Wednesday, February 12, 2014

OTW:





OFF THE WALL at Parallel Art Space

A group exhibition with works that in various ways
converse with and diverge from the traditional wall format. 


Gilbert Hsiao

Stacie Johnson
Alex Paik
Kim Tran
Ken Weathersby

February 22 – March 23, 2014 Reception: Saturday, February 22, 6 pm – 9 pm Hours: Sat/Sun 1-6pm and by appointment Parallel Art Space: 17-17 Troutman Street #220, Ridgewood, NY 11385

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The viewing of all painting from the Old Masters to the “Super Flat” is, among other things, an experience with space. Different than the storied development of pictorial illusion in art, the space that is considered in “Off the Wall” is the actual, real-time environment of the art object; areas surrounding it, in front of it, and most especially behind it, in this case, the supporting wall itself.

The interest in and involvement with the wall behind the art perhaps has its roots in the rich tradition of the construction of the painted image, built up as it is, through the accretion of layers of pigmented medium, thin and close to the gessoed substrate in some areas, thick and impastoed in others. The Grisaille method of underpainting is an excellent example of this historic push and pull movement of paint through space as in this technique, the white highlights of a painting are built up in layers to a kind of shallow, bas-relief topography across the picture plane. The art makers long standing occupation with movement, both away from and out toward the viewer in space has modern examples in Frank Stella’s “Exotic Bird” series, wherein arabesque, curly-q drafting tool shapes leap brightly off the canvas, and in the monochrome, “Spatial” paintings of Lucio Fontana, wherein slashes through the stretched canvas pull the space just behind the artwork directly into viewer consideration.

The works in “Off the Wall” in some ways respond to these patterns of painterly innovation, contributing substantively to the discourse from their own points of intention and concern. Paired with a Post-modern era’s consideration of context, these artists, through the formal engagement of the art objects environs, pull context into co-operation. Existing both within the disciplines of painting, sculpture and design as well as in the liminal spaces in-between, the works in “Off the Wall” stay rooted to the wall, but not confined to it, vibrating out across the divisions of two-dimensions to three and back again.


In the way that painters weave layers of shape, line, and color across the canvas, so too does Ken Weathersby inter-lace his wood-based constructions with paint, collaged images and found objects. On whether the material focus in his work pushes his concerns toward the sculptural, the artist has offered, “Because of the emphasis on physical aspects of painting, and the sometimes elaborate wood structures that develop, people have asked me if they are becoming sculpture. The answer is no, even if the thing becomes free-standing, it’s still painting. Responding to the conditions of painting gives me something to work against. “ By working against the concerns of painting, the artist mines the oft times under-appreciated areas at the margins of consideration, the edges, the borders of form and the spaces in between.


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in print:



New American Paintings #110 features my recent paintings. 
This is my third appearance in NAP.