A Critter Invasion in the Monster Dungeon!

Production in Chris Ryniak’s studio is in full swing once again, filling up with piles of bulb-eyed pals for us all to squeal over. Watercolour monsters, gouache critters on cardboard, along with a small congregation of little resin critters are all in the works, and the latter has me particularly curious, indeed. Just look at those little bums!

Question is, what ever is all this for? Well, there are a couple notable events CMR is involved in, namely Circus Annual in December and Migration with Amanda Louise Spayd in March (*wink*), but only time will tell when these guys come out to play. So stick around, for plenty more is sure to emerge from the Monster Dungeon!

Kathie Olivas’s Winter Cat & Winter Rabbit Studies for Circus Annual, 12.7

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Kathie Olivas has both two- and three-dimensional goodness in the works for Circus Annual, Stranger Factory’s holiday invitational opening next month. Kicking things off are Winter Cat and Winter Rabbit, two new graphite and acrylic on wood studies with domed resin finish. The each measure 6″ x 12″ x 2″. Pricing is TBA. Those floppy rabbit ears get me every. single. time.

Circus Annual opens Dec. 7th with a reception from 6-9pm. Party’s on until the end of the month!


Rum-Pa-Pum-Pum: Derek Yaniger’s Aloha & Hukilau Hand Drums!

Grab your ukuleles and leis, Albuquerque, because Stranger Factory’s hosting a luau this December! For his upcoming sideshow exhibition, A One-Way Ticket to FlipsvilleDerek Yaniger has transformed two real-deal hand drums into gorgeous, retro-and-Tiki inspired paintings. The Aloha (above) and Hukilau hand drums are each painted with acrylics and measure 12″ x 12″ and 22″ x 22″, respectively. Now all we need are those fruity drinks with little umbrellas. Should beat the winter blahs, no?

A One Way Ticket to Flipsville and Circus Annual open Dec. 7th with an opening reception from 6 to 9pm.

Kathie Olivas & Brandt Peters for ‘Awakened’ Charity Show @ AFA NYC, 9.20

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As part of Alix Sloan’s “Awakened” charity group exhibition opening Sept. 20 at AFA NYC, Kathie Olivas and Brandt Peters are contributing “Beloved”, 20″x30″ oil on linen painting.

“Awakened” is a special, 10-day charity exhibition and fundraising event inspired by the companions in our lives. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to, an international initiative driven to finding homes for homeless pets. The exhibition also doubles as a celebration for the release of Sloan’s “Pet Sitter: A Jenna Stack Mystery,” a novel co-authored with writer Amy Eyrie.

Exhibiting artists include: Jessicka Addams, Jennybird Alcantara, Nicole Alvarez, Nana An, Jean-Pierre Arboleda, Carrie Anne Baade, Rebekah Bogard, Mia Brownell, Tim Burton, Bill Carman, Bryan Cunningham, Jason D’Aquino, Michelle Doll, Peter Drake, Nicole Etienne, Tom Everhart, Eric Finzi, Marc Finzi, Erik Foss, Camille Rose Garcia, Theodor Geisel, Kady Grant, Leontine Greenberg, Linda Griggs, Gris Grimly, Evan B. Harris, Jason Holley, Anthony Iacono, Kate Javens, Lisa Lebofsky, Travis Louie, Julia Marchand, Elizabeth McGrath, Daniel Merriam, Gabriela Mesa-Jonassen, Scott Musgrove, Joshua Petker, Ransom & Mitchell, Kirk Reinert, Martha Rich, Paul Richard, Ron Richter, Chris Roberts-Antieu, Jean-Pierre Roy, Jonny Ruzzo, Isabel Samaras, Charles M. Schulz, Ryan Scully, Maurice Sendak, Heather Sherman, Nathan Skiles, Sally Sloan, Aaron Smith, Owen Smith, Nathan Spoor, Jonathan Viner, Melanie Vote, Lindsey Way, Casey Weldon, Eric White and Brad Woodfin.

In addition to the original artwork submitted for the exhibition, rare prints from Nicoletta Ceccoli, Tom Everhart, Shepard Fairey, Marion Peck and others will be up for grabs in a live auction. The opening reception for “Awakened” is Sept. 22nd, 5pm to 8pm.

Tonal Illustration Workshop with Travis Louie @ Stranger Factory 8.5

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As part of his Spirits exhibition opening next month at Stranger Factory, renowned fine artist Travis Louie is hosting a very special, small-group rendering workshop at the gallery on Sunday, Aug. 5th from 3pm to 6pm.

The class will introduce students to basic and intermediate multi-medium illustration techniques, as well as instruction in tonal rendering using graphite, liquid graphite, ink washes pastels and gouache on paper. The rendering of light and form will be explored, as well as drawing from a still life set up.

The cost of the workshop is $100 (supplies included) and space is limited to only a dozen spots. To RSVP, stop by or call the gallery at (505) 508-3049, or Paypal to (make sure to add ‘Travis Louie Workshop’ as the subject line). A 50% deposit is required (non refundable).

** Bring a notebook if you want to take your own notes during the workshop. Photos and video must be approved by Stranger Factory staff in advance.

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to learn direct from the master in an up-close and intimate setting!

Kathie Olivas & Travis Lampe for Urban Decay III 6.2

The third annual Urban Decay group exhibition is a little over a week away and Kathie Olivas & Travis Lampe have set the bar with four beautiful originals.

Kathie has chosen to mix things up, offering both 2- and 3-dimensional works, including a small wood painting (these are typically 8″x4.5″) and an Octopus Girl, which never ceases to amaze.

And then there’s this beauty. I’m pretty sure I’ll never grow tired of the 4-legged sculpt; it’s brilliantly executed and exudes such character, even when unpainted: the poised body and slight bow of the head suggest a cunning and mischief, and I like that so many of CP’s toys possess that ability to ‘speak’. I can totally see this fella slinking about the pathways of some acidic dreamland. This particular Masao is a custom bronze jobby for the exhibition. (Bronze painted, not cast … but hot damn that’d be sweet!)

Then, there’s poor Mr. Reginald from Travis Lampe, who seems to have fallen victim to the weight of his own head. Or maybe he’s paralyzed with fear at the sight of someone approaching with a match. Either way: aww. Looks like me every time I’m writing to deadline.

This bombastic bloke is of the sizable variety, too: 14″ all the way around, and acrylic on wood (I’m sure there are a few jokes in there). I’m quite fond of him and his unrelenting look of terror.

Urban Decay III kicks off June 1st through June 27th at the Workhouse in Lorton, VA. Opening reception June 2nd from 7 to 11pm! For more sneaks, visit Urban Decay’s Flickr page.

New Paintings by Kathie Olivas for Monsters & Misfits II

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Aside from the numerous original sculpts being showcased at the Monsters & Misfits II exhibition opening this Friday in Japan (about 60, collectively), Kathie Olivas also has a handful of oil paintings up for grabs. Shown above is “Constance”, a 16″x20″ oil on panel.

Next is “Pitchfork”, a 4.5″x8″ oil on wood.

And rounding out the trio is  “Exhale”, also a 4.5″x8″ oil on wood.

The gang left LAX for Japan’s Haneda airport late yesterday. Here’s hoping the flight was (somewhat) restful! Monsters & Misfits II opens April 13th at the Kusakabe Folk Museum in Takayama, Japan.

Stranger Factory Presents: Andrew Bell & Kelly Denato’s THE GREAT ESCAPE, April 6th

Ladies, gents, freaks, geeks and neighbourhood gentle giants! I hope you’ve been saving your pennies because April is turning into quite the big deal here in CP land. You’ve been hearing plenty about Circus Posterus’ Japan group exhibition, Monsters & Misfits II, along with Amanda Louise Spayd’s solo show, Forgotten Finery, at Rivet Gallery. But it doesn’t stop there: crashing smack-dab in the middle of the action is The Great Escape from Andrew Bell and Kelly Denato, kicking off April 6th at Stranger Factory. The dynamic duo are blowing into town to show off their newest 2- and 3-dimension works and given the WIPs and teasers that have been circulating around the web these past few weeks, it’s going to be a doozy (fingers crossed for no site crashes this round!). Here’s a snippet from the press release:

The debilitating feeling of heartbreak; the self-destructive spiral of past emotions and memories; the overwhelming feeling of social suffocation — they’re the less gracious experiences in life that we all inevitably encounter and Andrew Bell and Kelly Denato bring them to the fore in The Great Escape – an exhibition of new drawings, paintings and sculptures from the Brooklyn-based artists.

Combining tragic humor and delicate elegance, the artists wade the terrain of a new reality: a reality of pushing forward after shedding the skin of a previous life – be it a love left behind or old fears and insecurities now put to rest.

Many creatures in nature possess innate defense mechanisms – poison, quills, ink, spots, stripes, white winter coats. People on the other hand must create them. Oftentimes it’s not a predator we are trying to evade but ourselves; we are bundles of electricity, blood, and spirit – constantly moving, feeling, thinking, sweating, breathing. Our bodies are both containment and confinement.  The circumstances that keep us contained, confined, and safe are as thin and delicate as ribbons. – Kelly Denato

Very exciting stuff is in store for us next month! Enjoy the handful of Great Escape preview images below and stay tuned for more sneaks in the coming days!

Travis Louie’s ‘Night People’ for ‘Obey Your Master’ 1.20

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Believe it or not, but … this is Travis Louie’s first-ever zombie painting. Seriously. Does this shock you? This shocks me. It shocks me! This is a man who was weaned on horror and sci-fi as a child. A man who’s artistic narrative is so completely rooted in the idea of otherworldly beings; in the stark contrast and suspenseful shadow play of Film Noir and German Expressionist films; in just plain weird (and seriously beautiful) shit.

So this piece? Long overdue. And I think Travis would agree:

“I’ve always wanted to paint a zombie painting. They have been in my dreams from the first time I saw Night of the Living Dead(1968) and Dawn of the Dead(1978). As everyone has different dream symbolism, zombies in my dreams have always represented change; “Out with the old, and in with new,” kind of change. Whenever it was time to leave a relationship or end a phase of my life I would have one of these dreams.”

Hmm. Leaves me curious as to whether ‘Night People’ is symbolic in some way. The painting is part of Exhibit A Gallery’s Obey Your Master — a Metallica tribute show which opens this evening. The band and many of the participating artists will be in attendance.

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