My first gallery show… this Friday! (and cats)

My very first gallery show kicks off with an opening reception this Friday, February 1st, at Rare Device in San Francisco, from 6-9 pm. This is a group show with seven other creatives, called Sustenance: 150 Years of Feeding the Community at 600 Divisidero.

Rare Device, San Francisco

Rare Device presents “Sustenance”, a new group gallery exhibition with a focus on the unique histories of 600 Divisadero and the positive effects the residents of the space have had on the community. Curated by Lauren Venell, the show features local art by Lauren Venell, Heather Hardison, Samantha Barsky, Alyson Thomas, Dan Brazelton, Tina Jett, Ally Trigg, Andrew Venell, Karen Curtiss and Brian McHugh.

Opening Reception: Friday, February 1 from 6 – 9 PM

About “Sustenance”: 600 Divisadero Street has provided nourishment to everyone around it for over 150 years. Since 1876 this piece of pasture has housed an orphanage, a Bank of Italy, a neighborhood meat market, and now, Rare Device shop and gallery. Each of these institutions has fed the community–sometimes with food, and sometimes with more spiritual sustenance, as a place for neighbors to gather and feel at home. The community also feeds 600 Divis, much like tributaries feed a river. Generations of San Franciscans have flowed through here, sometimes stopping and spending time with the people, goods and spaces that have grown and changed here over time.In 1876 the Pacific Hebrew Orphan Asylum was built on the site of 600 Divisadero, which fed dozens of children–and, after the 1906 earthquake, more than 50 other members of the local community as well. Even though the kitchen was destroyed, Superintendent Henry Mauser grilled meats over an improvised fire pit for weeks following the disaster.  50 years later 600 Divis continued that tradition by serving local residents with high-quality, low-cost meats at Divisadero Meat Market. Divisadero Meat Market stayed open under just two different owners, finally closing in 2010. Now the storefront is home to Rare Device, a welcoming spot where people can nourish their spirits and homes with meaningful, beautiful objects, or gather for community events like children’s story time.

About Lauren Venell: Lauren Venell is an independent designer and artist from San Francisco, whose products can be found in stores around the world. Her work has been published in titles by Chronicle Books, Klutz/Scholastic, and Quarry Books, and featured in several media outlets including The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Everyday with Rachel Ray and on Canal+ Television. Lauren lives and works with her husband and an ornery parrotlet named Elvis.

About Rare Device: Rare Device is a store and gallery that features functional experiments and original ideas in art, design, craft and fabrication. Owner Giselle Gyalzen constantly seeks out objects that are beautiful, evocative, well constructed and thoughtful. We are pleased to bring to our San Francisco store an ever-growing roster of local, national and international artists and designers for a truly “rare” experience.
Rare Device (raredevice.net) is located at 600 Divisadero Street, at the corner of Hayes. Store/gallery hours are Monday through Friday noon to 8pm, Saturday 11am to 7pm and Sunday 11am to 6 pm.

For more information contact: Giselle Gyalzen at info@raredevice.net or 415-863-3969.

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You may recognize Lauren Venell as the talent behind projects such as Sweet Meats and Deep Creeps plush sculptures, and the Conference for Creative Entrepreneurs. She will also be featuring a Sweet Meat-style installation at the show, complete with a real, live deli case. Delicious.

My entry is a three-dimensional papercut/mixed media work encased in a shadow box, titled “Preservation”.

Tina Jett - Preservation
Tina Jett - Preservation

My official-sounding description:

The concept of preservation can be seen as three-fold in this French boucherie (butcher shop). First, the culinary aspect: Preservation of meats in the absence of refrigeration was the original basis of charcuterie. Today, the focus is more on the flavors and preparation of those preserved meats. Second, the architectural aspect: Preservation of old storefronts and handpainted signs keep us in touch with the more colorful edifices and advertising of days past. And lastly, the societal aspect: Preservation of a way of life; in this case, the act of purchasing goods and services from local vendors, enabling a more personal connection to one’s community and food.

I’m very excited and honored to be included in this show, and at a gallery that houses work that I’ve admired, myself. The exhibition will be on display through February 28th. If you can make it out this Friday night, be sure to say hello!

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In other news… We just brought these crazies home from the SPCA yesterday. Timber and Willow, 8 months old. They kept me up almost the entire first night, and spent some time play-biting my ears and face while I tried to sleep, but luckily, they’re still cute enough to keep. :)

If you’re in the mindset to get a new pet, be sure to visit your local shelters. Especially consider animals older than one year, who often get overlooked but are just looking for some lovin’. We opted for siblings so they wouldn’t be split up, but there were so many other older, sweet kids waiting for new homes.

Have a great week!

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