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Success in New York Armory week..San Francisco Next!

After a strong show in Scope New York, Art Unified is heading to Art Market San Francisco April 27-30th! We are excited to show art work by five of LA's leading contemporary artists.

Johan Andersson

Sarah Bahbah

Joseph Lee

Ewan Eason

Adam Greener

We are looking forward to seeing you there!

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Art Unified takes LA art show by storm

Art Unified booth swarmed by crowds at LA Art Show

Art Unified took LA Art show by storm with strong sales by Sarah BahbahJoseph Lee,Ewan David Eason Mappa Mundi series, and laughter and engagement with Adam Greener's written blown up middle school artworks. The Art Unified booth was simply engaging, relatable and all round a favourite by onlookers with clearly the most foot traffic in a booth.

Art Unified's planned art fair programme the next few months include Scope New York at the Metropolitan Pavilion, Art market San Francisco, Art Vancouver and Start Saatchi Gallery London during Frieze in September.

SCOPE New York
March 2-5, 2017
Metropolitan Pavillon
125 W18th Street
New York, NY 10011


ART! Vancouver
May 25-28, 2017
Vancouver Convention Centre East
999 Canada Place
Vancouver, BC V6C 3C1
 

Saatchi Gallery START
September 14-17, 2017
Saatchi Gallery
Duke of York's HQ
King's Road
London  SW3 4RY

Giclee Prints:

Johan Andersson Last Supper was on display at the LA Art show. The painting is available as a framed Giclee print
Head over to his Artist page to check out more of his work.

Adam Greener has been drawing crowds with his nostalgic middle school blown up written artworks. You can view his whole collection here

Art Unified_Sarah Bahbah_SexandTakeout_2016:2.jpg

Sarah Bahbah is the newest addition to the Art Unified roster and we are proud to exhibit her 'Accept it', 'Sex and Takeout' and 'Summer without a pool' series. Head over to her Artist page to check out more of her work.

 

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Art Unified Apparel

We are now taking orders on our new Apparel line at Art Unified. You can view all our t-shirts here 
 

Rafael Gonzales melts kids toys on wood panel. This artwork has been shipped from Argentina. See his whole collection here

 

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Miami Basel 2016

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Miami Basel 2016

2016 may be coming to a close, but the 2017 art fair season is just kicking off! The Art Unified team is finally back in Los Angeles after a few weeks in Miami for SCOPE Miami Beach 2016. This year's show marked the 16th anniversary for the now-iconic art fair. 

We were among over 120 exhibitors with fair attendance reaching new heights of 50,000 attendees walking through SCOPE's signature white tent.

With Sarah Bahbah's 'Accept It' and 'Sex and Takeout' series selling out, Ewan Eason Mappa Mundi Maps doing extremely well and Johan Andersson's 'Toy Gun' series being exceptionally well received, we can easily say this was the greatest way to end 2016! 

If you want to keep up-to-date with the fairs and events that we attend in 2017, make sure to follow Art Unified on Instagram.

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SEGMENT FROM 'THE SPIRITUAL IN OUR TIME & THE RUSKIN LECTURE' /NOVEMBER 3, 2016 BY LAURENCE FULLER

The Rapture by Johan Andersson

The Rapture by Johan Andersson

As we stand on the dawn of a new epoch in human history complete and divided, the debates of the 20th Century still rage on. Hillary Clinton with many years of experience navigating the corridors of power in the name of both America and personal gain, a pristine icon of the extreme centre. Donald Trump navigating his own corridors in the name of Trump. One of these people will be the leader of the New World and take office at the White House in January. My question is not just who will it be and why, but where do we find ourselves located in the constellation of ideologies? Have we plateaued the potential for popular culture to extend beyond a greater refinement of formula, and are merely emulating the successes of our ancestors, if the movie studios are anything to go by with their endless reboots this could well be the case? Or is the eclecticism of post-modernism such an unstoppable monster with the advent of the internet, that we find ourselves in the cultural swamp of randomness? Does any of it matter to the individual who seeks to speak with feeling through the language of art to the best version of himself to another?

It seems we are faced with increasing divisions in the West, that in one sense allow for greater individuality then ever before and yet what we give up is any sense of unity. In researching a film about my father this last two years, I looked back at the revolutionary 60s and how far away from that united utopia they envisioned we now find ourselves. It could be said that this idea of connectedness is just an illusion and what politicians are all fighting for is a feeling that rests beneath all their rhetoric. What we all really want to end the impenetrable loneliness that we are born with, this strange feeling that others walk with us yet are never there, that is fleetingly resolved in moments of realizing our own fragility in the face of another and being met with a smile and hand on ones shoulder. Or to stand with courage in service of something larger than ourselves that we can with confidence give over to. Or as a creator, bare the weight of humanities loneliness for that period of creation to reveal our gift at the end of it all and speak with something greater than language could ever hope to compensate for.

In The Name Of God, Johan Andersson "True religion is not a narrow dogma. It is not external observance. It is faith in God and living in the presence of God. It means faith in a future life, in truth and Ahimsa. Religion is a matter of the heart. No physical inconvenience can warrant abandonment of one's own religion" - Ghandi

In The Name Of God, Johan Andersson

"True religion is not a narrow dogma. It is not external observance. It is faith in God and living in the presence of God. It means faith in a future life, in truth and Ahimsa. Religion is a matter of the heart. No physical inconvenience can warrant abandonment of one's own religion" - Ghandi

In The Name Of God, a figure sits in the middle of disparate factions laying in the carnage that their ideological positions had lead them, in front of a presence of something other that they at first wished to seek; the unifying figure of Ghandi. A man who once brought together a divided India, split into argument and conflicting positions on the matters of not just material, but humanity and the spirit, he railed against the institution and demanded that we seek a deeper substance to the rhetoric. As a young man he was inspired by the essay by John Ruskin and wrote a paraphrase to Ruskin's essay Unto This Last, with the introduction 'This exclusive search for physical and economic well-being prosecuted in disregard of morality is contrary to the divine law, as some wise men in the West have shown. One of these was John Ruskin who contends in Unto This Last that men can be happy only if they obey this moral law' - Ghandi

From the 'Dirty Series' by Johan Andersson

From the 'Dirty Series' by Johan Andersson

I first saw Johan Anderson's work in 2007 after recently having graduated in Classical Theatre from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. I was being guided by a conceptual artist, as she took me through the halls of Central Saint Martin's School of Art, I believe the project she was working on at the time was letting balloons go on the rooftop of the college and filming it. There was another melting candle wax into a wooden box, one of the students mumbled something about Ways Of Seeing. Much of the art she was showing me didn't exist. I wandered through the halls mostly uninterested. Until something happened, I encountered Johan Andersson painting "Randy", as I stopped staring into the portrait flashes of old master painters came flooding into my consciousness, from Rembrandt to Freud to Peter Howson. I was overcome by the humanity emanating from the canvas, more human than human, the presence of sentience. 

Gentile Embrace, Johan Andersson

Gentile Embrace, Johan Andersson

detailed the experience in Art Influence which was run at the time by the Peter Fuller Memorial Foundation now represented in this blog, it  was my first published essay on art. I only corresponded with Johan via email and very briefly during that time. Subsequently our journeys diverged as I went into British theatre and independent films. I remember getting on the tube to rehearsals for my first West End show at Trafalgar Studios Madness In Valencia,script in hand as I stepped up to the platform and looked across the tracks it was unmistakably the same hand of Johan Andersson's striking me again with that same  distinct feeling.

Crossing the pond to Los Angeles without knowing he was out here I encountered Johan again at the Los Angeles Art Fair, as a line of people sued up around the block to experience The Last Supper:

The Last Supper, Johan Andersson

The Last Supper, Johan Andersson

This is Johan's latest series of paintings on gun violence, compassionate and subversive

 

 

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POST MORTEM: SCOPE MIAMI BEACH 2015

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POST MORTEM: SCOPE MIAMI BEACH 2015

2015 may be coming to a close, but the 2016 art fair season is just kicking off! The Art Unified team is finally back in Los Angeles after a few weeks in Miami for SCOPE Miami Beach 2015. This year's show marked the 15th anniversary for the now-iconic art fair. 

We were among over 120 exhibitors, which included Thinkspace Gallery, Joseph Gross Gallery, and the newly-opened Rumney Guggenheim. Despite inclement weather, fair attendance reached new heights with 49,000 attendees (compared to 45,000 from last year) walking through SCOPE's signature white tent.

If you want to keep up-to-date with the fairs and events that we attend in 2016, make sure to follow Art Unified on Instagram.

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ANNOUNCING THE RELEASE OF THE ART UNIFIED APPAREL LINE

 

After 6 months of hard work and 50 sample shirts from 3 different printers (all of which will be donated to charity), we're excited to announce the first capsule collection from the Art Unified fine art apparel line. 

The first three shirts are based on artwork from Art Unified artists Johan Andersson and Ewan David Eason. You can select between Child Soldier, by Johan Andersson; Heroin Addict, by Johan Andersson, and Mappa Mundi Los Angeles, by Ewan David Eason.

Each shirt is a comfortable and lightweight unisex fine art t-shirt, 100% polyester construction and made from start-to-finish in Los Angeles. While our shirts are sized as unisex, women may prefer to order one size smaller.

We are now accepting pre-orders. Shirts will begin shipping January 1, 2016. 

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ART UNIFIED x CHEF VINCE HOWARD PRESENT: LIVE ART SUPPER CLUB

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ART UNIFIED x CHEF VINCE HOWARD PRESENT: LIVE ART SUPPER CLUB

 

The Live Art Supper Club runs every 2 months, please click link below for more information! 

We're excited to release the menu for our first Live Art Supper club, taking place on Saturday, November 7.

The Live Art Supper Club is a collaboration between Art Unified and Los Angeles-based chef Vince Howard. Guests will be served a five-course meal (alcohol included) while enjoying live painting from renowned street artist, MONCHO1929. Alcohol will be provided by Live Art Supper Club partner Wurstküche. Bodega Wine Bar will be hosting a gift card raffle at the end of the night.

Tickets are $90 per seat (plus tax and fees). The Live Art Supper Club will be held at Venice Pop Up Park on the hip Abbott Kinney Boulevard. Only 50 seats are available, so make sure to get yours before we fill up.

You can learn more about the event and buy tickets at our Event Page. Can't wait to meet you all at our first supper!


Event details:

Art Unified x Chef Vince Howard present:

Live Art Supper Club
Saturday, November 7, 2015

Venice Pop Up Park
1023 Abbot Kinney Blvd
Venice CA 90291

$90 (+tax and fees) per head
Alcohol included
50 seats available
Purchase tickets here


Live Art Supper Club_Art Unified_Menu

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INSIDE THE ARTIST'S STUDIO: ASHLEIGH SUMNER

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INSIDE THE ARTIST'S STUDIO: ASHLEIGH SUMNER

 

It's been a while since we've been Inside the Artist's Studio, and we figured there was nobody better to help us break the radio silence than Art Unified artist Ashleigh Sumner. Her vibrant style is impossible to speak over in all its defiant and unapologetic glory. Sumner's mixed-media work employs the use of spray paint, resin and pop culture imagery, simultaneously evoking a sense of both longing nostalgia and a fresh beginning. Her vibrant reinterpretation of these iconic images lends to viewers a sense of epiphany, like the restoration of an old fable, whose gritty truths have resurfaced in time for another round of storytelling. Read on to see what this Arts District painter and creative entrepreneur had to say about recycling Marilyn Monroe, why she loves Patti Smith, and her recent work with the ESPYs.

 

"Do what inspires you, for no result at all. Forget the result. That’s what I would say to you. Forget the result and just create."

 

Art Unified: Let’s start off with you telling me about your background - where you grew up, what you studied…

Ashleigh Sumner: I’m originally from North Carolina, and I moved out West about 10 years ago. My background is in theater arts, and that’s what I studied back South. That’s what I moved out here for. I’ve always painted since I was a kid. I took some art classes in college, and my art teacher begged me to study art in college. But, you know, coming from the South, it wasn’t like New York where you see museums, galleries, artists and the career of an artist. I didn’t really know any painters growing up. I loved theater, and I could turn on the TV and see plenty of actors and what they were doing. I could comprehend that. But actually making a living from art wasn’t in my consciousness at al.

So I moved out here, and started working as an assistant director for a television and theater director, Peter H. Huntz. I learned a tremendous amount, acted for a long time until recently. I did a lot of shows, recurred on a show on NBC. The last thing I did was a guest star on Orange Is the New Black. I’ve done a lot of queer film, with a lot of success there.

It wasn’t until the actor’s strike - where there was no work and no auditioning, the industry just shut down - that I started to pick up my brushes. I started to put out what I was working on through Facebook. I posted my first painting and it sold. That was the beginning. From there, I guess that was five years ago now, it has snowballed. I started to work with galleries, I started to work more, I started to work with commissions. Pretty soon, I was able to quit my job with the director. So that’s my background.

 

AU: When you first came to Los Angeles, you mentioned that you didn’t have creative culture around you in the South. Did you find it easy to launch yourself into it once you arrived in Los Angeles? 

AS: I love theater arts, so I always had that outlet. I started to really get drawn back into painting because, as an actor, that’s a collaborative art. You have very little control. I could want to play Juliet (I don’t really) and I’ve got to wait for somebody to cast me in it, there’s got to be production, you’ll be waiting on XYZ. I can go paint whatever I want, whenever I want, however I want it. No one can edit it, no one can change it. It’s mine. I will always have that catharsis, which doesn’t happen all the time as an actor. Now, whether or not it sells, that’s a whole other thing. But who the fuck cares? At least I got to create it.

I started to get drawn to that because of the acting in LA. It helped balance that. And then I discovered downtown before it really blew up. And I loved it. I love the industrial wilderness of it. I love that there is an energy that was very authentic. When you drive through Skid Row on a daily basis, a lot of bullshit that we all get tied into, melts away. My work really started to shift and change because of this area, the street art, the distressed, gritty beauty of it all. It was a direct correlation with what I do. The more fucked up and gritty it is, the more I love it.


 

AU: Can you describe your style evolution? What did you originally start out painting and how does it compare with what you’re doing now?

AS: Oh, it’s very different. It was all abstract. Still on wood and bamboo, but it was purely color. There was no photo imagery. And I painted with knives. It was all scraping. No spray paint. Eventually, something shifted. You start to see other artists, something clicks in your brain, and I started to move to imagery. And it worked perfectly with the resin. Elements started to bleed through the work, which created this whole other level of mixed media. It’s about to evolve again. I want to start bringing in more of an abstract feel, but bringing in screen printing. That’s the plan. Let’s see if I can execute it. 

 

"I discovered downtown and I loved it. I love the industrial wilderness of it. I love that there is an energy that was very authentic. When you drive through Skid Row on a daily basis, a lot of bullshit that we all get tied into, melts away."

 


AU: In your artwork, you’re really drawn to figures of Americana and American pop culture figures. What draws you to that sort of imagery?

AS: I think… I don’t know. Sometimes, I think it has to do with what, politically, behind that imagery. I like taking those images and giving them a twist to make commentary on a modern day issue. I’ve been using Marilyn Monroe a lot lately, with money over her mouth. She’s such an iconic symbol of beauty, who has been reproduced and reproduced in art, mostly by men. As a woman, when I see Marilyn Monroe, she’s beautiful but in a way that beauty ultimately killed her. There’s a price that women pay in beauty and our Hollywood image of beauty. There’s a cost to all of that. So there’s that symbol of it that I like to use and then twist it, as a woman. I think it’s different from when men are reproducing images of Marilyn Monroe. It can kind of be one-dimensional in that, here’s this beautiful woman. There’s so much more there. 

 

AU: When you first started out, you said that your first painting sold immediately. Was that in a physical space or in a digital space?

AS: It sold on Facebook. And this was when Facebook first started. Your grandmother wasn’t on it yet. It had just started and it sold. 

 

AU: So how have you found the aspect of social media in developing your artist career? 

AS: Social media has helped. You have your artist website, and the social media part of that really opens the world up to the process and how you think, through articles that you post or the process that you’re going through. I think that some artists use it to promote themselves in a whole other way… selfies and things, I’m not big on that. To each their own, God bless. But I think it lends itself to letting people know the artist as a person. 

 

"It’s studio time, working your ass off, growing and flopping and flying. Working your way through. It’s a fight. Until you get to your breakthrough… I think that’s the bottom line. It starts in the studio."

 

AU: Do you think that has played a lot more into the art-buying process?

AS: Yes. We’re all buyers of some sort. We all are drawn to musicians, actors, whoever because we’re also thinking of who they are as people. You know, I think of Patti Smith - I love her music. But I also love how she thinks, what she has to say. I love knowing what she’s interested in. So I think when you can build that love - because your artwork, when you think about it, is going to be something that somebody is going to see every single day - so if they have a positive relationship with you or a positive idea of who you are, that makes it even better. Some people love Warhol because of who he was, or Basquiat, or Barbara Kruger because of her political stance. It adds to that. 

 

How do you reconcile this personality building in social media with on-the-ground connections?

AS: I think that social media can form a trap for artists versus on the ground. For artists, authenticity is very important. On the ground people will always respond to authenticity in art. The trap with social media or marketing is that you can start to try to market this idea that you would like people to think of your persona. It might work for some artists. But don’t move away from the authentic.

Yes, [social media] is important. But at the end of the day, if you can’t act then you can’t act. It doesn’t matter how many parties you go to. At the end of the day, it’s about your work. Hopefully it’s good and it sells. I don’t think [social media] is going to make your career. I think it’s studio time, working your ass off, growing and flopping and flying. Working your way through. It’s a fight. Until you get to your breakthrough… I think that’s the bottom line. It starts in the studio. You can post as much as you want. But if you’re not connecting with your work, then people won’t connect with you.

 

AU: Your work was recently on display at the ESPYs. How did that all unfold?

AS: I got lucky. You want to talk about authentic relationships? Everything is about relationships. I did a fundraiser for the Human Rights Campaign and donated a piece. The person who acquired that piece manages the Nokia Live - now the Microsoft - theater. He said, ‘I love your work, and we want to add artwork to the VIP lounge. Can you bring over some artwork?’ Since it’s a major music venue, I did a lot of musicians. Then the ESPYs came around, and he asked me to do a piece for the athlete’s lounge. That’s how I was approached about it. Then, it was like, what do I make? I finally settled on Jordan. Just a standard of excellence.

 

"It’s a marathon, not a sprint."

 

AU: What would you say to a young creative living in this city or cities like this, who are overwhelmed by the competitor pool? 

AS: Picasso did everybody a disservice when he said, ‘Great artists steal’. Because then you’re chasing something. You can be inspired. At the end of the day, though, don’t compare yourself. That’s the train straight to cuckooville. Find your voice. That’s just done through work, life, evolution. Do what inspires you, for no result at all. Forget the result. That’s what I would say to you. Forget the result and just create.

 

AU: You mentioned that you have a clothing line. Can you talk a little bit about that?

AS: Yes! I have a clothing line with two other creative partners, and it’s sort of come out of the art. We got it up and running, and then my art career started to get super busy. We’ve come back to it, and we're bringing more items to the table. It’s another form of expression and creativity. Have I ever sewn a day in my life? No. But I work with someone who has. Mark E. Walker, a dear friend and Arts District guy, who has had a few other lines and other entrepreneur experiences as well. My other partner is Gia Esquival,  who is now in San Francisco, is a brilliant marketer and graphic designer. She branded Gucci’s online presence, she did British Airways when they first started online. She’s great. It’s another outlet. It’s women’s streetwear and it’s called FIERS. We do everything here in L.A., we make our own patterns, pick out our own fabric down here. We’re gender neutral in a lot of ways, and we just want to empower women. We align ourselves with non-profits and organizations that share that wonderful feminist mindset. 

 

AU: Is this tied to your ‘Love Was Here’ project?

AS: Yes. ‘Love Was Here’ is from this organization called ‘Break the Silence’ which is a great organization that talks about breaking the homophobic silence that exists in sports. This is a special campaign that’s also tied with the WNBA and members of the Women’s World Cup soccer tournament. They’re going to be launching this in the next coming weeks. We made the shirts for them, and we made the design and the tag. These were being sold at the World Cup and will be sold at the upcoming WBNA All Star Game.* 

 

AU: We talked about a lot of your projects. What is juggling that creative workload like? Do you just never sleep?

AS: You do get up early. Some days you commit just to this and just to that. It’s a challenge. But you know, I think, it’s similar to being a musician. If you can read music, then you can play the trumpet, you can play the guitar. I think creatives sometimes do all of that. Yeah, dude, I’m not going to lie… it’s something. 

 

"Picasso did everybody a disservice when he said, ‘Great artists steal’. Because then you’re chasing something."

 

AU: Do you ever the feel to step away from your work and replenish your creative well?

AS: With painting, yeah, I think you have to step away and fill back up. It’s exhausting. Otherwise you’re just creating shit. Shit that looks tired. And then you’re just wasting supplies. 

 

AU: How do you step away?

AS: That’s usually when I start going to museums or read or watch films. I try to get inspired. Inspiration comes and goes. It can be elusive. The older you get, you realize when it’s there and when it’s not and how to go fill back up. It’s a strategy in and of itself. 

 

AU: What is the favorite piece you’ve ever received about being an artist or a creative?

It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

 

*To learn more about the 'Love Was Here' project, visit the FIERS website.

 

Learn more about Ashleigh Sumner and purchase her original artwork at her Artist page. Head over to the Print Store to buy a giclée print by Sumner.

To read other installments of Inside the Artist's Studio, check out our conversations with Paige Smith, Joseph LeeDaniel JohnsonEric Ernest JohnsonDan MonteavaroSusan HaynsworthJon Measures and Johan Andersson.

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POST MORTEM: SCOPE BASEL 2015

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POST MORTEM: SCOPE BASEL 2015

 

We just got back from exhibiting at SCOPE Basel in Basel, Switzerland. The show was hosted in the city's New Arts District on the Rhine, and 2015 was the show's 9th edition.

We were among over 100 exhibitors, including Peres Projects, Bischoff/Weiss, INVISIBLE-EXPORTS, Triumph Gallery and Dean Borghi Fine Art. Below are some shots of a few of the many inspired pieces of artwork on exhibit at Basel. If you'd like to see more behind-the-scenes shots of our time in Basel, make sure to follow Art Unified on Instagram.

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