3 Years in the Art Cave – Recent works by Sam Vaughan

Several themes that keep popping up in Sam Vaughan’s work include: dark history, absurdity, nudity, people staring at potatoes, and Civil War general George Custer. He has a particular affinity for painting Custer and describes the General as “like the annoying neighbor from over the psychic fence – always stopping by and mooching a beer.”

The works in this show were created over the last 3 years in a shipping container attached to an industrial building in Berkeley, California which Sam has dubbed the “Art Cave.” Although he claims it’s too depressing to be used as even a storage unit, Sam finds the Art Cave conducive to his “intuitive and improvisatory” way of working. 

Sam attributes his strong sense of narrative to his long-standing interest in printmaking and its history. According to Sam, “the strict procedures and limitations involved in printmaking, especially lithography, are another help in my work – a brake on the chaos. I enjoy ink drawing for much the same reason – you can’t correct it or reverse course, which provides some sort of anchor amidst the mania, and focuses the mind while working.”

The Secret Gallery will be holding an opening reception for “3 Years in the Art Cave” from 5 to 8:30 PM on Saturday, August 10 at the Secret Gallery, and an artist talk with Sam Vaughan will take place on Sunday, August 11 at 1:00 PM.

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