Friday, September 23, 2016

Links of Friends

Art, Artists, and Galleries Blog http://camplinart.blogspot.com/ A blog about art, including my own, artists, and art galleries.

Holly Johnson Gallery http://www.hollyjohnsongallery.com/html/artistresults.asp... Holly Johnson Gallery was founded in 2005 in Dallas Design District and repre...

ModernDallas.net http://www.moderndallas.net/ For the three years I have written critical reviews of the art in the DFW are...

Moses Hoskins http://www.moseshoskins.com.s1790.gridserver.com/Site/HOM... Moses Hoskins was born in 1953 in Iowa where he spent his youth and some time...

David Sequeira http://www.davidsequeira.com/  DAVID SEQUEIRA is a visual artist, art/business consultant and freelance muse... Sara Ishii http://saraishii.blogspot.com/ Sara Ishii is an American artist living and working in Toronto, Ontario. Her ...

Christi Nielsen http://christinielsen.com/

Bernardo Cantu http://bernardocantu.com/home.html he mines the dual tensions and harmonies of brute and elegant, baroque and mi...

Mariko Frost http://www.marikofrost.com/marikofrost.com/Images/Images.... Mariko explores ideas of relationships, transience, and science fiction in he...

Jenny Jones http://www.jleighjones.com/

Bryce Lafferty http://brycelafferty.com/index.html 

Zoe Zander Spiliotis http://zoespiliotis.com/

Michael Tole http://michaeltole.com/

Murielle White http://muriellewhite.com/home.html

John Adelman http://thejohnadelman.com/Home_Page.html

Julie Barnofski http://www.juliebarnofski.com/Site/Home.html

Paul Booker http://www.paulbooker.com/ 

Matthew Bourbon http://www.matthewbourbon.com/ 

Angel Cabrales http://www.angelcabrales.com/

Christa Diepenbrock http://www.christadiepenbrock.com/index.html

Robert Jessup http://www.robertjessup.com/

Ted Kincaid http://www.tedkincaid.com/

Annette Lawrence http://www.annettelawrence.net/main.html

Paho Mann http://www.pahomann.com/

Jessica McCambly http://www.jessicamccambly.com/page/page/4927733.htm

Greg Mezt http://www.utdallas.edu/~glmetz/work.html

Tom Orr http://www.tomorr.net/

Elizabeth Owens http://www.eowensdesigns.com/ 

Lesli Robertson http://www.leslirobertson.com/

John Spriggins http://johnspriggins.tripod.com/

Scott Trent http://www.scottrent.com/

David Jones and Kim Jones http://jonesnforart.com/

James Pearson http://www.pearsonart.com/index.html

Annabelle Wilson http://www.anntowergallery.com/artist_wilson.htm

George Vitorovich http://georgevitorovich.com/

Brad Ford Smith http://www.bradfordsmith.us/

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

MRAC ART SHOW



MRAC ART SHOW and Reception this Thursday Evening 5 - 7 pm

Great write up in last Sunday's Living Section Marshall News Messenger.


Marshall Visual Art Center in Marshall, Texas

Here is the Marshall Messenger review link.


Wednesday, August 17, 2016

RACHEL FISCHER at Brick Haus Collective


Blue Tic
2016


ModernDallas.net repost of my article.

Denton has been an inspiration to generations of artists in the DFW area. UNT’s art department has helped to guide so many of them through a path of self-discovery. Unfortunately, outside the University, the city of Denton has been a limited space for the visual arts. The city has a nice art center, but the commercial end hasn’t really grown around the university. Sure, collectives and individual artists come and go, but nothing has really stuck. Hopefully, the Brick Haus Collective will be an exception. One of the founding members of this collective is Rachel Fischer. Last year, she left UNT with an Master of Fine Arts, but instead of jetting out of town she stayed to create something for the Denton art scene. Fischer was at UNT as an undergraduate while I was getting my MFA at the university. She was mainly painting figures, and when she started her MFA I visited her studio to see where she was going with her work. At that time she was still focused on the body, but parts were being concealed. Hints of her sculptural work to come where taking shape.

Fischer is still focused on the body, but now in more abstract forms. Her sculptures and her paintings focus on simplifications of form. A kind of Post-Minimal/Post-Feminist hybrid art that plays with sexual cues while also giving you a wink and a nod that her work is playful. Don’t stress over these objects. Think Eva Hesse meets Judy Chicago, loaded with a great deal of West Coast style of art. Fischer’s work would fit in an LA gallery, easily. Her work has that West Coast feel of freedom and flashiness. Her choice of colors and materials makes her sculptures humorous, a little scary, and a few pieces use the fetish painting style which achieves an edible look.

A piece like Blue Tic is a good example of the fetish paint applied to a sculpture. Think of those high gloss cars or motorcycles with paint that seems to shine, glow, and change in shade as you walk by the object. Little black bumps appear on the front and two long tails poke out the end of this strange, but attractive creature. Don’t get me wrong, through all the light hearted fun, Fischer is a little dark. Keep looking and you will find the subtle dark undertones. I like the ambiguity, because the more you look at her work, the more complex they become. You start to realize that these things are much more than just play and fun, but in reality, she is mixing of some ugliness in each piece to get a deeper story.

A little over a week ago, the artist Fischer was included in a spectacular group show curated by Howard Sherman at Rudolph Blume Fine Art/Artscan Gallery down in Houston. Soon, she will be showing at Mountain View College. Of course, she can be found at Brick Haus Collective in Denton and next year, down at Box 13 in Houston. I look forward to seeing a lot more of Rachel Fischer’s art in the future.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

5TH ANNUAL DALLAS GALLERY DAY


Hall of Fragmented Mirrors, 2016, gold mirror styrene, LED, Plexiglas, power sources
84 x 48 x 48 inches at Cris Worley Fine Arts


ModernDallas.net repost of my article

I know the heat is oppressive and it is tempting to stay in your home all weekend and breathe stale air conditioned air, but this would be a mistake. I encourage you to pack a small cooler or get a cold drink at a drive through, then hit the galleries for a fun filled evening. Why visit art galleries, because it is the 5th annual Dallas Gallery Day on July 23 from noon to eight at night. Many of the usual suspects, like the CADD galleries, are hosting shows, but a few other art spaces are on the list that I am excited to explore. So, break out your GPS or pull out a map because you’re going to be driving all over town if you want to see everything.

I first want to check out Blue Print. I know it is more an interior design space, but seeing that the Blue Print is on Fairmount Street, it might rekindle the nostalgia for those good old days when the gallery scene was in mid town. The old Gerald Peters Gallery, Craighead Green Gallery, and Goss were a few of the places that made that area hip for a while. Making an attempt to put a commercial gallery face to the Arts Districts, JM Gallery over on Routh Street should be interesting to see. Works by Kenneth Burris look a little campy, but I’m game to check it out.

Close to Dragon Street, and on my must see list is Carneal Simmon Contemporary Art. They have on display these huge panels by Lindsey Dunnagan that show an aerial view of a town or home. The watercolor she uses makes these images of people's sense of place seem more like memories than real places. I am reminded of blueprints or survey maps with a richer element of color blooming across the surface. On Dragon Street, Mary Tomás Gallery is having a summer fun group show. Some great work is up and they are so friendly that it is a crime not to at least drop by and see their shows. Other galleries around Dragon Street that are open include: Barry Whistler, Christopher Marin, Cinq, Conduit, Craighead Green, Laura Rathe, The Lawley Art Group, Samuel Lynne, Smink, and Wall.

I don’t often get to LuminArté Fine Art Gallery, but I would like to get a closer look at the work by Scott Eakin and Artyce Colen. Scott Eakin in particular has intriguing paintings that feel a little like glitch art, but still have a foot in traditional Modernists geometric art. His series is titled Broken Colors which is a great description for what his paintings are accomplishing. Of course, while I am down Levee Street, I have to go see the gorgeous paintings by Anna Bogatin. She takes the minimalist approach seriously by creating meditative masterpieces of stroke after stroke of paint. Other galleries open on Levee are Sun and Moon, Cris Worley Fine Arts, and Circuit 12 Contemporary.

After you have diven all over town to see gobs of art, one more must see show it at Talley Dunn Gallery. Multiplicity: Theory, Method, and Media is real eye candy for those that like abstract, geometric, minimal/maximal mashup, with a little bit of the Op thrown into the mix. Jesse Meraz does a stellar job curating a complex group of works.

Other participating galleries include: Ro2 Art, THe Public Trust, Liliana Bloch, Level, Kirk Hopper, Kettle, Galleri Urbane, Erin Cluley, Cydonia, and the Dallas Contemporary.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Big Art Show at the Marshall Fine Art Center

Every year the art council in Marshall Texas invites artists to bring their work to be judged for their big art show event and fund raising. The auction off small works every year and I have entered a small piece with a companion large piece in the show. Here I would like to show a few other works in the show.


Marshall Liberty Band Rally
by Scott Imhof


Whose Seed (is) in itself
by Suzanne Berning



Aesthetic Synthesis
by William Putnam


Feel
by Emma Kay Staggs

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Gingko Leaf Gallery display pictures

Here you can see the eclectic collection this gallery has to offer. They are not afraid to show some wild stuff. I am impressed with their boldness, but maybe Marshall, Texas is a little more wild and crazy than I have given it credit for. Enjoy looking around and check out their site.






Saturday, August 13, 2016

More artists at Gingko Leaf Gallery

Here are three more Gingko Leaf Gallery artists showing in Marshall, Texas. The first image is of a painting in Caddo Lake. The second is a collage and the final is an abstract painting by the gallery owner.

Gallery link 



Caddo Morning
by Dennis O'Bryant


The Perfect Moment
by Lou Violette


Serenity
by Claudia Lowery (owner of the gallery)



Friday, August 12, 2016

Michelson Museum of Art abstract art

Here is a  small sample of Michelson Museum of Art permeant collection. I took pictures in their gallery space, but the lighting is extremely dramatic, so I apologize for such poor images, but I hope this will give you some ideas about some of the abstract work at the Michelson Museum in Marshall, Texas.


Yeffee Kimball 
Yellow and Red 1960


Tetsuo (Bob) Ochikubo
Calm Night of Later Winter 


George Byron Brown
Lion Tamer 1947


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Gingko Leaf Gallery in Marshall Texas

I made another visit to Gingko Leaf Gallery in Marshall, Texas.  The gallery space features a great deal of paintings and drawings. They also have sculpture, jewelry, and a whole host of interesting hand crafted objects. I particularly love grabbing a piece of pottery for my wife and I to use. Much of the work is affordable, even to a modest budget like my own. Great gift items for the casual buyer and art for the art collectors. I wanted to feature a few artists every other day for a few days to get people familiar with this some work the gallery has, before they switch all the work out in the next few months.

Gallery link


A Bent Wood 
by Paul Anderson


I Love to Draw
by William Simpson


Jessie James
by William Putnam 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Art in Dallas this weekend

Hoover Watercolor Society at the Michelson Museum

Michelson Museum of Art
Hoover Watercolor Society Traveling Exhibit
July 9 - August 29, 2016

So, I dropped by the Michelson Museum of Art in Marshall, Texas. In the museum's back gallery is a watercolor show. I wanted to share a few images of the work in the show. Some of the images have a very hot spot on them do to lighting in the gallery. The museum uses drama lighting in the gallery which makes the space darker and light is just focused on the art on the wall. 



Gwen Talbot Hodges




Judy Watkins




Donna McGee




Mary Novell


Tuesday, August 09, 2016

BONNY LEIBOWITZ at Liliana Bloch Gallery


Spin Cycle, 2016
quilted vinyl, vintage and contemporary textiles and acrylic. 50"x46"x8"
photo  credit: Kevin Todora

ModernDallas.net repost of my article

What is risk taking in art? When do you know you see it happening in an individual artist? Where do you find artists that take risk? The Bonny Leibowitz show at Liliana Bloch Gallery is a good example to help flesh out these big questions of aesthetics.

Risk taking is often associated with danger, opening oneself to ridicule, or attempting something new. Bonny Leibowitz has been pushing the boundaries of her own art production over the past few years by exiting her painting series and delving into a more hybrid form art. I can tell that her recent travels to Miami art fairs and New York City made a huge mark on her new work. The best risk taking requires that you see a lot of work in order to build a rich vocabulary. Leibowitz did the work to see as much art as possible while building a body of work for a show. If you review her Facebook account over the last year, you wouldn’t know when she even had the time to work. I think this new body of work reached that edge of successful and failed work. That point where everything could have been too kitschy or too sweet, or romantic, but Leibowitz pulls back just enough to leave us with objects that make us pause.

When an artist is taking a risk, some work might succeed while others might fail. I think Liliana Bloch was careful in selecting the work for the show. I can tell that Liliana and Leibowitz make a good fit, because both like to play with the edge of aesthetic experiences. I think on the whole, Leibowitz’ show was successful, but a piece like Suburbia with its vinyl grass print and leaf shaped cut outs, really challenged my sensibility. I don’t know if the piece was a colossal failure, or a successful pun, but I was still thinking about it after the show. That makes a piece of art a candidate for a risky piece. The small pieces in the Remnant series reflect a similar process to that of the Suburbia piece, which helped build a little extra context for the piece. All those little Remnant pieces were fun to discover all over the walls.

A risky place can be a commercial gallery. The function of a gallery is to first stay profitable, but second to take a risk now and then to test their collectors. Galleries don’t always know what might strike the fancy of collectors, gallery goers, and critics, so they sometimes show an artist or group of artists to the public to test things out. Bonny Leibowitz’ first show with Liliana Bloch was a solo show. Of course, this is still the summer, so the risk is a little lighter for the gallery, but still it is a risk. Any artist that gets a solo show must also represent the gallery’s overall mission and theme. Both artist and gallery played to the edges with their work and I think the show came out quite nicely.

I am still debating a few individual works in my head, but works like On Hold or Spin Cycle were very strong with the same amount of risk the rest of the show embodied. New Artifacts, featuring Bonny Leibowitz will be up until July 23rd at Liliana Bloch Gallery.

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT DALLAS GRAD STUDENTS by Todd Camplin


Caleb Shafer
Earth Delete Install


ModernDallas.net repost of my article

The University of Texas at Dallas, in Richardson, has an Master of Fine Arts degree in Arts and Technology. It is an unusual MFA in that this degree focuses on the interplay between arts and technology rather than traditional studio programs. Born out of the Arts and Humanities program, the ATEC classes have recently left the nest to become a new department. So, what kind of artists are being produced in this program? Some students are pursuing 3D computer animation, game design, and data visualization, to name a few. However, a few are creating visual art that appears in art galleries, art centers, and museums. I have highlighted a few here that are making some interesting work.

Video art has a short history, and like painting, the styles and subjects are diverse. They range from realistic depictions of people and places to pure abstractions. Sarah Rachel Larson in her series BackStage/OnStage, takes moments in time that are not particularly significant and creates videos. These videos are slices of life, like drinking from a cup, watching a screen, or tieing your shoe. Jessie Porter is also a video artist. Porter is interested in short bursts of movement. She is influenced by the 1980’s underground film artists in New York known as the Cinema of Transgression. However, the short clips, stark black and white, and dramatic movement strike me as more early 1900’s film test. Some of Porter’s earlier films are more kitschy and darker in content, like Hermann Nitsch and the Orgien Mysterien Theater dark.

Caleb Shafer is a video artist that often incorporates well thought out installation to bring a bit more than just a screen or projection. Shafer creates abstract art out of found film that has some negative or kitsch content. He is taking it a bit further than Richard Prince by stripping away the ad information present an image. Shafer uses analog and digital methods to remove all the violent or sexual content to uncover the abstract and beautiful elements left behind.

Cynthia Ann Miro works in video, but her still images first captured my attention. Miro likes to misuse apps and programs to pull out distorted images. For example, she uses an old version of Instagram where she purposely uploads images in the wrong shape so the she gets a distortion, or what she calls a digital slur. Because she uses the found grids on all these media platforms, I couldn’t help but see the influence of Piet Mondrian’s later work.

Liz Trosper makes colorful photo-collages that use paper and wires that seem to reflect the now, the way a Cezanne still life painting captured late 19th century. Only instead of fruit, Trosper is depicting garbage. Her musing on our throwaway society isn’t apocalyptic, but rather pleasing to the eye. Her series of 100 drawings is like simplistic wireframes. She attempts to draw the essence of shapes found outside CentralTrak.

At the last minute, Heather Charlet was suggested for a mention, so I contacted her and she sent over a few videos. Girl Bathroom Shenanigans with Overlay engaged me a great deal because of all the bathroom wall writings competing with the girls’ conversation. I had to watch it over again just to try to catch everything. Much of her work uses internal dialogue that is uncensored and thus feels authentic.

Caleb Shafer will have his MFA thesis show at CentralTrak on August 20th. Cynthia Ann Miro has an upcoming show at RO2’s Magnolia Gallery on August 25th.

Monday, August 08, 2016

BRAD FORD SMITH at RO2ART



ModernDallas.net repost of my article

When visiting an art gallery, you don’t expect to see an exhibition of scientific research. But, RO2 Gallery has a kind of science fair booth display featuring the research findings of artist/scientist Brad Ford Smith.

Anyone fortunate enough to go to the opening got to play along with Smith’s performance as a scientist. His show titled The Nomadic Fungi Institute: Spore Sprouting Test was set up like a science fair booth, with explanations, experiments, and his results were on display. Smith has been inspired by the Cordyceps, which is a genus of ascomycete fungi. This type of fungi will infect and grow inside an insect. Then the fungi will burst out of the insect and grow long stems to release spores that will infect more insects. In some cases, the fungi will even control the insect’s action in order to get the maximum spore distribution.

Once you begin to read his material on the recorded sightings, photographic evidence, and shady research done by a defunct science lab; a kind of conspiracy theory narrative begins to form. Smith plays with this false conspiracy by saying that The Institute’s research is not officially recognized by the government. Smith and his Institue of Crytomycologists could have been on an episode of X-Files. I am surprised that men in black suits didn’t come into the show and confiscate the research. Who knows, maybe they will when the show closes. The humor of this work runs through every aspect of the show. From the acting to the objects, I couldn’t help but laugh with joy and excitement looking at each little car with fungus like structures made with wire, thread, and fuzzy bits. To further illustrate the pseudoscience look, many of his experiments are in random shaped jars. A show with no university scientific standard equipment, but rather that middle school science fair look. The humor of the show is tempered by his subversive message that these fungi are really mutations caused by misuse of chemicals. Smith isn’t pointing directly at a company or individuals, but rather a broad message of warning, similar to the way many science fiction novels might tackle a topic.

What is exciting about the show is the work “test,” because much of the works look like sketches or models for much larger pieces that could populate the landscape. I began to imagine cars in places all over the country with huge fungi sprouting out of them. It would be gorgeous.

Brad Ford Smith hasn’t come to this experiment for fungus shaped objects out of the blue. He has been making organically shaped sculptures since the early aughts. His Cat Food Garden series, Pocket Candies series, and Servings series all invoke this look of an object naturally grown. Much of his drawings also reflect his obsession with the organic form. Smith may use humor to get his point across, but his more serious undercurrents breathed life into this series of work.

Brad Ford Smith will be showing at RO2 through July 23rd.

Friday, August 05, 2016

MATHEW ZEFELDT at Circuit 12 Contemporary



ModernDallas.net repost of my article.

Children and teenagers growing up in the 1980’s and 90’s might want to head over to Circuit 12 Contemporary to see a show titled Marble Head from Herm. Especially if you were a computer nerd like me or game console junky like my friends. The graphics during that period were boxy, pixelated, and had limited color pallet. Much of Mathew Zefeldt’s paintings represent images in the style of 8 to 32 bit graphics. But don’t get too nostalgic, because this show is not a Pop rehash for you to reflect upon your videogame glory days.

This show is about simulacra, layering history, and internet culture. Mathew Zefeldt has created a very slick group of paintings that have a machine made quality. Because of his repeat of images, particularly the 200 plus Marble Head from Herm representations, you might think he used a projector or computer, but Zefeldt is rendering his images with that old tried and true grid system that has helped artists make realistic work since the Renaissance. These images are only digital in style, not in execution.

Zefeldt’s selection of the marble head is not by accident. The original object he is musing from is a Roman copy of a Greek sculpture. The Romans made a copy, because they admired the Greeks. Since this object is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the sculpture has had its image reproduced a million times over in press, postcards, internet, etc. All reproductions leave you unsatisfied. Zefeldt furthers this play of simulacra by representing a digitized version. This stylistic step away from the original object now bears no relation to the real object, and therefore his image of a head becomes, as Baudrillard might say, pure simulacrum. Thus, Zefeldt looks as if he is repeating his image of the head like someone pressing copy then paste on a computer paint program.

Pixelation is not the only style at play, Zefeldt places moments of rendered realism in many of these works. Vernon Fisher’s recent paintings uses a mixture of pixelated and realistic images. I see a similarity in their work, but Fisher is still referencing traditional collage, whereas Zefeldt is using compositions more in tune with what you might encounter on computer screens. A good example is Donkey Kong Country. An acrylic on Canvas painting that uses a pink gradient background, about 45 heads, a pixelated style tree, piece of lumber, and birds eye view pyramid blocks with a realistically rendered still life of fruit. All the images looked cut and pasted on like an early 1990’s website where the pictures are locked to the edge of the composition.

Zefeldt, like Fisher, Rashenburg, or any artist that uses the method of collage takes seemingly random images and makes the viewer create a narrative. Unlike many collage artists, Zefeldt isn’t trying to obscure his interests. Among them are: Wolfenstein 3D, art history, cartoons, and a refreshing drink. Sounds like a guy I can hang out with. You have until July 14th to catch this fun exhibition. I don’t think I even mentioned that this painting show also comes with an amazing installation that you have to see to believe. When I saw the show, I said to myself, this is happening in Dallas at a commercial gallery, wow!

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Hear the Screams of the Butterfly by Troy Camplin

Troy Camplin's Novella just came out!


Click here to get a copy: Hear the Screams of the Butterfly

What happens when a brilliant man's love goes unrequited? This novella by Troy Camplin explores such a theme. Hear the Screams of the Butterfly is modeled after Wilhelm Wolfgang von Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther, considered the first masterpiece of Romantic literature. 

This tale is told from the point-of-view of a man who has lost his dearest possession, his mind. Camplin explores the themes of revelation of truth, living authentically, and questioning the validity of imposed authority. While Patric is hospitalized, his closest friend encourages him to write his story to release the troubles he faces. The reader catches glimpses of a man on edge who sincerely tries to keep his life in order but finds everyday reality too taxing and demanding. 

Troy Camplin reminds us why we live, how our lives can turn from us any moment, and why we should soak up our living desires at each turn. There are existential questions posed here, and you won't find easy answers. Existentialism itself is put on the rocks. There are hints of a libertarian's contempt for a social order that places demands on its constituents without granting the means to satisfy them. Existentialism only asks one thing: to live passionately and authentically. As we read this novella we are left with the impression that Camplin has done just that.

KATHRYN WATERS at the Glema Mahr Center for the Arts in Madisonville, Kentucky



ModernDallas.net repost of my article.

Back in the early months of 2002, I had my first large show at Glema Mahr Center for the Arts in Madisonville, Kentucky. When I drive through Kentucky, I make attempt to visit the center. Inside the center is the Anne P. Baker Gallery, which wraps around the theater, so the wall space is quite substantial. Over the years, I have dropped in to see the space, but usually I encounter group shows. However, this summer I was excited to see a solo show. I say solo, but Kathryn Waters collaborated with a poet Matthew Graham on a few pieces in the show.

Kathryn Waters is professor of art at the University of Southern Indiana. Waters displayed examples of her mastery of material and subject matter. Over half of the show was chalk pastels and the other work was large oil paintings. Her work ranged from landscape in Europe, nighttime landscapes in the US Midwest, still lives, and architectural features (particularly door fixtures).

She calls her work Narrative Realism and a recurring theme seems to be travel. All but one picture has no figures. The one painting with a person depicts a woman sleeping with her head turned away from the viewer. I thought about how all the elements of this show might relate. Door handles might be details of a trip, the landscapes might be postcard captured moments, and the still life drawings might be what is consumed on the trip. I am still a little puzzled how the two depictions of flower arrangements relate. But as one of my professors at UT Dallas said, many artists goes through a “painting a flower” phase. Maybe these arrangements were in the hotel.

The paintings were well rendered with the economy of shape and shadow, but idealized in a similar way as Edward Hopper approached realism. Photorealism is not Waters aim. The pastel drawings were rendered quite masterfully, but I thought the still life drawings had the most punch. These works were engaging a moment before the meal or drinks were consumed. I particularly noticed her skillful representation of glass and liquids. The landscapes were pretty, but I couldn’t get into them until I read the accompanying poem of Matthew Graham. The words took you on a journey, but I won’t cheapen the poem by just giving you a snippet.

When I came across the night scenes painting by Waters, I was instantly reminded of Sarah Williams works of rural houses and building at night. However, were as Waters gives you the expected iconic hotel scenes with neon lights, Williams tended to pick the unexpected subjects and make them iconic. Waters’ musing on the door fixtures was also a bit flat. I just couldn’t read a strong narrative in these works. Overall, the exhibition showed a breadth of her skill as an oil painter and pastel drawer.

If you are passing through Kentucky, check out this huge space in Madisonville. Glema Mahr Center for the Arts will have Kathryn Waters paintings and drawing up until June 17th.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

5TH ANNUAL DALLAS GALLERY DAY



ModernDallas.net repost of my article

I know the heat is oppressive and it is tempting to stay in your home all weekend and breathe stale air conditioned air, but this would be a mistake. I encourage you to pack a small cooler or get a cold drink at a drive through, then hit the galleries for a fun filled evening. Why visit art galleries, because it is the 5th annual Dallas Gallery Day on July 23 from noon to eight at night. Many of the usual suspects, like the CADD galleries, are hosting shows, but a few other art spaces are on the list that I am excited to explore. So, break out your GPS or pull out a map because you’re going to be driving all over town if you want to see everything.

I first want to check out Blue Print. I know it is more an interior design space, but seeing that the Blue Print is on Fairmount Street, it might rekindle the nostalgia for those good old days when the gallery scene was in mid town. The old Gerald Peters Gallery, Craighead Green Gallery, and Goss were a few of the places that made that area hip for a while. Making an attempt to put a commercial gallery face to the Arts Districts, JM Gallery over on Routh Street should be interesting to see. Works by Kenneth Burris look a little campy, but I’m game to check it out.

Close to Dragon Street, and on my must see list is Carneal Simmon Contemporary Art. They have on display these huge panels by Lindsey Dunnagan that show an aerial view of a town or home. The watercolor she uses makes these images of people's sense of place seem more like memories than real places. I am reminded of blueprints or survey maps with a richer element of color blooming across the surface. On Dragon Street, Mary Tomás Gallery is having a summer fun group show. Some great work is up and they are so friendly that it is a crime not to at least drop by and see their shows. Other galleries around Dragon Street that are open include: Barry Whistler, Christopher Marin, Cinq, Conduit, Craighead Green, Laura Rathe, The Lawley Art Group, Samuel Lynne, Smink, and Wall.

I don’t often get to LuminArté Fine Art Gallery, but I would like to get a closer look at the work by Scott Eakin and Artyce Colen. Scott Eakin in particular has intriguing paintings that feel a little like glitch art, but still have a foot in traditional Modernists geometric art. His series is titled Broken Colors which is a great description for what his paintings are accomplishing. Of course, while I am down Levee Street, I have to go see the gorgeous paintings by Anna Bogatin. She takes the minimalist approach seriously by creating meditative masterpieces of stroke after stroke of paint. Other galleries open on Levee are Sun and Moon, Cris Worley Fine Arts, and Circuit 12 Contemporary.

After you have diven all over town to see gobs of art, one more must see show it at Talley Dunn Gallery. Multiplicity: Theory, Method, and Media is real eye candy for those that like abstract, geometric, minimal/maximal mashup, with a little bit of the Op thrown into the mix. Jesse Meraz does a stellar job curating a complex group of works.

Other participating galleries include: Ro2 Art, THe Public Trust, Liliana Bloch, Level, Kirk Hopper, Kettle, Galleri Urbane, Erin Cluley, Cydonia, and the Dallas Contemporary.

RAY KATZ at the Krasl Art Center St. Joseph, Michigan



ModernDallas.net repost of my article

I was traveling around southwestern Michigan this week when I came across the Krasl Art Center in St. Joseph. The art center overlooks Lake Michigan along with several other tourist spots. Although parking around town was a bit of a pain, the art center provided a space and even let me stay there for a bit to walk around and see their sculptures near the center. I was reminded of the Art on Henderson project in Dallas. The twenty-one sculptures were installed in five locations in St. Joseph and Benton Harbor, but what was really interesting were the models displayed in the art center. Each sculpture has a corresponding prototype of the work inside. So ideas were displayed at the center, while execution of those ideas were outside.

The art center had two main galleries that flowed into one another. One side had the Sculpture Biennial with the models, but the other side had the works by Ray Katz. Katz received an MFA from Wayne State University in Sculpture back in 1968. It is clear from his sculptures that craftsmanship of his objects has become precise, while maintaining a little evidence of his process. His show had simple shapes combined into a complex sculpture. I say simple, but really these are formal elements of thick straight lines, circles, squares, triangles, and curved lines. He even employed a spring shape in a few works. Then he combined them together to make interesting shapes that made you look around at every angle. Many works were small enough to look a little above. Also, much of the works were brushed aluminum which made the surface quite attractive. One sculpture titled Stargazer was a collection of shapes overlapping and then framed by a square with a cut out circle. My children enjoyed pointing out the shapes while I enjoyed the clean simplicity of Katz’s composition.

He also had large drawings that reflected his ideas in the sculptural works. Somehow, his drawings made his sculptures all the more interesting. His drawing style was loose in his shading and highlights, but tight around his objects. The drawings also helped tie with the Sculptural biennial. I find any concept work paired with product strengthens both works. However, in Katz case, the the sculptures and drawings were both finished products in their own right.

The Sculpture Biennial includes works by: Carl Billingsley, Jan Dean, Darrin Hallowell, Brent Harris, Suzanne Horwitz, Indira Johnson, Terrence Karpowicz, Tuck Langland, Travis Lanning, Albert Lavergne, Cynthia McKean, Margot McMahon, Brian Monaghan, Luck Russell, Jozef Sumichrast, William Walther, and of course Ray Katz.

The outdoor sculptures will be on display through September 2017. Ray Katz’s show titled Genesis will be up through June 26th. Both shows are at the Krasl Art Center in St. Joseph, Michigan. Even if you are going to visit Chicago, I encourage you to wander your way around the bottom of Lake Michigan into the state of Michigan. Your excursion will be well rewarded if you are a sculpture fan.

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

ROGER BENSASSON + YUMIKO KIMURA


ModernDallas.net repost of my article

 The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art brings the works of Roger Bensasson and Yumiko Kimura across the pond to show another angle on geometric art. Yumiko is from Japan but lives in Paris, while Bensasson was born in Paris and lives in Bagnolet, France. Whereas Kimura glass work feel flat, Bensasson brought on some exciting work using minimal use of line, shape, and color.

The most impactful piece of Yumiko Kimura’s show was the large plates of glass cut into 90 degree triangles, connected to another triangle of glass, then places on the floor in ever decreasing sizes. The piece took up a room and felt a bit dangerous to approach. If the rest of her work was at the same scale, they might have worked better. But most of her glass pieces felt more decorative than challenging my aesthetic boundaries. However, I did enjoy her little plastic pieces. I am not sure why they worked more for me than the glass pieces. Maybe the plastic make for more interesting shapes.

At first, I was skeptical of Roger Bensasson’s objects. I think the intensity of repetition caught me off guard. His triangles/check marks were in white or red, sometimes cut out, and repeated once or twice on a piece. Other works were lines cut out using black or white areas. These lines also repeated. I think the cut out and constructed areas that would jet out of the box composition started to hook me. I began walking up close to see how each work was constructed. The work was cut out like a machine had produced these relief sculptures. I was amazed in the precision he took on each object. That red he uses also demanded your attention, so I hung around a bit more on these pieces just soak in that red. Also, his use of museum board is intriguing. I remember playing with a little of this board back in my graphic design days. It is pretty much mat board, only more expenses, so you just cringe when you make a mistake when cutting it.

To be honest, I took more time looking back at their permanent collection which is expanding all the time. Some day, that whole building might be taken over by the museum. Most of the walls are covered in salon style to fit so much work. The museum not only has works by international artists, but I spotted quite a few Texas artists as well. The museum has always been supportive of the local art scene. Some highlights of the collection for me include: Josef Albers, Carlos Cruz-Diez, Orna Feinstein, and Bridget Riley.

Both works by Roger Bensasson and Yumiko Kimura will be down on July 24. If you visit, sign their guest book to get information on some upcoming developments. I am excited to see the MADI’s new acquisitions.

Monday, August 01, 2016

MAYSEY CRADDOCK at Cris Worley Fine Arts


Root and Sky, 2016

gouache & thread on found paper, 54.75 x 38.5 inches



ModernDallas.net repost of my article

A forest has grown up on the walls of Cris Worley Fine Arts with the works by Maysey Craddock. Framed works on paper depicting trees populate the gallery, but this is much more that just a show depicting nature.

To me, Maysey Craddock’s work is partly about recycling in a meaningful way. Craddock reuses found material and makes that material last though pulling out the acid. This detour away from the landfill and into art still reflects ideas of the usual fate of her material. Her paper might have mulched trees or ended up floating down rivers into lakes and oceans. Now her recycled material is acting as representational art. What I find interesting in this body of work is that she has removed images of decayed buildings being reclaimed by nature. Many images of her past work played with this idea of returning things to the earth in a more literal approach. Now she uses the material to illustrate her ideas more metaphorically. Maybe it is because I am aware of her past work, but I see Craddock working with a similar theme of recycling, renewal, and the life affirming natural world.

Some of her forest scenes show a reflection in the water, but by displaying the work on its side, I was reminded of computer generated reflection tools. The forest and reflection become a symmetrical silhouette object. It took me a moment to put together that she was showing a landscape displayed on its side. Other images use the paper as a source for her tree silhouettes with bushes and tree limbs painted in the background. I enjoy how she sometime fades her paint to a lighter shade across her composition or just in her trees. The detail of lines are quite attractive and keep my eyes wandering around her pieces. Each work seems to be too delicate and elegant to be on such throw away material.

Another powerful aspect of her work is the sewing of papers together to create her “canvas.” The materials she collects have to be connected together in some way to make her work have some scale. It would seem that sewing would be a good solution practically, but the stitches also work visually. One could even see this similar to movie portrayals of Dr. Frankenstein's monster. Craddock is sewing together an already devastated landscape caused by climate change and land mismanagement. But like Dr. Frankenstein, she breathes life into her work.

June 18th is the final day for this beautiful exhibition of works on paper, but Cris Worley Fine Arts will likely feature more shows by Maysey Craddock in the future. I mean, how could they not feature her again after a compelling, thought provoking show like this one.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

SLIPSTREAM at Kirk Hopper Fine Art



ModernDallas.net repost of my article

When will the reaction against deskilled, dull, and uninspired art catch fire? Kirk Hopper Fine Arts takes a crack at this question with another offering of artists trying to buck the trend of lazy conceptualism and zombie abstraction. Last time they featured a group of painters, but this time, the medium is drawing. In a show titled Slipstream, curated by Susie Kalil, drawings are featured because Kalil values the individual labor, craft, as well as the skills shown in each work. Style isn’t the driver of this show, yet much of these artists work in themes of the surreal or other worldly abstractions. This group show will include ten artists and I would like to introduce you to a few of them.

Roger Winter has written a book titled On Drawing. His work can be categorized as realism, but not the idealized, sentimental realism, rather a more gritty and stark representation of life. Mary Jenewien is ambitious in scale and content with her very personal works. Drawing is just an element of her breadth of work. I don’t know what to expect for Jenewien, but I am sure it will also tap into realism while remaining dark and soulful. In fact, dark themes can be found in several other artists works in the show. Robert Crumb’s comics have been a clear influence on Bill Haveron’s drawings. Strange narratives seem to twist and turn in his work. Lynn Randolph and Noriko Shinohara also tell surreal stories in their work. Shinohara also employees cartoon style techniques using “less is more” to make an image.

James Surls and Jorge Alegria have a very different style and approach to drawing than many in the exhibition. Surls’ drawings seem to relate to his sculptures, directly or indirectly. The drawings have the same lightness in form and similar compositional ideas as his other works. Alegria’s drawings depict the morning fog or afternoon misty skies. Yet the drawings also look abstract and haunting. His treatment of anamorphic perspective using graphite makes his work my most anticipated of the whole show. What you see is what you get from Lois Dodd’s simple, quiet, and straightforward representation with the most economy of line and shape to muse on a person, place, or thing.

Kirk Hopper Fine Arts will have an opening reception May 28th. The ten artists include: Jorge Alegria, Lois Dodd, Bill Haveron, Alexandre Hogue, Mary Jenewein, Angelbert Metoyer, Lynn Randolph, Noriko Shinohara, James Surls, Emmi Whitehorse, and Roger Winter. Also, I would like to add one important show coming up. Kirk Hopper Fine Arts own assistant director, Giovanni Valderas will be having a show at the MAC on June 4th. This is an impossible to miss event and I know the work will be something people will be talking about months after the show is over.