Works by Barbara Morse at UB

Barbara Morse: PoolIllustrations by Barbara Morse, whose graphite images of everyday objects are rendered in stunning realism and playful whimsy, will be on view at The Gallery at the University of Bridgeport from Jan. 19 through Feb. 29. The show, “Concepts in Sharp Focus: Works by Barbara Morse,”  is free.

The gallery is in the Arnold Bernhard Center, 84 Iranistan Avenue. It is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday to Friday and from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Morse’s illustrations, completed in graphite and sometimes highlighted with acrylic wash, take everyday objects—baseballs, a dress, tea cups, and Chinese food take-out boxes—and arrange them in novel ways to “get the viewer’s thought process to extend beyond the natural order of things and to suggest a range of emotions from humor to hope,” says Morse.

New members to exhibit in new year at Silvermine

“Figure” by Jak Kovatch, Director’s Choice, Silvermine

“Figure” by Jak Kovatch, Director’s Choice, Silvermine

The new year at Silvermine Arts Center brings the highly anticipated annual New Guild Members show plus exciting exhibitions featuring Director’s Choice, Jak Kovatch and works by multidisciplinary artist Grace Shanley. A reception 2-4 p.m.  Sunday, Jan. 8 launches the exhibit, which will run through March 4.

Since 1992, Director’s Choice, Jak Kovatch, has been working on a series of mixed media paintings, combining ink etching with oil painting technique, on printmaking or water color papers. His new exhibit explores this on-going series in multimedia works which will include paintings, sculptures and works on paper created by the artist.

“For me, the boundaries between pure drawing and pure painting are difficult to define in any exact terms,” says Kovatch. “When I work, I consider both ways of presenting images, regardless of the medium used. Using both drawing and painting in a single work, I think I achieve the best of two worlds.”

Kovatch is a native of Los Angeles where he studied at UCLA, Chouinard Art Institute, California School of Art, Los Angeles City College, USC and also attended Art Students League in New York. While living on the west coast, he became involved in printmaking and in 1952 studied and worked in the Lynton-Kistler Studio. He also worked in the animation department at Walt Disney Productions and designed stage sets for the internationally acclaimed theater director-choreographer Benjamin Zemach. When he moved to the east coast, [Read more…]

Samuel Owen Gallery: Stormtroopers attack Greenwich

The Samuel Owen Gallery  in Greenwich will open “Lego Wars,”  revealing a unique photographic exhibition from internationally acclaimed artist Dale May. The event will include the appearance of two costumed Stormtroopers from 4-8 p.m.

The “Lego Wars” series is a photographic study of popular culture, commercial advertising and nostalgia. As an adult, May revisits these tiny plastic Lego toys and photographs them in a way that returns them to the epic importance they once ha as a child.

Crafted in archival acrylic and backed with aluminum dibond, the work is [Read more…]

First solo show for Vito Bonanno

New Haven artist Vito Bonanno, whose work is familiar to anyone who has been keeping up with the Bridgeport art scene, is getting ready for his first solo show, at Eastern Connecticut State University. Their message:

Vito Bonanno’s art contains the essence of his life, feelings, thoughts and dreams, coupled around objects or topics that “get stuck in his head”, including traffic lights, grids, ceiling fans and graffiti. His work is image and concept driven and may incorporate any media which will fuel this expression.  Using spray paints, gouache, India inks, oils, acrylics and so on, he works on paper, canvas, or whatever support may suit.  Most of the characters or topics he draws are [Read more…]

FAC: Nomi Silverman tackles our ugly biases

On three separate print series, Nomi Silverman:  Giving Voice challenges the viewer to confront their own biases toward homosexuality and homelessness in her Matthew Shepard and Homeless sequences, and provokes an internal dialogue about the intoxication and often corrupting force of power in Shakespeare’s antagonistic anti-hero, Macbeth.

“Silverman, with an intense love of rendering the human figure, uses her subject matter to express concerns about liberty, fear and hope while thoughtfully sifting through the shifting shadows of darker social concerns,” explains the Fairfield Arts Center, which is mounting the show. It opens with a reception this Friday evening.

I first encountered Silverman’s work at HCC and am glad she’s still exhibiting locally. Her work is powerful stuff, [Read more…]

Hide/Seek finds quieter ground at Brooklyn Museum

Remember how the “Hide/Seek” show went off the rails at the Smithsonian nearly a year ago? So far, it’s smooth sailing at the Brooklyn Museum, where the infamous Virgin Mary-elephant dung piece created a firestorm in 1999.

“This time around, the reception to the show has been more subdued, and so far no major politician has thought to make a stink,” says Paddy Johnson. “About three dozen people from a Catholic group based in Spring Grove, Pennsylvania showed up to protest the exhibition on the weekend, though, and Nicholas A. DiMarzio, the Catholic bishop of Brooklyn, has called for the museum to pull ‘A Fire in My Belly.’ ”

If you remember, “Fire” was the video that the Smithsonian very quickly agreed to pull [Read more…]

Amy Simon: Yuan Zuo embraces beauty

Yuan Zuo The Medicine Man Is Not Back Home Yet, 2011 Oil on canvas 65 x 45 inches

“Visual Poetry:  Recent Paintings by Yuan Zuo” brings the work of this renown Chinese artist and teacher to Amy Simon Fine Art.

Zuo, who studied at the Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing, has been painting both in China and the U.S. for over twenty years.  He advocates a Chinese traditional sense of space, emphasizing color, creating lights and manifesting the beauty of the material.

Unlike many of his contemporary counterparts, Yuan Zuo is not afraid [Read more…]

22 Haviland St. Gallery: Illustration Celebration

Jahmane West, Haviland Street Gallery Illustration CelebrationIf you haven’t seen their work in magazines, museums, media of all kind, here’s a great chance to meet James Grashow, Guy Billout, and Jahamane West in  “Illustration Celebration” at 22 Haviland Street Gallery in SoNo.

The show opens with a reception Saturday, Dec. 3, from 5 to 7 p.m. The gallery will also be open that Sunday, Dec. 4, 12-4 p.m., or you can drop by through December on Wednesdays – Saturdays, 12-4 p.m. (closed on Dec. 24).

This exhibition also celebrates works by 24 artists from Haviland Gallery’s Collection, selections from Japanalia, and Gregory Cole Antiques, and (only on opening weekend) Jim Brunelle ceramics & Mike Dennan faux-a’s.

On the Art Trail: Alan Neider’s ‘Fall Collection’ at Gallery 305K

“Curtains & Dresses,” Alan Neider’s Bridgeport Art Trail exhibit opens at Gallery 305K on Saturday Nov. 12, with an artist’s reception from 3:30 to 6:30 pm.

The New Haven artist intimately explores fashion and glamour by utilizing the tools of the trade in the construction of his sculptural installation drawings and three-dimensional paintings. With his site-specific “Curtain” installation, Neider will investigate how we see the world around us while continuing his life-long examination of how paint and light affect shape and form.

Neider’s interest in fashion and glamour stems from a project he collaborated on with a fashion designer while living in Chicago in 1980. He has since created numerous series of drawings that address this heme. This series of 10 drawings, “Dress and Jewelry,” explores the excess inherent in that industry. He appropriately uses the sewing machine to draw. [Read more…]

Five questions (apiece) for Maria Carola and Steven Steele Cawman

“Place: Two Photographic Interpretations” intertwines two distinct art shows at the Fairfield Arts Center. Featuring the work of Maria Carola and Steven Steele Cawman, the show takes two already strong exhibits and made them more interesting by alternating opposing perspectives  on the world.

I naturally had lots of questions Maria and Steven, and they were kind enough to humor me…

Q: How did the PLACE exhibit come together? Did you know Steven before?

Maria Carola: Steven and I met three years ago as volunteers at FAC. We had both moved [Read more…]