by Ariadna Zierold

hhh gallery, monochrome, exhibition, tokyo, usugrow, mike giant

This past month the HHH Gallery in Tokyo showed Monochrome, a group exhibition curated by Japanese artist Usugrow.

“Today, the world is brimming with information and a wide variety of techniques, painting tools, and art styles are introduced, but I wanted to think about this in a simple way and let people know that [they] can still show wonderful expression using only simple tools like normal paper, pencil, and ink. Most of the artists participating in Monochrome are originally my friends, except Kyotaro and Ozabu, who I’ve been a fan of for a while. Each artist thoroughly mastered one writing instrument such as a marker, pencil, ballpoint pen, or ink pen. What’s interesting is that all of them use [tools] that are usually categorized as ordinary stationary, not a special writing tool. That means you don’t have to buy lots of paints or brushes to start your art.”

hhh gallery, monochrome, usugrow, tokyo, the citrus report, upper playground

The tools these artists used are simple: pencils, mechanical pencils, black markers, ink pens, ink brushes, and everyday ballpoint pens. However, by carefully utilizing white space not as “blank,” but rather as information to describe space and color, the artists transform pure, untouched white canvases and paper into detailed and complex monochrome landscapes. To achieve this, the artists must enter a fierce yet meditative state of resolve as they add lines to slowly weave their worlds.


The exhibition featured the work from Aaron Horkey, Mike Giant, Shohei, Kyotaro, Toshikazu Nozaka, Ozabu, Sadam and Usugrow.

mike giant, monochrome, hhh gallery, tokyo, upper playground, the citrus report

This was the first-ever Japan exhibition for artists Aaron Horkey and Mike Giant.


Ariadna Zierold

Prints for PDX Opening August 1st at Fifty24PDX

prints for pdx, portland, fifty24pdx, upperplayground
Prints for PDX a print show curated by long time Upper Playground collaborator, Jeremy Fish will Open August 1st at Fifty24PDX Gallery in Portland, Oregon. The show will include prints from many Upper Playground favorites such as Sam Flores, Morning Breath, Mike Giant, Mihael Sieben, Travis Millard, Mel Kadel, Todd Francis and Frank Kozik. Jeremy Fish and Jayde Cardinalli will also be part of the show and in attendance to sign their available prints.

Checkout the preview of the show below:
Jayde Cardinalli, prints for pdx, upper playground

Jeremy Fish, prints for pdx

Jeremy Fish, prints for pdx, upper playground

Jayde Cardinalli, Prints for Pdx, Upper Playground

Travis Millard, prints for pdx, upper playground

Travis Millard, prints for pdx, upper playground

PRINTS for PDX – Screen print show opening August 1st, 2013 6PM

Fifty24PDX Gallery is putting together a screen print show with a great line up of Upper Playground favorites such as Morning Breath, Mike Giant, Jeremy Fish, Jayde Cardinalli, Sam Flores, Michael Sieben, Travis Millard, Mel Kadel, Todd Francis & Frank Kozik.  Show is opening 6PM on August 1st at our Upper Playground location in Portland.

Morning Breath, Mike Giant, Jeremy Fish, Jayde Cardinalli, Sam Flores, Michael Sieben, Travis Millard, Mel Kadel, Todd Francis & Frank Kozik

Flip the Script – Now available online

The most reviled and persecuted form of Graffiti, the Tag, is seldom appreciated for the raw beauty of its skeletal letter forms. Most tags are removed immediately, and thus the casual viewer seldom has a chance to discern the difference between entry level and advanced hand styles.

Within the pages of Flip the Script, author Christian Acker has systematically analyzed a cross section of American graffiti hand styles, contextualizing the work of graffiti writers from around the United States. Acker presents the various lettering samples in a clean organized format, giving the material a proper, formal treatment evoking classic typography books.

Available online: FLIP the SCRIPT

224 pages, Hardcover, 8 ̋ x 10.5 ̋ (178 x 229 mm)
100s of 2-color illustrations, English ISBN: 978-1-58423-460-9

Jeremy Fish x Upper Playground “Listen & Learn” App

Jeremy Fish and Upper Playground have teamed up to create a new app to bring Fish’s groundbreaking “Listen and Learn” exhibition to your iPad and iPhone.

This past summer at Joshua Liner Gallery in NYC, Jeremy Fish created an interactive exhibition, Listen and Learn,  featuring 30 paintings based on stories told my some of Fish’s closest friends and inspirational talents. Each painting was accompanied with headphones to allow visitors to listen to the audio recordings while viewing Jeremy’s visual interpretation of the story on the wall. Fish gathered Snoop Dogg, Aesop Rock, Mike Giant, Lance Mountain, El-P, Ron English, Ricky Powell, and many others to get some of their most inspiring stories on record.

As not all of Fish’s closest fans made it out to the exhibition, we have collaborated on the “Listen and Learn” app, bringing the interactive experience to your iPad and iPhone and bring new life to Fish’s “story paintings” and most experimental gallery show to date. The app comes bundled with 30 images of Fish’s paintings and 1.5 hours of audio stories that accompanied and inspired each piece. The “Listen and Learn” app also comes with a handful of videos and gallery of images from Fish’s exhibition.

Pick up the APP here.