Saturday, May 28, 2011



Mark welcomes visitors to the art show



It seems to be weird to be interviewing him from Buenos Aires. Fortunately,we can count on the Internet. This is what he had to say, or better, answer to the questions that were sent to him.


So Mark, did the art show meet your expectations?

It certainly did. I tried not to go with expectations. The only one I had was to get feedback on my new body of art. I admit I also had an ecperience of myself, that I´d be able to present myself confidently and be myself.

How long has it been since your last exhibition?

It has actually been seven years since my last art show.

You made some interesting additions to the show which people have enjoyed immensely: the introduction of a performance piece and some cool dj music, both of which added a twist to the event.

Waxie most certainly added a twist by making the event untraditional and fun. I was given the opportunity to create the kind of show I wanted and having a performance piece was a dream. Waxie was an extension of not only my art but also who I am as a person.

You also exhibit the so-called "wire art". How is it shown to the public?

My partner suggested showing it covered by "cloches", that is bell-shaped glass covers that allow the pieces to be seen while protecting them at the same time.

Which changes have you experienced lately?

The biggest change was me and how I am as a person now and how I approach my art. Acquiring a studio has been one of the most important changes to help me focus.

Which do you consider your biggest change?

Welcoming guests to show. I am a much more confident person and artist and this helped me to create a successful show and feel a successful person and artist.

Has your art changed, too?

Regarding my art, it continues to have a thread of similarity to past work but has matured both in concept and technique. It has also been a new experience to be so involved with the hanging of my art in the frame shop where the show took place. I was challenged on the space, something which I also enjoyed.

How has the experience of this new show affected you?

It has definitely helped with what is happening now. I am inspired and energized and, though there are no clear answers yet, I already have a direction.

You have some pending plans regarding your graffiti art and the book you are writing and illustrating. Do you think the recent events have had an influence on these plans?

This experience hasn´t influenced my graffiti but hasn´t distracted me from continuing on this path. Regarding the book, I am feeling some pressure and concern that it will not get done. The children´s book is still very important to me and I plan to continue. I need to be better organized with my time and priorities and it is a challenge.

What are you currently engaged in?
I am interested in making my art known beyond the United States. I am currently formatting images into a special website calle "Call to Artists" that offers opportunities to artists locally, nationally and internationally.

What does the future hold?
I want to try some new ideas but first I want to digest all the wonderful feedback from the show. I have already come to some conclusions. I certainly want more exposure, and that is always the tricky part.

The Portraits


Mark by his portrait at the show


Earlier portraits

Three of the most recent portraits

The Sculptures

Human Sculpture
Paint and real butterfly

with Butterflies

Wire Art

Jellyfish Baby

Wire Art





Mark & Friends

Warm hugs from close friends

Some things require explanations ...

... no matter how tall friends are

Do I look like him?

Another friend next to
the most recent pieces

Mark & long-time friend Maureen

Some good laughs with Waxie Moon

Waxie is also a host

Waxie and Mark
A post-show pic

Kobalt Severa / DJ Transport
A post-show pic

Michael Hytinen, Mark´s partner
& friend

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Mark O´Connell showing Blind Man
Arts Walk, Capitol Hill
May 12th



Finally the day arrived for Mark O´Connell´s big art exhibition. The event was held at Arts Walk, a frame shop located in Capitol Hill, Seattle. It was a clever choice to have the show there. The place was specially prepared and provided a different atmosphere, perfect for the kind of art that Mark wanted to exhibit.

Today Mark remembers it as "an incredible and magical night, everything I was hoping for and more." He had worked hard for it to be a success but one never knows. He realised people were giving the thumbs up as he saw a steady group of people coming in all night. Not only the ones that had been formally invited, but also those walking in from the street. He also remembers that "some were fascinated, others shocked and all the in between." 

Mark had carefully planned each and every part of the show and counted on the participation of talented friends. The unique Seattle gender-bending performance artist Waxie Moon, who was at the art gallery shop window in a live appearance, sitting next to a portrait of his, painted by Mark, and a part of his recent production, and Kobalt Severa aka DJ Transport, who provided the show with the hippest, coolest music of his own production.


Waxie Moon 
The real one next to his portrait
by Mark O´Connell 


Detail of the portrait



This interview was made via the Internet by exchanging emails and these are the interesting replies to the questions sent to Waxie Moon while he was performing in Las Vegas, Nevada. Waxie not only spoke about his participation in this art show but also about his persona and future projects.

1. What are you currently doing in Las Vegas?
I am attending the Burlesque Hall of Fame 2011 weekend festival, where I will have the honor of performing and assisting burlesque legends/women in their 60´s, 70´s and 80´s in their performance, supporting my friends who are competing in the 2011 "Tournament of Tease", and reconnecting with my friends (members of the international burlesque community). It is a guaranteed good time.

2. Can you describe yourself as an artist? Where are you from and how long have you been a performer?
I have been performing since I was 9 years old. After countless years of tap and disco lessons throughout California, I began my formal dance training at the Interlochen Arts Academy and went on to receive my BFA from The Juilliard School. Upon graduating, I joined the Jose Limon Dance Company, with whom I danced leading roles worldwide, including tours to war-torn Sarajevo and El Salvador, and a performance at the White House for former President William Jefferson Clinton and First Lady Hilary Rodham Clinton. In 2004, I received his MFA in Acting from the Professional Actor Training Porgram (PATP) at the University of Washington and co-founded Seattle´s critically acclaimed Washington Ensemble Theatre. In 2006, I created the performance personae "Waxie Moon", a gender-bending queer lady "boylesque" performance-art solo stripping sensation. Since then, I have got to perform extensively as him/her/herm.

3. How did you get to know Mark O´Connell? Did you know his work before meeting him?
Mark was someone I always admired from afar. Through a mutual friend, we were finally introduced, and encouraged to collaborate on this project. Our first meeting was super exciting. I was absolutely floored by his paintings, and basically said "you can paint me however you´d like". I gladly submitted to being his "human canvas".

4. You must be made many business proposals. What made you give the thumbs up to this one?
Seeing his paintings. They are gorgeous! I was also interested in expanding what I do as a performer, and Mark´s "human canvas" idea sounded fresh, fun and entertaining.

5. The idea of working in the shop window in the company of your portrait and interacting with the visitors to the exhibition was great. How did you guys decide on this?
I´m not sure if the idea originated with Mark, Dennis Turner (the gallery owner) or myself. It was a kind of collective-agreed-upon magic. Great minds think alike.

6. Can you describe your experience in the show and how you felt about this integration of art, music and performance?
I really enjoyed myself. Being installed in the window felt relaxing and quietly entertaining. Ultimately people were there to see Mark´s paintings. I felt like an added surprise. Also, Kobalt´s soundscape gave the event a festive vibe. The event was entertaining and artful, without feeling overly precious.

7. Would you like to work with Mark again in the future? Perhaps an integrated show with Mark and Kobalt?

8. What is your next show/performance?
I am taking the summer off to regroup and begin contemplating some new, long term, ambitious projects. Recently, I co-wrote and starred in "Waxie Moon in Fallen Jewell", a feature-length fictional film (directed by Wes Hurley). It is a high-larious burlesque musical that is now in postproduction. Keep your eye out for it!

9. There are several videos in You Tube but it would be interesting to find your work and photos in a site. Where can people and fans find info about your career and venues?
Thanks for asking. The best way to know about all things related to "Waxie Moon" is to "like" my Facebook page: .



DJ Transport

 DJ Transport  doing his set

THE DJ SET by DJ Transport

The interview to Kobalt Severa or DJ Transport was held thanks to our friends from Facebook.  Here is what he had to say about the unusual music of an unusual evening.

1. Kobalt, you were the DJ in the show but you are also a close friend of Mark´s.
Yes, Mark and I have known each other for about ten years now.

2. What did Mark specifically want for the art show in terms of music?
He didn´t want music too dancy and he was particularly interested in some World music sounds along with some tracks with an Indian/Bali sound.

3. What was the process of preparing the set like?
I worked on putting the mix together for about a week,having gathered about 9 hours of music, and then whittling it down to about 5 hours of music.

4. Which styles did you choose?
My music selection was mostly Down Tempo, Chill, Lounge, and House, with hints of pop, although the pop music that I play is usually heavily remixed.

5. How did you display your music once you were at the art show?
Once I had all the tracks selected that I wanted to play, I just sort of went by the mood of the show, as to what I would play. Starting off with a slow tempo and gradually building the beats as the night went on.

6. And how long did the fun last?
I started my set about 5.45 pm and ended around 10pm. It was a fun night!

This is one of the pics that DJ Transport chose for the evening set.

Richard Cheese
Ice Ice Baby

You can also go to soundcloud and find his interesting music. Here´s one of his links: