the Museum of Pocket Art

Personal Distemper

Guest Programmer Bug Davidson


When is the last time you let it all out?

Short “OVER emotional” 30-ish second video work. Davidson’s program features artists investigating the whole gamut of human flavored guts.

Personal Distemper artists include, Irina Contreras, Zilla Vodnas, Coe Lapossy, Alex Beriault, Noelle Fitzsimmons, and Coorain Devin.

The reason and the end

Gil Rocha

Since the invention of fabric, its purpose has become vast. From clothing, to art, it may be transformed into almost any form yet it has no defined form in many ways. With this series of works I embrace the gestural forms a fabric maintains while at rest; as it awaits to become something "useful". I love the way fabric hangs, the way it melts unto the floor when thrown, the way it tells a story. By embellishing and hardening fabric with vivid colors and tangled forms, my intention is to visually destroy every object around it. I want it to take a stance and visually yell, "I am not here awaiting another use! I will no longer abide to your will and time. After today you will see me everywhere!"

Suffragette Series

Margaret Meehan

In a time of congressional witch-hunts, these Suffragettes painted on 18th cabinet cards are updated in attire and urgency. Drawing strength from the past they are ready to keep the protest march moving forward for all equality.

Release Under Police Freedom of Information

Russell Etchen

Did you and your Computer-Human-Friendlist pillage a small deserted formerly Gated-Private-Community or Loft and discover something overlooked?

Palpable Networks

Jenny Odell

"Art tends to give shape and weight to the most invisible processes. When entire sections of our existence spiral into abstraction as a result of economic globalization, when the basic functions of our daily lives are slowly transformed into products of consumptions … it seems highly logical that artists might seek to rematerialize these functions and processes, to give shape to what is disappearing before our eyes." –Nicolas Bourriaud

The images in this series are attempts to rematerialize that which becomes ever more elusive even as it envelops us completely: the communication networks that enable us to talk, to order something online and have it arrive on our doorstep, to be telepresent. If it is jarring to hear that data centers require huge amounts of water and energy to keep from overheating (for instance, Facebook recently placed a data center in the Arctic Circle), it is because communications technologies so intensely reflect our fantasy of disembodiment. But jpegs and iMessages are no less material than we are. And like the power grid, we may not realize this until the servers, wires, towers, generators, cables, switches, and screens fail us as materials. Until then, these small collections are meant to render palpable the otherwise diffuse components of our day-to-day networked existence.

emoemoji : bear

Dan Boehl

emoemoji : bear is a visual performance that operates by invoking surprise and soulshame, a vulnerable emotional state within us connected to our appetites and desires. The GIF poems combine flickering images and text, in most cases appropriated from third party sources. By reading the poem superimposed over the GIF image, the viewer is transformed into the performer.

The performer must decipher the text by moving the printed reticulated image back and forth as she reads.

The movement of the images heightens the sense of surprise in the performer as the full ramifications of the text reveal themselves through the repeated movement of the images. The surprise and discovery of soulshame in the performer has a transitive effect upon the audience.

By decontextulizing popular and hyper-realistic images from the web and refocusing their meaning through superimposed text, emoemoji : bear seeks to create a state somewhere between Maryln Minter and "abuse of power comes as no surprise."

Dispatches from a Doomed Future

Ken Castelli

Ken Castelli moved to Tangier Island, Virginia five years ago as the inaugural Artist in Residence at the Tangier History Museum. After three years of building exhibits and learning the local dialect (an accent, much like most Tangiermen eccentricities, wholly unique to the island), he decided to make Tangier his home. But this home is disintegrating, bit by bit, chewed away by winds and tides. Tides that swell and surge through the town, unearthing the dead, encroaching on homes, and drowning the marsh. In this exhibition, Castelli, whose larger body of work documents the landscape and lifestyle of Tangier and the Eastern Shore/DelMarVa Peninsula region of the United States, sketches out vignettes of the inevitable. Abandoned by local politicians and put on hold by scientists and studies, the people of Tangier stand on land that is ever sinking and shrinking, waiting for the water to reach their necks.

This series of drawings is both a warning and a dirge. The rhythm of Castelli's linework rings out a threnody for a piece of American history. This tiny world speaks to the universality of our entropy.

Thanks for Sharing

Curated by Jen López

I, like most Americans am inundated with sharing. It takes seconds to share. For better or worse, my networks generate the vast majority of the visual, political and cultural content I see. The artists in this collection of videos were selected because for years I have admired their work and their sensibility has influenced me in some way and what they care to share consistently displays one of two qualities that I prefer to see: Poetics and Things that Make Me Laugh.

To the artists: The world can be a bitter and disappointing place some days, but you guys surprise me, remind me, teach me, inspire me and crack me up! Thank you for your contributions to this project. Thanks for sharing.

Jen López lives in Chicago, Illinois and completed her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago in 2004. She is a recovering academic, makes art for pleasure, curates for fun and the majority of the time is a champion of artisan cheese.

The View from There

Kevin Chen

Chen has been involved in the San Francisco Bay Area arts community for over 12 years as a curator, arts administrator, and visual artist. Since 1998, he has been the Program Director at Intersection for the Arts. He is a graduate of Columbia University.

C –, Frederic Church in Color, After Mathew Brady Studio

Ben Ruggiero

Ben Ruggiero's work has shown both nationally and internationally including Art and Commerce's Festival of Emerging Photography, Fotofest and Austin Museum of Art's New Art in Austin Triennial.

His recent solo project "After Icebergs with a Painter" was shown at Testsite in 2010 and addresses the mythology and visual legacy of Romanticism and its relationship to Photography as realized by Frederic Church and in particular his painting "The Icebergs."

His work was on display this summer in the membership show curated by Ariel Shanberg at the Houston Center for Photography, as well as upcoming work being included in the Museum of Fine Art's Photo Forum 2011. He is a graduate of Bard's MFA program, a Lecturer of Photography at Texas State University as well as a member of the Austin photography collective Lakes Were Rivers.

Seven Years of MoPA, a Retrospective at the Bruno David Gallery

Opening September 9th in St Louis at the Bruno David Gallery, this exhibition features hundreds of intimate small-scale artwork from the first seven years.

How Micro Can You Go? The Museum of Pocket Art's Spring Video Show

Curated by Portland's Grand Detour

With the proliferation of video recording devices and the variety of ways in which to view video, the video artist's intent can get muddled. The initial experience of watching video meant for a large screen fluctuates greatly from seeing it on YouTube. For the 2nd annual exhibition, the Museum of Pocket Art invites video artist to submit work with the intent of seeing work on a mobile device.

Abstract Small

Curated by Mario Trejo

Abstract Small showcases some of Trejo's favorite contemporary painters. The first MoPA show to focus specifically on painting, Abstract Small will utilize the unique parameters of the Museum to explore the intimate processes of the painter, showing works that more than hold up to their large-scale counterparts.

All Business All the Time

Curated by Hannah Piper Burns

This exhibition will "employ" the standard business card as a jumping-off point for an exuberant skewering and subversion of corporate language and structure.

Jan Blythe

Using catalogues, magazines, books, and postcards referencing art, textiles, furniture, interior and industrial design, Jan Blythe's mixed-media collages fracture and re-combine found images into formal exercises far removed from their original source imagery. This solo exhibition is an extension of Blythe's broader art practice, which allows materials to combine and transform in her hands as she manipulates them to unexpected ends.

Inaugural Film and Video Exhibition

Curated by SEO Wan-Tae

With the proliferation of video recording devices and the variety of viewing platforms, the video artist's intent can get muddled. The initial experience of watching video meant for a large screen fluctuates greatly from seeing it on YouTube. For the inaugural exhibition of an annual series, the Museum of Pocket Art invites video artists to submit work meant to be viewed on a mobile device.


Curated by Robert Jackson Harrington

Cognition and decision-making is an inherent aspect to any art practice. This process makes the artist fully aware of self while developing work. This show attempts to remove the decision process from the work and thus provide an insight into the unconscious artist.

Ten Wallets: The Museum of Pocket Art 2006 to 2009

An evening at the Lab featuring our last 10 exhibitions with work from over 40 artists.

Reception on Friday, December 4th from 5 to 9pm. Exhibition continues Sat the 5th, and Sunday the 6th, 1 to 6pm, in conjuction with the Postcard Show 13.

Titanic Piano

Curated by Nancy deY Elkus and Laura Boles Faw

Contemporary society lives in a state, a cultural condition even, of anticipation. The title of the show, Titanic Piano, is an anagram for "anticipation." This incarnation of the Museum of Pocket Art acts as an actual site of anticipation, ultimately reflecting the cultural state of contemporary subjectivity. Whether inventive, escapist, or evocative of anxiety, anticipation propels us into an unknown future. We asked fourteen artists to consider the grand nature of Titanic Piano, with its touch of humor and hint of doom, as it relates to our current global social and economic climate.


Eric Shultis

Eric Shultis is a painter and photographer whose work explores personal history, memory, and gender. He has exhibited his work nationally in galleries and museums including the Illinois State Museum in Chicago and Springfield (solo and group exhibitions), Dadian Gallery in Washington D. C. (solo exhibition), the Urban Institute for Contemporary Art in Michigan (solo exhibition), the Chicago International Art Expo, I Space in Chicago, Sheldon Art Galleries and the Contemporary Art Museum in St. Louis.

Shultis received his M.F.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, and his B.F.A. and Associates Degrees From Kendall College of Art and Design. Shultis has taught at Florissant Valley since 1998. Previous teaching includes the University of New Mexico, Trinity Christian College in Chicago and Kendall College of Art and Design.

Minor Landscape

Curated by Mario Trejo


Immediate Thought

Curated by Mario Trejo

MoPA invited artists and architects to submit sketches, ideas or reactions to the fictional International Museum of Arts. The proposed space houses the world's largest collection of art, from antiquities to contemporary work in an urban space, housed in over 4 square miles of footage. The initial idea for the show was inspired by Frank Gehry's quick sketches of his plans for future designs on napkins. The show hopes to explore the simple elegance and communicative power that a sketch can convey.

Intimate Cartography

Curated by Hannah Piper Burns and Alexandra Chowaniec


Spring 2008 Juried Exhibition

Curated by Clark Buckner


Humble Pi

Featuring work by Los Angeles artist Robert Moya.

Spring 2007 Exhibition

Featuring work by artists Priyanka Gupta and Matthew Cella.

Fall 2006 Juried Exhibition

Curated by Jeannene M. Przyblyski


The Fluffer | Once Upon a Time…

Featuring work by artists Manuel Guerra and Susan Klahr.

Fall 2005 Juried by Exhibition

by longtime MOPA supporter Richard Smit.

Spring 3ver

Work by artists Odin Perez, Marvin Hill and Adrianna Corral.

Fall 2004 Juried Exhibition

Curated by Jose Enrique Krapp and Cindy Krapp


Inaugural Spring 2004 Exhibition

MOPA's inaugural exhibition.

© MoPA