May 25, 2018

Artist of the week: Leon Golub

Finally made it to the MET Breuer to see the Leon Golub show just before it closes on May 27th. So amazing to see this work close up, and experience the enormity of both the materials and subject matter. Golub's work is so much about power struggle, and it is expressed so perfectly through his materials. The violent torn and raw canvases, and the dry dragging of paint look almost as painful as the atrocities they depict. If I had to describe Golub's work with one word, it would be Monstrous. 

Excerpt taken from the MET's statement:
His devotion to the figure, his embrace of expressionism, his fusion of modern and classical sources, and his commitment to social justice distinguish his practice as an artist.
Alongside the monumental, terrifying Gigantomachy IILeon Golub: Raw Nerve features paintings from the artist's most important series....  that represent subjects of longstanding interest to the artist, from mercenaries, interrogators, and the victims of violence to political figures, nudes, and animals, all of them rendered in the raw, visceral style for which he is justly celebrated.
Together, these paintings attest to Golub's incisive perspective on the catastrophes that afflict human civilization and his critique of brutality and belligerent masculinity. The artist's work has much to teach us in the twenty-first century, as does his belief in the ethical responsibility of artists.
detail, Two Black Women and a White Man, 1986, acrylic on linen, 120 x 163 inches






detail, Two Black Women and a White Man, 1986, acrylic on linen, 120 x 163 inches

Two Black Women and a White Man, 1986, acrylic on linen, 120 x 163 inches

Installation view at the MET

The Conversation, 1990, acrylic on linen, 92 x 170 inches


Colossal Torso III, 1960, lacquer on canvas, 82 x 96 inches

Tete de Chevall II, 1963, acrylic on canvas, 81 x 81 inches

Combat I, 1970, offset lithograph



detail, Gigantomachy II, 1966, acrylic on linen, 9 x 24 feet


detail, Gigantomachy II, 1966, acrylic on linen, 9 x 24 feet


detail, Gigantomachy II, to show scale


Gigantomachy II, 1966, acrylic on linen, 9 x 24 feet


Leon Golub (1922-2004) was married to artist Nancy Spero (1926-2009)

Further looking and reading:
The Canvas takes Shape, on Youtube
The Paris Review
Leon Golub: Raw Nerve




Champ de Bataille, 1965, oil on canvas, 91 x 66 inches



Leon Golub in his studio


detail, Vietnam II, 1973, acrylic on canvas, 9 x 37 feet


Riot I, Lithograph

The Go-ahead, 1986, acrylic on canvas, 120 x 192 inches



March 22, 2018

the problem with deadlines

An  artist  without  a  deadline  is  like . . . . . . . . . . . . .....                        

I  am  good  with  deadlines.  I  have  actually  said  those  words.  What  does  that  even  mean?  It  does  not  mean  that  I  don't  absolutely  freak  out,  get  mean,  anxious,  impatient,  frustrated  and  generally  riddled  with  nerves  and  self  doubt,  because  I  do.  I  need  deadlines  to  make  me  insane  is  the  more  accurate  thing  to  say.  Maybe  I  should  replace  it  altogether  with,  I'm  not  good  at  deadlines  at  all,  I'm  good  with  the  outcome  of  deadlines.  I'm  good  with  good  results,  and  the  enormous  feeling  of  relief  and  accomplishment.  Deadlines,  if  you  make  them  and  keep  them,  will  give  you  the  confidence  to  keep  making  and  keeping  them.  Deadlines  keep  you  in  check.  They  keep  you,  even  if  you  are  simultaneously  a  frazzled  mess,  focused.
Deadlines  Are  The  Great  Motivator.  So,  yeah,  I'm  good  with  deadlines.

An  artist  without  a  deadline  is  like ... a  fish  out  of  water?  flailing  about  the  cabin  floor?   C'mon

Of  course  there  is  one  major  problem.

The  real  problem  with  deadlines  is  that  once  they're  over,  then  what.  You're  admittedly  a  little  high  on  yourself,  but  you're  exhausted  from  working  your  ass  off,  everything  is  a  wreck  around  you  because  you've  neglected  absolutely  everything,  and  you're  literally  slumped  over  the  studio  couch  wondering,  now  what  am  I  supposed  to  do..  Am  I  right?

Anyway,  that's  kind  of  where  I'm  at  at  the  present  moment.


March 14, 2018

Abstract Heart



FOCUS: Abstract Heart

Abstract Heart: Passion, emotion, deeply-held beliefs – how do we express and convey these concepts through an abstract vocabulary? Abstract Heart solicits work that speaks from the soul through a personal visual language. ...

Read more
www.woodstockart.org
March 17 – April 29, 2018
Juried by Katie Schmidt Feder
Director Garrison Art Center

EXHIBITING ARTISTS: 
Paulette Esrig, Nils Hill, Henry Klimowicz, 
Jerry Michalak, Samantha Palmeri, Tracy Phillips, Stephen Rose, Barbara Smith, 
Kat Stoutenborough, jd weiss

GALLERY TALK: FRI. MAR 23, 5 PM
RECEPTION: MAR 24, 4-6 PM

I'm pleased to be part of this show opening March 24th in Woodstock, NY. 
I'll have three paintings in it. And how nice they used my image for their advertising!

FOCUS: Abstract Heart




March 17 – April 29, 2018

Gallery Talk: Friday, March 23, 5 PM
Reception: Saturday, March 24, 4 – 6 PMMAIN GALLERY
JUROR: Katie Schmidt Feder, Director Garrison Art Center
AWARDS: Linda Freaney Award $100
Exhibiting Artists:
Paulette Esrig, Nils Hill, Henry Klimowicz,
Jerry Michalak, Samantha Palmeri, Tracy Phillips,
Stephen Rose, Barbara Smith Gioia,
Kat Stoutenborough, and jd weiss
Introduced in 2017, the FOCUS series features the work of ten artists in a theme-based exhibition. Selections are curated by a different juror for each exhibition with each artist represented by multiple examples of their work in service to the particular show’s theme.
Abstract Heart: Passion, emotion, deeply-held beliefs – how do we express and convey these concepts through an abstract vocabulary? Abstract Heart solicits work that speaks from the soul through a personal visual language.

In The Press



February 9, 2018

How to Enjoy Bad TV

Watching bad TV has never been so fun. I've been working on these crumpled tracing paper drawings in the evenings with the television going. Needless to say I watch a lot of Cheers and Frasier reruns. Thinking of a better title for them.........

Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, detail, Magic II, 2017, magic marker on tracing paper

Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, Magic I, 2017, magic marker on tracing paper, 19 x 24 inches

Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, Magic II, 2017, magic marker on tracing paper, 19 x 24 inches
Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, Magic III, 2017, magic marker on tracing paper, 8.5 x 11.5 inches
Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, Magic IV, 2018, magic marker on tracing paper, 19 x 24 inches
Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, detail, Magic IV, 2018, magic marker on tracing paper

Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, Magic V, 2018, magic marker on tracing paper, 19 x 24 inches
Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, detail, Magic V, 2018, magic marker on tracing paper
Samantha Palmeri Contemporary Artist
Samantha Palmeri, view of 5 drawings


February 4, 2018

"Byron Kim's painting ritual" by Two Coats of Paint

Byron Kim’s painting ritual

Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 1:20:09, 2009, acrylic and pencil on canvas mounted on panel, 14 x 14 inches

Every Sunday, Byron Kim makes a painting of the sky. One hundred of these purposefully unremarkable small canvases are on view at James Cohan through February 17. What makes them unremarkable are their size and the undramatic skies they depict – not the complex, sublime sky paintings made by, say, great Dutch painters like Aelbert Cuyp and Jacob van Ruisdael. Instead, they are simple renderings with a limited palette of blue and white, and a bit of light grey for the odd cloudy day. Rather than offering an expansive view or capturing the subtle color ranges in cloud forms, these paintings convey a dainty sense of claustrophobia and ennui but no real sense of joy or wonder. It is as if the monotonous ritual of making a painting a week were more important to Kim than the painted image itself.
Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 6:19:01, 2001, acrylic and pencil on panel, 14 x 14 inches
Thus, in Kim’s exhibition, quantity, habit, and process seem to trump the quality of the individual paintings. Reinforcing this point, Kim has handwritten a prosaic note about the day on each painting, perhaps as an indication that Kim’s ambition and concentration have gone missing in the mire of family life and all the yawn-inducing tasks that a successful artist must perform. Kim may be living the dream, but it doesn’t seem very transporting.
Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 3:26:08, 2008, acrylic and pencil on canvas mounted on panel, 14 x 14 inches
Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 4:20:10, 2010, acrylic and pen on canvas mounted on panel, 14 x 14 inches.
Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 1:22:17, acrylic and pencil on canvas mounted on panel, 14 x 14 inches
Byron Kim, Sunday Painting 8:20:17, 2017, acrylic and pencil on canvas mounted on panel, 14 x 14 inches
Byron Kim, installation view.
The project reminds me of On Kawara’s Date Paintings. Each day Kawara crafted a painting of the date in the ubiquitous sans serif typeface Helvetica. In the box where he stored the painting, he also included a page of the newspaper from the city where he was working. Like Kawara, Kim is interested in the idea of maintaining a serial approach rather than engaging with the materiality of paint. But Kim’s project also conjures a link to more painterly perceptual artists, such as Lois Dodd and Giorgio Morandi. Morandi spent his life painting easel-sized still-lifes that depicted small cups, bowls, and other tabletop vessels in tertiary colors, even as World War II raged around him. Lois Dodd has painted the landscape around her familiar Maine homestead for decades, and the resulting body of work is a moving record of a quiet and dedicated life.
Both Morandi and Dodd focus narrowly on translating their immediate surroundings with great painterly nuance onto canvas to convey the emotional timbre of their lives. In this distracted age, especially as the big picture becomes increasingly daunting, it’s undeniably tempting for artists to employ this kind of approach as a kind of refuge. Kim presents an alternative escape, whereby grim routine isolates the artist and decontextualizes the personal content of his work. It’s rather dispirited, and perhaps a sign of the times.
Byron Kim: Sunday Paintings,” James Cohan Gallery, Chelsea, New York, NY. through February 17, 2018.
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