Ransom & Mitchell’s “Smoke & Mirrors” at Varnish Fine Art

by Annie OwensPosted on

big ass carnivorous flower

“Smoke & Mirrors,” the debut solo show by art duo Jason Mitchell and Stacey Ransom, opened this past weekend to a seriously packed house at Varnish Fine Art gallery in San Francisco and it was great to see some familiar faces. Ransom & Mitchell are both life and business partners. “Their visually stunning works, informed by professional backgrounds in the filmmaking world, are the end result of creative collaborations with an intense study of the art world notables they photograph.”


“Smoke & Mirrors” includes an array of photo portrait tableaus of some of the art world’s notorious, arranged on the decaying victorian walls they customized themselves. The centerpiece of the installation was the enormous fanged monster rose mounted on the wall with trailing rootlike tentacles running the length of the gallery.

The delicate modeling of light and shadow in this series is evocative of the Dutch and Italian Renaissance painters. By way of fastidious collaboration between Mitchell, Ransom and their subjects, each portrait depicts sometimes bold, sometimes subtle but always distinct characteristics of each artist’s personality.

Scott Musgrove portrait

Go here to view the full show. For more on Jason and Stacey, visit their website. For behind the scenes coverage of some of the work, feel free to visit our previous posts here and here and check out Stacey’s blog Ransom Notes.

The show runs through October 27th.

monster flower
centerpiece Rose

Kerri Stephens, name coming & Ron Turner
Kerri Stephens, Kristen Sard & Ron Turner

Josh Ellingson, Attaboy & Emily Lakin
Josh Ellingson, Emily Lakin & Attaboy
Ron Turner of Last Gasp & artist Winston Smith
Ron Turner of Last Gasp and artist Winston Smith
writer, publisher V. Vale
V. Vale of Search & Destroy
Dave Correia, Alex Pardee & Chloe Rice
Dave Correia, Alex Pardee and Chloe Rice
Ron Turner & Stacey Ransom

watching a video install

Video installation on decaying “tiled” walls.

jason & stacey

The man and woman of the evening, Jason Mitchell & Stacey Ransom.

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