Monday, December 28, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For January 2010

Form/Space Atelier Program For January 2010

Show Title: The Water Poet

Show Duration: January 8-February 7, 2009

Opening Reception: January 8, 6PM, as part of the Belltown ArtWalk

John Monson exhibits new acrylic on canvas abstract seascapes and other imagery at Form/Space Atelier. This exhibit marks Monson’s first solo show at Form/Space Atelier and his second exhibit overall with the gallery. John keeps a garret–looking studio overlooking a wooded knoll in bucolic yet picturesque Fall City, where he also works out inventions, owning several patents. The title of the show refers to another John, English poet John Taylor (1580-1654), who assumed the sobriquet "The Water Poet" because Taylor for a long time was a waterman on the Thames. John Monson's visual poems of water reference the title. About his own work, Monson says; “I received my BFA from Western Washington University. Awards include top honors in ten juried art competitions. I draw heavily upon natural, organic forms, and move easily between realism and abstraction. I like to establish a dialog between carefully worked realism and impulsive, organic forms. This broad and inclusive integration of diverse styles reveals my belief that art plays a role in creating our worldview. Hopefully my work reflects a view that is not exclusive and fragmented, but rather more complete, more tolerant and integrating.”

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Sam Birchman Exhibits At Form/Space Atelier December 11- January 3, 2010

Sam Birchman exhibits oil on canvas paintings, well-drafted, with figuration and other imagery. This is the fourth exhibit of Sam Birchman’s work curated by Paul Pauper, dating back to 2007. Sam Birchman returned to Seattle after spending months in New York City recently. About his own work, Sam says “I live and work in downtown Seattle. I received my BFA in Studio Painting from the Evergreen State College in 2004. I am mainly interested in faces and figures. I find that I need to have a living being in my paintings in order for them to feel complete, whether it be a human, an animal, or just a suggestion of one or the other. I prefer my spaces to be somewhat undefined. The setting is less important to me than the interaction between the figures on the canvas. The process of painting itself is what I truly enjoy, from stretching and priming the canvas to applying paint and seeing what happens and how I respond to it.” Sam keeps a studio in the Vain Hair Salon Building, along with Form/Space Atelier-exhibited artist Michael Lane and others. Sam’s father is artist Fred Birchman, represented by Francine Seders.
October–November 2009
Wright Exhibition Space (Group Show), Seattle, WA
May 2009
Café Verite, Seattle, WA
March 2008
26 Brix, Seattle, WA
December 2007
Angle Gallery, Seattle, WA
July 2007
Form/Space Atelier, Seattle, WA
June 2007
Form/Space Atelier (Group Show), Seattle, WA
January 2007
Caffeine Café, Seattle, WA
July 2006
JAS Cabinet Shop, Seattle, WA
April 2005
Le Voyeur (Group Show), Olympia, WA
May 2004
The Evergreen State College Gallery 4 (Senior Thesis), Olympia, WA

Juliette Fretté Exhibits At Form/Space Atelier March 13-April 4, 2010

Juliette Fretté exhibits her original paintings March 13-April 4, 2010 at Form/Space Atelier, 2407 1st Avenue, Seattle. Vernissage for the exhibit is March 13, 8PM.
The organizing principles for this exhibit originate with exhibit Curator Paul Pauper, founder and Director of Form/Space Atelier. Pauper's prime organizing principle embraces the idea of curating artists first, and the the marks artists make secondarily. As this precept applies to the upcoming exhibit of Juliette Fretté's paintings, Pauper began thinking in terms of an exhibit by a feminist artist timed to coincide with International Women's Day March 8th. His research into artists defining themselves as feminists led him to data about Juliette Fretté. As more was revealed during the initial inquiry, it became evident that Juliette Fretté would be the only artist capable of fulfilling the entire vision being espoused by Pauper for an exhibit by a feminist artist. Additionally, Pauper's curation has been associated indivisibly with artists who use figuration, found in imagery of the paintings of Juliette Fretté, and in other aspects, notably Fretté's career as a model, as it applies to the curation scheme of this exhibit.
As research deepened and broadened, Pauper established contact with Juliette Fretté, and Fretté became an equal partner in the process of building the finalized organizing principles for the March 2010 exhibit. Specifically, Pauper and Fretté established the number of Fretté's art objects that could be most effectively exhibited, details regarding exhibit systems, framing the artwork, the potential for Fretté to create artwork in situ while in Seattle (Fretté is currently based in California), and moving the artwork and packaging and promotion of the exhibit. Artist and Curator made every effort to nurture a synergistic approach to building the exhibit.
As the organizing principles were established, Fretté and Pauper began to think in terms of establishing a narrative to support the exhibit. Pauper interviewed Fretté, included below. Additional corollary narrative is being written and will be available by the time of the exhibit March 2010, packaged together with archival materials such as previous interviews and the artist's parallel narratives regarding her artwork.

Pauper: What inspires your paintings?

Fretté: I find that the painting 'itch' often gets me going in terms of creating a new piece. In terms of what inspires me, I would say that certain events in my life can definitely influence the images that materialize. As every painting is entirely improvised, the end result is always a surprise. Otherwise, I would say that my work has spiritual and otherworldly muses :)

Pauper: What does painting make you feel?

Fretté: Painting forces me live in the moment unlike anything else. I find that painting is actually an addiction for me -- once I begin a new piece, it usually demands my attention until every detail is fully expressed.

Pauper: Who do you respect as an artist?

Fretté: I love the work of several artists. Growing up, my favorite artist was Ora Tamir, whose work is spiritual, passionate, and surreal. But my taste is relatively broad and I also enjoy the work of the celebrated pinup artist Olivia de Berardinas.

Pauper: Have Any Heroes in General?

Fretté: Heroes? Well, there are a lot of people that I respect, including every inspirational figure from Oprah to J.K. Rowling to Da Vinci to Barack Obama (and maybe Buffy the Vampire Slayer).

Pauper: Can You Think of Any People Who Need Cultural Enlightenment?

Fretté: Everybody! We all need to constantly immerse and enrich ourselves with culture, innovation, creativity, and progress.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Supports The Punk Rock Flea Market Which Supports The Low Income Housing Institute

Paul Pauper, Dickensian Carny Barker and Curator, Form/Space Atelier

Sunday, November 29, 2009

New Work By Sam Birchman

Seattle's Best Painter Exhibits at Form/Space Atelier December 11, 2009- January3, 2010. Vernissage December 11, 6PM as part of the Belltown Artwalk; . Second Friday!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Vladmaster Installation

Photos Dan Hawkins All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For November 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For November 2009

Show Title: Actaeon At Home

Show Duration: November 13- December 6, 2009

Opening Reception Friday November 13, 6PM, as part
of the Belltown ArtWalk

Experimental Filmmaker Vladimir exhibits her 5th interactive film experience
Actaeon At Home. Vladmasters are handmade View-Master™ reels designed,
photographed, and hand-assembled by Vladimir. They make use of toys, neglected
household objects, and odd ephemera to tell 28-picture tales of train chases,
missing steam shovels, disastrous dinner parties, and overly adventurous

Actaeon, to the ancient Greeks, was a hunter unlucky enough to get a good look
at Artemis bathing naked amongst her nymphs. For his trespasses, Actaeon was
transformed into a stag and then devoured by his own hounds. Our Actaeon, may
or may not have anything to do with the historical Actaeon. He is a small man
in a room with striped wallpaper and antlers and a typewriter and a collection
of Currier & Ives prints. Oh, also there is a train chase.

This new Vladmaster is narrationless. Instead of talk there is the Apt
Ensemble, a trio of musicians who lead you through the Vladmaster story
playing a variety of instruments and providing the odd sound effect. Listen
carefully and you will hear everything from a pump organ to a tuba to a
musical saw to a train whistle. This is also the first Vladmaster set
photographed entirely in glorious black and white.

This Vladmaster was made to debut in a live performance with the band and
emcee Tim Nickodemus for the 2005 PDX Fest Invitationals where Vladimir was,
with some tongue in cheek, crowned the World Champion of Experimental Film.

This set consists of four handmade Vladmaster reels, the box to keep them in,
and the mini-cd soundtrack. The music was written by Peter Broderick and
Nathan Crockett; performed by the Apt Ensemble (Peter Broderick, Nathan
Crockett, and Branic Howard) and recorded by Peter Broderick. Tim Nickodemus
introduces the CD. Douglas Jenkins is the human star of the photographs. The
story was written and photographed by Vladimir who also designed the reels and

Interview by Ross Simioni
Illustration by Tony Millionaire


Inspirations for Vladmasters:
Gertie the Dinosaur
EarlyFritz the Cat

The artist who goes by the name Vladimir is one of the only known filmmakers
working with View-masters, which, if you remember, are those cheap-looking toy
binoculars usually filled with images of zoo animals or dinosaurs. Instead of
watching her so-called films on movie screens, audience members hold
"stereoscopic viewing devices" up to their eyes and click through picture
reels of dioramas, action figures, and abstract photographs of trains. She
calls them Vladmasters.

Through her website, Vladimir mails her handmade films around the world, each
one accompanied by a spoken-narration CD and sound track. Her "picture
stories" have included adaptations of Calvino and Kafka, along with some of
her own writing, like the one about the pseudo-mystical congregation of
farming machinery. She claims to "seek out the forgotten, the discarded, and
the overlooked objects of this world...and [takes] tiny, tiny photographs in
order to tell their stories."

Since 2003, she's become and anomalous staple in the independent film festival
circuit, winning the World Champion of Experimental Film title on multiple
occasions. She remains active in her hometown of Portland, Oregon (also the
home of the View-Master), where she works as a projectionist, creates her own
scretch-it Vladlast lottery tickets, builds Super 8 film experiments, and
works as a quality assurance engineer at a software company.

This interview took place over email, with Vladimir responding from both
Portland and Brisbane, Australia, where she was participating in the Other
Film Festival. —Ross Simioni


THE BELIEVER: When you set up a performance — or is it better to call it a
screening? — what happens, exactly?

VLADIMIR: Sometimes I compare my performances to synchronized swimming. At a
performance, everyone in attendance is given a viewer and a set of my handmade
disks. There is a brief instructional introduction, and then we begin the
sound track, which leads everyone through a tiny private screening experience
just past the end of their nose. There are ding noises on the sound track to
cue the turning from one image to the next. Sometimes there is a narrator and
sometimes there's just music. Perhaps the most exciting moment is
participating in the ker-think of tens or hundreds of View-Masters turning
simultaneously after that very first ding.

BLVR: Would you say that’s the ideal scenario for someone to experience the
vladmaster? In a theater, like most films? I just received the vladmasters you
sent me in the mail, watched them all in my living room all day, and really
enjoyed the private storytelling feeling. It felt almost like reading.

V: I like both the theater and the personal experience. The great thing about
the theater is that there is a sort of euphoria and excitement that comes from
the experience of just being in a crowd of people who are all holding
View-Masters and all experiencing this sort of simultaneous media for the
first time. The crowd experience is really wonderful, but I think that the
more personal private experience that you had in your living room is probably
more conducive to reflection and paying attention to the story. Perhaps you
could call one a roller coaster and one a scenic drive?

BLVR: A little while ago, I heard David Lynch talking about his appreciation
of the laptop computer, how it has completely transformed cinema by
encouraging people to watch films alone, more like the intimacy of books. It
also encourages people to use headphones, which brings a renewed appreciation
to the way sound and music function in a film.

V: I really like this idea. The intimacy of the viewmaster viewing experience
is very important to me. I’m a projectionist and one of the wonderful things
about projecting movies is that you get to hold every part of them in your
hand. You get to see the film as an object and to see the individual frames. I
think the View-Masters present a similar experience: you can view them
narratively, as time-based, alongside the soundtrack, but you can also hold
them in your hand, see their individual parts, and appreciate them as craft

BLVR: That reminds me of how Stan Brakhage painted directly on his film. When
I first realized what he was doing, my idea of film was suddenly transformed
from an abstract thing, with images floating in the air, to the idea of actual
physical film stock. He broke that “fourth-wall” of physicality.

V: I’m sad to say I haven’t seen very much Stan Brakhage, but I was fortunate
to see two nights of films by his close friend and collaborator Phil Solomon
when he visited Portland. He treats the surfaces of his films chemically so
that you see the surface layers buckling and peeling. The original images
decay and fray and become submerged beneath the layered surface so that his
films are filled with a sense of beauty and loss. There is also a Bay Area
collective called SILT who often work with the decay of the film image by
leaving their films in holes in the ground to get moldy and be eaten by
creatures. I saw a wonderful 8mm film they hand-fed through a broken
projector, sometimes holding it too long in front of the lamp so that you
could see the image start to melt.

Perhaps at the other end of the film-as-object spectrum, there are Bruce
McClure’s films. He strips film down to its most basic elements: light and
dark. He does multi-projector performances in which each projector is running
an identical film loop that consists of several black frames followed by a
single clear frame. He uses dimmers, the focus on the projectors, and
occasionally gels or different shaped gates to manipulate the stroboscopic
shapes created by the film. The sound for his performances is generated by
passing the sound of the frames running through the projector through various
pedals to create a rhythmic pulse that matches the pulse of the visuals. They
are without doubt the most physiologically affecting films I’ve ever

BLVR: The concept of viewing a film has always been so removed from the idea
of performance, but with your work and, say, McClure's, there's that element
of it's-happening-right-now — something you don't get with pre-recorded films.
Do you think this connection with film comes from your work as a
projectionist, where you're sort of "performing" the film?

V: When you’re a movie projectionist, the goal is actually one of
self-abnegation. A good projectionist is an unnoticed projectionist. This is
perfect for me because I’m always trying to make myself disappear. I’ve always
just used the word “performance” for lack of a better alternative with my own
shows. Most of the time during my shows, I’m looking awkwardly down at the
floor and waiting for the soundtrack to end. If anyone can be said to be doing
the performing, or the projecting, during my shows, it would be the individual
audience members.

The thing I’ve taken from projecting is just the intimacy with the medium.
Because we tend to show older prints, before we show a film, I pass every reel
through my gloved hand to check for damage. When you do this, you become
hyper-aware of the individual frames and of the process of these discrete
pieces becoming a fluid whole. It is exactly like calculus.

I think that there are many people who turn their films into performances and
also make the audience hyper-aware of film’s construction and mechanism. Bruce
McClure is certainly one of them. I’ve just been lucky to see three of his
performances in the space of a week and a half at the utterly amazing
OtherFilm Festival in Brisbane Australia. Almost every film there had a
performative element. The projectors were always in the same room as the
audience and mostly projected by the filmmakers.

I saw two wonderful multi-projector performances by the great Australian
filmmaker Dirk De Bruyn. He began each of his shows by shining a flashlight
around the raised arms and reels of the 16mm projectors. The shadows of the
reels would play around the audience as a sort of initiation into film via a
ritualistic invocation.

There was also a performance by Sally Golding and Joel Stern, two of the
organizers of the festival who also do performances under the name Abject
Leader. Joel does live soundtracks and Sally makes films. She’s a fellow
projectionist and also a film preservationist and her work is steeped in
experimentations with film substance and film history. The performance that
they did at the festival dealt with early cinema color techniques in which
consecutive frames of film would be shot behind red, green, and blue filters
onto black and white film and then projected back through those same filters
to create a full spectrum effect. Sally set up three projectors pointed
straight into the audience, one each with a red, green, and blue filter, and
then stood in the center of the room holding up a large picture frame filled
with tracing paper. She makes the audience stare into the glare of the
projector and then rescues us by physically interrupting the glare and locking
the three projections into a single image.

BLVR: One thing I've never been entirely clear about is the job of a
projectionist. What's the whole process there?

V: The average feature film comes in two very heavy metal cases each
containing three 20-minute reels about 18 inches in diameter. Probably 95
percent of theaters run these reels on what is called a platter system. This
means that they build all of the reels onto one big platter so the projector
pulls the film off of one level of the platter and spits it back out onto
another. The whole film runs through a single projector in a single pass with
no need for a projectionist other than to build the film and push the START

I’m lucky to work at a theater that doesn’t use platters. Instead we use two
projectors and do reel changeovers. Over the course of a film, the
projectionist switches back and forth between the projectors four or five
times. At the end of each reel of film there are two sets of cue marks,
approximately 8 seconds apart. When one reel is winding down, I stand at
attention next to the projector that is not running and keep a very careful
eye on the top right corner of the screen. When I see the first cue mark, I
start the second projector, which then has 8 seconds to get fully up to speed.
At eight seconds, I see the second cue mark and hit the CHANGEOVER button
which simultaneously closes the dowser on the first projector and opens the
dowser on the second. If my timing is off, or if I miss the cue marks, the
audience is treated to anything from a half second of black to a very
embarrassing six seconds of countdown leader.


BLVR: The Vladmasters have been in a ton of film festivals, and you actually
won the title of World Champion of Experimental Film a few times, which means,
by all standards, you are clearly a filmmaker. But at the same time, you're
not a filmmaker in the same way that pretty much everyone else is a filmmaker.

V: IN terms of the audience experience, which is of a visual and audio
narrative that takes place oer a pre-determined time line, I'm closer to
making films than anything else. I certainly feel comfortable beinga part of
film festivals. However, when I'm making things I don't think of them as
films, I think of them as stories. If I had my choice I think I'd go with the
very simple description "picture story."

BLVR: So then, if you had to place yourself in a lineage of directors,
filmmakers, or picture-story makers, where would you be? On your website it
says that you enjoy "the very early films of Rene Clair."

V: Although I love film, I don't often think in terms of cinematic models when
I'm working on a project. I get more caught up in the very strict parameters
(twenty-eight photographs over four disks) of the View-Master and I
concentrate on working things into that tight little structure. One of the
great delights in working with the form is in the moment of anticipation, in
the narrative disjunction, that comes in the jump from one frame to the next.
To me this jump feels more akin to turning a page in a storybook than to
smoother flow of a film narrative.

The one time I did look to cinematic models was working on Actaeon at Home. I
knew that that would be a show with live music and no narrator, so I was
trying to create a purely visual logic for the jumps from frame to frame. I
was inspired by early animation. Looking at something like Gertie the Dinosaur
or early Fritz the Cat cartoons you get a sense of these early animators' joy
in discovering the infinite malleable possibilities of lines in motion. There
is a glorious anarchic logic and infinitely transformative quality to those
worlds that I tried to capture, in stiffer form, in Actaeon.

BLVR: Another thing I want to ask you about is Portland, which, per capita,
seems like one of the most artistically exciting cities in the world right
now. It also seems, from the outside, like there are these very close-knit
artistic communities tying together all types of musicians, artists, and
filmmakers in a free-spirited sort of way.

V: I'm probably not the best person to talk about the Portland art scene just
because I'm very, very shy and mostly opt to retreat from the world. That
said, I probably never would have become a sort-of filmmaker if I hadn’t moved
to Portland and discovered organizations like the ones I mentioned above. When
I moved to Portland, after college, I had spent four years programming a
university film series and had a good background in foreign and classic film
history but no real concept of experimental or underground film. The only
models I had of regular people making films were unnecessary imitations of
Quentin Tarantino. Coming to Portland I discovered a whole other idea of
making films, films that were small, personal, homemade, and felt completely
apart from anything I had seen before. It was not unlike discovering, at the
age of 13, that there were people who made music that was not played on Top 40
radio stations.

BLVR: So how did your awakening to experimental film unfold? What directors
helped to usher you out of the "Top 40" of filmmaking?

V: I don’t know if experimental is exactly the right word for the films that
attracted me. I think I might more use the term handmade. Some of them were
certainly experimental, but just as many were simply small or personal or
homemade. One thing that happened a week or two after I moved to Portland was
that I went to a screening by the Tiny Picture Club. This is a Portland Super
8 collective. Their logo was like the Superman logo with an 8 replacing the S.
It was a very chilly November and the screening was in a tiny, unheated
Quonset hut. There were about 50 people crammed in there, sitting on the
floor, with musicians along one side of the room. They played along to about
10 different Super8 films about dreams. The films were all very small, simple,
and joyous. Much of the footage was hand-processed and scratchy. There was
some stop action animation. There were homemade costumes and masks. There was
an introductory film set to the T-Rex song “Bang a Gong.” In it all of the
members of the club wore white jumpsuits with their logo emblazoned on the
back. They were running around a park with their cameras. There was much
pixilated action made to make them look like they were flying, levitating,
rotating in circles on the ground on their bellies. The feeling I felt sitting
in that room and watching those films was exactly like the feeling of falling
in love.

BLVR: Do you make any handmade films yourself?

The only films I've made have been super8 films with the Tiny Picture Club.
The thing that I enjoyed most with films was trying out technical experiments.
I used to work in the Equipment Room for the film school at the Northwest Film
Center, so I had access to all kinds of super8 cameras and projectors. I built
a device that could control up to three super8 cameras simultaneously and
could run them at either eighteen frames per second or off of a
intervalometer. It was pretty cool but, other than filming some friends
playing soccer in a park one afternoon, I never really figured out anything
good to point the cameras at.

BLVR: You once said that Atari is one of your favorite art forms. You said you
liked the video games where you could still see the pixels. I'm curious if
this ties in with all of these homemade ideas. Without any of the
high-fidelity bells and whistles, it seems like there is less of a separation
between the artist-creator andthe viewer.

V: I think what you said about the lack of separation between creator and
viewer is exactly right. I like to be able to get a sense of craft and
humanness behind work. When I see the little pixels rolling by in an Atari
game, I think back to BASIC programming and how hard that little computer is
thinking and how hard the programmer had to work to put all those pixels in
just the right place.

I’m very bad at actually playing Atari games. I rarely make it past the first
level. However, similar to the viewmaster, I love them as absurd little
mini-narratives. The narratives are really what give form and understanding to
the pixels. If you take a game like Space Invaders or Galaga or even Frogger,
and watch it, forgetting the narrative, you’re left with the motion of
abstract colored forms. It’s only those couple of text windows at the
beginning (which nobody pays much attention to) that provide form for the
whole structure and objective of the game. One of my favorite mini-narratives
goes along with a game whose title escapes me at the moment — it’s the one
where you are a good robot sent to save the last human family from the evil

I’ve recently encountered some interesting Flash games online that return to a
completely abstract and non-narrative form of the video game. One in
particular is called Boomshine. It’s a field of slowly moving colored balls.
The objective is to click your mouse somewhere on the screen to create an
expanding ripple. Every ball this ripple touches turns into a new ripple. You
try to turn as many balls into ripples as possible with your single click.
It’s so simple that it doesn’t require directions, yet it’s also beautiful and
incredibly addictive.

BLVR: OK, I just played Boomshine for twenty minutes and I was in some sort of
weird trance with that game. Plus, you're right about the directions. To
figure the game out, you just get to resort to simple visual assumptions
(e.g., if I do A then B happens). In the context of this conversation, it
reminds me a little of the abstract filmmaking you've been mentioning, where
you're forced to start thinking things like "That thing over there is moving
fast, and the other thing is moving slow." It engages the mind in such a
different way than narrative film.

V: I’m very untrained when it comes to watching experimental film. I don’t
think I could make an abstract film if I tried because everything inside of my
head only knows how to operate on cause and effect. But I do like to sit back
and enjoy other people’s abstractions even if I’m always very self conscious
about not appreciating them in the right way. This might be why I like
Boomshine so much. You get cause and effect alongside your abstractions. I
can’t help but trying to make sense of everything I see whether I’m supposed
to or not.

BLVR: And finally, just to clarify, Vladimir is not your birth name, right?

V: I was never enamored of my birth name and I’d always planned on changing it
when I went off to college. But one day, when I was sixteen, one of my English
classes had a class assignment in which we were supposed to pair up and write
little essays about our partners based solely on looking up their name in a
few baby books. Maybe it was just my natural impulse toward sabotage, but it
seemed like the perfect opportunity to make the change. I had a sharpie and an
index card and I made myself a name tag introducing myself by my new name.
Ever since then, I’ve been Vladimir. I have now been Vladimir for almost half of my life

Monday, October 26, 2009

T-Shirts For Scavenger Project Exhibit Now Available

Wow, what a beautiful T-Shirt! Go to the link below to find out more about this tremendous exhibit, scheduled to exhibit June 2010 at Form/Space Atelier. You have until January 5th to enter. Bon Chance!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Rock The Terminal Art Market November 7, 2009, 6-10PM will be judged by Paul Kuniholm.

Rock The Terminal Art Market November 7, 2009, 6-10PM will be judged by Paul Pauper.
Location: Art Not Terminal Gallery 2045 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Opening Reception Captured On Time Lapse

Very cool time-lapse of Form/Space Atelier Opening Reception October 9.

Find it here:

Form/Space Atelier Program For October 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For October 2009

Show Title: From Industry to Information

Show Duration: October 9- November 8, 2009

Show Description: Seattle Photographer Dan Hawkins exhibits photographs of the abandoned Fisher Flour Mill on Harbor Island, Seattle. This exhibit marks the fourth exhibit of Hawkins photographs curated by Paul Pauper, his second consecutive solo exhibit (his first was December 2008) at Form/Space Atelier. Hawkins also exhibited a show curated by Paul Pauper at Angle Gallery 312 South Washington, Seattle in the Spring of 2008, and participated in a group show at Form/Space Atelier in April 2008. From Industry to Information combines sound installation in a site-specific intercession installed at great expense and technical deployment.

Curator's notes compiled by Emily J. Hoch, Assistant Curator Emeritus, Form/Space Atelier:

Walking with Dan Hawkins: Exploring and Photographing an Abandoned Mill

In the early afternoon of August 22nd, our car pulled up along the cracked sidewalk of an industrial district of Seattle. Photographer Dan Hawkins, sound artist Paul, and I hop out of the car. As our eyes move across the landscape taking in the graffiti-covered train yards and deserted cracked sidewalks, Dan quickly outlines our route to the mill, “Okay, so, we’re going to go down to the beach. If we see anyone, keep walking. If anyone talks to us, let me do the talking. We have to establish ourselves as people with a legitimate purpose in the area before we go any farther.” Dan’s tone is casual but matter of fact. He’s done this before. He knows where we’re going, how to get there and how to handle the various situations which may interfere with our mission.
As our small party walks towards the beach, I can’t help but notice the alien nature of the industrial landscape. Along the sidewalk to our left looms a tall cement wall topped with curls of barbed wire, and to our right train cars stand idly on their tracks, waiting patiently for use as rust grows on their bellies. I glance behind me at the high rise buildings of downtown Seattle that decorate the landscape with their glistening windows in the afternoon sun as if to remind us that we really are still in Seattle.
According to Dan, the best way to “establish ourselves” and avoid awkward questions is to change plans depending on the immediate situation. In other words, though our ultimate plan is to get to the abandoned mill, at the moment we played the role of beach combers. To solidify this impression, we sit on a log along the shoreline and pretend to collect shells.
Across the water from us is an enormous shipping barge. We hear steel clanging against steel and the whining of machines as they echo across the water providing a soundtrack for the urban wasteland around us. “You know,” Dan pipes up, “most people think Seattle runs on big companies like Boeing, Microsoft and Amazon. Big and corporate. But it doesn’t. It runs on blue collar jobs like this.” He gestures towards the ship. “Steel cutting, logistics, shipping… industry. But people don’t know that. People don’t see the industry of raw materials that keeps our economy running. These raw materials are our nature, and I want to reintroduce people to that.”
After satisfactorily establishing ourselves on the beach, Dan deems it safe for us to continue our trek to the mill. We have to keep close to the water to remain out of sight of people who may question our purpose. We scramble over sharp rocks laden with brown and green seaweeds piled against a vacant lot of cracked concrete until we arrive under the cover of a forgotten loading dock. Beneath the dock we climb through a shadowy gloom, over more rocks and around half-rotted pillars along the blue-green water.
At the edge of the loading dock Paul, and I pause as Dan goes ahead to scout our route and entry point into the mill. As we sit and wait for Dan to return with further instruction, I can’t help but feel like a refugee sneaking past border guards. The experience is both exhilarating and unwelcoming.
Dan returns and escorts us to a small cave-like entrance in the foundation through which we can enter the mill. As we enter the foundation we see evidence of scrappers in the form of multi-colored wires littering the dirt ground. Dan shakes his head. He is unhappy about how much the scrappers have destroyed the historic mill.
We enter the mill by contorting our bodies through a small man lift that brings us up to the first floor of the building. In the dark of the interior, we are disoriented and must wait for our eyes to adjust before continuing.
Dan strides ahead into the next room as Paul and I, having never been to the mill, stumble through the darkness, relying on the light of Dan’s cell phone to guide us to him. “We have to be quiet in this part of the building,” Dan tells knowledgeably. “We don’t know who else is here.” With that he leads us deftly through the building’s maze of stairs and rooms until we emerge quite suddenly onto a sunny rooftop between the mill’s two great rows of silos.
“Basically,” Dan summarizes as we pause on the roof, “there are four types of people who come into these buildings and photographers are the least of your problems. There are graffiti artists, who I don’t really mind –I just see that as another form of decay, but there are also scrappers and arsonists. Scrappers are just as bad as arsonists, because they destroy these old buildings. They take so much that the building can’t support itself anymore and it collapses. Abandoned buildings hold a lot of history about the city, and this mill is a part of Seattle’s story as much as it is a part of its landscape. To destroy it is to destroy a little of Seattle. That should be prevented.”
Dan decides to give us the “grand tour” of the mill and stops first in a room just off the landing, which houses a large old-fashioned boiler, browned with age. Dan pulls out his camera and positions it carefully to one side of the object. The light from the windows streams in and reflects off the few still-shiny surfaces left on the great metal machine. As he adjusts his camera for each picture, Dan explains his relationship to this industrial object: “You know, I’ve photographed this object many times, and each time it changes. It’s like having a conversation. It shows me how I’ve changed. …It shows me how we’ve changed.”
Excitedly, Dan shows us a new room that he found only recently. The room is situated on top of one of the rows of silos and can only be accessed by crossing the land bridge which connects the two silo rows about forty stories off the ground. As we crossed the bridge, sounds of clanging metal, beeping trucks and whining machinery from the outside world enter through the windows and reverberate through the hall like a ghostly reminder of the mill’s former use. At the end of the bridge I am disturbed to find what would be one of many birds to fly into the mill and then die after being unable to escape. The presence of the bird’s carcass in that lonely hall stimulates unavoidable associations with the mill’s own death after abandonment and its slow decay as the world outside forgot it and moved on.
Down a flight of stairs we come to a long room filled with curved yellow pipes which point toward the building’s exterior. A vibrant mixture of yellow, blue and once white walls, the room functioned as a grain distributor by pushing grain through the over-head ducts and funneling it though the pipes into the silos below. Today the room stands bare, having been stripped of its ability to function by scrappers who have taken the pipes and electrical power as they scavenged for copper and other sellable materials. Though now deprived of industrial purpose, the room’s long narrow shape, bright, simple colors and repetition in the piping still provide an aesthetically pleasing setting, which Dan notes as he carefully photographs the space.
Leaving the room of pipes we re-cross the land bridge and enter a dusty-gray space, which had the same function as the previous room, but is positioned over the opposite row of silos and houses different machinery. Though their tasks are the same as the pipes and ducts in the previous room, the machines of this room consist of rows of low-sitting conveyer belts which stretch the length of the room, visually extending its length through their horizontality. With conveyer belt next to conveyer belt pulling my eye along the length of the room, I understand Dan’s nickname for the space as “The Long Room.” Accented by the presence of thick, wooden pillars, which break up the space’s horizontality and provide a vertical balance, the former factory space suddenly transcends its original function and becomes an art space.
Desiring a view from the peak of the mill, our party sets out on the slow climb of flight after flight of stairs to reach the highest floor. When we become tired of walking inside, Dan leads us outside where we scurry up flights of steep, narrow, metal steps which scale the side of the mill. As the rest of us bustle upwards, enthused by the sense of adventure, Dan walks casually behind us, cell phone to his ear, nonchalantly flicking his hand at us to communicate directions. Dan’s familiarity with the abandoned mill and his ease within the environment could not be more obvious.
When, finally, the steps end, we crawl through an open window into a narrow hallway. Following the hallway we enter a room where we see evidence of scrappers: the piles of discarded metal parts littering the floor. A Snickers wrapper, caught in the scrapped metal shards, gives the room, now stripped of functionality, the atmosphere of a garbage dump. Dan taps with the side of his foot a mechanical part, which has been ripped from the metal lockers along the wall. “See,” he says, “this is what they do. Scrappers come into these old buildings and take whatever they want, but destroy the space in the process.” The space really had been destroyed. Not only has its functionality been taken away, but its clean, mechanical lines and structural shapes, so aesthetically pleasing in the mill’s other rooms, have been reworked into a series of crooked angles and inconsistencies. Stepping over nuts and bolts which scatter the floor, we move through the room and continue our ascent to the top of the mill.
After one more flight of stairs and a small metal ladder, we emerge into the bright light of day on the mill’s highest roof. The view is incredible. We see every ingredient of Seattle’s character spread beneath our feet: the high-rise buildings of downtown sparkling in the afternoon sun, homes neatly spread across the hills as well as the machines and cranes of the industrial districts. Strangely, however, despite our ability to observe the city sprawl across the hills, the people of Seattle didn’t seem to be able to see us. Instead we are oddly invisible as we stand on this industrial peak of the Seattle skyline observing the day as it unfolds below us.
As we begin our long climb back down those many flights of stairs, Dan makes a brief but humorous comment about reentry being like a descent into hell. I don’t really get his comment until we’ve gone done at least eight flights of stairs. Just above the lowest floors, an inky blackness hovers over the stairwell, cloaking all things, the stairs, our hands in front of our faces, in a rich, creamy, but utterly terrifying darkness. Suddenly, I understand Dan’s comment perfectly.
We descend down two flights of stairs. Since no one thought to bring a flashlight, we rely on Dan to lead the way. We step gently, out fingers tracing the wall or gripping the handrail while our feet tap ahead of us, feeling the ground for the possibility of more stairs. At the bottom of the stairs, light oozes in from some unseen window, and our eyes, previously starved of light, take in a vast, vaulted space with concrete pillars holding up cavernous ceilings. As Dan explains, the great vaulted spaces in the room’s ceiling were originally the homes of some large machine. He points one out to us explaining that he’s not sure how whoever takes these large machines gets them out of the building nor is he certain what happens to them, but every once in a while, another one disappears.
Dan tries to find us an alternative exit route out of the mill instead of taking us through the man lift hole we entered through. We move through the first level of the mill rattling windows and pulling on doors only to learn that our only promising method of escape was indeed our entrance route. As we walk to the man lift we pass the former women’s dressing room. A light is on in the room, inspiring an eerie sensation that this room within the vacant mill is inhabited. Inside, mirrors still hang on the women’s lockers and the toilets still flush. Large tables and a stove are set up in the room making it seem inhabitable. As I look at the broken pottery and scattered debris covering the floor, I can’t help but feel as though we are standing in a ghostly time warp, or a space trapped between the back then and the right now, of daily use and of its current state of abandonment.
Our exit via our entry route into the building allows us a quick and deft escape from the building. Our plan had been to retrace our steps along the shoreline and under the loading dock, but to our dismay the tide has come in too high for us to successfully continue on this route. Changing our tactics, Dan leads us on a on a winding maze that zigzags around parked semi trucks and through bushes. Suddenly we can go no farther following this route –the brush grows too thickly against the side of the semi to allow us to pass. Quickly changing our plan again we assume the role of lost beach combers and march smartly across the workers’ lot to “ask for directions.” Though at first confused and upset by our presence in an industrial workspace, the manager of the worksite eventually leads us through the field of semis and along the rusted railroad tracks to the edge of the vast concrete field we had originally crossed to get to the water’s edge. There, waiting for us, is the car. We all pile in and drive across the cracked concrete, lined with crumbling walls and rippled chain link fences –back to the city and away from the urban decay with only our impressions, Paul’s sounds and Dan’s photos to remind us of the mill’s ghostly presence along the Seattle skyline.

Walking with Dan:
A Chronological Description of an Afternoon with Dan Hawkins

At 1:40 P.M. on August 22nd, 2009, Dan, Paul and I begin walking towards the mill from the North. Our intent is to move towards the beach and pretend to be beach combers in order to establish ourselves.
1:55 P.M.: We pause on the beach in order to establish our presence before moving on.
2:15 P.M.: To avoid being seen as we continue toward the mill, we creep along the shore towards the cover of an abandoned loading dock.
2:25 P.M.: We reach the end of the loading dock that stands closest to the mill. Paul and I pause while Dan moves ahead to scout the best point of entry into the mill.
2:30 P.M.: We enter the mill on its Northeast side through a small hole in its foundation. To enter the mill’s interior we climb up through a man lift.
2:40 P.M.: We move through the dusty silence of the mill. We walk through the old manufacturing rooms and climb a flight of stairs along the far wall.
2:45 P.M.: On the landing, we step through a door and emerge into the bright sunlight of one of the lower rooftops.
2:50 P.M.: We reenter the building and move into another room, which houses a large old-fashioned boiler. Dan pauses to photograph the boiler, and comments that it is one of his favorite objects in the mill to photograph.
2:55 P.M.: To access the next room of our tour, we cross the land bridge which connects the two rows of silos.
3:00 P.M.: Along the top of the silo at the end of the land bridge, lies a long, narrow room, which once functioned as a grain distributor for the silos.
3:15 P.M.: After taking a few photos, Dan leads us back across the land bridge to the room which holds the same function as the previous one though along the opposite set of silos.
3:25 P.M.: Desiring a view from the mill’s highest point, our party sets out on the slow climb up flight after flight of stairs to reach the highest floor.
3:35 P.M.: On the mill’s highest landing, we scurry up a small metal ladder, which leads us to the highest rooftop. Standing on the mill’s peak we can see all parts which make up Seattle: the industrial stock yards, the business-focused sky-scrapers of downtown, and the residential areas.
3:40 P.M.: We reenter the mill and begin the long descent down to its base. Towards the bottom we encounter an inky blackness and Paul and I must rely on the light of Dan’s cell phone to guide us through the darkness.
3:45 P.M.: At the base of the stairs lies a gloomy, concrete space with tall cavernous ceilings, which, according to Dan, originally housed huge, oval machines.
3:55 P.M.: As we search for an alternative exit route out of the mill, we stumble into the old women’s locker room. The light in the room was on, casting an eerie glow through the rest of the dark interior.
4:05 P.M.: We exit the same way we entered, though the man lift. We retrace our steps under the loading dock and along the shoreline only to find that the tide had come in and the water is too high to allow us to pass.
4:10 P.M.: Adjusting our purpose and our route, we march into the workers’ yard pretending to be lost beach combers asking for directions.
4:15 P.M.: The manager of the worksite leads us back to our car, which we climb into to drive back to the city.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Exhibit for September 2009

Form/Space Atelier Exhibit for September 2009

Show Title: Program

Show Duration: September 11- October 4, 2009

Opening Reception September 11, 6PM, as part
of Belltown Second Friday Artwalk

“Program” is a collection of Lynn Schirmer’s autobiographical large-scale figurative paintings, drawings, and other products. These recent works explore in more detail methods of external control, identity, and how experiences impact our sense of physicality. At the (opening) reception, audiences will have the opportunity to program Schirmer, or alter her mental state, by interacting with the elements in one particular piece.

Lynn Schirmer received her BFA from University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana and studied at the Atelier of Seattle Academy of Fine Art (now Gage Academy).

Artist’s website:

Attached image:

Detail of: “The 4 Corners, (Corrupted Over Time)”
Pastel on drafting film and colored paper
7’ x 7’

Curator's notes:

I had known of Lynn Schirmer's artwork for some years previous to becoming associated with her professionally in 2007. Our professional association came about as a result of an exhibit in February of 2006 I curated at 1907 2nd Avenue, Seattle, the first geographic location of Form/Space Atelier. In the course of planning the exhibit in late 2005, I met artist Julia Gfrorer ( ) a member of Cult of Youth art group. Julia Gfrorer soon after taking part in the Cult of Youth group exhibit at 1907 2nd Avenue in February 2006, recommended me to Lynn Schirmer for a curator's position at Angle Gallery, where Schirmer was director.
I contacted Lynn Schirmer and forwarded my credentials and curriculum vitae. I was instantly and poignantly impressed with Lynn's striking combination of astute professionalism and courtesy in her person, with the well-wrought and absolutely original expression of her artwork. Lynn hired me to curate Angle Gallery, I filled out the necessary paperwork as required by Artspace Projects, Inc., and I was given the keys to Angle Gallery.
During my tenure as curator of Angle Gallery, there were several outstanding exhibits; paintings by Sam Birchman come to mind, as does an exhibit of collagraphs by a collaboration of a White-Eyed Conure parrot called Carlos and a human named Steven Schrock.
There were also trying times at Angle Gallery. The familiar curator's landscape of artists failing to meet press deadlines, delivery obligations and failing to honor contracts; the usual problems with artists "acting famous". Lynn was a stalwart redoubt of leadership during these tribulations, a bulwark of managerial acumen executed with spectacular diplomacy.
I curated Lynn Schirmer's first show at Form/Space Atelier in March 2008; comprised of sculpture, painting and drawing by Lynn Schirmer with an opening reception dais by independent art critics Jim Demetre, Jae Carlsson and Steven Vroom. Lynn Schirmer presented a collection of mixed-media sculpture, as well as paintings and drawings on the theme of attachment. Some pieces referred directly to the late 1950‘’s-era experiments of psychologist Harry Harlow on rhesus monkeys. Others were the result of self reflection on her attachments, negative and positive, and how these have affected her sense of security and identity. The show utilized an ingenious variety of site-specific sculpture in a multitude of materials. Plaster limbs floated in a re-purposed construction netting. Two six-foot-long carved closed-cell insulation foam clitorises nearly touched over the gallery's dramatic stairwell space. Small paintings on one wall.
I contacted Lynn Schirmer a little while after Harlow Monkey asking if she would exhibit again at Form/Space Atelier in the near future, she declined at that time because she was to busy dealing with the aftermath of the the death of her friend Su Job. She suggested postponing Program for the Fall of 2009. Program will be her second consecutive solo show at Form/Space Atelier, and undoubtedly another magnificent critical triumph.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Exhibit August 14- Sep 6, 2009 Show Title: Outskirts Show Duration: August 14- September 6, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Exhibit August 14- Sep 6, 2009

Show Title: Outskirts

Show Duration: August 14- September 6, 2009

Opening Reception August 14, 6PM as part of the Belltown 2nd Friday ArtWalk;

Outskirts is a site-specific infiltration using photographs and a kiosk to narrate a previous site-specific exhibit by Paula Rebsom developed during a residency at the Ucross Foundation in a Wyoming prairie dog metropolis. Outskirts is Rebsom's first solo show at Form/Space Atelier and her second show at Form/Space Atelier overall. Portland-based Rebsom is the recipient of the Jan Zach Award for excellence in sculpture and the AAA Dean's Fellowship Award from the University of Oregon, where she received her MFA.

Eric Kellogg II comments on Paula Rebsom:

My favorite show in Portland this year (2006) was Paula Rebsom at the Tilt Gallery. Her work is amazing. She brings a whole new flair to photography. Her photographs were of massive wood structures, cut out in the shape of wolves. Honestly, you have to see the work. It reminds me of Bev Doolittle—when I was younger, I would spend hours gazing at my mother's Doolittle collection. When I saw Rebsom's work I had to keep coming back, sometimes twice a day. In my opinion, Paula Rebsom is the Bev Doolittle of the contemporary photography world.

Jeff Jahn comments on Paula Rebsom:

Probably the best local show up is "When I can't be here, I go there" at Tilt gallery (run by PORT's own Jenene Nagy, I just can't ignore this gem, which comes on the heels of several other decent to good shows). In addition, "WICBTIGT" is the auspicious debut of recent University of Oregon MFA grad Paula Rebsom who seems to have become ten times the artist she was 6 months ago. With just two large format images Rebsom constructs impressive somewhat pensive scenes of moody artifice but it's the little touches that win the day here, including the conceptual installation.

What I like here is that unlike Gregory Crewdson and to a lesser extent Thomas Demand, Rebsom's scenes are studies in revealed staging and rather spoiled artifice.

It is a nice installation as the two photos (one is a front yard, the other is of the back yard) seem to long for one another's phoniness… its like Breakfast at Tiffanies only with Joan Crawford as Holly and Mickey Rooney cast as Paul "Fred" Varjak not the intolerable landlord. That effect would be icky but you would have to watch that trainwreck.

Back to the photos, the house itself seems to be a non-entity, a prop for the props which sets up some nice rythms for the rest of the show. Also, like Ad Reinhardt paintings they need to be seen in person as tiny internet images can't possibly provide enough detail or contrast to represent them well. It is a nice touch of phoniness that demands there be no subsitutes.

The front yard photo, "North Dakota Badlands," sports a tiny dandelion in the extreme foreground, which highlights the simple and artificial cutout steppes in front of the ranch house and in "Howling Coyote" we can practically hear the yelping of a film foley that will never be added to this acknowledged contrivance. It's all chicanery and there is something refreshingly honest about the gloom here. Apparently all of it was accomplished with existing lighting, yet it hardly feels like an indie filmmaker's work and more like a darker and still cousin to Terry Gilliam's strange film, The Adventures of Baron Von Munchausen.

In the crowded genre of cinematic and staged large format photography Rebsom has come right out of school with something to say of her own. It isnt behind the scenes but its rather refreshing that she doesnt try to delight her audience so much as not make any promises that her work can't keep. For me it delivered more. By Jeff Jahn, October 11, 2006.

Paula Rebsom comments on her work:


I could hear the prairie dogs barking miles before I arrived in their desolate town 5 miles down a dirt road from Ucross, Wyoming, population 25. As I got out of my vehicle to survey the location for a new suburban development, a family of pronghorn circled me curiously and marked their territory along the way. The road I walked along was littered with bullet casings. The prairie dogs continued to bark as they scattered to their burrows for safety. As they disappeared into their extensive network of underground tunnels a ghostly stillness settled over the town. All that remained were a few bleached prairie dog skulls and scat that I found lying next to their burrows.

All this was very familiar to me having grown up in western North Dakota. As a young girl I thought prairie dogs were cute animals you fed crackers to, as a teenager I shot them for sport (an act I am not proud of), and as a young adult I educated people on the importance of prairie dogs in the ecosystem as a ranger for Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Although prairie dogs are small and seemingly harmless animals they are quite controversial. Farmers and ranchers see them as competition for acreage and their burrows as a danger to livestock. Ecologists consider them a keystone species playing a central role in the survival of many endangered species that prey on them or use their burrows for nesting.

This new suburban development I scouted on the 22,000-acre ranch that houses the Ucross Foundation was not for humans, but rather for the prairie dogs themselves. I constructed 85 small house facades, each with its own set of pleated curtains, to be placed in a very active portion of a prairie dog town. Over the course of three days, I staked one house behind each existing burrow, creating a visual map of the prairie dog town. For the remainder of my stay I spent the mornings and early afternoons (when prairie dogs are most active) observing their interactions with this new development. Instead of embracing this new suburban utopia, the prairie dogs abandoned the heart of the town. Only the young, naive ones remained in the homes on the outskirts.

The installation in the prairie dog town on the Ucross ranch combined elements of urban sprawl, homesteads, and ghost towns. My role fluctuates between that of a rancher, a deputy, and a park ranger, leaving room for an ambiguous narrative to form within the sequence of images. In the Outskirts project I explored my own personal relationship with these animals and also created a domestic paradox of human and animal relationships that balances on the edge of absurdity. The images act as historical documents, offering a different perspective in the complex relationships that we have developed with animals and nature.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program for July 2009

Joe Reno, American b. 1943, "The House of Orange", oil on panel, 16x48 inches, 2009.

Form/Space Atelier Program for July 2009

Show Title: The House of Orange

Show Duration: July 10- August 9, 2009

Opening Reception July 10, 6PM, as part
of Belltown Second Friday Artwalk

Joe Reno studied at the Art Students League of New York and has exhibited paintings and sculpture in Seattle since the 1970's. Matthew Kangas wrote criticism of Joe Reno's work in Kangas' recently published book "Relocations".

Sample image:

I met Joe Reno at the Ballard Goodwill. I was looking over Reno's shoulder at a 12-string guitar that had seen better days. The little kiosk was peopled with a Goodwill employee talking with Joe about the finer points of a print he had in his hand, and in the course of the conversation Joe mentioned his name to the employee, and I took notice of him, having been familiar with Joe Reno's name for some 30 years. I entered the discussion, introducing myself to Joe as a friend of Edd Cox, the owner of Gold Shoe Studios in 619 Western. Within a few minutes, we had agreed to the larger ideas of an exhibit proposal at Form/Space Atelier the following year.
As the months passed, Joe and I periodically talked on the phone, and I suggested he begin a new series of paintings on nine mahogany panels I had constructed. This became the organizing principle behind the exhibit proposed for July 2009 at Form/Space Atelier.
In February 2009, Joe and Ree Brown (see below * ) came to Form/Space Atelier during regular business hours and familiarized themselves with the space and I gave Joe six of the nine panels. He began working on the panels immediately and I received progress reports from Joe throughout the Spring of 2009.
I agreed in April 2009 to meet Joe at his house to view the paintings he had been working on. I found the old pickup in front of his house and ducked through the Alice-In-Wonderland cubbyhole in a gargantuan, towering laurel hedge, into a plein-air studio which is Reno's front yard. This mass of shapes and colors is the antecedent to the interior of the Reno residence, Joe's home since 1950. The nearly six decades have been diligently spent by Joe accumulating the peculiar wealth of artwork, art supplies, domestic effluvium, homespun ephemera and antique bric-a-brac which rivals Francis Bacon, though with a distinctly Northwest melody humming through Reno's home studio.
Joe offered me a glass of orange juice and I declined. We ascended the narrow staircase to the second storey of his home and entered the nerve center of Reno's creative expression command headquarters. The title painting "The House of Orange" sat finished in an easel facing the door as I walked in. To the left, backlit from the window providing Reno with the necessarily academic north light, was his palette. The painting and the palette looked like mother and child, both bestrewn with common hues, and the palette was caked with a residual impasto almost a half inch thick. About the room were several other paintings in the series. I photographed them, Joe and I talked more about the exhibit at Form/Space Atelier, and also about many Northwest artists Joe has known over time.
Joe and I transported the paintings and some small sculptures Joe had added to the exhibit to Form/Space Atelier in June 2009 in the huge male vehicle which is Joe's old Ford. Joe drove with deft skill, having learned as a driver in the Army. He was fast but precise. The paintings arrived safely. I may have added a grey hair to my dwindling supply of swarthy locks in the process.
Joe Reno is a unique Northwest painter and sculptor. I hope he is collected soon by SAM and other institutions.

Following Essay Reprint Courtesy Suzanne Beal.

The house is easy to find. It has an immense hedge, hot-pink trim, and a dilapidated 1969 Ford truck parked out front. It's a standout even by Ballard standards. And it suits Joe Reno to a T. He's lived in it since his family moved here from Everett in 1950, when he was 5 years old. Reno says he doesn't need to go anywhere: "I travel with my mind."The house is full of art. No, make that overflowing with art. Prints and paintings cover the walls, but just as many are set directly on the floor. There are piles of etchings and block prints spilling off the tables, which, in turn, are surrounded by various vintage printing presses that take up the better part of what may have formerly been a living room. Reno tells me he recently got rid of his stove to make room for more storage. It doesn't sound like he used it much anyway, preferring the gourmet meals of curator and critic Matthew Kangas, with whom he's enjoyed hundreds of dinners in a friendship that dates to 1980. "Twenty-six years of gobbly gobbly gobbly, yum yum yum," Reno says. He's shown his appreciation to Kangas—whom he describes as a phenomenal cook—with a number of drawn pieces. Kangas isn't alone in accepting Reno's work. A number of collectors have known Reno since his Ballard High days.
"You barter much?" I ask. "You bet," he replies. "Food, medical, dental bills...." He flashes me a winning smile.
Reno's talk is casually peppered with the names of legendary Northwest arts figures, such as Morris Graves, who praised the young artist's efforts when they showed together in 1967, and Guy Anderson, who owned a Northwest Coast Native American mask that served as the model for Reno's drawing Guy's Dog. (Anderson introduced Reno to the joys of Pernod as well.) Too young to be part of the Mystic School himself, Reno nevertheless has strong mystical leanings. He believes, for example, that American artists—and Northwest artists in particular—benefit from a psychic power emanating from our natural surroundings. His conversation is interspersed with two prominent phrases: "To make a long story short" and "What I'm driving at is this." We rarely get there, but it matters not at all. His work, like his conversation, is a joyride. At one point, he spontaneously breaks into song. Complimented on his voice, he replies, "Oh, well, I was using that high one, but I have two better ones."His art reveals multiple voices as well. "Joe Reno: Works on Paper Retrospective," now entering its final week at the Kirkland Arts Center, displays about 50 prints and paintings from three decades of work, all of them owned by Kangas (the exhibit's curator). They cover an impressive amount of stylistic ground. Figure Study (1996), for example, shows an almost calligraphic reclining female figure in egg tempera and ink that recalls Edwin Dickinson's penchant for rapidly executed portraits done in a single sitting. (And no wonder: Reno studied with Dickinson in New York.) But more impressive are Reno's abstract works, some of which playfully reproduce Mark Tobey's "white writing" in color. (Wall Painting of '48, done in 2000, is at left.) Other works, including a number of landscapes, exhibit an intense expressionism. Made up of shimmying lines in electric colors, Olympic Mountains, February, and Self-Portrait 12/30/96 reveal passion, frenzy, and unrest.Reno embodies the creative pluralism of the Northwest while remaining a native son. Though his work is in a number of Northwest institutions, including the Henry and Tacoma Art Museum, it also shows up in less-established venues, such as his old high school, where he created a 16-foot mural of Golden Gardens Park for the hallway west of the library. The Kirkland show exhibits an astounding range of styles that reference the Northwest's best-known artists, but ultimately reveals Reno's particular vision: His writhing marks suggest half-submerged animal and human forms, and the people and places of the Puget Sound radiate with intensity and pulsing color. Reprint courtesy Suzanne Beal/Seattle Weekly.

* Ree Brown
Born in Utah, Ree worked for a petroleum company in Seattle and San Mateo, California, until the late 1960's when he decided to return to Seattle and retire. Along with his partner, Ree scoured western Washington for antiques and then "peddled what we could, but there really wasn't much money in it." In the mid 1970's Ree began to draw, and then paint, pictures of "no one in particular", scenes containing birds, cats, and people. Ree paints his delicate paintings onto scraps of paper, cardboard, bits of matting, brown paper bags, and just about anything else that will hold paint. "I was always interested in art," says Ree. In the late 1980’s, Ree's paintings caught the attention of MIA Gallery who began to show his work.

Currently, Ree is represented by Seattle-based Garde Rail Gallery, and in several galleries across the U.S. Ree is also included in 20th Century American Folk, Self-Taught, and Outsider Art by Betty-Carol Sellen.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Shannon Barry at Form/Space Atelier June 12- July 5, 2009

Shannon Barry at Form/Space Atelier. Amazing talent. Contact gallery for details.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Photographer Dan Hawkins and my Friend Eva Isaksen--TOGETHER!!

Wow! What a blockbuster this is! Form/Space Atelier represented photographer Dan Hawkins and Eva Isaksen, both friends of mine at SAM gallery. You must see this show!

Form/Space Atelier Assistant Curator Emily Hoch, Curator and Impresario Paul Kuniholm and unidentified art collector at "Beautiful Simple" party 5/8/09.

A great party, a great exhibit.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Buy or barter Raleigh Briggs book "Make Your Place; Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills", written and illustrated by Raleigh:

Friday, May 15, 2009

Shannon Form/Space Atelier June 12- July 5

Shannon Barry exhibits at Form/Space Atelier June 12- July 5. Opening reception June 12, 6pm.

Form/Space Atelier Program for June 2009

Show Title: The Quiet Society

Show Duration: June 12- July 5, 2009

Opening Reception June 12, 6PM, as part
of Belltown Second Friday Artwalk

Shannon Barry studied in the atelier of Mark Kang-O'Higgins at the Gage Academy of Art, Seattle. The Quiet Society is her second consecutive solo exhibition at Form/Space Atelier, and her third, and possibly final, exhibit overall at the gallery.

Artist's Statement:

This series is called The Quiet Society because the central characters, despite their different surroundings, all share a common relaxed state.-Shannon Barry

Curator's Notes:

Shannon Barry eschews obfuscation at every chance she can, and her art is no exception. Ms. Barry has a great degree of skill as an artist, and has distinguished herself as an academic through her study at the atelier of Mark Kang O'Higgins, and since passing from Gage, formidable and sustained self-study of art literature, New York museum visits and consistent studio practice. Anyone familiar with the curriculum at the Gage Academy of Art is aware of the rigorous battery of daily life study, unquestionably the time-honored truth of an artist's training. Draftsmanship cannot be faked, where it is required for freehand expression. Ms. Barry is an outstanding draftsperson, along the lines of Lucien Freud, Alice Neel and Wayne Thiebaud. Ms. Barry paid homage to Thiebaud's hand in a years-long series of donuts and coffee cups in oil on canvas, her primary medium. She was living across the street from Top Pot Donuts at the time, and this series was a visual report, almost anthropological, of her environment at the time. This series was also Ms. Barry's first commercial success, her first collector purchasing a work from her which has fixed her current rate of value. A curated showing of this series was exhibited as part of a group show at Form/Space Atelier in April 2008.
Ms. Barry next began a series of large-scale abstract landscapes of clouds in bright, cartoon-like renderings. As a curator, I find this series to be a bold expression, and as art objects, these paintings are extremely original, eye-catching and elicit happy emotions in virtually every observer. The case for a therapeutic work of art could definitely be made with Ms. Barry's Clouds series. The "wow" factor was recorded by this curator, who sat with these paintings in an exhibit at Form/Space Atelier in August of 2008, "wow" being the consistent ejaculation of those visiting the exhibit during the duration of the show.
With the advent of the Quiet Society in June 2009, Ms. Barry returns to production of large-scale figures in oil on canvas. The characters in these paintings, with the exception of a work after John Singer Sargent, are the product of Ms. Barry's imagination. She is sure of her expression with this series. Her drafting, color-mixing and compositional skills are synergized in masterstrokes.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Integrative Intervention; "Beautiful Simple" drawings by Dipika Kohli

Design Kompany will be exhibiting some new artwork at Form/Space Atelier.

Save the date for the opening reception on Friday, May 8.

Beautiful Simple
Drawings by DK
Form/Space Atelier
2407 First Avenue
Belltown, Seattle

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program for April 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program for April 2009

Show Title: Postcards From Footsteps: Explorations of Unique and Universal  

Show Duration: April 10- May 3

Opening Reception April 10, 6PM as part of the Belltown Art Walk

Kristen Elsbeth Dallum graduated from the University of Washington School of Art with a BFA in Interdisciplinary Visual Arts.  She has worked with youth artists at Arts Corp, Seattle, finding creative solutions to individual and group efforts, and at Camp Sealth, Vashon Island, where Form/Space Atelier Curator Paul Pauper lived from 10 years old until he was 25, and Pauper still has many family members living there.  Postcards From Footsteps: Explorations of Unique and Universal is Kristen Elsbeth Dallum's first solo photography exhibit at Form/Space Atelier.  The photographs are editions of one, and are 8x10 inches.  Prices are $200 each.  Exhibit is free.

Exhibit Description:

This collection of images was created from that which I have photographed
digitally over the past few years; presented for your consideration in black and white as a commentary on contrast, these are the only existing prints of these images, each singularly available as an experiment in detachment.  Each image has been gathered from my personal encounters with charming coincidence.  Contrast speaks of borders and boundaries, which serve multitudes of functions.  They foster controversy, cooperation, and conversation.  Where we place them or determine them to fall creates consequences of our choosing, conscious or otherwise. They offer to amplify our stark differences along with our stunning similarities.  The paths we tread speak of our intentions as well as our innately wondrous nature, our
knowledge and our imagination.  What we choose to uphold and herald, what we choose to abolish and ignore: it is all there in the borders.  Beginnings, endings, pivotal circumstances, conclusions, changes and continuity are available, abundant.  Thank you for looking!   

Attached JPEG: Untitled, copyright 2008, Kristen Dallum.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Upcoming Exhibits

April 2009 Kristen Elsbeth Dallum- B&W Photography
May 2009 Dipika Kohli- Drawings and Installation "Beautiful Simple"
June 2009 Shannon Marie Barry- Paintings: Figural "The Quiet Society"
July 2009 Joe Reno Paintings "The House of Orange"
August 2009 Paul Rebsom, First solo exhibit at Form/Space Atelier, 2nd exhibit overall, photography and sculpture,,
September 2009 Lynn Schirmer
October 2009 Dan Hawkins-Photography
November 2009 TBA
December 2009 Sam Birchman- Paintings
January 2010 John Monson- Paintings: Abstract
February 2010 Matthew Kandegas-Paintings: Postminimalist
March 2010- Juliette Fretté - Paintings
April 2010- Kristen Dallum - Photographs/New Media "54th Statehood Exposition"
May 2010- Elara Tanguy - Paintings
June 2010- Michael Lane - Paintings
July 2010- Vladmaster - New Media
August 2010- Mick Lorusso - Multiple Media
October 2010- Dan Hawkins- Photos, Bethlehem, PA
November 2010- Megan Hosch-Schmidt- Interdisciplinary
December 2010- Samuel Birchman - Paintings
January 2011- John Monson - Paintings
February 2011- Beili Liu- Site-Specific Installation

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Paul Kuniholm Testifies In Washington Legislature, January 31, 2008"/> name="flashvars" value="content=[AMF0],rtmp://,Mp3:200801/2008010219&jsListener=true&stopPosition=2&propxml="/>" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="300" height="90" bgcolor="#000000" name="2008010219" flashvars="content=[AMF0],rtmp://,Mp3:200801/2008010219&jsListener=true&stopPosition=2&propxml=">

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program for March 2009

Form/Space Atelier program for March 2009

Show Title: The Return Of the Amazing Daredevil Bears

Show Duration: March 13- April 5

Opening Reception March 13 as part of the Belltown Art Walk

Aaron Murray exhibits his recent character series, the Daredevil Bears at Form/Space Atelier. Timing isn't everything, as the sage once quipped, it's the ONLY thing; the stock market has been overrun recently with the carefree, devil-may-care, Daredevil Bears. Aren't they lovable? For sure.

Aaron Murray is a visual artist, educator, and shop keeper in Seattle, WA. Murray owns a shop called Nancy with his wife Kate, Murray teaches art at several Seattle community centers, is an active member of the Capitol Hill Watercolor Society, and has been making and selling art since 1990.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For February 2009

Form/Space Atelier Program For February 2009

Show Title: Trombones Jaunes

Show Duration: February 13- March 8

Opening Reception: February 13, 6PM as part of Belltown Art Dealers Assn.
Second Friday Artwalk

Postminimalist painter Matthew Kandegas exhibits his yearly crop of paperclip
paintings, this time they are yellow paperclips on pink grounds. The images
are becoming more vague and ambiguous. As the world goes paperless, the
paperclip rides the vagaries of necessity. The scale of the paintings come
in two sizes; 18x36 and 48x96 inches. All are oil on panel save one which is
oil on fabric mounted to panel. Show curated by Paul Pauper, exhibit is
free. As a sociological intervention, wherein commerce is deliberately and creatively altered, Form/Space Atelier will pay collectors one american dollar for the rights to adopt one 18x36 inch Matthew Kandegas painting. Contact gallery for details.

Postminimalist Artist Matthew Kingston Kandegas was born December 29, 1960 in a poor section of south Seattle called White Center. He formally trained with Seattle art instructors Norman Lundin and Sharon Munger. Kandegas' work reflects the Postminimalist echo of simpler times when the hand was used to create things, such as works on paper, and how the obsolescence of paper (and the paper-clip by extension) fulfills the ultimate Postminimalist destiny of complete separation of artist and artwork. He had his first exhibit of his work in November 2007 at Form/Space Atelier at the advanced age of 45 and is represented by Form/Space Atelier, Seattle. He has become known for his paintings of paperclips and association with Kyle MacDonald, a performative artist and author of One Red Paper Clip... a book detailing MacDonalds art performance wherein he traded 14 times from a paperclip to a house. Kandegas is in the private collections of MacDonald and Lindsay Daniel, and the public collections of The Low Income Housing Institute, Cascade People's Center and other charitable organizations. His next scheduled exhibit is February 2010 at Form/Space Atelier, Seattle.

Postminimalist painter Matthew Kingston Kandegas grew up feeling the harshness and anger of White Center, a ghetto of Seattle, caused by the pall of stadium rock of the 1970s. He was born into a family of three children and a father who was a simple factory worker of Danish descent. It is sufficient to say that Kandegas’s early life has very little to do at all with his eventual career as an artist. Kandegas did not have access to any artistic materials, coming from a poor family, although he thoroughly enjoyed when his grandfather allowed the children to experiment with his paintball gun. As a child, his torment was soothed somewhat by reveries of living someday in a travel trailer on the campus of the University of Washington with his younger brother Odd, where his mother, Kristin Kuniholm had been a sorority girl at Sigma Kappa sorority and graduated Summa Cum Laude in Visual Communication. Since marrying Kandegas's father, her life was one of penury and privation, though she made sure her son Matthew understood the subtle but distinct difference between matters of the heart, as an inexplicable attraction to a bad person, and art; the creation of the sublime and sacred. Kristin Kuniholm was descended from the Finnish indigenous people Sami, and her family was known as a tribe of shaman in Vasa, Finland prior to emigrating to Seattle in 1850. Her grandfather Kuniholm was a famous Seattle area wicker-worker at Five Corners on Queen Anne hill.

His real beginnings as an artist began when Kandegas left home at 14 to financially aid his family and earn a living for himself. Like thousands of others, Kandegas changed from one dismal job to the next, extremely discouraged by the misery and hopelessness around him. As a sensitive and intuitive person, Kandegas was compelled to respond and decided to look into art as a hobby. He could not afford art school, so he attended simple life drawing classes three times a week, and in his free time studied reproductions in the Seattle Public Library. He enjoyed the works of post-impressionists, such as Modigliani, Van Gogh and Cézanne, especially the expressionist works of George Grosz, Otto Dix and Max Beckmann. These expressionist works demonstrated a means of expressing the anger Kandegas felt during the popularity of stadium rock. Kandegas considered himself a post-minimalist, and is generally considered the "forgotten" post-minimalist because his work
has been exhibited only twice during his lifetime, though he has donated many of his paintings to charity, including Lihi, Cascade People's Center. He was a shipyard worker and sketched maritime scenes while working as a firewatch under a shower of white hot slag and deafening roar of pneumatic guns and compressed air.

Throughout the 1970s, Kandegas continued to hone and refine his skills, whilst experimenting with his homemade paints, unable to afford others. He was ultimately a very self-taught artist, but this leaves him free from artistic conventions that would have been learned in art school, though he was academically trained at the University of Washington, taking studio classes with Norman Lundin, and elsewhere at the atelier of Sharon Munger.

In the late 1970s, two important social realists arrived in Seattle – Art Munny and Lotta Loven. Their images were realistic representations of harsh truths seen in society that characterised stadium rock. This had a great effect on Kandegas’s work, as he too, begins to explore confronting truths of stadium rock. However, Kandegas’s work began to take more shape in the next decade, the “Angry Decade” of the 1980s, as the artists respond the horror of marijuana abuse, incensed by the abolishment of hope, just after stadium rock appeared to be clearing up.

From Kandegas’s perceptive response to the world around him, he was recognised by two people - Art Munny and Lotta Loven. These two saw connections between Kandegas’s work and other artists, angry too at the social situation. Art Munny and Lotta Loven were members of the Nowadays Arts Society, set up to promote these emerging artists, known as the Recentists. The Society was set up in 1978 by Mark Hofer, in opposition to the Hoquiam Academy of Art, which was believed to promote conservative art and not the Recentists.

The Recentists included Albert Kandegas, Joy F. Sexton, Siddhartta Sunshine, John Longfellow, Arthur Drawbridge and Jean-Noel Vandaele. These artists met to discuss material on a regular basis. Kandegas enjoyed being part of what he saw as a like-minded group of artists, all focused on producing works along similar themes, in response to marijuana abuse, stadium rock and moral denigration. The artists also brought influences from European movements such as Surrealism, Cubism, Expressionism, Dadaism and Constructivism.

From this “Fidelis” group of Recentists, formed a group known as the Canis Fidelis which also included many social realists. The Recentists and social realists in this group shared the same concerns, and their work became focused on stadium rock and its horrors, along with moral decay and the emergence of Americanism. The Canis Fidelis was also a publication that these artists wrote for, published by Harris Shapiro. Kandegas’s original influences, Angonka Toulouse and Cyrus Vance, were part of this group. The Canis Fidelis was the major outlet for the expression of avant-garde ideas.

Kandegas’s main inspirations can be divided into periods, although he was originally influenced by the depression, post-impressionists, expressionists and social realists, also keeping in mind his involvement with the Canis Fidelis, and his responses to stadium rock. Ultimately he is always best known for paintings of paper clips, or trombones as the French call them.

Kandegas’s first significant works were produced during his involvement in the Boy Scouts. In 1980, Kandegas was called up for service and spent most of his time working in Western State Hospital drawing patients suffering from horrific wounds and mental illnesses as a result of stadium rock. He produced three important works at this stage, Seated Man, a pen and ink illustration of a man whose nose had been sliced off by a Braun blender, The Waste Treatment Plant at Fort Lawton, an image of death sitting on a stool watching and waiting, and Floating Logs, of two figures floating down a hall, a third with a demented smile. All of these images illustrated the horror and madness of stadium rock. At this time, Kandegas was influenced by raw images of death and horror, wishing to present a blunt, direct, succinct image of stadium rock’s consequences. This is similar to the way social realists wish to present their messages, although Kandegas’s actual
delivery was surrealistic and expressionistic in appearance.

In 1982, Kandegas ignored stadium rock and returned to a Seattle he did not like. He was particularly disgusted, but inspired by scenes of Seattle’s nightlife, of a city he felt demonstrated a collapse of simple morality. He was shocked and outraged by images of brutish laborers, pig-like, grinning and clutching the meager frames of young women in bawdy red lipstick, as if possessions or prizes of stadium rock, representing a clear confusion as to what stadium rock actually reaps. This painting was the catalyst for his series of works known as the Urinating on Car Door Handles, all depicting similar nightlife and exploitation of women figures, or comodification of sex, symbolized in recurring motifs; sticks or skin-toned blobs with red smiles and single, elaborately styled eyes with curly lashes. As Kandegas continues creating these images, the subjects become less and less human and occupy space in more and more disconnected ways; floating or melting,
being abducted from above, slumped on the side of the road, lying in the shadows of movie theaters. His source is clear, after seeing immoral scenes of sex, abduction, confusion and clear gender stereotyping, and maintains the same surreal, expressionistic delivery with socially realistic content.

The post-stadium rock period did not bring peace to visions at first he had hoped for, explaining humanity's status after stadium rock as “irreparably damaged”, viewing the world with great anxiety and a loss of hope. In early 1987, Kandegas traveled to Japan with a local newspaper as an art correspondent, required to interpret the devastation he saw there. He produced a monochrome pen drawing called Fishmobile; it contains no figures, just the aftermath of complete devastation, with somber tents and shelters littering the landscape. During this time, Kandegas was influenced by his sense of hopelessness after seeing the stadium rock, depression, and the fact that society had never improved. Hiroshima does indeed appear hopeless and empty.

Upon returning, he broke up with Candace Carson, who had already had a son, Swiney, in 1975. Out of bitterness, Kandegas left for Europe later in 1987 for the next 13 years. In England and Europe until 1998, Kandegas painted many prostitutes, highly influenced by the fact that no city seemed to be free of this “disease” of prostitution, and so painted them in abundance. He then moved to New York in 1998 and his subjects switched from the city to Hoquiam, feeling rather homesick. Where some works of Bronco Nagurski and Elijah Pitt had reached international level, Kandegas rejected them as being sports-themed. He depicted the landscape as being a harsh, barren and sterile wasteland. He distorted stereotypes and icons of the White Center, including early professional football stars George Blanda and Walt Suggs. He was influenced by the sheer barrenness and hopelessness that White Center conveyed, and added these icons as pawns to White Center's deadly game.

Throughout the 2000s, Kandegas began to face many personal traumas. He had begun to form a good relationship with Swiney, who had been adopted by Angonka and Napoleon Toulouse, but unfortunately he committed suicide in 1999. A few years later, the Toulouses both died within a week of each other from being run over by a motorcar. Kandegas's father found them lying in the street, and served them with rice to his sister who was visiting. He began to feel that many of the people he had influenced in his life were quickly slipping away from him, looking back at Candace Carson, who had also died in 1990. As a tribute, and to immortalize his contemporaries, he produced the "Paperclips Series". The series saw Kandegas move away from his most celebrated themes, and to variations of the paperclip, a representation of an explorer’s conflict with the environment that eventually fuses the two together to become of the same element, as both the landscape and the
heads were created using the same medium, texture and color. His other major subjects were the “intruders” or “fauns” that became mindless metallic beings that patrolled dead environments with guns and weaponry. This added to his recurring themes of hopelessness and loss.

Kandegas’s style, subjects and attitude stay the same throughout his life as an artist. They are implied but never visible. Only his resolute image- the paper clip- is allowed to speak for all the figural ideas, theoretical landscapes, virtual still lifes. His attitude always comes across as perceptive, pessimistic, disgusted and generally critical of the environment around him. Whenever he portrays males or females together, they seem to be sexually confused – the females maintain an extreme prostitute image and the males appear lustful and greedy. He often depicts scenes of madness, destruction and horror especially in response to the stadium rock. He portrays many scenes of hopelessness in his post-stadium rock stage, of the desert, the total eclipse of 1979 and of his personal losses. And paperclips.

His style retains a surreal, expressionistic quality. He often places subjects on barren, dream like and hostile plains, with confused or distorted bodies, appearing surrealistic. He wonders in text printed on the back of several of his works on paper if Klimt had been frought with minimalism if his strokes would resemble his own, paper clips suggested in later embodiments, strokes which held the threshold of making marks ambiguous, vague, but present. He enjoys disfiguring his subjects’ forms to emphasize an issue or point, while being very expressive in his appliance of mediums, linking to expressionism. His messages however are ultimately of social realist quality, apart from his surreal explorations into his losses in his final artistic stage. He always wants to bluntly and confrontingly display social issues that are harsh, but real and very much a part of society. But mostly paperclips.

Kandegas’s subjects often recur. He starts with many psychologically disturbed subjects in his stadium rock period, and also wounded subjects. He then moves to a subject of modern evil, with the recurring motif of the fake smile, single eye and pole and/or blob-like masses for bodies, with pig-like males. His subjects then move to hopelessness and loss in the post-stadium rock period, including the desert, football icons, Antipodean Heads, “Fauns” and Puget Sound. The theme linking all of these is often moral confusion.'' But mostly he paints paper clips.