Pat Lay: Mapping New Interiors

Pat Lay, installation view in studio, photo courtesy of the artist

Pat Lay‘s Digital work conjures ancient iconography, or maps organized in what appears to be a binary logic. Throughout her abstracted digital and more figurative sculptural work she consistently reflects on the role of technology in our life, merging cultural cues with a seemingly mathematical order. For Art Spiel the artist elaborates on her interest in technology, what brought her to art, and her 42 year experience as an art educator at Montclair State University – both as a teacher and as the founding director of the MFA in Studio Art.

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Nina Meledandri: Somewhere in Between

Nina Meledandri, starting w/(a) line: 7.27.18 – 8.3.18, 2018, 2018, watercolor and ink on paper, 5 x 7″ each, photo: Nina Meledandri

Nina Meledandri ‘s images mostly come in multiples. With sensibility that is both poetic and analytical, she creates series of photographs, paintings, and frequently a combination of both. Altogether her body of work forms a vibrant and imaginative internal dialogue. She shares with Art Spiel some of her thought process, what prompts her imagination, and what has brought her to art.

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Joanne Ungar: Pain Relief

Joanne Ungar, Modern Muse, 59″x48”, wax, board, paint, pigment, 2019, photo courtesy of © 2018 + 2019 Joanne Ungar

In recent years Joanne Ungar has transformed found boxes into translucent paintings by embedding them in layers of wax. The forms are abstracted, but the narrative is evident. These beautiful objects carry the burden of their histories – boxes of pain killers, packages of cosmetics, or chocolate wraps. While their vibrant pigments may encapsulate broken dreams and their origin most likely resonates waste, their sheer alchemy uplifts. Joanne Ungar talks with Art Spiel about “Pain Relief,” her current solo show at Front Room Gallery, which just opened in March 1st, 2019. She also elaborates on her process and some of her forming experiences as an artist.

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Galen Cheney: Gritty Beauty

Galen Cheney, Light Falls, textile color, acrylic, and oil pastel on raw canvas, 40 x 36″, 2018, photo courtesy of the artist

In her bold abstracted paintings Galen Cheney often layers multiple media such as textile color, spray paint, oil pastel, acrylic, and collage to create complex images. Her paintings brings to mind a crossing between graffiti and abstract expressionism with a distinct sense of immediacy and gestural mark making. Galen Cheney shares with Art Spiel some of her background, ideas, and process.

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HyperAccumulators at Pelham Art Center

All photos courtesy of Alexandra Brock

Jeanne Tremel

Artist Talk: “HyperAccumulators”

Sat March 2nd from 2-4PM at Pelham Art Center

Hyperaccumulators are plants capable of growing in soils with very high concentrations of metals and are known for extracting contaminants; thus, helping the ecosystem. This duality of destruction and restoration underscores “HyperAccumulators” – the current vibrant group show at Pelham Art Center. In their upcoming artist talk, curators Alexandra Brock and Elizabeth Saperstein will lead the panel on how contemporary artists interpret connectivity between nature, toxicity, and possible regeneration. And not merely in nature. As curator Alexandra Brock says, “we have become ‘HyperAccumulators’ dealing with the everyday environmental and political climate we are living in. The artists are taking in all this- and helping us return to a better state.”

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Ryan Sarah Murphy – Arriving at an Unknown Endpoint

Ryan Sarah Murphy, Strike, 2015, found (unpainted) cardboard, foamcore, 26 ¾ x 25 ½ x 3 ¼ inches, Photo courtesy of Jeanette May Studio

Ryan Sarah Murphy‘s engaging multiple series of collages, photographs and videos are driven by material and process. Her process resembles a graceful and skillful dance – the steps are predetermined but the movement flow is intuitive and imaginative, or as she says, it altogether represents a collaboration between herself and the material.
Ryan Sarah Murphy shares with Art Spiel what brought her to art, some insight about her ideas, process, and current projects.

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Jackie Mock: Second Class Relics

Jackie Mock, Marie, We’re Listening, 2019, altered found object, 12 x 14 x 13 in (Altered typewriter with inlaid soil and stone from the Home of Truth ghost town in southern Utah, photo courtesy of Jackie Mock and Proto Gallery

Jackie Mock’s recent body of sculptures and installations is currently featured in her solo show, “I Want to Believe,” at Proto Gomez. Mock is a visual story teller who frequently mines in her work offbeat narratives from American history to question notions of authenticity and belief. For Art Spiel the artist elaborates on her exhibition and shares some ideas on her art.

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Re-Orientation at La Esquina Gallery

Carrying Herself as a Corpse (red), Samira Abbassy (2014) (oil on gesso panel), dyptych #2, image courtesy of the artist

The group show “Re-Orientations” at La Esquina in NYC features Samira Abbassy, Camille Eskell, Dhanashree Gdiyar, and Sheida Soleimani, 4 US based female artists who bring through figurative representation feminist perspectives rooted in the Near East and South Asia. The co-curators Natasha Stefanovic and Audra Lambert present these distinct feminist voices in context of “Orientalism,” the 1978 seminal and polemic book by renowned scholar Edward W. Said, a must read in Post-Colonial Culture Studies. Ranging formally from painting to embroidery, and thematically from identity to immigration, the images overall depict tragic and at times nostalgic moments rooted in the artists’ cultural background. Underscored with post-colonial sensibility, these intimate narratives humanize and defy the stereotype of what is “oriental.”

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Douglas Florian – Seeing Words

Douglas Florian, Beowolves, Oil on linen, triptych, 96″ X 95″ 2015-16

Douglas Florian‘s paintings resonate with hypnotic chants – repetitive texts or letters resemble spells or curses, a child’s scribbles, or ancient liturgical notes. His marks and vibrant pigments form altogether abstracted and rhythmic fields which entice you to take a close look, read, and simultaneously listen to your own inner voice. Douglas Florian shares with Art Spiel some background and ideas behind his work.

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Ashley Norwood Cooper – Grappling with Color of the Ordinary

Ashley Norwood Cooper, Deviled Eggs and Pink Cake, oil on panel, 16” x 20,” 2017, photo courtesy of the artist

Ashley Norwood Cooper is having a solo painting show at First Street Gallery in NYC. The show title, “The Likes of Us,” is taken from a line in “Waiting for Godot,” about the moon looking down on our ordinary lives. The first thing that caught my attention in Cooper’s work was the just right mix of raw quality and subtle sensibility to detail, depicting narratives that both intimate and universal. In this interview the artist talks about her process of painting from the imagination, her approach to color, and how she got to art.

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