What it Means to Be Human: HEES Displays Paintings and NFTs at Bechtler Museum and Aktion Art

HEES. “SEE ME FLY.” 2021-22. Acrylic, mixed media, and paintstick on raw canvas with 55 in LED screen insert- 4 NFTs play simultaneously, 84×96 in. Courtesy of Aktion Art.

A former-beauty-photographer-turned-artist, HEES’s creative journey has been one of consistent, self-taught innovation. The creator pivoted to painting 36 months ago, when he realized it was time for him to take on a new form of expression.

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Light and Matter: 2022 South Korea Sculpture Biennale

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Michael Whittle Butterfly on the Sun, Seongsan Art Hall, Changwon Ink on UV-resistant plastic, 61’ x 48’

The Changwon Biennale is the largest recurring sculpture show in South Korea. During the fall of 2022 it showcased 69 artists under the title, Channel: Particle Wave Duality. Curated by Director Cho Kwan Yong, Chief Curator Lee Tahe Hoon and Curator Hyojin Nam, the show considered the broad sense of how light and matter interact at the intersection of art and science. Alongside three-dimensional works, it included sound art, video screenings and installations. The small group of international artists who were invited this fall to South Korea to create their work onsite in the biennale exhibition halls worked for three weeks with support from the Korean government and the care of the local team.

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Magic Mirror: Susan Carr at LABspace

Installation view of Susan Carr’s Girls paintings on top, and self-portraits below, in Magic Mirror

Tired of phrases such as best kept secret, finally receiving her due, and delayed recognition it is time to recognize artists, particularly women artists who are in their prime, evolving both in facility and content. Susan Carr is a quintessential example, an accomplished artist who, over decades, has fearlessly mined the history of her own existence. Her latest exhibit, Magic Mirror at LABspace in Hillsdale New York is a tribute to her dedication, talent and courage.

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The Interaction of Light and Shadow: Susan English at Kathryn Markel

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Susan English, Still Light, 2022, tinted polymer on Dibond panel, 34 x 35 in. Courtesy of Kathryn Markel Fine Arts

To confront a person with their own shadow is to show them their own light.

– Carl Jung

In her current exhibition at Kathryn Markel Fine Arts, Light to Light, Susan English explores the vagaries of light as it penetrates layers of polymer and pigment. Subtle gradations in color are infused with radiant light, recalling the sfumato in Van Eyck’s translucent skies or Cimabue’s blushing Virgins. The seamless transitions are achieved through the artist’s unorthodox technique of pouring thin layers of tinted polymer onto panels, then tilting the panels while the pigments settle and dry. The multiple layers interact with light to create varying effects – sometimes luminous, sometimes opaque – which are punctuated by cracks and blemishes in the medium as it dries. These accidents are essential to the piece, as they provide a counterbalance to the exquisite surfaces and tight control of their execution. Indeed, English manipulates the panel in such a way that crackling is anticipated, and she views the result as a simulation of the fissures and fractures found in nature.

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Birds, Maps, Migrations

A Conversation Between Christine Sullivan and Marianne Gagnier

Christine Sullivan, The Place Between, 44 x 32” oil/linen

This conversational exchange between artists Christine Sullivan and Marianne Gagnier was catalyzed by artist and writer Paul D’Agostino. He encouraged them to engage in dialogue with one another upon noting that they had both produced new bodies of work, right around the same time, featuring bird imagery. Taking this as impetus for a fertile discussion, Marianne and Christine decided to interview one another regarding themes of journeys and migration, and they discovered a number of surprising points of connection in their lives.  

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Woolpunk®: Sunflowers & Graffiti’d Sky in the Garden State at Montclair Art Museum

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Detail, Sunflowers & Graffitit’d Sky in the Garden State, 2022, 24 x 36. Digital Image with embroidery and textiles. Photo Credit: Megan Maloy

Sunflowers & Grafitti’d Sky in the Garden State is a large-scale wall-based work by artist Woolpunk® in the Laurie Stairwell exhibition space at the Montclair Art Museum. It consists of a photo highlighting inspirational communal land use and dietary wellness, juxtaposed by a spray-painted sky-blue mural that is visible from behind the sunflowers. The use of the graffitied wall in the photo reminds us of the air-polluted sunsets, which are so beautiful that they make us almost forget what causes them.The sunflowers are treated as mutating militants filled with patterns and iconic images multiplying throughout the community garden,” the artist says.

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Linda Kuo & Dancers Unlimited

Grantee of Brooklyn Arts Fund

Project Profile: Edible Tales

Image Dancers Unlimited members at Waikalua fishpond in Hawai’i. Photo credit: Jordan Medeiros

Brooklyn Arts Council announced in March 2022 an allocation of over $1.3 million to 238 Brooklyn-based artists and cultural organizations. This year marks the highest number of grantees and awardees as well as the largest amount of funding BAC has ever distributed. Art Spiel in collaboration with Brooklyn Arts Council features some artists who received a Brooklyn Arts FundLocal Arts Support, and/or Creative Equations Fund grant in 2022.

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Love Letters to Paris: Ekaterina Popova at Cohle Gallery

Ekaterina Popova in her studio, Photo credit: Helena Raju

For the past several years, Philadelphia-based painter Ekaterina Popova has been exploring the theme of interiors in her work. The interest in this subject began as a way for her to reflect on her upbringing in Russia, but eventually evolved into a deeper investigation of the overall idea of “home” and what it means to her now. Her paintings highlight the warmth and beauty of lived-in domestic spaces, including items and objects that refer to a human presence without including the figure.

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Feminist Connect

Curator Sally Brown in conversation with artists Marie Bergstedt, Amy Chaiklin and Laurence de Valmy

In conversation with the artists

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Marie Bergstedt: Fading, Hand embroidery on cotton fabric, 2017, 22”H x20”W x 1.25”D

Marie Bergstedt, Amy Chaiklin and Laurence de Valmy were featured artists in Feminist Connect, on view at Charles Adam Studio Project in Lubbock, Texas, in March, 2022 and as part of a larger online exhibition by the same name, running through February 2023. The artists Bergstedt (fabric), Chaiklin (drawing/painting) and deValmy (painting) discuss their processes, concepts and relations with the co-curator, Sally Brown, expanding on the discussion the exhibition provokes around the feminist lineage of art.

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Emily Mae Smith: Heretic Lace at Petzel

Emily Mae Smith, Heretic Lace, 2019, Oil on linen, 48×37 inches

Walt Disney has taught us that cartoons can be used to distract us while conveying the most serious of subjects. Understanding this Emily Mae Smith in 2014, introduced into her developing iconography an anthropomorphized, androgynist broom consisting of a featureless phallic shaft attached to a twig brush. This broom, a descendant of the demonic mops portrayed in sorcerer’s apprentice section of Disney’s Fantasia (1940), has become a signature image in her work. Joined with icons associated with desire and fear, Smith has used this figure as both a male and female trope, as well as an alter-ego. To greater and lesser degrees Smith uses her glossary of icons in some cases to engage in heady meditations on such topics as death, vanity, desire, history, etc. and at other times to enigmatically introduce such subjects with little or no commentary.

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