Saturday, June 22, 2013


This is the second time that I experiment with using the remainders of carton that I've used to frame drawings, to make new and irregular frames.
This is the first one

This second one, I really like how it turned out, as well. Maybe even more.
In this case, it's even more of an experiment, because I didn't use any additional paper to protect the back of the drawing and I didn't use any tape on the back of the supporting paper. The drawing is basically, being held by the pieces of carton, it's kind of floating in there. And, in the back, my business card. I'm going to have this at work tomorrow, for sale at ten dollars.

So, thank you for reading, this is all for now! Please don't forget to like my Facebook page and share it with your friends: Gabriela Handal Arte
See you next time!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


The painting that I'm going to write about today, has no title. I started it over one of the two canvases that I put together the wood for, cut it and stuck it together and put the fabric on them. This canvas and "Arcoiris Autopsia" are so far rarities, because of their size, they're both 4 x 4 feet, work that I've willingly done at that size.

So, I'd started this painting some months back, got only so far in sketching part and I wasn't entirely sure what I wanted to do to it, I think I know that I wanted it to be fast and watery, definitely fast. It then occurred to me to do it, kind of like the painting I did for "Vendetta Audiovisual", which I did in layers, from lighter colors to darker colors.
I used orange to sketch, then red and then purple and blue, and these are all light, relatively watery layers, so that they can show.
I decided I'd do something similar with this one and, maybe today, I decided I would only use primary colors again.
And so, she happened.
I like her facial expression, in general. I think I see some sort of anger or resentment, she looks at me and was looking at me, as I worked on her, even while she waited for me to work on her, she had this same stare. Of a creature or a beast, not entirely human, there is some hostility. It actually reminded me, for moments, of the work of Mario Benjamin, because sometimes she has precisely that angry and resentful stare. There is some violence in her and in the brushstrokes.
There's a lot of paint on a couple of spots, I did make it so that it was clunky and pasty, although I'm not a really big fan of texture.

So, anyway, here are some progress shots and the end result.

So, yes. No title for this piece that I finished today, don't forget my Facebook page, which I pay much more attention to, than any other of these social media type things: Gabriela Handal Arte

Thank you for reading and see you next time!

Monday, June 10, 2013

"Contemporary art is a farce"

El arte contemporáneo es una farsa

Me gustan las declaraciones sencillas y verídicas.
I like it when a statement is poignant and simple.

I guess finding familiarity in this article makes me some kind of art elitist, although I try my best to not judge and to vocalize it when I see a work of art that looks like bullshit to me. I hesitate long and hard, before going to an art exhibit, because I'm quite sure that I won't like what I see, I don't like most contemporary art. I don't GET performances and installations. My personal definition of "art" is in a way obsolete and old-fashioned, because I generally consider "art" something on a canvas, drawings, paintings, sculptures. And even then, a drawing, a painting or a sculpture, might just not feel like art to me, because it looks like absolutely no work was put into it, it looks arbitrary, something that was done to kill time.

HOWEVER, I also think that I don't really know what art is, I've been asked this question before. "Art" is a very wide and vague term, so wide and vague, that almost anything can be called "art". Does this put a damper on art? How can we put the canned shit of that Italian artist next to the David? Next to the Monalisa? Is that fair? Is canned shit really entitled to be called "art", just as much as a painting by Dalí? These cans of shit have been in Sotheby's and fucking museums, how dare you question their validity as art? Artist's shit in Wikipedia, so you know that I ain't blowing smoke up yo ass.

The article talks about ready mades, Marcel Duchamp's doing. I used to hate this guy, because he's the one that made ready mades happen, that's what started on art being what it is now, but I saw his work, his paintings and I liked them and I reconciled myself with him. He just happened to have something else in mind.

I will be the last one to say that something that somebody took the time to produce is bullshit, because I'm nobody to question wether it's genuine or not. I'm nobody to say, this is the work of some old, filthy fucking rich lady, that was bored, 'cuz her husband don't spend enough time with her and thought she's get dirty with some paint. This is the work of a spoiled fucking mamma's boy that can't decide what he is in life, so he is now an "artist", because we're all so fucking eccentric and directionless, drunks, drug using pieces of shit, you goddamn son of a bitch.
I don't know wether whoever found real solace and comfort in producing that which looks like nothing but an accidental spill of paint to me. I have no right.
I'm nobody to question it and there is also absolutely no way to know, wether it's genuine or not. Nobody can say they can.

On the other hand, I also think the ones that say they can tell, like the art critics are full of fucking shit the great majority of the time and it ties in with what I just wrote above. Art is a very personal, subjective and relative thing.
You not liking a piece of art, doesn't make it shit and it doesn't make it mean nothing, SOMEBODY loves that thing which you hate.
Moreover, basically because of what I was writing just now, an art critic has no way of knowing what a piece of art means or how it's going to impact society in the future or anything. An art critic can't say "add this, take this away and your work is going to be completely different". Art, I think, is also very instinctive and complex and sometimes it just doesn't have an explanation. And I love that the article validates that for me, too. I have no explanation for the pieces that I produce, very seldom I do, and I don't think them having an explanation is going to determine wether they're great or not. It's very common, when I read the pamphlets in an art exhibit, all of this SHIT, about society and how this piece of work criticizes society, because society is crap and everyone is full of shit and boring things that make me want to shoot myself.
If you really need to spew all of this to make your work mean something, there will be something off for me.

On the other other hand, I do think there is such a thing as going too far, I do think it's easy for performances and installations to be iffy and it's easy to go from I will change this lightbulb in my room to "oh, man, THE LIGHT, I painted my room with new light, all I had to do was change this lightbulb and my whole fucking world has changed, I will call this "the light of life", my new performance, I will charge people to come see me do this over and over again". "I am combing my hair, my hair comes out of my head, I have thoughts in my head, I am untangling the thoughts that come out of my head and they tangle themselves again, OH GOD MY SOUL, this is a performance right here". But performances and installations are also considerably new things, and they have to go through their own evolution and they have a right to exist.

I have attempted to take part in performances and installations, I've done a performance/installation, only that one, so far and I did enjoy it, doing it, I enjoyed myself, I like what resulted of it. It was titled "Drifter" and there was an explanation for it and everything, I don't feel like less of an artist for having done it and I don't regret it.

What does this article say about me? I've been referring to myself as a visual artist for several years now, do I feel exempt from what the article says? I've read the article twice, once yesterday, when it came to my attention and once today. Yesterday, I felt upset, because of what I was just now writing about art critics and art criticism; today I find some truth in it.
But, really, who says that what I do is good art or not? Me? Just because I spend hours drawing and painting, does that by default make my work good? Am I entitled to call myself an artist? I don't know, man.
I try to be faithful to myself and what I really want to do, I try my best so that when I'm done with a piece that I legitimately like it and I am sincerely happy with it. And that's about as much as I can do. That and generally keep my opinion to myself about the work of other people.
Or something like that.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Eyes and eyes

Usually, when I draw something, I will start with an eye. I don't know why this is and I don't question it. The few other times when I don't draw an eye, it's when I do the abstracts in which the exercise is to not draw anything.

Sometime last week, I think, I found some small canvases and I decided to put them to good use and make some very quick and simple eye paintings on the with acrylic paint. And I did one with black and another one in blue and black.
These are them:

And between yesterday and today, I produced these smaller two, in more color. It's also acrylic paint on canvas.
For these, I did not allow myself to use black, not even for the pupil, as I usually do and I had the objective of only using primary colors to work with, so all the colors you see there are mixed from blue, red and yellow. I did allow myself the use of white. I like the spattered and watery look of these two, how around the eyes it's sketchy and as it goes nearer the pupil, stuff is kind of more neat, with finer brushstrokes.
Specifically, the one with the red iris, because on that one I purposely left part of the canvas in white. I remember there's this artist, whose name I don't remember, I saw a painting of his, where the canvas is only half painted with some very rough brushstrokes where the canvas begins to get white and the portrait very neatly painted.

It was very very challenging and somewhat frustrating, but only because acrylic still dries out so fast for me.
I have to say though, I'm working much better with acrylic paint, I've found myself WANTING to use it and turning to it, when I want to paint something quickly.
So these little paintings, I think are something of a study, the first two a study of acrylic paint in general and the second two, a study of acrylic paint and color.
This is all for now, remember to like my Facebook page and share it with your friends: Gabriela Handal Arte
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