Another Indefinite Hiatus

My Favorite MAOI has been struggling to get my focus over the last 3 years. In sad attempts to bring it back, its never hit that glory of its first few years. I will never stop being interested in music, art, or finding inspiration all around me. I’m just changing where I share that information. One of my biggest dreams has been to drive around the country and explore folk art, local music scenes, and do a few studio visits. I’m working hard right now to make that dream come true. A part of that is to build my audience, but not on this blog. I’m directing my focus on Blanket Fort Adventures, which is an online reflection of everything that excites me. I encourage you to check out the about me.

If you happen to stumble on this site because of one of the awesome fun interviews I did or somehow I captured Googles attention and you like what you read, please say hi by tweeting me at @basicallybekka — you’ll make my day!

I don’t think I will ever give up My Favorite MAOI as its my first blog child. We’ve been through so much together, and I’m already committed to owning the domain forever. It’s in the WILL future children. But for now I leave you all with the following…


Tran Nguyen New Interview for New Works

Thinkspace Artists Tran Nguyen Erik Jones Alex Yanes

Tran not only creates beautiful work, she is equally stunning inside and out. This is the last  weekend (well today really, Saturday March 15) to see the “New Works” show at Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City. NY artist Erik Jones and GA artist Tran Nguyen are showing in the main room, while Miami artist Alex Yanes takes over the project room. My favorite show of the year; there is a stunning balance of composition, beauty, and colorful fun through out the gallery. Erik Jones work connects Tran’s soft and ethereal pieces to Alex’s bold and chunky installation, although in separate rooms the entire gallery feels like a cohesive curated piece.

Here is a quick interview I did with Tran about the show, make sure to check it our before it comes down on March 22, 2014.

Tran Nguyen New Works

MAOI:  How would one phonetically pronounce your name? Or would you like to give MAOI readers a special way/nickname to address you with?
TN: My first name is pronounced “tron” like the movie and my family name is “wen”.  In summation, “tron wen”.
MAOI: How do you take your coffee or tea? 
TN: I recently made the transition from coffee to tea for health reasons.  I like it simple with no additives and blazing Godzilla hot.
MAOI: Did you have a “F**k yeah, that’s amazing” moment while creating this series? (modesty is over-rated)
TN: Yes — when I was creating “Living In a Forgotten Fissure I”.
MAOI: What was playing in the background while you were creating this recent body of work; music, Netflix, other?
TN: Ted Talks, The Amazing Race, artist podcasts, and a lot of music.
MAOI: What do you really like or admire about the work of the other artists your showing with at Thinkspace Saturday March 1, 2014. 
TN: Erik’s and Alex’s works are incredible on their own, but I find it amazing how we all complement each other so well, with each bringing their own creative innovation.  Erik’s is colorful like Alex’s while my work is figurative like Erik’s, and so on.

The Season of Spring at Flower Pepper Gallery Opening 3/1/2014

season of spring

 I’ll say it, I’m incredibly jealous of Daniel Rolnik. An adorable art critic, print production owner, traveling art aficionado, writer, and now curator. In September of 2012 I put down my curatorial hat, as I was having a hard time juggling a full time job and curating. And after being honest with myself, knew I wanted to focus more on writing than curating. *Sadly even that hasn’t been as frequent as I would like. So the fact Daniel now has a 300 piece show under his belt at Flower Pepper Gallery, I’m a gorgeous shade of jade.

I won’t be able to attend the show, not because I can’t be thrilled for someone’s success. Daniel knows I’m envious of him in a friendly way. But I’ll be at Thinkspace for their “New Works” show. But I’ll be sure to stop by during its run March 1, 2014 – April 4, 2014.

Here are a few of my favorite pieces from The Season of Spring!

nicole brukman

Nicole Bruckman

graham curranGraham Curran

JulianCallos1-e1393290733126Julian Callos

Liz McGrath

Elizabeth McGrath

details about the show after the jump…

* I did finish writing a book in 2013, so hey now.

Continue reading



I’ve been developing a YouTube channel that is a funnel for my interests, another outlet to share my thoughts and be expressive. My goal is to have a lot more art and music related content posted on the channel, a part from the silly Tag Videos and Haul purchases. An example of this was my Vlog of attending the LA Art Show a few weeks ago, well a solid month ago.

The show was an incredible visual stimulation overload. By the time we left, I was almost completely desensitized. Seeing pieces and galleries we had missed on our four hours of art absorption on the way out, I felt only the slightest tug at my art heart strings saying “turn around and see what you missed” . The LA Art Show CAN NOT be done right in one day. Even if you give yourself enough time to not be rushed, you end up skimming over pieces because something else grabs your attention more. You miss just being with each piece, and taking in all it has to tell you before your brain burns out.

While watching back at the pieces I filmed, I realized I have a strong affinity for mixed media and repurposed art. The structural and three dimensional aspects of the pieces that really grabbed my attention were so well constructed. The artistry was balanced with this technical craftsmanship that was awe-inspiring. Yet there were post modern paintings executed with classic techniques and touched upon today’s society, making them rich social artistic commentary on the world we live in today. There was so much I didn’t get on camera because I was shy. I’m getting better putting myself out there in public, and I just need to remind myself it’s for the greater good of sharing the art and the experience.

Hope you enjoy my LA ART SHOW experience!

More details on the pieces filmed after the jump.

Continue reading

Phoenix Art District for the win!

Never have I seen so many colorful and fun murals in one area. In Los Angeles the street art is spread out, from Downtown to Santa Monica behind buildings and down alleys. But Phoenix art district has stepped it up and put us to shame with its art district. Art District in Los Angeles means a collection of art galleries, with modest store fronts and a few wheat paste signs sprinkled on walls or light post. But in Phoenix, it is a collection of larger than life expressions of creativity. I came upon Roosevelt Street on accident. Deciding to venture out past my comfort zone established by where I had been staying during my little weekend getaway. We ventured to the “other side” of the ten freeway and found a tasty place for lunch, afterwards I intentionally turned down this and that street on my way back to the freeway when I turned down Roosevelt and was compelled to stop. SO MANY MURALS!

Won’t lie, a few illegal u-turns were made in the process. Having to park my car a second time after I drove further down the street and spotted more amazing murals. I don’t usually stop and enjoy street art. I notice it and then keep moving on in my vehicle. Not anymore! I’m really motivated to just pull over my car for a quick second and take a picture. Unlike these gorgeous and fun pieces that will be up for a while, some of the murals/ street art in Los Angeles you never know when it will disappear. These are just a few of the murals I took pictures of as we were in a bit of a rush, but there are way more to see and check out!

More information on Phoenix Art District



Interview with artist Casey Weldon


“Comparing your work to others is often only good for a kick in the gut. ” C.W.

Name: Casey Weldon
Nickname: Big Head (It is, physically not figuratively. I think)
Sign: Virgo

Food: French Fries
Book: Catcher in the Rye (Cheesy answer, but it’s the only one I’ve read more than once!)
Season: Summah
Favorite Medium: Liquitex Soft Body Acrylics

MAOI:  What animal is your spirit guide?

CW: Mmmm, Sloth?

MAOI: What superhero would be your sidekick?

CW: Which one is the one that gives good back rubs?

MAOI: Bathroom read?

CW: Any random trivia book.

MAOI: Do you remember the first public space you showed your art in? How were your nerves, what was the response?

CW: Yes, it was in Las Vegas and the response was mostly positive, and I was a sweaty mess. I am still often a sweaty mess.


Continue reading

Colorful Timelapse Painting by Lora Zombie


Lora Zombie‘s beauty and blue hair is as striking visually as her paintings. A disciplined self taught Russian painter, she plays with water colors ability to bleed and run creating movement which transcends beyond the compositions line and structured form. I came across her on Colossal and loved watching the time lapsed video of Lora’s layers of water color build up from water downed splotches to dense pigment, all coming together to create her stories image.

A Curator’s Commandments to Artists – #1

#1 – Thou Shall Not Drop Off Art Work That Is Not Ready To Be Hung


In my three years of curating group shows, my number one pet peeve and actual problem that at times would put me in a bind; was that artists would drop off art work with no way to hang it. Or would leave brackets with me, but then give me the responsibility to install the brackets, which made me nervous because I didn’t want to damage the piece in the processes. This is not a nice thing to do to your curator. Depending on the person and the location your curator might not have the tools or the time to install a way to hang your piece. I never carried wire, brackets, or a drill on me. My tool box was equipped to hang art on the wall, not make a piece able to hang. Sometimes I would have immense time crunches. Needing to get my show up an hour or two before doors and stressing about incomplete pieces was not helpful. Thankfully in the few times I came across this problem, I was able to get assistance from the framing shop down the street, Bunny Gunner. But if they were not there, then those artists would have never had their work on the wall.

Yes, making your work able to hang on a wall is the artist’s responsibility. This is like a construction worker building a house, and not putting in a front door. Why would you leave your work incomplete? If you want your art to be showcased, then why would you drop it off with someone unable to hang it. If you want your piece to be purchased, give your collector an easy way to display it on their own wall. Would you want to buy something that was not finished; pants with no zipper or Doc Martins with no laces?

Exceptions to this rule; you’re an artists working with a fairly large gallery that is established and you have discussed with them who will handle framing/ how your pieces will be hung. Unless you and the gallery/ curator talk about the hanging process in detail; always assume your pieces need to be ready to be hung*. This makes you look like a professional artists, a serious artist and are steps towards making a good impression on the art world and who you work with.

Unless you want your piece leaning against a wall on the floor, make sure it can be hung by a nail before you drop it off.


If you are a curator or gallery owner and have a few commandments you would like to share email

CODY LUSBY Smothers with Butterflies


(photo stolen from Matthew Hodges)

Name: Cody M Lusby
Nickname: Mustachio
Sign: Aquarius/Capricorn

Color: naples yellow
Scent: Bounce “outdoor fresh”
Food: cookies

MAOI: Are you superstitious?
CL: Not really, but I try not to walk under ladders and I don’t like breaking mirrors.

MAOI: If your art was a cereal, what would it be/ similar too and why?
CL: I would have to say “Basic 4” because it is a delicious blend of sweet and tangy fruits, crunchy almonds, and a wholesome variety of gains. Just like my art is a blend of spray paint, collage, acrylic paint and oil paint.


Continue reading