In Chasing after Spirits, Barbara Bullock’s latest works at Seraphin Gallery, vestigial memories, oral tradition, characters, and abstractions do indeed chase each other through the artist’s fevered narratives. These huge structures, three-dimensional paintings spanning several different series of works, are close to the imagery one might experience as part of a vision quest. Profoundly cohesive, each work forms its own narrative world, but also flows effortlessly into sync with the others in the room. With African culture and ancestry as her primary point of departure, the milieu consists of luminous, hothouse colors, prints teased into infinite abstraction, and curvilinear floral, ... More » »
Joan Waldeigh Curran’s exhibition Accumulation, at Seraphin Gallery until Feb. 3, 2013, showcases her unique still life compositions consisting of plant life and the discarded and overlooked object: trash. Curran’s colorful gouache paintings on black paper are composed of discarded items from three different locales: A Wyoming quarry, the coasts of Ballycastle, Ireland and the streets of Philadelphia. Curran’s paintings elevate everyday junk removed from its exterior context and arranged by the artist to create striking compositions. The work discusses the value system humans use to deem things unworthy of possession but does so without being an environmental critique. Instead, ... More » »
In the “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” the albatross is an omen of both good and bad luck. Taking the seafaring bird as its title, Rebecca Saylor Sack’s latest body of work also revels in ambiguity. On view at Seraphin Gallery until March 25, the paintings in Albatross suggest creation and destruction. While these themes are evident in the artist’s large, titled works, the show also includes small, untitled, material studies using oil bar and spray paint. In the studies, the oil bar is used to add shine and dimensionality to the flat spray paint. These studies are primarily concerned ... More » »
The title of the exhibit Let’s Go Enjoy Nature! is pretty funny. There’s nothing natural about standing in a gallery looking at art–an imitation of life. But art is the sincerest form of flattery. And speaking of the joys of what’s unnatural, air conditioning in this beastly weather is just the ticket.
Hiro Sakaguchi is an honest curator. His curatorial statement for “I Just Can’t Get You Out of My Mind” at Seraphin Gallery reads: “I choose artists whose works I want to see again for selfish reasons.” Simple enough. And, as uncalculated as his curation may be, Sakaguchi still managed to weave together a diverse and talented group of artists he discovered in the Philadelphia-area, all of whom tackle conceptually and aesthetically complicated issues with ease. By using personal taste to navigate the curatorial process, one begins to understand just what it is that Sakaguchi is interested in: detailed, relatively small ... More » »
The photographer Victor Vazquez makes a virtue of his defects. His nudes, for example, are not erotic. Yet as photographs they carry potent ideas. A lady in feathers, for instance, only evokes Santeria. Alas, poor chicken! Vazquez is a Puerto Rican nationalist. But his political views are neatly disciplined by a potent witty formalism. In this show, that formalism is often simply a white line.
This week’s Weekly has my review of My Dog Speaks. Below is my copy with some pictures. Through the years artists have devoted gallons of paint and tons of plaster, clay and metal to the depiction of animals — beloved cats and dogs and heroic wild beasts. If an animal-loving artist makes a self-portrait, chances are a beloved pet will appear in the work. “My Dog Speaks” at Seraphin Gallery is a 13-artist group hug of the beasts of the earth.
From deep, Northwest Philly to Cape May and back, can Roberta and Libby trek it in one day. We’re revving up our very non-formula ones for some serious consumption of gas and art this Saturday. First off, you’ll see us at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education for the opening of Gimme Shelter which we helped to jury. (Forgive us, SCEE, for our driving transgressions today which are not so eco-friendly.)
Robert Goodman, Zzip, 200730 x 30 inches, oil, acrylic and spray paint on canvas Robert Goodman and Hiro Sakaguchi may seem like a surprising pairing. Their paint application and their content are soooo far apart. But perhaps that’s why the two of them at Seraphin Gallery, until Oct. 7, do not step on one another’s toes. Zzip detail Robert Goodman: Night Vision is painting as fireworks. The abstractions have a feeling of spontaneity and the look of the urban, neon landscape captured by a camera in motion. They have depth and space, they have light, they have detail and they ... More » »
Faten Kanaan Familie Muller’s Ottoman Sled 2006 Wood, Nacre, cuckoo clock pulley 40″x16″x14″ The holiday season is just around the corner at Seraphin Gallery, with a float for Santa in the back room–Faten Kanaan’s little hand-crafted sled–and a giant mummer’s costume by Walter Benjamin Smith out front. The sled is part of a group show in the back room, We’d Rather Not Tell You, a mix of work by gallery artists and others. (Our students at Tyler staged a show last week called Please Stop Talking, Please–pretty similar, huh)? The front room has a solo show by Smith, The Transcendent ... More » »Next Page »