Grit and Glam: The World According to Adina Doria

29 Apr




Los Angeles-based photographer Adina Doria


It’s been said that California is for Dreamers. It most certainly is and I am no exception. Nothing thrills me more than donning false eyelashes, spackling on the glitter and declaring myself a “Comet Rider”. Conversely, I often catch myself waxing poetic for times that pre-date my birth. This bizarre juxtaposition of humanism is precisely why I revel in the work of acclaimed Los Angeles-based photographer, Adina Doria.




With one foot hinging on the 1970s punk scene of New York’s Lower East Side and the other delving into candy-colored futuristic realms, Doria’s recent work reflects a position of nostalgia and earthly rebellion. Her photographs create a visually explosive environment; an ambiance that reflects both grit and glamour, providing an experience that is simultaneously alarming and liberating.




Doria’s photographs are intense. Yet her work is not raw or brute. Through the lens of her camera, Doria presents psychologically charged subjects whose emotional states teeter between despair and redemption. Bridging the gap between commercial and fine art photography, Doria elegantly and honestly examines the capacity for being human in an age where anything is seemingly attainable and everything is for sale.




Young for her wise years and already firmly established in her industry, we have much to look forward to from Adina Doria. Word has it she innovated a technique that will take fashion photography in an important and unanticipated direction. Pay close attention!







Spirits Made Manifest in the Peruvian Jungle

22 Oct

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor.


                                                                                                                        Mark Twain



Throw off the bowlines, indeed! Instead of participating in the “safe harbor” of an art fair honoring the Fall Arts Kickoff, I went south….as in southern hemisphere south. The opportunity to embark on a spiritual journey of healing, creativity and deep appreciation with the Shipibo artisans of Peru was exactly the kickoff we at Blythe Projects seek and support.


Thanks to a stray dog on the runway, our delayed flight from Lima into Pucallpa provided us with humbling and, for this LA woman, strange aerial views. Debarking the plane into the rich humid haze of the Amazon, I reconvened with my two travel companions for the week. With our tents strapped to our backpacks strapped to our backs, we hailed a moto-carriage and headed toward the banks of the Ucayali River. Crowded with merchants, children, piles of lumber and bananas, single engine tuk-tuks and the sounds of Spanish mixing with the native language of Shipibo, the Ucayali is a major tributary of the mighty Amazon…the life force of the Shipibo people. Thanks to engine failure, our delayed tuk-tuk trip afforded us the opportunity to steep in the power of the Amazon; including a glimpse of the magical and rare pink Amazonian river dolphin. As our hearts opened and our souls called out for more–our journey was well underway.


After a tricky climb up the bank and a 20-minute walk through the jungle, we arrived at the village of Santa Isabella teeming with curious children, chickens and roosters, and warm hospitality. Celebrating both art and spirituality, I was excited to meet with the renowned Shipibo artisans.


The women carry out all the textile painting, embroidery and beading and are initiated into the sacred craft at a very young age. To the contemporary art fan, these intricate and complex geometric patterns may resemble a Peter Halley gone wild. For the Shipibo, these patterns are an expression of interconnected-ness, the one-ness of all creation and the union of perceived opposites. They are an ongoing dialogue with the spiritual world and the sprits of the rainforest and extend far beyond the edges of the fabric. They permeate the entire world.


The key element in these one-of-a-kind designs is the Shipibo shamans’ healing work with plant medicines and icaros (chants). Easing into a deep primal trace, the Shipibo can hear an icaro by looking at a design and paint a design by listening to an icaro. These designs are visual music and harmony made manifest…designed to balance the mind, body and spirit.


From Pythagoras and Plato right on through the Renaissance, art and music were believed to heal the body and elevate the soul. I still believe. Perched off LA’s Sunset Strip, the place I call home, I close my eyes and remember that I, too, beat to the ancient rhythms of the cosmos. We all do. 

Spiritual Composting for the Fall Arts Kick-Off

10 Sep

I loved the idea of blogging. I have a big heart, big emotions, big visions — and I love connecting with bright, bold, bubbly souls like you. My first post was a blast to put together…a recap of the wild ride that was 2011. And then…2012 spring art fair season roared into high speed. After three art fairs back to back (VOLTA New York – Art Dubai – Dallas Art Fair)…I just didn’t give a damn. It wasn’t the long hours of show-ponying around a 12 x 20 foot booth in 4 inch heels. It wasn’t the ol’ ‘it’s the economy’ line, or the inescapable ‘20% collector discount’. It wasn’t the silver hair encroaching fast upon my dark locks. Really, I just didn’t give a damn. I have never in all my 36 years not given a damn. I always give a damn. I was devastated.

Was I tanking my Business? Was I tanking as a Woman? Was I tanking Life?

After giving up my brick & mortar gallery space…what was I? Certainly not a gallerist. A gallerist has a proper space with at least 4 pristine white walls and Vueve in the fridge. “There is a better way”…yanked on my heartstrings. After wondering if I should take the ‘Ab Lab’ at my gym 5 days a week and be a high end escort for luscious weekends in Las Vegas to float a brick & mortar…I hit the floor and instead of cowgirl-ing up like usual, I just laid there bleeding for awhile.

Then, I hit up my shaman in Topanga. I was experiencing a spiritual crisis that Louboutins and high-end detox spas couldn’t touch. Not a career crisis, or a ‘should I freeze my eggs’ crisis or an identity crisis. A full-on-fire-and-brimstone-in-every-thread-of-my-being spiritual crisis.

So, after a summer immersed in the World of the Spirit…I, once again, give a damn. On a higher level than ever before, I am reveling in Love, Freedom, Art and Expression, Rock & Roll and Spirit, You and Me.

I found out that there weren’t too many limitations, if I did it my way – Johnny Cash

Blythe Projects is undergoing a revamp. We have always been jet-set cowgirls and boys who believe in magic and follow the fireflies. But, now…instead of you coming to us, we are coming to you. We set up camp where it makes sense…and where it makes no practical sense at all (which often wind up being our most successful endeavors!).

I look forward to seeing you along the lovely, lively road…complete with cocktails and ceremony. Come revel with us in blog-time and live-time!

Bright wishes,


Every Picture Tells a Story Don’t It…

30 Dec

2011 was a bright, bold year for Blythe Projects…one that has rocketed me to new levels of awe. Speaking on behalf of myself and the gallery artists, this year has encouraged us to both sharpen our teeth and soften our hearts. Before we kick off the new year with a new blog, I want to take a trip back through my favorite carnival ride to date…the 2011 Blythe Projects exhibition calendar and art fair circuit.

Michael Salvatore Tierney – AEROSPACE – January / February 2011

 'Durand Durand', 2010












PULSE NEW YORK – March 2011 – Mark Schoening Solo Presentation

Somewhere Out There, 2011











Dias Sardenberg – HOLIDAYS IN AN AMERICAN DESERT – March / April 2011

'Holidays in an American Desert', 2008-2010 











Meeson Pae Yang – PERMEATE – May / June 2011

'Exponential', 2011









NEXT CHICAGO – April 2011 – featuring Michael Salvatore Tierney

'LA County Health Building', 2008









artMRKT SAN FRANCISCO – May 2011 – featuring Tm Gratkowski

'CDX015', 2011












Troy Morgan – BENEATH THE SEA – July / August 2011

'Beneath the Sea (Aquarium 2)', 2011








PULSE LOS ANGELES – September 2011 – featuring Larry Mullins

'She's Banged Up', 2010 - 2011












FOUNTAIN ART FAIR LOS ANGELES – September 2011 – Ben White Solo Presentation

'Pat Robertson', 2010












Tm Gratkowski – WHITE OUT – September / October 2011

'Deflated Materialism', 2011










Siri Kaur – KNOW ME FOR THE FIRST TIME – November / December 2011

'Snowy Look Away', 2011










PULSE MIAMI – December 2011 – featuring James Clar

'Boom', 2011








Thank you from the bottom of my beat-beat heart to the artists, collectors, writers and curators who collaborated with Blythe Projects in 2011. You…along with a steady dose of rock & roll (thanks, Rod, for inspiring the title of this piece)…made the year shine!











Rock on…Shine on…Happy New Year!

Hillary Metz | Blythe Projects