Archive for September, 2008

September Art Picks

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The new Verge Gallery kicked off with a bang this past 2nd Saturday with untold hundreds flowing through its doors by nights end. Work was sold, Mayor Fargo stopped by, rides were ridden, and all in all it was a perfect inaugural reception.

Sharie Lesniak of Born Free with Heather Fargo and a naked mole rat.

Fargo with the Derby Girls.

Ed from New Jersey!

The Verge’s littlest art patron.

If you haven’t been yet the space is frickin’ HUGE!!!! It will be exciting to see what the coming months bring to The Verge!

In addition to my duties at the Circus Show I was also volunteering at the opening reception for the Capital Area Studio Tour’s preview show at 1818 L street. The space was rough but in the end it turned out fabulous and like the Circus Show, boasted I don’t know how many hundreds of viewers by nights end.

After my shift at CAST I had to head back to the Verge but was in serious need of grub. My friend So and I looked around for choices – I had to park about 6 blocks away so driving somewhere seemed like a poor choice – but most every restaurant around was so pack that there were lines out the door and no where to sit.

Remembering ADK’s endorsement of the grub at Old Soul a few moments earlier we decided to head over there and were pleasantly rewarded. For a mere $14 bucks we got two delicious pulled pork sandwiches and two beers. There was plenty of room to take a load off and it was indeed the pause that refreshed.

Going to Sac State?

For anyone who might find themselves on the Sac State campus this week, you absolutely must stop by Kadema Hall and check out the two fabulous shows up there right now. Of pressing urgency is This Here Love Hey, It’s A-Gonna Last/The Backs of Photographs as it ends this Friday. Silly I know that a show would only be up for a week, and at that, only open from noon to 4pm but what are ya gonna do? The other show Traces: Contemporary Romanian Art is also really fabulous and will be open through Ocotber 3rd. These are two of the best shows I’ve seen on that campus and are absolutely worth the trip and the parking. Tomorrow evening three of the women featured in the Romanian show will be giving a discussion on their work at 7:30pm. I’ll break it all down for you below:

This Here Love Hey, It’s A-Gonna Last/The Backs of Photographs will be up through the end of the week from noon to 4pm each day.

Traces: Contemporary Romanian Art will be up through October 3rd with a panel discussion tomorrow evening with Ana Banica, Suzana Dan, and Carmen Iovitu at 7:30pm for details and location call 916.278.6166

ALSO SATURDAY NIGHT… Kent Lacin’s show Children of Wind will host it’s panel discussion also at Sac State in the University’s library gallery. Featured speakers include Darrell Steinberg and homeless teen John Doe amongst others. The reception for the event is this Friday, September 13th at 6pm.

For more info or any details I might have overlooked call 916.278.6166!!!!!

Another Corti’s post!

This isn’t going to turn into the all-corti’s-all-the-time blog, I promise, but I finally tried the Consorcio tuna there because it is currently on sale. Corti is the exclusive American source for this fine, fine tuna, and the can pictures costs $7.50. Yes, that is a lot for a can of tuna, but if you use it for a salad nicoise, which I recommend, it is the centerpiece of the meal and you probably wouldn’t balk at spending $7.50 on a chicken, right? This tuna is worth it! It is soft and pink and creamy and delicious.

Come together!

Yesterday’s press conference at Corti Borther’s was absolutely inspiring. Looking across the parking lot at a collection of local chefs, community leaders, and citizens who had all come together in the interest of preserving a Sacramento institution gave me renewed faith in our city.

In total it was estimated that about 30 area chefs showed up.

Former Democratic Assemblyman Rusty Areias facilitated the event.

Biba kicked off the tributes with a moving and concise speech suggesting that had Darrell not been here on her arrival to Sacramento she would have packed her bags and left.

Kurt Spataro blamed his radical hair style on a tousling from Biba upon his arrival.

At different times Corti’s obvious display of emotion brought a tear to many an eye during the course of the festivities.

According to Corti, Mai Pham introduced Sacramento to lemon grass.

Patrick Mulvaney – quite possibly Sacramento’s tallest chef – helped facilitate the rally which was initially intended to be a show of support, and in the end became a celebration!

!!!!Viva Corti’s Viva!!!

DEBAUCH-A-RENO this Weekend!

If you’re itching to get out of Sacramento this weekend, Slovenly Records/Sticker Guy is hosting another music fest this weekend in Reno, NV!

There is a free pre-party on Friday with the Rock n Roll Adventure Kids, but the main event is Saturday. Catch some great bands including Head (Seattle), Subsonics, Okmoniks, The Sess, the Humans and Sacto’s own Losin’ Streaks! There’s also a secret surprise band with many rumors floating around…

There are some great deals on tickets and hotel rooms. Get the full info here.

See you in Reno!

Chris Daubert

by Tim Foster

Chris Daubert is on a roll. The local artist and Sacramento City College professor has recently been profiled in both Sacramento and Sactown magazines and is about to open a highly anticipated solo show at the B. Sakata Garo gallery. What happened to make this low-key local artist the Sacramento equivalent of an art star?

The short answer is Travelers Among Buildings and Streams. The artist’s ambitious 2005 installation at the 1050 Loft wowed Sacramento’s art community and was perhaps the best-received local work of contemporary art since Thiebaud’s heyday. The Sacramento Bee’s Victoria Dalkey called the piece “one of the most arresting exhibitions I have seen and certainly the most amazing installation to be mounted in Sacramento.” Similar accolades followed, and suddenly it seemed that everyone was talking about Chris Daubert.

Daubert seems to take the flurry of attention in stride. Clearly his focus is on making work—Daubert’s practice fills three studios—rather than promoting his art career. This attitude is perhaps unsurprising for an artist who traded a high profile position in the chaotic Bay Area art scene for the bucolic confines of Dixon, and later Sacramento. As the founder and president of the Pro-Arts Gallery in Oakland, Daubert spent more time curating and networking than he did making his own work. Now, though he both teaches art at Sacramento City College and runs the Gregory Kondos Gallery on campus, Daubert finds time to make work. A lot of work.

His wide-ranging art practice covers everything from assured life drawing to electrical constructions to fluxus-like installations. There is no constant, other than quality.

Chris Daubert’ style; it’s his thinking—a kind of signature attitude—that makes everything cohere,” says Elaine O’Brien, professor of Art History at Sac State. “His range of high level skills is incredible.”

Despite his prodigious output, Daubert has rarely shown in Sacramento. This is due partly to his tendency toward as he says, “extraordinarily large installations,” and indeed, Travelers Among Buildings and Streams occupied a 25,000 square foot space. But, at least as big a factor is his disinterest in making art as a commodity. Daubert is a rarity among Sacramento artists: an unabashed conceptualist who often includes the viewer as an inherent component of a piece.

Travelers Among Buildings and Streams is the ne plus ultra of the ambitious large-scale installations to which the artist is drawn. Constructed of over 1000 hand-built light-up text boxes, each containing a single word in red, the installation consisted of seemingly endless lines of fragmentary text. Hung in a horizontal strip throughout a darkened building, the texts ran nearly a quarter of a mile in length. The piece took 2 years to construct and when installed covered an entire floor of a rehabbed office building.

The text pieces, all but one written by Daubert, formed fragmentary statements—simple ruminations on a theme of man’s relation to the eternal earth. Visitors to the installation seemed to disappear, folded into the darkness, then revealed again only as negatives against the red horizon. The otherworldly environment was transcendental, seemingly disembodying the viewer in an effect of near-astral projection. As unlikely as it seems, Daubert had created the ethereal in a rough construction site at the corner of 20th and K.

Light House, Daubert’s upcoming show at B.Sakata Garo will be the artist’s rare solo foray into a commercial gallery. Asked about the show, Daubert laughed. “Barry [Sakata] said, ‘do what ever you want … but it sure would be nice to sell something.’” When I spoke with him a few weeks ago, Daubert was not exactly sure what work would be in the show. “One of the things that I’ve learned as a curator is that editing out twenty to fifty percent makes a show stronger,” he says. The creation and editing process will continue until just before the show is installed.

Daubert’s latest work is no less ambitious than Travelers Among Buildings and Streams—it’s just smaller. At least the versions that viewers encounter.

For this current body of work, Daubert creates epic structures, painstakingly documents them, and then tears them apart. Then, again using electric light boxes, he creates structures that house beautifully rich images of the destroyed structures—which now exist only in the documentary form. Carefully eschewing any reference to scale, the images could be almost anything, seemingly anywhere. Touching on Mayan architecture, the mechanicals of advertising, and the eternal question of what is ‘real’, the work is arresting, seeming both familiar and foreign at the same time.

Daubert is excited to be in Sacramento these days. He sees a new groundswell of interest in the arts, and is excited about both his own work and his curatorial work at the Kondos.

When I asked what motivates him to make art, he revealed a simple recipe: “I try to make things that I would want to see.”

Light House by Chris Daubert runs September 4 through September 29 at B. Sakata Garo at 923 20th Street, Sacramento. More information at 916 447 4276 or at

Intelligence tonight at Luigi’s Fun Garden!!

The Intelligence are playing tonight with Standard Tribesmen and English Singles at Luigi’s Fun Garden. Show starts at 8pm! It is 18+ and only a few bucks.

Head out to this show if you can! I have a radio show to do and can’t make it, but I highly recommend this show! All these bands are stellar.