Posts Tagged ‘Get Visual’

Fence 50 @ ACCR: Democracy in Action [Get Visual]

Monday, June 15th, 2015
Fence 50 installation view - Photos provided by the Arts Center of the Capital Region

Fence 50 installation view – Photos provided by the Arts Center of the Capital Region

Review by David Brickman

It’s been 50 years, and the Fence Show is still going strong at The Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy. I can remember in the early ’80s hanging the works on the spikes of the wrought-iron fence that gave the show its name, and it retains the wide-open feeling it had then of being a show for the people.

This year’s edition attracted 382 entries from a total of 237 artists, 40 of which were submitted by 33 K-12 students, and as is the tradition, all are on display in a jam-packed salon presentation (as seen in the photo above) through June 27. Such clutter would require a stepladder – and a lot of time – to properly peruse, but that’s what juror Julie Lohnes (curator of Union College’s collections and Mandeville Gallery) must have done in order to choose works for the Fence Select edition of the show and designate the prizes.

Such a democratic enterprise has its pluses and its minuses. The only requirement for inclusion is membership in the ACCR; it appears submissions were limited to two per artist, and I’m guessing there was a size limit – but otherwise, if you brought it, it got in. The result: Everybody gets to participate (yay!) but a fair amount of truly awful work is thereby presented, and even the best work pretty much gets overwhelmed by the swirling mass of media in the show.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

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Studio Visit: David Arsenault [Get Visual]

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015
Center of Attention - Oil on canvas by David Arsenault

Center of Attention – Oil on canvas by David Arsenault

By David Brickman

His work has been compared to that of Edward Hopper. He was voted “Best Visual Artist” by the readers of Metroland in 2002. And as a past president and Oakroom Artists stalwart for many years, he has shown a lot in Schenectady and just about everywhere else a painter can in the Capital Region. But David Arsenault has moved on – to Rockport, Mass. – and he’s not looking back.

I recently caught up with Arsenault in his newly opened gallery in Rockport, a sweet seacoast town on Cape Ann with beautiful harbors, rocky sea walls, inviting cafes, many galleries and a long history of resident painters. He moved there only last fall but has already immersed himself in the cultural scene and staked his claim to the town’s iconic “Motif #1,” a satisfyingly geometric red fishing shack (seen in the painting reproduced above).

Arsenault was pushed to this decision by a helpful interruption to a long career in publishing (he was trained at Sage College of Albany as a graphic designer) and pulled by an equally helpful wife who has often relocated and was ready to do it again. They landed well, renting a nifty wooden house in town and the crisp space that houses the gallery, where Arsenault has a well-lit painting loft and lots of nice walls to display his finished work, situated a stone’s throw from the Motif on a charming, touristy stretch called Bearskin Neck.

Click here to read the rest at Get Visual.

Jim Shaw: “Entertaining Doubts” @ MASS MoCA [Get Visual]

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015
Jim Shaw - The Rinse Cycle 2012 acrylic on muslin

Jim Shaw – The Rinse Cycle 2012 acrylic on muslin

Review by David Brickman

Have you ever tried to describe a crazy dream you had, or tried to follow someone describing such a dream? Then you will have some idea what it’s like to experience the large exhibition “Entertaining Doubts” by California artist Jim Shaw at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams. Shaw draws a great deal from his dreams and attempts to manifest them physically through sculpture, painting and installation.

Alas, it is not an entirely successful effort, just as none of us has ever really adequately articulated our own dream or understood another’s, but a lot of compelling and enjoyable art is created along the way, so it’s also not a failure. Shaw has great skills in drawing and painting, and a good understanding of the theatrics that go into effective installations, and MASS MoCA gives him plenty of space to spread out in.

A signature of the show is Shaw’s re-use of discarded painted theatrical backdrops. The worn texture of these huge curtains of muslin, and their time-softened colors, are very appealing, and Shaw makes the most of this appeal by limiting his interventions to partial overpainting or, in some cases, simple reinterpretation by the placement of flat figures in front. Shaw also takes smaller cuts of the backdrops and paints on them like stretched canvases. These are some of the best works in the show, perhaps because it is easier to digest them, or because smaller works can concentrate the idea better. (Mind you, in this context, small is relative: say, six feet rather than forty.)

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

Nicholas Krushenick @ Skidmore College’s Tang Museum [Get Visual]

Friday, April 10th, 2015
Installation view featuring the painting titled Electric Soup at left.

Installation view featuring the painting titled “Electric Soup” at left

Review by David Brickman

It was 1979: Punk rock was at its peak, rents in SoHo were still cheap, and Nick Krushenick was nearly a forgotten man. My college painting class was on a field trip to New York City, where a visit to Krushenick’s studio had been arranged. The artist showed little enthusiasm, reluctantly pulling a few paintings from a leaning stack, far less interested in talking about his work than he was in bragging about his son’s band, which had just cut their first record.

Flash forward to 2015, and the late Krushenick is now the subject of a solo show at Skidmore College’s Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, such a rarity that the 20 major pieces it has brought together represent the biggest collection of his work ever seen publicly. Nicholas Krushenick: Electric Soup, on view through Sunday, August 16, is a brash, bold exhibition that spans over 30 years of output with pristine, large-scale acrylics that appear so fresh they just about jump right off the wall.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

Adirondack Artists Guild’s 17th Annual Juried Art Competition [Get Visual]

Monday, March 23rd, 2015
BEST IN SHOW: Elaine Vollherbst - Highway 28N Long Lake

BEST IN SHOW: Elaine Vollherbst’s “Highway 28N Long Lake”

By David Brickman

Last weekend I had the privilege of driving up to Saranac Lake to judge the 17th annual Juried Art Competition at the Adirondack Artists Guild. When I arrived, the Guild’s gallery – a pleasant, functional storefront on Main Street – was crammed with 185 entries in all media. My job was to trim these submissions to about 75 for the show, and to choose prizes to be awarded at the show’s opening reception: Best in Show (which carries with it the opportunity to have a solo exhibition at the gallery in November); 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes; and five Honorable Mentions. Needless to say, it was a daunting task.

Here’s a first-person account:

Feeling a bit overwhelmed by the quantity (and overall quality) of the entries, I first sought to get my bearings. My hosts were three members of the Guild, a cooperative business whose 15 or so joint owners share the effort, expense, and rewards of such an enterprise, and they were graciously helpful throughout the process. They remained quietly alert as I worked my way around the room two or three times, occasionally answering questions I had as to certain relevant details. At this point, I had not yet begun to cut.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

The Best Films of 2014 [Get Visual]

Friday, February 20th, 2015
Patricia Arquette and Ellar Coltrane in Boyhood

Patricia Arquette and Ellar Coltrane in Boyhood

Reviews by David Brickman

With the awards season in full swing, I’m ready to weigh in on my favorite films of the past year. 2014 was an excellent year for movies, and that shows in the truly tough-to-handicap Oscar races. Luckily, I have so far seen six of the eight Best Picture nominees, and they are all worth the time. I’ve missed American Sniper and Selma, but plan to see the former very soon. As for the latter, I’m just not that interested in a dramatic alteration of Civil Rights history, so I’m skipping it.

1. Boyhood - How anybody can not be completely blown away by the achievement of this 12-year project by Richard Linklater is beyond me. It’s a drama about a kid growing up, in which all the actors actually age in real time through the course of the filming. More than that – it’s a really great life story, beautifully performed. Patricia Arquette will win the Oscar for this one, and if Linklater doesn’t, it’s simply wrong.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

ArtBeat: Mike Glier at Opalka Gallery [Get Visual]

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015
An image by Mike Glier

An image by Mike Glier

Review by David Brickman

The title of the current show at Sage College of Albany’s Opalka Gallerymeander, because you can’t see much while marching – could simply express a philosophy, but I feel it also aims to serve as a sort of explanation. This 35-year survey of Mike Glier – extended till Sunday (February 8) – features several rather disparate bodies of work – the titular meandering – each of which displays technical mastery, intellectual rigor, and engaged passion. Glier paints, brilliantly. Glier draws, with consummate ease. Glier conceptualizes, deeply and effectively.

But there remains the sticky problem of Glier’s diversity, and it can’t be overlooked. We want our artists clearly recognizable – the market dictates this, and people’s overworked minds and hearts demand it. How then do we view an artist who refuses to present a unified vision, who is – inconstant?

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

2014 Exhibition by Artists of the Mohawk-Hudson Region [Get Visual]

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015
Jeanette Fintz: Traveler's Reflection 3

Jeanette Fintz: Traveler’s Reflection 3

Review by David Brickman

The annual Exhibition by Artists of the Mohawk-Hudson Region, hosted this year by the Albany Institute of History & Art, raises the usual set of questions while presenting the usual confounding mash-up of regional art.

Popularly known as the Regional, this show has been running for nearly 80 years, making it one of the longest-standing exhibitions of its kind in the U.S. It’s always an annual high point for fans of the local art scene, and can be either a high point or a low point for participants, depending on their success in entering, personal taste, or overall degree of crankiness. This year’s edition was mounted on a later schedule than the usual summer appearance and will be up through Monday, January 19, affording a nice opportunity for the procrastinators among us to see it, even as 2015 has arrived.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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