Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

We had a relaxing "last day of summer," shelling at the beach, making a scarecrow, and scaring little kids during our trick-or-treat marathon.
Remember your dead tomorrow, or else…

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mountains and Valleys

I’m showing my work a lot these days. Small one-night shows, big shows, dealers, students, plodding public, enthusiastic friends. I’m in a gallery exhibition opening tomorrow night, an installation of my grandmother’s pink lace dress with paintings of me wearing it. Am showing the Greek work in LA. Someone is coming to see my new series tomorrow in my studio.
Still, nothing sells. No one, anywhere, is buying.
I was accepted to a small show yesterday, but my application for a more respectable venue was rejected today. It’s the problem of figuration—still not OK for a serious gallery to deal with the body in SoCal. I don’t know what to do about this. I can’t really paint what is fashionable, or be a conceptual artist and feel fulfilled.
Anyway, last weekend at the big ArtWalk I got lots of comments about my work, people seemed to respond and be curious. Need to follow up on a few cards. Another day. Have houseguests from Austria and Italy here, am busy making coffee and pouring wine. They seem to think I live some kind of charmed life, when I know better.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Transport Me Back to Istanbul, Not Constantinople

Gotta sick kid (even the slightest cough is not welcome in the schools right now), so spent the day making chicken soup, driving around, and getting not much done.
Feel like transporting to a beautiful place: my friend’s five story Armenian house on the European side in one of the liveliest neighborhoods of Istanbul. It’s all made of wood, completely restored, with a spiral staircase down the center. From the top floor you can see the Golden Horn. She’s filled it with love, 10 cats, one dog and turtles we were unable to locate.
My friend is also having a well-deserved and unexpected success as a fashion designer in Second Life. In other words, she’s selling “clothes” for avatars that exist only in cyber space. Amazing.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Another Californian on Higher Ed

I was sent a link to this blog and thought my readers might like more insight into what’s happening to higher education in California. It’s not just the arts that are so badly slashed. I predict it will soon take the average student eight to ten years to get a “four-year” degree (currently it takes about six years to get through the Cal State system). The crazy thing is, it will be cheaper to go to private schools at this rate.
Parents and students, revolt!
Strange painting by Edouard Vuillard at the Met.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Me, Not Me, Me

I know this blog seems so much about my small life and concerns. Artists are typically egocentric, and shy Kloe is no exception. If you don’t self-promote, nothing will happen and no one will notice you or your work.
So after a weekend of talking nothing except about myself and my work, I need to dig a hole and cover myself with cool dirt, maybe grow something, maybe paint, maybe do some good deeds.
Piece of decoration from Pergamon, 2000 years old, give or take.

Friday, October 23, 2009


Wow, all of a sudden I’m extremely busy showing my work. I don’t know if it’s just circumstance, or I’ve finally reached some kind of critical mass in terms of making connections. It doesn’t hurt that I’m only teaching one class right now and can concentrate on making and promoting my work, as well as curate shows for my groups.
Anyway, I’m up in LA, showing my “Greek Sculpture” series and small gouache nudes at the Brewery ArtWalk this weekend. Next weekend am showing this installation, “Pink Dress,” at Edgewater Gallery in San Diego. Am painting the dress on top of the nudes. The idea of this show is that the work is partially created by the artists IN the gallery. Sort of cool.
Hope to get good, interesting comments, and even sell something here or there.

Monday, October 19, 2009

You Count

As you may have noticed, I added a map gadget to count the visits by country to this blog. I’d experimented with counters before, but found them too difficult (or maybe I really just didn’t want to know how many, or how few, readers Kloe has). A visual map is somehow less serious.
Anyway, I’m truly thrilled to see dots from Central and South America, the Middle East, India (!), Australia, all over Europe.
Of course, some of you I know, but many of you I don’t. I’m wondering why you might look at Kloe...
Are you, like me, trying to lead a creative life in this world that doesn’t value the effort?
Are you an artist mom, a teacher, a lover of chickens/hamsters/worms (I think I killed my worms!!!)?
Are you trying to make art, find the time/money/energy to get into the studio, like me?
Are you a Turkophile?
Traveler, cook, writer, all those activities of the civilized life?
Well, if you have a blog, let me know so I can check it out. I haven’t updated my blogroll in forever, and I’ll put you on there.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Society Pictures, Framed

I started framing a few of the “Society Pictures,” which until now have just been tacked to my studio wall. Because they’re gouache on paper, they have to be framed behind glass (too bad, I love the mat surface of the paint). I want to emphasize how small they are, so am thinking black frame with lots of white space around them. What do you think?
I framed my favorite one, two big-busted ladies, one in leopard, one in zebra. I want to go out in animal skin…

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

What Dave Hickey Said, or Odalisque on your Head

I attended a lecture by art critic, collector, and curator Dave Hickey, who has basically put Las Vegas on the Artworld Map. As I face the prospect of trying to sell something, anything, in several upcoming shows (hence the art/craft hats), I post his advice to collectors:
• Buy art of artists you like that other people, who are powerful and influential, also like and collect. If a hillbilly in Arkansas likes the work, THAT DOESN’T MATTER.
• Don’t talk about quality or meaning of an artwork with a dealer or gallerist, cause that makes the price of the work go up. You’re just there to buy a piece of crap, just ask for the price and then shut up.
• Nothing teaches you more about yourself that losing money buying art.
• The Art World is a Social World—you have to be there. You can’t see it online, or through the phone. You must interact.
This last thing is so true. How to get people, including my pretty little butt, off the couch to see and buy Art?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

White, White Marble

Saw a fantastic show at LUX, a private art museum/artist residency program, by Elizabeth Turk. This institution tends to bring in conceptual artists who also practice precision craft, and Turk is no exception. Gorgeous marble sculptures like toothpaste squeezed in a pile, or crazed rib-cages. They are called “Collars.” No photos, so see them here.
Marble sculpture isn’t taught in America much anymore, but it’s alive and well in Turkey, as you can see from this student sculpture yard at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in Istanbul.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Topkapi Sarayi

View of Beyoglu, "new" European side of Istanbul, with Galata Tower in distance, across the Golden Horn. Shot from Topkapi.
Handpainted tiles from the palace, the residence of the sultans of the Ottoman Empire from mid 1400s to mid 1800s.
Now don’t you want to get yourself to Istanbul? PLAN IT, YOU WON'T BE SORRY!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Worm Palace

As you may remember if you’re following my soil-making attempts, I had a beehive in my trashcan composter, so had to throw it away (bee residue would only attract more.)
In California there’s a movement to make composting mandatory, which totally makes me laugh—you can’t even find composters at most garden shops, let alone Home Depot or Lowes. You can order them online, but they cost around $200 plus a hefty shipping fee.
So my specialty nursery (City Farmers, it’s amazing) convinced me to try worms. (His first suggestion was a horse, haha). I’m keeping a small, regular hot compost in addition.
Think worms are easy? The instruction booklet is about 20 pages long! I’m hoping the little guys are OK, they are hiding right now.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009


Why is that some days I can paint well, but some days everything I touch is a !#X%$#X## DISASTER???

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

OK, Back to Serious

If you’re worried, the worms are fine…
Throughout the Biennial there were red paper flyers, wrinkled up and thrown on the floor. If you picked one up, which I didn’t see many people doing, it was a list of injustices against women in Turkey, including honor killings, by Croatian artist Sanja Iveković.
In one of the school rooms there was an installation by Lado Darakhvelikze called “Ideal Media.” He was born in Kutaisi and lives in Arnhem. (I had no idea where either of these places is. So much for being educated… Georgia, on my list for places to visit.) Funny drawings on chalkboards and little videos, about how media coverage affects events. The school benches were on rockers, a nice touch.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Drivel and Chocolate

Can’t concentrate on art tonight, am not in my usual serious mood.
It was Biscuit’s birthday last night (we are both 29…), Kid.01 made lava cakes. Nearly singed both our hair.
Oh, and got worms today!

Sunday, October 04, 2009

800th Post

I digress from musing about art half-way ‘round the world to talk about art in my own hood. Curated a small show for my women’s group. As usual, no one sold anything (it was in an alternative space, not a gallery), but it was fun (can you tell I’m trying to convince myself fun is important?). I really don’t know what to do about all of us out of work and not selling, but that doesn’t seem to affect the quality of the work.
My own kid.02 had a small show of his masks outside on the sidewalk. He sold, $5 per mask. The lessons he learned were worth much more—that hard work can pay off, that others value what he creates, that he can overcome shyness. Plus people got some really cool Halloween masks.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Naim June Paik

Paik was the “big name” of the Biennial, and one of the only American representatives. Shown were several dozen “Life” magazines, each with a speech bubble coming from the cover figure, often about Paik’s sex life, dinner plans, or art events. Very low key and funny.
Fluxus stuff fit right into the flow of the show.