A Hudson artist whose work really lingers in my mind has a new exhibit coming up Saturday, this time on Hudson Street, Manhattan. Unfortunately, I’ll be even further upstate than Hudson that day, but that’s no excuse for you not to visit.
Eric Rhein‘s show, “Transmutation,” runs Saturday, Feb. 12 through Saturday, April 9. Mr. Rhein is known for his wire drawings, combining human forms with animal and/or plant life, often touching on mystical themes. He also mixes his own photography, often taken on Fire Island, or maybe vintage shots of male nudes, with found objects or metal castings of leaves and twigs.
“Images of nature are used as a metaphor for the cycles of human experience: birth, life, death and regeneration,” Mr. Rhein explains.
Holland Carter, a New York Times art critic, writes that in Rhein’s work “the combination of art and craft, delicacy and resiliency, feminine and masculine, is exquisitely wrought and is, as it should be, seductive but disturbing.”
The exhibition venue, Boxoffice, is in a seventh-floor loft in the Printing House building in the southern fringe of the West Village.
Boxoffice, which operates Saturdays from 1-6 p.m. and by appointment, is written about in a story on “home gallerists,” in the Times. Gallery owner Bernard Leibov was managing director of a design studio until he got laid off in early 2009.
A few years earlier, Mr. Leibov, an investment banker turned brand strategist who is now 46, had attended a Landmark Education workshop — a self-actualizing program that owes a lot to the ’70s-era est movement — eager to shake a corporate career and start one in the arts. He began curating shows featuring artists from his native South Africa. He also made a pilgrimage to Joshua Tree, the art world’s alternative universe in the California desert, which inspired him to make his own work.
By March that same year, he mounted his first home show, with Joshua Tree artist John Luckett.
Mr. Leibov’s relationship with his apartment has been similarly rejuvenated. “I’d been looking for ways to pep it up,” he said. “I had felt a lack of energy when I came home. Now, it’s fantastic. I get to live like a big-time collector.”