Monday, February 28, 2011

Come and see me at The Bite-Size Variety Hour

I've done art shows at a few different venues by now, but I've never done anything quite like The Bite-Size Variety Hour.  It's an opportunity to share my work in front of a live audience at the Greenhouse Theater Center with six other artists.  Here's the press release:

The Institute for Arts Entrepreneurship invites you to the Bite Size Variety Hour!
Tuesday, March 8 at 7pm
Greenhouse Theater Center 2257 N. Lincoln Ave

The Bite-Size Variety Hour, an alternative “show and tell” for artists, opens on March 8 with its inagural show at the Greenhouse Theater Center in Chicago. The program, an external program of the Institute for Arts Entrepreneurship, showcases the creative business of making art, and features seven emerging artist presenters.

The Bite Size-Variety Hour channels “American Idol” by including a panel of three arts entrepreneurs who will give on-the-spot feedback on the artists’ branding. The audience is also encouraged to offer feedback, sharing what they liked, what they missed, or offer other creative ways they could present their work.

Through this innovative format, the Bite-Size Variety Hour simulates the experience of a “live-studio audience,” complete with cameras, MC, and cash bar. Featured artists share their “branding,” in the hopes of gaining constructive feedback from both their peers as well as professionals.  In the Bite-Size Variety Hour, all the presenters will come away with a better sense of themselves and their work, while the audience gains backstage access to the entire artistic process, from creation to marketing.

Did I mention cash bar?

Admission is $5, advanced registration is recommended. RSVP at:

Friday, February 11, 2011

So beautiful it hurts: The Tragic Muse at the Smart Museum of Art

As the grey days of early February descend upon me, as I find myself encumbered by heavy snows and treacherous roads, when it seems like the sun is setting all day long, I find myself in a solitary and contemplative mood.  And it's just the right mood to be in to appreciate the Smart Museum's subdued yet thought provoking exhibit, "The Tragic Muse."  It is a theme that thoroughly complements the work that I am doing now in my "Dark Night of the Soul" series, a study of art and emotion. 

Works in a variety of media, created over the course of two centuries share the common thread of exploring the pathos of the human condition, using both narrative subject matter and pieces that lean more towards abstraction.  The impressive roster of artists includes Manet, Munch, and Redon.  Many of the tragic figures are characters you've probably read about before, such as Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet and Ophelia, and Lady Macbeth, though they also include anonymous real-life people dealing with everyday tragedies of the times, like the death of a child.  As I continue to incorporate more emotional content into my work, I am inspired by what other artists before me have done to express feeling in their work and evoke feeling in those who view their artwork.  Though times have changed, emotion remains timeless.

There are numerous public events being held at the museum in conjunction with the show, so visit their website for more information.  The Tragic Muse will run until June 5, 2011.

and here is the address:
The David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art
5550 S. Greenwood
Chicago, IL
And you know what?  The Smart Museum is free!

Fall in love with art tonight

fall in love with art - gothic glow

Art, like love, is dedication
--Hans Hofmann, painter

Valentine's Day evokes so many different emotions. For some it is beautiful, for others painful, for others bittersweet. It's a time when many define or are defined by relationships, as lovers, as loveless, as lonely.

No matter what your personal feelings about the holiday, you can still find something to love at the Second Friday open studio tonight at the Fine Arts Building.

This month’s Second Friday open studio night is the perfect time to rekindle your romance with art. I, along with many of the artists of the Fine Arts Building, will be opening up my work space to visitors from far and wide. Come meet local artists and musicians in a building whose very ambiance exudes inspiration and creativity.

what's new

For now I have forsaken my torrid love affair with garish colors for a tryst with deeper, more mysterious hues. This series-within-a-series is entitled the Dark Night of the Soul series, and there are now four works in total.

And because I am a romantic at heart, this evening's menu will feature Argo Tea's ValenTea Passion, cupcakes from Sugar Bliss, and dark Ghirardelli chocolate as bittersweet as unrequited love.

It's a great night to bring a date, or come alone and meet someone else who appreciates art as much as you do. Whether your love life is a masterpiece or a work in progress, this is your night to fall in love with art.


the details:

Fall in Love with Art
5-9 p.m.
410 S. Michigan Ave
Studio 632F
Chicago, IL 60605

tears, acrylic paint, and pain: new work in the Dark Night of the Soul series

The "Dark Night of the Soul" Series so far - paintings by Tiffany Gholar

The night whose sable breast relieves the stark,
White stars is no less lovely being dark

--Countee Cullen, "From the Dark Tower"

I have continued painting through the sadness. Having no assigned requirements to fulfill, being left entirely to my own devices, I have the freedom to look within and express how I feel.  My desire to paint with bright colors again has been fleeting. I still find myself in a dark, bottomless night, fraught with unseen perils. Only recently have I begun to see a brightening horizon ahead.

Perhaps these two most recent additions to the Dark Night of the Soul series, Pain's Grey and Lacrimosa, will be the last ones of the series.

Pain's Grey

Pain's Grey is made of paper scraps, acrylic sheets, and dried up Mod Podge salvaged from the jar. Highlights of silver and graphite produce its darkly gleaming tones.

Lacrimosa, which means "weeping" in Latin, has a form that is reminiscent of its title. It is streaked with "tears" of paint and various media, coursing down a torn paper surface.


In this video, you can watch as rivulets of paint trickle down the painting.

The chief ingredients of both were tears, acrylic paint, and pain.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

New Artist Statement for a new year


Can't go out, so I might as well blog.

My artist statement is something I always wanted to change, but never got around to.  Part resume, part mission statement, part artistic raison d'etre, an artist statement is a troublesome thing to write.  Yet the idea for this new one came to me when I committed myself to doing the most difficult task of Week 4 of The Artist's Way: Reading Deprivation.  Yes, without any books to read, without TV and the Internet to distract me from my thoughts, I found myself composing a new artist statement.  And now that I'm snowed in, I finally have time to type it up and post it.  Here it is:

I find things with interesting textures and think, I want to make something out of that. The objects I find are often otherwise useless: containers, packing materials, packaging, paint that dried on my palette. They are the residue of our disposable, one-time-use material culture. By making art with these objects, I give them a purpose again. They are rescued, redeemed, revived. I give these impermanent things permanence and transform them to unnoticed to noticeable. I draw attention to the rhythmic interplay of light and shadow on corrugated cardboard, the dreamlike diaphanous nature of plastic shopping bags, the brilliant hues of the bottles that make our packaged beverages seem all the more appealing. And I call this style of working with the byproducts of the products we buy Post-Consumerism.
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