San Francisco based artist Ryan De La Hoz (previously covered here) recently opened his new solo show, “Impassible Terrain” at FFDG. Consisting of new mixed media works and illustration, De La Hoz’s new body of work seeks to highlight our collective experiences through antiquity and traditional iconography. Using historical references to execute this personal ideology, De La Hoz’s new show rests on impactful yet simple motifs to convey broad concepts.
Based in Mexico City, Curiot (featured in HF Vol. 29) creates phantasmagoric paintings where deity-like monsters traverse the clouds. The silhouettes of tiny people floating in their wake reveal that human beings look like mere playthings in comparison. Last weekend, Curiot debuted his latest solo show, “Down the Rabbit Hole with Neon Lights,” at San Francisco’s FFDG, as well as a downtown mural curated by Fifty24SF, another local gallery. According to FFDG, the new paintings in Curiot’s exhibition allude to the rapid pace of technology and the consequential environmental pollution. His creatures travel through a mysterious continuum to attempt to reach the “vortex of souls,” only to get sucked into the past where they must confront their previous wrongdoing.
With a new piece dated every few days between November 2014 and January 2015, Mike Giant’s latest series of drawings serves as a map of the current state of the artist’s life. Though Giant is originally from New Mexico, his name is synonymous with the San Francisco graffiti and tattoo scenes, where he developed himself as an artist in the 1990s and 2000s. With rapid gentrification squeezing out many of San Francisco’s creative enclaves, Giant relocated to Boulder, Colorado two years ago. His upcoming solo show, “Colorado,” opens at FFDG in San Francisco on February 13, meditates on various transitions in Giant’s life — his move halfway across the country, the end of a relationship, and various shifts in his lifestyle choices.
Jeremy Fish’s solo show “Yesterdays and Tomorrows” at San Francisco’s FFDG has a carefully planned installation. Black lines on the gallery’s left wall outline a cartoon thought bubble that houses almost 20 years worth of drawings; on the parallel wall of the narrow space, mural-scale paintings hang inside the hollow outlines of cartoon bunnies painted directly on the room’s surface. But at the opening night of “Yesterdays and Tomorrows,” it was difficult to even get close enough to see these meticulous details. A huge crowd had amassed to celebrate an informal retrospective of one of San Francisco’s most well-known artists from the past two decades.
This past weekend, Philadelphia-based artist Jim Houser opened his solo show at FFDG in San Francisco. Titled “Night Got Quiet, Not Quite Light.” The exhibition consists of Houser’s highly recognizable patchwork assemblages, as well as some minimalist mixed media works and site specific installations. Predominantly confined to his signature square format, this new show is a continuation of Houser’s exploration into the relationship between the visual and the aural. The interplay between text and imagery in Houser’s work makes way for an emotional narrative open to the interpretation of the viewer. Playfully rendered and meticulously composed, Houser acts as a visual storyteller, evoking an unencumbered youthful sentiment.
Jim Houser’s paintings for his upcoming show “Night Got Quiet — Not Quite Light,” opening July 11 at FFDG in San Francisco, illustrate small, personal vignettes. The Philadelphia-based artist’s works combine a multitude of influences that give them a folkloric, antiquated feel. The text Houser frequently uses recalls the hand-painted signs of past decades; his patchwork-like compositions layer colors like the different fabrics in a quilt. It’s as if his work yearns for the hand-made softness and imperfection that has largely been lost in a world of ultra-modern, computerized design.