Posts Tagged ‘Get Visual’

ArtBeat: Masterworks @ AIHA [Get Visual]

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016
This 1817 map of the proposed Erie Canal is part of Masterworks: Paper

This 1817 map of the proposed Erie Canal is part of Masterworks: Paper

By David Brickman

With trips to all the summer shows winding down, I’d like to recommend a really worthy exhibition closer to home. Actually, this is a pair of exhibitions with the unifying theme of a deep exploration of the collections of the now-225-year-old Albany Institute of History & Art, entitled Masterworks: 225 Years of Collecting and Masterworks: Paper.

These shows were mounted during the past year to celebrate the Institute’s anniversary and its own history, with the larger, more inclusive exhibition featuring a thoughtfully constructed timeline of the organization, punctuated with compelling artifacts and objects such as grandfather clocks, a book of wool samples, paintings from three centuries, marvels in glass and silver, a fire bucket, travel posters, etc.

The richness of the AIHA’s holdings is well displayed here, and would be difficult to exaggerate. Though I am biased toward contemporary art, I can enjoy a sumptuously festooned French-style bed as much as the next guy, along with almost absurdly decorative cast-iron stoves, Americana in the form of elaborately incised powder horns, ceramics from near and far, and plenty of earlier fine art.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

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ArtBeat: Swan Song [Get Visual]

Wednesday, August 24th, 2016
Installation view of Staying Power - photos provided by Albany International Airport Gallery

Installation view of Staying Power – photos provided by Albany International Airport Gallery

By David Brickman

It’s entirely appropriate that the final exhibition organized and installed by outgoing Director Sharon Bates at the Albany International Airport Gallery expresses the value of its title, “Staying Power.” Bates has the same qualities as the 11 venerable artists she has assembled for this excellent, elegant show – and she will no doubt amply demonstrate that in the next chapter of her life, when she sets forth in retirement as a full-time artist.

Her swan song is a paean to perseverance, a celebration of agelessness, a fascinating collection of excellence and diversity. The artists presented here have but two things in common: They are all located in the greater Capital Region; and they all have been at it for quite some time. Oh, and they’re all darn good. Naturally, I have my favorites among them, but I am reluctant to sully the unified purpose of this show by picking and choosing.

Instead, here’s an overview:

One feature of the show (which will hang through Monday, January 2, 2017) is a series of video interviews with the artists that has been placed on monitors in several spots throughout the gallery, as well as in a larger projection room. It underscores the purpose of the show to not only display the work these artists have created, but also to plumb their minds and their motives, as they discuss matters within the lifelong pursuit of an artistic career.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

STUDIO VISIT: Terrance DePietro & Nicole Lemelin [Get Visual]

Wednesday, July 27th, 2016
A view of the studio shared by Terrance DePietro and Nicole Lemelin

A view of the studio shared by Terrance DePietro and Nicole Lemelin (photo: TDP)

By David Brickman

A unique pleasure comes from visiting artists in their studios, as it is a privilege to step inside the process of a creative mind and get below the surface of the work itself. So, a few weeks ago, I took advantage of an opportunity to hang out with Terrance DePietro and Nicole Lemelin (and a few other guests) at their shared work/live space in rural Palenville, and it proved to be time very well spent.

DePietro and Lemelin joined forces a few years ago, while he was long established in Palenville and she was still living in her native Montreal, and they now have integrated their lives and art practice in a surprisingly seamless way. I had seen very little of either artist’s work before this foray to the Catskills, so I spent hours just taking it all in, punctuated by interludes of conversation and Niki and Terry’s kind hospitality.

These two mid-life painters share sensibilities so close that at first I had a little trouble telling their work apart (and that includes the vast majority of the work that was created before they even knew each other). But there are discernible differences (of course), even though the two are consistently driving at the same ideas. And, by “driving,” I mean working in a very directed and persistent manner.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual

ArtBeat: Summer Shows To See [Get Visual]

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016
Venus with an Organist and Cupid by Titan is on view at the Clark this summer.

Venus with an Organist and Cupid by Titan is on view at the Clark this summer.

By David Brickman

Summer has arrived, and it’s usual for a spate of blockbuster art exhibits to open at our region’s major museums. But, alas, this year is a disappointment – there’s no Van Gogh and Nature (which smashed box-office records at the Clark Art Institute last year); there’s no Modern Nature: Georgia O’Keeffe and Lake George (which put The Hyde Collection – and Glens Falls – at the center of the art world’s focus in 2013); and there’s no Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera (which exemplifies the drawing and staying power of a well-formed exhibition, as it went on tour from Stockbridge’s Norman Rockwell Museum in the summer of 2010 and, since then, has generated over 12,000 page views of my review.

The closest thing we have this year to a summer blockbuster is the Clark Art Institute’s Splendor, Myth, and Vision: Nudes from the Prado (which opened on June 11). However, in our age of ubiquitous Internet pornography, it is almost quaint in its outdated immorality, and rather uninspiring compared to the usual star-studded summer fare offered by Williamstown’s queen of art museums.

Instead, we seem to have a season of prints: The Hyde Collection in Glens Falls is presenting Dürer and Rembrandt: Master Prints from the Collection of Dr. Dorrance Kelly (set to open on Sunday, July 10) and the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown has Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec in Bohemian Paris (which opened last month), featuring posters, prints and drawings – but no paintings.

We also have a summer of outstanding contemporary art, in venues as diverse as the Albany International Airport Gallery; The School in Kinderhook; libraries in Albany and at Union College; small galleries in Lake George, Hudson and Schuylerville; and the vast MASS MoCA in North Adams, where conservative skeptics are won over every day by consistently excellent selection and installation of today’s most challenging living artists.

Here are my recommendations for summer viewing, in approximate descending order of scale:

1. Explode Every Day: An Inquiry into the Phenomena of Wonder, MASS MoCA through April, 2017. I could recommend this show on the basis of the title alone – but it includes a grand swath of international artists, at least one of whom I know I love, so there’s reason to believe it delivers on the promise. And there are nine (count ’em) other current exhibitions there as well. Just plain go.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

ArtBeat: “Borrowed Light” @ the Tang Museum [Get Visual]

Monday, June 6th, 2016
Installation view of Borrowed Light: Selections from the Jack Shear Collection (photo: Arthur Evans)

Installation view of Borrowed Light: Selections from the Jack Shear Collection (photo: Arthur Evans)

Review by David Brickman

The future looks pretty frightening at the moment, and personal legacies may seem like a shallow concern – but Jack Shear’s personal collection of photographs, a huge selection of which is on view at the Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs through Sunday, August 14, is an absolutely dazzling legacy.

Shear, who is the executive director of the Ellsworth Kelly Foundation, is also a photographer in his own right and has experience as a curator (this selection was co-curated by Shear and Tang Director Ian Berry). But this more-than-500-piece collection, donated in its entirety to the Tang last year, is what he will be remembered for, and with good reason.

Beginning in the 1840s with a vitrine full of Daguerreotypes, and continuing through the early 2000s, this compendium of the history of Western photography is a treasure trove that belongs at a teaching museum, where Berry and Shear contrived to place it at the fingertips of students, curators and scholars for the years to come. For now, we get to be those scholars, exploring about half the collection where it is gorgeously arrayed through the Tang’s entire second floor galleries, in pristine rows and heady constellations of cleanly framed prints.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual

Christo and Jeanne-Claude @ The Hyde [Get Visual]

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016
1976's Running Fence introduced the world to a new kind of environmental artist.

1976’s “Running Fence” introduced the world to a new kind of environmental artist.

By David Brickman

Heads-up! A traveling exhibition titled “Christo and Jeanne-Claude: The Tom Golden Collection” opened last Sunday (May 15) at The Hyde Collection in Glens Falls and will run just six weeks, through Sunday, June 26 – so I recommend you put it on your calendar now.

This event creates many associations for me, most delightfully bringing up the memory of renovations many years ago at the Hyde house that caused it to be fully wrapped in plastic for months on end. I wonder if Hyde administrators remember thinking then, as I did, that it looked just like a Christo project.

It’s also always a treat to see work by this curious duo who helped transform our conception of art from insisting on a housed display into a reluctant embrace of environmental installation on a scale beyond most of our imaginations. The fact that they could even conceive of building a curtain across a valley, or skirting eleven islands with pink polypropylene – much less actually doing it – is a testament to human ingenuity and persistence.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual

ArtBeat: Mohawk Hudson Regional Invitational @ Albany Center Gallery [Get Visual]

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016
Four very diverse artists are in this year's Mohawk Hudson Regional Invitational at ACG

Four very diverse artists are in this year’s Mohawk Hudson Regional Invitational at ACG

By David Brickman

One of the best shows each year at Albany Center Gallery is the annual invitational drawn from the Mohawk Hudson Regional. It’s a cool idea we don’t see often enough: Gallery representatives visit the big juried show and make notes on whose work they’d like to see more of, then ACG organizes an exhibition of those select picks.

This year’s MHRI at ACG includes four very diverse artists in terms of medium, style – even age – and that’s a good thing. As I am one of the gallery’s board members and the chair of the exhibits committee, I was involved in the selection process – so this won’t be a review. Instead, I will simply recommend the show and suggest you include it in your 1st Friday plans on May 6, when the artists’ reception will be held from 5 pm to 8 pm.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

ArtBeat: Susan Meyer’s “Formation Proposal” @ Courthouse Gallery [Get Visual]

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
Detail view of Shaft, laser cut acrylic, H-O scale figures, and aluminum

Detail view of “Shaft,” laser cut acrylic, H-O scale figures and aluminum

Review by David Brickman

Several times now I’ve seen one or two of Susan Meyer’s tiny, fantastical utopias and, every time, they fascinate. So I couldn’t bear to miss her solo show Formation Proposal at the Lake George Arts Project’s Courthouse Gallery in Lake George, which is on view only until Friday (April 15).

Meyer uses brightly colored acrylic sheets to build complex little spaces that are populated in this show by miniature nude figures. Her sense of color and form is outstanding, and she fully exploits the way light penetrates these stacks of stripes.

Though dates were not provided for the pieces on view, they seem fresh – especially the central piece – titled “Together” – which is more airy than dense, with a limited palette of white, yellow and blue, and is suspended from the ceiling, so it floats as if in zero-gravity. As one gallery-goer commented during my visit, it looks like The Jetsons. There’s a playfulness here not completely opposed to that favorite 1960s cartoon – but there is also a slightly ominous dystopian feeling to the worlds Meyer creates, adding to their mystique.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

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