I had a good time this Thursday, running around with my buddy, Matt, to all the various art shows around Portland. It was the first Thursday of the month so we hit up some of the coolest galleries around town.
First off, we went to the Compound Gallery inside Just Be Complex, on 5th and Couch. They always have some of my favorite artists showing and this Thursday I got to meet Andrew Hem, whose work I have been following for a while now. He was one half of a two person show, Fracture: Jason Shawn Alexander and Andrew Hem.
I know this is always said, but it needs to be emphasized, artwork always looks so much better in person. I loved seeing Andrew's work. I have seen his artwork on the web but to see them in person was amazing. With a muted palette and very few details, he brings out characters that have a distinct look of their own and are very lifelike. He makes it look so simple. I also like the way he uses repeated patterns on clothing and in the background. His painting of a break dancer on the flier had swashes of color matching the character's shirt flowing off of him and hovering in the air.
He also had a ton of matchbook peeps, paintings done on matchbooks that were slightly open making the matches look like teeth. These I also loved when i saw them on the website and loved even more when I saw them in person. I got to talk to him for a bit and he is a very nice guy. Good work. 8)
Jason Shawn Alexander's work was good a well. It was very loose and the splattery painter in me really liked it. I was caught up in Hem-land and didn't get to meet him, but i did get some pics of his work. I think the two artists complimented each other well.
We went to a few other galleries, but nothing caught my eye until we went to Backspace and saw this when I came around the corner.
The best was seeing everyone else's faces as they came around the corner. A lot of, "Oh my"s and squinting of eyes and pulling back in shock. "Whoa." That is pretty much it for "First Thursday." I need to find a few more good galleries to check out next time. Here are some pics from me and Matt hanging out last "Last Thursday." Matt had printed off some drawings and laminated them. He puts them in his spokes while he's cruising the city. We each ate two veggie dogs while we were out there. Mmmmmm. Good eats.
So far I have sold one painting each time and no drawings yet. And the drawings are way cheap. If anyone would like a drawing that is on my Myspace page, I'll mail ya one for 10 bucks. 8) I'm going to have more paintings next time and try to display them a lil better. Catch some attention.
Matt made an interesting observation last time we were out there. It seems that his art attracts a lil bit dirtier crowd, hippies, grungy kids, small kids love his stuff, while most people who stop to look at my art are pretty girls or hipsters. Here's Matt's pics on Myspace and here are mine. The art world is weird. Must be why I like it.