Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Footage by Omeed Manocheri

The other day I got an email by Kelly Keltos who had just recently interviewed Andrew McClintock for a school assignment. This was quite interesting considering how he is the director of the Evergold Gallery and has featured artists such as Sandy Kim. Check out the video and read the interview.

Andrew McClintock an interview with Kelly Keltos

Andrew McClintock is not only the owner of small tenderloin gallery Evergold Gallery, the founder and editor of international magazine SFAQ (San Francisco Arts Quarterly) but also a 28 year old resent grad from San Francisco Art Institute. Today we find out about how he got himself to this place and what goes into juggling his lifestyle.

Tell me a little about how you became a Gallery owner/ founder and editor of a magazine?

Well it started a couple different ways, art school. I was doing a lot of photography, making zines, making artist books. The gallery specifically was started with a group of guys that I went to the Art Institute with, we all graduated and found this space. we ran it for the first year, it was a very alternative space. Then a lot of the partners left and it transformed into a more professional gallery. Through making zines and artist books I put out a magazine called Rise Above Haters, that was my first experience with putting out a much more polished and mass-produced magazine. And also through running the gallery and seeing there was a lack of the local art scene in the press, that gave me the idea to start SFAQ.

And that happen, what year?

The gallery January 2009, and the Magazine April 2010.

You said that your partners kinda dropped off and did there own thing, I read that Greg Ito was one of your parters, what is your relationship with him like today?

Yeah so, I own all the businesses now and he's an employee for the magazine. We were business partners at first but now i'm the sole owner. It's been OK, any kind of relationship can be difficult and rewarding at the same time, we had different objectives and styles of working. The decisions that were made were for the better of the companies.

You started SFAQ because there were no other publications with a comprehensive art listing what do you think is the reason is the success of the magazine, in a day were print media is fleeting?

When I started, everybody was like you're crazy print is dead. What I've found is that, on the level that I'm doing it on, is, it's not dead and there is this desire to have this tangible object that covers the scene as well as importing and exporting information from the bay area community to New York and LA and more international as well.

SFAQ isn't just something that promotes Evergold, how do you get all of those resources to be such a leader in the art community?

The intention was never to create something for Evergold, I just happen to have a gallery, so that was an added bonus. It's two completely separate forces, SFAQ is about supporting the community as a whole and Evergold is just a gallery. So I keep them as separate as possible.

What factored into the tenderloin as a location for the gallery?

It was extremely cheap, which is changing now, but I can also get away with a lot of stuff, like having loud performances and crazy installations, that might kind of extended to outside as well. I also just like the energy here. It can be a little tiring sometimes, when you're faced with the crack heads and the dealers, you know it's the underbelly of the city. The more time I spend here, the more I realize how fucked up it actually is, but that energy makes me work harder because I isolate myself in here, in the office. I got make something happen, because outside you see the complete other end of how you could end up, in a sense. Also, I like being connected to Down Town, feels kinda like New York a little bit. Where in, for example, the Mission it's all sleepy, and sunny and everybody's trying to hang out, rather just work.

What is the Gallery's relationship with some other other Tenderloin lower polk galleries?

It's good, we are part of the polk street art walk which is good, sometimes it works out sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes my schedule doesn't work out with this so we won't be open for the art walk. But, the Thing Quarterly, which is an awesome publication, they just moved next door. Jessica Silverman is a really big San Francisco gallery, one of the few galleries has a big international presence and has all the major art affairs, she's moving in and that's certainly great. Then there's all the small galleries that come and go. So there is a sense to build a community but it's kinda spread out. I don't know if Lower Polk, I'm all the way over here, it's kinda a stretch sometimes. But I am close to the 49 Geary galleries, so there is that cross- over as well.

You represent a lot of internationally owned artist, in a city that's know for representing local artist, does that affect Evergold?

It's great, it's interesting. For selling work and press and making a bigger splashed, over half the artist I work with are New York based, that have had some time in SF or the Bay Area or involved some how. With that, these artists are already in the larger markets and already have a collector base out there, so it's a way to reach out in different ways, like with Jacko Weyland's show, there was no local press, but I got press from New York. So it's kinda give or take. With the openings, if you have a local artist, the openings crazy, all the kids come out, but he might not be selling as much work. Every show is different, so that also an interesting part of the process.

About how long do you work with each artist?

Typically the shows are about a month to five weeks, but a lot of the artist I show are doing there second or third solo show overt the corse of the existence of the gallery. I usually try to book everything out at least eight months in advanced. So i'm constantly talking to the artists. we'll get together, hang out do studio visits, I have to try to be there for them. A lot of galleries will be like, ok it's your show, show up, give me some work to sell. The intention of this place was to be a creative, artist driven process. Now it just happens that it's that functioning with in the model of a more professional contemporary art gallery. I try to work with the artists as much as possible, support them. I pay for travel shipping and framing, I don't make that much money here so a lot of that basically goes back into the gallery.

It seems like there is a lot of work, between the magazine and the gallery. Do you ever have play time?

It's all play, it's all enjoyable. I think the whole thing is an extinction of my artistic practice, it's kinda like a neo-conceptual practice. There's talk of how the business of art can be an artistic practice as well, if I didn't think about it in those terms and if I wasn't having fun I'd go crazy and not want to do it. I've definitely worked a lot of jobs in the past that were not fun at all and kinda eat away at your sole. So if I didn't enjoy this, I wouldn't be here. That not to get's hard but you know, it's really
rewarding. Last year I was also the interim director of the San Francisco Art Institute. In there public gallery space to, I quit recently because it was just a little bit to much.

With these two projects in hand have you been able to peruse more personal artist projects, I've seen some of your photography online?

I shoot for the magazine, sometimes. I started to contribute photography to Juxtapoz Magazine, which is great. It gives me a reason to pull out all of my old gear and make a good polished photograph. I had a show, recently at Eli Ridgway Gallery, Down Town. I did a salt water battery installation. So i've been moving away from photography to more conceptual based sculpture and curating different shows that combine historical and contemporary artists that are offsite from here as well. working with different artist and doing all of these silly projects as well.

Is there anything, in any of your projects that you are excited about?

Well, the programing at Evergold next year, I picked up a few new artist that have shown at bigger galleries. They are showing here because I believe in the original intension and original vision of there work so it's like, I allow there to be shows were the normally commercially driven galleries would kinda freak out. Like the Jacko Weyland show, there's nothing for sale. It's balance, but it's about putting up a good exhibition.