Tuesday, December 10, 2019
Rabbits in Threads, Plein Air Painting Highlight August Gallery Walk
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Robb Putnam’s “Laburnum is made of fabric, thread, wire and mixed media. It’s 16 by 9 by 11 inches.
 
Thursday, August 1, 2019
 

BY KAREN BOSSICK

The two women standing at the bottom of Warm Springs ski run looked wide-eyed as they watched Burley artist John Horejs splash orange and lavender paint across the canvas where he planned to paint a grove of aspen.

“I don’t have the faintest idea where he’s going with that, do you?” one asked the other.

A smile crossed Horejs’ lips as he eavesdropped on their conversation.

 
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Silas Thompson, “Spring Chickens,” 40-by-30-inch oil at Kneeland Gallery.
 

“Working alone in the studio you don’t get a lot of feedback. Painting in public I get great feedback about how people feel about my work and I’ve learned a lot from the people who stop to watch, too,” he said.

Giving the public a chance to observe artists at work is part of the idea behind Kneeland Gallery’s annual  plein-air painting event going on today and Friday in Sun Valley ahead of Friday night’s Gallery Walk from 5 to 8 p.m.

The artists love to gab about their work, whether about the way they hold their brush or their penchant for cleaning brushes with hand lotion, rather than turpentine.

Plein-air painting—or painting in outdoor light--can be traced back to French Impressionist painters like Monet, who painted outdoors to capture the interplay of sunlight and other forces of nature. It’s found new life today as a public event.

 
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Lawrence Fodor’s Perseus Releasing Andromeda after Frederic Leighton, 84 by 80 inches at Friesen Gallery
 

Kneeland Gallery’s stable of artists are fanning out over the Sun Valley area today and Friday to render their impressions of local landscapes and other iconic images.

The group will be stationed around the white Reinheimer Barn at the south entrance to Ketchum today. On Friday they will take part in a Quick Draw from noon to 1:30 p.m. at Sun Valley Resort where they must paint within the confines of that 90 minutes.

Their efforts will then be displayed during Friday’s Gallery Walk from 5 to 8 p.m. at Kneeland Gallery, 271 N. 1st Ave. The Quick Draw silent auction will conclude at 6:30 p.m. Friday.

Participating artists are Steven Lee Adams, Ovanes Berberian, Jack Braman, John Horejs, Shanna Kunz, Lori McNee, Caleb Meyer, Robert Moore, Silas Thompson and Bart Walker.

 
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Caleb Meyer, “Afternoon Peonies,” 24-by-24-inch oil at Kneeland Gallery.
 

OTHER HIGHLIGHTS OF FRIDAY’S GALLERY WALK:

  • FRIESEN GALLERY, 320 1st Ave. N., will present Lawrence Fodor’s exhibition titled “a tireless hand,” which alludes to a victor Hugo poem of the same name.

    “It represents, metaphorically, many different aspects about my drive as a painter and the approach I take with my work,” said Fodor, who lives and works in Los Angeles and Santa Fe. “Painting is my best means of communicating, by a long shot, and I have tirelessly pursued building my vocabulary within the medium to more fully and inventively express myself. It is a nonstop job.”

     
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    Robb Putnam’s “Red Bear Head”, made of fabric, thread, glue and mixed media, measures 10.5 by 13 by 14.5 inches.
     

    Fodor’s large-scale abstract mixed media oil paintings boast a vast archive of historic masterpieces beneath the surface. They are meticulously executed homages to such Old World masters, such as Peter Paul Rubens, Michelangelo, Leonardo Da Vinci and ancient Greco-Roman sculptures.

    Fodor reverently draws the past into the contemporary present, obscuring, revising and re-contextualizing these images and themes for the 21st century.

  • GAIL SEVERN GALLERY, 400 1st Ave., N., will feature an exhibition of Oakland sculptor Robb Putnam’s delightful animal forms built with cast-off blankets, shirts, fake fur, rags, plastic garbage bags, leather scraps and glue.

    The sculptures evoke playful whimsical characters found in children’s books, but the characters are physically and psychologically vulnerable. They seem like overgrown stuffed toys—misfits whose demeanors both invite and possibly repel.

    Like mutant craft projects gone awry, their surfaces suggest that their skins have been torn away exposing their soft insides.

    “They’re wonderful animals,” said Gail Severn. “Robb repurposes Salvation Army clothes, etc.--what would otherwise go to the dump. He creates these animals and stitches them with dozens of little threads that end up hanging down.”

    “In both my sculptures and drawings I explore the murky spaces intersecting empathy fear, intimacy, humor, repulsion, the desire to touch or connect and the impulse to back away,” said Putnam. “Through these works I hope to expose a complex and contradictory human presence that mirrors our own vulnerability.”

    The gallery will also feature the work of Kara Maria, who is exhibiting for the first time at Gail Severn Gallery. She uses geometric shapes, abstract marks and colorful hues to reflect such political topics as feminism, war and the environment. Her most recent work features miniature portraits of disappearing animals, focusing attention on the alarming rate of extinction being caused by human activity.

    And the gallery will feature the work of Ed Musante, a veteran at Gail Severn Gallery who specializes in painting birds on cigar boxes and cigar box lids.

  • BROSCHOFSKY GALLERIES, 360 East Avenue, will be spotlighting oil on linen paintings by Russell Chatham, including one called “Spring on the Yellowstone River.”
  • WOOD RIVER FINE ARTS, 360 East Avenue, is showing traditional and contemporary artists who paint landscapes of the west, including new works by Richard Loffler and G. Russell Case.
  • GILMAN CONTEMPORARY, 661 Sun Valley Road, is showcasing a group exhibition celebrating the gallery’s 12 years. The show will feature the works of artists like Kelly Ording, who does acrylic on dyed canvas, and Rodney Smith, a renowned New York-based photographer who turned fashion photography into fine arts with iconic photographs featuring models skiing off roofs and standing on the edge of sailboats.
  • MESH Gallery, 420 4th St. E., will continue its exhibition, “Observing the Mountain Goat,” which features photographs of mother and baby in the mountains just north of Ketchum.

    And, of course, there will be photographs of Jeffrey Lubeck’s featuring scenes from the Sawtooth and other local mountain ranges. This month’s exhibition focuses on “Dawn” with an array of photographs that bring this short time period to life.

  • SUN VALLEY CENTER FOR THE ARTS, Fifth and Washington streets, continues its “Mirage: Energy, Water and Creativity in the Great Basin.”
  • FREDERIC BOLOIX FINE ARTS, 31 Leadville Ave., continues to feature quantum sculptures by German artist Julian Voss-Andreae, as well as paintings by the Modern Masters.

 

~  Today's Topics ~


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