Filed under: In the Studio, Process Of A Painting | Tags: Ellen C. Caldwell, Erin Murray, In the Studio, Nancy Margolis Gallery, Process of a Painting
Erin Murray’s (NAP #69, #98) oil paintings have a way of making the everyday environment feel surreal, fluid, informal, and in flux. Regular land- and cityscapes are painted to feel slightly off, making the viewer feel faintly uneasy compositionally, yet vaguely at home geographically.
Familiar scenes – a pool, a backyard, a house, a farm – look commonplace, but feel so subtly upended that it leaves me, as a viewer, uncertain about the lonely and troubling feeling I have in contemplating and taking in her works. Regardless of my feelings while processing Murray’s works and subjects, the end result of her works is something for which most artists strive and most viewers yearn – her paintings are thought provoking, conceptual, and meditative, all in one. - Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: In the Studio, Process Of A Painting | Tags: Ellen C. Caldwell, In the Studio, Matthew Bourbon, Process of a Painting
Matthew Bourbon (NAP #90, #102) creates a wonderful balance in his paintings – he fills organic shapes and figures with loud, bold, geometric shapes. Rather than seeming meddlesome or intrusive, though, these shapes look and feel quite at home in the spaces they occupy.
Bourbon shared his step-by-step process for and thoughts behind his painting Ms. Motives in this Process of a Painting piece…There are quiet andwonderful moments throughout his process – one of my favorites being the point in the painting where he has painted Ms. Motives’ legs so naturalistically, before covering them in their metaphorical and painterly geometric “tights.” - Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: Interview | Tags: Artbound, Ellen C. Caldwell, Hillary Mushkin, Juan Devis
KCET’s multimedia project Artbound works at many different levels and with many different audiences to report on the cultural affairs of Southern California. First, it is a series of online articles written by artists, journalists, curators, and art-world experts from the Southern California region who focus on a variety of topics and disciplines.
Hillary Mushkin | Incendiary Traces 1, 2013, inspired by 1991 footage of Baghdad. Courtesy of Artbound.
Next, it is an interactive social media hub, wherein readers can interact with, share, and publicize their favorite articles. Based on its reach and shares, the most popular article is paired against an editor’s choice, so the two go out to readers for a vote. Of those two, the winning article is turned into a short documentary that is then published online and in the Artbound TV series. – Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: Review | Tags: Alejandro Cartagena, Car Poolers, Ellen C. Caldwell, Kopeikin Gallery
To start, I am a big fan of Alejandro Cartagena’s photographs. In his recent series Car Poolers, he documents and captures construction workers carpooling to and from work. Compositionally, they are compelling and even painterly. Often displayed in a grid at the Kopeikin Gallery, each photograph feels just as powerful when together as when they are apart.
Alejandro Cartagena | Car Poolers grid, 2011-2012. Courtesy of the Kopeikin Gallery.
Cartagena takes photographs in Monterrey, Mexico, documenting parts of everyday life there that he sees as depicting “a global issue from a local perspective.” In a town that has a relatively new, booming construction market, Cartagena decided to document a side of the day laborers’ lives that might not often be seen: the commute to and from work at various construction sites.
Henry Taylor, Installation view, 2013. Courtesy of Blum & Poe.
Although the show featured three large galleries of work, for me, the central heart of the show laid in the first gallery amidst the tilled rows of soil. As viewers walked into the gallery through the recreated school principal door, they were confronted with the familiar smell of dirt and multiple juxtapositions and incongruencies – all of which were moving, bold, and beautiful. - Ellen Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: Museum Admission | Tags: El Anatsui, Ellen C. Caldwell, The Brooklyn Museum
The Brooklyn Museum’s retrospective of El Anatsui’s works, entitled “Gravity and Grace: Monumental Works by El Anatsui,” says and does a lot all at once: it’s high art (gaining international acclaim at the Venice Biennale in 2007 and quite literally, towering above viewers); it’s low art (made of repurposed trash and sometimes resting at and under visitors’ feet at the museum); and all said and done, it’s freaking beautiful.
El Anastsui | Gli (Wall), 2010. Aluminum and copper wire, installation at the Brooklyn Museum, dimensions variable. Image courtesy of Ellen C. Caldwell.
This show, which has been travelling around the U.S. since the summer of 2012, is truly monumental and is showing simultaneously with another large-scale retrospective of his work, appearing in 11 major cities between 2011 and 2014; in numbers, it is displaying more than 30 works, spanning Anatsui’s artistic career; and in recyclability, it is turning pounds and pounds of garbage and refuse into sheer beauty and wonder. – Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: Gallerist at Home, Q&A | Tags: Cole Sternberg, David B. Smith, David B. Smith Gallery, Denver, Ellen C. Caldwell, Gallerist at Home, Hong Seon Jang, Laura Ball
Denver’s burgeoning contemporary art scene is anchored by such galleries as David B. Smith Gallery. Representing artists like Laura Ball (NAP #61, #97), Hong Seon Jang, and Cole Sternberg, the gallery is at once contemporary and relevant—and growing with the times.
David Smith (center, in tie) at opening reception for Hong Seon Jang, Labyrinth, at David B. Smith Gallery, Denver, May 2012. Time-lapse photograph courtesy of Paul Winner.
In his home, as with most other “gallerists at home,” Smith’s passion and enthusiasm for the artists he represents professionally is clear. Pairing paintings with photography and sculpture, he has created a warm and inviting space that reflects his humor and personality as well. - Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
Filed under: Interview | Tags: Ellen C. Caldwell, Interview, Kim Cadmus Owens, Q&A
Kim Cadmus Owens (NAP #78 and #102) creates large oil paintings that are striking in color and subject. Glancing at a work such as “Smoke and Mirrors” or the “Alamo,” you feel as if you are moving with her paintings at the speed of light.
Kim Cadmus Owens | Smoke and Mirrors: coming and going, 2011, acrylic and oil on canvas, 48” x 156” UF (diptych)
Owens found inspiration for her work amidst technology blunders and anomalies, such as frozen, overtaxed computer screens and fragmented desktop patterns. Embedding these within her land- and cityscapes, Owens also places the viewer amidst bright and bold scenes. Many of these locales are reminiscent of old, empty, western wastelands – featuring what appear to be aged or abandoned buildings. However, because she amps up the color and imbues them with such a force of their own, and because she fragments her works with impending lines and fractures, they feel alive, burgeoning, and even hectic. The heightened feeling she creates is amplified by the visually pleasing nature of her oil paint eye candy. Her work makes me want to be on that road trip she is on, but in the meantime as I am speeding on the freeway on my own, her paintings inspire me to see things quite differently and much more brightly. – Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor
All images courtesy of the artist and Holly Johnson Gallery.
Filed under: Features | Tags: Brian Fee, Ellen C. Caldwell, Erin Langner, Matthew Smith, Nadiah Fellah
In case you haven’t noticed, we have the best art writers in the world. Seriously, it’s true. Our blog contributors are stationed all over the country, scoping out shows, visiting studios, and interviewing the best contemporary painters in the art world. Recently we asked our most prolific bloggers to answer a few questions about themselves and their thoughts on 2012. It’s your chance to get to know a handful of the talented individuals that bring you the New American Paintings/Blog! There are many more writers, and we hope to feature them soon.
Thanks to everyone that contributes to our blog, helping us bring our readers rich and exciting content on a daily basis!
When we asked Brian Fee which piece “moved him” in 2012, he responded: James Rosenquist | F-111 Reinstallation, 1964-65, Oil on canvas with aluminum, twenty-three sections, 10×86′
Filed under: Gallerist at Home | Tags: Ellen C. Caldwell, Gallerist at Home, Paul Kopeikin
The Kopeikin Gallery is nestled amidst Culver City’s galleries on La Cienega. Offering a fresh and reliable dose of art to Angelenos, the gallery is a favorite respite of mine, mostly because of its versatile yet dependable shows, such as “Looking at Mexico” and “Alejandro Cartegena” in 2012 (reviewed here) or another favorite artist “Amy Ross” (NAP #32, #50, #62, #74) in 2011.
Gallery façade, courtesy of Kopeikin Gallery.
At his home, gallery director and owner Paul Kopeikin has a similar approach and aesthetic when it comes to choosing the art he displays. But when it comes to the physical arrangement of the display, Kopeikin has more flexibility at home, often choosing a random pairing of photographs, or an entire salon-style wall in his kitchen. The look and feel is much like his gallery, refreshing and pleasurable to explore. - Ellen C. Caldwell, Los Angeles Contributor (more…)