Archive for October, 2009

Ken Matsumoto and Signe Mayfield Receive Awards

Posted by erin on October 30th, 2009

ARTSHIFT Honors Artist and Curator with Cash Awards

Out of a long list of special people that contribute to Silicon Valley’s diverse and exciting visual arts community, one artist and one curator were selected for $2000. cash awards that were presented on October 21, at Works Gallery in downtown San Jose. The awards were presented to Signe Mayfield and Ken Matsumoto by Scott Knies, Executive Director of the San Jose Downtown Association.


Works Gallery filled with celebrants enjoying libations and conversation at the ARTSHIFT Awards, 2009

A supportive crowd of artists, friends and family were on hand to enjoy the occasion, and to support and congratulate all nominees . ARTSHIFT Editor, Erin Goodwin-Guerrero thanked the ARTSHIFT Advisory Board, Donors to ARTSHIFT, fiscal sponsor: the Arts Council Silicon Valley and all the talented and creative people that make the South Bay community from Palo Alto to Santa Cruz an exciting place to live.


Kathryn Funk, Ben Alexy and his Mom join in the festivities.


Jose Estrada in Gallery 2, SJSU

Posted by erin on October 29th, 2009

BFA Show Walks Onto the Wild Side

by Erin Goodwin-Guerrero

The wild life and wildlife are both included in Jose Estrada’s energetic exhibition of the same name at San Jose State University. The multi-panel painting Full Bar, is the showcase work that really addresses a young painters existential search. Estrada says, ” The ‚ÄúWild Life‚Äù exhibition is a thought that has been running through my mind for sometime now. Life in itself is complex; there is this vibration to life and people with their animal-like behavior. I do this work to understand the ‚Äúwhy‚Äù in myself, but also to find redeeming qualities in my world. I would hope that through this search for a moral fiber, I can find a redeeming point to reality.”

Estrada does a terrific job of portraying the inevitable anthropomorphic behavior that can be observed in a pub. He likes to observe the human animal a bit like an anthropologist, psychologist and zoologist. “I see these beasts in their setting‚Ķ the inner being of a single person is this jungle of mixed images and untamed emotions‚Ķ I can depict things that may confuse and provoke the senses, with imagery that at is shocking, dramatic, haunting and sometimes even quietly reflective.” Indeed his bold painting style with pure pigments and intense color is full of raw life.

full bar2 estrada

Jose Estrada’s multi-panel painting Full Bar, 2009

Of all the works in the show, Full Bar is the most conceptually developed, and the most visually successful with all the fun and fundamentals of form one could hope for from a promising emerging painter.


Posted by erin on October 18th, 2009

The 2009 ARTSHIFT Awards Nominees

By Erin Goodwin-Guerrero, Editor

Just to get your curiosity piqued, ARTSHIFT is publishing a brief profile of each of the artists and curators who have been nominated this year for their valued contributions to the art community of Silicon Valley. Every individual represents a unique and significant aspect of our rich art scene and it is rewarding to see the community respond with such a broad range of nominations. They will all be celebrated on October 21, at 6:00 pm, at Works Gallery in San Jose’s Sofa District. The public is invited to attend as Downtown Association Excecutive Director Scott Knies presents special cash awards to two of the nominees.


Paul Roehl, Open Studios, Santa Cruz (Oct. 17-18, 2009)

Posted by erin on October 18th, 2009

Landscape, Light, Romance, Nostalgia

by Hanna Hannah

#3 San Joaquin - oil on canvas 23

Paul Roehl: San Joaquin

In Svetlana Boym’s, The Future of Nostalgia, “off-modernism” is posited as “a critique of both the modern fascination with newness and no less modern reinvention of tradition. In the off-modern tradition, reflection and longing, estrangement and affection go together.” These affects are the essential operatives in Paul Roehl’s landscape paintings currently on view at his studio in Santa Cruz (at 501 Swift Street; (831423-3840).

Roehl‚Äôs ostensible subjects are specific places—San Joaquin, Etruscan Steps, Wilder Ranch, Assisi, Pogonip Walk, Lake Como, etc.‚Äîthat, with some rare exceptions, seem to dissolve into a single, aoristic sense of Landscape: pan-geography of an eternal everywhere.


Paul Roehl : Assisi



Posted by erin on October 7th, 2009

Santa Cruz Artist Travels Between The Abstract, Non-objective and Symbolic By Erin Goodwin-Guerrero


Espina, 2009, Oil and casein on canvas, by Tim Craighead

Somewhere between the great unknowable mysteries and small discoveries that suggest our universe is comprehensible, Tim Craighead’s art is involved in a journey of discovery. The Santa Cruz artist whose current exhibition is at Gerald Peters Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, talks about abstraction, mark making, the objective and the non-objective in discussing the formal aspects of his work. Craighead likes to pull unknown and as-yet undiscovered truths from an abstract framework and orchestrate the “symbolic potential” of certain objective references that emerge. If the process sounds cool and logical, there is a lot of magic that transcends the paint and ink in his paintings, and prints in this show.


Craighead’s August, 2007, Oil and alkyd resin on linen

Craighead creates painterly fields that might allude to the vast expanses of the universe, horizon lines, the depths of the ocean or the view through a microscope. They are cropped views and shapes that, incomplete, appear abstract, and smaller forms that coalesce into symbolic events and figures varying in their intelligibility. A line may exist for its own sake or be a fragment of DNA or become a knot or a boat. The boat may function as an example of revelation of the interior structure of any form and, at the same time, speak to the adventure of sailing forth at the mercy of the elements with no guaranteed destination. From one work to the next, a particular form — it is pine-cone-like — becomes a seed pod, a diagrammatic radar signal rising vertically up the center line of an oval, or an egg-shaped cluster of glittering facets like a chunk of fool’s gold. Sometimes, as in the case of the Espina, an object is a man made interpretation of such forms, executed in wrought iron, perhaps representing an intellectual recognition of its fundamental importance and relationship to physics or biology or architecture. Many of these small icons that populate Craighead’s fields become emblems of personal significance. Having grown out of his discovery of the interior forces that both literally and symbolically support a particular structure, Craighead takes ownership of that form and it generates the ongoing variations of his visual vocabulary.



Posted by erin on October 6th, 2009

Selections from the Mexican Museum Delight with the Many Faces of Mexican Art

By Erin Goodwin-Guerrero


Rodolfo Morales’ Untitled 1989 oil, 71.5 x 99″, a signature painting: The celebration of Oaxacan women is a major theme in his work.

All the abundant colors from the pastels to the primaries, and the magnificent phases of Mexican arts, from the pre-Columbian to the contemporary — all are represented in a tantalizing and exquisite selection of works form the Mexican Museum in San Francisco, now on exhibition at the Palo Alto Art Center. For “Treasures from the Mexican Museum: A Spirited Legacy”, curator Signe Mayfield has chosen a broad selection works whose creators come from the anonymity of the early pre-conquest cultures up to the current diaspora of the Latino throughout the Americas and the USA in particular. Chicanos and Mexican Americans from the Bay Area are an important part of the show. Some of Mexico’s most culturally significant and important Modern artists are represented by some of their most impressive works. Mayfield has organized the selections for this exhibition into five thematic groupings: Emblems of Spirituality, Iconic Portraiture & the Individual, Art of the Fantastic, Material Presence: Chicano/a Art, and Memories of the Community. She develops the historical context for each in an informative and beautifully printed brochure. The viewer cannot help but be seduced by the great history, the passion, sentiment, and technical accomplishment of the artists of Mexican heritage.


Anonymous Pre-Conquest redware and burnished blackware in vessels and animal effigies are some of the earliest selections from the collection of the Mexican Museum.

One great example is the large painting, Untitled/Sin Titulo, by Oaxacan artist Rodolfo Morales, in which Morales’ famous female actors preside over a typical central plaza of the pueblo. Oaxaca is hailed for the strength and charisma of its indigenous women, and Morales celebrates their ubiquitous presence. Here, the women guide the spiritual energy that springs from the heavens and the ancestors. They are guardians of the plaza, presiding with watchful eyes over the streets at night. They fly, like angels in formation, around the town to ensure peace and tranquility. Morales’ women inhabit every corner and aspect of civic life from gossip, rituals of mourning, to fashion and commerce. His style is also very integrated into the figurative traditions of Oaxacan artists, many of which can be easily traced to Rufino Tamayo.