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Art Scene :: “Exposed” • Casey Baugh Solo Exhibit

Casey Baugh Autograph

In January 2016, I had one of the most memorable days of my life; I attended a Casey Baugh Charcoal Demo Workshop in Downtown LA!


jessica lee sanders, casey baugh, pastimes


Casey Baugh has since been a great influence on my work and has inspired me to become a better artist. When we received Arcadia Contemporary‘s notice of their hosting a show of his recent works, I was ecstatic. Being able to see his stellar work up close and personal is something not to be missed.

Due to a prior out of town commitment, I was unable to attend the pop-up opening night of his solo exhibit,”Exposed” this past Saturday, May 20. However, my boss, Linda Wehrli, was able to attend and even interview the artist! (So jealous!) Here’s her story:

My husband and I arrived at NOH/WAVE before 8PM, but the artist hadn’t yet arrived. While the string quartet was tuning their instruments, we leisurely perused the exhibit. The Little Tokyo venue’s ample space allowed guests to view the work comfortably without being crowded. I managed to take close ups of Casey’s works to show to my students. I’m pleased to share them with you.

Below are close ups of Baugh’s charcoal works that blew me away.


Close ups of his oil paintings that left me speechless.


Around 9PM, I spotted a tall gentleman sporting a man bun, talking softly with a guest. I quietly sidled up for a listen and was pleased to discover the tall gentleman was indeed, Casey Baugh. I politely introduced myself, and then profusely thanked him for setting the bar high for the visual arts. He beamed at me.


Casey Baugh with Linda Wehrli


I then pointed out how much his work reminded me of John Singer Sargent. He gushed that Sargent is his main influence! Casey also revealed owning an entire shelf of John Singer Sargent reference books. Nailed it!

Going on a hunch, I mentioned my passion as well for Sorolla and Zørn. Bingo! Those are the other two virtuoso master artists that Casey greatly reveres as well.

Revealing to Casey that I am an art teacher, I asked if he used the same Acetone on the oil paintings as he did with his charcoals. He does not. Instead, he concocted a cocktail of liquids that when sprayed, gave a similar diffused look but allowed him to continue painting. In other words the liquid sprayed to create his signature textures did not dry too fast or slow, allowing him to continue working in paint layers. He is as much a chemist as he is an artist. Love this technique.


Casey Baugh texture on Oil


I also inquired if he were hosting any workshops during his current trip. Sadly, he was not this time. However, he did indicate he was considering holding one in the near future at NOH/WAVE gallery. On the crest of that wave, I invited him to consider hosting a workshop at Pastimes for a Lifetime’s studio at no charge. He seemed excited at the opportunity and graciously took my business card. Fingers crossed…!!!

Before we left, my hubby coaxed me into asking Casey to autograph the catalog I purchased from Arcadia Gallery’s assistant. I shyly asked, and he graciously obliged. “Keep the brushes wet!”, he wrote. Indeed!


Casey Baugh Autograph


The next day I sent a Facebook Private Message to the owners of NOH/WAVE about how much we enjoyed Casey Baugh’s show at their eclectic space. I wanted to know more about them and their space. One of the owners, Yoshino graciously replied from Japan! Here is his kind and informative reply:

“NOH/WAVE is a multi-media creative agency based in Los Angeles. It was founded by artists Yoshino, Justin Hopkins, and food entrepreneur, Mark Manguera (Kogi/Chego).”

I asked Yoshino – What sparked the idea of creating the space…Here’s what he said:

“Justin Hopkins and I were presented with a unique opportunity to open up a creative space in Little Tokyo in LA about 6 months ago. During this time period we decided to create a multimedia creative agency around it. We decided to call it NOH/WAVE which pays homage to our Japanese heritage, the No Wave movement*, and our ties to being based in California. Justin and I both believe in a lot of the same artistic, collaborative, and business principles. We make all decisions together as a team.”

*The No Wave movement came out of New York in the mid ’70s , during New York’s brink of bankruptcy and crime upheaval. No wave has no consistent, singular style of sound by which it was defined. It’s rather known for its experimental, indefinite genre infusion including sounds from funk, jazz, blues, punk rock and avant-garde. Their lyrics often sung in a nihilistic and confrontational crude manner. ~ Sostre News

I’m so glad my boss was able to attend this special event and meet the artist in this eclectic venue. This is one of the many reasons why we love Steve Diamont of Arcadia Contemporary Gallery for supporting these cultural giants and making the connection with them possible.

In closing, I observed that Exposed portrays a different perspective of Baugh’s work. The city scenes and nightlife usually found in his paintings has transformed into beautiful nature scenes with nude figures in dynamic motions. I’ve always been drawn to his emotionally-charged details in the most expressive parts of the body, especially the face and hands. (Fingers are SO difficult to draw. Ask any artist!)

Missed the gallery opening, too? Don’t worry. The exhibition will be on display at Arcadia Contemporary in Culver City through June 8, 2017. Don’t feel like battling the freeways? Here is the link to the complete online catalogue. Be sure to check it out!

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  1. Frank M Pelteson

    Although I am not a member of the art community, but merely an observer of its products, I can only remark on the works from my viewpoint. I tend to react to the psychological and emotional impact pictures make on persons.

    What I notice is the prevalence of moodiness in Mr. Baugh’s works. It makes me wonder what is its cause, and what he has in mind. Other than that, I find his works very professional.

  2. Barry Wehrli

    Glad I was there to see the works in person – he is a truly gifted artist. He’s been added to my Great Art FB album and I’m sure more of his works will be added in the future.

  3. Batool

    Casey’s painting are mysterious, you look at them and you can sense that there is a story or an idea behind them but it’s not obvious. the ambiguity in his painting give you a chance to take the time to think and develope your own story based on what you see in his paintings

  4. Dennis W. Rowntree

    Hi Linda.

    Many thanks for taking the time to write up on Casey Baugh. He is one of my favourite artists I look to for inspiration, ideas and learning the skill of painting.

    I took up art in 2015, hence I have a long way to go in learning the skills of drawing and painting. The one thing I do want to learn is the ability to paint proportions accurately in a portrait or figure. Casey Baugh has demonstrated his great ability in doing this.

    I have two questions. When Casey Baugh is doing a portrait demonstration in a workshop, is he painting in his proportions using the sight-size method or comparative measurement?

    In his large painting, “This Place is Mine”, oil painting on canvas 50×72″, how did he paint out proportions and placement of the eyes, nose and mouth so accurately on such a large scale? How did he do that???

    As a beginning artist, I am always wanting to know how artists get their proportions painted accurately.

    Thank you for your interesting article on meeting with Casey Baugh.

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