BEVERLY FISHMAN: New Paintings
Opening Reception Friday, January 23, from 6 to 9 pm
JANUARY 23 – FEBRUARY 28, 2009, Wed – Sat 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m
Project Room I GENELL MILLER: Memories
Front Room I TODD ANDERSON: The Nearest Faraway Place
Media Room I MAYA ESCOBAR: you and your friends vol. 1
“Beverly Fishman: New Paintings” at Bruno David Gallery will be the first solo exhibition of the artist’s work in Saint Louis. On view, in the Main Gallery from January 23 to February 28, 2009, the show will include the most recent paintings made by the Detroit based artist over the last two years. Ms. Fishman will be giving a lecture on her work as part of the Sam Fox School Public Lecture Series on Thursday, January 22. Beverly Fishman is one of the preeminent artists of her generation: a pioneering painter whose work combines abstraction with the exploration of science, technology and medicine. Fishman’s latest work is a vibrant barrage of information derived from and alluding to charted systems and functions of the natural
universe. Fishman utilizes materials from paint and silkscreen, to polished and powder-coated metal to manipulate light and color, illuminating themes addressing abstraction, technology, medicine, and the body. The amount of information in the artist’s work is at once overwhelming and sublime: the mathematical waves and grids overlap in a seemingly endless supply of information. The work simultaneously describes order and chaos found in both the natural and the manufactured world. Fishman plots out natural phenomena, such as the visible light spectrum, through equations, and alludes to practices in color theory through juxtaposition and use of material. The paintings of Beverly Fishman are visual explorations of a scientific universe, a myriad of literal and metaphorical layers that capture the immensity of what the human mind can and cannot perceive.
In the Project Room, Genell Miller presents a series of recent paintings and drawings titled “TITLE” that explore formal concerns of pattern, repetition and scale, while hinting at her art historical influences. Miller created this series upon returning to St. Louis after staying 11 years in Rome, Italy, and her time among the old masters peeks through her craft. Her reiterations of flora are brought to life in flesh tones reminiscent of the whispy peach-pink of Raphael’s bodies. Her color palette is warm and nostalgic, a maternal embrace on canvas, and the use of repetitive line gesture is indicative of Miller’s exposure to the art history of Italy. The rough, charcoal history of each flower’s beginning often shows through, and the almost architectural investigation and rendering of the form allude to pages from Michealangelo’s sketchbooks. The suggestion of the traditional women’s crafts of quilting and sewing are evident in the grid-like repetition, which also conversely conveys a sense of mechanical mass production. Miller’s new work is a marriage of technique and sensibility, line and form, learned history and sense memory.
In the Front Room, Print Maker Todd Anderson is presenting a suite of Intaglio prints that stems from a desire to investigate implicit approaches to both landscape imagery and the discipline of drawing. The series also strives to share fantastic imagery that enables the viewer to freshly engage in the notion of wilderness in our present time. The artworks take the form of fine art intaglio and mixed media prints. The fictitious mountains and towers were formed through a nuanced and imagined drawing of rocks and cracks. These descriptive elements were repetitiously drawn, millimeter -by-millimeter, with needles and
the aid of magnifying glasses. In this way, the drawing mirrors a climber’s step-by-step approach to summiting a mountain. The hyper-abundance of repetitious mark making suspends disbelief, for no other reason, than the steadiness of the gesture. Through this approach to landscape, the suite aims to technically mirror the organic and evolving nature of actual wilderness environments. “The Nearest Faraway Place” offers refuge from the mundane and muddled circumstances of day-to-day life by
offering technically and aesthetically resolved imagery.
In the New Media Room, multidisciplinary artist Maya Escobar premieres a single-channel video titled "you and your friends vol. 1”. The video places together video footage shot at a house party by the artist and her friends in 2002 and a repeated series of words generated by the artist in 2006, reflecting on her life back in 2002. The left side of the screen flashes with text representing major events of the artist’s 19th year—as she recalled them four years later, while the right side plays recently edited footage taken during the year indexed by the text. The video juxtaposes the casual sarcasm of the hip hoppers gone wild with the obsessive cataloguing of a year of one's life, to create moments of dissonance and agreement, confusion and clarity. The piece examines the capacity humans have to construct our own evolving identity. It is a level of control unique to us. “you and your friends vol. 1” is an attempt to analyze and give structure to that process.