Art Letter (11/6/09)
There’s some superb art coming on view this weekend.
You know how we can go to YouTube and embed a video on our website? Well, how about embedding a video in a painting - or a photograph - seamlessly? These are great - full of personal content, humorous, metaphorical and poignant. I love ‘em. (There are some great excepts on the gallery’s website.)
Like most sculptors David Smith drew beautifully and a healthy selection of outstanding Smith drawings and paintings on paper are on view at Russell Bowman. It is wonderful to see fresh material from a significant sculptor - a museum quality show, full of familiar motifs and divergent presentations of iconic Smith forms. Perhaps a revelation - or maybe just a beautiful exhibit.
Certainly we’re all familiar with decades of Jules Feiffer’s cartoons from 40 years of inclusion in the Village Voice and the New Yorker. Seeing them up close and personal is revealing, without the uniformity and squashing generated by reproduction. They’re good, direct, economical in execution, concise and pithy.
Those shows open tonight. Opening tomorrow is an insightful group show at MoniqueMeloche, with new works by gallery and invited artists. More cohesive than most group exhibitions, Sign of the Time presents divergent parts that coalesce to make a salient commentary.
On Sunday, is a one day show/opening/studio presentation at Bruce Thorn’s studio warmly referred to as Chicago’s 10 of senior artists getting together to present their work ensemble. I love it. Artists taking responsibility for getting their work out - just plain doing it without the interference (or assistance of a gallery. Want to really speak with an artist who’s been around, knows the scene and is comfortable taking about their art? Then go Sunday.
Over at FR Works on Paper is a presentation of old (maybe 50 years) industrial photographs showing the men and women who made honed the precision machinery of ‘the greatest generation.’ Hardworking Americans getting their due - in retrospect. And it’s a good thing hair styles have changed.
This is SOFA weekend. The opening was last night, but I was there when they were still installing. Maybe I’m changing. I used to find this show annoying - way too much glass. But after looking at it for years - and my becoming more interested in work that is accessible I’m finding the SOFA show at Navy Pier intriguing - a lot of beautiful pieces and no where near as much ‘attitude’ as were used to seeing at art fairs. Here’s a lot of pictures for you to make up your own mind.
Okay. No excuses. Go see some art. Support your community. Have fun!