By Morgan M. Hurley | Editor
ArtZine is a new column that will share the work, places and lives of the artists within the local arts community of San Diego. I will try to make it as all-inclusive and feature not only artists of all mediums but also galleries, art spaces, art classes and at times include photography, music, theater or even architecture.
Alternative topics may include murals, tagging, outdoor art, interviews, etc. It may not run every issue but it is my wish to bring more attention to our local arts community, with a focus on LGBT artists of all kinds.
I hope to add a calendar of art events in the future and we may have guest contributors on occasion, too. If you are interested in participating, email me at email@example.com.
Alejandro Rojas comes out
Local art dealer Alexander Salazar, who opened his first gallery “Alexander Salazar Fine Art” in 2010 on Broadway, Downtown, is still successfully supporting artists at his current digs, located at 225 W. Market St., where he moved a year ago.
Salazar was recently inspired to go back to his artistic roots and let the artist within come out of the closet.
“After 10 years, I have returned to painting, rejoining my mission of combining art and philanthropy,” he stated in an email.
With two masters degrees in art (Harvard, Boston College), Salazar’s new venture uses his birth name, Alejandro Rojas Salazar, and a method he calls “swirling and pouring.” He has used the hashtag #pourart on social media when he shares the work. With this method, he literally pours paint on to the canvas, then either leaves it as is, lets it wander by moving the canvas around, or uses his hands to shape the image.
His recent foray has been quite popular among his Facebook followers and has not only consummated in pop-up exhibitions and sales, but also helped him rejuvenate his philanthropic efforts.
“If you have a need and the art is going to a good cause, I’ll give you a painting,” he said.
On June 24, Salazar will be staying true to his word — and then some — when he donates 30 pieces of his pour art specifically painted for the San Ysidro Health Center’s “Black, White & Bling Bash” fundraiser gala at the Hotel del Coronado from 5–11 p.m.
In keeping with the gala’s theme, Salazar painted the entire collection using black and white paint. Most of the series, called “Black and White Pour Series on Canvas,” are of the same size, while six are giant pieces.
Interested art lovers can see a preview of the work May 13 at the Hard Rock Hotel’s 207 Bar and Nightclub in the Gaslamp Quarter.
In addition to his gallery, Salazar has at least six other locations where he has semi-permanent exhibitions or pop-up installations in place, most of them located Downtown. They include some of his own work at Luxe Lounge & Spa on Market Street; a new large original piece at Andaz Hotel, which was commissioned during their recent renovation; 15 pieces of his own work at FIT Athletic on 10th Avenue, with more of his original work on display at FIT’s Carmel Mountain (12171 World Trade Drive) and Solana Beach (511 Highway 101) gyms as well.
In Hillcrest, he even has some of his personal work at the Hillcrest Newsstand space on University Avenue between Fifth and Sixth avenues. The Newsstand’s proprietor decided to clear a section of one magazine wall and create a pop-up art display. Salazar was happy to oblige him.
A large exhibition of works from one of his most successful and long-term clients, Walter Redondo, is currently on display at the San Diego Marriott Marquis and Marina, located on Harbor Drive next to the Convention Center.
Ten pieces of Redondo’s giant canvases are on display at the premier hotel, hoisted from the ceiling by a unique wiring hanging system. The works can be found in a long passage that doubles as a reflective lounge area, located between the North and South Towers and just outside all of the hotels three large ballrooms.
“This is the most professional partnership I’ve ever had putting on an art exhibition,” Salazar said, referring to the relationship with Marriott Marquis.
He said no expense was spared by the hotel when it came to ensuring the exhibition was the best it could be. Art work on display at hotels are generally done so in an anonymous fashion; here, each piece is identified and priced on a script located on the wall beside it, and an extensive bio of the artist has been inscribed on a wall/pillar at each end of the passage. It is truly a pop-up art gallery. In six months Salazar will swap out the series for another.
For more information about any of Salazar’s exhibitions or the art preview at the Hard Rock for the works he is donating to the Black, White and Bling Bash, reach him at alexandersalazarfineart.com.
Patric Stillman opens more doors
Patric Stillman, who runs a very successful gallery and artist’s space in North Park called The Studio Door — located on 30th Street at the corner of Gunn — has lots of artsy things of interest coming up.
In addition to the ongoing exhibition in his main gallery called “Through the Eyes of the Artist 2” that focuses on professional artists in California and Baja, Stillman recently expanded into an adjoining storefront on 30th Street and has named it The Hype. The Hype, based on a co-op model, is a way for Stillman to mentor and showcase other burgeoning artists. Each month, nine local artists present their work in the space and engage in the commerce side of art, many for the first time. Each artist also engages in gallery duties and weekend tours.
“As a North Park resident, business owner and North Park Main Street board member, I’m happy to be bringing more art into our community,” Stillman said.
In addition, Stillman is coming up on the final week of a “national call for artists” for his upcoming LGBT-themed exhibition called “PROUD,” which will be on display from June 2–25 in his main gallery.
Stillman is calling his production, which will honor the Stonewall Riots and National Pride Month, a “positive visual arts exhibition that reminds the community of their inner strength and resilience.”
As a national show, PROUD will be juried by Alex Fialho, visual AIDS program director and lower Manhattan cultural council research and curatorial associate. Founded in 1988, Visual AIDS Arts connects HIV/AIDS awareness with the visual arts.
If you are interested in learning more or wish to join the exhibit, visit tinyurl.com/lll26ss.
—Reach Morgan M. Hurley at firstname.lastname@example.org.