Category Archives: Studio Visits

My Day with Andre Smits and Artist in the World

Friday, February 8, 2019 I spent the day with Andre Smits a Dutch photographer who was here in Los Angeles photographing local artists in their studios. Link to his website is below.

I had seen his photos popping up around my facebook feed and since I too have an art project that involves artists I started researching what his was about… and from what I saw I wanted to be part of it. I contacted him by email and asked how he works and eventually we set a day/time for our touring day to begin.

My job was to line up the artists in my area that I would drive Andre to over the day. The SouthBay area has many artists and some were not available and many I knew were not on the route. Timing was important and our day was a Friday so thank goodness for mapquest.com and their route planning help, we were able to make our schedule without stress.

I wanted to document the day for my website www.ArtistArtandStory.com but didn’t want to take the same photo that Andre was taking. The slideshow is of the day with the artists interaction.

Artists we saw this day: Tm Gratkowski, Bondo Wyszpolski, Genie Davis, Valerie Wilcox, Lance Richlin, Hung Viet Nguyen, Beth Elliott, Lowell Nickel, Lucinda Rudolph, Stuart Hamilton

Click on the images to begin and advance the slideshow.


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Karrie Ross

Karrie Ross

Andre Smits

Andre Smits

Tm Gratkowski

Tm Gratkowski

setting the shot for Bondo Wyszpolski

setting the shot for Bondo Wyszpolski

Bondo Wyszpolski

Bondo Wyszpolski

Genie Davis

Genie Davis

Valerie Wilcox

Valerie Wilcox

Valerie Wilcox

Valerie Wilcox

Lance Richlin

Lance Richlin

Lance Richlin

Lance Richlin

Hung Viet Nguyen

Hung Viet Nguyen

Hung Viet Nguyen

Hung Viet Nguyen

Angels Gate

Angels Gate

Beth Elliott

Beth Elliott

Lowell Nickel

Lowell Nickel

Lucinda Rudolph

Lucinda Rudolph

Stuart Hamilton

Stuart Hamilton

Angels Gate

Angels Gate

Angels Gate

Angels Gate

Karrie Ross, Peggy Sivert, Andre Smits

Karrie Ross, Peggy Sivert, Andre Smits

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

SoLA Gallery install

Artist in the World website

Artist in the World website

SoLA blog

SoLA blog

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The day started with Andre taking the bus to my location me picking him up. We had a cuppa and then he did my shoot. He takes only a few minutes and my studio is small so it went quickly, at some point he said “reach” and I did and voila it was done. You see, Andre shoots you from the back so there is no worrying about smiles eyes hair etc, just that perfect view so new to us artists, our back. Us seen from the back with our world, our work in front and around us… a little unsettling at first when you see the shot but eventually all I saw was the me in front of me… the beauty of my studio art and materials. Then our day on the road began.

Each artist welcomed us for their shoot, allowing Andre to set the location by looking in his camera for just that perfect shot. Tm Gratkowski was the first on our list and his dog Ziggy was watching carefully. We chatted, discussed his amazing paper collage artwork… I kept Ziggy company when the photo was taken. We said our goodbyes and off to Bondo Wyszpolski next. Now Bondo is a writer for EasyReader, other publications, books, and a creative in his own right and suggested a book store for his shot and he surprised us with the book store being Korean! but his stance and creativity shows through and one doesn’t even notice. Next up was Genie Davis another diverse writer, her online magazine Diversions LA is one of the places we go to read about whats going on in the art world and other industries, and she also writes fiction. We then stopped over a California Pizza Kitchen for a quick lunch before heading off to shoot Valerie Wilcox studio located behind her home, a restored and charming craftsman bungalow. Her wabi sabi art is always a joy for me to see and she explained the concept to Andre. Next on the route was Lance Richlin at his studio where he works and teaches art classes. Mostly figurative, his work reminds me of the Dutch Masters, I was very interested. We said our goodbyes and off we went to our last stop before heading to San Pedro… Hung Viet Nguyen‘s studio where he had two large paintings he was working on to help set the stage of the work he does… wine, cheese and good conversations later we were off to San Pedro and Angels Gate Studio complex overlooking the Pacific from a hill top location. Beth Elliott was first on the list and her studio filled with 3D ceramic, crocheted skirt performance pieces and artwork on the walls and floors. What a delight she is and generous to discuss her process and location. Then she walked us over to Lowell Nickel and his ceramics studio. He uses a lot of molds, and the hearts with the pebbles inside for musical entertainment caught my attention, and he shared his secrets of the krackle texture he does. Our final Angel Gate stop was to Lucinda Rudolph and her colorful paintings everywhere studio, so many bright joyfilled colors and subjects. She directed us next to her neighboring artist Stuart Hamilton and his delicate thoughtful work using maps as the background that he carefully draws over bringing to life his view of subjects rocks and locations.

The day ended driving north on the 110 fwy headed back to my place where I dropped Andre off once more to take the bus back to the downtown area he was staying at.

Thank you Andre for the opportunity to share with you a great day of artists and stories.
More about his story and his project can be found at http://www.artistintheworld.com

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The end shots in the slideshow are from one of the four days he and his assistants worked at installing the mural show at SoLA Gallery on Slauson in Los Angeles.

 

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Studio Visits: The Brewery Los Angeles

The Brewery Artwalk Los Angeles, CA
http://breweryartwalk.com

I have been visiting the Brewery in downtown LA for years and each time I see something different that catches my eye. I have many friends who live there… the art spaces are amazing. Some have tall open ceilings and others have garden walkways. There is a lot of asphalt and a park right in the middle of the complex. It also is home to about 3 galleries LA Artcore being one of them.

There is a restaurant named Barbara’s where you can find artists and business people hanging out eating or having a conference. It’s certainly a destination location… and one not to miss.

(click on image to begin slideshow)


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Anna Stump and Daphne Hill

Jill Sykes

Theodore Svenningsen

Miri Polsky

Ada Pullini

Bruce Dean

Charles Swenson

Emily Elisa Halpern

Patrick Haemmerian

Guillermo Bert

James R. Eads

Jane Szabo

Matty Robinson and Eric A. Wahl

Yvonne Beatty

MNKR Brand

Bibi Davidson, and Dwora Fried

Nicole Fournier

Victoria Sebanz

Oskar Sheldonian

Susan Savory Dean

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[from their website] We are one of the oldest and largest artist colonies in the world, celebrating over 30 years. Covering 23 acres in 14 buildings of live-work spaces, 500-700 artists and businesses call The Brewery their home. Twice a year, we open our doors and invite the public to enjoy our open studios at The Brewery Art Walk.

The Brewery Art Colony, located in Los Angeles, has been called the largest live-and-work artists’ colony in the world. The compound sits on twenty-one former warehouses – with an old Edison power plant chimney dating to 1903 – house work studios, living lofts, restaurants and galleries. 
 
The Brewery is home to practitioners of a variety of artistic mediums from painting, sculpture and photography to industrial design, architecture and experimental new media
 

The Beginnings

The Brewery Art Colony began in 1903 as the Edison Electric Steam Power Plant and then as a Pabst Blue Ribbon brewery. Years later it was converted into artist lofts.
 

The Artwalk

The Brewery Art Walk is a twice-annual free event showcasing Los Angeles artists selling gallery-quality fine art at studio prices. Artists open up their homes to the public and allow them to browse and purchase their artwork in their lofts. The Art Walk offers visitors a unique chance to walk door to door to visit artists in their workspaces. 
 
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Studio Visits: Santa Fe Art Colony Los Angeles

Santa Fe Art Colony Art Walk October 2017
http://www.santafeartcolony.org/

For some years now I’ve been walking the artwalks in Los Angeles, and now finally with this site I can document further the memories of the Artists I visit, so gracious and open with their sharing of art and spaces. The conversations this year were especially contagious, I seem to be taken in on a deeper level than before. A greater connection being made. Truly a must see when the next one comes around. Be sure to visit their website and sign up for notices…not to be missed.

[from their website] “The Santa Fe Art Colony is a live / work studio complex in downtown Los Angeles whose residents are professional artists making, teaching and promoting art in the region and the world. The annual open studios have been run by residents of the art colony since 1988. The original brick portion of the Santa Fe Art Colony was built in 1906 by entrepreneur C.B. Van Vorst, and was used as a mattress factory until the 1940’s. In 1988 the complex was renovated and developed into artists’ lofts by aa group of partners.

“A hidden neighborhood located on the outskirts of Los Angeles. Some have the pleasure to visit and collaborate with fellow artist’s at one of the spaces in the colony. Fifty-Seven in total, it’s private, quiet, a place to get work done.”

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Center Courtyard of the location

Kate Delinge

Stu Needman

Lillian Abel

Steve Winaver

Peggy Nichols

Diane Cockerill

Julie Arnoff

Mike Vegas Dommermuth

Fatemah Burnes

Sharon Ryan

Don Lewis

Dawn Arrowsmith

Laurel Paley

Ewa Pietraszak

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Studio Visit: Sonja Schenk

Artist: Sonja Schenk
Descipline: painting, 3D, fabrication
Location: California
Website: http://www.sonjaschenk.com/

Sonja Schenk Los Angeles Artist

I recently visited with my friend Sonja Schenk at her studio in Culver City, CA. It’s a storefront but not at all hidden… it’s bright orange. I went because she is doing a welding/metal work residency at Cerritto College. We visited for about an hour before she had to leave for the drive south. I wait with great anticipation for her residency show in a few months. It’s going to knock your socks off.


Sonja Schenk is an internationally-exhibiting artist who was born and raised in Los Angeles. She began with video installation works and has since turned to painting and sculpture. Recently had a solo exhibition at the Museum of Art and History (MOAH) in Lancaster, California and also at the Prescott College Art Gallery in Arizona, and she created a commissioned outdoor sculpture for Porch Gallery in Ojai, California.
 
“My environment has influenced my work in another important way: props, backdrops and other tropes of “cinema” are often present. Illusion, sleight of hand and the facade are common elements in my art. … I hope to provide a meditative yet physical vantage point for the viewers of my art, an environment for reflection.”

 

 

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Studio Visit: Laura Larson

Artist:  Laura Larson
Discipline: Sculpture
State: CA
Website http://www.larsonart.net

Bio / Statement:

Laura Larson grew up in Chicago and was nourished by field trips to the Art Institute and participation in theatrical productions in college. In 1979 she moved to Los Angeles became a feminist and joined Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party.

Larson’s work reflects her dual interest in story-telling and visual representation the building blocks for her consistent interest in Sculptural Installations and Narrative Tableau. Her current work explores our relationship to culture and its affect on our animal co-inhabitants.

She has exhibited her work extensively both regionally and nationally and been commissioned for multiple public art projects throughout L.A. county.

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Studio Visit: Hiro Yamagata at Bielanski-Gallup Studios

(photo: July 27, 2017 Hiro with David Gallup at studio in Santa Rosa, CA)

Flash back to 2002... I just purchased a condo in Palm Springs and started to update the whole 3 bedroom/1 bath space… when I found myself walking around Home Depot looking for tile and hear a voice… “Are those crystals?” I turn to see a man, bright eyes looking into mine… asking about the multiple bracelets I was wearing on my left wrist… “Yes, all crystals… bright and colorful.” I replied. We then had an interesting conversation of Q&A, about where I got them, and how his daughters might like them, and what I was doing with my condo, and how we were both artists. We exchanged contact info and went our separate ways.

A bit later he invited me to his “studio” on PCH in Malibu. Thinking I was going to a smaller type place since the art I knew him for was on the smaller very detailed side… only to be totally taken aback at the full almost a block long three story building, multiple layers and processes space I walked into. The initial staircase took me up and up past floors of installs and work in progress. I must say, I have never seen the likes of this type of creativity since. I very much enjoyed our conversations and learning about his art. We had a few other conversations and then our lives took different paths and we fell out of touch.

Fast forward to July, 2017 at David Gallup studio in Santa Rosa, CA…

I received an unexpected email inviting me to an afternoon with Hiro Yamagata at the Bielanski-Gallup Studios to hear Hiro talk about his life as an artist,  and share the events of the last 12+ years and what drove him from the height of fame and wealth to embrace a Taoist, simple lifestyle far from the camera’s eye, creating paintings few people will ever get to see.

The home/studio is situated on a leveled hill top at the end of a downward road. All white with an unobstructed view of the hills around it…simply beautiful. David and wife Nansi’s art was placed around on walls bringing color to an otherwise monotone decor. Beautiful water scenes and collaborations…I felt comfortable and welcome.

It was a small gathering of artists from the Santa Rosa area, some were students of David. All had interesting experiences to share… I think I was the only one who had personally known Hiro. We learned that Hiro was driving down from Northern California and would be here shortly. I wondered if he would remember me. When he arrived he did remember me… we talked a little, sharing what happened in our lives over the years.

After eating a light lunch, we gathered in the studio to hear about Hiro’s life and journeys, his land in northern California and the very large work he is making now… we asked many questions and explored David’s work at the end.

I’m looking forward to the next gathering… soon I hope.

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Studio Visit: Casper Brindle

I went to visit Casper Brindle, and his studio helper daughter. We had a lively conversation, I learned so much from his sharing about paint and process. About how he explores different ways to show light and space. He shared the models he makes for the larger installations, planning spacing and paint. These models were about reflections and dimensions and seeing beyond one to the next through openings created in the monolith-like shapes. An extension creations from his signature work of imagined colorful horizons, seemingly dipped in a resin reflection of dimensional space. Thank you Casper for the fun experience.

Casper Brindle, artist Los Angeles, CA

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Studio Visit: Francisco Alvarado

My work reflects life experiences through various colorful abstractions.
My inspiration comes from nature and my travels.
Using bold colors and patterns I am constantly exploring new territory.

Studio Dog with Francisco Alvarado, June 2017

I utilize both technology and hands on manipulation of acrylic paint, mixed media and digital imaging to create my work.

My series, Without Brushes, consists of drawings made on an IPad and later finished with a photo editing tool. These artistic explorations took me in a new direction of combining my paintings into a series of Digital Art.

http://www.pakoart.com/

 

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