The Campanions

All of these things are not like the others

At a glance, one is hard pressed to find a through line, a cohesion between the various pieces and expansive list of artists that contributed to the “Campanions” show at the Seeing Things Gallery in San Jose. Each collection of pieces differed completely from the next and were displayed in a way that highlighted the contrast between them.

“I left the prompt pretty open ended,” says Kayvon Siadat, show curator and organizer. “Some of the artists were initially frustrated by how loose I was with the concept for the show. Others were pretty excited. All in all, I think the results were great and very surprising, in some cases.”

Siadat wasn’t just vague about the concept, he also left the medium up to the artists. The resulting collection is as eclectic as it is impressive. Mixed media, oil, acrylic, spray paint, miniature, etc., are all represented in some way and, considering that there were no more than 50 pieces, one starts to get a sense of how truly diverse this show was.

Most of the pieces did have something in common. Almost all of them were sold opening night and all would surely be gone by the end of the weekend. “It was important to me to give people a chance to own some amazing pieces from some phenomenal artists. Art is a tough world to break into and people are usually priced out of ownership right off the bat. I wanted to make sure that the pieces were affordable enough that people could get started without having to fork out thousands,” says Siadat, who commissioned all of the pieces specifically for the show. “They’re new, they’re original, they’re beautiful and you can actually afford to go home with a piece or a collection. I wanted to prove that you didn’t have to be rich to appreciate art.”

And a quick scan of the wall told the story. Every single piece was adorned by a small, red pin just below it representing that it had been sold. To say that the “Companions” show is a success would be a woeful understatement. An ensemble show in which 90% of the pieces sold within the first hour is simply unheard of and proves art and indeed art appreciation, is alive and well in San Jose.

For more information on the show, go to: Seeing Things Gallery.

30 N. Third Street
San Jose, CA 95112

Tues-Fri 12-6, Sat 12-5 (closed Sunday and Monday) and by appointment.

Kayvon Siadat is a DJ at KSCU. His show “The Modern things” Can be heard Fridays from 12-2PM on 103.3.

Words and images by Lam Nguyen

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