Inside: At Daniel Weinberg Gallery, Los Angeles: Chris Martin paintings
Outside: The Ice Palace building, home to Pulse
Everything started out well enough at Pulse. After a tasty breakfast for the press outdoors under umbrellas, I entered the building and began the process of consuming some visual fare. The building where Pulse takes place is a large, high-ceilinged soundstage for TV and film, and booths are set up throughout. As I walked deeper into the building I noticed that the light was getting dimmer. In fact, some booths had no light at all. One section of booths was entirely in the dark. This is not a good way to view art.
No electricity also means no air conditioning, so it was getting uncomfortably hot. If it was difficult for me, I could only imagine what it was like for the dealers, many of whom had come thousand of miles and spent many thousands of dollars to set up. A few resourceful folks focused flashlights as makeshift spots, but that illumination was not nearly enough for the work to be seen properly. Work I sort of saw and liked, but have no way to show you, were Emil Lukas’s string paintings at Hosfelt Gallery (fortunately he had work at ABMB at Sperone Westwater), Elana Herzog's cloth-and-staple collages at LMAK Projects, Brian Dettmer’s books at Packer Schopf (he also had books in a gallery at Aqua Art), Johannes Girardoni's wax sculptures at PDX Gallery, and many others.
Let me take you on my trip into the heart of darkness and then out again:
The main walkway, with plenty of light and space
A peek into the booth of Thatcher Projects, New York: Lights are on and sunlight is streaming in. Bill Thompson sculptures, Robert Sagerman paintings
Lights were on in some booths, not in others. I heard that city workers had hit a cable, which clearly compromised some circuits. The Pulse people--whose own pulses must have been in the hypertensive range--calmly kept dealers apprised, and I overheard that they were bringing in generators
Above: Kliendeinst Gallery, Leipzig, had an eye-stopping wall, but the light seemed to stop at their booth
Below: Gallery Joe, Philadelphia, had light where its neighbors did not
Less than optimal viewing conditions here.
Packer Schopf Gallery, Chicago, made a valiant effort to illuminate the work
At Mixed Greens, New York: Sometimes the dark is exactly right, as here, for viewing Rob Carter's videos of grass growing
Hosfelt Gallery, New York, whose booth was in the dark, had a second space where the walls were meant to be dark--but lights were on
Above and below: Jim Campbell installation
The Daniel Weinberg Gallery, Los Angeles, had light in its booth. Still I pulled the image above from its website because I wanted you to see just how elegant it was. Chris Martin's painting, which opens the post, was on the other side of the big wall, but most of the work was small to easel size, as you see here, visually compelling, and arrestingly installed
Steve DeBenedetto painting top, with George Stoll wax glasses below; partially visible: a Thomas Nozkowski painting
Below: closeup of the Stoll sculptures
Foreground, two Andrew Masullo abstractions; middle ground: three Darby Bannard abstractions; far left: Thomas Nozkowski
At Kudlek Ven Der Grinten Gallery, Cologne: an installation of gouache paintings by Alexander Gorlizki
Closeup of one below
At Pavel Zoubok, New York: Al Hansen vintage collage of Hershey wrappers
The gallery specializes in collage and assemblage, some of it with a quirky bent. The booth is a magnet for fairgoers and it's rarely empty, as you see below
Zoubok posted one Facebook the funniest reports I'd read about the fairgoing experience from the dealer's point of view. I hope he won't mind that I reproduce it here:
Typical end-of-fair questions include: "Are these works for sale?" (A: Sir/Madam, everything is for sale.); "Are you the artist?" (A: Yes, and as you can see, I work in over twenty distinct styles.); "Would you take half?" (A: Would you?... I didn't think so.); "What do you people do all day?" (A: Mostly gossip, post on Facebook and shop on Ebay.); "Isn't it illegal to deface U.S. currency?" (A: Yes, so please don't report Mark Wagner to the authorities.); "Is your shirt part of the exhibit?" (A: I usually pretend I didn't hear that.); "What kind of name is Pavel Zoubok?" (A: Foreign. I'll give you a hint...)
You may have noticed that I haven't posted any work by women artists yet. That's about to change, as there are a number of fabulous women in the mix here. We start with Margie Livingston, whose work I have seen in Miami over the years and admired. Here she showed work with layers of acrylic paint--layers, no substrate--which she cut into strips, rolled into logs, or folded like fabric.
View of the fair with the Luis De Jesus Gallery, Los Angeles, right, which showed work by Margie Livingston and Heather Gwen Martin. The table in the foreground . . .
. . .holds a deconstructed painting by Livingston
Detail of Livingston's deconstructed painting showing the layers of paint film, which she polymer-glued into a thick sheet and then cut into strips. I love the calligraphic fluidity of this paint object, despite what I see to be its substantial weight
More Livingston, above and below
Above: Folded painting, foreground, with a paint two-by-four on the back wall
Below: End view of the two by four with the same circular "grain" as lumber
"The assignment I gave myself was to make objects out of paint," says Livingston in a video in which she talks about her work.
Above and below
Complementing Livingston's objects were fluid abstractions by Heather Gwen Martin
Looking into the booth of Galerie Stefan Roepke, Cologne
Neo-Op paintings by Julie Oppermann
At Schroeder Romero and Shredder, New York: Karin Waskiewicz material abstractions
Closer view of the large work, in acrylic on canvas
At Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York: David Poppie split-pencil constructions, with detail below
At Mixed Greens, New York: Suzanne Song paintings--they're flat--of acrylic on wood
At Gallery Joe, Philadelphia: Allyson Strafella carbon paper drawings
Closer view below: the carbon paper is typed on to create the textured surface
At Packer Schopf Gallery, Chicago: While the booth was in darkness, natural daylight on the outer wall illuminated this painting by Besty Stirratt
At Morgan Lehman, New York: Sharon Louden painting
At Patrick Heide Contemporary Art, London: Sharon Louden chairs with rubber tubing
Next up, probably on Dec 26: NADA
Big thanks to everyone who sent me to Miami. I am most appreciative of your help. To all my other friends reading this: If you are enjoying my coverage of the Miami art fairs, or the blog at any other time of year, please consider making a one-time annual donation of $20 (though any amount is welcome) to help support my effort. See the Donate button on the sidebar. Thank you.
The second installation of "Swept Away" will take place at the Hunterdon Art Museum in Clinton, New Jersey, May 18-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.
2013 Miami Art Fairs
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.