes to arranging objects in the most elegant way. 

Ceramics and steel with a fantastic reflection. Each of these pieces was simply luscious. At Fog.

Ceramics and steel with a fantastic reflection. Each of these pieces was simply luscious. At Fog.

I know I was attracted this day to circles and pink. This piece feels just right to me. At Fog.

I know I was attracted this day to circles and pink. This piece feels just right to me. At Fog.

A painted pink dot wall makes for a delightful background for these perfect prints at Fog.

A painted pink dot wall makes for a delightful background for these perfect prints at Fog.

Here I am in pink, in the Starn bamboo furniture gallery show with a delightful gallerist at Fog Art & Design 2018.

Here I am in pink, in the Starn bamboo furniture gallery show with a delightful gallerist at Fog Art & Design 2018.

At Fog you could see this huge and sumptuous diptych which is marbleized and "spread" onto canvas.

At Fog you could see this huge and sumptuous diptych which is marbleized and "spread" onto canvas.

Geoffrey Pugen's work, called Wellness III, was shown at Untitled. There were several in this series that appealed to me - although I saw a great many collages - this monoprint technique is rougher and more painterly, yet digitally printed. 

Geoffrey Pugen's work, called Wellness III, was shown at Untitled. There were several in this series that appealed to me - although I saw a great many collages - this monoprint technique is rougher and more painterly, yet digitally printed. 

Seen at Untitled, this painting is composed of cut and scratched paint and canvas.

Seen at Untitled, this painting is composed of cut and scratched paint and canvas.

I enjoyed this painting (at Untitled) which is hard-edged perfectly wed with elements of light and softness. By Michael Boyd, Bijou, 1970, Eric Firestone Gallery.

I enjoyed this painting (at Untitled) which is hard-edged perfectly wed with elements of light and softness. By Michael Boyd, Bijou, 1970, Eric Firestone Gallery.

ART BASEL MIAMI - INITIAL THOUGHTS

Susan KirshenbaumComment
Weaving combined with a variety of other techniques.

Weaving combined with a variety of other techniques.

MIAMI MARATHON

So excited to share my first Art Basel experiences! But, as predicted by experienced Art Basel aficionados, I’ve been sick in bed with a cold for a week. Not a surprise after the literal art marathon in Miami last week. But I’m still considering returning next year, and possibly for years to come. We have nothing to compare (so vast and grand) in San Francisco. So for me and for you, I’m writing up some tit bits of what I learned and observed, some trends that I noticed, and a few side comments about the people, food and drink.

This summary should help put a trip together for next year, even though there are always changes. I’m hoping to draw in my friends and family, as well as gallerists, curators, jurors, artists, collectors, and fun-seekers who attended, to share their experiences and insights here too.

The fairs are a marathon because there are so many (23+), and there's so much traffic to navigate. One wants to do and see as much as one can, so it’s hard not to over-fill the days and nights. Traveling with a pack (ranging from 3-10), with a van and a driver on some days, helped to keep us on a schedule.

Colorful couple in the center reminded me of the 80s.

Colorful couple in the center reminded me of the 80s.

People wear their artwear, and just about everything else too.

People wear their artwear, and just about everything else too.

What not to do

Wear uncomfortable clothes and shoes. Most likely will be wearing the same thing day and night (unless you can figure out a midway R&R stop). The floors are mostly concrete. There are very few chairs or rest and recharge areas. Don’t waste your money on fair-bought champagne and water. The temperature varies wildly – it’s quite warm but it gets chilly when it rains. So you can pack light but bring weather gear. Don’t rent a car, get sunburned, drink too much alcohol. If you can afford it, a driver and vehicle is a great addition.

What to do

Fly direct. Take a flight into/out of either Miami OR Ft. Lauderdale. Pack light. Stay somewhere central or at least close to some shows. Prepare in advance. Try to be well rested to begin with. Study up on the different fairs and galleries. Have a schedule in mind. Don’t try to coordinate with too many people. Follow a plan but remain flexible. Spend most of your time with the art...don't get too sidetracked into parties and beach scenes. Study a map and plan your time accordingly. Take Uber, Lyft, taxis, etc. Wear a small-ish light-weight backpack that converts to a shoulder bag. Collect invitations to VIP events and areas. Take advantage of their lounges.

WHAT TO Bring

Business cards, phone chargers, rain gear, a bathing suit, a notepad and pen (take notes), artwear, a change of comfortable shoes, and layers. Bring and drink water. Eat breakfast. Stop to eat a quick lunch and dinner. Bring snacks like nuts and bars. Eat “on the Beach” and get a real Cuban meal. Also Miami pizza is very good and so is the coffee.

Our art posse stops to figure out next moves during the last night - at the Wynwood Art Walk.

Our art posse stops to figure out next moves during the last night - at the Wynwood Art Walk.

Don’t miss

Design Basel (has a separate fee).

Form

One full day, on either a Thursday or Friday, at Art Basel

Wynwood Art Walk at night

PULSE

ArtMiami

Scope

INK

ICA

Rubell Collection

The Rubell Collection always proves alarming. Work by Frank Benson, 2011.

The Rubell Collection always proves alarming. Work by Frank Benson, 2011.

Faena (the gorgeous hotel) is worth a visit to see the golden mastodon.

Faena (the gorgeous hotel) is worth a visit to see the golden mastodon.

Brunches and parties

We had a great time at Casa Lin's brunch but missed all the others. They are worth going to for a chance to meet people and talk, relax, and fuel up.

"You are what you eat" is a piece of student performance art in the Casa Lin garden.

"You are what you eat" is a piece of student performance art in the Casa Lin garden.

I think I could have missed Aqua and NADA. Read details: https://news.artnet.com/market/art-basel-miami-beach-guide-1032611 

Materials, techniques, topics and display trends

We (my little art posse) saw lots of variations of layers and reflections, on clear acrylic, Mylar, Lucite, etc. Another popular shiny substrate we saw lots of is Resin. Techniques from fiberarts were very popular, including weaving, knitting, crochet, and embroidery. Plus we noted lots of stitched canvases and patterned fabric used as a canvas. Some used buttons or bones or beads - traditional materials identified with women's work.

Wax was used in these book art pieces by Jessica Drenk, 2017, Galleri Urbane Dallas.

Wax was used in these book art pieces by Jessica Drenk, 2017, Galleri Urbane Dallas.

Figurative - Deconstructed

I look for figurative work as that's what I do and I want to see what's out there. I like these surreal figurative works by Dario Maglionico.

I look for figurative work as that's what I do and I want to see what's out there. I like these surreal figurative works by Dario Maglionico.

Elaborate 100% embroidered artwork.

Elaborate 100% embroidered artwork.

Woven mens' belts appear very heavy and solid.

Woven mens' belts appear very heavy and solid.

Weaving all types of materials was a big theme this year. This is an example of an unusual material woven together to great effect. I noticed people using raw linen now, too. And there were a number of pieces made with delicately etched and scratched metal.

Graphite sculpture

This artist had quite a few pieces in quite a few shows. Each is mundane subject matter and perfectly rendered in life-size.  605 E. 132nd St., Bronx, by Adam McEwen, 2016, The Modern Institute

This artist had quite a few pieces in quite a few shows. Each is mundane subject matter and perfectly rendered in life-size.  605 E. 132nd St., Bronx, by Adam McEwen, 2016, The Modern Institute

Paintings were often on fabric used as a paint surface, including heavily patterned fabric. Many pieces were presented as a series or an installation with sculpture and other artforms. It was not uncommon to see multiple panels making up a single work. There were also lots of shaped canvases, especially round ones. Super-realism lives on. So does pretty - with birds, butterflies, flowers, fairies, patterns, and luscious colors. People like to interact with the art. So many selfies and photo ops for eachother. With the kinetic pieces you could play around. With the reflective pieces you could catch sight of yourself.

IMG_3897.JPG
A large circle composed of used clothes tightly packed together. By Manish Nai, Kavi Gupta Gallery.

A large circle composed of used clothes tightly packed together. By Manish Nai, Kavi Gupta Gallery.

Fabric and clothing have become an art material. Wallpaper has become an extension of the art for sale.

Beautiful and fun, yes? Works by Jason DeMarte, shown by Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM.

Beautiful and fun, yes? Works by Jason DeMarte, shown by Richard Levy Gallery, Albuquerque, NM.

Quilting has reached a complex art form. This was a very popular series.

Personal story-telling combined with old world quilting taken to new heights. Family by Bisa Butler.

Personal story-telling combined with old world quilting taken to new heights. Family by Bisa Butler.

Collage of every type, in tiny to grand scale. Old masters redux is always in. Layers and layers with shadow-play and reflections and along with optical illusions were a noticeable trend. 

Monofilament + acrylic paint are combined in this very handsome piece by Chris Dorosz, R.O.S.H. Series, 2017, Muriel Guepin Gallery.

Monofilament + acrylic paint are combined in this very handsome piece by Chris Dorosz, R.O.S.H. Series, 2017, Muriel Guepin Gallery.

3-D printing was used to create a wall of these small sculptures. When I saw them they were all being packed up since they'd just been purchased. Mister Nobody is by Igor Gusev, Voloshyn Gallery, Kyiv, Ukraine, 2017.

3-D printing was used to create a wall of these small sculptures. When I saw them they were all being packed up since they'd just been purchased. Mister Nobody is by Igor Gusev, Voloshyn Gallery, Kyiv, Ukraine, 2017.

Installation art and composed vignettes. Heavy patterns for backgrounds. So many grids. New uses for lint and felt. And it's glitzy Miami and Miami Beach, so of course so much silver and gold leaf. Performance art popping up here and there was a refreshing change.

Installation + performance art were the scene at this booth. Not an easy way to spend the four or so art fair days.

Installation + performance art were the scene at this booth. Not an easy way to spend the four or so art fair days.

Cut paper and books

This fantastic book is carved like rock with a portal entry.

This fantastic book is carved like rock with a portal entry.

A mosaic of sorts, made of ceramic chips with a subtle image in the center. More obvious in the photo than in life. By Park Sung Wook, 2017.

A mosaic of sorts, made of ceramic chips with a subtle image in the center. More obvious in the photo than in life. By Park Sung Wook, 2017.

Scenes from the graphic design world: letterpress, typography, signage-style words and messages. Words and statements. Not my favorite.

Scenes from the graphic design world: letterpress, typography, signage-style words and messages. Words and statements. Not my favorite.

What they wore (or didn’t) - Women

Lots of skin and major underwear showing; beachwear – diaphanous white; running/workout gear; ripped pants; white; sneakers or really high heels, and long and short together...

There's a letterpress studio set-up in the background and a concrete installation to the right of this pair.

There's a letterpress studio set-up in the background and a concrete installation to the right of this pair.

More scenes from the graphic design world: PMS colors and large digital duotones and and monotones.

More scenes from the graphic design world: PMS colors and large digital duotones and and monotones.

More trends: monochrome as a theme, manipulated photos, video inserted, deconstruction, burning and smoke as an art-making tool, concrete, sparkles, mirrors, hair, body parts, and hermaphrodites.

IMG_3650.jpg

Crumpled

In conte crayon on rag paper, Crushed Roses, 2017, by Josph Stashkevetch, Von Lintel Gallery, LA, CA.

In conte crayon on rag paper, Crushed Roses, 2017, by Josph Stashkevetch, Von Lintel Gallery, LA, CA.

And the trends continue: being black, black women and families, climate change, pretty, guns, breasts, penises, and mundane objects made of precious materials.

IMG_4118.jpg

 

Painted and graduated walls

Design Miami - this was a beautiful series of sets...

Design Miami - this was a beautiful series of sets...

What's next?

SF is trying! Note what's coming up January 11-14 - our own Fog Art and Design Fair, joined for the first time this year by Untitled-SF at Pier 70, All on the same dates SF Art Week? .  https://untitledartfairs.com/san-francisco/ and https://fogfair.com/

Want to dig deeper? Find out about women artists at Miami Art Week. https://hyperallergic.com/416340/timely-exciting-work-by-women-artists-at-miami-art-week/?