Artist you should know

Rodney Ewing: Artist You Should Know

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The “Artist You Should Know” series highlights artists before they exhibit their work somewhere awesome or while they are doing so. It’s our way of supporting the creative community and helping to keep San Francisco a strange and wonderful place. Meet artist Rodney Ewing, a member of the Three Point Nine Collective of African American SF artists. He also work out of the Pacific Felt Factory artist complex. 

You can catch his current exhibit Longitude + Latitude at the Museum of African Diaspora until June 23rd.


The Pugilist (Emile Griffith)

Name: Rodney Ewing

Medium(s): Works on paper and Installations

What was your first job in San Francisco?:  I worked for a Lamps Plus in the stock room.

“I’m a sophisticated graduate with a BFA” or “FUCK art school!”?:  I have a BFA in printmaking from Louisiana State University and a MFA from West Virginia University.

What was your last great night out in San Francisco? I went to Demetri Broxton’s art opening at Patricia Sweetow’s. Amazing Work!

If you can only paint with one color for the rest of your life, what color do you choose? Black. You can express so much with subtle gradations and dense saturations of the grey scale. The possibilities would be endless. Besides, I still sketch out all my ideas in black ink on white paper.

Any SF artists you think are outstanding right now?: Angela Hennessey, Kija Lucas, Ron Saunders, Brian Singer, Nyame Brown, Ramekon O’Arwisters, Erica Deeman, DeShawn Dumas, Cheryl Derricotte, Leila Weefur, Simone Bailey and Lava Thomas, William Rhodes, Hughen/Starkweather, to name a few.

What’s the coolest gallery right now? I don’t know about coolest, but I really respect the programs at Jessica Silverman Gallery where I got to see the work of Matthew Angelo Harrison last year, whose work is in the Whitney Biennial this year. Outside the SF/Bay Area, Mariane Ibrahim Gallery who is in the process of moving to Chicago. Both of these programs really support the growth of their artists.

High Cotton, from Rodney Ewing’s “Longitude + Latitude” show at the Museum of African Diaspora.

Favorite street art right now? Cinta Vidal. She is a painter from Spain. Her use of one point and two point perspective is amazing!

What does it take to make it as an artist in SF these days?  Having the ability to grow within your own line of inquiry. Staying true and being sincere to your own mission, but also making work that is accessible to people outside the art world.

What’s coming up for you? I currently have a solo show at the Museum of African Diaspora entitled “Longitude + Latitude”, its up until June 23. It is part of the museums Emerging artists program. From June 10th-August 19th, I will be creating work at the Headlands Center for the Arts in one of their Project Spaces. The title of the project is called “The Devil Finds Work”. It’s a documentation of how the Black body has had to navigate physical, psychological, and social spaces in attempts to protect itself.

The artist at work.

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

I've been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle , "an SF cult hero": SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York, but to those familiar with my work, I'm just "that douchebag who writes books about cheap stuff and drinks a lot".