David Ball

111 Minna Gallery is pleased to present Harum Scarum, a group exhibition that will include works by David Ball, Katherine Brannock and Jesse Balmer

111 Minna Gallery
111 Minna Street, SF, CA 94105
415.974.1719
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Harum Scarum – opening reception February 2, 2012 from 5pm til late

David Ball, a San Francisco-based collage/mixed media artist, will be exhibiting an impressive collection of 20 collage/mixed media works on hand built wood panels. In his latest series, Ball depicts the pursuit of happiness that reflects on his own personal transcendence from a place of emotional darkness to a place of light.


Jetsam, 2011

Andria Spencer, brilliantly reviewed Ball’s series “Postcards from the Unconscious” created for the 941 Geary Groups show “The City We Love.” Her explination of his work is perfect. I encourage you to read the full review here.

Unlike traditional photomontage, Ball eviscerates images and repurposes the color and form: a doll’s torso becomes a flower, a peacock feather becomes the face of a doe-like creature, ribbon candy forms an open grimace, eyelashes are fashioned from octopus tentacles. This hints at a kind of surrealism, the upending of one meaning for another, but his works are not as prescribed as that. They are neither dreamscapes requiring translation, nor are they beautiful accidents-the images lie somewhere in between, in a place where imaginative surgeries create exquisite monsters, chimeras of paper and paint.


Entwined, 2011

David Ball had this to say about his process:

It evolves from a place of continual change, embracing the chaos to achieve a sense of order. My process begins roughly, with quick, abstract and gestural under paintings that gradually evolve into an elaborate and well-defined composition through my “call-and-response” style of working.  … The subconscious will present itself if you stay out of it’s way.

A fascinating glimpse into what this means can be seen in the this short film by Shaun Roberts‘. It is the second of a three part feature on David Ball.

Shaun Roberts spent a great deal of time with David Ball in his studio creating the film series and was able to capture many work in process shots. The following photos are provided courtesy of Shaun Roberts, ©2011.


All of the artwork on Ball’s recent pieces wrap around the sides of the panels.

David Ball prefers to use National Geographic as a source for his collage material and he aquires most of his collection from the San Francisco recycle center SCRAP. Considering how much time I spend in this unique place hunting for my own odd art supplies to build my sets, I am surprised we have not bumped into each other. For anyone in the bay area who is a maker/artist, SCRAP is an invaluable resource. They accept donations from a wide variety of sources so on any given day you might find a barrel of silk flowers, thousands of buttons, stacks of vinyl records & 16mm teaching films, bolts of fabrics, bins of pastel chalks and yes… 100s and 100s of issues of National Geographic. I adore this place and would love to see more talented folks take advantage of it’s offerings. I am thrilled that a creative like David Ball is a regular.

To find out more even more interesting tidbits about this thought provoking artist, you may read a fantastic interview by Juxtapoz conducted prior to Ball’s involvement in Culver City’s WWA Gallery’s group show, “All the Little Sorid Details.”

Here are a few excerpts from the article.:

6. Something you want the world to know about you: That I am not the country musician David Ball, the wide receiver David Ball, the porn actor David Ball, the wedding photographer David Ball or any other. I need a new name.

7. Something that annoys or frustrates you about people: That there are too many sheep.

8. Something that concerns you: See #7.

16. Your greatest quality: Either emotional honesty or my mastery of the Thai spring roll.


Flee, 2011

In regards to his inspiration:

My personal life greatly informs my process and the themes behind my imagery. Throughout my life, I’ve experienced a series of extreme shifts in my psycho-emotional state of being that have taken me through periods of emotional highs which inevitably turned to lows that resulted in paranoia, aggression and depression. I feel my willingness to transcend the chaos saved my life and was due in part to my being open to taking medication and in part due to my personal resolve to trust in the love and kindness of someone close to me.

“Sometimes I am commenting on reality. Sometimes I am escaping it. The work is kind of a discourse between those things.”


Wallow, 2011

If you are in San Francisco, I hope you will stop by to see this extraordinarily talented artist’s work in person.