We couldn’t resist. PINNING IS ADDICTIVE! Before UGallery is shipped off to Pinners Anonymous, we decided to give all our UGal pals a pinning project to tackle. Have fun with it. We can’t wait to see what you decide to pin.
If you need help getting started, check out my sample board! Designs I forgot about resurfaced in response to Royal Jarmon’s Positive Allergies II! Something as simple as a Pinterest board with 6 pins can show the power of art. For example, Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s alphabet is obscure, but fits so well with this painting. Can you imagine this painting hanging in Adolf Loos’s Villa Müller? Bold, I know. That is what I love about art. I can make daring connections without worrying about who agrees. So go ahead. Create a board. And pin away.
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Who may enter: Contest is open to all legal residents of the United States and the District of Columbia except those who reside in U.S. territories.
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Who are the AAF 12? They are the dozen artists joining us at the Affordable Art Fair 2012.
On the eleventh day leading up to AAF, my UGal gave to me: Alaina Sullivan
1. How long have you been in New York City? Just over a year.
2. Have you been in an art show before? I’ve been several smaller shows, but nothing of this magnitude nor in NYC, so I’m pretty pumped.
3. Have you shown at AAF in previous years? Nope, but I worked at it last year so it will be very cool to experience it from the other side.
4. Do you plan on attending AAF? Definitely — it’s a great way for a young artist to get inspired and see the other work being produced by fellow contemporaries.
5. How many pieces do you have going to the fair? Three sizable oil paintings — still have to figure out how to get them to Midtown!
6. What is one word to describe your art? Fluid.
7. What piece of art will be the hardest to part with if it is sold? Deep. It’s my newest and the second I’ve done in that dark palette because I find it so interesting. It also looks great in my apartment right now…
8. What’s your favorite NYC museum? The Guggenheim.
9. Do you have a favorite NYC restaurant?That’s an extremely difficult question to answer, especially for someone whose other foot is in the food industry, but I’ve had some really memorable meals at Blue Hill NYC, Marc Forgione, and Morimoto.
10. Upper East Side or Financial District? Harlem.
11. What’s your favorite NYC tourist destination? The High Line, or Union Square Greenmarket
12. Manhattan or Brooklyn? Tough call — I live in Manhattan, but love the Brooklyn vibe as well.
Browse the Affordable Art Fair 2012 collection and you can snag Alaina Sullivan’s water wonders before they are picked up at the fair.
We are tackling a doozy of a topic today: abstract art! This sort of thing requires more than just table talk! We recruited Jenny Gray, UGallery’s abstract aficionado, to help us define this artistic style. We got right to the point…
Me: What is abstract art?
Jenny Gray: Non representational, not trying to clearly reproduce the true look of an object or scene. Even though you might recognize the object, the artist was adding or subtracting and not trying to truly represent what the eye sees.
Jenny Gray’s paintings are a perfect example of adding and subtracting. Check out her painting Test Strip above. Even though her abstractions have recognizable shapes, her paintings are more than meets the eye. What Jenny says reiterates what Pablo Picasso said, ”There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality.” So I asked Jenny and the team what they thought about Picasso’s definition.
Me: Do you agree with Pablo Picasso?
Jenny Gray: I agree that I usually start with something, it might be an emotion, a memory or a landscape. But I am not sure that is true for all artists and I don’t think you have to remove all traces of reality.
Samantha: Abstract art is really difficult to define. I agree with Picasso in the sense that every artist has to begin with something, and then abstract upon it. I think that constitutes part of the definition of abstract art.
Me: What are the important things to know about abstract art?
Jenny Gray: When looking at abstract art, go with your gut. Try to pick up on the emotions that you might feel from it. Trying to figure out “what it is” can be fun, but try to feel it, too. I like my paintings to keep giving more information the more you look at them. There are layers of marks and meaning.
No wonder abstract art is so popular. It’s like the gift that keeps on giving! And it takes a leap of courage and commitment to contemplate it. If you like abstract art, you are not alone:
Annie: I feel that abstract art is one of the most unique forms of art as it taps into an individual’s soul and can be transcribed in an infinite number of ways.
Stephen: Abstract art really allows the viewer’s imagination to be set free. Many abstract works can derive different meanings for each individual. It’s fun to view and discuss various works.
Maybe we should worry less about defining abstract art and just feel it! I’m going with Alex on the final “definition” of abstract art.
Alex:Drips, scribbles, strokes, spills, lines, blobs, splotches, shapes, expression, meditation, personal interpretation, and a few other things.
Noteworthy Abstract Artists:
Annie is thinking hard with Rodin.
Annie is awesome. That’s why we chose her to be our Director of Sales.
Two years ago, Annie moved to New York from Los Angeles to further her art career. Like many on the Ugallery team, she fell in love with art history in high school. She tried economics, but we all know where that leads. She returned again and again to art history (aren’t we thankful for it!) and graduated from University of California, Riverside with a B.A. in Art History and a minor in Anthropology.
She loves to travel. She has been to Morocco, Monaco, Barcelona, Japan, and St. Tropez just to name a few. When I asked her where she liked visiting the most, she responded, “Barcelona. Gaudi’s buildings were amazing.” SOLD!
Feel free to send her an email (that’s firstname.lastname@example.org) and welcome her to the team! We are so glad to be expanding our New York office and to have someone like Annie as a sales liaison between designers and consultants. Here is her quirky questionnaire.
Favorite burrito joint: King Taco
Favorite cartoon character: Peter, Family Guy
Best museum: Musee d’Orsay
Reading right now: 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
Favorite color: Yellow
Breakfast of choice: Bagel & lox
Drink of choice: Coconut water
Dream vacation: S. America & Africa
Star Wars character of choice: Boba Fett!
Stolen artwork of choice: Any work by Kandinsky or Dali
Kevin Brewerton was born in England and lives in Los Angeles. He is a five-time World Kickboxing Champion who was so prolific that Martial Arts Illustrated wrote: “If anyone in the sport of Karate hasn’t heard of Kevin Brewerton, then they must have been in a coma for the last ten years. If the sport of kickboxing karate was a sleeping giant, then it was Brewerton who came along and woke it up.” Kevin has since turned his energies towards abstract art. His paintings are grand, elegantly primitive odes to athletic figures with a link to Kevin’s own personal story and style. Read this interview for more on Kevin’s life as a martial and abstract artist:
Kevin in fighting times!
What’s your earliest art memory?
I remember the art teacher in my 6th grade school pulling out a plank of wood and threatening to beat us with it if we fool around in his classroom. He then told us that “Black is not a color.”
How did you get involved with art?
I was always an artist. Martial arts is art. But when i came to L.A. to study acting I found a mentor named Milton Katselas and he opened the door to art for me.
Kickboxing and fighting’s influence on your work is quite apparent. Are you the model for the forms in your work?
A lot of my abstract boxers are some type of self portrait. They are some part of me. All of my art is some part of me, it has to be.
That said, not all of the paintings I do are about stepping into a ring. My art should be able to take you anywhere. It should be everything. It doesn’t have to be significant. It can be fun or maybe you can fall in love.
How would you describe your work?
I don’t like to be put in a box. I think that an artist is free to create in any medium that he/she wants. However, I find myself drawn a lot to Abstract Expressionist type work. I find it very immediate and spontaneous. There’s a power in that - the expression is caught in that moment in time, forever.
Do you have a concept before you start a painting?
Sometimes I have an idea of what I’m after, but the idea in my head often changes as I work. You have to follow your impulses and be willing to discover something new and fresh - to shock yourself in some way or do something that you never envisioned.
Pollock used to say, “each painting has a life of it’s own.” A lot of my abstract boxers are painted on wood. This gives it an unpredictable quality because of the grain, which reminds me of facing an opponent. I enjoy solving the problems of painting while creating something unique. Usually, I find myself at a roadblock whenever I’m trying to be too careful, trying not to make a mistake. When I’m willing to take bigger and bolder risks in my work that’s when I discover something. It was the same way when I was fighting. When I learned how to have fun, and take risks I flourished and it became exciting and I was exciting. That’s how I won the world, five times over. It’s not different in my painting.
You mention Franz Klein. What is it you like about him?
I love his simplicity and yet there is a whole world in his work. It looks as if he took about three minutes to paint some of his compositions but they are thoughtfully executed. There is so much tension in the black and white, and the structures are architectural. In The Ballantine, if you look closely enough the whole thing looks as if it’s about to topple off the canvas. It’s as if the whole structure is somehow holding itself together. There’s a man in there who knows what it feels like to have to hold on.
How did you get into kickboxing? Do you still compete?
I was fired up after seeing Bruce Lee for the first time, and I found a martial arts school in a coal mining town in northern England.
High-level sports and visual arts don’t overlap often. Why do you think that is? Why does the combination work so well for you?
Most elite athletes are taught to be outward propelling - that is to not be vulnerable and to be strong in all areas. This sometimes does not leave any room for the artist to emerge. It works well for me because I believe that I am fortunate enough to have been taught how to cultivate my skills as an artist.
Through art I have also learned that vulnerability is a strength. When you fight you learn to put up walls so no one can get to you. In my art I’m trying to pull all of those walls down and be vulnerable, show my heart and be willing to fail. That is an artist - someone who shows their heart, all colors. I used to think that it would be the greatest to thing to have an unbeaten record as a fighter. Now I think that I pity any fighter who has never lost. There is so much to learn, losing makes you better, gives you more humanity. I want to show that in my art.
What advice would you offer to other emerging artists?
To see more of Kevin’s paintings, visit his Ugallery portfolio.
Greetings Art Lovers!
Paperwork is about bringing sustainable, affordable art to the people. We’ve gathered some of our finest works and printed them in limited editions that you can take home for as little as $20. All of our archival pigment prints are produced on the world’s first eco-friendly fine art paper - a smooth, natural white bamboo paper. Each piece is shipped with information about the artwork as well as a certificate of authenticity that is numbered and signed by the artist.
Every Tuesday, we release two new Paperwork pieces. All you have to do is pick a size and within seven business days artwork will appear at your doorstep. Simple as that!
Make sure that you never miss out on an edition by signing up for a weekly newsletter (top right corner of the page) that discloses each print 10 minutes before it hits the site.
On behalf of the Ugallery team, we hope you enjoy Paperwork and thank you for being a part of the Ugallery community!
Apartment Therapy has done it again! The DIY decor site gathered together the top trends for filling an empty space over a sofa. Here are their art suggestions with some Ugallery accompaniments:
When a sofa’s up against a wall, a big statement piece is usually a safe bet. It helps to anchor the couch and can even make a small space feel larger.
A blown-up photograph is an easy way to personalize your room and, it can be an inexpensive option.
A sculptural wall piece adds drama. Be wary of how heavy the work is if you live in earthquake country!
A large-scale painting can bring intense color into a room. If you really want to ramp up the scale, hang a couple of large pieces together.
Our first interview of the blog features Ugallery’s Gallery Director Alex Farkas on fun times in the art world, insider collecting advice, and most importantly, nudity in art.
Q: You have been working as Gallery Director at Ugallery.com for three years, how do you keep work interesting?
A: There are many fun parts to my job. At the top of the list is working as one of the curators for the gallery. Each day, I spend a few hours reviewing and talking about the new art submissions. We get into some very interesting discussions, and I love being the first to see what we exhibit. Quite dangerous on the pocketbook though! I also really enjoy planning and working at the art fairs we participate in and the events we host. Selecting the art for each particular show is an amazing process. Our team begins with a simple theme and a pile of jpgs, and by opening night, we have brought together the work of artists from across the country. And once the art is on the walls, it’s great fun to talk with artists and collectors. I could talk your ear off about art.
Q: Do you have a favorite piece of art on the site?
A: My favorites so far are all hanging on my walls. One of the first lessons I learned was that if you love a piece of art, buy it while you still can because it might not be there tomorrow.
Q: Here is the age-old question, where is the line between naked and nude in art?
A: I am going to answer your question with a question. Would you feel comfortable having grandma over for dinner with that [nude/naked] painting on the wall? One of my observations is that nudity in art deals with form and beauty while nakedness represents sexuality.
Q: What is your favorite nude painting?
A: One of my favorites, and quite appropriate for our discussion of naked versus nude, is Manet’s Olympia. The painting references a long list of classical nudes, but is decidedly naked. I love controversial art!
Q: Thanks for answering my questions, I just have one more… which Ugallery artist is going to be the next big thing?
A: We are working towards a cultural revolution. It is my goal that the group of artists we represent will become internationally recognized, both individually and as a whole.