September 3, 2010 — January 2, 2011
Ironisence, 1708 Gallery’s latest satellite exhibition at Richmond’s historic Linden Row Inn is inspired by a recent Facebook exchange with critic Jerry Salz, surrounding work which may be described with two words - irony and sincerity. Curated by Richmond artist and 1708 board member Amie Oliver, Ironisence will open on Friday, September 3, 2010 and will be on view through Sunday, January 2, 2011. The proceeds from all art sales benefit the artist and the exhibition programs of 1708 Gallery.
Ironisence features works by Pam Anderson, Mary (Ginna) Cullen, Tim DeVoe, Erik Gonzalez, Christine Gray, Chris Gregson, Barbara Tisserat, and Henry Winfiele.
Several months ago I participated in the following discourse among Facebook friend and curator Jerry Salz and all the artists and writers who keep tabs on his status updates. His observations and the long train of comments serve as a salon without the salon... a forum where the silly, relevant and topical float through the Interwebs day and night.
Many months ago Jerry posted the following:
A feeling- Content of our moment, one that I see many artists working with, is the simultaneous experience of Irony AND Sincerity. Befits our complex. constellational time; embrace of chaos, desire, confusion, love, & uncertainty; alchemically transmutes stew into a new whole, a real content. A verifiable feeling/experience still unnamed (Ircerity? Sinrony?).
I immediately realized that this interplay of irony and sentimentality would be a timely theme for an exhibition at the 1708 Gallery’s satellite venue The Linden Row Inn. My solution for the thematic brand for Jerry’s zeitgeist of the moment is “Ironisence.”
This “brand” holds an entirely new level of relevance now that Jerry is featured in the cable reality show “Work of Art”. Jerry’s there to give the program a semblance of street cred.
Joseph Tuohy, a Facebook salonista asked “Does a little irony actually amplify the sincerity and vice versa?”
We leave that to you, the viewer, to decide.
1708 Gallery Satellite Exhibitions Liason and Curator
I am interested in the space between sentiment and pure formalism, between beauty and its shadow. My works on paper, by appropriating and adding to the collected “evidence” of my life, pay homage to art’s unique ability to give permanence to the fleeting.
Anderson is an artist residing in Richmond, VA who works in drawing and installation. She has been teaching at Collegiate School since 1998 and counts her students among the most inspiring parts of her life. She is the 2009 recipient of the Theresa Pollak Prize for Excellence in Fine Art given by Richmond Magazine. Her most recent work, Ghosts from a Middle Place was shown in February 2010 at Kathryn Markel Gallery in NYC where she is formally represented.
Mary (Ginna) Cullen
My concept in creating these two books was to use standard book making techniques with unusual materials. I find that copper adds a sensual quality to the work and contrasted with the use of handmade paper, matt medium and encaustic wax. These books also move which allows them to take different forms.
Cullen is a painter and a book artist. For the past 10 years she has taught Book Arts at VCU in the Master of Interdisciplinary program where she is also on the administrative team and an advisor.
I push faux materials beyond their limits of representation and back to the edge of reality, where their truth becomes subjective. I anthropomorphize these artificial materials and surfaces to allow these ‘facades’ to break free of their architecture, rather than receding into the background.
DeVoe was born in New Milford, CT. He received a BFA in sculpture from the Maryland institute College of Art and an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Paint, in its most basic material existence, is a means of covering. Understandings of reality, again in their most basic material existences, are also methods of covering. As the persistent and ubiquitous existences of religion, science, art and philosophy can attest, the exact and full nature of reality is far from perceptible. Like a small child attempting to throw a blanket over the ghost in his room, humans have been covering existence with all manner of blankets since the beginning of communication. History, science, music, art, math... languages of all kinds act in a similar fashion as do layers of paint: always occupying a simultaneous relationship between both revelation and deception. It is within this conceptual framework that my most recent work has developed.
Originally from Omaha, Nebraska, Gonzalez received a BFA in Painting and Printmaking from VCU in 2008 and will earn his MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Yale University in 2010. His works have been exhibited in numerous solo and group shows in Richmond, Virginia since 2003.
Painting from elaborate models, I orchestrate fantastic landscapes which offer a self-aware escapist indulgence to the viewer. The scenario presented in each painting constructs a fictive vision of nature by revealing the cultural mythologies that misrepresent it. The mechanics of the illusion are revealed through gestural brushwork alongside highly rendered passages. This conjures a magical spectacle where the banal coexists with the fantastic in a humorous play between criticality and whimsy.
Gray lives in Richmond and teaches at VCU in the Painting and Printmaking Department. She has exhibited nationally at venues including: Rare in New York, Okay Mountain in Austin, D.E.N. Contemporary and Mark Moore in Los Angeles, Project 4 in Washington DC, Alfred University, Towson University, and University of Tennessee Chattanooga. She was recently named the winner of the 11th annual Miami University Young Painters Competition for the $10,000 William and Dorothy Yeck Award.
I consider my work classical. I use traditional materials. I concentrate on the fundamentals of painting. My images are rooted in memory and influenced by contemporary issues. There are visual associations in my work such as diagrams, maps, structures and landscapes but these relations are not specific or conscious.
Gregson studied at the Studio and Forum of Stage Design in NYC and worked as a stage artist in New York City prior to concentrating on painting. He has exhibited throughout the U.S. and Europe at numerous galleries and museums. His work is in many distinguished corporate and private collections throughout the United States.
The pulse of my work resides in the character of the drawing---minute fluctuations in the pressure and velocity of mark captured in grains of printed pigment. Borrowed or sampled drawings, readily reproduced through the lithographic process, are combined with images generated by my hand, inviting comparison of means and meanings. The accumulation of elements in the spare compositions conjures associations without targeting a clearly delineated content, thereby evoking a familiar feeling of indeterminate perception and response---the earnest expression of a skeptical perspective.
Tisserat was born in Denver, Colorado. Her MFA in Printmaking was earned from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. She is on the faculty of the Department of Painting and Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University and teaches lithography.
My paintings stem from an interest in the process of painting, leading me to explore the concept of time and the materials comprising an artwork. Using large quantities of paint I create multidimensional works that are sensual, succulent and atypical, dwelling between painting and sculpture.
Winfiele is a young artist who resides and works in Richmond, Virginia. He attended VCU’s Painting and Printmaking program, receiving his B.F.A. in 2009 and has had gallery shows throughout the Richmond area as well as Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, Maryland.