Invitational Group Show
Exhibition DetailsFeaturing work by John Anderson, Liz Awalt, Gerry Bergstein, Maxine Yalovitz-Blankenship, Paul Bowen, Laura Chasman, Alain Gerard Clement, Frank Egloff, Phyllis Galembo, Hughes-Bosca, Catherine McCarthy, Janice Redman, Shelley Reed, Candace Walters.
Clark Gallery celebrates an exciting transition with Free Reign, an invitational group show hanging from April 1 through April 30, 2008. Dawn Southworth and Dana Salvo, two nationally exhibited artists, are the new owners and directors of Clark. Free Reign, featuring painting, photography, and sculpture, introduces Clark’s new energy and vision.
Clark Gallery has a strong history of exhibiting painting. Free Reign follows suit, featuring work by Liz Awalt, Gerry Bergstein, Laura Chasman, Frank Egloff, Catherine McCarthy, Shelley Reed, Candace Walters and Maxine Yalovitz-Blankenship
Liz Awalt’s visionary and magical paintings delve deeply into the expressive possibilities of paint. Her large-scale sensuously painted anthropomorphic imagery have implied narratives and become vehicles to express primal emotions of love, joy, and sorrow. Rather than explorations of specific sites, her meditations on both life and death are experienced by the paint’s sheer physicality and transformative potential.
Gerry Bergstein, Boston’s renowned Expressionist, paints the life experience, giving form to the manic and the melancholic, the awesome and the trivial, the high and the low. In his recent paintings, vast post-apocalyptic structures emerge from the earth, jutting into the cosmos. Teetering in space, his cracked and broken façade-like masses tower above the individual, soaring into a universe of the unknown.
Laura Chasman’s intimate portraits of adolescents executed in gouache on paper reveal the distinctive characteristics of teenagers at a transformative time. Laura’s deeply personal and poignant depictions of her young son Oliver and friends sensitively communicate the delicate nature of development between childhood and adulthood, embodying the nuances of the biological and emotional changes that they encounter.
Frank Egloff breaks down the presumed reality of photo-based imagery. His large scale painting, after Gary Winogrand, 1961, and Lusha Nelson, 1936, has been painstakingly and convincingly rendered as newly invented composite of the photographic pairing in acrylic on canvas. According to Egloff, “The paintings are conceived primarily as meditations on the nature and meaning of contemporary images.”
Catherine McCarthy creates richly layered paintings infused with the sensibility of centuries past. Profoundly personal yet rich with metaphor, her work incorporates references to art history, religion, science, memory, and ideals of femininity. Meaning lies in the transitions and connections between isolated passages of the landscape, figures, scrawling text and washes of paint.
Shelley Reed’s large canvasses, on the scale of history paintings, create complex narratives rich with beauty while drenched in mystery. Reed takes as her starting point 17th Century Dutch aviary paintings. With images of exotic and spectacular species of birds and fauna, set in languishing and lush landscapes, Reed creates allegorical conundrums. Her paintings, meticulously executed in grisaille appear to present a transcendentalist mood and posture toward an idealized nature in this contemporary time.
Candace Walters’ mixed media paintings are affecting testaments conjuring dreams and memory. Penetrating portraits of her daughter Cara become iconic objects of spiritual beauty while her recent landscapes are reminiscent of the Mexican Folk Art retablo tradition.
Maxine Yalovitz-Blankenship’s paintings are heavily encrusted with broad strokes of thick, vibrant paint. The bird is a recurring image in her work, becoming metaphoric symbols suggesting reflective and poignant narratives.
Free Reign introduces photography to Clark, featuring nationally recognized Alain Gerard Clement and Phyllis Galembo.
Alain Gerard Clement employs a 19th Century photographic printing-out process to create his silver chloride photogenic drawings. With his dramatically distilled photogenic drawings, the images float mysteriously in the subconscious of wondrously rich sepia toned backgrounds. In their classical balance and exquisite luminosity, Clement's images elicit an innocent wonder, which etches its way into our conscious attention. The simple object becomes a mysterious thing, seemingly existing beyond mortal time. Their purity and resonance chronicle Clement's unfolding mystical journey.
Phyllis Galembo has produced an impressive body of photographs depicting the physical character, costumes and rituals of African religious practices and their diasporic manifestations in the Caribbean and South America. Using a direct, unaffected portrait style, Galembo captures her subjects informally posed but often strikingly attired in traditional or ritualistic dress. Galembo’s subjects level a penetrating gaze at a photographic interpreter who has managed to collapse, for a moment, the cultural, racial and economic distance between herself and them. Galembo’s photograph, Three Painted Boys, made during Carnival—with one standing in the foreground, one leaning against a graffiti-covered wall and another squatting on the right—are splattered in thick, rich red and green pigment, their eyes locked on the camera in a tableau of ethnic color, social mystery and a powerful sense of personal identity.
Sculptors John Anderson, Paul Bowen, and Janice Redman have created unique works from wood, found objects, and metals. A sculptural approach to jewelry is illustrated in the featured work by Hughes-Bosca, a collaborative effort of Mary Hughes and Caro-Gray Bosca.
John Anderson makes illusory objects of carved wood, welded steel and found materials. His dreamlike constructions of a carved hand, head, foot and torso juxtaposed with welded steel, pipes, rope and wire transport the viewer into a subconscious world of fantastic imagery.
Paul Bowen makes earthy sculptures from found wood, sticks and scraps of metal which also incorporate tar and plaster. Circles, squares, cones, wedges, and a brawny L-shape that recalls the silhouette of a fishing boat inhabit his abstract sculptures. Several of his smaller sculptures consist of a plaster sphere from which wood structures, like simple houses, or sticks and organic debris, project out, as if emerging from a shell. His works on paper executed in vibrant red continue his exploration of the L-shape and are reminiscent of the fishing draggers from which he finds inspiration.
Janice Redman’s work is directly rooted in her everyday experience and personal history. She makes sculptures with ordinary utensils and other objects found in the domestic arena of her home that are surrounded by a sense of history and mystery. Be it thimbles, spoons, cups or saucers, Redman ritually and methodically wraps, stuffs or sews them in soft, dingy cloth or encloses them in hydrocal plaster.
Hughes-Bosca, is an artist team of two nationally recognized goldsmiths, Mary Hughes and Caro Gray Bosca. The pair design and hand make timeless yet contemporary jewels of 18k gold and platinum that are hand-set with selected diamonds, rubies, antiquities, emeralds, sapphires, citrine, jade, coral and/or natural Tahitian pearls.