Art Review

Portraits of Women

Persona: Process Portraiture
Through April 28th

Curated by T. Michael Martin, Persona: Process Portraiture features four distinctly different artists who embrace, reflect upon and reject the preconceptions of identity. A smartly installed exhibition, it includes numerous works in a variety of grids and patterns without ever looking too crowded or overwhelming. I was even reminded, when I first arrived at street level to ascend the two flights of painted gray and well worn stairs, of the heyday of 1970s SoHo art scene when it was common to visit 2nd, 3rd, and 4th floor galleries by climbing creaky, uneven battleship grey stairs. Read more »

Vir Heroicus Sublimis

"The first man was an artist." Barnett Newman

Before there were fertile grounds growing olives and grapes, before the ages of kings and kingdoms, and long before the shifting of countries and armies when war defined the Valley, the caves were the locus of the wandering tribes who would one day be called "human." Read more »

Natural Order of Things

Natural Impact
Curated by D. Dominick Lombardi
The Arsenal Gallery, NYC
Thru April 26th

D. Dominick Lombardi has curated a great show at the Arsenal Gallery in Central Park off of Fifth Avenue. On view through April 26th featuring the work of Tim Daly, Cecilia Whittaker Doe, Jodie Mim Goodnough, Brant Moorefield, Lina Puerta and Dominick Rapone. A show of work imagining that, although the relationship between humanity and nature is seen as having rivaling needs, here the two forces are depicted growing together in dialectical resolution. Read more »

Postsensical

Unreality Bomb
Thru April 15th

Young Americans in their tweens have adopted a deliberate stupidity as a form of humor. You can see it on TV in shows like Uncle Grandpa. It's a simply executed cartoon where the protagonist talks and acts like an idiot but often with benign results. It’s a Post-sensical psychedelic show on Comedy Central. Fashion-wise girls wear sweatshirts that say -- "I'm sorry I'm late. I didn’t want to come"... Boys wear t-shirts with the wrong band name for the image. Like a Smiths shirt with a picture of Mark E Smith. Read more »

Pattern Power, Chaos and Quiet

There are little gems to be taken away from “Pattern, Power, Chaos and Quiet," a show featuring the challenging work of eight very different artists. Curator D. Dominick Lombardi has responded to the idea of landscapes as an ongoing internalization of the idea of nature and an engagement with nature with art as its portal. If art constructs a world, Lombardi’s installation is a way of putting together a scene from that world...it is a fantastic palette and inspiration providing us with an in-depth look at choice artists, their use of various techniques, and how that gives way to drama and harmony. Read more »

Exploring The World of Francine Tint

Explorations: Francine Tint
Cavalier Gallery, NYC
2/28 - 3/24, 2018

Cavalier Gallery presents Explorations, a series of large-scale acrylic on canvas paintings by Francine Tint. This exhibition provides an opportunity to take notice and ask, what attributes separate the masterful from the mundane, in a city that has placed gestural abstraction on the international art map. It comes as no surprise that the artists’ temperament plays a crucial role. Francine Tint is an artist who transcends skillful manipulation of materials to disclose the reality beneath the surface of everyday things. She imbues the works with her inner being by painting at the height of her emotions, to create a revealing catalogue of impulses and feelings that connect the canvases to enduring works of authentic artists through time. Read more »

Semiotexting and Snorealism on Instagram

Like many people who like to look at art and write about it, I don’t have time to go to galleries, I work too much. But I do find time to look at paintings on Instagram. This is my take on the work that I see there. It's never going to be the same as experiencing it live, my read is bound to be limited. This is a skim, a study of tendencies if you like. Read more »

Vanity Fair VI: Hannah Kallenbach + Bradley Rubenstein

Hannah Kallenbach is a Brooklyn-based performance artist whose primary interest is in female grossness and exploring ways to reclaim the fetishization of her own body. She recently staged “Re:” at Vital Joint in Brooklyn, and "2 girls 1 hotdog" premiered at The Glove as part of The Exponential Festival. Hannah is associate directing the Shakespeare in the Square's food-fight-inspired production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream touring at the end of March through April. Read more »

Art As Liberty

Helene Pavlopoulou: Dithyrambs of Liberty

Helene Pavlopoulou’s Dithyrambs of Liberty series fits into the post-modern art paradigm in that it is inclusive of other cultures and periods. Globalization with its many cultural influences has impacted not only her work, but that of most artists around the world. This blurring of borders, geographies, cultural tendencies, and categories has been the cause for Pavlopoulou’s fluid re-creation of an artistic language that addresses contemporary issues like alienation, the electronic revolution, and political turmoil. Read more »

A Talent To Amuse

Andrew Heard 21st August 1958 - 9th January 1993

The artist Andrew Heard was a combination of contrasts, contradictions and charm. Although his large immensely detailed canvases referenced quintessentially English topics, it is a testament to their brilliance of construction that the viewer didn't need to know who his subjects were in order to be engaged by them. Usually British actors, comedians and neglected television personalities held centre stage. It helped, enhanced and enriched the viewing experience if you knew them, but as he was more successful in Europe, the references were secondary to the visual impact of the work. Heard had more recognition in Germany where his paintings sold well via the Friedman-Guinness Gallery in Frankfurt, he also exhibited at Turske & Turske in Zurich, where the essentially English comic Arthur Askey held little in the way of a visual translation abroad. His work was initially monochromatic and stark but developed into a cavalcade of color. Andrew Heard's pictures are layered, complex and deeply emotional, littered with references both subtle and profane. The term exquisite could be applied to many of his works. They remain a gift to the eyes. Read more »

Pox Populi

Yayoi Kusama
David Zwirner Gallery, NYC
Thru December 16th, 2017

Spots are a disease -- a "Pop Art" pox; a sign of madness, an hallucination. As Tony Hancock says in his brilliant comic movie The Rebel (1961) where he plays a modern artist: "I get the spots before my eyes, the red mist, and I'm off."

Yayoi Kusama is off again at David Zwirner Gallery on 533 West 19th Street in Chelsea. You will have to queue around the block to see her new installations. But you can just walk into a room on 19th street and see 66 of her new paintings. This is a review of the work in that room. Read more »

Little Q & A: Mary Hrbacek + Bradley Rubenstein

Mary Hrbacek is an artist and an art critic (AICA) based in NYC. In 2016 she received the Carole A. Feuerman Sculpture Foundation, ESKFF Foundation, The Helis Foundation, Financial Grant for her art on view at Mana Contemporary. Her drawings in "Whispers" have been included in the collection of The Museum of Contemporary Art of Crete.

Bradley Rubenstein: These are quite lovely; I did see one of your shows a year or two back at CREON, they had a remarkable clarity, and reminded me of Georgia O’Keefe’s work -- there is a very large O’Keefe in the Art Institute of Chicago, a sky, with strange biomorphic clouds. It is a strange painting, and growing up in Chicago, held my attention for years. I don’t want to get to far ahead of myself here, so let’s start with a little background… Read more »

Black Art is the New Black Music

I cannot believe that even the most devout American fascist has not danced or punched their fist in the air to a song created by African American musicians; at a prom, at a frat party or a wedding. "1999" by Prince, "Rock n Roll" by Chuck Berry, "Nutbush City Limits" by Ike and Tina Turner. Black music is an ever-present treatise on American life. Read more »

A Prayer for the Souls in Purgatory

Tony Moore: Sculpture - Children of Light
Sideshow Gallery, Brooklyn
Though November 12th, 2017

Fallen empires, lost peoples, ancient cultures and what they once produced -- like fallen leaves and dead trees -- comprise the very ground we walk upon. What has passed before, what Tony Moore refers to as “the relationship of humanity and nature," that magnificent mix of man and mother earth is at the core of his content. There is that sense of monumentality, that massiveness of told and untold history that we might feel, what Moore gathers in through direct experience, cognitive or corporeal, as he builds up and cuts away with and within his earthen clay is his expression. He remains connected, as we all should, to the past as there is an endless life energy that both stirs and cleanses Moore’s thoughts and imaginings. To Moore, all cultures, all systems and societies past and present are part of a continuous need to feel connected and complete. It is also vital that we have hope and that we stand up for unity and understanding so good can triumph over evil intent and oppression. Read more »

When the Saints (and Sinners) Go Marching In

D. Dominick Lombardi: Saints, Sinners, and the Collective Unconscious (2014-2017)
Hampden Gallery
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA

Saints, Sinners, and the Collective Unconscious is riveting. Mr. Lombardi is an artist with an intimate understanding of history in regard to religion and popular culture. After careful viewing of the 30 works in the exhibition, I was compelled to research the titles of the works because they seemed to hold the key to unlocking Lombardi’s intentions. I focused on the works in the Saints section of the exhibition because I found their cryptic iconography most intriguing. The research of the saints depicted in Lombardi’s work opened up a new route for me to access the works’ meaning. Read more »

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