Tuesday, May 26, 2015

PAUL BOOKER


Blue Current, 2015, ink, oil enamel & polyurethane on panel,72 x 48 inches.

ModernDallas.net repost


Most of us have flipped through a science textbook and stopped on a page with a complex image illustrating an object or concept. Usually these images are pretty simple, but a few books will have an energetic, ambitious illustrator that will create a complex design that puts you in a state of wonder. A really dynamic illustration of a cell helps explain and inspire future scientists. Although Paul Booker isn’t closely portraying scientific phenomenon, you get the feeling his imaginative images of flowing systems could easily inspire someone to become a scientist, meteorologist, or an engineer of fluid dynamics. Even someone to become an artist, after all, seeing his work back in his Dunn and Brown show encourages my own development as an artist.

Paul Booker is now showing with Cris Worley Fine Arts in a solo show titled Flow Through. A show of little particles flowing all over his image. His blog points to his interest in extreme weather patterns, sound waves, and the not so empty space of the cosmos. All of which fell relevant to many of his works. Pink Current is an ink enamel and polyurethane on panel painting which depicts little black and also little white particles flowing around, leading your eye all over the panel. His method of applying 100 or so layers of polyurethane to the work makes the image seem dimensional. Booker manages to get his flowing objects not to act as drawings on a flat surface giving the illusion of space, but rather drawings on several layers. So, the drawings are on lower layers and upper layers, thus these paintings are not really flat. I know what you must be thinking, I just called them paintings, then drawings, then paintings again. Well, I am not afraid to say I am unclear what to call them, because Booker seems to be creating both. I first encountered his method of painting years ago when I visited Dunn and Brown, but before then I saw Booker drawing on the wall with sculpture at 500x. He had drawn on small clear sheets, and then pinned them to the wall. With all those pinned sheets, Booker made the pieces flow across the wall. His paintings, though contained within a rectangle, still accomplish a similar experience.

Paul Booker is now showing with Cris Worley Fine Arts in a solo show titled Flow Through. A show of little particles flowing all over his image. His blog points to his interest in extreme weather patterns, sound waves, and the not so empty space of the cosmos. All of which fell relevant to many of his works. Pink Current is an ink enamel and polyurethane on panel painting which depicts little black and also little white particles flowing around, leading your eye all over the panel. His method of applying 100 or so layers of polyurethane to the work makes the image seem dimensional. Booker manages to get his flowing objects not to act as drawings on a flat surface giving the illusion of space, but rather drawings on several layers. So, the drawings are on lower layers and upper layers, thus these paintings are not really flat. I know what you must be thinking, I just called them paintings, then drawings, then paintings again. Well, I am not afraid to say I am unclear what to call them, because Booker seems to be creating both. I first encountered his method of painting years ago when I visited Dunn and Brown, but before then I saw Booker drawing on the wall with sculpture at 500x. He had drawn on small clear sheets, and then pinned them to the wall. With all those pinned sheets, Booker made the pieces flow across the wall. His paintings, though contained within a rectangle, still accomplish a similar experience.

Pink Current, 2014, ink, oil enamel & polyurethane on panel, 24 x 48 inches. Ridges – Yellow and Green is a watercolor and ink on paper. A watercolor done in Booker’s style refreshes the medium for me. Traditionally watercolor is used as a sketch for a larger work on board or canvas. Only a few masters at watercolor helped to raise its profile now and then. Booker’s watercolor is as solid as any painting or sculpture he has done. It looks to me Booker was fearless in his execution of this often overlooked medium. The title suggested that water was there and dried up, leaving ridges. Well that is true both symbolically and literally. Water did dry to make this image. Flow Through is a title of another watercolor that captivated my attention with the drama and energy of his lines.

Flow Through with works by Paul Booker continues until May 9th at Cris Worley Fine Arts.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Holly Johnson Gallery : Contain Me : Ink Drawings by Todd Camplin


Holly Johnson Gallery is pleased to present, Contain Me: Ink Drawings by Todd Camplin. A reception will be held Saturday, May 16, from 6 to 8 p.m. Contain Me, the artist's second solo show with the gallery, features fourteen new works and continues through July 18.

Todd Camplin has been abstracting text into detailed ink drawings for nearly a decade. Often taking months to complete individual works this painstaking process involves the repetition of small words, letters and marks evocative of highly detailed maps and textiles.

Camplin recently came across his old package design text books from his time as an undergraduate in graphic design and was inspired to create works for this exhibition. He focused on several different approaches with the idea of abstracted text and containment that includes: box designs, filling the paper, and dropping the box out of the design.

Camplin explains, "This communicates the idea of how we create frameworks for our writing in order to make coherent compositions. The box is a kind of device that holds the text like a piece of line paper holds a short essay. The works without the boxes are more like stream of consciousness writings and the filled drawings repeat like a long iambic pentameter poem."

Todd Camplin was born in 1973 in South Bend, Indiana. In 1998 he earned a B.F.A. from Western Kentucky University. In 2006 he received an M.A. in Arts and Humanities from the University of Texas at Dallas. In the spring of 2010, he received an M.F.A. from the University of North Texas in Denton. He currently resides in Jefferson, Texas.

Holly Johnson Gallery is located at 1845 Levee Street #100 in the Dallas Design District. Gallery hours are 11:00 to 5:00, Tuesday through Saturday. For information please call 214-369-0169, email info@hollyjohnsongallery.com, or visit www.hollyjohnsongallery.com.

Holly Johnson Gallery
Contain Me
Ink Drawings by Todd Camplin
May 16 - July 18, 2015



Handbag PS272, 2014 ink on paper, 30 x 22 inches

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Cole Art Center

At the Cole Art Center in Nacogdoches Texas. Texas National and a show about the Chinese contribution to building United States.



Friday, May 08, 2015

Contain Me

Black and Blue Words

2014, Ink on claybord, 30 x 30
Hunting Prize Finalist 2015

Contain Me is a solo exhibition of recent drawings by Todd Camplin at Holly Johnson Gallery. Opening reception is on May 16th. Link at CADD and the gallery site for more information.


Several years back, I came across some of my old package design books. I looked though these books with fond memories of my times as an undergraduate in graphic design. I began testing the idea in a few small sketches, but I put it aside for a while. Recently, I picked these books back up and began placing them as my center piece to my drawings. I use my text elements to flow in and out of the package designs. The flat foldouts of these packages contained my drawings. After several drawings with box designs, I dropped the box element for just my text shapes. I expanded my technique from paper to claybord. Then I came to the conclusion that I should attempt to completely fill the page with my designs. I once again tested my process and then I created several filled drawings that were fully contained on the paper. Each drawing concept lead to another concept and all spawned from my package design templates.

My work abstracts text into ink drawings on paper or claybord. I have combined my text with the idea of containment.  These three different composition styles include: box designs, filling the paper, and dropping the box out of the design. This communicates the idea of how we create frameworks for our writing in order to make coherent composition. The box is a kind of device that holds the text like a piece of line paper holds a short essay. The work without boxes are more like stream of consciousness writings. The filled drawings repeat like a long iambic pentameter poem.


Holly Johnson Gallery
1845 Levee Street #100
Dallas, TX 75207
214.369.0169

CHUCK + GEORGE


ModernDallas.net re-post of my article

Texas has a few playfully absurd duo artists. The Art Guys from Houston come to mind with their showy performances. Another duo is Chuck and George which has taken Dallas by storm with two exhibitions going on at two art institutions; the McKinney Avenue Contemporary and UTD's artist-in-residence space CentralTrak. Chuck and George are the art personas of Brian K Jones and Brian K Scott. These two artists work individually, but also as a collaborative entity.

The Chuck and George alter egos work is similar to their own works, but the scale and imaginative installations increase tenfold when they collaborate. I remember the very odd show at Conduit Gallery’s project room where Chuck and George turned the space into a nightmarishly cartoony living room. I was reminded a bit of cartoons like Ren and Stimpy or Spongbob. I thought maybe I was looking into a Tex Avery inspired, grotesque cabaret set piece. No doubt that style is expressed on a larger scale at CentralTrak. Chuck and George spread out their works along the walls while accenting the work with decoratively loud elements.

Much of the work reminds me of folk art, but twisted and pulled to the limits of what folk art generally portrays. A kind of Waxahachie, Webb Gallery show gone mad. If you want an overview of Chuck and George’s work over the past 25 years, then this will whet your appetite. Although I get the feeling that it would have been better to see much of the work when it was originally shown, because you would get the context Chuck and George created with their work, which would help create a more consistent message. Of course, the show is a tribute to the Chuck and George from other artists, so the show will look a bit inconsistent from all those voices. Though I did see a theme running through the show. Several of the works celebrated their partnership through depicting portraits of themselves. But be warned, it can be a bit risqué for the faint at heart. I however, was not afraid.

McKinney Avenue Contemporary show titled Magnetron Parfait - Chuck and George CentralTrak was something old, but if you want something new and something in a blue building, you will have to go midtown to the McKinney Avenue Contemporary. The MAC’s show is a more coherent Chuck and George installation of post-Pop Pop. After all, how can I not think of popcorn when looking at microwaves? Objects rotate inside simulated microwaves, while lit with a variety of colored lights. A giant Claes Oldenburg style plug is on the wall. Small bags of products were on one wall, like a store display. Garish wallpaper adorned a wall as well. The MAC show is really quite fun, very goofy, and to be honest not my normal taste in art, but their commitment to ambitious installations is infectious. I admit I was repelled by their work at first, but gradually I have come around to considering their vision of the world.

The McKinney Avenue Contemporary show titled Magnetron Parfait…Beware! will continue to entertain through May 9th. The MAC also has their artists talk on April 29th from 6PM to 9PM. CentralTrek will be showing Who's Afraid of Chuck and George which will run through June 13th.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

FAMILY TIES BROOKLYN/DALLAS



ModernDallas.net re-post of my article.

It is rare that I mention a show in which I also happen to be participating, but in this case, I don’t feel so bad, because so many other artists are showing with me. I am writing about the Family Ties Brooklyn/ Dallas show at 500x. The concept and curation was cooked up by Brooklyn based painter Julie Torres and Dallas artist Bonny Leibowitz. The number of artists is a staggering 120 individuals. Because the wall space of 500x is rather large, I imagine the show will not be too similar to the classic RO2’s Chaos exhibition. And because it is curated, this should be more focused than a MAC member show. Still it will be a lot of work and much like the Hunting Art Prize, only one art piece will represent the artist.

Conceptually the show should be an interesting dialog with New York artists and the artists that show in Dallas. I think borders were not particularly strict when it comes to defining a Dallas or Brooklyn artist, but a wide net opens up a broader conversation. I also think this type of show is perfect for the weekend of the Dallas Art Fair, because at an art fair, you are bombarded with image after image which are tied to separate booths and generally no real themes. Family Ties is attempting to tie two communities together, but still adding to the mass amount of art on display this weekend. Family Ties is not competing with the fair, but rather complimenting by giving an alternative voice. It could be interesting to see partnerships like this re-occuring on an annual or biennial basis. William Eckhardt Kohler - Late Light 2014 oil on linen, 20 x 16 inches

I would like to shine a light on a few of the artists that will have work in the show. Ann Glazer is a local who had a strong show of cut-out abstract works at the MAC a while back. Her gesture drawings have quite a bit of energy, so I look forward to seeing her piece. Out of Brooklyn, I see Austin Thomas as potentially having a stand-out piece. I like the drawings I saw from her website. I just hope the work represents well. David T. Miller’s paintings reminded me of Julon Pinkston’s paintings, who is also in the show, but T. Miller’s work is a little less wild with the application of paint. Maybe Susan Carr is a better comparison to Pinkston. Thick paint just drips off both of their works. Douglas Florian and Ben Pritchard use repetition to maximize the viewer’s experience with their use of lines and shapes. I relate well to their rhythmic images. Ryan Goolsby - Untitled, 2015 wood paint, 8 x 24 x 12 inches

Family Ties opens at 500x on April 11th, Saturday. The complete list of artists include: Albert Weaver, Alex Paik, Alexis Granwell, Ann Glazer, Anne Russinof, Ashley Garrett, Austin Thomas, Bailey K Chapman, Becky Yazdan, Ben Pritchard, Ben Terry, Bonny Leibowitz, Brett Dyer, Brian Edmonds, Caetlynn Booth, Cande Aguilar, Cecilia Salama, Chance Dunlap, Christina Tenaglia, Christopher Moss, Christopher Rose, Claudia Tienan, Daniel John Gadd, David Michael Connolly, David T. Miller, Deanna Wood, Douglas Florian, Elizabeth Gourlay, Elizabeth Riley, Ellen Letcher, Emily Berger, Enrico Gomez, Eric Mavko, Erica Stevens, Fran Holstrom, Fred Gutzeit, Georgia Elrod, Ginny Casey, Giovanni Valderas, Gwendolyn Plunkett, James Prez, Jamie Powell, Jason Rohlf, Julon Pinkston, Jay Henderson, Jeanne Neal, Jeff Parrott, Jennifer Shepard, Jenny Leigh Jones, Jill Vasileff, Joan Mellon, John Kesling, Jonathan Cowan, Julia L Trinh, Julia Schwartz, Julie Alexander, Julie S. Graham, Karen Schifano, Karl Bielik, Karla Areli, Katherine Mojzsis, Kevin Andrew Curran, Ky Anderson, Kyle Gallup, Lael Marshall, Lauren Collings, Leeza Meksin, Leslie Kerby, Liz Ainslie, Liz Atzberger, MaDora Frey, Maria Britton, Marian Brunn Smith, Mary Judge, Matthew Neil Gehring, Maxwell Stevens, Mayra Barraza, Meg Atkinson, Melissa Capasso, Melissa Staiger, Michael Frank Blair, Nancy Ferro, Paul Behnke, Peggy Epner, Phillip J. Mellen, Polly Shindler, Rachael Gorchov, RE Cox, Rebecca Litt, Rebecca Murtaugh, Roberto Munguia, Ryan Goolsby, Ryan Michael Ford, Sally Warren, Sean Montgomery, Stephen B. MacInnis, Suhee Wooh, Susan Carr, Susan Cheal, Teresa Ekasala, Todd Camplin, Vicki Owen, Vicki Sher, Wendy Klemperer, Will Hutnick, William Crump, William Eckhardt Kohler, William Lawler, and Zak Vreeland

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

HOW CAN YOU TAKE THE TEMPERATURE OF YOUR ART SCENE?


ModernDallas.net re-post of my article.

I find one good way is checking out other cities close by and compare the work at the galleries and museums. So, I visited Houston to see how Dallas is doing.

Houston, like Dallas, has scattered art galleries with a few concentrations, so driving all day to see a lot of work is a must. I started my gallery search in the Upper Kirby area. Particularly around the Collquitt Inset. Galleries like McMurtrey, Moody, and d.m. allison are clustered together with several other art spaces. Couched inside McMurtrey Gallery is Hello Project Gallery which has a show of glitch inspired art by Michelle Rawlings. Her paintings are something that seems familiar to Dallas gallery goers, but a little more raw, less refined, and less slick. CentralTrak would be a perfect place for Rawlings to show this work. Her collection of pigment prints on silk look like digital image files corrupted and unreadable. Much of her eye catching work played with this motif. Moody Gallery is showing Michael Bise’s awkwardly drawing figures with some enjoyably off putting images. I made a quick pass over the show, then stopped and thought I saw a fully dressed young woman and a nude ambiguously aged teen drinking coffee casually as the woman looks out at the viewer. Bise’s drawing also had the quality of being less polished and more raw than much of the Dallas scene.

McNeil is currently up at Anya Tish Gallery. If that name sounds familiar, then you’ve likely seen her work at Conduit Gallery. This show of her work was a little more bold with her colors and I don’t recall seeing so many of her works on paper in one exhibition. McClain Gallery is featuring the flowing abstract line, egg tempera paintings of Mara Held. As a lover of detail type art, I was not disappointed in this New York City artist’s offering.

Another cluster of galleries are on Main Street, just north of the Lawndale Art Center. The art center is somewhat like the MAC, minus the theater. The cluster includes galleries like the Inman, Art Palace, and Devin Borden Gallery. I come over to these galleries to get charged and sometimes surprised by the art. Inman Gallery had some playfully simple mono screenprints by Brad Tucker. These were bright colored minimalist pieces in the familiar shapes of his sculptures. I was thrilled to see the last day of Raychael Stine’s animal paintings. I have fallen in, then out, then in love with her paintings. She keeps me off balance, I have never been quite sure what to think of her abstract marks with her depictions of dachshunds along with other animals she obsessively paints. This time she has added some collage elements to many of the paintings which punch up the works a bit. I guess we need to have another Road-Agent Gallery or Marty Walker type gallery to show Stine in Dallas again.

Finally I went north to see the ever wild G Gallery, the blue chip Texas Gallery and the up and coming space Avis Frank Gallery. Texas Gallery had a bunch of Jeremy Deprez paintings/sculptures all with the label, Untitled (MMMMMMMMMMM). I must admit they did look delicious, though I resisted biting the works. Dylan Conner’s sculptures at Avis Frank Gallery felt nautically inspired. I was drawn by his gift shop concept. It was a way to sell art, have a little fun with it, yet not be flippant towards other crafts. I think this concept is a good approach and reminds me of when Red Arrow had a store, or Public Trusts’ store. This is a good way keep a budding gallery open and growing.

Dallas might be a very different commercial art scene, but some of the same artists cross over, a few galleries in Houston partner with Dallas galleries, and both scenes draw from local/ international artist talent. I came away feeling that Dallas could add a gallery or two that tried more risky and raw work. But over all, I am optimistic with Dallas’ present programs in the commercial spaces.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

DAVID SALLE + ANILA QUAYYUM AGHA and NATE LOWMAN


David Salle Pink Field, 2013. Courtesy of the artist and Skarstedt, NY.
Art copyright David Salle, liscensed by VAGA, NY

ModernDallas.net repost of my article.

After the last dumpster it filled with the remains of Loris Gréaud’s show at the Dallas Contemporary, there will be room for something we can look forward to seeing. That is, of course, the works by David Salle and Anila Quayyum Agha.

David Salle was one of the first artists I identified with when I became aware of the greater art world. On more than one painting I attempted to copy his style before looking for my own voice. I came across his work in a contemporary art class as an undergraduate and then I continued to research and look for his work in museums and gallery exhibitions. Unfortunately for me I have see very little in person by Salle, so i am extremely excited that the Dallas Contemporary has shown the wisdom to bring him to us. On April 9th, Thursday, he is going to be here to give a talk and I am seriously thinking of skipping my day job just to go hear him. David Salle’s paintings remix most of the late 20th century art into single art pieces. For Salle, originality is a myth and one can only reshuffle the iconic artists’ styles and pay homage to their images. Thus he creates something new with his montage paintings. I can imagine Salle thinking about Alex Katz when painting some of his washed out portraits of women. Paintings of bodies pressed to canvas are clear references to Franz Kline. His abstract areas reference much of the development of artists working like Jackson Pollack. However, these easy references are not completely copied but stylized from the source. Much like the Baroque artists looked to the Renaissance artists for style and form, Salle looks to late Modern for his. So does just about every other artist these days, at least Salle is deadpan straightforward about his use of the recent past.

Anila Quayyum Agha is another great catch for the Dallas Contemporary. She was the first artist to win both prizes of the Artprize out of Grand Rapids, Michigan. And for good reason, that piece, titled Intersection, is simply amazing and I can’t wait to see it installed at DC. Intersection is the type of work that makes a room not just a room but an experience. Anila Quayyum Agha is originally from Pakistan so some of the geometric iconography from Islamic culture runs through this work. A light emanated from the center and the shadow of the patterns reflect on the wall. I hope the DC will have a few of her drawings and paintings as well.

I failed to mention that Nate Lowman will also be showing, but I am deeply skeptical that his work will inspire anything but more of the same shallow market art that is so prevalent at art fairs nowadays. Lowman’s reloaded Pop has been historically soulless and his use of irony is pretty weak. Yet, I could be pleasantly surprised, so I will cross my fingers and hope Lowman has something thoughtful and interesting to offer for Dallas. This group of three artists will show at the Dallas Contemporary starting on April 9th and run through August 23rd.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

OUT + ABOUT IN THE MUSEUMS



Sadamasa Motonaga, Red and Yellow, 1963, oil, synthetic resin, and gravel on canvas

ModernDallas.net re-post of my article.

It is a good time to think outside the commercial spaces and hit the art museums around Dallas. The art district is having a spring block party on the 20th of May, so the Nasher will be free, along with the DMA and Crow Collection which are already free. The theme for the night is Jane Austen, so hopefully some people will be out in their best victorian outfits.

Another theme you might notice in the Dallas Museum of Art is abstract painting. Frank Bowling’s map paintings marry the ironic structures that Jasper Johns explored in this flag painting and the expansive colorfield painters of the 1950’s and 60’s. Bowling was part of that zeitgeist of transitioning from abstraction to irony. Though not represented in the show, his early works look similar Neo Expressionists of the 1980’s, only Bowling predated them by thirty years. Also, his later work moves into complete abstraction around the end of the 1970’s, which was a surprise to me, because so many others of that era took such a different path after they had a taste of irony. Bowling’s map paintings were the trend, but then he bucked the trend to seek his own path.

The DMA also has action or colorfield abstract painters from Japan making these works in the 1980’s - the early 2000’s. I say action painting because Kazuo Shiraga picked up where Jackson Pollack and his band of friends left off. Only now performance was part of the game, so in and out of the studio his work was created by smearing and splashing paint to create the happy accidents of the paint dance. The canvas is only a recording device of his actions and choices. Sadamasa Motonaga’s colorfield works have the benefit of being informed by Pop art, so his work is much more playful than the serious New York School. Stories or a narrative structure seem to creep into the works which make his abstract paintings more accessible and even endearing to my children.

Traveling over to the Nasher Sculpture Garden, you will find one of this years important shows not to miss. Phyllida Barlow has looked at the museum and thought about how her work can interact with the space. I urge you to take a long hard look at her abstract sculptures. UT Dallas recognized back in 2003 that her work was not thrown together. I remember back then some of the dismissive remarks about her work from some students, but clearly Barlow has been on to something. I too was unsure of her work, but I can see a clearer picture here at Nasher. I just wish I could flesh it out and define it.

If you find yourself leaving the Arts District going south, head over to the Meadows Museum for one of our Texas natives who moved away and made good, John Alexander. His paintings are not abstract but rather about the East Texas bayous or the people destroying nature. Alexander’s two bodies of work he does at the same time are like pure dichotomies of one another. One being the natural beauty from his memories of his swamp and the other being masked people destroying the world for petty reasons. Life with and without people is how Alexander deals with the world. Nature wears no masks, while people must change everything, even their own identity.

The DMA will host works by Kazuo Shiraga and Sadamasa Motonaga through July 19 and Frank Bowling to August 2. Phyllida Barlow will be at the Nasher until August 30th. The Meadows Museum runs John Alexander’s show through June 28.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Karen Schifano, Karl Bielik, Karla Areli, Katherine Mojzsis

Where can you see a great quantity of abstract art on display in one place, 500x of course. Here are four more artists in the Family Ties show and links to their sites. Karen Schifano, Karl Bielik, Karla Areli, and Katherine Mojzsis.




Karen Schifano

Katherine Mojzsis




Karla Areli





Karl Bielik

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Joan Mellon, John Kesling, Jonathan Cowan, Julia L Trinh, Julia Schwartz, Julie Alexander, Julie S. Graham

Joan Mellon, John Kesling, Jonathan Cowan, Julia L Trinh, Julia Schwartz, Julie Alexander, and Julie S. Graham are some of the artists in the 500X show, upstairs. The show is coming down soon, so I am trying to show as many artist from the show as I can. Three at a time was not enough, then four at a time was still not enough. I guess I should have uses a little simple math to get the perfect number to show at a time. None the less, here are 7 more artists you to visit their sites and see a sample of their work.

 Joan Mellon
 Jonathan Cowan
  Julia L Trinh

  Julie Alexander
Julia Schwartz

Julie S. Graham