Thursday, October 16, 2014

The October Venice ArtBlock - Artists In Their Natural Habitat

I dig the Venice ArtBlock. It's free. It's for everyone. It's what Venice is all about. The October session was Sunday, another perfectly Indian Summer day, exactly made for strolling about town and snooping around the studios where our local artists work, and in some cases, live.

For this edition, I sadly had very little time, as I was all over the place last weekend, so I had to have a solid game plan. As it's always hard to see everything, no matter how leisurely your day is, I tried to hit up things I didn't see the last time around.

I began with a visit to my dear friend Amy Kaps over on Electric Avenue. She is a true artist, both in her projects and by how she lives her life. Her mission statement of sorts reads, "An interdisciplinary artist with a predilection for the abstract and surrealistic emphasizing the human form and condition."

That's right. She recently did a performance art piece where she was bound up in neon green streamer-like fabric that unraveled as she traversed Chung King Road in Chinatown, where she wound up back at the gallery nude. Kaps has courage.

She has a whole black and white stripe piece that she does, and has also created some gorgeous art clothing that you would love to wear, but they're just so precious they have to be hung on display. We had a lovely time (another day of sipping champagne!) chatting and just discussing art. What a treat.

Onward to the Lantern House on Milwood, owned by another dear, Scott Mayer.

His gorgeous home is famous for all the lanterns hung in his trees, but it's even cooler to enter the gardens and bungalows that make up his compound, with all the millions of beautiful and interesting things to look at.

Mayer has a lot of his own art and collections of curios to look at, but on this Sunday he also hosted the artists Aurelia Dumont, Leonardo Ibanez and Jens Lucking.

All were displayed in and around Mayer's house and gardens, and you really almost couldn't handle how great it all was.

On we went up California, where we stopped in to see and meet Emily Van Horn and Mardi De Veuve (another day of Veuve!) Alexis in her great, airy studio. The art was excellent, and they also served some delicious cucumbery spa water that was most welcome by that stage of the bike ride (thank you!).

As my clock was ticking, I sped over to the nucleus of the ArtBlock over on Vernon and Sunset Avenues. I've been to those studios many times, but there's always something new, and always good friends and great art to see.

I checked out the music at Attaway's studio, where it's always the most fun during Art Block.

They had a grill going right out on the sidewalk, giving it all that neighborhood bbq feeling, and there was art everywhere you looked.

I walked through the mobile Gypsy Trails Gallery, whose concept I love, and they always have cool works on display, this time by Hayley Colston.

I stopped in at the Alberto and Ara Bevacqua studio, where I also got to see our friend, Ellwood Risk, showing off his extra-cool pieces. He even gave me a poster, that I love.

I ran through The Distillery Building on Vernon and saw some great stuff ...

... especially from MB Boissonnault, Rachel Bujalski, Taylor Barnes, Cari Lee and the always awesome to visit studio of Jim Budman, but was in such a mad rush that I didn't really get to get to know it or discuss it with anyone ... as we were about to go make some art of our own!

That's again, what it's all about. Thank goodness we live in such a supportive artistic community, where inspiration and encouragement is yours every single day.

You merely have to open your eyes. The opening of your heart and mind will soon follow. Go!

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