Friday, September 20, 2013

Weekend Art Wrap-Up: What You Missed, and What You Can Still See

This weekend saw the openings of 3 off-the-radar art shows, sponsored by Subtext Gallery, Thumbprint/Lombardo, and Suicidal Octopus, respectively.  Featuring cool, digitally manipulated photos, eclectic mixed media, and street art on miniature garbage bins (!), each show had something new to offer the San Diego art community and should not be missed.

Though I generally avoid Kettn
er Nights like the plague, when Subtext announced a special photography show on Friday, 9/13 called ANIUM, featuring the unique digitally manipulated photographs and short films of Charles Bergquist, I had to go.  I missed his last public showing, and now that I'm working on my own portfolio, I'm always up for new ideas.  Bergquist is known for his unique digital overlays and psychedelic colour choices, as well as his bright, robust photography direction in music videos, short films, and his own art film pieces.  The focus of his art photography is definitely on the art, and I wish I could have spoken to him more about how he does some of his photo tricks.  The show itself was sparsely hung, none of the still shots framed and they were attached to the walls with magnets, making them look as if they were hanging to dry in a darkroom.  There were also several film pieces for sale in individual TV boxes which ran on loops of 5-10 second short films, including one stand alone box that was about 8' high.  The films were beautiful and had varying speeds to showcase each subject in a unique way.  The show at Subtext runs until October 13 with with gallery hours on Saturdays from 12-3 and viewing appointments available if you email  Thanks to Dylan (suddenly beardless!) and John for bringing this unique show to us.

Also on Friday 9/13 was "Lucky 13," an event run by local legend-cum-desert flower, Guy Lombardo and hosted by 57 Degrees.  57 Degrees is a new wine and craft beer bar and retailer in Middletown, where the Pier 1 Outlet used to be.  It's a really cool spot, and I think it's a great idea to have shows there.  I didn't even know the place existed until I heard of this show, so the art is doing its job promoting the venue.  57 Degrees has a great selections of rare wines and what looks like some good food.  The art show was a mixes bag that night; everything from Picasso-esque modernism to haunting Native American to abstract pieces to Guy's own more Pop Art selections on found objects (my favourites, unsurprisingly).  The event also featured live music from
Mantis, a band put together in part by Thumbprint Gallery's Johnny Tran. Mantis is sort of an experimental EDM hybrid, very cool.  A video of part of the performance is featured below.  I believe the show is still up at 57 Degrees, but I'm not sure how long it will be on so stop by soon, get drunk, buy some wine, and check out all the varied art.  For more info, go to the 57 Degrees website or contact Guy Lombardo on his blog.

Lastly on Saturday, 9/14 we had "Deconstruction of Art" at Thumbprint Gallery, guest curated by Suicidal Octopuss.  Don't know who Suicidal Octopuss is?  Well, you should.  For shame.  Suicidal Octopuss is an
independent urban art collective started by two prolific street artists, snak3oil and pid.  Their ranks have since grown to include the illustrious likes of Bobby Draws Skullz, Lord of Stink, We Are Zombies, and Grumpus.  All these and more have works in the Thumbprint show.  I'm not exactly sure what the name of the show means; perhaps it's a nod to the fact that many of the pieces are done on mini-trash bins, spray paint cant, and broken skate decks.  I guess you can't get any more deconstructed than that, but despite the media used, the pieces are all bright and well-composed.  Constructed well for being so deconstructed.  Either way its a great street art collection, and best of all it's portable!  The show will run at Thumbprint Gallery  until October 6.  Gallery hours are Weds., Thurs., Saturday, and Sunday from 12-4 or by appointment.  Thumbprint Gallery is
owned and run by Johnny Tran of Mantis - this guy is everywhere!  For more information about the show, go to or to the Suicidal Octopuss Blog or Facebook page.

So, this is my last plea: get out and see some shows, and maybe buy yourself a mini trashcan with a rat spray painted on it or a piece of particle board with a crazy Pac Man ghost figure.  The San Diego street art scene, though alive and well, isn't going to support itself!

No comments:

Post a Comment