Wonderspaces 3.0

I’m so excited to once again share my experience with a traveling exhibition group that has become my favorite event of the year. Wonderspaces partners with artists to deliver artwork to new audiences and travels them to various cites.  Their mission is to “create shared understanding through shared experiences.” I was once again invited to the opening night of Wonderspaces San Diego which is back for their third year with a new show titled “In Common“. Below I share information about and imagery from my 5 favorite art pieces in this year’s show.

 

RAINBOW ROOMS by Pierre le Riche

Rainbow Rooms recreates a home scene in which the objects are covered with various fabrics and multi-colored yarn. Even the walls themselves are made of woven yarn. The installation reflects the artist’s experience growing up as a gay man in conservative South Africa, and is intended to stimulate a dialogue about identity, exploring struggles of discrimination, acceptance, and masculinity.”  

You all know i’m a sucker for color…ok ok, obsessed with it. Especially when something combines all the colors! This space obviously spoke to me as its basically a rainbow transformed into a combination of house-like rooms. It was pretty great that you could sit and relax on the chairs as well. It really make me want to move in…but in all seriousness, that fact, plus the combination of materials made the art piece feel home-y, accessible, and like you could really become part of it.

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EXPERIMENT 2.C by Dan Goods & David Delgado

Experiment 2.C explores various notions of awe for a viewer to experience – a sensation of vastness, an inability to define the surrounding environment, and the feeling of being surrounded by one object with endless variability.”

This installation in particular really took my breath away visually. The simplicity of a moving light and contained water vapor came together in such a magical way it was hard for your brain to comprehend. It felt like being in space above the cloud formations of the earth or in an airplane at the magical moment of a sunset. The nature of the ever changing forms of the vapor made it so every chem the light would cycle through, you had a completely different experience than the previous time. I spent so much time in there taking in the piece my hair got fluffy from the humidity!

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WE ARE ALL MADE OF LIGHT by Maja Petrić

The immersive experience emulates constellation in which every person becomes one among the stars. The natural beauty of the universe is evoked to reveal connections between us and the rest of the world that often stay hidden in the plain sight. As visitors move through the galaxy of stars, the light is extruded in their shape, living light trails of their presence across the starscape. Once visitors leave, their trails of light remain in the constellation and are added to the collection of trails that others have left behind.”

This was definitely the installation we had the most fun playing around in. It’s just as interactive as it is beautiful. The diamond-like sparkle of all of the fibers is intoxicating, and the more you jump around the more sparkly it gets. I had to place a video in this section as photos just cant do it justice!

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ANIMA by onformative, Nick Verstand & Geert Schaap

ANIMA is a six-foot wide sphere with video projected on its surface, in 360 degrees, from the inside of the sphere. The video consists of abstract fluid-like patterns with a soundtrack of electronically-generated tones. Both the imagery and sound are interactive, reacting to viewers’ position in the room.”

This one was pretty whimsical and so colorful. It turned out really fun to experience in a group. The more people in the room making noise and moving, the more the ball rippled and color-changed. There was some hilarity going on for sure. I jumped right underneath it for some dramatic photos.

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SPACE HERE BECOMES SOUND by Studio LONK x Mark IJzerman

Space Here Becomes Sound is an interactive installation which combines kinetic sculpture and sound. Participants rotate a series of metal frames to trigger a variety of sounds associated with spaces of the home. Combining different layers or sequences of sound lets users craft their own soundscape relating to the memory and comfort of home.”

I was really taken by the beauty of the forms themselves and the combination each color had with the various sounds that would echo around you as you move the various pieces. This was definitely one of the more delicate installation and used sound in one of the most thoughtful ways.

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It was another magical year at Wonderspaces. Each year seems to get better and better. not only the caliber of the pieces, but the polish of the presentation and the combination of pieces chosen.  DO NOT miss the show this year. You will no doubt be inspired and full of Wonder!

Barrio

Some areas of this city are so special they warrant special call out. Barrio Logan is one of those places. From the Mexican/Latin roots that first made it what it was, to the now burgeoning art scene, it’s a real gem of a neighborhood. As a mural lover this place has specific charm with its Chicano Park that boasts one of the largest collections of murals in the US. I found a small charming corner of the hood and met up with Stacy Keck for a mini shoot starting with local piñata shop Piñataz Zarate and ending with some street art in the area. I will definitely be back to Barrio Logan for more exploring and photo shoots so I can share more if what this area has to offer.

All photos: Stacy Keck

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The Bash

Bloom Bash is an event that needs little explanation once you experience it…plus its really hard to describe. It’s rainbow, it’s sparkly, it’s a bit gaudy in a good way, and there’s something new around every corner. This year’s signature art installation by Monty Montgomery and the Art Car by Taped Metal Canvas really took the art integration to the next level….not to mention our newly iconic BB Ferris wheel. This party was so huge this year, it pushed me to my personal event breaking point. As many photos as there are below, I still feel like it only shows a very small fragment of how magical, fun and insanely giant this party actually is. I hope you enjoy!

My Dress: Margot Striped Sequin by Dress The Population 
Hair: Tony Fiorentino
All Photos: Bauman Photographers 

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Art Alive Premiere

Once a year my life gets turned upside down. Topsy turvy with months of planning and expectation around one event…Art Alive. Sounds dramatic, but for the past 11 years I plan most other things in my life around this week of all encompassing events. It also sounds a little negative….but the secret is that even with all its pressure, it’s detail smothering nature, and the downright physical and mentally exhaustion it brings on, I love it. No other project allows me to flex my creativity and logistical prowess in the same way. The Premiere Dinner specifically is like an event planners greatest fantasy played out in one space. The Art gives me endless content and the main event calls for overwhelming scale…that is what dreams are made of in my book. This year’s event was themed on Alfred Eisenstaedt; the 20th century’s premier Photojournalist. A special retrospective exhibition of his black and white photography from the 30’s and 40’s was the inspiration for this year’s dinner. Set among this amazing photography, an art deco dream evening unfolded.

The rotunda design by Jennifer McGarigle was also themed on Eisenstaedt and greeted guest as they entered the cocktail space. The deep red roses encased in glass echoes visions of being frozen in time like a photograph. The rest of the cocktail space decor hinted at the gilded wonderland you would encounter upstairs at dinner.

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Matter being escorted upstairs, guest entered the dining gallery through a tunnel of lights into a room with a custom full overhead installation ceiling of over 40 gold Art Deco chandeliers with areas of complementary floor chandeliers reaching upwards. Similarity the jewel toned floral centerpieces reached upwards on gold risers off the emerald velvet table linen. Colored crystal and gold place settings brought it all together.

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We also got into the theme with our event dress and ended up all wearing shades of velvet that matched the decor for the evening and the featured era.

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It’s always amazing to see something you have planned and dreamed of for a full year physically come together in front of you. It was a stunning night enjoyed by all and makes me even more hungry for next year’s event! I can’t wait to share the monster event Bloom Bash with you soon!

All Photos: Bauman Photographers

My Dress: Norma Kamali
Rhinestone Turban: Mary Jane Claverol

Production, Tables, Chairs: PEP Creative
Lighting Fixtures & Lounge Furniture: Revelry Event Designers
Tabletop: Not My Dish & BBJ Linen
Flowers: Green Fresh Florals + Plants
Catering & Cocktails: Coast Catering

~SG

Mellow Yellow

Do you ever see something seemingly ordinary but become completely obsessed with it? This was me when I first saw this place school buses are stored off the freeway. Year after year I thought this would be an amazing place to take photos, and once I started this blog, I knew I would make it happen. I was finally able to with my photographer friend Bronson. I went yellow on yellow for this shoot and we got some great pics at this really fun 15 minute mini shoot in before being promptly asked to leave haha! Not much else to say, but I hope you enjoy these fun images of the busts yard and surrounding streets ~ SG

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All Photos: Bauman Photographers
Top: Norma Kamali Ribbon Sleeve Top in Acid
Pants: Alexander Wang High Waist Snap Leggings

 

 

Desert X

The first time I heard about DesertX I knew it was for me. Large scale art installations set all over the desert!!? Sign me up! The timing of the first DesertX exhibition in 2017 didn’t work out for me. Luckily they extended the Doug Aiken mirage house and I was able to see it. I was hooked. When the 2019 lineup was announced I made prompt plans for a girls weekend to check it out.

There were too many installations to see them all, but we got to see quite a few and below are a few of my favorites. Not surprised my favorite ones turned out to be the most colorful ones 🙂

 

 

SPECTER BY STERLING RUBY

Sterling Ruby’s fluorescent orange monolith, SPECTER, appears as an apparition in the desert. The bright, geometric sculpture creates a jarring optical illusion, resembling a Photoshopped composite or collage, as if something has been removed or erased from the landscape. The block acts as a cipher or stand-in, mimicking the form it could be — a shipping container, a military bunker, an unidentified object, an abandoned home-stead. Fluorescent orange is traditionally used for safety, as a warning. Here that logic is reversed: a ghostly object, set apart from the natural environment, hiding in plain sight.

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LOVERS RAINBOW BY PIA CAMIL

Set in two locations across the U.S.–Mexico border, Lover’s rainbow is conceived as an identical set of rainbows made from painted rebar. Exposed rebar usually signals development, but too often in the Mexican landscape we see those dreams thwarted and abandoned. Historically, rainbows have symbolized rain and fertility. Located in desert territory, the act of bending the rebar into the ground is a way to re-insert hope into the land. The mirror rainbows are also meant to throw light into the current immigration policies, prompting viewers to see things from two perspec-tives. Those who cross the border get the full experience. After all, going in search of the rainbow should highlight its symbolic power to re-establish hope, love, and inclusive-ness when we need it most.

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DIVE-IN BY SUPERFLEX

It was the unexpected discovery of an abundance of fossilized marine life more than 100 miles inland from the Pacific shore that led the early Spanish settlers to name this valley Conchilla, which means “little shell.” Because of a mis-spelling the region became known as the Coachella Valley, thereby stripping it of the reminder that 6 million years ago, what is now desert had been underwater and connected to the so-called Western Interior Seaway. For the Danish collective Superflex, geological history and the not-so-distant future meet in the recognition that with global warming, rising water levels will again submerge the land- scape along with all the structure and infrastructure that made it habitable for humans. Rethinking architecture from the point of view of future submersion, their mission has been to create land-based forms equally attractive to human and marine life. Using the preferred color palettes of Walter and Leonore Annenberg, Palm Springs, and marine corals, Dive-In merges the recognition that global warming will drastically reshape the habitat of our planet with another more recent extinction: the out- door movie theater. Here the interests of desert dwellers and sea life come together in the coral-like walls and weekly screenings of a structure born of a deep past and shallow future.

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JULIAN HOEBER

Going Nowhere Pavilion #01 is a Möbius strip made from concrete breeze blocks in a variety of fleshy pinks and browns. Technically, the Möbius strip is a surface with one continuous side formed by joining the ends of a rectangular strip, but it has a direct relationship to methods of psychology. Famed psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan’s own attempts to use topology – the study of geometric properties – as a vehicle to describe the human mind is a subject artist Julian Hoeber has explored for years. As with the Möbius strip form, what is inside and outside the self can quickly become indiscernible.

Executed Variant DHS #1 (Q1, CJ, DC), the painting sited in a pool connected to the property, is a loose variant on a series of works Hoeber titled the Execution Changes. It is connected to its neighboring Möbius strip by proximity, but also by color. The painting, like the pavilion, is an image of the mind in its own way: the painting is a study of phenomenological consciousness. Both the sculpture and the painting attempt to parse out how forms can represent the logical, irrational, historical and corporeal experiences of human consciousness.

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Magic Circle

I had heard about this magical sculpture garden called Queen Califia’s Magic Circle in Northern San Diego for a long time. It’s only open for only a few hours a week and I don’t make it to Escondido much so it took me years to make time to get there, but I was finally able to make the trek last week to meet up with photographer friend Nevena. The artist Niki de Saint Phalle is well known in San Diego due to her many mosaic covered public art works installed all over town, but nothing else she has done reaches this remarkable scale. It’s a true dreamscape and I was able to get a sense of the way she merged fantasy and history in her work more than anything else of hers I have previously seen. I tried to embody some of the fantasy while playing with the high contrast color and delicious textures…perhaps a modern day Queen Califia. Nevena’s photos turned out wonderful and I hope you enjoy.

All photos by Nevena Marigold Studio 

Below is the description from the City of Escondido’s webpage about the sculpture garden:

Queen Califia’s Magical Circle is the only American sculpture garden and the last major international project created by Niki de Saint Phalle (born France, 1930-2002). Inspired by California’s mythic, historic and cultural roots, the garden consists of nine large-scale sculptures, a circular “snake wall” and maze entryway, sculpturally integrated bench seating, and native shrubs and trees planted within the interior plaza and along the outer perimeter. The garden bears the brilliant, unique mosaic ornamentation that is an unmistakable part of Saint Phalle’s later work.

The sculpture garden’s key architectural features are an undulating circular wall that surrounds the garden. Monumental playful serpents, decorated in colorfully patterned mosaics, slither along the top of the wall, their curved bodies forming a pattern of solids and voids that allows visitors to see landscape vistas beyond the garden. The “snake wall” opens into a maze whose walls and floors are covered with black, white, and mirrored tiles. Once through the maze, visitors enter into the central courtyard. There are nine freestanding sculptures in the garden. The imposing mosaic sculpture of Queen Califia standing on the back of a five-legged eagle commands the center of the garden. Eight large totemic sculptures surround Queen Califia. They are covered with symbols and forms freely drawn from Native American, Pre-Columbian, and Mexican art as well as the artist’s own fantastic imagery.

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