Glovebox Film Festival

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

An interview with artist Amber Hakim by Brandon Aguiar

Glovebox intern, Brandon Aguiar takes to the Beantown streets to hit up some real artists, check out his interview with Amber Hakim!

BA: I know you're in school at the Art Institute of Boston to be a photographer, but you once said to me that you like to work in multiple mediums. Can you elaborate on what mediums you prefer and why?

AH: Sure thing, I originally went to school for Printmaking, which was my first love. I used to paint and draw a lot but my attention now-a-days in more on photo for school reasons. I like to consider myself under the label of "artist" rather than strictly "photographer" because I still work with other mediums. Before the semester started up I was getting back into drawing. Right now I'm really into this play on women and mother nature, juxtaposed with the satanic rituals associated with the nude female image and the idea of  nature as satan's "church," which was influenced from Lars von Trier's movie Antichrist.  Speaking of nude every other art school student, I love nudity and I focused on the nude female, or rather scantily clad female form for a while. I curated a small student show last year with a few peers that was heavily based around those ideas and I did a lot of small sculptural pieces using animal bones and found objects with nature elements. I also carry those ideas in my current printmaking. I'm really into intaglio and etching. I love the physical work that goes into printmaking. I love getting my hands dirty. Seriously, I love ink covered hands and the smell of metal on my fingers. Is that weird?

BA:  I don't really think that's weird, I love the look of an artist.
BA: Now, getting back to photography - I understand that you work with in both "snap shot" photography and your fine art work....what about both do you find interesting?  

AH: Yeah, there's kind of two sides to my photography. I'm really into the snap shot asthetic and the freedom of on the go 35mm shooting. I like catching these moments of my life and documenting the people around me. I was really hooked on shooting my friends all the time and just the stuff we did when we hung out, just screwin' around. Sort of like Nan Goldin way less intense and more humerous. It  was a way to document my life and a way to reminisce. On the other side I do more conceptual work. I like being able to challenge myself with this side of my photography and work more with symbolism, double exposure and what not. I like working out more complicated ideas. Its therapeutic and and rewarding to create images that I can really connect with one a deeper level. One common thing that ties both sides of my work styles together is that I deal with people and relationships or identity. I'm working on a project right now about my relationship with my parents and growing up in a religious household. So I'm shooting still in the documentary style but I'm also combining my conceptual style by overlaying symbolic arabic text, kind of like Shirin Neshat and Lalla Essaydi were doing but I'm not trying to be political with it. Oh! and I also shoot film for the most part I hardly do digital but sometimes its nice to just shoot and not worry about film.

BA: Who are some of the artists you find inspiration from? 

AHI've been hooked on Ryan Mcginley for a while now. He's definitely a big influence on my snap shot style work.  and Nan Goldin is sick too. Richard Billigham is another favorite of mine. Um, aside from those I love Francesca Woodman  and Sally Mann, Diane Arbus, Annie Liebovitz and Wolfgang Tilmans and pretty much every featured photographer on haha.

BA: You have done some of your work with Urban, can you explain that in more detail?  You have also mentioned in conversation that you would some day like to run your own gallery. How did those plans come about and what are some of your goals for your gallery?

AH: Well basically I started up a Society6 profile which is a place for artist to show and sell work. They print it on canvas or t-shirts or even iphone skins. Urban is an affiliate of Society6  and they search for artists to sell in their Urban Print shop online. So I have a photo that was chosen and sells in their online store and its going pretty well. I love what Society6 does to help out artists just starting out. Its definitely a way to acquire affordable art which is hard now a days. My ultimate dream is to run my own gallery. I just love the idea of being able to help out other artists get there work out there. I worked for a gallery for a year in Beverly and now volunteer at the Fourth wall  and I just love the atmosphere of working in a gallery. I Thought about it being a little cafe type gallery which would be good for keeping the business afloat but these are pricy future plans I've got. Someday though I feel it could happen with the right planning. I want it to be a a space for young artists to have a chance to show their work cause its hard when you're young! But, yeah owning a gallery would be a dream come true. I just like the idea of surrounding myself with art  and making its my life which isn't far from the truth now but I just hope for the day when I don't need to work a shitty retail job.

check out her stuff here and here

Monday, March 28, 2011

Artist Toolbox: Get Involved

Glovebox is committed to providing our community with great resources - whether it’s getting your art in front of the public,  learning how to price your work, or staying motivated.  No one will deny that it takes perseverance and determination to make a career out of art. We are here to help you. Tell us, what do you want to know?

First, you can check out your local resources. As an artist, motivation can be a challenge. Sign up for a class at a local community center to meet peers, improve on a skill or learn a new technique. Stop staring at an empty canvas and try something fresh today!


Glovebox had the opportunity to meet Ed Hauben, the Director at Newton Community Education (NCE) center, to talk about motivation. The NCE is a hub for educational, social, cultural and vocational programs for adults and children. Learn from a professional Illustrator in the Illustrating Children’s Books course. In the class students develop and design original ideas into a detailed storybook. Students will even learn how to publish work under the guidance of the instructor.
“[The NCE] offers everything from basic drawing, intro to painting, pastels, Chinese brush and Impressionist painting to advanced painting, figure drawing, illustrating children's books and all levels of digital photography.” Ed Hauben, Director of NCE tells Glovebox about other invaluable resources they started for artists, “Because of the demand, NCE now offers Art Group, a place for artists to meet, review, and talk about their work, and The Business of Art, a discussion about how to promote and sell work.”
The NCE is always looking for new local teachers who would like to teach. Ed tells us that he encourages professional artists to “Share [their] passion with highly motivated and interested students while giving back to the community.” A great resume builder and a way to make some extra cash.

Sign up for a Newton Community Education class today at Get familiar with the Massachusetts Cultural Council, ArtSake and other local community centers. And if you start teaching at NCE, let us know because we want to take your class!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Interview with Dan Osterman by Brandon Aguiar

Church's Rocks- scanned pencil sketch, colored in photoshop
Glovebox caught up with Boston based landscape artist, Dan Osterman, here is what he had to say:
GLVBX: What is it about the New England landscape that you continuously find inspiring to work from? 

DAN: Well I came up from New Jersey in ‘78 when I really wasn’t strong at making a habit of doing art. I still hadn’t committed. I love the Jersey Pine Barrens and the South Jersey shore and I did some work but it was sporadic. I had to move elsewhere to get serious about life. One thing about New England I immediately liked was it wasn’t as muggy in the summer, it’s gotten muggier since then though. What do I like best about the N.E. landscape? Getting lost on the backroads. It began out in Central Massachusetts for me. Little towns that time forgot, the Quabbin Reservoir, Mt. Wachusett.
GLVBX: I noticed that your style is very loose and free. Do you paint your work on-site quickly or is it actually a more planned out process done from photographs?

DAN: I do work fast. I pack a lot of stuff to be prepared. I work in water-based media, so that means acrylics, inks, watercolor pencils, prepared masonite panels, heavy watercolor paper. The ends of brushes, nib-pens, palette knives for scraping are big with me. With painting sometimes it’s all about the texture. Since ’94 we try to get up to Monhegan Island in Maine every year. It has been a destination spot for artists since the early 1900’s. It’s got heavy, dense woods as well as crashing shoreline and the highest cliffs on the US Atlantic coast. No cliffs in New Jersey. When I go out to places like this for a week, I can get 2 and 3 good pieces done in a day. And I draw a lot. Many times a painting is done later at home and based on a sketch that I think I can improve on. This is very different from working from a photograph. The machine only holds you back from remembering what you saw. It is a hindrance, a wall between what you see and your eye. Drawing and painting are not about reproducing, they are about seeing. And painting is more about the head and making choices. A lot harder. I’m not saying I don’t take digitals of stuff that I find interesting because I do. It’s all put into the great maw. But to me everything starts with drawing which is about being in the world, immediate and freeing. I guess this is why often my painting has aspects of drawing in it. Now you mentioned that you liked the piece that is on the front page of my website titled “Cuttyhunk Island”, which is sort of a little Martha’s Vineyard for Republicans out off New Bedford. That piece has tons of color and some people take it for a painting but it’s all Photoshop. I did a pencil sketch of some rocks, put it away for 5 years, scanned it in one day and colored it up. Voila- a new medium.

GLVBX: How often do you travel to favorite/new spots?

DAN: Well there’s Monhegan. A few years ago I discovered the South Shore. Took a car trip down 1A south through Scituate and Marshfield. If you’re willing to get lost and go down sidetracks you’re liable to find some exciting things. There’s a place in Marshfield that used to be a railroad bed and now is a road with houses lining it. The road ends where the marsh and the river begin, but the remains of the railroad continue and there’s a manmade island that was created as a support for the railroad with a little house on it in the middle of the river. Whoever owns it probably barbecues on its little porch in the summer facing the setting sun watching the river flow. This is where I did the “Red Boat”, which is on the website. There’s an old railroad bed like this on the Cape too that crosses Rt. 6 in Eastham that is quite magical. It snakes up through Wellfleet and the Pamet river and harbor in Truro, and disappears once you come to 6A into Provincetown. They discontinued service on this line in the 30‘s or something because the weather and the tides did such a number on certain lengths of it. If you’re really adventurous you can drive parts of this railroad bed but you also might get stuck in the sand. Anyway it’s all for inspiration. I pack my stuff up and go. I walk a lot too like in the dunes. 
GLVBX: Who are some of your favorite artists and why?

DAN: I love too many to name and always come across more. But the influences mostly are Frederick Franck for the drawing and Robert Henri and his Ashcan School. Charles Burchfield, George Bellows, Arthur Dove, Georgia O'Keefe, Polly Thayer, Milton Avery, Ben Shahn, Thomas Hart Benton. And the Wyeths, particularly Jamie, the youngest. Very queer stuff.
GLVBX: What are your plans for the future?

DAN: These days I’m just trying to find a gallery to take some of my work.

Check out more about Dan on his site:

*All photo courtesy of Dan Osterman

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Interview with a Super Hero

MRBrandon Aguiar, newest member of the Glovebox team, has all the raw talent and imagination that we love here at Glovebox.  We were really excited and grateful when MRBrandon Aguiar came to intern with us and even more excited when we learned about his killer artwork.  He may just be our Superhero!

GLVBX: Welcome to Glovebox! We are excited to have you as our newest member.  Can you tell us why you were interested in interning with Glovebox?

BA:  I am equally excited to be interning with you.  The way I ended up becoming your intern was kind of random and completely unintentional. When I first found out about Glovebox I was just hoping to maybe be part of a future show.  Then I became interested in Glovebox because it seeks to help out emerging artists show around Boston and because you and Liz graduated from AIB (Art Institute of Boston- Brandon is a current student at AIB).  So, of course when Liz asked me if I wanted to intern  I was like "hell ya I do". So far its been one of the best experiences I’ve had since moving to Boston and I don’t want it to end any time soon.

GLVBX: Awe! thanks MRBrandon!
GLVBX: You are in school right now at the Art Institute of Boston, What is your major?  favorite class?

BA: I am a Fine Arts major (painter). My favorite class is actually one I haven’t taken yet. It’s an advanced painting class that allows you the freedom on creating your projects.   I've heard that each students assigned paintings have to be rather large which is always exciting.  It's basically one of the classes they (AIB) offer that I’ve always been waiting to take.

GLVBX:  After seeing your artwork on your site and in person, I would describe your subject matter as Morphed Super Heroes.  What is the inspiration and concept behind your work?  How would you describe your subject matter?  and GLITTER?!!?!

BA: Hahaha ya my super heroes are these morphed combinations of popular heroes that are sometimes morphed with alligator parts and/or fashion symbols, which sounds so weird when described like that but that’s basically what they are. My work to me is all about this weird fascination that I have with super heroes.  They have always played a huge role in my development as an artist. However, I wouldn’t describe my self as a comic book fan, although I’ve just never really been able to break away from them. As I reflect on my obsession with heroes, I’ve realize that my work is filled with references for people and points in my life.  For example, Bat Man represents my childhood, The Hulk represents my father and Caption America represents how I obsess over random things that I have no real interest in besides its visual aesthetics.

The glitter is a new medium I introduced into my work in early November. I’m still experimenting with it but I feel it brings this really cool look to my paintings that no other medium can really give. I try not to use too much of it though because I feel that it may damage the work by making seem tacky.

GLVBX:  What is it about Super Heroes that interests you?

BA: To be honest I have no idea I just think their costumes are just so interesting and colorful that I’m obsessed with mixing and matching them.

GLVBX: Your work has a twist of Francis Bacon meets Marvel. Who is your favorite artist and why?

BA: Francis Bacon is an inspiration of mine and is a favorite artist of some of the painters I love. I have so many favorite artists so I’ll just name some off my top head: George Condo, Anthony Lister, William de Kooning,  Franz Kline,  D*face, Maya Hayuk and Kaws.

GLVBX:  What is the next step with your work?  You had mentioned something in passing about a Super Hero Costume store?  Tell us more!

BA: Haha my fake company. Ya I have this idea that if super heroes did exist, they couldn’t just have one costume, especially since most of them live in New York, which gets really cold in the winter. The example I always give to explain what I mean is Spider Man.   His costume is extremely thin and during the winter months there’s no way he isn’t bothered by the terrible cold. But his costume is way to thin to fit a sweatshirt or something underneath.  So... what my "company" would do is create costumes for these heroes for the various winter months/other months.  Perhaps a Spider Man costume lined with fleece. At the moment its just a basic idea, but I am in the process of having knitted super hero gloves made.   The gloves are kind of where this whole idea really started from. I also have plans for more paintings, walls sculpture and possibly some neon sign work.

GLVBX:  Ooo Neon!
GLVBX: thanks MRBrandon!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Congrats to Abstraks

New online art mag, Abstraks released its first issue this month, featuring the IN on all things art in Boston.  We especially loved the piece about the Yes. Oui. Si gallery.  The gallery just emerged as a forefront in hip new grassroots spaces to exhibit local art.  

More about Abstraks:

Abstraks is a Boston based online Art magazine, focusing on artists and the art realm in Massachusetts. Abstraks' main goal is to help pave a way and promote new and influential artists in and around Boston. The magazine will feature different styles that cover a wide spectrum of artistic mediums. Abstraks is free and will showcase a new issue every month.

Check it out at