No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man at the Renwick Gallery

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Last weekend I stopped by the Renwick’s No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man. Since the exhibit opened earlier in the month, it wasn’t that crowded which was nice. Overall, I thought the exhibition was beautiful, filled with magnificent and large installations. Pictured above is Marco Cochrane’s Truth is Beauty, a beautiful, large sculpture.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Duane Flatmo’s Tin Pan Dragon was pretty fascinating. The artist used odds and ends to fashion together a dragon. From the picture above, you can make out a muffin tin used to construct part of the dragon’s face.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

I was a little in awe when I saw David Best’s Temple. The intricate patterns of the wood that lined the walls and ceiling, were beautiful.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Here you can get a sense of the layout of the room.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Along the walls were bits of rectangular shaped pieces of wood that visitors wrote on and left wedged into the installation. I especially liked the message, “Soak in every single moment,” that a visitor had left behind.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

One room contained large constructions of different shapes with intricate patterns cut out of them, with light shining through. Yelena Filipchuk and Serge Beaulieu’s work was definitely one of my favorites of the show.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

I liked how the lights cast shadows that extended the patterns of the different objects.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

A couple of them used regular light, while the largest shape had a light that changed color every few seconds.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Above is an image of the object with the changing light.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Another one of my favorites were the FoldHaus Art Collective’s Shrumen Lumen, which consisted of large mushroom-shaped sculptures with lights that changed colors after every few minutes.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

Above is a close-up of the mushroom sculptures.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

I thought Christopher Schardt’s Nova was a fun interactive piece. Visitors would lie on the ground, looking upward of the shifting, changing screen affixed to the ceiling.

The Art of Burning Man at Renwick Gallery

My favorite interactive piece was a chalkboard room by Candy Chang, Before I Die. Visitors wrote on the walls different thoughts about what they wanted to do before they died.

No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man was a beautiful exhibit. Yet again, I enjoyed the installations that sprawled across the galleries of the Renwick.

Do Ho Suh’s Almost Home at the Smithsonian American Art Museum

Do Ho Suh

Yesterday I stopped by the Smithsonian American Art Museum to see Do Ho Suh’s Almost Home exhibit. The immersive installation features hand-sewn recreations of homes where Suh has lived around the world.

Do Ho Suh

It was amazing getting to see his attention to detail up-close and in-person. I was especially impressed with the doorknobs and piping that ran throughout the installation.

Do Ho Suh

We waited in line briefly before we could walk through the installation of bright colors. The transparent fabric made the whole art piece have a dreamlike, hazy quality.

Do Ho Suh

Around the installation were several smaller pieces and studies by Suh. I was fascinated by the colors he used, and again, those details! One of my favorites was the fire extinguisher that he recreated with fabric.

Do Ho Suh

Above you can see his fabric microwave creation.

Do Ho Suh

A couple of these radiators were also inside the installation.

Do Ho Suh

And one of the more unusual pieces was a recreation of a circuit breaker. I suppose it just seemed unusual since even though it is a detail that every home has, it’s something you don’t really expect to see represented in art.

It was definitely a fun visit taking a look at Do Ho Suh’s work. As an artist, it’s important to see what others are creating out there. That way you can get a new perspective on other artwork that’s being made, and get your own inspiration for new work.

Brian Dailey: An Odyssey at DuPont Underground

DuPont Underground

I heard about DuPont Underground a while ago, and had been meaning to stop by sometime to check it out. I liked the concept – taking an old metro station and turning it into an arts center.  So when I heard about the Homegrown DC event, where local bands were playing in the space, I bought tickets so I could see the live music and take a look at the current art exhibit.

DuPont Underground

I especially liked the graffiti along the side of the space. I’ve always had a fondness for street art, I love the colors and bold lines, and having some graffiti within the art space was wonderful.

DuPont Underground

However, I was disappointed that the current exhibit, Brian Dailey: An Odyssey, didn’t make use of the entire space. Brian Dailey’s work mainly consisted of projected imagery on the blank wall of DuPont Underground. As you can see from the photo above, the art was confined to a very small portion of the space.

Brian Dailey at DuPont Underground

I thought Brian Dailey’s celestial wildlife pieces, part of his Impressions of Africa Redux series, were beautifully done. The vibrant colors stood out, and since I’ve always been a fan of artwork that features wildlife and animals, I was especially drawn to these pieces.

Brian Dailey at DuPont Underground

I also really enjoyed the projected scenes of people, part of his Tableaux Vivant series.

Brian Dailey at DuPont Underground

I thought Tableaux Vivant displayed an interesting commentary on everyday life.

DuPont Underground

Although the music at the exhibit was difficult to hear (the room wasn’t really prepared to have the acoustics necessary for a concert), the backdrop for the concert was beautiful in its own way.

DuPont Underground

Overall, I enjoyed seeing some beautiful graffiti and taking a look at a few of Brian Dailey’s intriguing works of art.

XYZT: Abstract Landscapes at ARTECHOUSE

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

Last night I had a chance to see the XYZT: Abstract Landscapes exhibit at ARTECHOUSE – the show is closing soon, so I’m glad I had a chance to stop by. The exhibit is a world-travelled installation by French contemporary digital artists and multimedia choreographers Adrien M & Claire B.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

Lately I’ve been trying to get out the studio more to gather inspiration from other artists. And I’m happy I had a chance to see this show since it allowed me to experience an art exhibit in a new way.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

The show was a digital playground for people of all ages. I went to the evening admission, where only adults were admitted, and it was amazing to see how grown adults were playing with the exhibit like they were kids again.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

The exhibit consisted of several digital projections, and most of the projections were interactive. The image above shows a floor projection, where when you walked across it, the different particles would sense your movement and move.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

This pieces was a really fun, interactive one. It was a large cube that you’d walk into, with letters or patterns projected on the walls. You could move your hands near the walls and the letters and patterns would start moving based on your own movements.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

Here’s a touchscreen that had a pattern where users could create a ripple-like effect by pressing on the screen and moving their hands or fingers.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

Above is another touchscreen that had letters falling from the top towards the bottom of the screen. By pressing on the screen, the letters could get blocked by your hands from falling to the bottom of the screen.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

Probably one of my favorite pieces of a show was a projection that distorted the viewer’s body. It was like walking up to funhouse mirror.

Inspiration from ARTECHOUSE

And lastly, here’s a piece where particles would clump together in sections where they sensed a viewer was standing.

Overall, the exhibit was a refreshing experience. Instead of your typical stuffy museum setting, ARTECHOUSE has a modern look and feel, and the show XYZT: Abstract Landscapes let me experience the digital world of art in a new way. However, I did think the exhibit was a lot smaller than I expected. Despite being thrown off by the size of the room, the show was an incredible experience.

15 Inspirational Quotes About the Creative Life

“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” ~Andy Warhol

“If I could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint.”~Edward Hopper

“Art does not reproduce what we see; rather, it makes us see.”~Paul Klee

“Creativity takes courage.”~Henri Matisse

“To create one’s own world takes courage.”~Georgia O’Keeffe

“Painting is just another way of keeping a diary.”~Pablo Picasso

“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.”~Joseph Chilton Pearce

There is only one way to see things, until someone shows us how to look at them with different eyes.”~Pablo Picasso

“Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.”~Pablo Picasso

“I don’t like to say I have given my life to art. I prefer to say art has given me my life.” ~Frank Stella

“The main thing is to be moved, to love, to hope, to tremble, to live.”~Auguste Rodin

The best way to describe the creative life:

“I am seeking. I am striving. I am in it with all my heart.”~Vincent van Gogh

I like to think of this quote as a reminder that there will always be challenges in life. It’s just a matter of teaching yourself how to power through the tough times so you can reach those successes.

“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”~Kurt Vonnegut

“I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it.”~Vincent van Gogh 

“Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.”~Andy Warhol

Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing at SFMOMA

The other month I visited the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing 273 was one of my favorite installations there.

The installation is made from graphite and crayon on seven walls. I’m drawn to geometric shapes when it comes to works of art that I admire, and I liked the simplistic use of line and color. It creates an overall clean and minimalist look.

I drew some inspiration from LeWitt’s use of line. Perhaps I’ll start playing with bolder lines in my own work.

Tomás Saraceno’s Stillness in Motion – Cloud Cities at SFMOMA

Tomás Saraceno's Stillness in Motion - Cloud Cities

The other month I had a chance to visit San Francisco, and spent a few hours wandering around the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. One of my favorite pieces was the installation work by Tomás Saraceno – Stillness in Motion – Cloud Cities.

Tomás Saraceno's Stillness in Motion - Cloud Cities

I absolutely loved the simple, geometric shapes that took over the room. I also liked how he wove mirrors into these shapes, which continued to play with your perception of the depth of the room.

Tomás Saraceno's Stillness in Motion - Cloud Cities

Here you can get a sense of how large the webs are in relation to the museum patrons.

Tomás Saraceno's Stillness in Motion - Cloud Cities

It was wonderful learning about a new artist, and experiencing his work in-person. It was an inspiring visit that helped jump-start my creativity.

Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors at the Hirshhorn

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

As an artist, I’m constantly finding inspiration around me. Sometimes that inspiration comes from the beautiful sights I see when I travel or go for walks, and other times it comes from unique experiences I have. This past weekend I was lucky enough to get tickets to see the popular Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit at the Hirshhorn. It was an incredibly inspiring show.

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

The exhibit consists of five small rooms where two to three people are allowed inside for twenty or thirty seconds. Each room made me feel like I was exploring a new world. The rooms were covered in mirrors and had either lights or sculptures arranged in a pattern that was repeated infinitely in the mirrored walls.

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

My museum visit lasted hours. My tickets were for 12:30pm but we weren’t admitted until after 1:30pm. The entire show required waiting in line for a chunk of time before we were able to enter each of the five rooms. Although there was a lot of waiting involved, I thought it was well worth it. Only once in a while do I find myself going to an art exhibit where afterwards it leaves me marveling at the beauty of the world. Kusama’s exhibit left me feeling just that- and it left me feeling hopeful, with my imagination reenergized.

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

So if you have a chance to see Kusama’s work, I highly recommend doing so. Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors exhibit was an experience like no other.

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors exhibit

WONDER at the Renwick Gallery

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Last month I had a chance to stop by the WONDER exhibit at Renwick Gallery. I was really impressed by what I saw there, and decided to revisit the exhibit the other day with a friend. WONDER is definitely one of the more inspiring exhibits I’ve seen in the DC area, simply because the artwork was so marvelous. Each piece made a loud statement, and I liked each piece for its own complexity and beauty.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Patrick Dougherty’s willow saplings looked like magical swirls of nature.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

One of my favorite pieces of the entire show was Gabriel Dawe’s Plexus. I absolutely loved how he used thread to create a beautiful rainbow.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Tara Donovan’s installation included mounds of index cards that were stacked in such a way that they were reminiscent of rock formations.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Another one of my favorite pieces was Janet Echelman’s knotted and braided fiber with programmable lighting and wind movement from above. I loved how the installation was constantly changing colors. I felt like I was visiting another world when I looked up at the braided colors.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

John Grade’s Middle Fork was a beautifully made sculpture from reclaimed red cedar. I thought it was poetic that he created a new tree from the remains of a former tree.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Maya Lin’s Folding the Chesapeake was composed of marbles that formed organic shapes the sprawled across the floor and along the walls of the exhibit space.

WONDER at Renwick Gallery

Overall I thought WONDER was a gorgeous show, and I’m really glad I went to see it a couple of times. I feel really lucky to live in the DC area, where the Smithsonian provides free admission for these shows. This was definitely one of my favorites exhibits to date.