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The Philadelphia Art & Urban Literary Review

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Published by sheenagarcia68, 2017-07-07 15:18:52

The PAUL Review / 3

The Philadelphia Art & Urban Literary Review




JESSICA GAMBLE WILL KURTZ Cover Art by Santiago Galeas

Sheena Garcia, Multidisciplinary Artist
Paul Magazine Founder, Design Editor

Welcome to the Philadelphia Art & Urban Literary Review an Arts and literary
magazine founded and curated by artist Sheena Garcia. PAUL Review was
created out of Ms. Garcia's strong commitment to support artists, demonstrating
powerful messages throughout their works. PAUL explores and promotes both
established and up-and-coming visual artists and writers. The Philadelphia Art &
Urban Literary Review brings creative voices to diverse new audiences.

Ms. Ardie Stuart Brown M.Ed.,
Editing Consultant

Ms. Ardie Brown grew up in the West Philadelphia area of the City and has
performed throughout the United States and Canada as one-half of the
performance duo, The Stuart Sisters. Her performances with her sister, Patricia
Stuart Robinson consists of stories related to African American Heritage and the
Civil Rights Movement.

Ms. Brown is the founder of the Spring School of the Arts, educating children
eighteen months to age twelve about the history of both the Visual Arts and the
Theatre Arts. As an accomplished playwright for children's theatre , Ms. Ardie
Stuart Brown joins Paul Review as a consultant for up-and-coming authors and

Summer Star Adams Juan Delgado Najee Dorsey Santiago Galeas

Jessica Gamble Will Kurtz Diego Romero LuzSelenia Salas


Title: Healing Space


Title: Peeking

Title: Unfinished Light

Title: Dangling Feet

"Art is not what you see, but what you make others see."
Edgar Degas



Title: Jesusa Dejesus
Oil on canvas

Live Painting Color Study
Oil on Canvas

Title: Philip Glass
Oil on canvas

Title: Gilberto Gonzalez
Oil on canvas

Oil on canvas

Title: Nelson Mandela
Oil on canvas



Title: Palo Volador
Oil on paper

Title: Regreso
Oil on canvas

Title: Despierta
Oil on canvas

Title: Despierto
Oil on canvas

Title: Safe Space
Oil on canvas

Title: Victorious
Oil on canvas

elbmaG Title: Silence, 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.
Model: Katy Stein

"Gamble uses photography to sustain site-specific
performances that explore the emotional
journey from fear to empowerment.

Her use of fabric and erratic sewing invoke a history of the
female experience, evoking a discomfort and inescapable

partnership with the lived experiences
of a contemporary woman and her body."

Title: Radiate , 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.

Model: Katy Stein

Title: Breath, 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.

Model: Katy Stein

Title: Rise, 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.

Model: Katy Stein

Title: Horizon, 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.

Model: Katy Stein

Title: Still, 2016
Hand stitched embodiments, concept and photography by the artist.

Model: Katy Stein

Artist to Artist


Najee Dorsey

Artist, Sheena Garcia interviews Photo by Seteria Dorsey
Artist, Najee Dorsey for PAUL Review

Sheena: Tell readers about your early journey; how did you evolve into doing art full-time?

Najee: After years of running different businesses in Blytheville, Arkansas and doing my art part-time,
my wife Seteria realized there was time for a change. I mean, we tried everything from
a cleaning business, recycling company, equipment rental and even a gallery but the support wasn't
there. We lived in a very small town so after consideration of moving to New Orleans or Atlanta,
we chose Atlanta. We moved in 2005 to pursue careers as artists. I didn't know what to expect
but I felt that if I gave it my all, we would be fine. I've always had an interest and talent for art and
while I didn't have any close examples that inspired me, I did find people who encouraged my practice.

Sheena: What informs or influences your work?

Najee: My heritage and culture greatly influences my craft. My mantra is stories untold are stories
forgotten and it's my job and responsibility to use my talent to uplift and represent the culture. I believe
there is warfare on the black image from mass media and we artists can create images to offset those
representations that don't speak to who we are. I also carry this philosophy with the pages we curate for
Black Art In America which is a company I founded in 2010 to document, preserve and promote the
contributions of the African American arts community.

Sheena: In what ways does your work connect to your past? How does that past inform the future of
your work?

Najee: My work connects me to my past because I follow in a tradition, it's a continuum.
As artists before me created art and built institutions for the advancement of our culture, I too, we too,
do the same. I believe my work gives back on many levels; first, in how it speaks to and uplifts our
culture. Secondly, I've used the success of my art to build a platform and company for the promotion
of the industry. Lastly, Seteria and I are avid collectors and patrons of the arts. We understand that
it is a cycle. We understand how we can be artists and not be stewards of the arts.

Sheena: Tell readers a bit about your medium and what connects you to that
chosen medium.
Najee: I work in a mixed media technique. I love mixed media because I use
material, that is often found and re-purposed. The materials bring so much to the
work. I like using vintage photos, old bottle tops and used advertising materials
because it all has a history. It's like gumbo! The recipe is so much better together
than the sum of its parts alone.
Sheena: Where have you found your greatest support as an artist?
Najee: So much of my influences comes from the support of my Mom and growing
up in the South. The "In-Law's House" speaks to nurturing and home for me.

Title: In-Laws House
mixed media

Sheena: There seems to be such strong symbolism between honor and opposition in the visual story,
"Deacons for Defense" Could you tell us about it?
Najee: Growing up, we never heard about the men who fought against injustice or for the rights
of our people and after I learned of these men from the 1950's and 60's, I had to share the story
by giving a visual representation to it.

Title: Deacons for Defense
mixed media

Sheena: Tell us about this homage to Claudette Colvin.
Najee: "B4-Rosa" Is about the stance that Claudette Colvin made on March 2,
1955, nine months prior to Rosa Parks. She refused to give up her seat on a bus
in Montgomery, AL. Again, stories that are untold are stories that are forgotten
and I like to tell the stories that are little known and give voice to them.

Title: B4-Rosa
mixed media

Sheena: There is a wonderful melding of African and Native American imagery here.
Najee: This work is an homage to my Cherokee/Native-American heritage.

Title: Cherokee Black
mixed media

Sheena: What is your connection to the little boy in this work?
Najee: This is me, a self portrait of sorts. Its speaks to being an only child and open
paths that lead to a life well lived. I love my art-life and the life I share with my wife and
those who follow my journey.

Title: Life's a Journey
mixed media

Artist to Artist

Spotlight Photo by Doron Gild

Will Kurtz

Artist, Sheena Garcia interviews
Artist, Will Kurtz for PAUL Review

Sheena: Tell readers a bit about yourself. Where did you grow up?

Will: I grew up in a town just outside of Flint Michigan. I moved around a lot as a boy and became
quite shy. I spent much of my time playing outside in the fields and nearby ponds and streams,
catching frogs and crayfish.

Sheena: When did you first realize that becoming an artist was something you had to do?

Will: I remember making models in my room as a boy, but never had any art classes in school.
I originally wanted to be a veterinarian, but ended up becoming a landscape architect for 20 years.
While practicing landscape architecture, I started creating art on my own in my mid 30’s. I lived in
northern Michigan at the time so there was not many galleries or art in the area. I still found a way
to be creative, like making big painted cardboard structures that I slid down the hill in with my kids
at the winter festival. I remember making a huge fish, a very detailed yellow house with a red roof
and flower boxes and a picket fence, all out of cardboard. By the age of 50, I was living in Boston
and working as a landscape architect and finally decided I needed to do art full time.
I applied to graduate schools in New York and was accepted into The New York Academy of Art.
That was when I finally took it seriously.

Sheena: What routines or patterns did you have to change or acquire in order to "get serious"
about developing your art and style?

Will: I had to quit my full-time job and go get an art education. I had to be fully submerged in the
art world in the best art city in the world. I had to make connections with other artists and galleries.

Photo by Doron Gild

Sheena: Where are you currently developing your art? What is it about the people, the city, the
space that inspires or informs your work?

Will: I currently have a studio in Ridgewood, NY. It is near Bushwick where many artists have their
studios. The city is just so full of life with so many different people somehow managing to live
together. I think it is the variety and all of the different cultures here that inspire me. Every day,
I find someone who inspires me who I would love to sculpt. I tend to be drawn more toward the
everyday people who are struggling to make a living. I really feel connected to all of humanity here.

Sheena: What is your most important artist tool?

Will: I would say my iphone. It is where it all begins. I walk the streets and take candid shots
of people who capture my attention. Usually, I pretend like I am texting so as not to alarm them.
I sometimes have to run up the sidewalk and get their photo as they walk by so I can get a photo
of their face. When sculpting, my favorite tool is tape. It is how I create the forms with tape and
layer upon layer of newspaper.

Sheena: Have you worked with any other medium before you chose to work entirely in newspaper?

Will: I tried many different materials before settling on newspaper. I have used cardboard,
Styrofoam, wood, stone, clay. It was through trial and error that I came across paper. It was perfect
for the speed I like to make sculptures and the final raw look. It allows me to capture just enough
realism and detail without becoming overly obsessive.

Sheena: What connection do you have to this medium?

Will: I like the way it feels in my hands. I like how it is a recycled material. I like how it is disposable
and breaking down like our bodies. I like the imagery and words, which we are all about. It feels
very urban and edgy.

Dog Walker
2013, 64” x 120” x 96”, wood, wire, cardboard,
newspaper, tape, glue, matte medium, UV matte
varnish, dog leashes and collars.

Sheena: Tell us how the Mike Weiss Gallery discovered your work?

Will: At the New York Academy of Art, two others and me were selected to do a 3rd year with
a studio and stipend. At the end of the year we also got a three-person show. Mike Weiss actually
came there to see one of the other three artists and saw my work and started representing me.

Sheena: As you move forward in the development of your work, what's next in the evolution
of your sculptures?

Will: I am looking to do more installation work where I transform an entire space. I want to create
environments with people, animals and objects where the viewers enter the world of the sculptures
vs. the sculptures being in our world.

Sheena: What advice would you give other artists who are trying to get their work noticed?

Will: Be true to yourself and don’t try to make work that you think will sell. The indicator is if you are
having fun making it and it is not a struggle. Go to openings, do studio visits and try to get in as many
group shows as you can. Have patience and make your best body of work. Eventually, you will get
noticed. But have perseverance and patience because we are not really in charge of the timing.

Dog Walker
2013, 64” x 120” x 96”, wood, wire,
cardboard, newspaper, tape, glue,
matte medium, UV matte varnish, dog

leashes and collars.

Title: Pardon The Interruption, Please

Title: Julio and His Sisters
2011, Julio and His Sisters, 66” x 54” x 38”,

wood, wire, cardboard, newspaper, tape,
glue, matte medium, jewelry.

Title: Brighton Beach Bench
2012, Brighton Beach Bench, 50” x 96” x 35”, wood, wire, cardboard,

newspaper, tape, glue, matte medium, wigs, jewelry, glasses.

Title: Coming Together
2013, 51" x 33" x 32", Wood, wire, newspaper, tape,
glue, matte medium,UV matte varnish, wood chair


Title: Tsunami
(Reinterpretation of "Desnudo" (Nude), by Miguel Pou)

12" diameter
Acrylic on pandero

May 2017

Romero is constantly exploring art as language, juxtaposing
emblems and contexts in any opportunity or intervention.

Title: Eñglish
11” diameter
mixed media on pandero


Title: “El bombón de ELA”
Aerosol and enamel on pandero

10.5” diameter
Citicien 2017

Title: La P.R.O.M.E.S.A.
What is being promised is debt

8.5" x 7.25"
Woodburning and acrylic on cigar box

May 2017
Diego Romero

Starting point: La Promesa / The Promise (1928)

Artwork of reference:
Painting by Miguel Pou in 1928:
La Promesa (The promise)

The Appropriation of Pou
Homage to Puerto Rican painter Miguel Pou
an interpretation by Diego Romero

In November 2016, Ponce became my place of arrival and it began my curiosity for the artwork of the
mid-twentieth century painter, Miguel Pou. La Promesa overtook my attention and made me reflect for a
couple of months; it occurred like a compatible allegory that I desired to reformulate in the present, kind
of an ironic sampling or appropriation.

As I got deeper into studying that painting, I got used to the heaviness in the gesture of the old, peasant
woman represented in the design as a way of acknowledging the tiredness and distress of her-story and
her offering to divinity with devotion.

The concept of the promise evokes hope and commitment. I have to admit that I pretended to re-design
the expression of the portrayed elder, even though - I distracted myself - I realized she is not The
Promise. She is holding the promise in her hands, a small painting depicting the Virgin of Montserrat and
baby Jesus (centralized) on an apocalyptic landscape, surrounded by winged beings that bring or take
those who are burning in a lake of flames.

As revision of that and in my interpretation of the original artwork, “The Promise” is being returned
(like a commodity) in a plastic bag; typical, generic and commonly used in retail packaging.
I worked the image on a wooden cigar box “Padrón no.1” brand, used as a reference to the historic and
prominent tobacco industry in Puerto Rico. The tobacco industry preceded the oil refineries and
pharmaceutical facilities that later occupied the Island which owned and distressed several of the most
prestigious landscapes, particularly those in the South.

I would consider myself inappropriate or redundant if I were trying to update Pou's statement of 1928's
"Promise", although I do believe it is relevant to revisit and to refresh his legacy and patrimony. Basically,
I picked the image of La Promesa with the challenge of grounding it to the realization of the present context
of the island. Personally, my impetus to research Ponce's most remarkable painter is analogous with my
return to a changing island after coming back from Philadelphia, where Miguel Pou studied in 1935.

A bridge with the artist has been built, a conversation with history has opened a developing interest
between contemporary artists and art collectors too. This work is part of an exhibition that includes the
artist's original paintings (preserved by local collectors) and another room for contemporary artists, like
me, responding to Pou's work.

An initiative of Gretchelle Dilan, a cultural altruist and art collector from Ponce who historically
reunited some unpublished and rare works among Pou's paintings.

salaS  aineleSzuL

Title: Orgullo Cultural
Sugar Cane Festival, Philadelphia. PA

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