Realities–four posts from students on First Friday exhibits


Here are several posts by students from the University of Pennsylvania, in Colette Copeland‘s writing art criticism class.

Other realities from Alex Cohen
Post by Jesse Reppaport

Alex Cohen’s exhibit at Rodger LaPelle Galleries challenges traditional reality by exploring the malleability of time and space. He depicts dream-like images imbued with movement and emotion.

Cohen is a native Pennsylvanian from Newton who received his BFA from the University of Pennsylvania in 2008. The show at LaPelle is his first solo exhibit

Alex Cohen
Transportation by Alex Cohen

In dreams we don’t always see things in whole form, yet we always seem to know what we are seeing. Cohen’s piece Transportation conveys a similar effect. It includes representations of various modes of transportation from horses to wheeled vehicles to space crafts, yet none of these are more than sections, blurs, or strokes that fully convey meaning without much detail. He alters perspective to better suit the movement of the piece.

Alex Cohen
Atomic by Alex Cohen

Movement is a key aspect to Cohen’s work, as seen in Atomic.

Some pieces are serene, with calmer movements and tranquil settings, while others initiate an unsettling feeling both due to movement and depictions. Oddly enough, the pieces in the show on either side of the gallery tended towards one of these feelings. A dynamic was created with overall chaos on one half and tranquility on the other.

Beauty in globby life forms
Post by Evi Heilbrunn

Sara Horne
Sara Horne, Secret Garden, Glass and Fiber

“Oceans, Microscopes & Fungi,” by glass artist Sara Horne at Muse Gallery, features those aspects of the living world that are avoided or never sought out.

In pieces such as “Secret Garden” and “Polyps,” Horne asks us to recognize the existence of these transparent, but living globs.

Horne explores the living dangers we are constantly fighting, fleeing, and vaccinating away. In her representations of “Streptococcus” and “E.Coli,” Horne uses fused glass to artistically examine bacteria. In these pieces, Horne draws a distinction between what society deems as illness, from what the art world may coin as beautiful. With the use of bright colors – circular, purple dots in “Streptococcus” and red, yellow, and clear dots in “E.Coli” – Horne presents microscopic examination as an art in and of itself.

Sara Horne, Polyps
Sara Horne, Polyps

The exhibit encourages us all to re-evaluate the seemingly insignificant, microscopic elements of the natural world. Though we may not interact with them willingly, Horne alerts us to their existence, their influence, and their presence in our lives.
Muse Gallery
Jan. 28 – Feb. 22, 2009

A Black and White Narrative: Fresh or Jaded?
Post by Megan Weil

John Andrulis
John Andrulis, Lake Jackie, Central Park West

Silicon Gallery is now featuring black and white photographs of New Jersey native John Andrulis in a exhibit titled “Philly to New York: A Black and White Narrative.” The images guide you on a light-hearted journey from New Jersey to Philadelphia to New York. The show “tells the story of place,” Andrulis said, and portrays everything from “street photography to cityscape to landscape.” The show also maintains a sense of transience that carries you through the storyline with pictures of bikes, bridges, cars and boats.

The show includes some photographs that capture a single moment, but tell a lingering story. Images like “Manhattan Bridge” fall into this category and accomplish what the artist intended. Andrulis has a keen eye for dimension, space and focal points; each photograph captures a unique figure caught in the midst of movement. For example, “Lake Jackie, Central Park West” is an innovative shot of a bird against the hazy, blurred Manhattan skyline and “Atlantic City” features an old lifeguard boat against summertime beach activity.

The show has its clichés–expected images like the Brooklyn Bridge and the rock in Central Park or landscape photographs such as “Shells” and “Sand and Snow” that remind me of the pictures novices take when they get their first camera.

But Andrulis also tells an engaging story of the East Coast.
The exhibit will be up through February 28.

Light of day: Al Gury at F.A.N.
Post by Cindy Na

Al Gury
Al Gury, Autumn Sunrise, acrylic

This month, F.A.N. Gallery in Old City continues its tradition of showcasing the works of regional artists with its Al Gury exhibit, “Recent Paintings.” Gury is the head of the painting department at PAFA.

Each of these acrylic landscape paintings depicts a certain time of the day, from dawn to dusk. Gury draws on his mastery of gradations and fusions of colors to imbue his paintings with a pastoral and illusionary quality. Hazy washes of purple cloak certain scenes in a gentle veil, warm yellow glows emanate from inside the comfortable looking houses, and bursts of orange scatter in from amidst the trees to announce a beautiful sunrise. Gury’s collection of breathtaking scenery, enhanced by his skill in altering color and light, makes me long for those lazy summer days at the family cottage.
F.A.N. Gallery
February 6th to the 28th


al gury, alex cohen, cindy na, colette copeland, evi heilbrunn, jesse rappaport, john andrulis, megan weil, sara horne



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