Tuesday, April 29, 2014

April Downtown Gallery Crawl

Baron Batch (left) and Kurt Shaw (right)<br> Live painting and finished painting at Shaw Galleries
Baron Batch (left) and Kurt Shaw (right)Live painting and finished painting at Shaw Galleries

I'm sure it wasn't intentional, but there were three venues during the Gallery Crawl that featured live art production during the Gallery Crawl. "interiorActive" had an assembly of artists at Wood Street Galleries, and there was a special CD release party at 937 Liberty Ave that featured a team of artists collaborating on a piece.

Shaw Galleries also had a painting demonstration. In the above images, Baron Batch is at his easel (left) and posing with Kurt Shaw and the finished painting (right). This is an intimate space, but Baron Batch transported a mini-studio to the gallery. He invited questions from the spectators, flinging responses over his shoulder. He has a very vigorous working style; you could hear his implements on the canvas as he worked.

TK Mundok
TK Mundokat
937 Liberty, 2nd fl
I stopped by 937 Liberty Ave. for Bricolage's "immersive experience", but the sign up sheet was already filled! Ah well, my loss. Next time, I'll get there early enough. Upstairs was the The Orange Experience. The exhibit was a collaborative between Sound Elevator and a group of local artists; Tk Mundok (left) was among them. Lovely work! I enjoyed the exhibit quite a bit. There was a nice variety of work, and orange is my favorite color. This gallery has several images from the exhibit.

A couple other events were fun to check out. The Trust Education Center played host to a city-wide show of student work. It's always nice to see the efforts of young artists. The Night Market was back after a winter hiatus. Always good to see, I love the downtown and Garfield versions of this event. There are images from both of these events in this gallery.

There were a couple of other shows that I'll come back with sometime in the next week or so. For those of you that are keeping track, Unblurred is coming up this Friday. Rain or shine, I'll be there!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Art All Night 2014

Art All Night has been in the same place for the last few years; two blocks from my house. So, there's no excuse for me to not rouse myself and head over to soak up some ART.

The building is practically under the George Washington Crossing bridge, about 100' away from the shore of the Allegheny River. Sounds perfect until yo.u realize there's no immediate parking. Our little block was packed with cars all night! We had a steady stream of traffic all day during drop-off and all night as people came and went to see the show or listen to music. Or both. The building is part of what used to be a steel mill. It's huge, which is great because the crowds the event draws is pretty spectacular.

Since this is an open-hang, the work spans the range from amateur to practiced artist. It's also hung very quickly, with intake ending at 2pm and the event beginning at 5pm. The only delineations made are between adult content and everything else. So, the show is mounted by filling the boards as it arrives. You're apt to see a drawing by a middle-school student sharing space with a veteran artist.

It's fun to wander around, looking for familiar work, finding some work that is pretty spectacular, or something that was submitted by one of your neighbors. Which is exactly what happened last night. What was also surprising was that the quality of the work was actually pretty good, and so many local, practicing artists participate.

There were lots of opportunities for hands-on activities for everyone. One that I liked was a series of windows mounted on stands. You were invited to write all over them, and when they got to covered up, a volunteer came through and cleared the window. There were a couple of pop-tents and canopies that the kids were wandering through. I'm sure they had fun, but it was obviously too small for me!

The volunteers did an amazing job, putting this event together. All of the work was clearly labeled, which is a monumental task in itself! Getting the show installed must have been pretty wild. I know that the screens go up over a couple of days, and will take as long to come down. All of those that helped out are just the best art brigade! Congratulations to all of you on yet another successful edition of Art All Night.

The below gallery contains descriptions, in case you want to hear more!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Structure at ModernFormations

Structure at ModernFormations
Structure at ModernFormations

Where have the last two weeks gone? I had said I would continue with posts about April's Unblurred and here it is, days before Structures closes! It's such a terrific show, too.

I spoke to Ron Copeland at the opening, and he told me that this particular group of artists have shown together several times. Maybe that's why the show is so tight. In this edition, all of the members seem to be working with habitats in some form or other. So, with a diverse base of mediums, the artists have brought their own concepts to the exploration of abodes.

Megan Herwig | Uninhabited Lands
Megan Herwig | Uninhabited Lands

I really liked these assemblages from Megan Herwig (pictures above). Very clean, but with a nice amount of detail. They're sort of a DIY plan for some theoretical space. Also, Megan Shalonis has a piece in this exhibit too, along with her show at Mr. Roboto, just up the street.

It is short notice, but ModernFormations has regular gallery hours on Thursday. The gallery opens at 7pm, and this will be your last chance to see the exhibit.


Irina Koukhanova: Panoptic Landscape

Irina Koukhanova | The Lookout
Irina Koukhanova | The Lookout

Irina Kouhanova's Panoptic Landscape presents as a boldly graphic exhibit at first blush. The prints are stark in black, red and grey, the cast tiles are starkly simple, and the sculptures are strong punctuations.

The imagery pays tribute to solitary, wild hybrid man-bird figures. In some, the indication of man-made structures dominates. But there is a dystopian theme that runs through the landscapes and figures that populate it.

I like this singular approach to the discipline of printing. Ms. Kouhanova produced prints that were a combination of a couple of blocks, with variations in color and sequence.

Several sculptural works are included in the exhibit, many of which are fully integrated and free-standing. These incorporated multiple materials, with painted wood supporting smal cast bronzes. The imagery was consistent with the graphic themes in the prints.

Irina Kouhanova | Pomegranate I
Irina Kouhanova | Pomegranate I

There is one piece in the exhibit that really resonated with me. Pomegranate I is small, at about 16" in height (with the base, it's 22"). It has delicate patinas in green and red with bronze softly shimmering through. The light play along its twined and curved surfaces is restless and liquid, catching in the seeds of the pomegranate halves. It got in behind my eyes and pulled my stomach though my throat. It brought to mind all those things that I had conquered and the rest that remain.

Panoptic Landscape is a very strong show, and I would highly recommend taking a trip to BoxHeart to see it. The exhibit is open through May 16.

2014 Artist of the Year: Irina Kouhanova
Panoptic Landscape (Exhibit images)
On exhibit from March 18th through May 16th, 2014
BoxHeart Gallery

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Tony Feher @ The Akron Art Museum

I'm excited to see this show in Akron after missing his talked about retrospective at The Bronx Museum.

Tony was represented by the same gallery as me for a while.

An artist who stacks milk crates, hangs plastic bottles or places pennies on the floor creates a lot of eye rolls.
But spending time with the work often makes me see poetry and potential meaning in the most overlooked things.

My guess is this one is worth the trip.

Tony Feher

April 12, 2014 - August 17, 2014

Akron Art Museum

One South High, Akron, Ohio 44308
Gallery Hours
Wednesday - Sunday: 11 am - 5 pm
Thursday: 11 am - 9 pm
Closed Monday & Tuesday
Closed on most major holidays

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Spring Unblurred

OMG! What a great night on Penn Ave
OMG! What a great night on Penn Ave (Brian Kane installation on the MWFA facade)

I knew it was going to be great night when I got off the bus on Friendship and spotted that double rainbow. Sure, it was spattering a little, but it wasn't even bad enough to put up an umbrella.

My first stop was Garfield Artworks and the Pittsburgh Artists Against Fracking fundraiser. The gallery looked great, as did ALL of the donated art work. The final count was 78 donating artists, many of whom contributed multiple pieces. Kudos and roses for Bob Ziller, who coordinated the event, making sure that the gallery was in top shape for the opening. There are several pieces from the show included in the gallery at the end of this post. If you weren't able to make it to the opening, there will be a CLOSING PARTY on Monday, April 28th from 6 to 9 pm.

Matt Gatto | VIII
Matt Gatto VIII
 Meanwhile, next door at ImageBox, there was a wonderful little show of Matt Gatto's work: Diametric Forces. I was really struck by the wall pieces in this show. They were compact bursts of light and metal, very interesting to the eye. The exhibit is open through the month by appointment.

If you're planning on going to the Mr. Roboto Project over the next month, you'll have a chance to see Megan Shalonis' Mansion Apartment Shack House. These brightly painted assemblages are sweetly charming. Now, I am seriously old; I had never heard of the game that is referred to in the show title. I did look it up, though. It seems pretty popular, you should see the umpteen number of returns I got on search.

Anonymous Street Art
Anonymous Street Art
One of the the many things I like about traveling along Penn are the random acts of art, like the piece at the right. It was just such a bright bit of color in that grey night.

I stopped in at Edge Studio, but I must have missed the Pyrotopia promo. The doors were up, and the two artists that were there had a nice collection. Louis Boston the "Pi Guy" who does art from mathematical equations and anomalies, had a table of prints based on pi. The robot sculptures of Donald Jones were simply fun.

Stay tuned for part 2 of the first Springtime Unblurred. In the meantime, get ye to the Waterfront for the opening of Most Wanted Fine Art's new digs! The grand opening is this Saturday. More images from Unblurred are available in the slideshow. Image credit: Jason Sauer (for the OMG! image)

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Laura McLaughlin + Kevin Snipes | Flow: Recent Iterations in Clay

Laura McLaughlin + Kevin Snipes | Flow: Recent Iterations in Clay

Laura Jean McLauglin is a prolific artist, consistently producing quality ceramic works. Her works, while giving a passing nod to the humble platter and bowl, express a personal narrative through her graphic imagery and sense of color.

In Flow, there is a fair sampling of the colorful works that I have always appreciated. There is a bowl, Polka Vase, whose inside glowed with orange-y warmth. But I was really struck by her sculptures at Borelli Edwards. There were a few that I particularly liked, and they are included in the images at the end of this post.

I was particularly struck by Guerney for a Forest. The expression is enigmatic; the eyes aren't the same and you feel an intent regard. One eyebrow is raised, with an exaggerated arch that goes beyond mere doubt. The mouth is soft and belies the age of that wrinkled brow with its innocent youthfulness. It's an uneasy piece, with complex subtexts.

Included in the exhibit are a few collaborative works between McLaughlin and Bob Qualters. I've included an image below (titled Knowledge), and want to mention the there is a retrospective of Mr. Qualters' work at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts (closing April 20).

Flow continues through April 12 at Borelli Edwards Gallery in Lawrenceville.