Sunday, December 31, 2017

Cyan of the Times

I met Daniel Kukla when he undertook the Joshua Tree National Park residency back in 2012 and was impressed by the perspective he brought to that challenge. We stayed in touch and I was happy to have Daniel return to the Mojave Desert in October, 2017. 

Daniel has been moving his practice away from traditional photography into the realm of the lenseless - working directly with chemicals, light and investigating biological processes. What I learned on this residency was that Daniel's undergraduate degree was in Evolutionary Ecology and Biology. This explained the able way in which he approached new ways of making work and how he brought a research approach to bear.

Daniel's residency was cut somewhat short by work considerations however he made the most of his time, working primarily with large scale cyanotypes on fabric. He also made some captivating video using only a leaking aquarium and shadows on the stucco.


Daniel's open house was part exhibition and part presentation on his fascinating processes - both very well received. Thanks to Daniel for coming out from Brooklyn and pushing his practice further in the desert. 

Monday, December 18, 2017

Wagnerian Perspectives

Johanna Wagner came to BoxoHOUSe from Karlsruhe, Germany in November, 2017. She had been recommended to me by Aaron Sheppard, a local multi-talented artist and performer, so I knew things would be interesting. Johanna works across several mediums, reacting to the stimulus in the environments she travels to. She also has some series of works which she sought to extend through the residency, particularly her "night shots."


Johanna delved right into the studio, making drawings and paintings on glass, panel and silk. She also got out into the landscape and starting making images and video. Johanna was happy to be invited to participate in JT Lab's Artist Tea series. For her presentation,she devised a meditative performance that focused on the elements around her - wind, sand and water. She also gave an artist talk about her work and then led the audience through some exercises that put them in the performance frame on the topic of binary code. 


n the lead up to her open house, Johanna collaborated with Aaron Sheppard on several short pieces for  performance. Aaron and Johanna have an ongoing collaboration titled Nameless and Neutral and they performed under this rubric. Johanna's wonderful documentation of the open house exhibition and video of the performance are on her site here.

Many thanks to Johanna for coming over to Joshua Tree and providing her unique perspective on the desert experience.

Lou's Men

It was an honor to be part of the 24 hr programming that Eva Soltes of Harrison House Music, Arts, and Ecology arranged for the centennial of Lou Harrison's birth on May 14, 2017. BoxoHOUSE was proud to host Lou's drawings of men along with documentation of his poetry and other writings. This was perfect timing just ahead of the June Pride month. Together with Heather Johnson, we created  a sense of "being at home" with Lou, borrowing his rockers from Harrison House and some vintage cheesecake magazines from John Luckett. The day's proceeding were streamed into the studio and a true celebration of Lou's life ensued.


Full Circle

It was a huge pleasure to welcome Heather Johnson to BoxoHOUSE again in May, 2017 and to exhibit the work from her latest phase of her large project titled "In Search of the Frightening and Beautiful".   

Watercolor paintings and hand-stitched embroideries were on view, based on experiences the artist collected while traveling from Twentynine Palms, CA, to Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2015. ISFB was conceived and put into practice through an artist residency at BoxoHOUSE four years ago, and Heather wass delighted to bring this work back to the desert and the community from which it originally sprang.