Best of Artomatic, Floor 2

Ben Tolman gets my "Best of" pick for the second floor--his exquisite drawings, semi-crude presentation, and oversized, overtly-honest statement all seemed to strike the right note for AOM: Ben Tolman

In case you can't make out the writing on the wall, it reads:

Hello whoever you are, here are a few drawings I made. Your [SIC] probably tired from too much walking around so feel free to sit in my chair here for awhile. Take a  look at this stuff here on the wall or the stuff I left for you on the table. If you like some of this stuff you can get it on my website! Please put something in my guestbook so I will know you were here. I especially like it when people leave me little drawings. That means you. Oh, one more thing by the time you read this I will have just gotten married and I will off wandering around Europe, so I won't be here to keep an eye on my space, so if you don't mind, tidy it up a little for me. I hope I at least provided you a little entertainment while you rested up. And I hope you enjoy the rest of you [SIC]  day.

Ok, bye.

Ben Toleman

I took his suggestion and sat down to leave him a sketch. It's difficult to draw in someone else's sketchbook, I realized (how easily the part of your brain that allows you to work uninhibited gets switched off).

Apparently, his statement also inspired one of his viewers to write a confessional as well, which I thought was sweet:

Ben Tolman guestbook

Name-dropping at Artomatic

I went to Artomatic yesterday evening to drop off the guest book for our show. I didn't have much time to linger before it closed, so I decided to take a quick look at the work of people I already knew who were exhibiting. Pictures and assessments below. John Guernsey I met him briefly at Pyramid Atlantic last year, and after having a pleasant chat about art-making, he purchased one of my screenprints for $20. Nice guy! I think I might buy one of these etchings, if they haven't sold out yet--at $175 they're obscenely underpriced, and would look awesome above my couch:

John Guernesy

Also, I was charmed by his artist statement. Short, honest, and mananges to use the word "subconscious" without sounding pretentious:

John Guernesy statement

Andrew Wodzianski I remember when Andrew was a TA at MICA in my freshman drawing class and painting huge religious-looking allegorical portraits--plus ca change...well, not really. Though looking at this work is akin to Caravaggio deciding to create Roy Lichtenstein comic panels (er, best analogy I can come up with for dark realism going pop art). The photos below are the ones that caught my eye (Lenny Campello apparently liked the same one as me):

Andrew WodzianskiAndrew WodzianskiAndrew Wodzianski

Marty Ittner My former screenprinting buddy has done some luscious encaustic colleges on floor 5, which make me remember why I was obsessed with fish imagery for awhile:

Marty Ittner

Allegra Marquart Another MICA connection--I took Allegra's Illustrative Print class as a student, and was pleasantly surprised to find her work on the same floor as me. Every piece of art of hers that I've seen has been playful and flawlessly executed, and these glass sculptures were no exception:

Alegra Marquart