Gallery hosts AEQAI holiday gathering

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The Cincinnati-based e-journal for critical thinking, review and reflective prose on contemporary art, AEQAI, gathered for an evening full of discussion. Attending were AEQAI writers and board members including AEQAI editor Dan Brown, City of Covington Art Director Cate Yellig, author Karen Chambers, Northern Kentucky University English Graduate Program Professor Dr. Robert Wallce, artist Kevin Muente, artist and board member Jens Rozenkrantz, among others. AEQAI offers articles to invigorate the imagination and thought of its reader while stimulating artists and curators to produce better artworks and exhibitions.

The word ‘AEQAI’ was selected as a mispelling from a reprint of Livy’s text for the ‘Aequi.’ The Aequi were the peoples that Lucuis Quintus Cincinnatus of ancient Rome conquered upon his famous brief tenure as a ‘temporary’ dictator. He crushed their rebellion and then reintegrated them into the burgeoning empire. It is a playful analogy to the artist community since it implies the inevitable incorporation of the avant garde into mainstream culture. AEQAI states, “We creatives are the Aequi.”

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Striking new paintings available by Kevin Veara

Veara Miasma #37

Kevin Veara is fascinated with the density of life in the natural world. There is an elemental aspect to nature that recalls the primordial soup from which all life springs. Nature teams with abundance and beauty, but there is fierceness as well: eat or be eaten. Veara captures these intertwining images in his new paintings Miasma #37 (above) and Miasma #38 (below), acrylic on wood panel.

His paintings focus on birds and plants of the Sangamon River Valley, near Springfield, Illionois, that are found in the steep, forested banks and flood plains of the Sangamon River. His array of avian life, native and migratory, are often pictured as encircled by menacingly sharp-leaved plants that remind us of human complicity in climate change, habit fragmentation, invasive species and genetic modification. “I create omnivorous plants to represent the environment,” Veara said.

Veara Miasma #38

Veara’s studio is surrounded by forest that is home to myriad species of birds, many of which he can see at feeders outside his studio windows. “Out here in the country my observations of birds have solidified my ideas about natural time – a calendar based on the arrival and departure of birds, such as the Juncos that arrive in the fall from the arctic for the ‘warm winter’ and return to the arctic in the spring,” Veara said. This part of the Sangamon Valley is as far south as they come. Birds use the area to breed. And Veara has always had a great liking for birds, as he sees them as a barometer of the quality of the enviroment.

Their populations rise and fall in response to the quality of the environment. Being in the forst makes Veara more aware of his surroundings. “The house puts me in the middle of it, this process,” Veara said. He has drawn several hours each day for the past 18 years. His paintings begin with drawings on tracing paper which are transferred to a gesso prepared, wooden panel. The boards he paints on are thick and project the final, painted image out from the wall, giving each a distinct solidness and particular space.

To view other paintings by Kevin Veara, visit his artist page on the gallery website.

“Continuum” celebrates fifteen years of sculpture in cast glass and forged metal by Brian Russell

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On view in the Mallory and Wurtzburger galleries at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens in Memphis, Brian Russell’s new exhibition Continuum features several new outdoor sculptures throughout the gardens, and more intimately-scaled objects indoors. The indoor pieces feature streamlined cast glass forms resting in bronze bases similar to Punctuate 2 and Punctuate Dragon currently on view in our gallery. The outdoor sculpture dramatically displayed in the Dixon gardens, incorporate intricate cast glass elements and elongated curvilinear lines of metalwork. Russell has recently turned the focus of his metal work to aluminum. The Dixon describes the attraction of Russell’s sculpture as “the modern fluidity contrasts with the ancient techniques used to produce them, creating an active tension between glass and metal elements.” The exhibition will continue through January 12.

For more information, visit the Dixon Galleries and Garden’s current exhibitons website.

Kim Krause’s first solo exhibition at Marta Hewett Gallery opens Friday, Nov. 1

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Join us to celebrate our opening of ‘Eleusinian Mysteries,’ a selection of paintings by Kim Krause from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1 at the gallery with an artist talk beginning at 6:30 p.m. Krause describes his works in his Artist Statement.

I consider being an artist a way of living, and a daily invention. It is my attempt to engage the world fully, on my own terms, through paint. It is a continuing exploration by, and of, the imagination.

It is essential that I don’t know what is going to happen in a painting. It has to come as a result of “moving toward something”, a constant life-affirming process of creating with mind and hand.

The series of paintings based on the Eleusinian Mysteries, an initiation rite of the Cult of Demeter established over 3000 years ago, has provided a fertile source to explore the process of revelation and change. The Eleusinian Mysteries was an actual week-long rite of initiation and centers on the abduction of Persephone with the initiates, in a state of frenzy, being marched to the town of Eleusis where a great and formidable secret was revealed to them. The message, or perhaps the viewing of some object, was so astonishing that the initiates claim that it fundamentally changed the way they saw the universe. The vow of secrecy was complete in every aspect and to this day scholars have yet to determine what lies at the heart of the Eleusinian Mysteries.

This series explores various stages of the Mysteries attempting to make visual the emotional circumstances such a revelation might produce.

 Krause is a Cincinnati native whose paintings have been included in over 120 exhibitions both nationally and internationally. The artist’s work has been purchased for numerous public, private and corporate collections including Atlantic Richfield, Cincinnati Art Museum, The Evansville Museum of Art, among others.

Krause attended the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Art, Architecture and Planning; Birkbeck College, University of London, England; earning his BFA from the Art Academy of Cincinnati and his MFA from The Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College, New York. He is professor of Art at the Art Academy where he also co-chairs the Studio Program.

Gary Gaffney to moderate discussion on Contemporary Art

CAM flyerProfessor Emeritus of the Art Academy of Cincinnati Gary Gaffney has selected a panel of local art professionals to discuss the question, “Why Does Contemporary Art Matter?” in an After Dark presentation by the Cincinnati Art Museum from 7 to 8 p.m. Friday, October 25 at the Mary R. Schiff Library.

Informal conversations will follow the discussion with  notable participants; Jason Frantz, Director of Manifest Gallery; Saad Ghosn, Scientist, Artist, and founder of SOS Art; Kevin T. Kelly, an artist with regional and international recognition; and Althea Thompson, Chair of the Visual Arts Department of the School for the Creative and Performing Arts.

Gaffney said it is time for the artist’s voice to be heard about larger issues relating to contemporary art. “Art education is eroding in the schools, and if you look at the coverage of the arts, much of the quality and criticism is not coming close to the art itself. If you go to major galleries after opening nights, they are as empty as tombs,” he said. These varied artists and educators who also create their own work were chosen by Gaffney because “they make an effort to get the public involved in art and take the time to educate.” The forum will take place at the Cincinnati Art Museum in the Mary R. Schiff Library, which is up the right stairwell through the Renaissance and Spanish galleries.

‘Angels’ curated by Gary Gaffney ends Saturday at the Carnegie

Angels is a group exhibition exploring the concept of angels in popular culture. Curator Gary Gaffney (mixed media angel seen below) describes angels as messagers of hope and comfort, but also more broadly, angels announce, condemn, guide and guard, and define God while acting to mediate the nature of humans trapped in time and mortality.

Angels exhibit GaffneyGaffney selected regional artists working in various media: bronze, steel, porcelain, cardboard, paper, ceramic, fiberglass, wood, photography, glass, amongst others. The exhibition explores the cultural and personal understanding of angels through the eyes of these artists.

Tony Becker uses images of ladders drawn on translucent fabric veils for the piece, Our Lady of Angels, which bears testament to 92 elementary school children who died in a fire in Chicago, 1958. Firemen leaned their ladders under blackened, two story windows only to discover the children had succumed to the smoke, heat and flames. Farron Allen incorporates bronze and steel in her piece Earthbound Angels. In the passed decades, Allen has lost friends and lovers to AIDS, watching the situation as it goes from being unexplored, to an epidemic in the public arena where presidentsnow create organizations for financial assistance. She questions how fast life comes at you and how fast life comes to an end.

Angels exhibit Schmit

Cultural references include Lord Byron’s The Destruction of Sennacherib  in a mixed media piece by Celene Hawkins, the film Wings of Desire in a mixed media piece by Christian Schmit (a detail is seen above), and Milton’s Paradise Lost in a photograph by Anthony Lusensman. The photograph Rydell shows a woman descending down a narrow staircase in a former bothel surrounded by artificial light suggesting the lost holy raiments of golden wings and halo. Viewers can see how Milton’s fallen angel has impacted Lusensman, just as the idea of angels has affected artists throughout the exhibit.

Angels, continuing through October 12, is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue available at the front desk. For more information, visit the Carnegie website.

Current exhibition welcomes four new artists

We are pleased to introduce Melissa Parrott-Quimby, Joanna Manousis, Andrew Hayes and Cedric Cox to our clients and visitors in our new exhibition ‘This is Contemporary Art’ featuring over 20 artists working in a wide variety of media. The exhibition will be open until October 26 and all works by new and existing artists can be seen on the exhibits page of the gallery’s website.

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Cedric Cox, Diamond Thrust, 36″h x 60″w, acrylic on paper

The paintings of local artist Cedric Cox fall between surrealism and representational abstraction. Themes in his work range from mythical literature to the relationships between the physical body, musical allegories, and natural and man-made landscapes. Cox graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Architecture Art and Planning. Find our more information about Cox on his website.

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Andrew Hayes, Widget, 8.5″h x 7″w x 9″d, bronze and paper

In Hayes work, he counteracts the harshness of the metal with the delicacy of the book page. Growing up in Tuscan, Arizona and studying sculpture at Northern Arizona University exposed Hayes to the desert landscape inspiring much of his early sculptural work and style in fabricated steel. He worked in welding and continued to explore a variety of materials, which eventually led to steel and book pages. Visit Andrew’s squarespace to view more of his works.

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British born artist and designer Joanna Manousis now lives and works in Columbus after receiving her Masters of Fine Arts in sculpture from Alfred University in New York. She re-appropriates objects that exist in the world as a device to lure and engage a universal audience. Glass is primarily her medium to induce reflection, both physically and metaphorically, in the viewer. Visit Joanna’s website to learn more about her works.

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Ceramics shaped as linear vessels by Melissa Parrott-Quimby come in a multitude of colors and sizes. She received her Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Delaware before moving to Indianapolis as an Adjunct Faculty member at the Herron School of Art and Design, also serving as a member of National Council for Education in the Ceramic Arts.