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Monday
May232011

artist profile: pablo calderon

Born in El Salvador in 1952, Pablo Calderon came to San Francisco with most of his family when he was in his late thirties.

In 2002, he started creating art at Creativity Explored—a nonprofit visual arts center where artists with developmental disabilities create, exhibit and sell art.

What we love about Calderon’s work is that he paints on a very large scale, uses saturated hues, broad strokes, and his subjects are usually single or repeating faces or animals.

Calderon alters his color palette and the surfaces he paints on—canvas, wood, paper, glass—but the wide eyed, curly-haired subjects consistently look very much alike; he refers to them as ‘munecas’, Spanish for dolls.

His artwork is well collected and though Calderon speaks only limited Spanish, he is happy and enthusiastic to show and explain his work to potential patrons.

To spend one minute with Pablo Calderon in the Creativity Explored studio, go here.

Tuesday
May172011

the feitelson fellowship, 2011

What: The Feitelson Arts Fellowship, 2011
When: May 19 thru July 3, 2011
Where: The Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, LAMAG
Featuring: Artists early in their career—including CB2 team member, Nuttaphol Ma

photo by: Clinton Steeds The Lorser Feitelson and Helen Lundeberg Feitelson Arts Fellowship is awarded through the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery Associates, LAMAGA, a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization that supports the Municipal Art Gallery at Barnsdall Park.

Conceived by the Feitelsons, seminal Los Angeles Modernist painters, and their friends, as a way to give encouragement to artists early in their careers by offering financial grants; it is issued in conjunction with the City of Los Angeles, C.O.L.A., Individual Artist Fellowships to twelve exemplary mid-career international artists.

Congratulations and good luck to all participating artists.

…for the 2011 Feitelson Arts Fellowship, multi-disciplinary artist—and CB2 Santa Monica team member—Nuttaphol Ma combined references to Sam Cooke’s ‘A Change is Gonna Come’ with a performance where he, Ma, set sail with a boat over his head on May Day from Badwater Basin to the trailhead of Mt. Whitney.
…the approximately 130-mile personal odyssey meditates on the ebbs and flows of our existence, the power and the abuse of power subjected upon the powerless, the dreams of leaving and the dreams of roots.  Ma’s installation distills the performance to a two channel video projected onto sewn fabric walls. 
…to learn more about the installation, check out Ma’s website or experience it by visiting the gallery.
…thanks to julio, CB2 sample handler, for the heads up on this one.

Friday
Apr292011

artist profile: eric boysaw

San Francisco’s Creativity Explored is a nonprofit visual arts center where artists with developmental disabilities create, exhibit—and sell art as ongoing support of their activities.

Artist Eric Boysaw is a native of San Francisco and his language, American Sign Language, has influenced many of the artworks he has produced over the years. He primarily works with drawing media, using pastel, charcoal, and ink with great precision.

Originally rendered in those mediums, Eric’s robot is given a new life in a flatweave dhurrie. His signature is woven in the corner as a gentle reminder of the creative talent behind it while a percentage of the sale of each rug will go directly to Creativity Explored.

Wednesday
Apr132011

milan 2011: designers and artists

Just when we think it’s presidents and economists who shape our world, we return to Milan for the Salone and remember it’s really the designers and artists.

Designers who solve problems through ingenious design and artists who add beauty—who provoke thought through compelling imagery, music, prose—while making our world more awesome.

We’re constantly thrilled and amazed by their ability to imagine a lamp that’s not just a casing for electric light, a bookcase that not just shelves— but one that’s breathtaking, sexy.

And while we’re extremely grateful to be working with creative and talented designers and artists, we remember the engineers who make their ideas a reality and just how equally important it is to laugh… to take fifteen minutes and four euros to enjoy a toy a designer created for us to play with.

We can choose to think of a swing as rope and a piece of wood or an old tire… or our castle fortress as a simple cardboard box… it’s all in allowing ourselves to imagine possibilities, and to enjoy them.

Monday
Mar212011

meet us: adam pearson

Meet Adam Pearson, a professional food stylist based near our photo shoot in LA and Palm Springs. He’s the creative genius of our Mexican Fiesta and his recipes will be featured throughout the season.

Who taught you to cook?
Growing up in southern California, my dad spent a lot of time with me grilling outside. He also taught me how to make biscuits and sausage gravy when I was about 8. The gravy recipe is so easy its ingrained in my memory—and those moments became more special as our family split up.

Has ‘California cuisine’ influenced you?
I was exposed to a lot of different, exotic cultures and cuisines at a young age—ironically none from my own family. I took bits and pieces from friends’ homes and what they were cooking, and now as an adult they finally make sense when I mix them together in the kitchen.

What’s your favorite ingredient to cook with?
Spices. I love the flavor of ethnic foods but right now I’m obsessed with Korean. It’s warm, spicy, filling—very much like comfort food. I’m working with an assistant who goes to the Korean market with me, translates the staples, shares how they can be mixed—this opened a door to experimenting with Korean cuisine.

Got any food styling secrets you can share?
Instead of following a recipe, I’ll start by ‘deconstructing’ it—meaning I’ll cook ingredients so each looks its best. As for plating, I like them to look approachable…a little messy…perfectly imperfect.

Also, tools are my thing. I’m the tool kid. I’d be lost without a blow torch…a mandolin…but the most important tools are a sense of confidence and your hands. It’s so true that experience enhances your senses. The first food stylist I apprenticed under—all he needed was his fingers and spit.

Where do you find inspiration?
My partner Matt and I, we travel a lot and always bring something back that’s food related. Our first stop is usually a grocery store for local ingredients—like chick pea flour from Nice, France. Matt was recently in Singapore and brought back a suitcase and a half—our pantry is filled with international foodstuffs.

We like to shop for one-off serving dishes, special baking dishes made for indigenous recipes…in Spain we found local pottery shops with hand-made, lovely cazuelas which are very useful in preparing Spanish recipes.

And wherever we are, we’re dissecting and cataloging what was prepared for us. In Buenos Aires we had compound butters with fresh bread that was to die for! Like English muffins with pistachio butter—so easy to do at home.

What do you do for fun?
Matt publishes mattbites.com, and we often work on it together, so recipes, food styling and photography are a huge part of both our lives. There’s no way around bringing our work home with us—especially since his studio is part of the house.

Often one of us is on a shoot out of town, so when we’re both home we make lots of trips to farmer’s markets. It’s almost a cliche but we get what’s local and seasonal—we’re spoiled being in southern California where we get fresh vegetables all year. We go without a menu in mind, check out what looks good, and make things up as we go along.

Great looking plates, platters, and serving utensils add another layer. Dinner in our house is usually a small production and we love rotating pieces from our prop studio with our everyday slip porcelain from Australia. And we get just about every food magazine out there so—there may be a fine line between passion and addiction, but there just doesn’t seem to be a lot of free time for anything but food.