Opening at Anderson Ranch, NOV 15, 5-7 pm

An exhibition I curated at Anderson Ranch, "...of sifting / flowers in the gravels / at the end of the ice age," opens tomorrow evening from 5-7pm

There will be a short discussion/Q & A involving myself, visiting artist and gallery director Jose Ferreira, and Burnham Arndt, Elliot Norquist, and Sophia Dixon Dillo, the other three artists in the show.

The show will be up through the 8th of December. 

The ranch's address is: 5263 Owl Creek Rd. -- Snowmass Village, CO 81615

Thanks for a great show at Hangar 41, Denver

Had my first solo show in Denver this past month--a popup in the cleared Hangar 41 architecture space at the heart of the Santa Fe Drive Arts District. It was great fun to talk to the hundreds of First Friday visitors that came through the gallery. Thanks to those who came by and those who bought work. 10 of 18 works sold. Hope to bring my work down again sometime soon!

Getting things set up. 

Article in Aspen Times about the recent shows

Chris Hassig: Close in, far away and bursting onto the Aspen art scene

The physical version with Aspen and the gondola in the background.

The physical version with Aspen and the gondola in the background.

Artist Chris Hassig is the man of the hour on the valley art scene, with solo exhibitions of his work filling both the Nugget Gallery in Aspen and the Wyly Community Art Center in Basalt. 

Across both shows, most of Hassig’s work has a personal aesthetic and visual language that’s instantly recognizable. The Nugget exhibition, “Seeing Fast and Slow,” showcases his “Grass” series — hand-drawn ink pieces that look like minimalist geometric shapes from far away, but up close reveal themselves to be made up of intricately detailed grasslike forms. The Wyly show, “Close In and Far Away,” is broader in scope, including grass pieces alongside ornate maps of an imagined city, cyanotypes and mixed-media work with hand-sewn overlays with threads running over pen-and-ink pieces and etchings. 

Nearly all of his work invites up-close, extended study. He has a way with baroque detail that would make Wes Anderson proud. 

“I envisioned the Nugget show as an LP, putting forward a statement that is fairly tight,” Hassig explained. “Whereas at the Wyly, I wanted to give a glimpse of my process and all the roads I’ve been down.” 

Hassig, 27, has previously had one solo gallery show – at the Nugget in 2013 – and has had his work selected for local group exhibitions such as the Aspen Art Museum’s Roaring Fork Open. 

 

This winter, with the Nugget show opening in early March, another artist dropped out of a show at the Wyly. The Basalt gallery had been in talks with Hassig about a fall show, and asked him to move it up. Hence, Hassig is enjoying a big spring coming-out party with two upper-valley showcases. 

Hassig grew up in Carbondale and left home for school at Middlebury College in Vermont, and later studied printmaking in Massachusetts. He currently makes art in his free time while making a living at Bonnie’s restaurant on Aspen Mountain. Mostly self-taught, he brings an outsider perspective to his work. 

“I feel like I’ve been doing art forever,” he said. “But only in the last four years I’ve gotten really serious about producing professional grade artwork — work that I intend for other people to look at.” 

Hassig has drawn his whole life, he said, and spent 12 years or so filling a sketchbook with increasingly detailed drawings and maps of his imagined country of Saiopor (the Wyly show includes a massive map of the fictitious Ralesis, Saiopor, filling eight framed 24-by-18-panels, and several pieces that use pieces of Saiopor street grids). 

“That was where I got my start, working in that sketchbook,” he said. “It was a secret endeavor of mine.” 

He traces the exquisite (and time-consuming) detail of his hand-drawn style to working in such small sketchbook, trying to pack as much of Saiopor as he could into its pages. 

“I got really good at drawing in a tiny hand,” he said. “That’s where my dexterity came from.” 

The “Grass” series originated in a postcard-size drawing he made while lying in the grass, trying to capture the up-close complexity of grass. It’s evolved into a mind-boggling body of work that blends the abstract with botanical illustration and embraces the tension between them. From across a gallery, a piece might look like a triangle or a sphere or an eyeball, but up close it reveals a new world of tangled grass blades and shapes. They’re obsessively detailed up close, yet minimalist from far away. 

“It counterbalances the complexity of the drawing,” he said. “I like that yin and yang aspect. … I like that it’s not completely esoteric and intellectual. Kids can get into them. Anyone can. But they can also be taken seriously as contemporary art.” 

Like any ambitious artist, Hassig is focused on improving his work and finding an audience. For now, he said, the Roaring Fork Valley is an ideal locale to do both. 

“I think Aspen is a good place to launch yourself, because it’s such an intimate, small place and you’re not going to get lost in a sea of anonymity as you might in Manhattan or somewhere,” he said. “And it’s a concentration of people that are interested in art and can buy it.” 

atravers@aspentimes.com

http://www.aspentimes.com/news/15560832-113/chris-hassig-close-in-far-away-and-bursting-onto-the 

Two Upcoming Shows:

There will be two upcoming shows of my work in March, 2015, both in the Roaring Fork Valley.

nuggetlogo.jpg

The first will open on March 5th at the Nugget Gallery on the Hyman Avenue Mall in Aspen and run until April 2nd. That show will focus primarily on recent grass drawings. Reception tbd.

 

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The second opens on March 10th at the Wyly Community Art Center in Basalt, CO and will run through April 25th. The opening reception will be Friday, March 13th.

First Solo Show July 25th - Sept 5th, 2013 @ Nugget Gallery Aspen

192163_209426692416322_2953065_oI'm having a show! Some of what you see here and other additional work will be on view beginning in the end of July at the Nugget Gallery, 415 E. Hyman Ave. in Aspen, Colo. It will overlap with the Carbondale Mountain Fair, ArtCRUSH Aspen, and Labor Day weekend, so hopefully one way or another you can make it. Mark your calendars for the opening reception on Saturday, August 3rd. Hoping to have a musical component--we'll see.

This is the cozy but cool space, photographed by Michele Cardamone during a recent English in Action event: 216248_642014745824179_1248865033_n

www.nuggetaspen.com

3-plate map etchings

growth_abstractoverlay4 growth_abstractoverlay5 Above: semi-abstract compositions using three different etched copper plates. I blocked out certain sections of each plate with newsprint as it ran through the press, resulting in a fairly unpredictable combination of all three. The three plates, each typifying a different form of urban growth (medieval, city beautiful master-planned, and suburban sprawl) are printed on their own below.

growth_preindustrial

growth_citybeautiful

growth_suburbia

Cyanotypes

cyanotype_elkmountainseries Exploring the combination of cyanotype solution (a light sensitive emulsion I paint onto paper) and cut paper stencils to block out imagery.  Above: Sopris & Pyramid

cyanotype_elkmountainseries2

Maroon Bells

cyanotype_water

 

Abstract "water". Also using cut paper to block the light, but in a more amorphous way.