This was the Facebook announcement for our Bloggers' Guide to Art Miami. We weren't sure exactly who would show up, but as the group (below) assembled, we turned out to be an assortment and combination of artists, collectors, bloggers, dealers, and Franklin's Einspruch's lovely parents.
Some of the group that assembled
Every year Sharon Butler and I—informally known as Art Bloggers @—organize a blogger event atone of the art fairs. It's a good opportunity to bring together friends old and new who are interested in art and art blogging. In 2009 We organized a well-attended blogger panel at Art Miami. This year we were invited back. Our idea this time was to take the group into the fair itself, a walk-and-talk, so a Bloggers’ Guide to Art Miami was conceived.
When a personal relocation redirected Sharon’s attention,our good friend Franklin Einspruch—artist, blogger and art critic—stepped in. We made a good team, Franklin and I. We reconnoitered the fair on Thursday in advance of our tour the following day. Over lunch we mapped out a plan, and when our group showed up 40 strong the next day, we took to the aisles.
What follows is a bit of what took place.
Titian, Saint Sebastian, 1530, Edelman Arts, New York City
"Titian! This, I wasn't expecting at an art fair!" said Franklin. "The execution is superlative, the painting is in excellent condition, and the serene look on the saint's face as he regards the arrows embedded in his flesh is quite a testament to faith."
You expect to see Picassos and Matisses at this fair, but a Titian was a first for this or any Miami art fair. This one, from the private collection of the dealer, was the centerpiece of an exhibition that explored the male figure and the biblical/art historical theme. .
Above and below
Contemporary interpretations flank the master: Christopher Winters above; Michael Murphy below
Louise Nevelson, Scott White Contemporary, San Diego
We stopped in front of this Nevelson, Mirror Shadow XXXIX, 1987. I had been seeing a number of big black objects at the various fairs (post coming), and Nevelson is the queen of big black objects. It was an opportunity to foreshadow a coming post—this was a bloggers' tour, after all—and for us to view up close, unencumbered by guards, work that is normally seen in a museum. Indeed, one of the surprises for a first-time fairgoer has to be the number of museum-quality works on display.
Rana Rochat, David Lusk Gallery, Memphis
Several of artists in the group were specifically interested in encaustic, and as the author of The Art of Encaustic Painting, the first commercially published book on the topic, I was happy to oblige.
We stopped in front of this work by Rochat. What strikes me is the transparency of the color and delicacy of the gesture, and the way Rochat develops the image above and below the surface, allowing you to float visually within and through the work. Encaustic is a difficult medium to master because the molten wax begins to harden the moment it leaves its heat source. Rochat, working large, maintains the medium's fluidity on a surface that's close to five feet wide.
Chris Antemann, Ferrin Gallery, Pittsfield. Mass.
Franklin directed the group to the Ferrin Gallery booth, where Chris Antemann's work was featured: "I'm interested in these gender-bent riffs on Baroque French porcelain, executed with the merest hint of California Funk."
Antemann examines gender roles through the medium of porcelain, specifically 18th century mises-en-scènes that embrace sexuality, androgeny and politics. (In a lovely bit of androgeny, Franklin referred to Chris as "he" and was quickly set right by Leslie Ferrin. Indeed, one of the nice things about the tour was the willingness of the dealers to get involved in the conversation.)
In keeping with our blogger theme, gallerist Leslie Ferrin noted several cyber venues for additional information: the gallery'sFacebook page, and Artberkshires, which posted about the fair
Franklin Einspruch and Leslie Ferrin
Photo courtesy of group member JK Russ
Franklin talking about a Charles Hewitt woodblock print (with me looking on) at Jim Kempner Fine Art, New York City
Photo courtesy of group member JK Russ
"We ignored a Chuck Close serigraph to look at a delightful, warm Hewitt. I have failed to convince the woman in the hat about anything I'm saying," said Franklin.
At Modernism, Inc., San Francisco
Franklin is holding forth about Georges Valmier, the center piece on the top row of the left-hand wall: "Part of the fun of fair-going is finding neglected but worthy figures in art history."
Jasmina Danowski at Spanierman Modern, New York City
Franklin admiring the right half of a diptych. "Danowski makes her own inks and works with acrylic resins and other unusual mediums on paper to make lovely floral abstractions." .
The group waxed and waned as we made our way from stop to stop. Here it was quite large (waxy?) as we made our way over to the our next stop, the Bridgette Mayer Gallery booth, below
Kenneth Noland, Blue Painted Blue, 1959, Bridgette Mayer Gallery, Philadelphia
Pat Steir painting to the left of the Noland, Eileen Neff to the right
Photo courtesy of Bridgette Mayer Gallery
Gallery owner Bridgette Mayer talked about how and why she selected these works for the booth. "We built the installation around the Kenneth Noland painting, which is the centerpiece," she said. Working with the Noland, a Pat Steir (visible above and below to the left of the Noland), a Sam Francis (not shown) and a Jim Dine (far left, below), something of a landscape theme emerged within a larger context of curvilinear lines and the grid.
From left: Dine, Charles Burwell, Steir, Noland
Photo courtesy of Bridgette Mayer Gallery
Charles Burwell, Large Overlay No 1, Black and Tan, 2011, acrylic on canvas, converses with Pat Steir's Gold and SIlver Moon Beam, 2006, oil on canvas
I particularly like the relationship of Burwell and Steir, with the subtle vertical rhythm of the works, each marked by a strong central division
View from inside the Bridgette Mayer booth. Foreground, Steve Tobin sculpture; Neil Anderson, Summer Evening, 2011; Jim Dine, Four Palettes, 1963
Panning to the other side of the Noland painting, with Steve Tobin sculpture and Paul Oberst grid construction. (See the Oberst work in the contect ofThe World Wide Web)
Photo courtesy of Bridgette Mayer Gallery
Bridgette Mayer talking to the assembled group
Below: the group
Photo courtesy of group member Melanie Matthews
Nice touch: At the end of the tour we walked over to the cafe, where Art Miami had coffee and a table waiting for us
Around the table: Barry Fellman, director of the Center for Visual Communication, Miami, and Tim Tate, whose work I showed in the Aqua Art post
Between them in the distance: Dani Marti woven bungee-cord sculptures at Lausberg Contemporary, Toronto and Dussendorf
Swinging around: artist Kate Kretz to my right, and to her right, artist/blogger Jami Nix Rahn of Art South Florida
"Summer Studio Salon" at Marcia Wood Gallery, Atlanta
Marcia Wood is showing an ever-changing selection of works on paper by gallery artists. Here, my "Swipe 6," 2014, oil on prepared paper, 30 x 22 inches. Click pic for more info
"Swept Away" at Hunterdon Art Museum Through Sept. 7
The second installation of "Swept Away" is on exhibition at the Hunterdon Art Museum in Clinton, New Jersey, through September 7. The show was curated by Michael Giaquinto for the Cape Cod Museum of Art last May to run concurrently with the Seventh International Encaustic Conference. With the new venue we have a second edition of the catalog (which you can view online at no charge). Here, my "Rummu." Click pic for more info.
"Summer Invitational" at Elizabeth Harris Gallery Reviewed in Hyperallergic
Click pic for a review, "Profaning Geometry, Venerating Uncertainty," by Peter Malone. Here, three paintings from my "Chromatic Geometry" series, 2013 and 2014, encaustic on panel
Looking for my coverage of the Miami Art fairs? Click the pic to access a full list of this year's posts (or click onto "Art Fairs" under the header for eight years' worth of reports). Here, Cary Smith, David Deutch and Todd Chilton at Feature, Inc., at NADA
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In the Studio
After a few false starts with the title, this series of 25 graphite-on-paper drawing is officially "Diamond Lattice." This is is #22, 2012, with micaceous pigment and cold wax, 30 x 22 inches. Click pic to see more work from the series
Recent: Buddy of Work
Henry Samelson asks artists to show two images: their primary work and a peripheral or related project. The connections are interesting. My own "buddies" are posted now. Click pic to link
Now: Adler & Co. Gallery
An ever-changing installation of paintings from my "Silk Road" series is up now at Adler & Co. Gallery, 77 Geary Street, San Francisco. Photo courtesy of Adler & Co. Gallery
"Textility," curated by Mary Birmingham and myself for the Visual Art Center of New Jersey, Summit (where Birmingham is the chief curator), looked at contemporary painting, sculpture and work on paper in which textile elements were referenced or employed. The exhibition is over, but you can see this exhibition on line. Click on the links below to read and see more.
Click pic to access review. Then click on page images to enlarge them for legibility
Thank You, Ivan
Ivan Karp, legendary art dealer, 1926-2012. Photo by Melanie Eve Barocas. Click pick for my tribute to Ivan, where your comments are welcome
New Digital Prints
Above, "Silk Trail 386." Below: "Silk Trail 339." Both 2012, unique digital prints on 11 x 8.5 inch archival Epson paper. Click either image to see more and find out where they are available
Miami Nice from Artcritical
December 2, 2011: “ . . . stand-out exhibits at Aqua included . . . the funky abstractionist stable of Conrad Wilde Gallery of Tucson, Arizona, amongst them the sensual encaustic monochromes of Joanne Mattera and the biomorphic reliefs of Ruth Hiller."--David Cohen, artcritical.com. Click pic for entire review. Above: John Dempcy, Hiller, Mattera
Miles Conrad, director of Conrad Wilde Gallery, Tucson, and me at the Aqua Art Fair. Photo: artcritical.com
Boston Globe Style Watch
November 13, 2011: Four of my small paintings are in this Cambridge apartment, which was the subject of a Style Watch feature. Click the pic to enlarge the image and read the story. Thanks to Arden Gallery, Boston, for representing me in Massachusetts (and beyond)
All texts and photography are by me unless otherwise noted. If you wish to excerpt a small portion of a post, you are free to do so under the Creative Commonsnon-commercial copyright--i.e. you must credit me as the author/photographer, and you must provide a link to my blog. Thanks.
My work is chromatically resonant, physically tangible, and compositionally reductive. I call it lush minimalism. But don't call me an "encaustic artist." While encaustic on panel is my primary means of expression, I approach artmaking in other mediums--acrylic on canvas, gouache on paper--in exactly the same way.
THE FIRST CONTEMPORARY BOOK ON ENCAUSTIC PAINTING. AND STILL THE BEST
My book, The Art of Encaustic Painting, was published by Watson-Guptill in 2001. It's the first commercially published book on contemporary encaustic. There are three sections: history, with images of the famed Greco-Egyptian Fayum portraits; a gallery of contemporary painting and sculpture (including the work of Jasper Johns, Kay WalkingStick, Heather Hutchison, Johannes Girardoni and myself), and technical information, including an interview with Michael Duffy, a conservator at the Museum of Modern Art.