The most recent installment of Grrrrrl Power, an all-female art show featuring artists from around San Diego County, was held in early June at the Art of Framing Gallery on Adams Avenue. It's a nice, yet very small venue that couldn't quite accommodate the crowd who were forced to line up outside the door.
It was the best they could do in what one of the artists called an "insider's city." Tanya Januszko said it's hard to find space in San Diego. Local galleries, she said, are extremely difficult to break into.
"Getting in the door somewhere is so tough," Januszko said. "That's where [Grrrrrl Power] comes in."
Grrrrrl Power is the brainchild of Bill Pierce, a promoter of "underground" art exhibits throughout San Diego. Pierce runs Radioactive Future, the outfit responsible for getting the word out "grassroots style," meaning websites, e-mail lists and printed flyers, posters and stickers.
Pierce said Grrrrrl Power's theme was inspired by what he sees as the under-representation of female artists in mainstream galleries. "The galleries who stay around become such a scene filled with snobbery," Pierce said.
Another artist featured in the show, Bridget Rountree, agreed. She said bigger galleries look for more traditional work to please their target market. "Galleries are always geared toward a very specific demographic," she said, "white, upper-class and male."
A quick look at San Diego's biggest galleries, like the Museums of Contemporary Art in Downtown and La Jolla, as well as the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park, bears out that argument. Most of the featured artists-at least currently-are male.
Pierce has invited even more women to participate in Grrrrrl Power 3: Young Americans, which will be held Saturday, July 2, at a new location-the Music Trader in Kensington. He says he wants to "keep up the momentum" by continuing to hold monthly shows, but now that he's got a bigger venue, he'd like a place with better wall space.For a list of the featured artists, visit www.radioactivefuture.com or www.grrrrrlpower.com (that's five Rs). The Music Trader is located at 4072 Adams Ave., Kensington. 619-563-0826.