The Non-Definitive Guide To Life

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Flashback Friday | Interview with Kevin Peterson “Artful Chunky Monkey”

ART, INTERVIEWS - June 17, 2016

Kevin Peterson’s “The Thaw” from 2015

In 2010 I interviewed artist Kevin Peterson for my blog, My Favorite MAOI (music art or inspiration). I had seen his work on an art site I would frequent to view the artists of the day. This was a few years before he was picked up by my art family at Thinkspace Gallery. Now his work is selling out at every show and his work is gracing the cover of the Red Hot Chili Peppers latest album, “The Getaway”. Peterson’s grown tremendously as an artist over the last six years and I’ll be interviewing him later this year for his exhibition this August with Thinkspace. In a toot my own horn fashion and hipster inclinations of “I heard about it first” here is my interview with Kevin Peterson from 2010.

Originally Published on www.myfavoritemaoi.com August 23, 2010

circa 2010

Name: Kevin Peterson
Nickname: K. Peterman, Kelvin, Uptown, K. Pumpernickle, Roger Pudactor, Kpeezy
Sign: Taurus

Favorite:
Breakfast food– Donuts!
Scent– Donuts!
Flower– Donuts! I mean Lilies.

Q1. How many times have you been pulled over? And why?
A1.Like ever?? I dont know -several. Expired registration, inspection, driving without headlights, tail light out. Littering (i know thats bad but i was just a stupid kid). Curfew violation (also a stupid kid). Im not a speeder though!

Q2. What animal is your spirit guide?
A2.Liger

Q3. What’s your vice?
A3.Peanut butter cups. Donuts! Oh and nicorette.

Q4.If you could live in a movie for a day, which movie would it be? Would you be yourself or another character?
A4.The Departed. I’d be Marky- Mark, I think hes the only one who makes it out alive.

Q5.If your art was an ice cream flavor which one would it be?
A5.Chunky Monkey – cuz I like things that rhyme.

Q6.Did you have an imaginary friend as a child?
A6.I dont think so.

Q7. Personal Quote?
A7.”Be the change you want to see in the world” I dont usually get the credit for it – but yeah- that was all me.

Q8.Do you believe in horoscopes and zodiac signs?
A8.Maybe- but I dont pay much attention. I had to look up how to spell Taurus.

Q9.Do you drink coffee? If so how many cups a day?
A9.For sure- 3 or 4

Q10. Best show you have ever been too?
A10.I really loved Will Cotton’s show at Mary Boone last year with the big gingerbread houses.

I fell in love with Kevin Peterson’s work the moment I saw the juxtaposition of innocent children in a graffiti filled playground. They are as at home as they would be running across lush green fields. He captures their expressions with his talent for realism. From the texture of the walls that colorful writing is drawn to the strands of hair that fall down the child’s face; Kevin draws you in and dares you to see if it’s a painting or photograph.

check out his website

To view additional pieces from Kevin Peterson visit the Thinkspace Gallery website.

2014

Kevin Peterson 2014

2015

Kevin Peterson 2015

Kevin Peterson 2015

Kevin Peterson 2015

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Dabs Myla’s BEFORE & FURTHER Installation

ART - January 13, 2016

Before we left on our road trip of the Pacific North West, I had the chance to preview Dabs Myla’s Before & Further installation over at the Modernica Factory. As the preview was before the public opening and our ten-day trip, the photos and footage I took sat dormant on my computer until today! I’ve been wanting to share the colorful and mid-century cartoon dreamland Dabs Myla created for months.

Dabs Myla is an artist duo/ married couple who are originally from Melbourne, Australia and are as kind as their art is colorful. Seven years ago I met this duo when they walked into Thinkspace Gallery’s previous Silver Lake location for a portfolio review. We were excited by what the two of them were creating, so excited we almost forget to take their information, so as the intern I chased the two of them down the street to get their email. Fast forward and Dabs Myla’s fun illustrations and street art style can be seen in advertisements, music videos, and last year they transformed the set of the MTV Movie Awards. It’s so cool to see how these Aussies have taken the states by storm!

Here are a few detail shots from Before & Further in collaboration with Modernica. You can view a full house tour in the video below.

Dabs Myla Before and Further Flower Still Lifes

Dabs Myla Before and Further Hanging Lamps
Dabs Myla Before and Further Meditation Tent
Dabs Myla Modernica Room Divider and Chairs

Dabs Myla Before and Further book shelf

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VA : Red Dot Richmond

ADVENTURES, ART, TRAVEL - September 27, 2015

andrew hem richmond VA

Andrew Hem’s Mural

OCTOBER 16, 2014 | DAY 15 of #ONTHEROAD1014

In the gallery world when a piece of artwork is sold it is marked with a red dot. Knowing I would be visiting some major murals in Richmond, I had to bring a red dot with me! Our time in Richmond was short due to the reservation at Husk that night, a 6-hour drive from Richmond, VA to Charleston, SC. So Bowerbird and I woke up early, showered, grabbed a cup of coffee from a vending machine in our couch surfer’s apartment building and went mural hunting. Luckily, a handful of the murals from the Richmond Mural Project curated by Art Whino were right around the apartment. So we didn’t even have to move our car to find murals. We walked the streets of Richmond, putting the address of the ROA’s turtle tower in my gps as our initial destination. On the way to ROA we found the Angry Woebots mural. And the rest of the mural hunting was very similar, just stumbling on them while walking down this street and the next. It was really fun just discovering the murals. I was super excited to find Andrew Hem’s mural!

Time was ticking and our stomachs were grumbling. So after about an hour of searching for murals we looked on Yelp for a breakfast spot next to my bank. I had to finally get a cashiers check for the speeding ticket I received back in Colorado. We found a delicious spot in the downtown/business area of Richmond and fortunately a mail person was right in front of the building! I didn’t even have to look for a mailbox to send out the speeding ticket. I really appreciate the little things that make life magical.

Here are the murals I red dotted in Richmond, Virginia.

richmond (2)
Pixel Pancho Mural

Pixel Pancho Richamon VA
Pixel Pancho Mural

Roa Turtles Richamond VA
ROA Mural

Angry Woebots Richmond VA
Angry Woebots Mural

richmond (6)
I’m not sure who this is…but i love the mural! 

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JANM Hello Kitty Exhibit

ADVENTURES, ART - July 30, 2015

HK exhibit

From October to May the Japanese American National Museum had a Hello Kitty Exhibit. The history of Sanrio’s famed kitty with all her merchandised wonder was on display and a Hello Kitty inspired art exhibit.  A friend of mine and I went a few weeks before its closing and had every intention of posting this blog post in a timely manner. Pause for dramatic effect – looks at date of post –crickets – let’s move on. When I was growing up, Little Tokyo in Los Angeles was the equivalent of a ghost town. My Bachan (Japanese for Grandma) and Jichan (Japanese for Grandpa) would take me to Little Tokyo, I don’t even recall what we would do there, but I remember no one but the shop keepers and a few other Japanese people would be walking around.

Now Little Tokyo is a hip part of downtown LA. I credit Little Tokyo’s hipster interest to The Geffen MOCA Contemporary, ramen, and the onset of Japanese cultural obsession ever since Gwen Stefenai’s Love Angel Music Baby album. I’m still surprised how hard it is to find parking around there.  Even for the non-Hello Kitty obsessed the exhibit was fascinating. Every Hello Kitty merchandised object (practically) ever created was on display, including the HK personal massager. Here are my favorite finds from the show.

hk tomb

 

Hello Kitty has a life cycle and it includes a gravestone / urn / tombstone.

oil change hello kitty

Does you car need an oil change? Well you can do it with premieum Hello Kitty oil.

HK skates

I dream of adorable knee high socks with these gorgeous skates and a roller disco that will play
Anita Ward and Alicia Bridges all night long.

japan hello kitty

 

Apparently different parts of Japan have different Hello Kitty charms and it’s wonderful. Got to catch them all!!

Japan Charms

Japanese charms hot air balloon

apple height

Look how tall I am compared to Hello Kitty – what a shorty!

Hello Kitty Nosego

Hello Kitty piece by Nosego – who is currently showing at Thinkspace Gallery!

hello kitty art work

Seriously obessed with this piece by Michael Courville, all the vintage brooches and jewlery -its stunning.

alex and i

There was SO MUCH at the Hello Kitty exhibit, I just shared my favorite bits. I’m sorry for posting this now, instead of a week before the exhibit closed, incase my blog coverage really tipped the scales towards inspiring a person to see the show. I was at the first Hello Kitty art show  in 2009, helping to coordinate art sells. I’m just in awe and overwhelmed with joy at seeing how the Hello Kitty art show has grown and I’m so excited/proud to see what Jamie Rivadeneira, owner of JapanLA, has created and developed over the last 6 years.  My best friend used to work at Japan LA and introduced me to Jamie. Can’t lie when I say I feel a little cooler being on a first name basis with such a dynamic person.  Here is a shot of us a the first exhibit, you can see a piece by Colin Christian in the background.

hello kitty art show

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Festival of Arts & Pageant of the Masters

ADVENTURES, ART - July 4, 2015

Festival of Arts Laguna Beach

A summer staple for Laguna Beach is the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters festivities. Being a Southern California native, I’ve known about this beachside art event for years, but was never motivated enough to see what they were doing down in Orange County. I’m coming clean because my Los Angeles snobbery got the best of me, I’ve been missing out. I was invited to the Festival of the Arts/ Pageant of the Master media night in the beginning of June and both events officially open this Sunday, July 5th. I apologize for my delay is posting my thoughts, but it runs till August 29th.

First, let me clarify the difference between ‘Festival of Arts’ and ‘Pageant of the Masters’ because they aren’t the same thing. A ticket to the festival will not grant you access to the pageant. I was seriously confused by this, never being able to get the name straight, thinking these two separate events were one thing. Butchering this ridiculously long name into various configurations, Festival of Masters Art Pageant or Festival Pageants of the Masters Art.

Festival of Arts is a display of art from 140 Orange County based artists, along with various curated special events throughout the summer to celebrate the arts. Family oriented, there are youth art workshops, concerts on the green, and a family art day. For those without kids or who have hired a babysitter, every Thursday night there will be an Art, Jazz, Wine & Chocolate event from 5:30 – 7:30pm; three wines paired with three chocolates. The perfect setting to embrace a summer love.

studio shot from Pageant of the Masters
Pageant of the Masters is a theatrical production of tableaux vivants (living pictures). Volunteers are dressed and made up to re-create great artistic masterpieces on a grand stage; it’s quite the site to behold. On media night you get an all access pass. We peaked inside the workshops of where artists create the massive sets that act as a backdrop to the actors. Sculpting elements of the master pieces out of Styrofoam and playing with perspective on a life size scale. The makeup department is located beneath the stage with a room filled with wigs and a closet of well-organized stage cosmetics.

wall of makeup

pageant of the masters volunteer in makeup room

foa6

Artist create representations of people in their art work. At ‘Pageant of the Master’ now real life people were creating representations of those people. Heavy face paint exaggerated shadows and defined brow lines to convey the emotion the artist wanted to portray in their work. Makeup applied with sponges, on stage looks like brush strokes or a skillful palate knife. In the casting processes every inch of the volunteers are measured to see if they fit the part of a particular piece. Suddenly being a representation of a person is more important than being real, all in the name of art! We were treated to 3 tableaux vivants, I was astonished at how remarkable it is, the feeling you get watching a work of art become life-size and knowing that what you are seeing is real people frozen in place for ninety-seconds. Imagine having to sneeze.

betsy ross pageant of the masters

pageant of the masters coming home

The full ‘Pageant of Masters’ show is ninety minutes of living pictures, which if they are all 90 seconds a piece, means there are around 60 or so pieces shown. It’s probably closer to 40 pieces considering set up time between each piece, but I’m seriously curious to see the rest of the show. Especially with its fun them, The Pursuit of Happiness!

Even if you are a post-contemporary art fan like myself and are more familiar with the work of Mark Ryden versus Monet, Pageant of the Masters will impress and excite you. It’s real people dressed up as fine art master pieces! Get into it.

Please visit the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters website for all pricing and admission info.

two statues chilling

You can see more pictures from this night by searching #BBLagunaAdventure on Instagram and there is a bit of the show in my Laguna Adventure Vlog.

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Littletopia at Bob Baker’s Marionette Theater

ART - January 19, 2015

bob bakers marionette theater

Saturday night I faced my irrational fear of puppets in order to be a part of one of the greatest art parties thus far in 2015. A gathering of the best artist and gallery owners in the post-contemporary low brow art movement (aka Littletopia at the LA Art Show), coordinated by Greg Escalante, we gathered at Bob Baker Marionette Theater. My invite came from Thinkspace Gallery of course, and at first I turned down the invite because I had another party to go to that night. Using my other RSVP as a nice way to get out of seeing marionettes. It’s not that I think marionettes are lame or not a good form of entertainment, I actually get physically uncomfortable in the presence of animated dolls. Andrew from Thinkspace told me I’d really be missing out and to attend my other party late, and being one that actively avoids FOMO – I made myself go. Bob Baker’s Marionette Theater is on the outskirts of Downtown LA and a stone’s throw away from Echo Park. It had a string of Christmas lights and a garland tree set up out front, still strong in the holiday spirit. Walking in, the ‘party room’ was already packed with gallery owners from Roq La Rue, Red Truck Gallery, Gauntlet, Spoke Art,  and Copro. There was a lot of familiar faces, and those I didn’t know. A few of the artists I recognized included; Natalia Fabia, Lola, Adam Wallacavage, Travis Louis, Brian Viveros, and Casey Weldon. There was a handful of other artist there to, who if they wore a sticker of their work instead of a ‘hello my name is…’ I’d know them too.  Oh yeah Chet Zar was there as well, and everyone was merrily enjoying Two Boots pizza. I might just sound like a total name dropper right now, and that’s ok cause it’s exactly what I’m doing. Saving the best for last, the most honored guest, in a burgundy velvet suit – Mark Ryden was in attendance. The show that was put on was Bob Baker’s Nutcracker. It started with rainbow marionettes, who’s eyes blinked and when they started dancing in a circle I was thoroughly creeped out. I sat safely in the second row, with people protecting me from puppet interaction. The marionettes played with the audience, and Clara the puppet even jumped on Mark Ryden. A queen of candies and cake happily sat upon the lap of Casey Wheldon. They weren’t all nightmare inducing, sparkly sugar plum fairies and pretty flowers who danced the waltz provided a break from my constant humming anxiety. It was a fantastic night to be a part of, and the old 1950’s record with the voices, narration, and music of the show provided another level of delight. When the ‘Tea’ portion of the Nutcracker came on, and the oriental puppets with their incredibly non-pc costumes danced the floor, complete with “ching chong” dialogue; its offensiveness and nostalgia for another time added to the shows unique flavor.

rainbow marionettes

I never thought I’d say I was happy to have gone to a marionette show, but I’m absolutely thrilled to have seen this performance. I have this philosophy that if you’re not uncomfortable you aren’t growing. Facing fears, and pushing your boundaries are not easy. Sure it might just be an irrational fear of dolls and puppets. But I was about to let my fear keep me from experiencing a night surrounded by such creative and artistic talent. I would have really let myself down. I’m just thankful to Andrew for not letting me say no, it’s another reminder to keep saying yes to life!

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Love Letter to Thinkspace Gallery

ART - January 10, 2015

I was totally lost with no direction when I landed on Thinkspace's doorstep, and they raised me up like a stray kitten.

thinkspace gallery

Thinkspace is celebrating their 10 year anniversary tomorrow, January 10, with the opening of ‘La Familia’ and I felt this was the perfect time to share my undying love for this gallery.  Here is my love letter with a personal backstory…

I had studied for 7 years to be a professional actress, and in the fall of 2007 I decided it wasn’t the path for me. This realization came when an ex-boyfriend of mine was signing up for art classes in college, and I was jealous of him because I had to sign up for another theater class. It was painful to accept that I didn’t want to be an actress. I graduated from High School early for acting, it was all I knew. I didn’t know what I was supposed to do, except I loved art and writing.  I felt more comfortable at art openings, than I did at film festivals. So I got a gallery internship after not signing up for my regular acting class, and started working at 01 Gallery.

The first Thinkspace opening I ever went to was Sarah Joncas and Camilla d’Errico in January 2008. This was a month after I decided to no longer pursue acting. As I drove away from the show, staring at the illuminated painted install shining out from the front window, I told my friend, “that’s the kind of gallery I want to be a part of.” I started my internship with 01 Gallery the following week, and was with them for 7 months before I knew it was time to move on. It was a Thursday when I sent out my resume to galleries around Los Angeles looking for a new internship; Monkey King, Gallery 1988, CoproNason to name a few. When it came down to Thinkspace, my dream gallery, I decided to call them instead. I think a part of me figured getting rejected immediately from them, would be easier than the torture of waiting for an email response.

thinkspace window camilla d'errico

LC, one of the owners of Thinkspace, picked up the phone and I nervously asked if they were looking for interns. He said he was looking for an assistant and if I could come in that day. I agreed, and jumped in the shower to be a presentable human being. I remember it wasn’t a convenient time for me, but when your dream gallery ask you to come in, you don’t say no.  We chatted, and by the end of the conversation LC told me he was going on a tour for a month, but when he got back we’d get started. I quit my internship with 01 Gallery, and a month later returned to Thinkspace to get started as LC’s assistant. 2 years after being with Thinkspace, LC shared with me that he hadn’t officially hired me that fateful Thursday afternoon, but figured “hey this girl keeps showing up, and working hard…why continue the search.”  For a moment I was embarrassed by my brazen assumption I had been chosen to be an intern, but then that assumption secured me a position with my dream gallery.

thinkspace silverlake

Now 7 years later, I’m no longer a Thinkspace intern, but occasionally a gallery assistant and solid family member. The title ‘La Familia’ of Thinkspace’s 10 year anniversary is so on point, as this gallery really developed a community and family in the ten years it’s been around. I came in a little late, but over the last 7 years I see familiar faces and seen artist grow from small pieces in a group show to practically selling out an entire large room (looking at you Jacub Gagnon). This gallery has helped to shine a spotlight on emerging artist and foster an environment for them to flourish.  I’m not an artist, but at one point in time I was curating art shows and it’s solely due to the conversations I had at Thinkspace. Man I remember the day Audrey Kawasaki said I could do anything I put my mind to, I had the energy for it. I might have been buzzed on beer, but I swear she said it!

familiar faces

I love my blood family, but my art family has really shaped who I am today. I was raised to be incredibly cautious and rational. To not just look before I jump, but to inspect the ground and make sure I have the right permits. To consider what the tax situation is going to be like and will I need insurance. For me, growing up with that kind of pressure paralyzed me from doing anything. It was overwhelming to just think about possibly trying something new, and doing something on my own. LC taught me to just do it. He encouraged me to curate my first art show, along with the other owners Shawn and Andrew. They were incredibly supportive, and always gave me a blast in the Sour Harvest newsletter.  Every Thursday for 3 years, LC listened to my romantic woes while I packaged art, spackled holes, and leveled paintings.  He gave me advice on guys, while we searched for artist to invite to Cannibal Flower. I’d share an idea with him while eating lunch; expressing how I wanted to interview artist with silly questions like ‘what’s your spirit animal’, and he’d just say – well do it. That’s how My Favorite MAOI came to be, and although I’ve moved away from that blog, it taught me a lot as well.  Some of the artist I had interviewed or worked with in my early art shows are now represented by Thinkspace, like Glenn Arthur and Kevin Peterson. What can I say, I think I have a good eye!

glenn arthur 2009

Picture from the show Black Market Sugar I curated at The Lab in Costa Mesa

Thinkspace was the catalyst in my life to a happier, more confident, and fulfilling path. LC, Valentine, Shawn and Andrew will stand in my future wedding photos like the important family members they are. If a terrible Si-Fi movie of my life was to be written and the plot was to ruin my existence, all the villain would have had to do was distract LC and prevent him from picking up my call that Thursday afternoon. I was totally lost with no direction when I landed on Thinkspace’s doorstep, and they raised me up like a stray kitten. I’ve grown and changed so much within the last seven years, and I truly attribute a lot of that positive growth to the people at Thinkspace.

I commend you if your attention span actually read my entire love letter. I could write a 1000 more words about how amazing this gallery is and the ways it has influenced my life, but then I’d really just have my heart bleeding all over this post.  ‘La Familia’ opens tomorrow and it’s going to be crazy, and amazing!

I love my crazy amazing art family.

Xoxo, Bekka

family portrait

sorry David Cooley (he’s being covered by Valentine)

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ART + MUSIC : El Jaleo with Iron and Wine

ART, LISTEN - November 15, 2014

I’ve been reading An Object of Beauty and this painting “El Jaleo” by John Singer Sargent (1882) is shown in the book. Immediately the image reminded my of the “Boy with a Coin” by Iron & Wine music video.  Now I will introduce this beautiful combination to my readers, enjoy.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHw7gdJ14uQ&w=560&h=315]

El Jaleo John Singer Sargent  Painting

 

 

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OKC : Birth of a Dream

ADVENTURES, ART, TRAVEL - October 9, 2014

womb gallery roadtrip

The saying, if you knew how powerful your thoughts are you’d never have a bad one, really is the best intro into what I’m about to share. Wayne Coyne, singer of Flaming Lips, lives in Oklahoma City and has a reputation for being very nice, giving, and open. A king of the freaks, he welcomes people, if you can find him. Knowing his gallery, Womb Gallery was located in Oklahoma City, Bowerbird and I decided on a whim to just see if we knocked on the door possibly we would be able to stay at the compound.  Unfortunately the freak storm in Oklahoma, caused us to pull off the road 16 miles from the gallery and all my hopes of running into Wayne washed away.

The next morning we went to the gallery, and as Womb is known to have fluctuating hours, I assumed we’d only be able to take pictures on the outside and it would put us 10 minutes behind schedule max. We also had the diamond crater of Arkansas on our list of things to do that day. Instead Womb Gallery turned into nearly an hour excursion and it was better than we could have imagined, we found a different kind of diamond that day.

Driving up to the gallery, there was a group of men taking down an installation of a nose on the outside of the building. I could tell the gallery probably wasn’t open, but I wasn’t going to let it stop me from asking. Approaching the gallery manager, we asked if it was open and after explaining we we’re on a road trip from California and wouldn’t be able to swing back for the show, Jake was very kind and offered to give us a tour. Their show Acid Off by artist Isis Fisher opens this weekend, October 11, and half the space was incomplete but the concepts mind blowing.

Glitter floors, fluorescent walls, textural and scent stimulating sculptures; the entire space awakens a creative spark within. Pushing norms, and mixing the absurd with post-modern fine art.  Jake and I geeked out on art, discussing past exhibits with Dalek and Bigfoot. I even shared with him an artist I had worked with before, Alex Chiu that I feel would fit in the gallery perfectly.

***photos and topics after the jump are graphic in nature, Bowerbird’s mom who is a loyal reader will most likely not enjoy the following – so you’ve been warned <3 ***

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FLASHBACK FRIDAY : Artist Glenn Arthur

ART, INTERVIEWS - August 15, 2014

 

First published on My Favorite MAOI – 6/5/2009

Name: Glenn Arthur
Nickname: Glenny
Sign: Aquarius

Favorite:
Ice Cream: Strawberry
Book: The kind I can color in.
Color: Black (but only until they come out with something darker)

Q1. What animal is your spirit guide?
A1.Not sure. I hope it’s a hummingbird…and if it’s not then I’ll just lie and say it is 😉

Q2. If you had a parrot what would you teach it to say?
A2.”Get off my lawn!”

Q3. What superhero would you make your sidekick?
A3.Wonder Woman for sure. But only if i get to fly the invisible jet!

Q4. What do you admire in a person?
A4.Intelligent vulgarity.

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