“When things go wrong, don’t go with them.” -Elvis Presley
No matter how hard you work and plan, sometimes life slips sideways. These are moments when we are tested in a way, put in a position that stretches the boundaries of our tolerance. Humans gravitate naturally toward comfort, and so these times can feel especially jarring. How we meet moments of struggle is perhaps a lifelong evolution. No one is expected to show up with perfect grace, and there is no particular valor in standing firm like an oak in a storm.
Peter Gallo joined us to talk, among other things, about his exhibition Blood & Flowers, which ran from June 1-25 at Sean Horton Gallery. The title itself was devised by Gallo and Sean Horton meant to capture the abundance of flowers in Gallo’s personal environment as well as the theme of blood that has been part of his work since the 1980s when he began creating pieces as a reaction to the AIDS epidemic. Gallo works out of his studio in northern Vermont near the Quebec border where an enormous flower garden sits in front of his house. He lives surrounded by old dairy farmland in a small village that serves as the hub for the county. He and his partner live in an old storefront. To hear more about Gallo’s life, his recent show and more, including how to show in the city while living outside of it, listen to the complete interview.
Tyler Brandon joined us to discuss his show, Fire Paintings, at Shelter, which ran through August 13. Brandon initially referred to the work in the show as “cave paintings” rather affectionately, and the imagery depicted derives largely from Egyptian hieroglyphics. After casually referring to his work as cave paintings, the name evolved into fire paintings. He admits this is a slight misnomer in that one of the paintings does not include fire. Basic Principle includes a geometric shape, and apple and a daisy. To hear more about the work and the artist, including which piece he considers the most personal, listen to the complete interview.
A Few Words to Keep in your Pocket
It’s OK to fall apart sometimes.
Interviews are available on iTunes as podcasts, and for Android please click here. All weekly essay pieces in a shareable format are here. The full archive of interviews is here.
Books to Read
What are you reading? Add your titles to our reading list here. Peter Gallo usually has many books going at once. One at the time we spoke was Gay Liberation After May ’68 by Guy Hocquenghem. Praxis user Phoenix Savage is reading Blood and Bronze: The British Empire and the Sack of Benin by Paddy Docherty.
Franconia Sculpture Park invites mid-career artists working in sculpture and installation to apply for their fellowship program, which includes a self-directed residency and $7500 stipend. For more information, visit the website. Deadline for applications is September 1.
Brainard Carey is an author, artist and educator. He is the director of Praxis for Aesthetics. He has written six books for artists, most recently Making it in the Art World.
Photo credit Sean Horton Gallery