We spent all week posting artist interviews, and now we’re putting them together to make one handy recommendation list. There are 500 open studios to view this weekend, not to mention all the event spaces. Don’t go in blind. If you want to preserve your sanity, use this list and refer to our map. It will make your life easier.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: David McBride
David McBride makes his paintings with a stencil and blue, red, and brown glaze. The result is a studio filled with what appears to be a lot of chocolate brown paint. The importance of the subjects is not immediately apparent: in one painting, he pairs a roller coaster with a clothesline of hanging flags, while in another, he fills the canvas with botanical illustrations. The key to understanding the work might be the 3D glasses painted above, which remind us that these paintings, like everything else we see, are constructed from light. It’s an almost obsessive interest in practice, and we like that.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Lee Lee Chan
LeeLee Chan’s sculpture, painting, and photos all fit squarely in the same world. The paintings and photos focus heavily on reflection, while her sculpture combines reflective, industrial items with organic elements. There’s a preciousness in her placement and handling of delicate clusters that seems to talk about both nature and commodity. Evoking the language of Eileen Quinlan, Chan’s manipulation of scale and focal length produce paintings and sculptures that seem otherworldly.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Tatiana Berg
Tatiana Berg’s paintings look like her lipstick and her shirts. That’s meant as a compliment — she clearly likes pastel, loose patterns and the 80′s, and so do we. Berg is also rarely content with standard canvas shapes. In one metallic-colored piece, she combines five separate canvases to create an anvil-like shape. In another series of tent-shaped paintings she equips the pieces with wheels and brakes. Our favorite, though, may be the painting in which Berg overlays colorful polka-dots with a creamy transparent white. She then runs through the paint with her fingers as though it were fog on a car window.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: MaryKate Maher
MaryKate Maher’s work is a little like a Matthew Ronay sculpture minus the steroids. She’s got the hand-made abstract sculptures and the discrete arrangements of objects, but skips the cum finish lines and hanging anal cupcake beads. Instead, Maher opts for scary. In one piece, a lamb—covered in what appears to be human flesh—has had one leg transformed into gold. In another, what appears to be a witch’s broom is coated repeatedly with black resin. When Maher tells us there’s no intended narrative, it seems like the spookiest answer possible.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Max Razdow
Gatherings of expressionistic figures communing in mythical settings define Max Razdow’s paintings and drawings. While some of his pen and ink drawings verge on storybook as in the “Future Myths” series, others are weirder, and more open to interpretation. “Man Speaking (to computer),” is one such a example, as we have no idea how to interprete a barrel-chested figure shooting blue mist out of his mouth into a black triangle. In addition to having exhibited multiple times in Belgium and Brooklyn, Max Razdow shows with Freight + Volume.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Eli Ping
Do a search for Eli Ping on the Bushwick Open Studio website and his name will come back nine times. He’s in a lot of shows. None of these results, though, bring back his studio, which will also be open during the event. There, an assortment of Ping’s work will be on display, many evoking a seemingly enormous number of vaginas.
We consider Ping an artist to watch. His paintings resemble woodcuts, but are actually made with Tyvek, a lightweight material used to make Fedex envelopes and tents. Layers of paint peek through the work, creating surfaces that look worked or, alternatively, aged. Ping shows at Susan Inglett Gallery in New York.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Max Warsh
Max Warsh’s collages are so fluidly integrated that the result seems to be a liquid, or a fine mesh. Architectural grids and gates are often woven with torn chunks of stone walls, or cut shapes are dispersed on paper like a floating puzzle. Warsh brings that sensibility to architectural photographs, as well; a brick staircase, or a cropped photo of a tree trunk next to a wall, are almost indistinguishable from collage.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Björn Meyer-Ebrecht
The sheer volume of architectural references in Bjorn Meyer-Ebrecht’s work borders on obsessive. He tapes together ink renderings of institutional structures, he collages stacked chairs as though building blocks, and he builds maquettes of buildings. Even his bookshelves look more like vertical floor plans than furniture. We’re looking forward to seeing more of that kind of focus this week at Bushwick Open Studios.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Ginny Casey
There are customary systems for composing an image which become clear after a long day of trolling artists’ websites— central shapes, which fit comfortably inside the edges of the picture plane, and room for the eye to move back in space. Ginny Casey’s paintings defy that mold, producing the same clunky, sentimental quality that Susan Rothenberg and Phillip Guston do so well. It’s a quality that only happens in painting.
Allie completed her BFA in 2009 at RISD and moved to Bushwick almost immediately upon graduation. Her work takes many forms; in one series she paints within a triangle shape on mylar, exploring different modes of painting, in another, she uses cold water dye with acrylic polymer on canvas create a raw, sharp-and-blurred effect. The color sensibility and the simplicity of the action is both beautiful and unassuming.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Danielle Mysliwiec & Elsie Kagan
Elsie Kagan makes luscious paintings of falling cherubs and bright skys. Danielle Mysliwiec makes paintings by weaving paint together. They share a studio and have been painting for years.
Recommended Bushwick Open Studio: Aaron Williams
It looks like Aaron Williams focuses on material but he doesn’t. He’s a master with a can of spray paint, and his surfaces always seem carefully considered, even when working with garbage. This is the natural bias of Williams hand, which is deft even when removed from the process. In his recent work, Williams crumples up landscape posters and swimsuit models pin ups and coats the surfaces with paint. These pieces are defined both by his economic manipulation of paint and the photographic scraps Williams decides to leave untouched. Here and in earlier work, Williams mixes atmosphere, melodrama, and illustrative sci-fi balls of light to create a genuine sense of ephemeral power.