New American Paintings/Blog

Long Plays: Okay Mountain at Mark Moore Gallery by New American Paintings

I’ll start with a joke: How many artists does it take to satirize contemporary culture, democratize the collaborative process, vandalize notions of the banal while able to emphasize the importance of drawing within the practice of making?…..9. I learned that one while talking to Okay Mountain co-founder, artist, curator and overall swell guy Nathan Green. Currently, Mark Moore Gallery in Los Angeles presents Long Plays (on view through March 16th), the first solo exhibition of works by the Austin-based artist collective. With their razor sharp dry wit, Okay Mountain offers less of an attitude and more of a gentle sucker punch; more like getting a beating with a bag of oranges as opposed to a bag of bricks. The former won’t break bones but you’ll still know whose boss. Green and I had a little chat about the show and the OKMT collective mentality. – Arthur Peña, Dallas Contributor

Installation shot of Long Plays

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Choose Your Own Imperfection: Joseph Phillips at Tiny Park by New American Paintings
February 6, 2013, 8:30 am
Filed under: Austin, Review | Tags: , , , ,

Tired of Big City confines, but reluctant to embrace the Baby Boomers’ love for suburban sprawl? Joseph Phillips (NAP #84 and 96) presents a solution in Infinite Perfection, his debut solo exhibition at Tiny Park in Austin. In just eight tidily composed works on paper and a modular wall piece, Phillips locks into that balance of manmade convenience and nature’s comfort, with results both blissfully utopian and chillingly severe. — Brian Fee, Austin contributor

Joseph Phillips | Variety Acre with Cabin and Tank, 2013, Gouache, graphite, and ink on paper, 15 x 19 inches. Courtesy the artist and Tiny Park, Austin.

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Heart to Art: Thao Votang and Brian Willey of Tiny Park (Part I) by New American Paintings
July 17, 2012, 8:00 am
Filed under: Art World, Austin, Interview | Tags: , , , ,

Living half a block from West Chelsea’s gallery scene equalled art overload for this former New York City resident. I figured I wouldn’t find the same convenience in Austin, TX…until I discovered the adorable apartment gallery Tiny Park, within walking distance of my flat. Tiny Park’s petite size belied its creative and compelling exhibitions, organized by owners Brian Willey and Thao Votang. Less than a year after opening their doors to the public, Tiny Park moved to a proper commercial space on Austin’s east side. I spoke with Willey and Votang about their plans for the new, not-so-Tiny Park. — Brian Fee, Austin contributor

Part II has been posted! Check it out here…

Thao Votang and Brian Willey. Courtesy Tiny Park, Austin.

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The Frozen Moment: Nick Brown at Tiny Park by New American Paintings
March 27, 2012, 8:15 am
Filed under: Review | Tags: , , ,

The human experience, how we navigate through this turbulent world, interacting with society and nature, and our destined demises—all this dwells within Nick Brown’s affective canvases. Not to say the lot are sombre: this array of paintings and pastel drawings at Austin’s Tiny Park conjure a spectrum of complex emotions befitting their varied imagery. If a picture is worth a thousand words, Brown’s works embody infinitely more. – Brian Fee, Austin Contributor

Nick Brown | Poppies, 2010, oil on canvas, 36″ x 60″ Courtesy the artist and Tiny Park, Austin.

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Heart to Art: Lora Reynolds of Lora Reynolds Gallery (PART TWO) by New American Paintings

Part two of my interview with Lora Reynolds on her namesake, cutting-edge, Austin, TX-based gallery. Find part one here. – Brian Fee, Austin Contributor

BF: You show a dynamic lineup of international artists working in various disciplines/mediums. How has the public responded to them?

LR: The gallery receives lots of support and kudos from our community, for which we are most grateful! And it is especially rewarding to see the gallery reach extend beyond Texas. For example when (gallery artist) Noriko Ambe’s exhibition was recognized as one of the Best Shows in a Commercial Gallery, Nationally, at this years AICA Awards Ceremony and when Tom Molloy was selected to represent Ireland in this year’s Sharjah Biennial in the United Arab Emirates.

Noriko Ambe | Spiritual America: Richard Prince, 2009, Cut book, 12 1/3 x 17 3/4 x 1 7/8 inches. Courtesy the artist and Lora Reynolds Gallery.

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Heart to Art: Jill Schroeder of grayDUCK Gallery by New American Paintings

When I relocated to Austin from New York City this summer, I became inextricably attracted to grayDUCK Gallery and its consummate Austin vibe. Its location south of Town Lake puts the gallery in walking distance from “Keep Austin Weird” South Congress, and it shares a Zip Code with Torchy’s Tacos and indie record store End of an Ear — i.e. Austin all the way. Then there is grayDUCK’s rigorous monthly exhibition schedule and its strong roster of local artists. I met with Jill Schroeder, owner and director of grayDUCK, to discuss the gallery’s unique presence and her goals for the future. — Brian Fee, Austin Contributor

Jill Schroeder, photographed by Jefferson Harris

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Jim Torok: Walton at Lora Reynolds Gallery by New American Paintings
September 19, 2011, 9:24 am
Filed under: Austin, Review | Tags: , , , , ,

I keep thinking of Caroline. I have never met this Caroline in person, nor have I visited Walton, the town nestled in the Western Catskill Mountains in upstate New York where she resides. And yet, when regarding her portrait — the middle image of seven same-sized, intimately scaled paintings in Jim Torok’s Walton exhibition at Austin’s Lora Reynolds Gallery — I feel as though I “could” know her. Like I’ve seen that faintly sun-streaked brown hair, those indescribably blue-grey eyes somewhere before.  Or I could know one of her neighbors, Yanna with her fuzzily textured tartan scarf and ice-water eyes, Iskander the kid, his T-shirt a mottled non-pattern like a painted Easter egg, whatever’s hanging from the string around his neck hidden beyond the boundaries of the painting. – Brian Fee, Austin Contributor

Caroline, 2011, oil on birch, 5″ x 3.875″ x 1″   Courtesy the artist and Lora Reynolds Gallery
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