Friday, December 9, 2011

In conversation: Benjamin Echeverria+ Laurie Reid with Lawrence Rinder

Art making and Collaboration: what things are, what they could be, what they are not.

“Our work stems from an intuitive process that extends, we hope, through the work to the viewing experience. The work does not exemplify, but rather embodies the emotional and psychological content inherent in a form of creativity that searches for and comes in contact with meaning through the creation of the work itself.”

Kenneth Baker's review of Laure Reid + Benjamin Echeverria's exhibition

Take a look at Kenneth Baker's review. The review raises many interesting questions about coherence, collaboration and a contemporary culture in general.

Benjamin Echeverria + Laurie Reid at G16

We opened with Laurie Reid and Benjamin Echeverria on November 11th for their collaborative project that is still currently on display. Here are some photos of the exhibition

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tucker in the sunday Times

Tucker in the Sunday Times!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Urban Digital Color and Ari Marcopoulos

Urban Digital printed a new series with artist Ari Marcopoulos, currently on display at Ratio 3

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


September 9th - October 30, 2011

Opening Reception with the artist
September 9th from 6-9 pm

Friday, August 26, 2011

New Edition with Ari Marcopoulos

In these compositions Ari uses several of his photographs to make multi-pass Xerox prints, resulting in new compositions born out of chance. Using the Intaglio process, we elevate the simple and direct beauty of the low-fi Xerox technique through the lavish tradition of Photogravure. The edition will be presented from September 9th to October 30th at Gallery 16.

Monday, June 6, 2011


Kenneth Baker and Mark Van Proyen
both weigh in with thoughtful reviews of Tucker's new exhibition.

Mark Van Proyen's review for Squarecylinder can be read here

Kenneth Baker's review for the SF
Chronicle can be read here

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

"blow up" by Jonn Herschend

blow up from Jonn Herschend on Vimeo.

A short documentary about artist Tucker Nichols as he prepares for his May 2011 exhibition at Gallery 16 in San Francisco. Not everything goes entirely according to plan.

Tucker Nichols at Gallery 16, San Francisco, May 13 - June 30, 2011

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Tucker Nichols interview with Dave Eggers and Gallery 16 installation photos

As Interviewed by Dave Eggers

DE: Let's start with this: How many pieces of paper are there on these walls?

TN: At the gallery? Hard to say just yet, somewhere between 30 and 60. I won’t really know what’s in the show until I get all the stuff in there. It's a luxury of having a show in your hometown.

Let's say there are 46. Next question: I notice that you've drawn on many different-colored papers. Why not use the same color? Seems kind of willful to be using different colors so much.

I’m always on the lookout for paper with a bit of history. It sets the tone for the drawing, like a location in a movie. White paper is good too but sometimes I like different scenery.

It still seems willful, but moving on: Why do you write words on some things, and other things you leave without words?

The words mostly come from real text I've seen out in the world, and I like to mix some advertising into every show or book I make. Advertising is inescapable these days.

Was there a time in your life when advertising was escapable? You talk like you grew up before advertising was invented.

I don’t think there used to be ads on the thing that separates my groceries from the person in front of me.

Why work on paper? There's something so iconic about your work, but most of it's on paper, and often on paper of an everyday kind, which lends a weird fragility to the work. If I lived in your house, I would be afraid to ever take out the recycling, for fear that there would be some priceless work there among the newsprint. So again, why paper?

Paper is essential, even in our new digital age. It's everywhere. But a stretched canvas has no place in our lives beyond a gallery really. When you see a painting on canvas you have no choice but to think it was made to be a painting. But something on paper could exist for so many reasons, so things open up a bit. Also I make a lot of bad drawings and paper is much easier to destroy. I make paintings on panels too but even there I want there to be a slight chance that they were made for some other purpose, like a sign or a map.

Can you tell the readers where you work? I’ve been to your studio, and you have chickens out front, and a fruitful garden, and many cats. I felt like I'd gone to Vermont.

Things have changed. The chickens moved up to a farm in Sonoma with an aggressive rooster named Fucking Lucky, and I moved my studio out to the Headlands near the Golden Gate Bridge. Now I work in an old military building where they used to fix the missiles. It’s a crazy nice location, with hawks and bobcats and the ocean. The winter storms shake the whole building, which is mostly fun.

Here in this gallery you have all of this artwork tacked up in a certain way. When someone buys one of these, how should they display it in their home? That is, is it wrong to frame one? Do they lose their potency if put behind glass, or separated from their fellow drawings?

I like forcing people to figure out how something I made fits into their lives. When I send a drawing to someone in the mail, I know it could end up taped to the refrigerator, in a drawer with the scissors, in a fancy frame or in the trash. It’s good when someone else finishes the job. For this show, most things will be framed, but there will be clusters of drawings and panels that are intended to be broken up and reconfigured. It’s kind of like a sofa and table display in a furniture store. You can buy them together, but maybe you just want the sofa.

You produce a lot of work. How often do you forget you did something, only to see it on a wall somewhere and you say, Oh yeah, that was pretty good?

It's true I don't remember making some of the things I see, especially if they leave my studio right away or I bury them under a pile of other things for a while. Seeing them later I sometimes think, hey I like that, but just as often I think, I don't want to take responsibility for that but there's nobody else to blame. If it's still in my possession I can pretend it never happened, but once it's out in the world it's like a bad quote on your yearbook page or an outfit you clearly thought looked cool from a photo from 8th grade.

Can you talk about the sculpture in the show? It's not a form I immediately associate you with, but that's probably just me being dumb. I would think your approach to the ephemeral nature of things, a la paper, is different when you're making a 200-pound object that could stop a bullet.

I like sculpture because it's even more direct than drawing. It's not a depiction of something, it just is the thing right in front of you. I hate storing the stuff but once I started making sculptures a few years ago, I couldn't stop. It's satisfying to try to make sad things that wash up on the beach look important.

Hey, I never thanked you for recommending cutting my own hair.

It’s the only way to go. I’ve been cutting my own since 1993.

I'm at least a year in and nobody's said a word about how dumb my hair looks. What else should we be doing ourselves? Filling cavities? Replacing the brakes on our cars? I suddenly feel really capable.

1. I have the tools to do tooth extraction. Seriously.
2. I cannot fix your brakes but I can counsel you in other ways of stopping.

...and some installation shots of Tucker Nichols' new show at G16.
The show opened on May 13th and runs through June 30th.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Deborah Oropallo Art In America Review

Deborah Oropallo's Atypical Archetypes

Deborah Oropallo's "Tale Spin" at Gallery 16 in San Francisco is a big, bold show of female fairy-tale characters and other alluring archetypes—Snow White, Goldie Locks, the French maid and the Catholic schoolgirl, among others. Each of these collaged pieces amounts to an almost life-size full figure or portrait, comprising layered pieces of sheer material, each with a part of a figure printed on it. The figure is made up of about 10 sourced images, sourced from costume websites, which are assembled and mounted on paper to form a single woman. Gas masks and bondage accessories also appear-these are characters facing today's world.

The 56-year-old, Berkeley-based Oropallo addresses each new body of work, as a series, distinctly different from previous work. "It's not just searching for the new; it's building on the old," Oropallo told A.i.A. during a recent tour of her show. "As a painter you are painting on the shoulders of everyone who came before you, and all of the work you have seen and made in the past 30 years—that's in every piece."

In 2009, she made the "Wild Wild West.Show," an exploration of cowgirl imagery. The 2008 "Guise" series, featured in a solo exhibition at San Francisco's de Young Museum, comprised prints that melded 17th- and 18th-century male portraits with images of women modeling lingerie.

In this latest work, Oropallo deftly updates age-old tales, a theme Oropallo has treated previously. The "Guise" series demonstrates the similarities in poses between her subjects, begging questions about portrayal of power and how it differs between the sexes. Fortified (2011) shows an adult Rapunzel. With her braided hair tied like a rope-ladder down the front of her body and shiny black gloved arms encircling her head, this modern woman is going to protect and save herself.

Uniforms and costumes are deployed for their relationships to gender and power. The interest stems from Oropallo's childhood, she explained, including memories of her uncle's grand presence in full Navy garb, as well as her experience wearing the traditional blue-and-green uniform to Catholic school for years.

Oropallo grew up in Hackensack, New Jersey, and started making art at a young age. But it wasn't until she started the fine art graduate school program at UC Berkeley, where she earned her MFA, that she got her first formal art training, studying under esteemed Bay Area Figurative painter Elmer Bischoff. Shades of those early self-teaching, however, continue to be visible in her work today.

"I actually think of paint-by-numbers paintings as the original conceptual paintings... They have a prescribed beginning and end," said Oropallo in an interview for her 2001 midcareer retrospective at the San Jose Museum of Art. "This has been in my work since I was a kid. I copied things out of how-to books, always using this type of methodology."

Oropallo's work is structured according to a modular, graphic, Pop ethic. She used to often work with silk-screened images or patterns, all sourced from photographs. For the 2003 series "Replica," she arranged repeating depictions of duck figurines for Spill, a toy suburban tract house for Free House. For Oropallo's 2005 "Stretch" pieces, she digitally pushed, pulled, and stretched, images to the verge of being unrecognizable. What remained was their contemporaneity.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Installation views of Deborah Oropallo's new show TALE SPIN. The show consists of a group of twenty-two new pieces, equal parts painting, printmaking and collage. Oropallo uses these techniques to construct radically composed portraits of imaginary woman. As source material for these compositions, Oropallo draws upon her intrigue with early traditions of children's fairy tales. Fairy tales were moral plays meant to scare girls into being good. These portraits embody the complexities of girls/women, their submissive/dominant roles, and touch on their corresponding thematic costumes.

Friday, February 11, 2011

We are not having any trouble in our department despite what you’ve heard

Here is a fantastic glimpse into our friend Jonn Herschend's film. It was made while in he and Tucker Nichols were in residency in Copenhagen.

"This piece was created for the exhibition entitled Koh-i-noor, in January of 2011 in Copenhagen. I was in the Copenhagen’s Artist in Residency (CPH AIR) program during this time and decided to create something that would change over the course of the exhibition. It became a site specific fiction, starting with an apology video (Part 1), which introduced the characters only through text, and then a performance in the space while we were shooting, and finally the promised video (Part 2)… see below for an excerpt.

The show’s theme involved chaos and I wanted this piece to appear to be a promotional video that Den Frie had commissioned. It needed to look and feel real. I also wanted it to be specifically for the Danish people who would come to see the show. So I began working with the translation as an element of further confusion in the guise of clarity."

Monday, January 24, 2011

Tucker Nichols In Copenhagen

I'm in Copenhagen on the invitation of Jonn Herschend and Koh-i-nor, a Danish art collective,
for an exhibition at Den Frie Museum.

In Copenhagen all your needs are met

everything is made with intention

you will find astonishing sandwich spreads

and distinguished headwear

Den Frie is a special place

maybe the nicest galleries I've ever
been in

Of course, I chose to make work in the less glamorous parts
of the museum

Sometime I question these decisions

I was planning to do text pieces on all the windows
in the lobby of the museum.

but I had been making all these dot drawings back in SF and then I was
noticing how often you see dots in a grid here

maybe it's a lego thing.

They use dots to communicate things
in the subway without words.
Enter the train here.

this side for going up

haven't figured out what these ones meant yet

don't bump into the glass

eat this

So, I decided to make vague advertising messages
using colored dots.


going in

Stairs leading up to the kitchen

directors office

where they post press clippings

broadcasting dot messages as if they meant something

like it was urgent

as it turns out, to people in Copenhagen, this actually means
"keep christiania free", the nearby anti-establishment commune area
that has it's own government and laws

I'm going there tonight to understand
what I'm supporting

I also made this bulletin board piece
in the conference room

a map of sorts using the dots and grid

like a bulletin board at the university where people speak
this graphic language of dots and grids.

But, mostly it was an exercise
in futility of symbols, no matter
how many you put there.

I told the director it was an attempt to help
them with their future strategy and fund
raising plans

Someone put the floor cleaner in front
of it and I decided to leave it there

So Christiania is a magical land and it
was true what they said about the three

The upper label translates to "your opinions and
habits are protected"

even the handstamps for the jazz club is
in on it

Shhh, the older woman said as she drew the dot on
my hand promise not to tell anyone the code.

Update 2:
the next day at the state museum I run into
this security guard whose logo really confuses