This is where I stash photos and notes on shows I've attended, along with links for upcoming shows I don't want to miss. Feel free to add your comments.

Shows seen in 2016

“Synthetically Natural” from Code Kitchen

With Abandon: Works by SDSU Alumni 2011-2016 at SDSU Downtown Gallery.

Ashley Fenderson, Ghost at SDSU Downtown Gallery. She is one to watch.

The Uses of Photography: Art, Politics and the Reinvention of a Medium at MCASD.

Ingram Ober and Marisol Rendón, The Secondary Intent at Space 4 Art. Included in my top picks for the UT Fall Preview. 

Standard Fantastic Studios: For the Love of God Watch These Movies at SD Art Institute Project Space.

Flat Earth at Ship in the Woods.

DeLIMITations at MCASD.

Ruben Ochoa, Watching, Waiting, Commiserating at MCASD.

Moris, Hermoso Paisaje at MCASD. 

Papel Chicano Dos at MCASD.

Patty Ortiz, Work Won’t Kill You at Art Produce Gallery.

With Abandon: Works by SDSU Alumni 2011 – 2016 at SDSU Downtown Gallery.

Quilts and Color at San Diego Museum of Art.

Mingei of Japan at Mingei International Museum.

The Erik Gronborg Experience at Mingei International Museum.

Shoulders to Stand On: Remembering the Chicana Activist Narrative at Women’s History Museum.

Not Quite Nothing at San Diego Art Institute.

Defying Darkness: Photography at Night at MOPA. Included in my Spring Preview for the Union-Tribune.

With Everything: SDSU Open Studios, Spring Edition at SDSU School of Art + Design.

The Lore Behind the Roar: 100 Years of the San Diego Zoo at San Diego History Center.

Party Lines: the History, Art and Politics of Editorial Cartoons at SDSU Downtown Gallery.

New Contemporaries 2016 at San Diego City College.

Of Animal Importance at San Diego History Center. Beautiful show that deserves more attention. Curated by the multi-talented Tara Centybear.

Angela Kallus at Lux Art Institute. My story for the Union-Tribune.

First Folio at San Diego Central Library Art Gallery.

Laddie John Dill: Light Sentences and Light Traps at Oceanside Museum of Art.

Robin Bright/Tom Driscoll: A Dual Retrospective at Oceanside Museum of Art.

Marjorie Nodelman: San Diego Artist at Oceanside Museum of Art. Strong show, weak title.

In Dust We Trust: The Parkeology Exhibition at San Diego Art Institute.

Melissa Walters, A New Stellar Order at Teros Gallery.

Brush and Ink at San Diego Museum of Art.

East Coast, West Coast and In-Between: Harry Sternberg and America at San Diego Museum of Art.

Speculative Landscapes: The Photography of Connie Samaras at UCSD. Loved this show.

Science Fiction, Science Future at Reuben H. Fleet Science Center.

Michael James Armstrong, 4:2 at Quint Projects.

Peter Halasz, Séance at Quint Projects.

Allied Craftsmen 2016 at Sparks Gallery.

David White, The Aesthetics of Soft Colonies at Space 4 Art. 

Dossier Thalamus, group show of graduating UCSD MFA students, at MCASD.

Stigma Fog, Angela Jennings’ MFA thesis show at UCSD.

Looking Back/Forward at Art Produce.

Feminism Now at Gallery D.

Filmatic Festival at UCSD.

2015 San Diego Art Prize: Wendy Maruyama with Peter Scheidt; Roy McMakin with Kevin Inman at La Jolla Athenaeum.

14th Annual SDSU Art Council Scholarship Exhibition at La Jolla Athenaeum.

Sweet Gongs Vibrating at San Diego Art Institute.

Bhavna Mehta, Body 1.0 at Bay Park Press.

BYOB: Bring Your Own Beamer at Horton Plaza.

Do Ho Suh at MCASD. Included in my roundup for the Union-Tribune’s Spring Arts Preview. 

Brueghel to Canaletto at San Diego Museum of Art. My story for the Union-Tribune: “When the art world changed.”

Finnbogi Pétursson, “Dream” at Quint Projects.

Cathedrals at SDSU Downtown Gallery. I wrote about it for the Union-Tribune and the San Diego Tourism Authority.

Taping Shape at Reuben H. Fleet Science Center. Also included in my piece for the San Diego Tourism Authority.

Latin American Art Festival at Liberty Station. Some good booths but poorly organized. This festival’s management does not live up to the quality of the participating artists.

Cannibals: Myth and Reality at San Diego Museum of Man. Included in my roundup for the Union-Tribune’s Spring Arts Preview. 

Energy: Made in Form at SDSU Downtown Gallery. This was the first piece I wrote for the Union-Tribune this year: “Pulsating with ‘Energy'”

Posted May 23, 2016 11:12 pm ·
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2015 Recap


Ernesto Neto at MCASD Downtown.

Shinpei Takeda, Inscription, New Americans Museum.

Date Night, Horton Plaza.

The Alchemist and his Junks, HB Punto Experimental.

Recent Acquisitions, La Jolla Athenaeum.

Eloise Duff: Where We Went, La Jolla Athenaeum.

TRACES: photographs by Ame CurtissSpace4Art.

Karl Pilato, Emergent Traces, Bread & Salt.

Fall 2015 Student Show, Mesa College Art Gallery.

Presence: Selections from the Matthew and Iris Strauss Family Foundation CollectionSDSU Downtown.

Cross City, La Bodega.

Common Space, City Gallery.

Convergence, by Ship in the Woods at Cabrillo Monument.

David Wing: A San Diego Retrospective, Sparks Gallery. Article by Seth Combs for CityBeat.

Eureka!, New Children’s Museum.

Women’s Work: Masculinity and Gender in Contemporary Fiber Art, San Diego Art Institute.

AB12: Abstract San Diego, City Gallery.

Worth A Shot, Daphne Hill at Art Produce.

Jose Hugo Sanchez, Transpoiesis, San Diego Mesa College Art Gallery.

Pond Lily Over Mushroom Cloud: Byron KimMCASD Downtown.

John D. Spreckels and The Impossible Railroad, MCASD Downtown.

Anya Gallaccio, MCASD Downtown.

A Long Engagement: Wendy Maruyama and Her Students, SDSU University Gallery

Frank Lloyd Wright and the Taliesin ApprenticesLa Jolla Historical Society.

Some Assembly Required: A Re-Collection of Community, Oceanside Museum of Art.

Artist Alliance at the Museum 2015, Oceanside Museum of Art.

BB Bastidas: Altering Altars, Oceanside Museum of Art.

In the Abstract: Midcentury San Diego Painting and Sculpture, Oceanside Museum of Art.

Baby Tattoo: Carnival of Astounding Art, Oceanside Museum of Art.

Bhavna Mehta, Gush, Oceanside Museum of Art.

Esteban Aldrete, Hospital de Mexico, Teros Gallery.

ArchipelagoHelmuth Projects.

Stacie Birky Greene, Archive, Point Loma Library.

One Cannot Look: Graphic Wars, MCASD La Jolla.

San Diego Collects, MCASD La Jolla.

It’s Just Surfing, Part III, La Bodega Gallery.

Becky Guttin, Pan de Todos los Dias, disclosed unLocation Gallery.

Becky Guttin, A Tiny Space of Silence, Low Gallery. 

Vabianna Santos, Floodplain, Helmuth Projects.

Response, Space 4 Art.

Cathy Breslaw: Macro Views, Micro WondersSan Diego Mesa College Art Gallery.

Kelsey Brookes, Quint Gallery.

Faculty + OneCity Gallery.

Iván Abreu, Looming, at The Front. Excellent show. Added surprise was the music by Pepe Mogt. 

Ephemeral Objects, San Diego Art Institute.

Virginia Beahan: Elegy for an Ancient SeaMCASD.

Carnival and Bijou, Joseph Bellows Gallery.

Women’s WorkR.B. Stevenson Gallery.

24th Annual Juried Exhibition, Athenaeum Music & Arts Library.

Summer Group Exhibition at Quint Gallery.

Peter Geise: Flora-Dora Babylon at Planet Rooth. 

Here | Hear at Space 4 Art.

Matthew Mahoney’s installation at Disclosed unLocation.

(Con)Text: Rethinking Language in Art at San Diego Art Institute.

100 Artists, 100 Years: The San Diego Museum of Art Artists Guild, 1915-2015 at Oceanside Museum of Art.

Squeak Carnwath at Lux Art Institute.

Prospect 2015, MCASD La Jolla.

Laugh-in: Art, Comedy, Performance, MCASD La Jolla.

Unfettered at Low Gallery.

Marvel vs DC at La Bodega Gallery.

Peter Halasz, Silence, at Quint Gallery.

Coney Island, Visions of an American Dreamland at San Diego Museum of Art.

Lalla Essaydi: Photographs at San Diego Museum of Art.

Hide and Seek: Exploring the Abstract at Woodbury University School of Architecture.

Vincent Robles, Linked, Not an Exit Gallery.

Neil Kendricks and Carlos Pelayo, Wounded Sky, Not an Exit Gallery. 

Lael Corbin, Nest, Not an Exit Gallery.

Armando De La Torre, Anonimato, Not an Exit Gallery. 

May-Ling Martinez, Knotted, Not an Exit Gallery.

Sup! Port Us, Ship in the Woods’ benefit auction.

Don Porcella, Shapeshifter, at Low Gallery. The longer I stayed, the more I loved the show.

Coast to Cactus at the San Diego Natural History Museum.

What Remains: Debris and Detritus in Fine Art, San Diego Art Institute.

The Art of Comic-Con, San Diego Central Library.

Lynn Susholtz, 3 Objects 3 Poisons 3 Seeds of Virtue, La Jolla Athenaeum. A gracious goodbye to her mother, who passed away this year.

Alexis Smith, Chandlerisms, La Jolla Athenaeum. Didn’t work for me.

Chris Warr, Pointing Itself, Helmuth Projects.

Playful InteractionsSDSU Downtown Gallery.

New Contemporaries VIII, Casa Valencia Gallery.

Dear Nemesis, Nicole Eisenman 1993–2013MCASD.

Sarah Cain, blue in your body, red when it hits the airMCASD.

[Un]Bound: Artists’ Books from the Athenaeum, San Diego Central Library.

Artistic Research, UCSD Visual Arts Faculty Exhibition.

Friends Press, UCSD ARTifact Gallery.

Elizabeth Stringer, My Meditations End in Reverie, UCSD Geisel Library.

(i) paalam, eight UCSD students examining their Pinay identity. Stumbled across it at Adam Kamil Gallery. A little gem.

SDSU Open Studios, May 8. A good first effort.

50 to Watch, The Studio Door.

What Was Is at La Jolla Historical Society. James Brown envisions dismantling La Jolla’s dilapidated cottages, Red Roost and Red Rest, in a land art piece of salvage, sacrifice and renewal. Other works by Mathieu Gregoire, David Jurist, Jean Lowe, Roman de Salvo, Roy McMakin, Tom Mulica, Jennifer Luce, James Enos, Emily Hicks and Bruna Mori.

Joe Nyiri and Keith Stephens, Two Guys Paint, Pacific Beach Library. Deeply disappointing.

Women at War, Grossmont College Hyde Gallery.

A Thousand Plates at SDSU Downtown.

Transduction at Canvas Gallery. If Nichole Speciale had a fan club, I would join in a heartbeat.

Mindy Solis, An Extended Stay at the Time Travel Motel, Helmuth Projects.

Naked at OMA. The paintings were only half the story — the other half was the wall text about local artists who seem to have dropped off the map.

Masterworks: Art of the Exposition Era at San Diego History Center.

The Visual Elastic: Cartoon Aesthetics from the Permanent Collection at MCASD. Why wasn’t this scheduled during Comic-Con?

Reshaping the 2% – Contemporary Ceramics at San Diego Mesa College. Elegant show; was pleased to learn about Julie York.

San Diego Keeps Her Promise: Balboa Park at 100 at San Diego Art Institute.

MAS Attack at San Diego Art Institute.

Universal Dissolvent at San Diego Art Institute.

Flex It at the Jacobs Center.

HeLa Studies (Forever Again) at HB Punto Experimental. Sculpture based on the story of Henrietta Lacks.

Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsuiat MCASD. Review by Angela Carone for KPBS.

California Dreaming at OMA. Why wasn’t there an outcry over Barbara Sexton’s piece being removed?

Intervention at Ship in the Woods. The Jolly Rancher piece: color candies soaked in water, piled up against a window, jewel-like, slowly sliding down as the night went on. Also, Ingram Ober.

Cognitive Camouflage at Ship in the Woods. A blowout party and a turning point in WSOHOIDPS’s maturation as an alternative space. Review by Alex Jen for the Torrey Pines High School Falconer.

State Park at UCSD. So nice to see work by my dear friend Brian Zimmerman, curated by Mike Calway-Fagen.

the spoils, with Carlos Castro Arias and J Noland at Space4Art. A contender for my “best of 2015” list.

Castles in the Sky at Low Gallery.

Spun: Adrienne Outlaw at Low Gallery.

Terrestrial, City College Gallery.

Jack Whitten: Five Decades of Painting, at MCASD.

Rita McBride: Public Tilt, at MCASD.

This is How We Walk on the Moon: Colter Jacobsen, at MCASD.

Feminist Image Group, Beyond the Landscape, Encinitas Community and Senior Center.

Marcos Ramirez ERRE, Playing Series Serious, SDSU Downtown.


Reflections on Water, Palm Springs Art Museum.

PHOTOLAB: Michael Field: Designer, Hiker, Photographer, Imperial Valley Desert Museum.

John Elgin Woolf: Master of Hollywood Regency, Palos Verdes Art Center.

Summoning Ghosts: The Art of Hung Liu, Palm Springs Art Museum. Exquisite.

Taking Shape: Modern Works from the Permanent Collection, Palm Springs Art Museum. Muddled and muddy.

Eye on Design: Andrea Zittel, Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center.

Personalities: Fantasy and Identity in Photography and New Media, Palm Springs Art Museum in Palm Desert.

Ai Weiwei, Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads: Gold, Palm Springs Art Museum.

Jennifer Karady: In Country, Soldiers’ Stories from Iraq and Afghanistan, Palm Springs Art Museum.


Sinking, Sinking, Sinking: SDAI Winter Exhibition

Wayne Thiebaud, By Hand: Works on Paper from 1965 – 2015, USD Hoehn Family Galleries. Review by Robert Pincus for KCET Artbound.

Size Matters at Low Gallery. 

Sweeping Close at Space4Art.

Gregory Crewdson: Dream House at SDMA.

Electricity (and other things I may have dreamt), Meegan Nolan, Low Gallery. 

Gone Paintin’, Friends Collective, California Suites Hotel.

Anna Stump, Chula Vistan, at Art Produce.

Art From the Collection of Jonathan Green and Richard Weedman at SDSU Downtown.

Dream City: The 1915 Panama-California Exposition at MOPA.

 7 billion Others at MOPA.

Word Balloons: Comics at San Diego State University, SDSU Downtown Gallery.

Raphael, The Madonna of the Pinks at the Timken.

Jonny Alexander, What We Choose to Believe at Thumbprint Gallery.

Ebony G. Patterson at Lux Institute.

Megablock at San Diego Space4Art.

Patrick Shield’s, In/Exterior, Not an Exit Gallery.

Matthew Bradley, i know what i saw, Helmuth Projects.

Drawn: West Coast Drawing at Cannon Art Gallery.

Posted March 6, 2015 2:45 pm · Tags: ,
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MCASD’s “25 and Under” Art Contest

I was honored to be asked to judge the third year of this contest from the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego. There were several excellent pieces and the skill level was impressive. Public voting is open until noon, June 4. They need a better name for the contest, though. Maybe “MCASD: First Quarter”?

Contest description and rules.


A sample: Look Closely, colored pencil by Jose Antonio Lopez Vergara, age 19. 

Look Closely

Posted May 29, 2014 10:56 pm · Tags: ,
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Adding these to my go-see list.

Eye on Public Art: San Diego County Waterfront Park

Baja and Beijing Cross Cultures  – TJ in China Project Space

Neko, Paradiso Perduto, closes June 14 – Left Hand Black

Figment, June 28 – Chicano Park

Fringe Festival, July 3-13 – Spreckels Theatre

 I missed these but want to keep track of the artist:

Nichole Speciale, The Sky Calls to Us

Jesse Harding, CHROMO | CHRONO

Leslie Nemour, Betwixt

Posted 5:07 pm · Tags: , , ,
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Kathleen Mitchell and Rich Stewart
Glashaus, May 3 - June 28 2014

Glashaus looks like it’s roaring back to life under the steady management of Rondi Vasquez. The beautiful Barrio Logan warehouse, with its curved timber roof and glass factory past, seemed to go dormant for awhile after co-founder Greg Brotherton moved back to LA. Now there’s a waiting list for studios and the airy central space is again being used for exhibits.

Kathleen Mitchell and Rich Stewart’s names were new to me, so I stopped by for a quick look before the show opened. According to their website, both were instructors at UCSD Crafts Center. Kathleen taught glassblowing and lampworking, and Rich taught metal casting.

The duo’s work fit beautifully into the Glashaus setting. It’s reminiscent of Brotherton’s sculptures, with similar touches of steampunk. Coppery surfaces, barbed wire, wood accents, and weathered found objects — but lightened by Kathleen’s blown glass. It’s a tricky vein to mine. One rooster too far and a piece could slip into whimsical twee. Then there’s the nostalgia of found objects, and whether to respect or reinvent their purpose. Something once valued was lost or thrown away, and each piece carries that weight. Is that why there are so many cages in this show? The items nestled inside – are they resting comfortably in their new homes? Are they now precious, reclaiming the status of being on display? Or are they trapped?

There’s no question about Kathleen’s Golden Child. Eerie blue eyes look up, his hands caught in straitjacket of rough fabric, a cloud of shattered light bulbs around his feet. This child is ensnared by external expectations, unable to move.

Kathleen Mitchell, "Golden Child"

The title, Inchoate, didn’t seem to fit the show – unless, perhaps, Kathleen and Rich intend to dive deeper into the darker territory of Golden Child and this was their first attempt. Kathleen may be up for it; she likes the dangerous aspect of glassblowing. Let’s hope they continue to explore more risky, fertile, psychological concepts like this one.

Posted May 12, 2014 3:50 pm · Tags: ,
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