I'm Kenney Mencher. I'm an artist who left a tenured professorship in 2016 to pursue making art full time. This blog is about art, art history, with a emphasis on human rights. I make homoerotic art featuring bears, otters & other gay wildlife.
Thursday, January 19, 2017
Arc Studios News January 2017
Happy New Year! This month Arc Studio News features artist Dianne Hoffman who works out of studio #103. She has been an Arc artist since August, 2014.
Dianne Hoffman Profile
by Alexandra Brown
Although Dianne has been a native of California for her entire life, she is in love with the city of San Francisco, which serves as a constant source of inspiration for her. It was in this "enchanting City by the Bay, with its vibrant Victorians, street performers, foghorns, golden bridges, Indian summers, colorful diversity, literary ghosts and loving embrace of everything extraordinary," that Dianne found her home. "My misfitted self found its fit," she explains.
Dianne did not feel comfortable with the title of "artist" until she was close to 40 years old, even though she senses it was an identity that was likely decided at her birth. She has always had a pronounced creative streak and an artistic temperament that her own mother has described as, "marching to the beat of her own drum." After finishing high school, Dianne packed up her car and headed north towards the Bay from the suburbs of Southern California. "I didn't know what to expect, besides endless possibilities." However, it took Dianne almost 20 more years to gather all of her experiences, impressions, afflictions, affiliations, ideas and dreams, and to convert them into an art form.
"Thankfully, I eventually found the courage to own it and invest myself wholeheartedly in art as a career. It took realizing that life was short and I'd better step up and live it." So in 2007, feeling a desperate need to connect, Dianne picked up a glue stick and a stack of tattered magazines. Today Dianne identifies her medium as collage and assemblage. She has a tendency to personify inanimate objects, and to feel genuine compassion for those that are damaged or disregarded. "I see potential in broken bits and find beauty in rust and erosion. The older an object, the more haunting and alluring its ghost."
Dianne finds her artistic treasures at thrift shops, flea markets, garage sales, junkyards, attics and basements. Sometimes all she needs to do is look at an object for inspiration, but more often than not, she will contemplate her neatly organized piles of arbitrary things by repetitively placing random items together until something visually clicks in her mind. Most of Dianne's work is set in boxes, where she becomes the storyteller. "I create small worlds in a box where tall tales are told, jokes are cracked, emotions stirred, poems imparted and songs are sung. By using images and objects that evoke the past, my pieces become storytellers, dream interpreters and memory inducers. They are innately lyrical and flicker along to their own silent film."
Through this otherworldly iconography, Dianne is trying to convey equality, and she does this by delicately balancing light and dark elements. "Both are required to experience the other. I do not see one as positive or one as negative but rather that there is whimsy, sincerity and magnetism to be found in their unified stories." Anybody who has a healthy relationship with their imagination is Dianne's audience; she wants her viewers to raise an eyebrow and lean in for a closer look.
Dianne feels very fortunate to be a member of Arc Gallery, to have an affordable workspace within a well-maintained facility that presents itself with integrity and professionalism. "Both the studios and the gallery play a supportive and vital role to the San Francisco arts community at large."
Her many talented peers and contemporaries surrounding Dianne are one of her greatest sources of inspiration. Pioneer of the assemblage movement, Joseph Cornell, and stop-motion animators, the Quay Brothers also provide great inspiration to Dianne, but her favorite period of art is, "the one we are making!"
See Dianne's work below.
Hello/Good-bye Arc Artists
Arc Studios is sad to say goodbye to artist Samanta Tello in Studio 206. She is moving to a home studio and has promised to visit Arc often. We welcome Jennifer L. King, who moved into Studio 101 in December and will be sharing studio space with Soad Kader. We welcome Amy Ahlstrom and Joshua Coffey, who will be sharing Studio 206 in February.
Solo Show at Hotel Biron
Hotel Biron, 45 Rose Street, San Francisco. Exhibition runs from December 12, 2016 through February 14, 2017.
Group Show at City Art Gallery
828 Valencia Street, San Francisco. December 2, 2016 through January 31, 2017.
Thursday, January 19th, 2017 8-10pm | doors 7:30 $12 at Arc Gallery, 1246 Folsom Street
Kearny Street Workshop celebrates the book releases of Omnidawn Publishing's Jennifer S. Cheng and Robert Andrew Perez -AND- relaunches their Office Gallery with Francis Calimlim.
With Liberty and Justice for Some
Co-curated by Monica Lundy and Walter Maciel
Walter Maciel Gallery, 2642 S La Cienaga Blvd, Los Angeles, CA, January 7 - March 4, 2017
Work:Adel A. Kader (Pops)
Immigrated to the USA from Egypt
acrylic, ink, paper on canvas, 8x8"
10 Spot, SOHN FINE ART GALLERY, 69 Church Street, Lenox, MA, January 27 - March 20
10 Spot, Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Pittsfield, MA, February 03 - February 27
Animal House: The Exhibit, Sacramento Fine Arts Center, 5330B Gibbons Drive, Carmichael, CA, January 03-29
Bryn Mawr Art Ability, Main Line, PA, November 6, 2016 - January 29, 2017
Work Can Be Found At
City Art Gallery, 828 Valencia / Mission
Local Take, 17th Street, Castro / 9th Ave Inner Sunset Collage Gallery, 1345 18th St, Potrero Hill, San Francisco
SF Mercantile, 1698 Haight St, San Francisco, CA
Wonderland Gallery, 1266 Valencia St, / Mission San Francisco, CA Acci Gallery, 1652 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA