Archive for February, 2009

gina’s shooting blanks

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

My girl and Galleon Trader-ette Gina Osterloh is having her debut LA show this weekend. Wish I could be there to catch it. Ever since her Fulbright in the Philippines last year, Gina’s been on fire. This show is an extension of works that she showed in Manila at Green Papaya Art Projects and Silverlens Gallery, and probably relates to what she’s also currently showing at Valentine Willie Fine Art in Kuala Lumpur.  I absolutely loved Gina’s photographs since well before Galleon Trade, but I extra-love them now. Catch this show if you’re around LA this month.


Gina Osterloh
Shooting Blanks
Feb. 21st -March 28th, 2009
Opening Reception Saturday February 21st from 6 pm to 10 pm

Shooting Blanks is Gina Osterloh‘s debut Los Angeles solo exhibition as her photographs continue to deftly combine elements of sculpture, performance, and painting.

Building upon her use of restrained serial performances and gesture, the photographs in Shooting Blanks mark a pivotal shift in Gina Osterloh’s arc of work.  While previous work insisted upon the use of her own body, Shooting Blanks expands to incorporate other anonymous bodies, and “cast paper maché mannequins, as she transforms the human subject of her surreal photographs into a prop, devoid of identity.”

Created during her recent Fulbright Scholar Fellowship in Manila, Osterloh obsessively cut and collaged colored office bond paper, which comes in only four colors in the Philippines ”“ candy pink, blue, yellow and green, as well as recycled paper from a local factory in Manila. The result is unsettling images of life size rooms where Osterloh activates metaphors of camouflage beyond the language of war and makes visible the psychological and physical space that both the body and its environment occupy.

Gina Osterloh’s photographs are unexpected propositions that interrupt established narrative through an oblique angle.  Employing a conceptualist strategy, Osterloh incorporates a loose rule-based practice that investigates the body as material and image as language. Shooting Blanks is based upon the impotence and futility of language, dislocation, mimicry, and the desire to connect with one’s surroundings.

For more information, please contact Francois Ghebaly at or at the gallery at +1 213 625 1802

Chung King Project
945 Chung King Road
Los Angeles, CA 90012
+1 213 625 1802

Strange Hope-ening

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

One of the nicest things about being back is coming home to a new President, and  a country that’s hopefully ready for some progress. Before I left town, I had sent off artwork to Galeria de la Raza for a clever little show called Strange Hope, which opened this past weekend, not long after I got back.

41 artists were invited by Carolina and Raquel to contribute a single, 8.5″ x 8.5″ piece of art to the exhibition, to be traded with another artist in the show by lottery. The show wanted to contend with both the hopeful aspirations as well as to acknowledge the uncertainty of these post-inaugural times.

Galeria wanted to address transformation, renewal and collectivity, but to that, I’d add generosity, vision, optimism, and camaraderie. It was such a fantastic, happy evening (even before the tequila shots), and all the artists were thrilled to be receiving artwork themselves. The energy at the opening was delicious: lots of exuberant, excited folks thrilled to be at the show, and part of any number of new experiences in 2009.

Guillermo Gomez-Pena giving a fantastic benediction of sorts

Gentlebear Jaime Cortez announcing the art trades with Carolina at left

Cheezers: participating artists Julio Morales, Johanna Poethig, Ana T Fernandez, Pato Hebert

The very cute mini-version of the artwork by Angelica Muro that I will receive once the show’s over

Strange Hope
Feb 6  to Apr 2
Galeria de la Raza
24th Street, SF

best. t-shirt. ever. (2009 edition)

Monday, February 9th, 2009

Some of you will remember that I have a small but proud collection of Philippines-themed t-shirts, as evidenced here.


As of January 2009, I now have quite possibly the BEST Nonsensical And Yet Completely Logical Filipino/a  T Shirt ever.
So wrong, yet so, so, SO right.



If you have to ask, you wouldn’t understand.

All I can say is,
A. Carlos, maraming salamat for literally giving me the shirt off your back, I adore you,
B. Whoever designed this is a complete genius and I’m giving you a medal,
C. This shirt is proof that God, or at least some form of divine inspiration, exists.


Sunday, February 8th, 2009

The Wofford has landed! I’m finally back in the Bay Area, physically and mentally (you’d think they’d align naturally, right? but no) after an extended series of ins-and-outs of town.

First, there was Christmas in Tahoe:

Wofford sisters (aka the Wofford brothers)


Not something my family’s ever done before, considering our general lack of familial enthusiasm for snow or Christmas, but with the Clam likely to be stuck working Dec 25 for the next few years as a rookie firefighter, we thought it might be nice to do something different this year, and get away somewhere new (but affordable).

Following Tahoe, it was off to Florida for New Years and early January: the Pirate’s parents had a condo we could stay at for free, and frequent flyer miles took care of the flight, and since the spring teaching term didn’t start for me until late January, it wasn’t hard to justify a free trip…With no expectations, once there, I pretty much had my mind blown by a pilgrimage to Weeki Wachee Springs, to experience their legendary mermaid show:

cracked out on mermaids

mermaids, gettin’ it crackin’
pirate, wofford, gator, photo opp

And THEN, (as addressed in previous posts) having escaped the jaws of gator-death, it was off to Manila for a couple of weeks, on a highly unexpected, but highly amazing, family-oriented trip with Nanay. (Three cheers again for the precarious but flexible employment calendar of an adjunct university instructor!)

rollin’ with the ates

various mathays

magboo/ramos/de dios clan

more mathay action

ates+metal detectors+shopping mall=highly entertained wofford

I also got to squeeze in some visits with my own much-missed crew of the usual suspects, and got to catch up, if only briefly, on what’s happening, art-wise and life-wise, in Manila.

juan, juoff, denis at LR

carlos, woff discuss cheezballs at LR

romeo, gerry, sherry, woff, lena at mag:net katipunan

gerry, rock at mag:net

yason+friend at cubao x

woff, bea, lena, denis, donna, peewee at manila contemporary

Sigh. Sooooo great.
AND, since this laggardly post has dragged on forever already, a few last highlights from the trip:

at long last, a pilgrimage to the Marikina Shoe Museum, thanks to my cousins patrick and cindy

surreptitious snap of the imelda shrine inside the shoe museum

Marikina: home of the world’s biggest shoes (real full-scale leather shoes–not a sculpture!)

Needless to say, after the exhaustion of 2008, I feel fully re-charged, and brimming with inspiration. There are several new bodies of work I’m about to embark upon, and it’s much of what’s happened in these last 6 weeks that have made this possible.

Happy Chinese New Year, by the way.