Author Archives: O


Brain Frame 16 :: January 25, 2014

Brain Frame 16 :: January 25, 2014

Brain Frame is a series of performative comix readings founded in 2011. Brain Frame gives comics and zine artists, as well as others interested in the same, a place to interpret their work in front of an open-minded audience, incorporating elements impossible to reproduce on a printed page.
Brain Frame happens every other month in Chicago. This coming Saturday is #16, featuring readings by ::

It should be a good time.


FIRST SHOW: doors at 6, show at 7 :: ALL AGES :: tickets:

SECOND SHOW: doors at 9, show at 10 :: 21+ :: tickets:


Little Grey Cells – Alice Tippit at Night Club

Little Grey Cells at Night Club feat. Alice Tippit

Opening reception for solo exhibition by Alice Tippit is this coming Friday, January 24 from 7:00 – 9:00 PM.
Tippit is a recent graduate from the SAIC MFA program in Painting and Drawing and has had solo exhibitions at Jancar Jones Gallery in Los Angeles, Important Projects in San Francisco, and at PEREGRINEPROGRAM in Chicago.


To Win and To Hold

To Win and To Hold

Currently up at The Mission is a site-specific installation by Liz Ensz and Jeremiah Jones. Both artists examine themes of American history, mythologies and representations of morality, power, and freedom. Ensz and Jones’ site-specific installation in THE SUB-MISSION is multi-media collage of existential musings and a proposal for the subversion of capitalism’s monopoly on optimism.”

The show is on view until February 22, 2014. For more information click the following link:


MCA Live Boulevard Dreamers January 21, 2014 6-8pm

MCA Live Boulevard Dreamers January 21, 2014 6-8pm

“Boulevard Dreamers is a traveling installation and variety show responding to the specific narratives and communities of the sites and venues it visits. This collaborative project by artists Lise Baggesen and Kirsten Leenaars consists of three parts: an installation/stage set, a series of performances, and a growing collection of portraits of the performers involved.”

Tomorrow will consist of a variety of performances.
From 12-1pm you can hear poetry by Carol Feiser Laque, and story telling by Mairead Case and In The Spirit.

The evening portion begins at 5:30pm until 8pm. There will be stand up comedy by my good pal Jessica Campbell, as well as writer, spoken word poet, and musician Marvin Tate, and experimental music group the Pillowhammer.

For the full list click on the following link:


Ghost Nature at Gallery 400

Ghost Nature at Gallery 400

Last night was the opening for Ghost Nature at Gallery 400. The group exhibition was curated by Caroline Picard and focuses on the “strangeness of the natural world”. The show runs from January 17-March 1, 2014.

(Carrie Gundersdorf, Four Section of Saturn’s Rings, 2013, colored pencil and watercolor on paper, 46 x 60 in )


Heather Mekkelson at 65Grand

Heather Mekkelson at 65Grand

Chicago artist Heather Mekkelson’s show entitled, “Now Slices” opened last night at 65GRAND.

The show runs from January 17 – February 15, 2014

Devoid Opening at LNC at SAIC


An exhibition by Kate Conlon, Boyang Hou, Kristy Luck, and Steven Vainberg

OPENING RECEPTION| Tuesday, December 3, 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Whether in our grandest attempts to impose order onto the cosmos or in our quietest moments of introspection, we look to darkness to define our collective and individual experiences. We fear, dream, think, and search for meaning in darkness. Individually we dwell in darkness, and as a mass we propagate it. Through a diverse range of media, artists Kate Conlon(MFA 2014), Boyang Hou (MFA 2014), Kristy Luck (MFA 2014), and Steven Vainberg (MFA 2014) explore the simultaneously abstract and tangible perception of light and dark, the dichotomy of good and evil, and the unperceivable infinity of the cosmos. Together, works interrogate the mind’s tendency to dive headfirst into the void.



Dinner with Janine Antoni

Dinner with Janine Antoni

I was one of a small pool of MFA students allowed to have dinner with visiting artist Janine Antoni following her lecture. She was extremely generous and warm. She discussed her time in school and spoke of funny memories of Allison Katz (who was an SAIC Visiting Artist just weeks prior).


Within and Without at Supernova Blast

Within and Without at Supernova Blast

Show curated by Selena Jones & Ashley Szczesiak
(both SAIC Grads)

Their statement for the show:
The idea for this show emerged from our joint acknowledgment of the feeling that we, too, operate simultaneously “within and without” of larger social, theoretical, and artistic frameworks: While we work within the art world as members of the artistic community, we collectively band together to work outside/without of certain normative social structures to challenge the static, status quo prescription for life and encourage an alternative vision, wherein life is valued as a living force, forever “coming into being.”

Interview with Peter Fagundo 11/2013

Interview with Peter Fagundo



I first met Peter at SAIC when he was a panelist for my Fall 2012 final critique in the Graduate PTDW dept. This past summer I had the pleasure of working as his teaching assistant during one of the Early College Program summer sessions at SAIC. (He is pictured above hanging up student work during one of our class sessions). You can find some of his own work on his website found here.


Can you describe briefly what you do?

I love painting, everything about it… both inside and outside of its terms, structures, rules and histories.  I follow threads and inspirations/consciousness as they become pertinent to my life.  There is an ever evolving conversational reality between the world/life and I that takes painting to negotiate and re-constellate.

What were your earliest experiences of making art? How did you become a painter? Did you go to art school?

My parents had one of those old “History of Art” books in the living room.  I used to sit and page through the pictures of dragons, bloody scenes (crucifixions) and naked ladies… enraptured.  I would make clunky sketches of my favorites in the margins of the book.

I became a painter because I had tried nearly everything else that came my way or was recommended to me and nothing else fit… except painting and drawing.

I spent one year as a transfer undergrad at SAIC after earning an undergraduate degree in Psychology from a Jesuit school in Denver.  Then I went back to school for my MFA at the age of 30.

What, outside visual art, informs your practice? What drives you to make work?


What drives my practice is desire… desire to engage, to make sense of, to touch, to feel, to feel better, to feel at all sometimes.  And I’m very curious. I have a lot of questions about things… right and wrong, light and dark, true and false… these inquiries drive the conversation of my interests and concerns.


My restless, irritable and discontent nature drives me to make work.


Who were some of your mentors? Inspirations? Influences? What about current influences? Who do you look at now or listen to?


I’ve had many teachers and guides: Vadim Katznelson gave me permission to be an artist,  Dan Gustin taught me how to see, Ellen Rothenberg taught me to think critically, Ray Yoshida taught me to be quiet, Michelle Grabner taught me to show both sides… every side, Shane Campbell invited me to trust myself, Dan Devening cautioned me not to trust everything.  Titus Obrien continues to help me trust the process.

Then there are my masters: Rembrandt, Goya, Giacometti, Guston, Picasso… Matisse, Matisse and oh yeah… Matisse. Every single thing in the Art Institute of Chicago… you can learn something from everything, at some point.  Now? Caroll Dunham.  Still and always Jasper Johns, Ad Rheinhardt and Agnes Martin.  Much of contemporary painting is, I think, focused on the short game of art, whereas I’m invested and care deeply about the long game.


What advice would you give a young painter? What advice do you think you would have benefited yourself at an early stage of your life as a painter?


Try to find your most authentic, heart-felt response.  Try to isolate the thing to do with paint, the canvas and/or the tools of painting that rings truest and closest to your dearest wish… BUT FIRST KNOW THE TERMS OF THE CONVERSATION YOU ARE ASKING TO BE A PART OF…


Advice: trust your impulses, find a teacher who has what you want and build your life around the thing that makes you most happy… whatever that is… ** read Rilke’s Letters To A Young Poet**



What is your take on painting and/in Chicago? Is this city an inspiration to you? What are its challenges?


Chicago reminds us that, for better or worse, there is NO formula for succeeding in art…and it forces us to define, for real, what success in art looks like.  In the end, there is no such thing as “Chicago.” We are just where we are, doing what we do… do we really want to spend any energy discussing a construct or an agreement that doesn’t really serve us?  New York, Chicago, LA… whatever…


Can you describe what are you working on now? What’s next as far as projects and/or exhibitions?


I’ve recently concluded some sort of season or cycle of work which was an inquiry into painting, the story, the first story, sex, love, color, composition, self, other, desire and repulsion, etc…

I sort of took a break for a couple of months while life circumstances settled again and now I’m back to just covering small canvases with paint in rather lively, intuitive and goofy ways… I think.  I don’t know where it’s going and I know I’m done with the figure. My practice doesn’t seem to have much of a rhythm or predictable trajectory. 


I have a solo show opening at Dan Devening’s on Dec 15th.  I’m a little nervous about showing this work, but excited to see the response.


I’m also beginning a project with Alberto Aguilar where we are going to re-paint 14 six by eight foot paintings on canvas which he stole from the City of Chicago Colleges… We will paint them in a gallery/museum (we haven’t found a patron/sponsor yet) over a period of 7 days.