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Home BLOGS Guest Blog A Week with Jeff Soto - Day 6

A Week with Jeff Soto - Day 6

Written by Jeff Soto   
Thursday, 09 March 2006 12:02
"After seeing all that art last night the only thing I could think of today was to go see more art! This was the last day to catch the David Choe show at Kantor Gallery, plus we wanted to see Neckface at New Image Art and the new show at JUNC."

Jeff Soto- Day 6 of 7

After seeing all that art last night the only thing I could think of today was to go see more art! This was the last day to catch the David Choe show at Kantor Gallery, plus we wanted to see Neckface at New Image Art and the new show at JUNC. Jennifer and I hopped in the car and headed out to L.A.

L.A. was nice and smoggy as usual.

A mural on the 101. These big murals were commissioned when the olympics were here in ‘84. I grew up looking at these and they always held a special little part in my heart. They were untouched until all the L.A. bombers started going over them in the mid 90’s.I always thought was pretty jacked up, wasn’t there some rule about not going over anything you couldn’t burn? Shame on those writers, you guys suck! It looks like they’re restoring/repainting them which is just awesome. Hopefully this time with heavy industrial strength graffiti proof coating.

Here’s some pictures from Kantor Gallery on Melrose. I wanted to see David Choe’s solo show before it was taken down. People seem to either love him or hate him, he’s a controversial guy. All I know is I love his work, his books are some of the finest reading around, and every time I’ve talked with him he’s just super down to eartth and polite. This show did not dissapoint. At first I expected more chaos from David, but upon looking it was there, just nicely contained in his paintings. This was a large body of work following a theme, I can see how it relates to some of the crazier things that have happened to him recently, including his time in prison- if you happen to run into David ask to see the drawings he made in jail. Some of the coolest drawings I’ve seen. He also had some great homemade toys in this show. here’s pictures:

Right off of Melrose behind Kantor gallery is a big graffiti wall that is redone occasionally. I liked some of it but I’m getting sick of these productions with themes. Maybe if the theme had something to actually do with graffiti it would be nice but c’mon, this piece has a western theme? Huh??

Melrose used to be a mecca of graffiti when the old CBS and AWR ran things, I’m talking back in like 1991-4. Since then it seems that things have gone down hill. There are still the ocassional gems to be found in the back alleys but overall the graf around here has gone “corporate”. Or maybe I don’t like graffiti as much anymore. Or maybe it’s just the same old shit recycled over and over? In any case, this pile of garbage was more interesting than most of the graffiti around here. Not trying to offend anyone, I just think alot of graffiti is getting stagnant and inbred.

This is what I’m talking about. A typical L.A. street sign. More advertising stickers than art stickers. I don’t think this would happen in New York or Frisco. Maybe L.A. is fake....



Next we headed over to New Image Art to see the Neckface show, “Witch Hunt”. I don’t know, I guess I’m not hip but I’d never heard of him until about a month ago. Then his stuff came out in Juxtapoz in the latest issue and it peaked my curiosity. I mean, you can have a face on a neck but how can you have a neck on a face? I was both pleasantly surprised and horrified. There's a lot of humor to be found in his pieces.Neckface creates some really cool paintings which are often very violent. From his art he would seem to be a psycho! But upon talking to gallery owner Marsea, we found out that he’s a nice young gentleman who had no problem palling around with her youngster. Apparently he enjoys racking occasionally, which ain’t too serious a crime. You go Neckface!
Here’s some pictures from the show:

One side of the show was his paintings and the other was these metal masks. Quite nice, they really went well with his pieces on wood and paper.

There was an installation in the small “project” room where Neckface installed a fabric witch with missing bloody limbs. Pretty creepy. The masks were really cool!

New Image Art owner Marsea. To get her to smile for the camera I said, “Say Sex!!”

While we were there “the Texans” showed up. Pepper and Michael are architects from Austin and have a great collection of art including Barry McGee, Margaret Kilgallon, Jo Jackson, Jerry King, Taylor McKimmens, Matt Liennes, the Space 1026er’s, Chris Johanson, Alicia McCarthy, Neckface, me, and lots more. It was great to finally meet them in person!

I put this Fecal sticker on the pole outside New Image but had to jump up to reach and accidentally put it over someone else’s. No disrespect meant to whoever it is!

Next stop was JUNC, a new gallery/store opened up on Sunset. The show is called Post-It. And it’s all, you guessed it, artwork done on post-It notes. It was curated by husband and wife duo Esther Pearl Watson and Mark Todd. Here’s the artists involved: Allison Cole, Marc Bell, Sammy Harkam, Salee Oh, Souther Salazar, Ron Rege Jr., Paper Rad, Peter Hamlin, Jordan Crane, Joe Roccco, Jonathon Rosen, Tim Biskup, Megan Whitmarsh, John Pham, Raina Lee, Bwana Spoons, Martha Rich, Patrick Roberts, David Goldin, Calef Brown and Anderson Nilsen. All the pieces were $10 and from the amount of red dots the show sold pretty well! Some really creative and fun things going on in these squares. We talked to the owner for a bit and never got his name, stupid me. Anyways, this show was rad and JUNC should be a destination for anyone coming out to L.A. They also had a huge collection of handmade zines, prints, shirts and small paintings.

We didn’t get enough of Marth Rich, Souther Salazar and Saelee Oh last night at the opening so for our last stop we headed up to Eagle Rock to visit their studio. They share it with the amazing Calef Brown and Esther Pearl Watson and Mark Todd. Unfortunately Calef was in Maine and Mark and Esther were in Texas(?). It was really nice talking to the three studio mates, I think Jennifer and I could have sat there talking all day and into the night. We talked about art. We talked about giant colons. We talked about breastfeeding. Souther recalled a story about getting his balls stepped on (oouchhh). We talked about People and Star, and stealing cable TV. Crooked teeth and molars. Neckface. Gus’s. Jason Holley. The Mutter museum. Obsessive bunny people. And much more. It was fun, what a great group. I’m jealous that they have such amazing artists as their studio mates. But I’m even more jealous of their space. They have it partitioned just enough to let it stay open while giving all six their own areas. I think it just may be the coolest studio ever (spoken in my best deadpan voice). Enough writing. Check the pictures.

Martha Rich's area:

She was working on this bra painting when we arrived.

Mark Todd and Esther Pearl Watson's area:

Calef Brown's area:

Next page....

Saelee and Souther's area:

Headed back to Riverside and snapped this shot of the moon.

Nothing ends a warm August night like the DQ. It's all about German Chocolate Blizzards.

My parents joined us for some ice cream.

Another long day where I didn't really get any work done. On the other hand I feel refreshed and inspired by seeing so much damn art today. Tomorrow will be my last day, I'm kinda sad but this has been a lot of work so it's a good thing. i don't know how the daily blog people do it. See ya around tomorrow. Jeff signing out.


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