Archive

April 24, 2020

SPACE

A Collection of Essays and Images Curated by Shana Mabari and Andi Campognone

An intimate meditation on an almost infinite subject, Space aims to explode an ordinary everyday word into a dazzling prism via an exploration of some of the many interpretations of the term. Artist Shana Mabari asked more than a dozen individuals from dramatically different walks of life—from an astronaut and a filmmaker to an art critic and a musician—what they think about when they think about space. Their answers, which alternate with exceptional work from contemporary Southern California artists selected by curator Andi Campognone, invigorate and inspire, and in turn become fodder for reflection upon our relationship to ourselves, to others, and to the universe at large.

 

January 21, 2020

Zen Psychosis

Zen Psychosis is a work of experimental fiction: the attempt to construct a personal memoir culled not from diaries, but dreams. In a way, as the scenes are taken from my own journals, this book is not fiction at all; the dreams are real, their meanings form a story. As a critic of art and an amateur student of Jungian psychoanalysis, I am often compelled to decode intuitive, inscrutable symbols and assemble meaning from the clues the dream or the artist leaves behind. In this novel, I’m applying the technique to my own inner self.

This was directly inspired by Henry Miller, who in 1923 slipped an account of a vivid dream into a collection of short stories in [Black Spring]. “Into the Nightlife: A Coney Island of the Mind” later became an illustrated book in a collaboration between Miller and the artist Bezalel Schatz in 1947, as its tantalizing surrealism and literary voice actively blurred the boundaries between experience and imagination.

The accompaniment of fantastical pinhole photographs by Osceola Refetoff augments and expands on this dynamic; bringing a beguiling dreamlike quality to what are in fact, people and places in the real world outside ourselves. As an artist and student of cinema, Refetoff has long been fascinated with the conventional visual language of what dreams are supposed to look like.

Shana Nys Dambrot is an art critic, curator, and author based in Downtown LA. She is the Arts Editor for the L.A. Weekly, and a contributor to Flaunt, Artillery, and other publications. She studied Art History at Vassar College, writes essays for books and exhibition catalogs, curates and juries exhibitions, and speaks at galleries, schools, and cultural institutions nationally. Dambrot is a member of ArtTable and an award-winning member of the Los Angeles Press Club.

Osceola Refetoff is a photographer interested in documenting humanity’s impact on the world, both the intersection of nature and industry, and the narratives of the people living at those crossroads. His parallel careers as an editorial and fine art photographer are characterized by an evocative, cinematic understanding of how scale, point of view, architecture, and motion can express the essence of a given place. Osceola graduated from NYU Film School and is the recipient of the 2018 Los Angeles Press Club National Photojournalist of the Year.

May 16, 2019

Sant Khalsa: Prana – Life with Trees

Sant Khalsa is an artist and activist whose projects develop from her impassioned inquiry into the nature of place and complex environmental and societal issues. Her artworks create a contemplative space where one can sense the subtle and profound connections between themselves and the natural world.

The subject of trees has been a focus in Sant Khalsa’s creative work for nearly five decades. Prana: Life with Trees is the first in depth survey of Khalsa’s intimate connection with trees – her explorations, observations, perceptions and interpretations. Her unique perspective is expressed through a style that encompasses the documentary, subjective and conceptual. Her work evokes a meditative calm to what we often experience as a chaotic and conflicted world.

Khalsa is concerned with both the micro and macro aspects of forests: what is seen and unseen; historical, scientific and spiritual; and personal and universal. She is mindful of our symbiotic relationship with trees and forests, grounded in the life-sustaining connection through the breath (exchange of carbon dioxide and oxygen). Her beautiful, distinctive and sometime disquieting works express the cycle of life (birth, life, death, and rebirth), the destruction and memory of the forest, as well as the promise of new growth.

The book includes her earliest landscapes (self-portraits and photographs of orange groves); images of trees from her three decades photographing in the Santa Ana Watershed and other locations in the American West; and mixed-media sculptures and installation works inspired by her research on air quality and life-changing experience planting more than a thousand trees in 1992 as part of the reforestation of Holcomb Valley in the San Bernardino Mountains. In her recent color photographs, we witness the fruits of her activism, a healthy, thriving and hopeful forest eco-system.

Sant Khalsa’s artworks are widely exhibited internationally, collected by prestigious museums including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Nevada Museum of Art and Center for Creative Photography in Tucson and published in numerous art books and periodicals. Khalsa is a recipient of prestigious fellowships, awards and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, California Arts Council, California Council for the Humanities and others. She is a Professor of Art, Emerita at California State University, San Bernardino and resides in Joshua Tree.

March 27, 2019

UC Berkeley Arts + Design Showcase: Issue 03 2019

Issue 3 of Made at Berkeley gathers outstanding creative work by UC Berkeley undergraduate students with stunning texts and images on nearly every page. From the visual arts to film to the performing arts, from the literary arts to architectural and industrial design, the book features the achievements of top students in their respective fields. These works demonstrate the discipline of particular art forms—painting, theater, poetry—as well as the vibrant ‘mash-up’ of cross-disciplinary experiment. Described in the voices of the students who made them, the collection exemplifies and advances the innovation and creativity of UC Berkeley.

January 7, 2019

Paul Cummins: The Collected Poems

Paul Cummins, a renown educator and social justice activist, entered the world of poetry in 1966 while writing a doctoral dissertation on the poetry of twice pulitzer prize winning Richard Wilbur at USC. This book, selected from the nearly 600 poems written between 1966-2017, since then, offers a clear and often inspiring voice, with brilliant and sacred imagery all the while allowing for uncommon accessibility. This volume includes sonnets, prose poems, odes as well as various metered, and stanzaic poems.

Cummins, likens the absolute quiet that he requires to create as his own mini temple. Where usually the act of creation is deliberate, sometimes it startled Cummins: “Sometimes, poems just appear, such as ‘Red Rover’ which wrote itself in the my head while driving, and I had to pull over on the side of the rode to capture it.”

In addition to poems about everyday life, the subjects of this selection occasionally delve into literature and history as in “HCE: A Son-Not (?)”, and “Endsandbeginsand,” each providing a nod to Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake, in addition to war poems featuring subjects from Buchenwald to Nagasaki to Vietnam.

Cummins offers a rare blend of depth and accessibility. These poems, besides addressing the core issues of human experience, offer genuine aesthetic treats – unusual forms, rhyme and rhythm in synch, assonance and imagery. Even in poems seemingly simple, there is artistry to enjoy.

September 25, 2018

KIMBERLY BROOKS: Fever Dreams

This book chronicles shift in practice from figuration to abstraction in the paintings of Kimberly Brooks using the last five years of painting against the backdrop of her works on paper spanning her career.  The book is published in conjunction with Mt San Antonio College. Beautiful color images, essays by Michael Wilson and Shana Nys Dambrot, and an Interview with curator Fatemeh Burnes fill this compilation.

Kimberly Brooks integrates figuration and abstraction to explore a variety of subjects dealing with history, memory and identity. Exhibitions include Mom’s Friends, Technicolor Summer, The Stylist Project, I Notice People Disappear, Brazen and most recently Fever Dreams at Mt San Antonio College (2018). Brooks paintings have been showcased in numerous juried exhibitions with artist curators including Chris Burden, Mira Schor and Museum curators from the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Modern Art, California Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Her work has been featured in or as covers for books from publishers including Bloomsbury, Hachette, Rizzoli and recently the featured subject of Brazen, A Collection of Paintings and Poetry by Griffith Moon. Her work has received international press and she was recently a featured artist for the National Endowment for the Arts.  Also an educator, Brooks teaches workshops around the country including at Otis School of Art and Design in Los Angeles and The Anderson Ranch Art Center in Colorado. She is the recipient of the Franklyn Liegel Award for Teaching excellence.

Brooks was born in New York, NY and grew up in Mill Valley, California. She received a BA from UC Berkeley in Literature and studied painting at Otis Art Institute (now Otis College of Art & Design) and UCLA.   She lives and works in Los Angeles.

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Kimberly Brooks integrates figuration and abstraction to explore a variety of subjects dealing with history, memory and identity. Exhibitions include Mom’s Friends, Technicolor Summer, The Stylist Project, I Notice People Disappear, Brazen and most recently Fever Dreams at Mt San Antonio College (2018). Brooks paintings have been showcased in numerous juried exhibitions with artist curators including Chris Burden, Mira Schor and Museum curators from the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Modern Art, California Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Her work is the featured subject of Brazen, A Collection of Paintings and Poetry by Griffith Moon. Her work has received international press and she was recently a featured artist for the National Endowment for the Arts. Also an educator, Brooks teaches workshops around the country including at Otis School of Art and Design in Los Angeles and The Anderson Ranch Art Center in Colorado. She is the recipient of the Franklyn Liegel Award for Teaching excellence. She was born in New York City, raised in Mill Valley and works and lives in Los Angeles.

July 24, 2018

He Started It!: My Twitter War with Trump

In 2013, Donald Trump got involved in his first sustained Twitter War. Unfortunately for Trump, in this endeavor as in so very many others, he was not up to the task. If you’re someone with no discernible sense of humor – someone for whom ridicule is like Kryptonite – a professional comedy writer would not be an ideal opponent with whom to engage. He Started It!: My Twitter War with Trump is the complete record (with commentary) of Donald Trump’s hilarious three-month-long delusion that he was outwitting Danny Zuker. Introduction by Paul Slansky.

Danny Zuker
When not trolling the leader of the free world, Danny Zuker (@DannyZuker) works as a television comedy writer/producer. He’s spent the last nine years as one of the executive producers of Modern Family, and has worked on many shows including Evening Shade, Roseanne, Just Shoot Me, and so many flops.

Paul Slansky
Paul Slansky (@slansky) thought he hated Richard Nixon. He thought he hated Ronald Reagan. He thought he hated George W. Bush. It turns out he had no idea what the word meant. He does now. He is the author of The Clothes Have No Emperor: A Chronicle of the American ’80s and five other books that mock the idiots, hypocrites and demagogues who, ludicrously, are allowed to “lead” us.

May 21, 2018

UC Berkeley Arts + Design Showcase: Issue 02 2018

UC Berkeley Arts + Design: gathers outstanding creative work by UC Berkeley undergraduate students with stunning texts and images on nearly every page. From the visual arts to film to the performing arts, from the literary arts to architectural and industrial design, the UC Berkeley Arts + Design: features the achievements of top students in their respective fields. These works demonstrate the discipline of particular art forms—painting, theater, poetry—as well as the vibrant ‘mash-up’ of cross-disciplinary experiment. Described in the voices of the students who made them, the collection exemplifies and advances the innovation and creativity of UC Berkeley.

May 16, 2018

Oil Painting Safe Practices Materials & Supplies: The Essential Guide

Paperback
151  pages
5 x 8 inches

ISBN: 978-0-9998452-0-2

$14.99

The Essential Guide: Oil Painting Safe Practices Materials & Supplies is a culmination of years researching the best and safest materials for oil painting by artist Kimberly Brooks. Oil painting practices need not be complicated and are often misunderstood and produce unnecessary exposure to toxic chemicals. Simple explanations and lists of mediums, canvas types, paint brands and brushes are accompanied by simple illustrations created by the artist.

Kimberly Brooks is a professional exhibiting artist and award winning teacher who on occasion conducts workshops around the country including at the Otis School of Art and Design and the Anderson Ranch Arts Center.

April 9, 2018

Central Park Love Song

Central Park Love Song is both an intimate portrait and meticulous research of America’s first great public park and the most visited site in New York City. Beginning with the narrator and his dog wandering the battered but still beautiful park in the late 1970s, readers learn why the park is so large on an island so small, why it grows in the center of Manhattan, and what has been lost to the needs of an ever-changing city. These and other stories weave through the narrative as the reader and narrator discover every cave and cranny of the park’s 843 acres and later see the park in new ways with his children, much as he did with his dog three decades before. In a creative blend of fact and imagination that includes excerpts from novels, poems, essays and songs about Central Park, we visit the park during its construction, the raucous zoo hoax of 1876, and stroll with “Miss Manhattan” –Audrey Munson, model for three statues in the park and a dozen more throughout the city. We’re at Jimmy Walker’s glamorous Casino and the bleak Hooverville nearby, slip through a fence on summer nights to swim in the reservoir—Lake Manhattan to those who love it—and experience the wondrous gift given the park and surrounding city by the legendary hawk Pale Male; finally, we watch the Central Park Conservancy’s miraculous revival of the park over the last twenty years. The book concludes at an imaginary lunch with the narrator, his young daughter, Frederick Law Olmsted and others at work on the map of “The Greensward Plan” that eventually became Central Park.

March 29, 2018

KHÔRA: John David O’Brien, Rebecca Ripple, Coleen Sterritt

What is meant when using khôra to describe this exhibition, a Platonic concept that explains the space in which ideas exist? In this exhibition space is formed and agitated by the objects, shifting between imagination and reality, the tactile reality of our everyday life re-formed as a fantasy. It is a game that plays with perception.

March 26, 2018

Memory & Identity: The Marvelous Art of Betye, Lezley & Alison Saar

Betye, Lezley and Alison Saar have created some of the most powerful, important and deeply moving art in our contemporary world. Their compelling works forge idiosyncratic constructions of social memory and personal identity, as well as the cultural histories underlying them. All three Saars assemble two- and three-dimensional works based on unexpected juxtapositions of form and content. They deploy the flotsam of material culture, from discarded architectural components (old windows, ceiling tiles, wall paper) to domestic detritus (washboards, buckets, shelves) to historic photographs and printed fabrics.

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Griffith Moon Publishing