DISPATCH - Jun 6, 2012 (10:35 p.m.)
Memorial Day Weekend was a wild one for art exhibitions. Once again, I took to the streets to check out as many art openings as time and travel would allow. Here's a peek at the art and artists captured on camera from Riverhead to East Hampton.
FRIDAY (MAY 25) - "The 29th Annual Springs Improvement Society Members Show"
I caught the end of the Friday night opening. Even then, people gathered in groups outside of Ashawagah Hall and inside the exhibition. Donations were gathered through the final minutes for the maintenance of the popular art exhibition venue. The Springs Improvement Society is in charge of keeping Ashawagh Hall in tip-top shape. There were plenty of familiar faces in the show.
Teri Kennedy and her husband, Kevin, stand next to her assemblage "Abby's Hoot."
Alex Russo with his painting "Sunset Over Mujeres"
Charles Waller with his wall sculpture "Madness."
Kris Warrenburg with her painting "Accabonac." The view is from the Merrill Lake Sanctuary, a coastal marsh that overlooks Accabonac Harbor in Springs.
SATURDAY (MAY 26)
Saturday night had more art openings than were possible to attend. I decided to make stops at Art Sites in Riverhead; Sara Nightingale Gallery in Water Mill; Eric Firestone Gallery in East Hampton; and finish the evening at Vered Contemporary. Here's a Visual Diary of my travels.
ART SITES - "Geometry of Color - Gabriele Evertz" and "New Work - Claire Watson"
The opening was in full swing when I arrived. Between catching up with artist friends, I managed to photograph both artists and glimpse at some of the art.
Gabriele Evertz stands besides her newest work in the exhibition. The color fields were so intense that my camera couldn't decide where to focus. The visual vibrations beckoned from across the long gallery and demanded to be examined.
Claire Watson among some of her sculptures in her latest series. Her newest works use smoking pipes and gloves to question traditional ideals and roles of male and female. Each are laced with understated humor that may surpise and encourage a longer look at the work.
SARA NIGHTINGALE GALLERY - "Justin West: End of an Error" and "David Byer-Tyre: Imported from Africa, Made in America."
This two person show was a sleeper. I didn't expect anything close to the art that greeted me after walking in the front door. Larger than life figurative sculptures by David Byer-Tyre commanded attention throughout the gallery. Colorful paintings harkening to street art or fantasy art by Justin West were hard to look away from.
The mood was celebratory with plenty of people admiring the work, having fun, and recording the moments. Here are a few that I grabbed for my own:
Artist David Byer-Tyre with some "friends"
David Byer-Tyre stands among some of his figurative sculptures at Sara Nightingale Gallery.
Justin West beside one of his paintings in the show.
Gallerist Sara Nightingale with exhibition curator Georgette Grier-Key.
Sara Nightingale insisted that I become part of the art fray. I handed her my camera and tried to look natural in front of artwork by Justin West. (It's not so easy!) Photo: Sara Nightingale.
ERIC FIRESTONE GALLERY - "THE HABERDASHERY"
I had high expectations for this show and the art did not let me down. Like last year's season opener, there was plenty of art that grabbed my attention and made me wonder. Plus, the opening was a lot of fun.
"THE HABERDASHERY" presents art that channels the concepts of vintage style, men's finery, panache, pomp and current lifestyles manifested in a range of contemporary art. The show was curated by fashion designer Ishi Glinksy.
Bianca Guillen and exhibition curator Ishi Glinsky stand beside "Swing" by Nari Ward ("Swing, 2010. Shoe tips, car tire, shoe tongues and rope, 32 x 32 x 16 inches).
Vadis Turner stands beside “Primrose Path Engulfed in Smoke.” The piece is inspired by Shakespeare's Ophelia. It's part of a series that makes use of materials used as ceremonial adornments and places them in different context to conjure the "state of becoming something else" and how rites of passage are a gateway to transformation, said Turner. (“Primrose Path Engulfed in Smoke,” 2011. Ribbon, clothing, quilts and vintage bedspreads, 68 x 65 x 5 inches.)
Gallery owner Eric Firestone stands with Willie Cole’s “Chair,” 2007. Shoes, wood, PVC pipes, screws and staples, 39 x 48 x 37 inches.
“Soundsuit” by Nick Cave, 2011. Buttons, wire, bugle beads, basket, upholstery and mannequin, 96 x 36 x 24 inches.
The exhibition opening of "THE HABERDASHERY" at Eric Firestone Gallery.
Detail of “The Man of Steel” by Greg Lauren, 2010. The sculpture features layers of vintage Superman comics. (Oil on paper, vintage Superman comics, thread, buttons, 69 x 18 x 18 inches)
David Colman stands beside his work “Foot-candle.” Magnets are used to affix the pieces in the assemblage into place. This allows the still life sculpture to become a wall piece, said Colman. Using magnets also means the piece can be altered. Foot-candle is a unit used to measure illumination. (“Foot-candle,” 2012. Old media, magnets, steel and burlap, 30 x 40 inches.)
Ryan Metke stands beside his work "The Cowood Rider." The piece was inspired by the work of guilder Luis Copote, whose shop is in the same building as Metke's Brooklyn studio. "The Cowood Rider" points to the beauty of guilding--an art form that is fading, said Metke. ("The Cowood Rider," 2011. Wood, acrylic and gold powder on panel, 48 x 48 inches).
VERED CONTEMPORARY - "Art on the Edge 2012"
"Art on the Edge 2011" made a splash last summer and I didn't want to miss the opening of this year's edition. The exhibition is an annual survey of "New Contemporary Art featuring the most provocative new painters, sculptors and photographers working in their respective mediums today," according to the gallery. This is the third annual "Art on the Edge." It was curated by Damien Roman.
The art was interesting, exhibiting artists were happy to discuss their work, and the crowds didn't let up until after the exhibition closed.
Vered Contemporary's Director Damien Roman in front of "YUM" by Jessica Lichtenstein. ("YUM," 2001. UV print on acrylic, 37 x 89.5 x 2 inches)
"Crime Scene Map" by Peter Buchman, 2012. Mixed media, 29 x 49 inches.
Vered Gallery co-owner Janet Lehr inside Vered Modern.
Kelly and Adam Sandler stand beside his painting "Lip." Kelly is a recurring model for her husband. Pink and black appear frequently in Adam Sandler's work, he said. Brush strokes, color and contrast are important in his work, he said. ("Lip," 2011. Oil on wood, 50 x 40 inches.)
Carly Haffner and Phil Haffner at the opening.
Vered Contemporary's Director Damien Roman with exhibiting artist Elektra KB and her piece "Theocratic Republic of Gaia Catalytic Mantle," 2011. Fabric, felt, pigment prints on canvas with thread, 65 x 75 x 24 inches.
Vered with Anne Easton.
Exhibiting artist Elektra KB speaks with a fan outside of Vered Gallery.
BASIC FACTS: This was the Second Annual "Run-around-to-Hamptons- Art-Openings Marathon." Here's a link to the first: http://hamptonsarthub.com/2011/06/02/visual-diary-exhibition-exploration/
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