Thursday, February 15, 2007

PUFF DETROIT

Mark your calendars for this:
Puff Paint Retrospective to be Shown in Detroit
Motor City Brewing Works (MCBW) will present an important exhibition by the seminal founders of the Puff Paint movement on Saturday, February 17th, from 7PM to 12 AM. Masters of the Puff Paint Movement (PPM) Sarah Blakeman, Davin Brainard and Jamie Easter will each present multiple works outlining the development of the Puff Paint movement from it’s origins in 1999 to it’s present day interpretation.

4 Comments:

Blogger Nolan said...

Sara B

such a hottie

Wish I could b e there.

9:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'Puff Paint Retrospective'

'an important exhibition'

'seminal founders'

'Masters of the... Movement

'outlining the development of the...movement from it’s (sic) origins in 1999 to it’s (sic) present day interpretation...

Okay - I'll admit I don't know much about this. But please, someone, TELL me that this is all tongue-in-cheek and oh-so-ironic...

10:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

its supposed to be funny. to get a real idea of this shows purpose, check out the press release, its hillarious!!!!!!!

(sorry, not sure where the heck the press release is, but if you can get it somehow, its worth the hunt).

12:38 AM  
Anonymous federline said...

PUFF DETROIT: Puff Paint Retrospective to be Shown in Detroit

Motor City Brewing Works (MCBW) will present an important exhibition by the seminal founders of the Puff Paint movement on Saturday, February 17th, from 7PM to 12 AM. Masters of the Puff Paint Movement (PPM) Sarah Blakeman, Davin Brainard and Jamie Easter will each present multiple works outlining the development of the Puff Paint movement from it’s origins in 1999 to it’s present day interpretation.

“We are especially proud and excited to be presenting the first important retrospective of the Puff Paint Movement in the world. For the first time, art enthusiasts will be able to see the Puff Paint Movement in it’s entirety, from conception to what is going on today in the world of Puff Painting.” Says Detroit art critic Dr. Addison DeWitt, curator of the exhibition. "This is a real coup for the contemporary Detroit gallery scene."

While early Puff Paint works were self-referential and surface oriented, the later works show a stronger intellectual bent, encompassing controversial topics and events, like 9/11, eating disorders and the war in Iraq. "We wanted to voice our discontent with the war and what better way to do that than in Puff Paint?" asks Co-Founder Davin Brainard. "The earlier work is lovely in its simplicity," "agrees Co-Founder Sarah Blakeman "but we wanted to take things a little farther." "The paintings and sculptural elements really participate in a conversation between object and material in a way that they didn't when we started out." avers Co-Founder Jamie Easter. "There is a subtext now that was lacking before," says Blakeman.

Although the origins of the Puff Paint Movement may appear murky, it is clear that the idea of Puff Painting grew organically from the collaboration of Blakeman, Brainard and Easter, in the summer of 1997. “A desire to use common materials in an uncommon way was the initial impetus,” says Brainard. “At the time we had all been in agreement that contemporary painting lacked a certain depth.” “It was flat.” agreed Jamie Easter, the ‘Pollock of Puff’ as he is known in art circles.

The three are modest and deferential, even while they speak ironically of a 'battle' of the Puff Paint School amongst themselves. "There is a rivalry, but it is a friendly rivalry" comments Easter "We really don't try and compare ourselves to anyone". I wouldn’t put us on par with Picasso or Rembrandt” says Blakeman, “but I wouldn’t turn down a comparison to, say, Oldenburg.” “Or Koons” interjects Brainard. “Or Pollock” chimes in Easter. “Pollock may have invented drip painting, but it wasn’t puffy drip painting." asserts Easter. “It was just a little bumpy” agree Brainard “and lacked the depth and skill that Jamie brings to his work.” “I think Pollock would be envious of Jamie’s skill with Puff” chimes in Blakeman, no amateur when it comes to wielding the puff paint nozzle.

The artists are as different as they are identical. Blakeman’s lush three-dimensional puff paint 'sculptures' call to mind Claes Oldenburg’s works, but are better, while Easter's "Drip Puff" paintings morph the surface of the ground into a swollen carnival of riotous color. Brainard's work takes a more concrete theoretical approach. Known internationally for his cloud paintings, Brainard's puff painting clouds have a tumescent subtext that is deliberately lacking in his straightforward "flat" cloud paintings. "Clouds in nature are puffy" opines Brainard "and so are my puffy cloud paintings. The technique and materials echo the proportions of the object." "Yes" says Blakeman.

If there is any doubt that the Puff Paint Movement is gaining recognition, one only need turn to art critic Bobo Huge who commented in a 2004 interview with 'Interview' magazine "(that) there is really nothing notable or new happening on the art scene today with the exception of the Detroit-centric Puff Paint Movement. The PPM's use of innovative, swollen materials and their refusal to give into two-dimensional surface play is quite ingenious. In the next few years I expect their currently underappreciated techniques will gain momentum and lead to a continued art revolution in the Midwest. I like them a lot."

A sense of place and an appreciation of their origins are at the heart of the Puff Paint Movement and the artists who began the trend. “Detroit is and was an important center of innovation in so many areas. Most people know Detroit as the Motor City or as the center of techno music. We would like to induct the Puff Paint Movement into the pantheon of Detroit innovations, so that people will not only think “Detroit” when they think of cars or music, but when they see a Puff Paint piece.” laughs Brainard. "I agree" smiles Blakeman.

-Virginie Amelie Gautreau, 2007

6:10 PM  

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