Lizbeth Mitty & Dana James: The Thread

at M. DAVID & CO. GALLERY extended thru APRIL 21st, 2019 and an artist talk on April 14th at 4PM with Lilly Wei

Lizbeth Mitty in her studio. Photo courtesy of the artist.
Dana James in her studio. Photo courtesy of Drew Reynolds

I met with rising talent artist Dana James and her mother, veteran NYC artist Lizbeth Mitty, prior to their joint exhibition, “The Thread,” which opened March 15th at M. David & Co. Gallery in Bushwick. It was late February, and the artists were trying to answer the lingering question: Which new works should we display?

The debate was an extension of a conversation that had been running for months. Throughout the creative process, alone in their respective studios, the artists had frequently exchanged feedback on works in progress, eschewing criticism for constructive, “technical” suggestions that served to “open the floodgates” and renew the other’s creative energy.

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Nota Bene with @postuccio

Microscope Gallery, Underdonk, Transmitter, TSA New York, Studio 10, Amos Eno, The Border Project Space, Green Door Gallery, Scholes Street Studio

Microscope Gallery, Underdonk, Transmitter, TSA New York

Above are just a handful of hints and glimpses of notions of formal analogousness I noted among four quite different works by four different artists in four different excellent exhibits, all of which opened at the 1329 Willoughby building in Bushwick on the same night earlier this month. 

At top left, an instant of a video involving a ‘vectorial world’ by Lisa Gwilliam & Ray Sweeten at Microscope Gallery . At top right, one of Amy Butowicz‘s  amusingly alt-quotidian metamorphs in her bizarrely joyous solo show at Underdonk . This piece in particular seemed immediately suggestive of Humpty Dumpty’s pants, or The Penguin’s pants, or the pants worn by some bloviating politician in a parodical caricature by Daumier. I’m not sure if they’re supposed to be anything of the sort. I am sure I want pants, or I guess culottes, of just that sort. Moving along, the painting to which those pants, or maybe ‘pants,’ point is by Alessandro Keegan . It’s one of several strong works he’s showing in “Heed,” a winning two-person show at Transmitter  that features also very strong work by Angela Hiesch . At bottom left, a sculpture that seemed to imply a distilled tincture of time frozen still in atemporal liquid motion, or something of such a strangely wordable sort, in “Object of Desire,” a large group show curated by Amanda Martinez  at TSA .

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Così via at Centotto

Opened Dec 16

All photos by Sharilyn Neidhardt

Len Bellinger at Centotto

On a rainy December night with little else to recommend it, I made my way to residential gallery Centotto to find it warm, lively, and packed with many of the luminaries of the cozy East Williamsburg scene. Although the weather was so cold and unpleasant that there were scant Christmas shoppers on the L train, artists and art lovers were packed snugly into Centotto for the opening reception of the latest exhibition, “Così via” (Italian for ‘so forth’).

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Las Gravitas at ODETTA

Photos by Sharilyn Neidhardt, unless otherwise indicated
A show of swirling color and geometry finds ways to discuss complicated issues of violence and social collapse.

What drew me to ODETTA on a very chilly Saturday were the colorful, pagoda-like structures in the main space. Human-scale structures that echo lanterns or birdcages are covered in awkward spiky garlands of colored plastic tubes. The festive air created by the riot of bright color seems fun at first, and it’s only on second inspection that a viewer realizes the color is coming from spent shotgun shells.

Margaret Roleke, ‘pop pop’ (installation view) spent shot gun shells, wire, zipties, steel boxes. 2 boxes each approx. 9’h x 5’w x 5’d

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A Visit With Linda Schmidt

By Catherine Kirkpatrick

All Photos by Catherine Kirkpatrick

Just as it is hard to look at certain Matisse paintings and not feel the radiant sun of the Cote d’Azur, it is hard to see a piece by Linda Schmidt and not imagine a beautiful light-filled space. Recently she invited me to her studio that looks out over the low industrial rooftops of Bushwick, and seems, even on overcast days to be bright and filled with serenity.

Linda Schmidt working on a canvas

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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”