The South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk is a self-guided, nighttime tour through galleries, museums, and independent creative businesses featuring eclectic art exhibitions and special performances. All ArtwalkSJ venues are FREE admission & open to the public.
Anno Domini // the second coming of Art & Design – 366 South First St. map
Artist’s reception in galleryONE: “Notches” Joseph Loughborough solo exhibition
Joseph Loughborough’s third solo show with Anno Domini pushes his oeuvre into the realm of colour. Influenced by a fusion of Primitive art ,Colour-field painting and Stuckism, this new corpus of distorted characters and figures explores the notion of experience and naivety.
“Notches” take many forms for many reasons. They appear on the nose of a plane, the bedpost, the handle of an axe. They can be found engraved on the wall of a prison cell marking days or years incarcerated. They symbolize an accumulation of some kind. Over the period of a lifetime we could argue that our bodies develop their own lexicon of expression. We become greyed, wrinkled and scarred. We gain experience, we accumulate. We become marked.
In his new series he uses the notch as a motif to symbolically imbue the work with experience. In a particularly cathartic manner this is contrasted with his experiments into colour which he openly admits to being intimidated by. He uses the structure he is familiar with – The portrait – to engage and confront his naivety by fearlessly bathing these depictions in a provocative palette.
Joseph Loughborough, b. 1981, spent his formative years exploring the derelict boatyards and creeks of Portsmouth, on the south coast of the UK. After graduating from Portsmouth University he pursued interests in art, philosophy and skateboarding culture, living in London, Paris and currently Berlin, Germany.
On view in galleryTWO: “Intimations of Substantiality Beneath” by Sergej Vutuc (B. 1979, Doboj, Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Since the mid 1980s Vutuc’s work has been about observing the (over)development of modern society and the privatization of public space; nature being conquered by concrete, concrete being conquered by the subversive act of skating. The work is based in nomadic movement through space and time, an endless sense of mobility, existence in between cities, countries, borders, worlds etc. Contested spaces, such as Fukushima, Detroit, Chernobyl, Israel and Palestine–strong symbols of ongoing human error and conflict, mistakes and misdirections in socioeconomic development.
Then there is the documentation of this ever-shifting landscape (physical and symbolic) through analog photography, publishing zines, mounting exhibitions, making music, drawing on walls, constant collaboration (as the essence of human creative exchange) and generally non-stop action and movement; fragmenting, altering, rearranging reality over and over, as necessary.
But one must also follow the natural human urge to expand one’s consciousness, to live in parallels, through imagination and it is here that Vutuc makes his departure to embark on a new series of work entitled Intimations of Substantiality Beneath. This exhibition begins a journey between exploring the landscape of flesh and passing moments on the way to somewhere; held in between, chosen by moment, by light, and by the energy drawn on the moment. It’s a melting point of Vutuc’s two latest publications: “there was something on the fence” and “jenseits von innen” (“beyond inside)”.
Vutuc sees the “scratching on the surface of blurry dream and fantasy as the only existing reality based on self creation.” The analog photo process allows for altering and scratching the film; another manipulation and questioning of (documented) reality. Adding to his poetic imagery music and sound allows an instant connection with the viewer, and reaction from an audience. All of this combined unifies the space of the work and allows a complete transformative experience. The energy created in this visual/soundscape confronts the viewer, challenging them to (re)see the strength and fragility of human relationships, family, tradition, intimacy, personal and global conflict. Vutuc’s work functions to shift our perception of reality, humanity, and society in general.
Vutuc currently lives and works in Heilbronn, Germany.
Art Ark Gallery – 1035 South Sixth St. map
Opening reception 6–9pm: “Arousing Biophilia”: Curated by Shannon Amidon
Artists: Shannon Amidon, Liam Blackwell, Cheryl Coon, Michele Guieu, Melinda Hurst Frye, Pantea Karimi, Carrie Lederer, Cynthia O’Brien, Michael Pisano, Estraven Lupino-Smith, Demetra Theofanous, Alexis Williams
In this time of social, environmental and political upheaval, this exhibition will offer viewers a moment of contemplation and introspection. Art has a unique ability to help people envision new and innovative ways to observe nature. Arousing Biophilia is an exhibit that seeks to evoke deeper exploration of our natural world, acts of altruism and environmental stewardship by bringing the wonder of nature and the environment back into focus. Artists’ talk at 6pm.
KALEID gallery – 88 South Fourth St. map
KALEID Gallery is proud to present two new feature exhibitions by gallery resident artists Jeff Bramschreiber, and Julie Meridian for the month of March.
Artist reception: “Ethereal Sea” by Jeff Bramschreiber
The idea for this series of paintings came to me early last year. I love the sea, and many of my “Two Buck Tuesday” (at KALEID) creations are related to the ocean in one way or another. Last year I was visiting Pajaro Dunes in Monterey a favorite place for recharging the gray cells, relaxing and getting re-focused and inspired. This visit though something was off; for the first time instead of a sense of calm and healing it felt like the coast needed my energy somehow. It really startled me, and then I started realizing that those exciting one on one encounters with wildlife at and in the sea were becoming far less frequent , that everyday a little more was lost. I got the idea that if I could capture those encounters using color in a way that focuses the isolation, the fragility of those moments, that maybe I could, in my own way, show that to others.
Artist’s reception: “Natural Conclusions” by Julie Meridian
How does someone else see or respond to the same place?
What is unique in each person’s perception and expression?
How can we value an experience as it is presented and also be thoughtful about progressing beyond it?
“Natural Conclusions” is a show of unexpected collaboration and second chances. Each painting was originally sourced from a local thrift store or flea market. Julie Meridian has chosen a portion of each to “complete” in her style, creating a study of contrasts in expressive power.
Julie Meridian is a San José artist blending quiet realism with impressionist details to convey layers of meaning that reward a closer view. Through her paintings and illustrations she invokes the essence of people, places, and intangible presence.
In the DMC Studio at MACLA: Youth Showcase & Open Mic 5:30-7pm
Join the DMC Studio youth for their monthly slam poetry, live music, and photography showcase on Friday, Feb 2!
Must be ages 13-21 to perform in the Open Mic. Sign up list opens at 5:30 pm; open Mic/Poetry Slam from 6–7pm. Each performer will be allowed to perform 2-3 pieces OR a 5 minute set.
In the Castellano Playhouse Theater 8-10pm: Charged Particles
Charged Particles features three of the country’s virtuosos doing just that in the acoustic and electric jazz arena. Murray Low is a keyboard wizard with dazzling Latin-jazz technique and imaginative improvisational skills. Aaron Germain is an inventive and sophisticated acoustic and electric bassist. Along with fiery drummer Jon Krosnick, these players are making some of the most electrifying jazz in the country today.
The trio’s repertoire blends jazz with elements of Latin music,funk, classical music, and other genres. The group’s original compositions are mixtures of complex orchestration and elaborate improvised solos. The band brings a similar approach to playing arrangements of tunes by other jazz artists and traditional jazz standards by the composers of America’s most popular songs from decades ago, each played with a new twist.
In the Visual Arts Gallery: “Notes on Democracy” explores the depths of political discourse, process and the ideology of democracy.
Featured artists: Shey Rivera Rios, Juan Capistran, Jaque Fraguá, Luis ‘Xago’ Juarez, Gilda Posada, Ricardo “Tijuana Rick” Cortez, Rosa Gonzalez, RoCoCo (KC Rosenberg and Modesto Covarrubias)
Phantom Galleries at Pho69 – 321 South First St. map
Opening reception: “Wild Patterns” &” Mogu Mogu Munch Munch” by Harumo Sato
About Wild Patterns: I have had a strong interest in visual pattern design for as long as I can remember. My parents, who are professional historians, brought me to various ancient ruins around the world to explore. My parents and I visited Japanese, Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Phoenician ruins. Each visit has had a lasting impact on me. I remember that, as a child, without any historical knowledge as context, I found the pattern designs of all cultures breathtaking.
An observer can notice that many patterns in design, artwork, and storytelling traverse multiple cultures, timelines, and contexts over the centuries. For example, artistic tiger patterns became known in Japan during the Heian era and gradually became popular, even though no one in Japan ever saw a tiger with their own eyes. This is because tiger patterns were imported from China and India. Interestingly enough, similar design patterns are created independently throughout history and culture. Flower patterns of Ancient Egyptians and of the French Gothic are remarkably similar, but very far apart both in time and geographic location.
I believe that patterns come from the unconscious mind that we all share. It is for this reason, I choose to study them through my work.
This is a show to celebrate our unconscious connection and vitalize the beauty of patterns.
About Mogu Mogu Munch Munch: These five diptych screen print series are inspired by Japanese creation myth and Modern American/Japanese food system. Compared with the Ancient age, changes to the quality and quantity of flour, meat, vegetables, fish, and clams (seafood) are captured through the body of the Japanese food goddess Ogetsuhime. According to the Kojiki or “Records of Ancient Matters,” Ogetsuhime was murdered by the sea god Susano-o when he discovered that she can nourish him with food produced through her orifices. The food was given as a gift from Ogetsuhime, but we seem to forget appreciation toward food and nature. This series questions our current relationship with our food by comparing prehistoric food life and modern food life. This series was exhibited twice in New York.
Harumo Sato is a California based Japanese visual artist, illustrator, and storyteller. In her art practice, she uses various patterns and colors to create visual pleasure and vivacious energy with the combination of screen prints, Japanese watercolor, sumi ink, and acrylic.
Exhibition produced by Phantom Galleries guest curator Robert Ragazza.
Works San Jose – 365 South Market St. map
Opening reception: “Eco Echo: Unnatural Selection”
Join us for opening night! Artists: Anne Beck, Barbara Boissevain, Ginger Burrell, Judith Selby Lang, Richard Lang, Kent Manske, Michelle Wilson, and Nanette Wylde.
“Eco Echo: Unnatural Selection” presents an array of artists who respond to aspects of our ecological environment in unexpected and diverse ways. Each artist is grappling with some ecological concern, creating echos which are celebratory, poignant, beautiful, complex, and provide opportunity for audience examination and reflection.
Caffé Frascati – 315 South First St. map
“Lovely Ladies” by Laura Johnston
Lovely Ladies is an ongoing series of mixed media portraits celebrating a diverse array of women. Within the series, Laura tackles issues like body image, mental health, cultural expectations, and day-to-day struggles in order to connect with others and inspire conversation. Most of her portraits surface from the imagination, and she carries the same intuitive energy into her portraits of real-life women as well.
Laura Johnston is a multidisciplinary artist working in San Jose. She uses mixed media, painting, photography, and small sculpture in her work, which all centers around the human psyche.
First Fridays is Caffe Frascati Opera Night presented by First Street Singers, with the Bay Area’s finest opera singers performing your very favorite classical arias and duets live in the cafe! for the South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk.
Social Policy – 200 South First St. map
Artists’ reception: “Power In Faces” by Aaron Pettigrew, and Yosef Gebre
“Power in Faces” aims to create social commentary by re-contextualizing contemporary social, cultural, and political issues. Yosef Gebre’s illustrated Afro-futurist characters paired with Aaron Pettigrews’s print photographs challenge the viewer’s perception of space and constraint. The title suggests that social change is accomplished when people unite towards a common goal. When individuals respect one another and cherish each other’s unique attributes and abilities while working in harmony to compensate for one another’s weaknesses, great change can be achieved.
Live Music by YESX2 and Friends at 8pm
SoFA Market – 387 So. First St. map
Opening reception: The Lola x Kenneth Collaboration
Kenneth moved home to help care for his grandmother (“Lola” in Tagalog), and they began to paint together. Lola starts each piece in watercolor, and Kenneth finishes the pieces based on Lola’s stories and memories.
Gallery Suha Suha – 45 E. Williams St. map (new venue!)
2 0 0 7 – 2 0 1 7 by Sung Jae Bang, and Haelee Choi
Suha Suha is a creation by Sung Jae Bang and Haelee Choi, a Bay Area-based art initiative that seeks to fuse illustration with ceramic painting in original ways. Sung Jae’s art circumnavigates a simple, homespun domesticity, with works featuring appetizing casts of fruits and simple homemade dishes. Haelee’s palette spans the animal kingdom, personified through her bold, anime-inspired rectilinear style. Founded in 2007, Suha Suha continues to be an active part of the Bay Area art scene.
PhantomGalleries at The Pierce – 2 Pierce Ave. map
“2020″ group exhibition featuring artists: Jemal Diamond, Michael Singer, and Sara Tomasello
Past, present, FUTURE. Where have we been? Where are we going? LOOKING toward the horizon, into the great beyond. Three South Bay artists enVISION the future and explore the collective human journey as we soon approach the year 2020. Abstract Photographer MICHAEL SINGER takes us on a space-aged odyssey with his images of futuristic architecture. Painter SARA TOMASELLO exhibits colorful and lush vignettes depicting ageless archetypes and prophetic narratives. Abstract Illustrator JEMAL DIAMOND muses the future of fashion, the future of hacking, and the future as female.
Exhibition produced by Phantom Galleries guest curator Vivian Giourousis.
Studio Climbing Gym – 396 South First St. map
“Snail Mail” by Alex Lotti
The collage of postcards entices a feeling for the outdoors, urging the viewer to reach out to friends via Snail Mail as opposed to the cultural norm of posting picture instantaneously on social media.