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Jerry Misko’s 2D paintings fill BlankSpace

October 3rd, 2006

Guests speak with artist Jerry Misko inside BlankSpace during The Las Vegas art and design scene looked to the light recently — to neon light, that is.Last Friday, the monthly “Mojitos & Modernism” event at BlankSpace in Mandalay Place featured a reception for local artist Jerry Misko.

“Mojitos & Modernism” is held at the design store on the last Friday of each month. It’s an evening of artists meeting with the public amidst BlankSpace’s tableau of art and design items, complimentary mojitos and a fantastic cheese spread.

According to Sandra Sharma, BlankSpace buyer and general manager, “Mojitos & Modernism” is growing in popularity and attendance.

“More and more people are getting to know about it … new people who haven’t been to it before,” Sharma said.

According to Sharma, Las Vegans are excited to learn that there is an organized, regularly-held event at Blank Space.

“They’re really excited that were doing events,” Sharma said.

Kelly Scherbenski, also of Blank Space, added that the event is getting traction in some circles.

“It’s becoming known as the ‘Fourth Friday’ of the month,” Scherbenski said in reference to Downtown Las Vegas’ “First Friday” celebration.

And while previous “Mojitos & Modernism” events have brought in national and international guests, featuring native Las Vegan Misko made perfect sense for Sharma.

“He is well-known for his paintings of iconic signs,” she said. “I think his paintings are a lot of fun. They’re really representative of Vegas.”

At the event, Misko met with a healthy crowd of a few dozen during the event.

According to Misko, his brightly-colored paintings of signs developed from his earlier career. “I spent a lot of years doing graphic design,” he said.

This makes for an all-up-front quality to Misko’s paintings. There is little depth of perspective in his paintings. The haloes around signs, which might be seen in real-time vision as curves and outward arcs, are rendered by Misko all on the same plane.

“When I make my paintings, I have this in the back of my head — my formative years — doing 2D things,” Misko said. “Very flat, high tolerance in color separation.”

Misko doesn’t favor an infinite point in his paintings, a source of distance and a perceived third dimension.

“Process-wise, that’s how I want it to look,” Misko said. “They’re supposed to be flat… about light.”

Misko’s paintings, such as the ones featured at the “Mojitos & Modernism” September event, are 100 percent Las Vegas.

“These things started as coming out of casinos after partying — light and signs,” Misko said, referring to his youthful apprenticeship in artistic observation.

“I use the reference all the time — Monet painted water lilies because they were there, I paint signs because they’re here. I love ’em.”

“The paintings are like me. They’re big, they’re pretty and they’re smarter than they look,” Misko said, laughing.

Bedazzling conversation at BlankSpace’s ‘Mojitos & Modernism’

July 30th, 2006

Mojitos & Modernism
San Francisco-based jewelry designer Robindira Unsworth is pictured, center, during her discussion at Blank Space inside the Mandalay Bay on Friday, July 28, 2006. Unsworth’s current line of jewelry is based on Near Eastern traditions.

With a backdrop of glinting gold, shimmering silver and multifaceted crystal jewelry, BlankSpace, the future-forward and mid-century-is-now design boutique in Mandalay Place held its July “Mojitos & Modernism” event on Friday evening.

“Mojitos & Modernism” is an informal series where taste-making designers and artists meet with art-lovers to discuss their works. The free event is held on the last Friday of the month.

This month’s featured artist was Robindira Unsworth, a San Francisco-based jewelry designer. Unsworth’s current line of jewelry is based on Near Eastern traditions. According to Unsworth, the line was inspired by jewelry she witnessed as a guest at a royal wedding in Jordan.

Unsworth said her jewelry caters to many tastes — from a penchant for the ornate and effulgent to that of a more a more understated and simple adornment.

Throughout the event, Unsworth met with “Mojitos & Modernism” attendees to explain her methods of creating jewelry and her artistic vision.

And, as “Mojitos & Modernism” has become known for, there were the mint-and-lime-infused, namesake Cuban cocktails and a fabulous spread of artisan cheeses to be enjoyed for all.

Fully loaded art show at the Winchester Cultural Center

July 17th, 2006

Art at Winchester Cultural Center

Looking for a quick fix of contemporary art in southeast Vegas? Well, pardner, be sure and stop by the Winchester Cultural Center by July 22.

There, in the center’s small gallery, The Grand art show is on display.

You can touch a button on a DVD player and watch the hip-hop-notic beat box winner, a fun, stop-start breakdance video by visual artist Damien Gilley. The video was judged best in show and bagged the titular one grand prize.

Also showing are photographs by Gilley, and other works by artists Catherine Borg, Shan Michael Evans, Haya Gil-Lubin, Stephen Hendee, Larry Rogosch, Grayson Ronk and Dustin Sparks.

The Grand show, a yearly event, was juried by contemporary artist Tim Bavington, an MFA graduate from UNLV. Bavington recently had a critically-acclaimed one-man show at G-C Arts, which is located in Downtown Las Vegas’ Arts District.

For more information on the show, call the Winchester Cultural Center at 455-8239.

The Winchester Cultural Center is located at 3130 S. McLeod.

Click here for related gallery.