« December 2006 | Main | March 2007 »

January 22, 2007

Lillian Ball: GO ECO @ The Queens Museum

 

Queens Museum of Art
New York City Building
Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Queens, NY 11368-3398
718.592.9700
www.queensmuseum.org

Lillian Ball: GO ECO

February 4 - May 27, 2007

GO ECO is an interactive installation that illuminates the different perspectives of several participants involved in a wetland preservation project. The concept is metaphorically based on the ancient Asian game of Go, (originally, one of the Four Arts of China along with music, painting, and poetry) which uses strategies to capture territory through balancing tactics. GO ECO also functions as an informational “serious game” installation of video vignettes. Digitally manipulated images with sound are projected in quadrants on the screen to lead players through to the next move. The final outcome of the game is determined by the teamwork of players making their way toward a solution that enables all sides to win or to lose together. GO ECO allows players of many ages to be empowered and to learn about the issues through an art experience that maps paths of action.

 

January 14, 2007

Strange Weather @ The National Academy of Sciences

Flood5

Flood 5, 2006, oil on canvas, 60 x 78 inches

Strange Weather
New Paintings
By Joy Garnett

in two parts:

Part I:
January 15 - April 30, 2007
by appointment,
call (202) 334-2436
 

National Academies' Keck Center
550 Fifth Street NW, First Floor Gallery
Washington, DC


Artist's Talk : Thursday Feb 8, 2007, 6 - 8pm


PRESS RELEASE  [PDF]  

An artist's multiple with essays by Lucy R. Lippard and  Andrew C. Revkin is available upon request. 

Part II:
Opens to the Public
May 5 - July 30, 2007

OPENING RECEPTION
Sunday, May 27, 2007, 1 - 3 pm

National Academy of Sciences
2100 C Street NW, Upstairs Gallery
Washington, DC
 
Open  weekdays,  9am - 5pm

------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
NAS Announces 'Strange Weather: New Paintings by Joy Garnett'

Washington - "Strange Weather," an exhibition of paintings by Joy Garnett depicting environmental and social catastrophes, will be on view by appointment from Jan.15 through April 30 at the National Academies' Keck Center, 500 Fifth St., N.W., Washington, D.C. It will then be placed on public view from May 5 through July 30 at the National Academy of Sciences' headquarters, located at 2100 C St., N.W., Washington, D.C.

Joy Garnett gathers photographs of man-made and natural disasters from the Internet and renders the images as richly textured oil paintings. In the process, she locates tensions between the visceral power of paint and the fleeting nature of images in the mass media, addressing the evolving role of art in an information-saturated society.

Curated for the National Academy of Sciences, the exhibition focuses on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In Strange Weather, Garnett takes widely distributed news images of a devastated New Orleans and recasts them as paintings in which geological, political, and sociological weather are inextricably intertwined.

Based in New York City, Joy Garnett studied painting at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris and received her MFA from the City College of New York. Her paintings were recently exhibited in "Image War," organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art , New York City, and "Run for Your Lives!" at DiverseWorks, Houston. In 2004, she received a grant from the Anonymous Was a Woman Foundation. In 2000, she received a commission from the Wellcome Trust to participate along with her father, biochemist Merrill Garnett, in "N01se," a multi-site exhibition about information and transformation at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge, and the Wellcome Trust's Two10 Gallery, London. The exhibition was organized by artist Adam Lowe and historian of science Simon Schaffer.

For more than 20 years, the Office of Exhibitions and Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences has sponsored exhibitions, concerts, and other events that explore relationships among the arts and sciences.

Add to del.icio.us 

January 10, 2007

Portia Munson: "Green"



via Artnet Magazine, 1/9/07:
PETAL PERFECTION
by Ilka Scobie
Portia Munson, "Green," Jan. 5-Feb. 3, 2007, at P.P.O.W., 555 West 25th Street, New York, N.Y. 10001

Portia Munson’s photographic flower mandalas, though contemporary, fulfill a mystical ideal -- their concentric structure reflects the shape of the outside universe while striving for a celebration of perfection within. Each petal in Munson’s mandalas has been gathered from her own upstate garden or surrounding field or forest. "In another life, I’d like to be a scientist," Munson said, a few hours before the opening of her show at P.P.O.W. The careful dissection and arrangement of the blossoms reflects a craftsperson’s care as much as the luminous hues represent a master colorist.

Munson, a painter, began working directly with flowers in 2002. "I’ve always been a painter, but I also give myself freedom to work in other ways. I can’t express every idea in a painting." Each limited-edition photo, done in pigmented ink on rag watercolor paper (the flowers are arranged directly on a digital scanner, and not subjected to digital enhancement), is the result of one day’s peak harvest, and reflects "what’s in bloom from that day."

 

Plucked only shortly before being photographed, the four-leaf clovers or marigolds are damp with dew -- Munson’s delicately sensual blooms bare little resemblance to the hothouse bouquets sold on city corners. The flora is so intense in hue and freshness that it suggests a psychedelic influence. Munson laughingly explained, "What immediately comes to mind is that I’m very allergic in the spring. So I am  physically intoxicated in terms of psychedelic visuals. I do love color, but I’m trying to make more than pretty colors."

Munson studied with Vito Acconi, Leon Golub, Barbara Kruger, Joan Semel, Martha Rosler and Harriet Shorr. She acknowledges that "my esthetic doesn’t follow theirs, but my approach has certainly been influenced." She also cites Kiki Smith and Fred Tomaselli as artists she finds kinship with.

In Bulbs, the symmetrical arrangement of flowers is marked by grape hyacinths, whose graceful tendrils end in the coda of the hairy hued bulb. "I wanted to show the whole thing," Munson explains. Interspersed with the purple flowers are dissected daffodils, with one perfect daffodil specimen in the center. Green Aftermath is a paean to spring. Adolescent milkweed bulbs, immature berries and weeds form a verdant rainbow, displayed as an artful cornucopia.

Two companion pieces, Queen Annes Lace and Daffodil, are color-coordinated constellations transmuted to geometric perfection, with bisected blooms nestled in lacy herb nests or petals. The one work that is not drawn from Munson’s garden is Rose Bed, which uses flowers from a funeral arrangement.

"Some of my earlier pieces were feminist. Now the pressing issue seems to be the environment," Munson explained, as we viewed the large-scale floor installation Lawn that fills the middle of the gallery. An astonishing agglomeration of plastic, everything is green, though in varying tones. The juxtaposition of plastic toys (some filched from her young children), soda bottles, an avocado-hued sink, tangled Christmas lights, discarded shoes, sad gloves, Halloween wigs, laundry detergent jugs and lawn furniture makes every corner an emerald revelation of our disposable society. The verdantly polyethylene Lawn is the antithesis of a natural meadow.

The show concludes with 13 jewel-like paintings in the rear gallery, each a still-life of a singular idiosyncratic object. In Munson’s hands, a thrift store Vase or an upturned Fur Hat has a quirky poignancy. Everyday stuff takes on the status of a cultural relic, like the tender pink Doll Slip, a sweetly delicate painting of a bit of doll garb, or the Mermaid Dish with Potatoes, a swirling 1950s ceramic surrounded by a spud corolla.

Inherently optimistic, Munson’s vision presents a luminous antidote to midwinter despair. Like traditional mandalas that center and inspire the viewer, "Green" represents a postmodernist oneness with nature that is both mediated and spiritually pure.

ILKA SCOBIE is a poet.