Monday, March 31, 2008

How To Be a Modern Art Insider and Get the Paintings You Want

Kirsten Ulve

Feeling left out and lonely? Admiring your buddy's beautiful (and valuable!) art collection and wondering how you can get one of your very own? Tired of imbibing catering truck-sized amounts of cheap wine and cheese and listening to pretentious art school students drone on and on about metaphors of distopia and current memes in modern art movements (what the hell is meme anyway? Really, are you sure?) with nothing on your wall to show for it? Well PopDrawer is here to change all that and teach you how to get the art that you want in five easy tips.

1) Subscribe to your favorite artists' websites and check them often. You can't buy anything from an artist unless you know that she/he will soon have work for sale. You need to keep abreast of your faves' upcoming shows before you can do anything else. In addition, sometimes an artists sells a piece or two from their website.

2) Contact the galleries where your artists will be showing. Get on their mailing lists. Email the email contact and ask them to be put on the artist's waiting list. Let them know that you are a serious buyer, a fan of that artist's work, and you would like a chance to buy a piece.

3) Buy from your favorite galleries. Typically a gallery has a personality, an aesthetic. If you like the work of one artist they show, you are likely to like the work of other artists on their roster. So go to the openings, troll the websites, and look for an unsold piece that you like. Do not assume that the pieces that go first are always the best pieces. Trust your own taste. And know that often a buyer falls out after they have already committed, leaving the gallery with a piece it must resell. Those works are often found somewhere on the website. Once you purchase a piece from a gallery, you will be a VIP to that gallery, and your request to be on the waiting list of your favorite artists will be given much more weight.

4) Get to know your favorite artists!. They usually show up to their opening night soirees. They are often the ones standing in the corner, surrounded by groupies, uncomfortable at the attention. But who cares! They are counting on you, their fans, to support them. Approach them. Tell them how much you like their work. If everything has already been sold, ask them if they have any unsold pieces available or if they have a waiting list. Chances are that they will answer you! And then follow up with an email.

5) Go to the private preview, not the public opening. If there's a preview, that's when the remaining available pieces will be sold. You need to be there, right when it starts. But how, PopDrawer, can a regular Joe or Jenny like me get into the private preview, you may ask? Well, you need to be resourceful and clever and bold. Here's what you need to do. Ready? Ask. That's right. Ask. Call the gallery and try this out. "Um, hi, uh... is there a private preview for the new Gary Baseman show? Could I get an invite? Really, just show up? I'll be there!" Good thing you're resourceful, clever and bold. You just got yourself in line to buy a rare and hard to attain Gary Baseman original.

Good luck and good hunting!!

P.S. The images in this email are pieces PopDrawer acquired using some of these very methods!!

Miles Thompson

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Ryan McLennan -- From Fur to Bone


Next Saturday, April 5, a dark and fascinating new show by Ryan McLennan opens at Kinsey/DesForges gallery in Culver City, CA. Titled From Fur to Bone, the show contains pieces that hearken back to the Naturalist paintings of the 19th century, but altered to depict slightly fantastical elements (a topiary bear, for instance) to draw attention to environmental issues.

From the press release: "...inspired by many hours spent in the nearby Blue Ridge Mountains, this VCU grad and Virginia native has undertaken an in-depth inquiry into the evolution and displacement of North America wildlife, and his understanding of changing patterns in their behavior, incurred as a direct result of changes and destruction to their natural habitats..."

The show opens next Saturday, so if you want a piece, contact Kinsey/Desforges now to get on the waiting list.


From Fur to Bone

Ryan McLennan

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Alert! New Cotton Monsters Available NOW!!!


A new batch of Jennifer Strunge's wonderful hand-made cotton monsters are available NOW and they won't last long. Typically they sell out within a few hours. Luckily, this time Ms. Strunge is going to be posting a few new ones periodically over a short period of time, so if they're gone currently, you can keep[ checking back and you may get luckily enough to adopt one of these jolie laid monstrosities.

(Jolie-Laid translation: French for beautiful-ugly. Refers to a person or thing that is not traditionally beautiful, even ugly, but somehow appeals to our aesthetic sense. Examples -- Sandra Bernhard, Sandra Oh, Sandra Tsing Loh -- do you see a pattern here?)

Anyway, she has temporarily moved the store to the Etsy store. Get 'em while you can!!!


New Cotton Monsters Etsy Store

Cotton Monsters Site

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Little People - A Tiny Street Art Project


This from Dwell Magazine:

"Using model train figurines and miniature props, Slinkachu, an anonymous street artist, reappropriates banal elements of London's streetscapes to create humorous installations with biting social satire."

What more can we say, except that Slinkachu's fantastic photos are available for sale in limited editions on his/her (?) website. The price is about 150 British Pounds, or approximately $300.



Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Who Needs Groceries Alert -- Jeff Soto Giclee!!


Here at PopDrawer (is there really a "here" in the online ether?), we have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to wax rhapsodic about one of our fave artists, the great and powerful Jeff Soto. From the minute we laid eyes on his work, we have been over the moon for his fantastical images of cacti, robots, flying words and other surreal subjects all done in an amazing classical, painterly style. In our opinion, he is one of the (deservedly) fastest rising stars in the art world today.

So here is what we were waiting for -- a new giclee! Titled "War Clouds," the image was recently part of "Storm Clouds" show in NYC last year (David Choe owns the original). The print is 18" x 12" (the size of the original) and available in a limited edition of 50, signed and numbered, for just $250. Get yours now, because it is sure to sell out.


Jeff Soto's website

"War Clouds"

Monday, March 24, 2008

We're back! In the Year of the Rat...


Dan-ah Kim

PopDrawer has been out of commission for a couple of weeks, but we're back, and want to blog about a show that opened in our absence. GR2 (an outlet of Giant Robot), is currently hosting a show entitled "The Year of the Rat" at their LA outpost, and there are still some affordable works available. The show runs through April 16th and is a group art show celebrating year 4706 on the lunar calendar. Pieces include oils, pencils, prints, sculpture, and other media all dedicated to the first sign on the Chinese zodiac cycle. Contributors include, among other, Gary Baseman, Deth P. Sun, Dan-ah Kim, Martin Cendreda, and a host of other great artists. Go down to Sawtelle to check it out, or to this link if you can't make it in person.


Andrew Holder


Stephanie Leung

The Year of the Rat

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Ana Bagayan at BSFA


We at PopDrawer apologize for our lack of regular postings these past two weeks. We’ve been busy busy busy. And so has the art world we love to follow. This was a big big weekend for new openings, and we’ll try throughout this week to cover a few of them. Starting today with rising star Ana Bagayan. We’ve been to a few of her openings now, and her new work never ceases to thrill us. She has moved quickly from Art Center student to group show participant to showing solo. Her newest show, titled “Mother Nature” opened last night at the Billy Shire Fine Arts Gallery in Culver City, California.

According to the press release, “[Ana Bagayan] uses a less saturated palette filled with animals in natural habitats, attempting to recall feelings of brooding more so than morbidity. Ana Bagayan was born in the capital of Armenia; Yerevan, and moved to the United States when she was six years old. In Burbank, California, she frolicked amongst tall grasses and dancing bears until she entered Art Center of Design in Pasadena where she earned her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Illustration. Ana's work has been received internationally and has been featured in such publications as Rolling Stone, Spin and GQ.”

The new works range in price from $750 to $7500, and there are still a few pieces available. Meanwhile, on a tighter budget you can purchase a limited edition giclee print of her work "Butterfly House" at the store at her site for only $150.


Ana Bagayan

"Mother Nature" at BSFA

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Kristen Schiele - First Solo Show at Sloan Fine Art


Wednesday March 12th marks the opening of the first solo exhibition at the excellent Sloan Fine Art gallery in NYC. The show, entitled "My Dream is Yours" is described this way: The all-female cast of Kristen Schiele's new paintings and collages exist in a disjointed, cinematic dreamscape. Influenced by the highly stylized and macabre sensibility of the Italian filmmaker Dario Argento, these heroines confront the viewer directly as they define a new strategy of power in environments that traditionally serve only to circumscribe their identity."

See the Sloan Fine Art website for more!


Kristen Schiele
Sloan Fine Art

Sunday, March 9, 2008

All the ladies in the house...


All-women group shows seem to be all the rage lately. It's a decent way to bring more notice to female artists, but we here at PopDrawer hope that we see fewer and fewer gender-based shows in the future and more and more shows that have nothing to do with gender and simply include these amazing artists who happen to be women. Having said that, the new show at Project:Gallery in Culver City, California is a great collection of five artists who happen to be women: Jen Corace, Katy Horan, Rebecca Artemisa Urias, Allison Cole, and Dan-Ah Kim. The show is called Kaleidoscope, and opened this weekend. According to the press release, "Each artist represents a whimsical and feminine style, that truly tells a greater story than at first glance." Go to the press release for more info on each artist. These very affordable pieces are going from below $100 to just above $1000. Head to the preview to take a look.


Kaleidoscope at Project:Gallery

Kaleidoscope Store

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Alex Prager, Amazing Photographer


This weekend, funky streetwear company WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy (WeSC) held its first art show in Santa Monica at the Robert Berman Gallery. WeSC chose photographer Alex Prager to curate the show, which included 10 artists such as Prager herself and Chad Robertson. As always, Prager's new work blew us away at PopDrawer.

Alex Prager, who has an ongoing solo show at the Michael Hoppen Gallery in London entitled Big Valley, is a Los Angeles native. According to the Big Valley press release, "Born in Los Angeles, Prager has received no formal education since 8th grade, spending time between Los Angeles, Florida and Lucerne, Switzerland. A self-taught photographer, Prager was originally inspired by stumbling upon a William Eggleston exhibition at the Getty Museum... Since taking up photography at the age of 20 her photographs have been included in 13 exhibitions including a recent solo show at Robert Berman Gallery and she has shot for numerous publications include i-D, Flaunt, Complex, Elle Japan, MOJO and Rolling Stone."

The release also states that "Prager photographs her female subjects in a style reminiscent of the great mid 20th Century film directors such as Alfred Hitchcock and Douglas Sirk." However, for some reason, we are more reminded of late 60s, early 70s Los Angeles, and think of glam housewives over movie stars. When we look at her photos, what comes to our minds is Joan Didion's amazing essay on housewife culture in Southern California circa 1970, "Lifestyles in the Golden Land" from her collection Slouching Towards Bethlehem. We apologize for sounding pedantic, but if you haven't read it, YOU SHOULD. And if you haven't checked out Alex Prager, you MOST DEFINITELY should.



Alex Prager

Monday, March 3, 2008

Who Needs Groceries Alert - KidRobot Sale!


In case you have not heard, KidRobot is having a warehouse sale, offering 50%-80% off! We at PopDrawer LOVE sales, and this is one we won't miss. All the details in the image above. Enjoy!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

UPDATE -- New Baseman Print


The new Gary Baseman print, "Celeste", is NOW AVAILABLE. And check out this beauty (the print, not the model). The print is a 24 layer serigraph created with The Decoder Ring over 6 days in Austin, Texas. Each print is on Coventry Rag heavyweight archival paper. Signed, numbered and embossed.

This is an edition of 100 with 80 available for purchase. The first 50 are $250 plus shipping. The next 15 will be $275 and the final 15 will be $300.

Gary told us "I am actually trying to do the print like a painting, in the sense, I am creating the next color right after the last color was laid done. There should be over 20 colors but I want it to look like there is only 2."

Get yours while you can!

"Celeste" print by Gary Baseman