Archive for July, 2010

Kansas City’s Daniel Reneau is pulling some new tricks out of his bag in a new painting at a largely lackluster July show at the Dolphin Gallery.  Above is his new-ish painting, Bound Up in the Body (2009, acrylic on panel, 47″ x 39″).

-Also, the Wonderfair Gallery in Lawrence, KS had a fun exhibit up.  Artists were provided a blank piece of paper and a matrix for assigning monetary value to contemporary art, which was determined by folks at the gallery after the piece was finished.  Seems like a fun, tongue-in-cheek, slightly punk way to address something that bugs us all.  Not quite beating ’em, not quite joining ’em.  Here’s the review from Review.

-Also at Review, a Q&A with painter Ryan Mosley about his exhibit at Grand Arts in KC.  The show itself was a bit of a flop.  All these huge, Dyonisian painterly canvases that he previewed in progress a month before the show opened turned into stagnant, inert figure/ground-only pictures of inexplicably cliched subjects (actually the subject matter bothers me less than the inert compositions).  But, as flops go, it’s the kind of flop I can get behind.  It’s clearly a case of someone not shying away from a challenge, which I wish I saw more of, in my own studio and in the galleries around, too.

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Rackstraw Downes

A review in the NYT...

A 2004 conversation with David Cohen at Artcritical (love the first line of Cohen’s intro “With Rackstraw Downes, the clichés happen to be true: Time does stand still. His paintings capture a moment. You feel you’re literally there.”)…

In the Brooklyn Rail…

…because of this summer’s concurrent exhibits at Betty Cunningham Gallery, the Aldrich Museum and the Parrish Museum.

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A medium-sized Baroque painting, “The Allegory of Vanity” by Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione (aka Il Grechetto) from the collection of the Nelson-Atkins Museum in KC.  The strangely sinister and sadly overlooked painting is an uncommon mash-up of idyll, allegory and still-life.  Castiglione, who may have studied with van Dyck, Rubens and Strozzi, is capable of some beautiful tonalities and the inventive ways he finds for depicting form share an affinity with more recent artists like Charles Hawthorne or Edwin Dickinson.  On top of that–for all huge array of figures, objects, spaces depicted–every inch of this canvas is painted with wit and with care.  There’s none of that “Man I don’t wanna paint this lute now…shouldn’t I see what’s up on facebook?”  Below are a few details. (more…)

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Shane Walsh

Certainly the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has been on virtually everyone’s mind, at least to some degree. Disasters of this scale, man made or naturally occurring, are often cause for reflecting on who we are, what we do, and whether we’re doing what we should be doing.

Artists put significant effort into crafting methods of art-making that are individual and enduring. What happens to that kind of process when something big happens? Something topical but undeniably significant? Do we carry on as always? Should there be a specific response to the event in question? Does the event reframe the work temporarily or permanently? Shane Walsh has kindly agreed to a one-question interview on this topic. He received his MFA from the University of Washington in 2006, and he currently teaches at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design and at the University of Milwaukee.


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