Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Mind of Winter:
Landscape Paintings by Laura Heijn
Art at The Bistro will host a show of landscape paintings by Johnson artist Laura Heijn from July 9th through September 5th.
Opening reception : Wednesday, July 14th 4 to 6 pm. Come meet the artist, see her work, and enjoy hors-d’oeuvres prepared by chef Chase Vanderveer. Cash bar is available. Winding Brook Bistro, 933 VT Route 100C in Johnson.
In viewing Laura’s paintings one has the sensation of being alone out in the natural world. In the winter pictures, archetypal natural forms (trees, fields, mountains) reflect an internal experience and invite contemplation and stillness. The expansive views of spring and summer are depicted in wide, horizontal panels that offer pathways for entry into and movement through the landscape.
Laura works in acrylic on paper or panel, largely from the views immediately surrounding her home in Johnson. Her technique depends on the fast-drying quality of acrylic paint itself, which allows for changes in direction as the painting evolves. She is thus able to overlay new marks on old without a mixing and muddying of the layers, responding to the interplay of subject and painting in the moment. This approach began as a practical solution to the problem of painting outdoors in remote places, and out of a backpack on extended wilderness trips.
Though over the years her painting habits have evolved from the snapshot depictions of a traveler on foot in the landscape, to the steadier gaze of an inhabitant of one place, her paintings retain the freshness of the single moment of seeing, even as she paints her most familiar views.
Laura grew up in Massachusetts and studied art and English literature at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and at Harvard University in Cambridge. She has lived in Johnson for 17 years, where she runs a small home dairy operation and raises three sometimes-homeschooled children.
Monday, June 28, 2010
Jeri Lynn Eisenberg
July 9 - August 10, 2010
Please join us for an opening reception on Friday, July 9, 6:00 - 8:00
Image: Spring Creek by David Maille 13" x 18 3/8" Oil and gilding on panel
Thursday, June 24, 2010
In the Main Floor Gallery: Anarchy - Artists express their views on anarchism in a show that includes paintings, assemblage, photographs, sculptures, collage, video, and stone carvings.
In the Second Floor Gallery: Not Just Childs' Play - Inspiring Art from Barre Students
In the Third Floor Gallery: Detours by Angelo Arnold & Jason Baldwin
Exhibit Dates: June 22 - July 31, 2010
Reception: Friday, June 25, 5:30-7:30 PM
Special Event: "At Work in the Bridal Industry," a poetry reading by Nadell Fishman on Sunday, July 18 (7-8 PM). The SPA galleries will be open before and after the presentation.
Anarchy at SPA
The "Anarchy" show involves 13 artists and a selection of photographs, paintings, encaustics, collage and stone carvings that explore anarchism. For example, Peter Schumann of Glover, leader of the Bread and Puppet Theatre, created a large, mural painting in black latex paint tones called Popul Vu, that occupies the entire wall in the rear of the main gallery.
LALI of West Pawlet carved a slate relief work that honors the feminist anarchists of the Spanish Civil War. Larry Bowling of Charlestown, MA is displaying 2 collage and encaustic pieces: One incorporates Emma Goldman's mug shot taken at her arrest and the other depicts Oscar Wilde's gay rights activism and his roots in anarchism. Heather Pipino of Montpelier assembled
a large-scale painting on layered cardboard that depicts different forms of anarchism.
The "Anarchy" exhibit coincides with Barre's Heritage Festival at the end of July. Barre has a deep connection with the Italian anarchist movement. For example, anarchist Luigi Galeani resided in Barre and served as the editor to one of the most important anarchist newspapers in the country, Cronaca Sovversiva. For a recent article on Galeani by local historian Paul Heller, see The Times Argus website.
While viewing the Anarchy show at SPA, visitors are welcome to peruse books on the topic, graphic art of the Industrial Workers of the World (the Wobblies), and historic photographs, which are on loan by the Aldrich Public Library and the Barre Historical Society.
SPA Gallery Hours: Tues-Fri: 10AM-5PM, Sat: Noon-4PM
NOTE: SPA will be closed on Sat., July 3, 2010
Image: Branded, collage and encaustic by Larry Bowling
OPENING RECEPTION: FRIDAY JULY 9, 5-9 p.m. Featuring music by Thea Calitri Martin, principal French Horn of the Vermont Philharmonic Orchestra, Meredith Martin, vocalist, and Fred Haas, renowned jazz musician. Complimentary refreshments. Coincides with Middlebury's Arts Walk.
FOR MORE INFO: Contact Mary Swanson: firstname.lastname@example.org (802) 458-0464
Visit www.arthousevt.com for additional info & directions
Flynndog presents UNALTERED: A pure unadulterated and non thematic very mixed media group exhibition brought to you by the artists and writers of *Alter(ed) Ego.
Opening Reception on Friday, July 2nd - 6 to 8pm
The show runs July1 thru July 26th. The gallery is open 7am-7pm, 7 days a week
FLYNNDOG is located 208 Flynn Ave. Burlington,Vermont www.flynndog.net
Image: Oil painting by Wendy James
Monday, June 21, 2010
Less is Enough
Blinking Light Gallery to Feature Special Exploratory Chapter in the Art of Dennis Murphy
When longtime Plainfield resident Dennis Murphy suffered a stroke some three years ago that left him unable to create his art in the usual way, he turned to less usual means. The Blinking Light Gallery will present a collection of Dennis’s new oil pastels and digitally enhanced photography from July 1 to August 1, with an artist’s reception Saturday, July 10 from 2:00-5:00.
As Dennis explains, “This is not a standard exhibition of fully completed works. I’ve been very engaged in finding out what I can do, substituting other media for those I used to work in.” He’s ready to show his progress to friends and the community, and to share his vision that Less is Enough – the title of his show.
For Dennis, exploring unusual means of artistic expression is not unusual at all. He may be most widely known as the musician, composer and instrument maker whose fascination with Javanese music led to his role in the creation of the first North American gamelan. (A gamelan is an Indonesian musical ensemble, rooted in the islands of Bali and Java, featuring a variety of xylophone-type instruments, gongs, bamboo flutes, and plucked strings. Locals know that Dennis has hosted The Plainfield Village Gamelan for many years at his farmhouse. The group will provide a bit of live music at the July 10 opening. In addition to his art, photography and gamelan work, Dennis has also composed pieces of chamber and choral music, and he’s written plays -- some of which feature a unique system of language of his own invention.
The Blinking Light Gallery is located on Main St. just off U.S. Route 2 in the village of Plainfield, Vermont. Hours of operation are Thursdays from 2 to 6 P.M., and Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 A.M. to 6 P.M. The goal of the arts organization, founded in 1999, is to promote and sustain the creative work of regional artists through a cooperatively-run, community-centered organization. For more information about the Blinking Light Gallery, call (802) 454-0141 or visit www.blinkinglightgallery.com.
The Opening Reception is Friday, July 9th at 5pm., featuring the artist-led Walkabout tour of Exposed! During the Walkabout tour, the majority of the artists attend and share reflections on their work. This year’s artists include Leila Bandar, Jon Black, Tyler Buswell, Mireille Clapp, Kat Clear, Chris Curtis, Tom Douglas, Kenji Endo, Nadine Faraj, Joel Fisher, Rob Hitzig, Bruce Hathaway, James Irving, Harlan Mack, Jordan Pratt, Peg Smith, Piper Strong, Denis Versweyveld, and Catherine Ward.
Image: Artist Nadine Faraj strength-testing the steel skeleton of Haven, in her studio. (Completed piece is Haven, 2010 steel reinforced concrete, 5'x7'x4' )
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Joseph Chirchirillo’s kinetic sculptures, inspired by cycles found in nature, will be featured in a show at the Southern Vermont Arts Center – Elizabeth de C. Wilson Museum, opening on July 3. The public is invited to a special free opening party on Saturday, July 3, held from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. and featuring hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar.
Mr. Chirchirillo says “My work comes out of the spirit of using found objects and creating pieces that are fun to look at and to use,” and visitors to SVAC from July 3 through September 12 will have a chance to enjoy the works in a series of "Sculpture Systems" powered by small electric motors, pumps or sometimes by hand. This series, one that Joe has been working on for 10 years, is inspired by the cycles found in nature: the process of rainfall and absorption, or the impact of wind blowing through branches. All of the sculptures in this show are interactive, engaging the viewer in discovering the inner workings of the process.
Executive Director Christopher Madkour notes “Joe Chirchirillo has exhibited widely and received numerous grants and awards, including an NEA Fellowship. Southern Vermont Arts Center is pleased to welcome this nationally known artist, who makes his home in Bennington County, and to give the public a chance to see his creative and engaging work. We’re also very grateful to the support of Mr. & Mrs. Gilbert B. Silverman for their sponsorship, which has made this exhibit possible.”
The Southern Vermont Arts Center
Image: Artificial Wind
Helen Day Art Center is delighted to announce that we will be hosting the Habitat For Artists project this summer in Stowe. Habitat for Artists (HFA) is a site-specific, collaborative exhibition / creation / intervention project that provides artists with a basic 6 ft. by 6 ft. shed to be considered as a habitat/workspace for the duration of the exhibition. Participating artists will inhabit this simple and temporary structure and use the space to create art works or turn the structure into an artwork prior to and during the time of the exhibition. One habitat will be constructed on the front lawn of the Helen Day and the indoor gallery will host an exhibition entitled Recycling the Studio, a collection of works by artists involved in the HFA project over the past three years. It will also include an indoor Habitat as well as historical information and images documenting the project's history and evolution.
Habitat for Artists (HFA) was founded by Hudson Valley-based artist Simon Draper in 2008 after working for years with ideas related to space and found materials in his art practice. He relates a story about a woman contacted by the local authorities to remove her ice house before the spring thaw took hold. She protested the ice fishing shed was not her own. Later after examining the shed she discovered its owner had used her previously discarded paintings to cover part of the shed, allowing the police to confuse it for her own. It was out of this idea of repurposing artwork as a form of community interaction that the habitats were born.
Over the past three years, artists involved with HFA have built and worked in over twenty 6' x 6' temporary, portable studios made of predominantly reused and recycled material and installed on various sites, including a CSA farm, an environmental center, a river park and a parking lot. The studios function as residencies with a modest yet distinct presence that enables artists to explore their art practice and develop a new dialogue with different communities, as well as with other artists. Simultaneously a place for creating work and the work itself, these structures function as both studios for artists and installations for viewers to enter into and engage with. The HFA initiative addresses a number of diverse topics, such as: the creation of communities by artists and the consequent ejection of artists from these communities; matters of sustainability in art; thinking about the artistic process and its private and public manifestations; providing spaces of reflection for the public and asking the question "How much, how little, space is required to create and show art?"
Images: Top: Molly Rausch. Lost and Found, 2009
Bottom: Habitat for Artists Montage, 2004-2009
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Corliss Blakely’s “Visions of Nature”
Opens in the Amy E. Tarrant Gallery
BURLINGTON, VT — St. Albans native Corliss Blakely presents Visions of Nature, a new collection of paintings created with innovative computer technology in an artist’s reception on Friday, July 2 from 5:30 to 8 pm in the Amy E. Tarrant Gallery at the Flynn Center. The collection remains on display through Saturday, September 25.
Blakely, a seventh generation Vermonter, her formal art training at Vesper George Art School and The Museum School of Fine Arts in Boston. Corliss paints still-life and Vermont landscapes in a classically realist style. The homes, farms, and antiques of her ancestors in Northern Vermont are often portrayed in her paintings. Corliss is internationally recognized for her work in several media, including watercolor, oil, and egg tempera. Her paintings hang in collections on every continent.
Corliss is now painting on the iPhone and iPad, which has “opened up a new world for artists,” she says. “The world is changing and artists now have a new canvas to create on.” Corliss has translated her meticulous technique in oils to these new technologies. She will demonstrate painting on her iPhone and iPad with ArtStudio, her favorite painting app.
Corliss Blakely’s work is displayed in conjunction with the Flynn’s annual Garden Tour on Sunday, July 11. Corliss will be in the Amy E. Tarrant Gallery on Sunday from 11 am to 2 pm to demonstrate her new painting techniques.
The Amy E. Tarrant Gallery—an extension of the Flynn Lobby—is open to the public on Saturdays from 11 am to 4 pm. Performance attendees may also view exhibits prior to MainStage shows and during intermission. To receive information about upcoming gallery exhibits and artist receptions, update your “My Account” page at www.flynncenter.org.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
PRESS RELEASE: Photographers Greitzer and Strong to Exhibit at Photostop Gallery in White River Junction
in.side/out.side with photographs by Andrea Greitzer and Rob Strong will be on display at the PHOTOSTOP Gallery from July 2nd through July 30th. An opening reception for the photographers will be held on July 2nd from 5-8 pm with a gallery talk by the artists at 7 pm.
Both Greitzer and Strong will be exhibiting photographs of architectural elements and locations, both interiors and exteriors, from their unique perspectives. Andrea Greitzer is interested in the areas of museums that surround art, the beautiful spaces we often ignore on our way to look at something else. Her work captures the light, mood and color of museum spaces around the world. Rob Strong’s photographs of parking lots, industrial facades and metal fabricated structures along America’s highways examine the way man and nature have collaborated, sometimes unwittingly.
Andrea Greitzer is a lecturer and professor in the photography department at Northeastern University in Boston. Her photographs have been exhibited in museums and galleries across the country and her work is in a variety of permanent collections. Rob Strong is a freelance photographer and founder of the Chiron Photos collective. His work has been published in
a variety of newspapers and magazines, including the Valley News.
PHOTOSTOP Gallery is located in Suite 150 on the first floor of the Tip Top Media Arts Building, 85 North Main Street, White River Jct., VT 05001. Gallery hours are Weds. through Saturday from 2-7:30 pm. Other hours are available by appointment. On First Fridays and opening nights the gallery will be open until 8 pm. For additional information, call 802.698.0320. PHOTOSTOP’s website is www.photostopvt.com.
Top, Andrea Greitzer, Museum of Modern Art 19
Bottom, Rob Strong, Milk Truck, New York, 2007
The JDK Gallery, at 47 Maple Street in Burlington, is pleased to present Things You Wanted to Make Real, works by Charles Papillo.
Papillo’s work is based on the idea of open-ended storytelling, which generates conversation that deals with topics such as identity, reality, and possibility. The subjective manner in which people understand this work is the root of his storytelling. There is not one narrative that corresponds to each piece or series of pieces, nor will there ever be one overarching narrative that is correct. The work becomes more about the number of ways the objects can be considered and how they may fit into the real, or perhaps imaginary, world. Working with materials at hand, both found objects and created forms, he solidifies a unique collection that examines the purpose and function of a group of objects, exploring an ever-evolving personal philosophy of “life as art.”
Papillo, a Vermont native, currently resides in San Francisco. He holds a BFA from Parsons the New School for Design (New York) and has studied in Spain, Greece, and the Galapagos Islands. He's also served as an artist’s assistant for various printmakers, sculptors, and video artists. His work has been displayed in numerous solo and group exhibitions in New York City, San Francisco, and Vermont and can be explored further at charlespapillo.com.
The opening will be held on July 1, from 6 to 9 pm. Regular exhibition hours will be Monday–Friday, 8:30 am–5:30 pm.
Burlington City Arts is pleased to announce its newest Artist-in-Residence, Beth Robinson, who will be in residence on the fourth floor of the Firehouse Center for the Visual Arts on Church Street in Burlington from now until July 24th, 2010.
Beth Robinson creates odd dolls, that are not something you will find in a toy store. They are hardly something you would buy for a child. They are mis-proportioned, strangely dressed, and they have a character uniquely their own. Each doll is entirely hand made using polymer clays, vintage fabrics, acrylic paint, and sometimes real human hair or teeth. Each piece is one of a kind.
Robinson is a self taught artist who has been living in Vermont for 15 years. While she has dabbled in a variety of mediums, it was the discovery of polymer clay that allowed her to combine her interests in design, sewing, sculpting, and painting and gave her a concrete foundation of expression in the form of Strange Dolls.
Since 2003, she has been creating macabre and grotesque characters in clay for collectors across the globe. Robinson is currently represented in Berlin/NYC/London by Strychnin Gallery. Robinson's dolls have been featured in the magazines: Art Doll Quarterly, SPIN, "Stuff" in the US, "Maxim UK" and "Maxim Hong Kong," "Rue Morgue" in Canada, "RIP" in Russia, and "Nordic Vision" in Norway.
Robinson’s website is: www.strangedolls.net.
Residency begins June 1st and continues through July 24th. Beth welcomes visitors to the fourth floor of the Firehouse Center for the Visual Arts on Church Street on Saturdays from 11-4pm. Additionally, she will also welcome visitors during the Firehouse Gallery main floor exhibition opening reception on July 2nd.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
By Bret T. Chenkin
With the proliferation of self-conscious artists, theoretical discourse, and mega-gallery shows these days, it is always a sense of relief when two young artists present a sincere, ingenuous, but thoughtful and well-executed exhibit. This is just the case with Husk/Hive, a joint showing of two recent Bennington College graduates, Tess Meyer and Lisa Dietrich, at the Vermont Arts Exchange in North Bennington. The two artists explore different mediums and ideas – Dietrich working mostly with manipulated prints, while Meyer is more of a sculptor – yet their work intersects in how their thematic explorations connect objects to the human experience.
Both artists show much talent, and both are very ingenious with material. Dietrich actually has two projects going: the first is the latest installment of her “True Needs Project”, that incorporates her 361 Facebook friends and their expressed needs for daily living. These needs were defined as those ideas/feelings/objects that one cannot live without. From a list of over 300 words, Dietrich pared it to 50 essential words, which were then printed on beeswax (the size of the printed format is roughly 12x16"). The beeswax exudes a flowery aroma, energizing what is usually a deadened sense, while the tactile quality of bumpy wax stimulates the imagination, creating an art that is malleable, living.
The words chosen are anti-Orwellian; they appropriate a language enervated by advertisers and mass media and attempt to resuscitate their flaccid meanings. And that is the issue: our words as capitalistic property vs. our words as sacred to humanistic expression. Dietrich even quotes Adorno to reinforce her revolutionary bent – and the aim of this piece to escape mindless production. (One even thinks of Shelly’s "Bees of England"). The irony of course is that the nature herself is tyrannical, and the world of bees is structured on oppressive hierarchies. So does one ever transcend oppression?
Dietrich’s other project is a conversation with (and manipulation of) recently-found photographs of her family. They appear to be mostly from the Weimar Era—and the men and women display a content bourgeois bliss, as if all the chaos of post-World War One Germany is occurring in some other nation. These are the men and women that Mann and Hesse feared, if not disparaged: a soldier, a beautiful woman in upper middle class garb, a group of jocular businessmen, a child in a stodgy suit. The silkscreened photographs are enlarged to about two feet and rendered in black and white – almost as if they are drawn from charcoal. But any sense of sentimental reverence is shattered by the inclusion of painted thought bubbles – a la the postmodern pop tradition – depicting an item each figure may by subconsciously fixated on. The soldier has a crimson bubble thinking of a red high-heel shoe; the businessmen (appearing more sinister than satisfied) dream of gold bunnies; and a matronly woman ruminates on a gold cloud. Dietrich acknowledges her intention is to ‘mock’ these photographic images – which is a strong action to take. One wonders why a family member would seek to jeer at her ancestors (an action which would be anathema to many African or Asian traditions). Could it be part of a need to denigrate the Teutonic traditions post-Reich? I think she is caught between deifying and deconstructing: one child is embedded in gold like a Byzantine icon, while a baby, set in the lower left of a composition, stares out at us like a poltergeist, fading on the fuzzy folded felt upon which the image has been mounted.
Of course, integrating found objects from one’s life is a 20th century fixture in installation art, but Meyer has a sense of rhythm and gesture that takes what would ordinarily be a visual platitude to a more engaging level. Material Study #1, for instance, as it surges in and out of the wall, is a deft piece of handiwork and whimsy. I would say that Meyer might investigate how scale would affect the impact these studies might have on a space. I can imagine the pushpins regenerating themselves all over a floor, as an active presence, rather than the more passive, confined, to-be-gazed-at position they have in the VAE show. Meyer also has several drawings of wax and charcoal, of a sensitive touch, which resemble faint breaths upon the paper.
Overall, a nice poetic showing of two young artists—engendering the hope that we will see more of their process to come. Husk/Hive can be seen in VAE’s Mill Gallery Wednesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., or by appointment, through June 25.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Friday, June 11, 2010
PRESS RELEASE: Chicks and Ducks and Geese . . . Oh My! at Northeast Kingdom Artisans Guild in St. Johnsbury
From June 22 through August 7 the Northeast Kingdom Artisans Guild will host a multi-media exhibition celebrating the diverse world of poultry. The public is invited to meet the artists and enjoy wine and cheese at a reception on June 26 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm. The Northeast Kingdom Artisans Guild (802-748-0158) is located at 430 Railroad St., St. Johnsbury and is open Monday-Saturday from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm.
Artists from the Northeast Kingdom and across the state will express their joy and delight in chickens of all shapes, colors, and sizes, as well as ducks and geese domestic and wild . . . and maybe even emus, guinea fowl, and wild turkeys. Here a chick, there a chick captured in ceramic baking dishes, felted place mats, block prints, paintings in watercolor and oil, hooked rugs, and sculpture. Some of our best photographers will present stunning photographs of wild ducks and geese. If you love to watch the antics of your back yard chickens, if you have ever had your socks nipped at by a couple of domestic geese, if you thrill to see a flock of wild turkeys grazing in an open field, if a raggedy ribbon of honking geese makes your heart skip a beat, this is a show you won't want to miss.
Image: Strutting by Kitty O'Hare
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Date: June 3, 2010
Contact: Tracy Martin, Assistant State Curator
Annette Lorraine, Mixing it Up: a land conservationist blends watercolor and work at the Governor’s Office for June and July.
A show of watercolors by Annette Lorraine will be on display at the Governor’s Office on the fifth floor of the Pavilion Building in Montpelier, through July 29.
A real estate attorney by day, Annette Lorraine works to conserve rivers, farms, woodlands and trails. She is passionate about the sky, water, soils, and the people who keep Vermont’s land-based economy alive. An artist by night, Lorraine resides in Peacham, where she uses the same waters that run through our rivers to moisten her palette. “Earth’s minerals” she notes, “become my pigments.”
This dual life, reminds the artist “that diversity is good: in ecosystems and society, work and play. I splash color, a little light, and a lot of hope for our fragile yet resilient state.”
Annette Lorraine will donate 10% of all sales from this exhibit to the Vermont River Conservancy, “protecting exceptional lands along our waters.” www.vermontriverconservancy.org. She encourages support of all Vermont nonprofits dedicated to protecting our special places.
The Governor’s Office gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. A photo ID is required for admittance.
Saturday, June 5, 2010
The T.W. Wood Gallery and Arts Center space, located on the campus of the Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier, is the biggest and most elegant exhibition facility in central Vermont. However, shows there have often not looked their best because the historic building’s owners insist that nothing be affixed to the walls, so paintings have to be hung on long wires hooked to picture rail. Why is this a problem? Because it doesn’t allow framed work to sit tight to the wall, the tops lean away from the wall and there are always those distracting wires sprouting above every work. But the current exhibit at the Wood is one of the best I’ve ever seen there, in part because panels (left in place following the annual high school art exhibit) are suspended from the rail to allow wall-mounted work to actually be affixed to the wall; this is a clean, beautifully hung show.
Of course the work itself is the primary concern, and it is top-notch. Catherine Hall’s wax-covered objects and Axel Stohlberg’s constructions are extremely compatible. Each artist has half the large gallery space, and all the work is confident, perfectly executed, engaging, and beautifully arranged. Interestingly, both artists’ three-dimensional work is figurative (Hall: faces, Stohlberg: houses), while their two-dimensional work is primarily abstract.
On the gallery’s east wall Hall shows ten wall-hung cases of faces in plaster, gouache, and encaustic wax, titled with reference to their colors (Turquoise Faces, Yellow Faces, etc.). At the end of the row, Spotted Faces draws us across to the west wall, and what Hall describes as her most recent work, eight encasements of faces in black, white, and subtle earth colors. This is a series of pieces called Fossil Faces and Broken Faces that seem to me her strongest work, primitive in feeling, that suggest early human works of plastic art in clay and stone. The surface treatment employs lines, dots, and craquelure.
Fossil Faces I, in particular, with its tight grouping of small and large heads (many mottled, as though with pox) is particularly powerful, a display thick with dotted faces in a splendid variety of textures and varieties of black, white, and grey.
On the south wall of the gallery, Hall shows two pieces that are much more lighthearted, like a trip to the toy store – Menagerie (2007-2010) and Doll’s Clothes and Cabinet (undated).
Axel Stohlberg's side of the Main Gallery is dominated by two large structures, including a set of accordion panels with a profusion of 33 pieces he calls Marquettes (below). These gems are for sale at $65 each, and many had already been sold when I visited shortly after the opening. Which brings me to another need to digress: Why is it that three-dimensional work is always priced relatively lower than drawing and (especially) painting? Is it because people are more inclined to buy something that doesn’t take up much room? Do people think it takes more skill to make paintings than sculptures? Is it the notion that only painting is “real” art? I don’t know, but I keep seeing this disparity, for example in Stohlberg's pricing in this exhibit...
But back to business: In the northeast corner of the gallery Stohlberg has created a dramatic installation called BIG HOUSE (at right), constructed of wood, windows, and screen doors. On the inside, the words HOME, HOUSE, NEST, and SHELTER are inscribed with china marker. This wonderful construction is monumental in size and concept, while at the same time delicate and fragile, much like familiar childhood memories of home.
In other medium-sized pieces mounted on pedestals, houses teeter precariously on wobbly structures, are studded with nails, or scoot away on wheels. Stohlberg has a genius for finding and using found objects, making them (with the addition of wire, tiny plastic figures, or odd bits of hardware) achingly tender statements of psychological truth with a side helping of humor and playfulness. That’s not something that many artists can pull off.
In this same corner, all Stohlberg’s two-dimensional work also employs the House theme, grouped by media, including reworked monoprints, acrylic and graphite, china marker on black paper, oil pastel, and charcoal. Houses tumble, multiply, and drift out of focus. In Yellow II and Night Light, a house actually appears to be acting as a beacon, radiating light. Again, Stohlberg dishes up some profound stuff about home-and-hearth (and what they refer to, such as the self, stability, “home is where the heart is”, etc.) in a subtle sideways fashion, without preaching or over-determining. Other 2-D works, on the west wall, are from his series of boats, canoes, and vessels.
The South Gallery, a smaller room behind the large Main Gallery, contains nine mixed media pieces by Stohlberg, two on the theme of the four seasons, while Hall’s 14 pieces called Icons use oil, glass beads (such as are used on reflective signs), and gold leaf. These works are loose grids of intense pigments with incised lines and a subtle sheen from the glass beads. Six small vertical icons make a pleasing grouping, emphasizing the soft vertical bands of color. Also holding them together as a group is the inclusion of a rectangular area of cadmium red in each image, which causes the eye to flit around from one red spot to another until it comes to rest in the lower right piece, where the red is softened and sweetened by an overlay of the ground glass beads.
This is a great exhibit to move through in whatever order you please, and the journey will be decidedly worthwhile. Catherine Hall and Axel Stohlberg’s work will be on exhibit at the T.W. Wood Gallery and Arts Center in Montpelier from May 25th to July 18th 2010. Hours are Tuesday-Sunday, 12-4. I’ve found that sometimes on weekends the gallery may be closed, so you might want to call 828-8743 to make sure before traveling a distance.
Images: Top (visitor viewing Catherine Hall's encasements) and bottom (The exhibit artists, Catherine Hall and Axel Stohlberg) courtesy of Kevin Beauchamp. Remainder: Janet Van Fleet
Friday, June 4, 2010
POULTNEY - In her art, Vermont artist Linda Durkee seeks to "celebrate the power of beauty and communicate the energy of joy." "Art from Life," an exhibit opening at Green Mountain College's Feick Fine Arts Center May 24, features her mixed media collage. The opening reception is June 4 from 5 - 7 p.m. Refreshments will be served.
Linda, who returned to Vermont in 2001, has been a painter for 29 years. She studied art privately in Washington D.C. while juggling work as a journalist at the Bureau of National Affairs in Washington D.C. She also served as a speechwriter at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and from 1998 - 2000 led a global communications effort at the U.N. Environment Program in Geneva, Switzerland.
Linda's work is included in private collections in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and Asia. She has been featured in solo and group shows at venues across Vermont and in Washington D.C. and Chicago.
"In my paintings and collages, I combine vibrant colors with dynamic shapes to capture landscapes and mindscapes," she says in her artist statement. "My pen and ink drawings speak to intellectual and emotional journeys. I am engaged in projects to combine my art and writing."
The Feick Fine Arts Center is open from Monday - Friday from 1 - 5 p.m. "Art from Life" will be on display through June 25.
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Work by S. R. Wild will be on exhibit at the offices of the South End Arts and Business Association (SEABA), 180 Flynn Ave, Burlington from June 1 - August 30, 2010.
There will be an Artist's opening on Friday, June 18th. 5:30 to 8:30 PM at the SEABA Office Gallery.
S.R. Wild primarily works in collage and assemblage. Much like the medium he works in, the subject of his work is a combination of experiences, failures, and observations presented in a self-deprecating, irreverent, contradictory, and humorous way. A collector of the damaged, decayed, and rejected; his materials are mainly found objects and ephemera gleaned from gutters and trash bins.
As a lover of language and typography, which stems from his career as a graphic designer, words and letters often appear in his work.
art + graphic design + junk www.srwild.com
Ms. Gabriel and Ms. Bowring first met thirty-five years ago when they mounted an exhibition of their work in Moscow, Vermont. Soon after, Ms. Bowring relocated to Richmond, Virginia where she teaches painting at Virginia Commonwealth University. Despite the separation of several hundred miles the two friends, both graduates of Vermont’s Goddard College, have maintained a close relationship during the ensuing years. While never working in the same medium their current two-person exhibit is a celebration of lasting art and friendship.
For the current exhibition, PLEASURE, Ms. Bowring will be showing saturated, abstract paintings loosely inspired by food. Ms. Gabriel will be exhibiting archival pigment ink digital prints from an on-going series, titled Dreaming.
215 College Gallery is located at 215 College Street, in Burlington, Vermont. Gallery hours are Fridays from noon through 8 pm, Saturdays noon through 6 pm, and Sundays noon through 4 pm or by appointment.