We had our first movie event last weekend and while it was a small crowd we had a great time! We’re looking forward to hosting another free movie next month. We have some upcoming announcements! On Friday, April 5th, Eduardo Portillo will be having his first solo show, Painting in Space, opening at HCC Northeast Northline Gallery from 6:00 – 8:30 pm. The gallery is located at 8001 Fulton Street, Houston, Texas 77022. Eduardo’s been busy transforming the gallery into something spectacular. We hope to see you there!
On Friday, April 12th we have two events simultaneously occurring! Kylene Vasquez is showing work in Urban Ink, a group exhibition, featuring some other amazing artists at the Imperial Gallery in Rosenberg, Texas from 6:00 – 9:00 pm. The gallery is located at 823 3rd Street, Rosenberg, Texas 77471. If you’re in that neck of the woods, feel free to stop by!
Last but not least, Winter and Spring Street Studios spring artists’ exhibition Art will open on Friday, April 12th from 6:00 – 10:00 pm. Artists in both studios will open their doors to greet guests and show their new work. In conjunction with the open studios, artists in both studios will participate in Boxes for Freedom, benefiting Freedom Place, a project of Arrow Child and Family Ministries. To learn more about Freedom Place, please click on the hyperlink. The Montrose Art Society (Studio #227) will have its doors open inside Spring Street Studios. Artists, Eduardo Portillo and Tony Paraná, will both participate in the Boxes for Freedom exhibition as well. We hope to see you at this great show benefiting a great cause!
Winter Street Studios is located at 2101 Winter Street, Houston, Texas 77007.
Spring Street Studios is located at 1824 Spring Street, Houston, Texas 77007.
We would love to thank 90.1 FM KPFT Houston for featuring us on Thursday evening's Living Art program! We had a blast going on air speaking about our collective, the Quattro Exhibition and art in general. Alex Tu and Michael Woodson were fabulous hosts and we enjoyed speaking with them. If you're not familiar with the station make sure to check it out!
On another note, the Quattro Exhibition last night was a huge success! We had an amazing turnout and are extremely thankful for the support around us.
*REMINDER On Saturday, March 16th from 3:00 - 5:00 pm we will be showing Goya's Ghosts (2006) directed by Milos Forman at MAS Alternative Exhibition Space (1824 Spring Street, Studio #227 Houston, Texas 77007). The movie is FREE! So, come on out if you're in the area! We'll have a small discussion after the film. Light refreshments will also be available.
Montrose Art Society is gearing up for their first big show of the year on Saturday, March 9th from 4:00 pm – 8:30 pm. We’re located in Studio #227 aka MAS Alternative Exhibition Space (second floor) inside Spring Street Studios (1824 Spring Street Houston, Texas 77007).
QUATTRO will feature new artwork by Tony Paraná, Eduardo Portillo, Nico Whittaker and Kylene Vasquez!
Feel free to check it out if you’re in the area! Also, don’t hesitate to invite others! There will be some light refreshments, music, and great artwork to see and/or purchase! In addition to having work exhibited, we will also have a print giveaway, something you don’t want to miss. We will also share information on upcoming classes we’re going to begin offering to the public and different events we’ll be hosting throughout the year. Hope to see you there!
February 9th, 2013
MAS / Studio #227
We had a very productive day at studio #227 today. Spring Street Studios opened its doors with the usual 2nd Saturday Open Studios and MAS followed up by turning on the lights to show some new works from our members Tony Paraná, Eduardo Portillo, Nico Whittaker and our brand new member Kylene Vasquez. We were very pleased to have our followers come see us.
Come see recent and current work by the group.
Farrago will be putting together a small, but special menu for our guests.
This is the group's first group show of the year.
Join us for art, drinks and conversation.
The work will remain on view through the end of May.
If you haven't had a chance to meet this Collective, now's the time.
Juliana Astral Alonso
Roberto X. Torres-Torres
Celebrate our local art scene each Thursday with Spacetaker and Boheme! Join us at Boheme from 5-10PM, when a portion of the proceeds benefits a new local non profit arts organization each week! Cultured Cocktails was named "Best Happy Hour of 2010" by the Houston Press....
Come meet the MAS Artists. Find out how this Art Collective is making it work!
Learn about each artist's individual projects as well as upcoming group events.
We will also have small prints for sale. All priced between $25 and $50.
We look forward to meeting you!
So you like art, but find the galleries daunting. This is a common problem. Art needs viewers. Art, of any sort, is dead until someone experiences it. This is true for music and literature, but it is very certainly true of the visual arts. For someone who has an eye for art, and who wants to see new works regularly, going to galleries is the best way for you to go. The art world is constantly swimming with new exhibitions and gallery shows, all of which hold opening receptions of some sort. It is these events that I want to talk about.
When an artist or a group of artists shows their work somewhere, and holds a reception/opening/event to bring people there, their hope is for an audience to show up, look at their work, and hopefully appreciate it enough to want to purchase it. For many this process is very intimidating. It should not be. I am here to help.
What should you expect from an art opening?
Let's take, for example, a group show held at a local gallery. Most art openings are free-form events, intended to allow the public to come and go as they please. There is no pressure to be there “on time,” unless it is so specified in the announcement/invitation. There is no cover charge. There may be a cash bar or there may be complimentary refreshments served. The artist(s) and/or a gallery employee are usually there, ready to introduce themselves, as well as discuss any questions you may have about their work. This type of interaction is a welcome thing for most artists, as we rarely have the opportunity to interact with the consumers of art. It is completely cool to go up to the artist and introduce yourself, and comment on their art, or ask any questions.
Think of an art show as a communication format. The artists want to communicate with you through their art and through their words. The viewing public is also given the chance to communicate what the work is or is not to them, and if they love it, to purchase said work. Aside from that, there is a communication that happens between the patrons themselves. Art is intended to move the heart and/or mind. You are there to see if this art does this. At the very least, you will be entertained. Not bad for FREE.
What is expected of you at an art opening?
First of all, your very presence. As stated before, art does not live in a vacuum. It is your eyes and minds (and in many cases, all your senses) that are asked to participate. Of course, your preparation can aid in this, but it is not mandatory. You do not need to know the latest art movements, or any art movements at all, to enjoy an artwork or an art show. That does not mean that preparation will not come in handy, but that is up to you. What you really need is an open mind, uncluttered by the bullshit of the day. This is ideal, but we all know life does not often allow for the ideal. The beauty of art is that it will communicate what it can, to whom it can.
This is the beauty of living with art. You can look at it regularly in different light, in different states of mind, in different emotional situations, and get fresh insight. At a gallery show, this must obviously be limited, but that is part of the process. You cannot just hop into an art gallery, look at everything in a quick overview, and then leave right away. Not if you expect to actually create a mental dialogue with the art being shown. It takes a bit of time. First impressions are only enough for superficial matters. Art is deeper than that, otherwise it is just decoration.
Therefore, go to the gallery, walk in, take a casual stroll through and look at each work of art. Note what impression it makes on you and move on to the next. Keep your ears open for anything you may find interesting, such as who the artist is, and if she happens to be discussing her work. Sometimes the artist will give a small speech/statement discussing their latest work, or the direction they are heading in. Listen to them. See how this applies to the art you have looked at.
Go around again. Take a second look at everything. See how your impressions have changed or remained the same. No one will bother you for staying too long. No one will bother you for only staying 15 minutes. However, you must give the art a chance to speak to you, and this cannot be accomplished with a cursory glance at everything and a quick exit. There is usually some form of literature provided, either by the gallery or by the artist themselves. This is a good place to learn more about the artist and their work. There is likely to be some sort of sign-in sheet where you can provide your email and receive updates from either the artist or the gallery.
How do you find time for art shows?
The beauty of an art show is that you can access it at your own pace. You can use a visit to an art gallery opening as a precursor to a night out, as a great conversation starter among friends. You can swing by an opening after dinner on a Friday or Saturday night, and enjoy a drink while walking off some of dinner and feeding your mind a bit. Some people frequent art shows regularly, and use them as their socializing routine. Like-minded people enjoying art can be a very fun pastime. You can also hit several openings/shows in sequence and explore the full gamut of what is being offered on any given day. Hell, if you need a small break waiting for the traffic to die down after work, go to the art show! Kill an hour looking at art and then head home with a full mind. Even if the art turns out to be horrible, at the least you have something new to grouse about!
So many people are curious about art, and the art world itself. Yet, the very nature of it makes the art world appear to be an elitist situation, where only the informed and worldly and educated snobs of the world are welcome. This is really not the way it is, just the way it is portrayed in mass media. Most art openings are such casual affairs, and your presence means a lot to those showing work. Remember, if you like something, and can afford it, go ahead and buy something. Sometimes prints are available, or smaller works at a reduced price. The goal is for the art to communicate to someone enough that they wish to own it, and live with it. That someone could very well be you. If you have no money, feel free to enjoy the art anyways. Exposure is the goal of every professional artist, and while one person may not purchase something, their favorable comments about the art or artist can provoke others to buy work, or to come to the next art show. Share what you find. Talk about what you like or do not like. That makes you a part of the art world, and just as important a part as the artists and gallery owners. Go forth, and do so with confidence. The art world is waiting for your input and participation.
All of my work has an experimental value to it. I never set precise standards for a finished piece, partly because of my indecisiveness but also because new ideas sprout out of each painting in different stages. Here is a self portrait I started last night, it has already taken off in a new direction and I am sure it will have evolved again and again by the time the show comes around on Nov 5th.
As an artist not only are you subjected tons of outside competition but at any given time you are competing also against yourself. Personally, my interests lay within equal rights, fair treatment, and identity , and citiscapes. On opposite sides of the spectrum, the two couldn't be further from each other. As a result of my decision to quit my day job and do the artist thing full time, an internal struggle has arrisen. What I want to paint vs. what will sell.
Artists have an innate need to show the public visually what we are thinking and voice our opinions. Many of my works are politically charged because I am interested in identity. My most recent show was entitled, The State of Our (un)Union, where I visually addressed the plight of African-Americans since the Civil Rights. I poured my heart and soul into those paintings, formerly I was a special education teacher to inner city children with emotional disturbances. I had plenty to say about our "popular culture".
However, I also love music and I love to paint what music makes me feel. Fast, uptempo music, you know the type that you have no choice but to tap your foot to? In high school I had a painting teacher that always made us listen to classical music, saying it would help us use our right side of the brain, or was it the left? The correct (creative) side! So now as an all grown up artist, I still do that, however my music is much much faster! And the strokes I leave on my canvas mirror the flow of the music.
Finally there is my love of citiscapes. In college one of the painting classes I took, assigned us to take the elements of a city and put it together. ie. People, Buldings, Movement, Signage. This was my painting below.
Ever since then I've done a lot of collage paintings, and eventually merged the citiscapes into purely abstracted paintings. But the problem still remains. Paint what will sell or paint what I like.
I love to paint abstracts, but most of the general viewing public don't get abstracts. So they glance at it and move on to something they can connect with. The political pieces are thought provoking, but not many people are willing to hang such controversial pieces in their homes.
So alas, I am torn. As a professional artist, it is my income,and if art doesn't sell, bills don't get paid. Do I become strictly commercial and become a cookie cutter artist, who paints like the prints you can find at Walmart? Or do I continue to paint what I like and hope, wish, and pray that someone will buy it?