Flash Me || Live Tattooing @ Cooler Gallery

By Marie Kloor & Dan Nielsen for Scrimshaw Collective

“You have any tattoos?” was the question of the evening. Scrimshaw’s New York crew are becoming regulars at Cooler Gallery, the Navy Yard’s former icebox, where we discovered Kate Hush and her neon exhibit: Female Behavior. This latest visit upped the ante to onsite tattoos!

The show, dubbed, Flash Me, combined visual art with live tattoos. The gallery invited all types of artists to create flash sheets – the predesigned artwork that is displayed on the walls of tattoo parlors to give customers inspiration for tattoos to get inked quickly. There were over twenty wildly different flash sheets on display, each perfectly capturing the essence of those artists that submitted work. Brave attendees could choose their favorite piece and have an onsite artist immortalize the design on them right then and there. Pain is temporary… ink is forever!

“Are you getting one tonight?” The next question we asked as we made our way through the crowd surrounding the live tattooing stage. Most of the people getting tatted were adding to already substantial collections of ink, but there were also a few first timers in attendance. A phenomenal carrot tattoo was a surprising winner of the night. We spoke with a handful of flash sheet artists, who seemed slightly awestruck that absolute strangers were getting their bodies permanently inked with their work.

We cumulatively had three tattoos amongst the Scrimshaw gang (albeit all are on one member of the crew), but none of us bit the bullet to add additional nor new. The sign up sheet was completely full and the tattooing went on much later than expected. Modelos were flowing across the Brooklyn crowd, as all bore witness to the artists’ live work. Before leaving we were invited to attend yet another great show at Cooler Gallery (this place is truly unbelievable). Make sure to follow us for details on future exhibits -- you should considering attending with us!

IMG_0001.jpg

The Dark Side of Neon ⚡ Kate Hush

By Marie Kloor for Scrimshaw Collective

Some people grow up knowing exactly what they want to do. Others spend a lifetime exploring, sometimes never landing on their passion. For a few lucky ones, their true calling finds them. In this case, neon found Kate Hush.

Kate didn’t plan on becoming a neon artist. She arrived in NYC by train in 2010 with a background in graphic design, and hoped to freelance in the city’s crowded art scene. One day she randomly stepped into a neon class, and to use her words, “never left.” She quickly mastered the medium and now teaches the very same classes that sparked her own interest. Fast forward a few years later and Kate is dominating the neon scene in the city and even hosting her own show in one of Scrimshaw's favorite haunts…The Brooklyn Navy Yard.

When news of her event at Cooler Galleries came across our radar we couldn't have confirmed our attendance sooner. With no subway access to the area, we hitched a ride on the old B62 city bus and thirteen stops later found ourselves near the waterfront in the warehouses of the Navy Yard.

As we entered the minimally designed and recently opened space, our first thought was how epic it would be to live here. The Gallery is in a restored shipping warehouse - it’s large enough to fit three of our own NYC apartments and comes with an open kitchen and a loft to boot. The lights were slightly dimmed and Kate’s art glowed against the stark walls.

Despite the bright colors and electricity coursing through the room, the show had a darker side. Titled ‘Female Behavior’, the neon images beaming back to us showcased wicked women. The concept plays off the femme fatale and the idea that the woman is evil, without redeeming qualities. As Kate says, "You're going to call them all crazy bitches anyway, so why not light them that way?” A woman is being carried through water holding a knife behind her victim’s back. One is lounging in a bathtub while blood drips off her outstretched hand; another washes blood out of her hair. We had to look twice at some pieces to grasp what made these women wicked.

With neon’s reemergence, it has become a newly celebrated art medium. Kate works at Precision Neon during the day, teaching classes and creating the ubiquitous neon signs found in most retail stores. Neon work requires the tools more typical of a carpenter than a painter. Kate dons goggles and creates every separate segment out of glass tubing. She then molds segments of different shapes and colors together by holding them over fire. And it’s no small endeavor; each work of art is made of over 100 feet of glass and usually requires some additional manpower to bend into place. After attending her show, we had a new appreciation for the pure sweat that goes into making any neon sign, much less the amazing and intricate images represented by her art.

Truly impressed by the mystery captured with this relatively raw medium, we departed in an electric haze. We’ve developed a newfound respect not only for the neon signs we encounter on any given city block, but also for the people that create them. After being assured by Kate that with some planning, sweat, muscle and electricity, even we could create a neon piece... now we are absolutely hooked on the idea of a glowing Scrimshaw sign against a white washed brick wall! We'll keep you posted if this dream ever becomes a reality, but in the meantime be sure to check out Kate and her electric art for a truly unique buzz.
 

Check out Kate’s show at Cooler Galleries (until January 31st)

Join us for a neon class at Precision Neon

SK8-ART with Fillin Global

By Dan Nielsen for Scrimshaw Collective

New York is a city of layers, from its massive architecture and bustling exterior, down to a world of underground shows and word-of-mouth events. We’re always on the hunt for a new exhibit or gallery opening, and it just so happens a friend of ours recently pointed us in the direction of Fillin Global, an innovative artist agency in New York. We were invited to their second ever event, SK8-ART, and couldn’t have been more stoked.

Walking up to the address we realized we’d arrived at one of our favorite underground dance bars on Bowery, King’s Cross, which for whatever reason has tragically closed its doors (pour one out for all those late night dance sessions we’ll never forget). Confused, we quickly reread the invite. We definitely had it right, but there was no one working the entrance to indicate where to go. A simple, handwritten note by the door caught our eye – it was taped to the call box for the housing above King’s Cross. The directions on the note were simple enough (buzz 3) and they led us up some aged, creaky stairs (as I’m sure you’re all too familiar with living in this city). At the designated landing, a bouncer waved us into what used to be an old apartment, but now resembled a veritable shrine to street art and skate! The simplicity of the space and set up only lent to the authenticity we hoped we would find – not much more than a couch, a table for serving drinks and every inch of the walls covered in skate decks.

We quickly grabbed an old fashioned and began mingling with the crowd. Clearly we had stumbled across an intimate setting of friends, fellow artists and family members. The core gathering was welcoming nonetheless, and seemed happy to share some inspiration about the work on display. Some of the featured artists included Dain, Gum Shoe, JPOart, Kat Hoelck Goblé, and many more.  

Besides speaking with a handful of the artists, the best part was meeting the two partners of Fillin Global; Jackie and Tommy. Per their newsletter, the agency co-founders are well rehearsed in the struggle of being artists and creatives themselves, and felt compelled to dedicate their time, energy and passion to the industry, and those working within it. They described the artists as friends as opposed to clients, often broke conversation to give a quick hug and hello to family members, and beamed with pride as “sold” stickers went up next to the pieces that had been claimed.

The combination of the unassuming space, artists on-hand speaking to their work, meeting the founders and event coordinators, plus the old fashioneds, we were feeling pretty elated. Honestly, it could not have been a better start to a weekend – well, perhaps if we’d been able to lock down the Dain masterpiece (pictured below), but to be frank if was a bit out of our price range so probably for the best!  Head online to FillingGlobal.com and check out the artist bios and the remaining work still for sale – if you are a fan of NY street art and skate culture you will definitely find something to your liking. Stay tuned for more events from Fillin Global!

A Fashionable Experience: Bradley Theodore Returns to NYC

By Marie Kloor & Dan Nielsen for Scrimshaw Collective

Last week we were fortunate enough to attend the opening of The Bradley Theodore Experience at ACA Galleries, at 529 West 20th Street, above the Highline. Bradley Theodore is known for creating art using fashion icons as inspiration, so it was only fitting that his exhibit debuted during NYC’s Fall Fashion Week. However, stepping out of the service elevator into the iconic Chelsea gallery, we were greeted not only by fashion types, but also by an eclectic crowd hailing from industries such as finance, media and tech - truly showing Bradley’s diverse group of fans.

It’s not a surprise that many New Yorkers feel a connection to Bradley’s art, it’s become prominent in the city, from street art on the Lower East Side to framed paintings in the Dream Downtown Hotel. It was over a year ago when we first visited Bradley’s collection in NYC, and we were excited to see over 30 of the artist’s new works from his hiatus overseas. The event also marked Bradley’s first ever solo exhibit in NYC, and ACA Galleries curated the experience flawlessly.

Upon arrival, we were served Chandon and Moet champagne out of colorful Bradley Theodore-inspired bottles and encouraged to take photos with the iconic Anna Wintour and Karl Lagerfeld installation. The new additions were prominently displayed, showcasing the artist’s distinctly vibrant style, and derived inspiration from his recent international travels. Bradley’s iconic skeletal portraits featuring Anna Wintour, Karl Lagerfeld, Kate Moss and George Washington were also on display.

The real crowd pleaser however was a live Virtual Reality demonstration featuring Bradley himself. The demo showcased Bradley’s technique, as he painted on a screen using a 3-D headset and virtual color palette. Viewers were truly immersed in The Bradley Theodore Experience as they saw a painting created in front of their eyes. The demo represented ACA’s first ever interactive, VR environment as part of an exhibition and was yet another example of the gallery’s prowess for curating events.

After completing the VR demonstration, Bradley took it upon himself to meet and greet his fans. We had heard he often spends time discussing his art and inspiration with anyone bold enough to ask, but what unfolded was beyond expectation. He expressed words of encouragement to aspiring artists, took photos, and even gave out a few hugs. When our turn came to speak with him we asked about our favorite painting For the Love of Kate II featuring Kate Moss with a cigarette. Bradley observed the painting for a minute before answering, “It’s not the look that’s important...it’s her attitude”. Bradley followed up with a firm handshake, a healthy clap on the shoulder, and a very genuine “thank you for coming and supporting me.” As we were about to leave we saw him waiting in line at the open bar...at his own event; the ultimate sign of humility and respect.

Thank you to ACA Galleries for the invitation, and of course a huge thanks to Bradley Theodore. Please enjoy more shots of the exhibition below and make sure to check it out yourself at ACA Galleries in Chelsea.

Street Art in Flux

A street artist uses the city as the canvas for their creative expression.  New Yorker’s see this expression on the city walls, but rarely ever get to see these works being created.  Which is why, the opportunity to work with Flux Studios, bringing the creative process into the light of day, is a dream become reality for many graffiti artists.

Flux, a music-recording studio with a vintage heart and a modern vibe, recently gave six notable local street artists the opportunity to create and express on their blank canvas of a rooftop.  The artists in attendance were – Yes One, Such, Shiro, Oolaf, Phetus and Giz.  The roof is a small mecca of local street graffiti representing New York’s distinct beauty and love of art.  

Drawing Waves Unlike Any Other Day

A quintessential morning in SoHo: Grab an iced coffee to go at La Colombemake your way to Jack's Wife Freda for Brunch, and then stroll down the cobblestone streets to a unique museum, slightly off the beaten path, called The Drawing Center.

The Drawing Center chooses artists to explore the medium of drawing as primary, dynamic, and relevant ways to discover different cultures, inspirations, and unique themes.  Scrimshaw Collective ventured to The Drawing Center for its prime exhibit in "The Lab," to see Robin Rhode's Drawing Waves.

Robin Rhode is a South-African born, Berlin-based artist focusing on stop-action photography while combining drawing with elements of real life.  The exhibit focuses on two of Rhode's pieces, Breaking Waves and Paries Pictus - Draw the Waves.  

Breaking Waves focuses on a boy carving through the surf of an illusionistic ocean, painted onto a city wall.  

Breaking Waves - Robin Rhode

Paries Pictus-Draw the Waves is an interactive piece where children from Manhattan's PS 42 Benjamin Altman School and PS 130 Hernando DeSoto School were able to draw their idea of waves using custom made oil crayons, as an act of graffiti.  Rhode's hoped idea of combining the silhouettes of 17th-century mercantile ships and the graffiti drawings of the children would engage urban youths in history while promoting imagination and creativity.  

Robin Rhode's Drawing Waves exhibit at The Drawing Center is open until August 30th.  The exhibit is fascinating but please make sure to explore the rest of the museum.  For those who don't wish to spend an entire day looking at paintings, don't fret!  The Drawing Center has a modern look with two main spaces featuring multiple interactive pieces chosen by the museum's curators.  The Drawing Center has a cool vibe and is a unique staple of the SoHo art scene.  


Art Miami NYC: A Meteoric Rise

Art Miami New York:

Imagine that you’re surrounded by the world’s most prestigious contemporary and modern art. International collectors are showing off their prized possessions as artists blend in with the crowd, only visible if you really know who you’re looking for.   

This was the scene at the second installment of Art Miami New York.  It was a sprawling display of art in multiple mediums, ranging from paintings to photography, street art to sculptures.  The sheer quantity of notable artists was truly impressive. While Banksy was clearly the crowd favorite, the immense talent at each gallery’s station was remarkable. 

While some art doesn’t always resonate with the viewer, you can’t help but respect the time and the craft that goes into the art hanging on the walls.  And while there are the onlookers who walk by what seem like simple paintings saying, “I could do that,” there are also those who understand the passion that go into every brush stroke or click of the camera. 

At least one thing about Art Miami New York wasn’t interpretive: the meteoric rise of contemporary and modern art.  Many of the most coveted pieces at the show sold for astronomically high prices, as most of the crowd at Art Miami New York were wealthy individuals expecting they’d purchased the next big thing.

But, once you got past investors, you could talk on a personal level with the artists and collectors.  This is how one should approach new art - genuinely show interest in the artist’s work, appreciate their passion and authenticity, and be open to learning from those who spend their time and effort trying to find common ground between the piece and the viewer while showing a genuine voice amid the noise. 

Art Miami New York was a massive success in promoting the originality, newness, and the genius of the contemporary and modern art world.  Three gallery owners, who really embodied this vision and spoke eloquently of their featured artists, were the Sponder Gallery, Contessa Gallery, and the Joerg Heitsch Gallery.  Some of their major works of art are shown below.  Featured at the Sponder Gallery was photographer Michael Halsband, who will be highlighted on Scrimshaw Collective at a point in the near future.