When I was growing up in the 1980s, it was nearly impossible to think about sharks without thinking of the movie JAWS. Although the original film was actually released in 1975 -the first 80s sequel wasn’t until JAWS 3D (1983)- it was such a groundbreaking cinematic accomplishment and it permeated our culture to such a degree that it was difficult to see imagery of a shark swimming without instantly hearing that infamous John Williams tune doom-thumping through your skull. JAWS helped launch Spielberg‘s career and has even been credited as the father of the summer blockbuster. The film transcended the horror movie genre in such a way that the idea of a killer monster shark not only felt like a plausible storyline, but it also felt as it was a real life inevitability. Those of us who were not marine biologists -especially, those of us that were incredibly young- accepted the idea of JAWS as the quintessential interpretation for the cartilaginous fish and often internalized it as a reality. What it taught us was that, completely unprovoked, a shark will eat your ass whole. Even more, they just might jump up onto your boat or simply bite the goddamn thing in half. In 1987, the Discovery Channel began airing their annual shark week series to help us regular folk gain a wider respect and understanding for these majestic animals of the deep, which had been striking unwarranted fear into the hearts of so many for so long. It’s fair to say that, over these last 2.5 decades, leaps and bounds have been made in the way of remedying the PR disaster which began for shark kind in the mid-70s, but logic and fear can not always co-exist on the same plane and it can still be difficult to shake off the impact made with those original negative impressions (not unlike with the HYUNDAI EXCEL). In reality, humans are a great deal more of a threat to sharks than they have ever been to us and many species of the animal have become increasingly endangered. According to NOAA Fisheries, “over 100 million sharks are killed each year” by humans, both accidentally, as well as intentionally. Fortunately, organizations like PangeaSeed have been erected to help reverse this trend and, in association with San Francisco‘s SPOKE ART, they are presenting a new group art exhibit with the hopes of raising some money to help aid in that endeavor even further.
Based out of Tokyo, PangeaSeed is a non profit organization who’s mission is “to bring to light, and eventually an end, to the cruel practice of global shark finning.” To raise money for the cause, the organization has produced and curated a new group exhibit called SINK OR SWIM, which will be opening tomorrow night in San Francisco. Hosting the event will be the Spoke Art gallery; masterminds behind such highly successful exhibits as “BAD DADS” : A Tribute to the Films of Wes Anderson and “Quentin vs. Coen” – An art show tribute to the films of Tarantino and the Brothers. As could be expected by any Spoke Art event, PangeaSeed has recruited an impressive list of talent to be a part of SINK OR SWIM, each of whom is contributing new original works or prints to the exhibit.
Here’s the full list of contributing artists:
Dave Kinsey, Josh Keyes, Jeff Soto, Jim Phillips, Rhys Cooper, Brad Klausen, Natsuki Wakita, Shark Toof, Akinori Oishi, Mike Stilkey, Rah Akaishi, Faunagraphic, Tim McDonagh, Clint Wilson, Mario Wagner, John Fellows, Spencer Keeton Cunningham, Matt Dye, Yoh Nagao, Wrecks/Nao Harada, Cupco, Paul Chatem, Skount, Koji Harmon, Jessica Ward, Michael Glinski-Gale Hart, Skinner, Claudio Ethos, Alison Sommers, Nathan Spoor, Dan May, Roland Tamayo, Ingri Haraldsen, Jen Lobo, John Malloy, Josh Hart, Kaitlin Beckett, Ben Wilson, Serge Gay Jr., Tapecat and Kevin Earl Taylor.
And here are the specific details about the event:
SINK OR SWIM – A Benefit for Sharks and Oceans
Friday September 23rd
(show will be on view until Sunday, September 25th.
Times: Fri 6PM – 10PM, Sat and Sun 12PM – 7PM)
Spoke Art Gallery
816 Sutter Street
San Francisco, CA
For official Facebook event page CLICK HERE.
Below is a selection of sample works from the exhibit, selected for preview specifically to show the variety and quality that this exhibit has to offer. All works are available for purchase with all proceeds going to the PangeaSeed non profit. All sales are on a first come first serve basis, so attending the opening and/or visiting the exhibit this weekend is the best way to insure that you get your hands on any piece that you might have your eye on.
*Following the opening weekend, remaining original works and prints will be available through PangeaSeed, so please be sure to sign up for their mailing list for more info and updates.*
To inquire about purchasing a particular piece, whether listed below or featured on the Spoke Art website, please use the following contact information:
Guache on illustration board
6″ x 6.5″
“Yarns of the Misunderstood”
Screen print on fine paper
Edition of 5
12″ x 18″
16.5″ x 18.6″
Graphite on paper
Edition of 350
24″ x 18″
Edition of 30
Oil on wood
13″ x 10″
“The Art of Salad Making”
Ink and acrylic on books
12″ x 26″ x 9″
Spray paint and acrylic on wood
12″ x 16″
“My Two Cents
Mixed media on wood
12″ x 12″
Acrylic and paper collage on canvas
24″ x 20″
Acrylic, Ink, and color pencil on wood
24″ x 12″
Porcelain with overglase enamel