Melissa Stern – Walking the Line

Melissa Stern‘s artworks depict abstracted narratives with complex emotional layers,  projecting altogether an urgent psychological presence. The figures  in her drawings and sculptures inhabit an absurd universe which is  darkly funny  in a deeply felt way. Her imagery is precise, poetic,  and overall underscores  a close affinity with language – bringing to mind an artist who is both an acute observer and a witty commentator.  That said, it is Stern’s sensibility of raw and expressive forms that makes her not only an observant narrator but also  an empathetic participant in her own human comedy. The artist  shares with Art Spiel her modes of thinking, process of making, and some plans, including her solo show opening on Oct 11 at Garvey Simon Gallery.

Melissa Stern, Red Boots 30 x 8 x 10 inches, Clay, graphite, object, linoleum, 2016

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Susan Carr – Getting Used to Being Uncomfortable

Susan Carr creates playful and bold paintings, sculptures, and everything in between – all characterized by her thick, chunky, and layered painting application. Carr’s work comes from a deep and highly intuitive place, always guided by her vibrant curiosity. The artist shares with Art Spiel what brought her to art,  some of her thought process,  and  exploratory approach to material and form.

Susan Carr, Piece of Pi, 2018, hand cut wood with silk over the wood and yarn painted in oil with pieces of wood painted in oil 7×10 inch, photo courtesy of the artist

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Get Loose at Rick Wester Fine Art

Get Loose, installation view, photo courtesy Rick Wester Fine Art

Get Loose, the three person show Curated by Tracy McKenna at Rick Wester Fine Art, features work by Cat Balco, Ben Godward, and Jason Rohlf, who all show a knack for unexpected twists of material resulting in exuberant abstracted forms and unorthodox color across the board. The  abstract paintings and sculptures in the show prompt loose  interpretations of Geometric Abstraction, where the hand is rigorously present. Continue reading “Get Loose at Rick Wester Fine Art”

Katerina Lanfranco- Resisting Binary Oppositions

Katerina Lanfranco, photo by Edward Hutchinson

Katerina Lanfranco explores through painterly means the intellectual and physical freedom of making art at different scales and in various mediums. In her multi-faceted installations, paintings and sculptures she re-imagines scientific possibilities of human interference, interaction, and creativity in nature. Lanfranco, who is also a curator, educator, and writer, shares some thoughts on her journey, ideas, and curatorial practice with Art Spiel. Continue reading “Katerina Lanfranco- Resisting Binary Oppositions”

Elisa Soliven – Genesis of making in Clay

Elisa Soliven, Studio Portrait, Courtesy Maxim Ryazansky

Elisa Soliven is a sculptor, curator, and co-founder of the artist collective Underdonk.  In her recent body of work, exhibited at the last SPRING/BREAK art show, Soliven experienced a turning point in her art.  In our interview for ArtSpiel she elaborated on her process and shared some of the thought process behind her work. Continue reading “Elisa Soliven – Genesis of making in Clay”

Brent Green – Chickens Can’t Be Trained

Brent Green, A Brief Spark Bookended by Darkness installation, Andrew Edlin Gallery 2018, photo by Olya Vysotskaya

Artist/performer/filmmaker Brent Green is known for the raw beauty and poetic power in his animations, performances, and art installations. For instance, as an artist in residence at the Park Avenue Armory from the fall of 2015 to early 2016, Green performed at the venue’s “Under Construction Series” animated works-in-progress with a live band.  Later on that year, Green provided video projections and music for the first portion of “Empathy School/Love Story,” Aaron Landsman’s theater diptych of monologues at the Abrons Art Center, where the audience were seated on stage. We started our conversation when we first met at his superb recent installation exhibit at Andrew Edlin Gallery. Continue reading “Brent Green – Chickens Can’t Be Trained”

Christina Massey – In Between Zones

Christina-Massey, artist-studio, mixed-media artwork, photo courtesy of the artist

Christina Massey is a multi faceted artist whose appetite for bold experimentation with multiple materials and techniques feeds her rigorous search for complex form and subtle commentary on social and cultural issues. This process oriented search results in prints, sculptural installations, and wall reliefs –  layered imagery in her two dimensional work and highly textured surfaces in her dimensional work. Massey represents our current state of being “in between,” not only in the hybridity of her art forms, but also in the very definition of what it means to be an artist at this moment. Continue reading “Christina Massey – In Between Zones”

Trish Tillman – Souvenirs of a Moment

Trish Tillman, Afterschool Locker, 2017, Hand-printed vinyl, wood, metal, horsehair, resin, 66” x 37” x 6”, photo by Ethan Browning

Trish Tillman flirts with materials. She fuses in her sculptures  elements of fashion and interior décor like leather, vinyl, studs, ropes, and chains,  to create  art objects which are often both humorous and enigmatic. While her sculptures bring to mind  old relics, early symbols,  or mysterious calligraphic forms, they also embody the allure of faux luxury.  Continue reading “Trish Tillman – Souvenirs of a Moment”

 Helen O’ Leary: No Place for Certainty

Helen O’Leary, installation view of Home is a foreign country, 2018, photo courtesy of Lesley Heller by Eva O’Leary

Helen O’Leary‘s sculptural paintings are delicate and rough, subtle and raw, literal and metaphoric – they embrace and prick the viewer at the same time. Her current exhibition Home is a foreign country at Leslie Heller indicates not only clear incisiveness and impressive mastery of form, but also a deep generosity- sharing with the viewer her rigorous process of  grappling with material: visible jointing, disjointing, bending, folding,  knitting. She says that somewhere through the struggle some magic happens. And magic does happen in her artwork. Continue reading ” Helen O’ Leary: No Place for Certainty”

Gregory Coates, Claiming Feathers

Gregory Coates, Afro Series 1 and 2 with artist, feathers acrylic on luan, 4 feet diameter, 2018, photo courtesy of the artist

Gregory Coates’ bold and colorful installations raise questions rather than offer explanations. Through his abstracted forms and unabashed use of alluring colors he creates “social abstractions” which can be read as affirmations of life – beautiful and poignant at the same time. Continue reading “Gregory Coates, Claiming Feathers”