Michele Bledsoe “Forever” acrylic on canvas 6″ x 4″
“Spineless: The Invertebrate Art Show”
Opening Reception January 1, 2016 6pm – 9pm
1506 Grand Ave, Phoenix, Arizona 85007
Some estimates say up to 97% of animal life on earth lacks a spinal column. Their range is staggering: from microscopic protozoa to colossal squids that approach 50 feet in length. Insects, crustaceans, mollusks, worms, jellies, and arachnids take on an amazing array of shapes, colors and structures that vary from the beautiful to the grotesque.
In January at the Trunk Space, a group of artists display works made in homage to our backboneless fellow creatures.
The Trunk Space is one of the best alternative art spaces in Phoenix, Arizona. For almost 12 years now the venue has featured local, national and international performing and visual artists right in the heart of the downtown.
The view from the Trunk Space parking lot
I have been fortunate to not only take part in many of the Trunk Space’s monthly art exhibits, I have the honor of being invited to curate shows as well. January 2014 was International Stuckists: Explorers and Inventors. January 2015 featured Booked: Contemporary Literary Art. For January 2016, I was of a biological state of mind.
I wanted to paint a jellyfish. What a strange and beautiful animal-but also, potentially dangerous. The image of such an exotic creature joined with both the portentous archetypal icons and the B-movie monster mash that are programmed into my psyche, and I knew the picture I had to make.
Richard Bledsoe “The Jelly from the Black Lagoon” acrylic on canvas 20″ x 16″
The subject matter of the boneless animal seem to me a intriguing starting point for other artists as well. So many options available. As is standard with my curatorial philosophy, I selected artists, not individual works. I respect the inventiveness of these creatives, and I always find the show comes together best when I invite them to give whatever they feel represents the theme.
This show was no exception. Once again, Spineless demonstrates the power of synchronicity unleashed.
Hanging the show, with Trunk Space owner and artist Steph Carrico
It always amazes me to see the sheer individuality that inspired artwork displays. The artists of Spineless aren’t just depicting invertebrates. They are showing you something about themselves.
Michele Bledsoe “The Edge of Reason”
Richard Bledsoe “The Immortal Hydra”
Steph Carrico “Swineless”
Dan Pederson “Soft Things”
L.B. Paintings “Vital Impetus”
Ron Throop “Sure, I Like the Way Sparkling Earrings Lay…But I Won’t Sleep in the Desert With You”
Hannah Irene Walsh “Apophis as Round Worm”
Shelley Whiting “The Deadly Leeches”