Sunday, 18 October 2020

Live Streaming with Pavel Acevedo on Instagram

Pavel Acevedo invited me as a guest during his live stream hour for Speedball, on Instagram -- Tuesday, October 20, 2020.  This same post, with a little more info, is on the Ambos Lados International Print Exchange blog.


I am dedicated to creating print trouble outside the studio AND the taller, on both sides of the frontera.

  • I am not a printmaker -- but I am a TROUBLEMAKER
  • I believe that the print isn't done when it comes off the press. Its life doesn't start until AFTER the print leaves the studio. That's where the trouble begins.
  • Paintings are not "art" if you store them under your bed. The viewers do 50% of the work in creating the piece. Likewise PRINTS have to be seen, but as multiples they have an extra advantage over paintings. And that is where the fun begins -- in multiple print exhibitions. It's even more fun when those exhibitions spill across borders!
  • EXHIBITIONS: We have been exhibiting collections of prints since 2013, culminating in the DESERT TRIANGLE PRINT CARPETA (2016) and the AMBOS LADOS INTERNATIONAL PRINT EXCHANGE (2019). We have exhibited those prints all over the US and Mexico -- Portland, Riverside, Tucson, El Paso, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Austin, Dallas, Chicago, Palm Beach, Fla; Mexico City, Puebla, Oaxaca, Monterrey, Ciudad Juarez. Pavel Acevedo has been part of both of those print collections. Most importantly, it was Pavel who opened the doors to Mexico for us.
  • Moreover we have self-published CATALOGS (our latest in both English and Spanish), and still maintain BLOGS for those exhibitions -- using all the tools of the 21st century to enlarge the reach of the exhibitions. Likewise we keep up with the international printmakers on Instagram.
  • BEYOND THE EXHIBITION: In 2018 in Florida, Joseph Velasquez of "Drive By Press" came to our Desert Triangle opening near Palm Beach, and made prints with skateboards (after taking off the wheels). A few days later we were in Havana making prints with Octavio Irving. So exhibiting prints lead to other unexpected art interactions (which admittedly, they did not pay for themselves), which is where the fun kicks in.
  • In 2019 Manuel Guerra, Marco Sanchez and I took a trip across Mexico to meet a lot of the young Mexican printmakers. We printed with TORTILLA PRESSES on the streets of Guadalajara with Los Tres Gatos. We also made prints in Uruapan, Oaxaca, and at Taller 75 Grados in Mexico city. We gave a print presentation at the prestigious IAGO in Oaxaca, while the founder Francisco Toledo was still alive.
  • THE FUTURE: As now we met many great printmakers in Oaxaca and Mexico, I see a future playing "PRINT VOLLEYBALL" between the two countries. We can cheaply send prints back and forth over "the wall," and have pop-up print exhibitions in both countries. I might get 5 printmakers together in New Mexico, and invite 5 printmakers from Oaxaca and 5 more from Guadalajara. People from Albuquerque would come out to see work by the local printmaker heros, and walk away further buoyed by the 10 great unknown works by young Mexican printmakers. Likewise the printmakers in Mexico could have a tequila print salon for a night in Guadalajara, showing their work as well as the 10 prints from Albuquerque and Oaxaca. Of course, we could document all those pop-up and salon exhibitions on both sides of the border in a blog, and even self-publish a catalog.
  • It would be too expensive to pull off this kind of international art pollinating with sculpture or painting. However small prints can be mailed across the border CHEAPLY. And if you lose a print, there are always other copies of that artwork. However if you lose a painting, you lose a friend.
  • BEYOND THE PRINT: The printmaking impulse can go into overdrive. Recently Pavel, Tres Gatos and I have been sidebusting on Banksy, pasting large copies of prints in public and forbidden places. The strong black-and-white image of a print lends itself to enlarging and wheatpasting. The print exhibition does not have to stop at the gallery.
  • A more substantial example was the Zapata portfolio made by the MAPECO printmakers in Uruapan, Mexico. They were invited to hang their large prints -- commemorating the 100 years after the death of Emiliano Zapata-- in the community center in Cheran. CHERAN is a small pueblo in Michoacan that kicked out the government, the police, the illegal loggers, and the drug cartels -- setting up their own autonomous government. These prints must have had a big impact, bolstering the integrity of those villagers in Cheran. While we had nothing to do with that, the MAPECO printmakers that created the prints did participate in Ambos Lados. 
  • Another example of print overdrive happened in downtown Austin. When we had a show at Mexic-Arte in 2018, the director asked Los Dos and Jellyfish -- the two collectives exhibiting in the Desert Triangle -- to glue their paste-up print images on the outside wall and create a mural. The day after the Desert Triangle opening, the whole community was painting the walls and creating a spontaneous print paste-up mural. Later Augment El Paso enhanced this mural in time for SXSW, so that hipster visitors could view the Mexic-Arte mural animated by augmented reality on their iPhones. We continued the momentum by making a serigraph edition of that augmented image at Taller 75 Grados in Mexico City. This is an example of when the printmaking phenomena got way out of hand.
  • BLEEDING EDGE: We had previously employed AUGMENTED REALITY to enhance 3 Desert Triangle prints. Moreover we also experimented in AI (artificial intelligence) when I recently stole Pavel's print style, and applied it to my drawing in Deep Dream Generator. I used AI to create the relief print now hanging in Silver City in New Mexico, for the Southwest Print Fiesta Print Exchange. By the way, Los Tres Gatos also contributed prints to that exchange exhibition. By bringing all the latest 21st century technology to printmaking, we are staying on the cutting edge.


The images below are some of the highlights that we had of showing and making prints, in the US and Mexico, on both sides of the Mexican border.

More detailed information is on the following blogs:


Thursday, 15 October 2020

October 13, 2020

The Tuesday Night drawing group of Santa Fe drew together online using Zoom, because of the Covid 19 quarantine.  The model was from the Washington DC area (on the Virginia side):

Portrait Painter of the Year 2020

I have to commend the British for cheating so much during the televised Portrait Painter of the Year 2020 series, especially Episode 4.  A good number of the artists painted from their iPads and iPhones while in front of the sitter.

I got wound up and wondered if I could paint an interesting portrait on TV in four hours.  So I took a screen capture of one of the models and tried:

I produced a drawing in less than an hour, and cheated my own way by coloring it using Deep Dream Generator.

My drawing altered by AI, 

I doubt that the British would accept anything as unconventional as my drawing portrait.

San Carlos 1989

My painting friend from grad school, Fausto Igor Galvez Buenfil, sent me this photo below via Instagram.  It is in front of my painting in the studio of Maestro Luis Perez Flores, at the Academia de San Carlos in the center of Mexico City.  I painted that canvas from life on the roof of that art school (though the figure came from a reference book of models).

I also studied in the studio of Maestro Antonio Salazar Bañuelos at San Carlos.