Welcome to the Tenderloin
“It is fun to say things that aren’t polite, and I think it is fun to hear such things as well,” says artist Yokonori Stone with regard to her work at Ever Gold Gallery. This includes a cartoonish painting of a disembodied penis urinating onto a coiled mound of feces with “Welcome to the Tenderloin” written beneath, a person falling off the Golden Gate Bridge, a bearded “Mission Hipster” and portraits of Giants pitchers Tim Lincecum and Vida Blue, among other such precious images.
Stone has only been in SF a little over a year, and what an impression our city appears to have made on her. Scrolling through Ever Gold’s image gallery of her work, a number of hostile kneejerk responses leap to mind: that the work is disingenuous, uncharitable, ironic, crude. And yet, none of the artist’s statements seems to abide these attitudes, and there is an odd cuteness to the paintings that cannot be denied. Could Stone truly be as ingenuous as an alternate reading of her work might allow? Only in-person inspection will tell.
Welcome to the Tenderloin runs April 5 through April 26 at Ever Gold Gallery, 441 O’Farrell St. Opening Reception: Thursday, April 5, 6 – 10pm
Jordan Eagles, "FKTS18", 2012; 48x60x3; Blood, copper preserved on pleixglass, UV resin
Peering into New York-based Jordan Eagles’ mesmerizing sculptures – planes of plexiglass and resin with spiderwebbing patterns of rich, translucent fluid suspended within – you might stop to ask what you are looking at. Every artist has his preferred medium, and Eagles’ is preserved animal blood. The plot thickens (so to speak).
Beyond the ritualistic significance of this materials choice, Eagles’ blood affords him amazing textural possibilities. Burning and aging the material, introducing foreign elements and applying it to gauze, the artist brings out breathtaking reds and blacks, bubbles and protein pools. Assuming your stomach hasn’t already turned, check out this gorgeous video of the artist at work. And then, of course, stop in to see the pieces for yourself.
Haemoscuro runs April 5 through May 25 at Mark Wolfe Contemporary Art, 1 Sutter St., Suite 300
Tadashi Moriyama, "Artemis on the Ceiling"; Acrylic and ink on paper, 6 x 4 inches
Hymns to the Moon
Johansson Projects has a stellar track record when it comes to putting together joint exhibitions. The Oakland gallery organizes shows in which the work of one artist seems so crucial to a complete interpretation of the other, it becomes unthinkable that they might have been shown apart.
This time around, we have the ecstatically detailed paintings by Tadashi Moriyama, depicting a society in the throes of some sort of postmodern apocalypse. Within the finely detailed scenes, what look like semiconductors, computer keyboards, high-rises and currency tangle with classical sculpture, mythic personages and imagery evoking original sin. Hanging alongside are Robert Minervini’s serene, if unsettlingly depopulated, visions of a neon sunset-hued future world. An aftermath of sorts? It’s hard not to see it that way.
Hymns to the Moon runs through May 5 at Johansson Projects, 2300 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. Opening Reception: Friday, April 6, 5 – 8pm
Kevin Grady, "Ninja Baby 2"; image courtesy of the artist; © McKinley Art Solutions
Lost and Found
The way we relate to assemblage artwork is worlds different from how we relate to any ordinary such detritus. A found lampshade or wristwatch is just what it is – yard sale fodder, maybe useful, maybe not. Until it is in an art gallery, that is.
Curator Matt McKinley and the thirteen artists featured in Arc Studios’ Lost and Found know this. “… when [discarded and reclaimed objects] are transformed into an object to be contemplated, we layer supposition and opinion upon them, imbuing them with feeling,” McKinley points out. Suddenly, these curious items take on foggy narratives of their own. What serendipitous chain of events brought them here, of all places, before me? An imaginative feast unfurls.
Lost and Found runs April 7 through May 5 at Arc Studios and Gallery, 1246 Folsom St. Opening Reception: Saturday, April 7, 6 – 9pm