Sunday, February 21, 2010

the Dallas art world part 1

This semester I am making an effort to go to art openings and really look at what is going on in art. I started off in November, actally, with Esteban Pastorino Diaz at Photographs Do Not Bend. I've really liked his aerial images since I first saw his work at PDNB several years ago.
Several other galleries in the area had openings as well, so I went over Holly Johnson, where Kim Cadmus Owens' work was on display, and I ran into some people I know, and then they sent me over to Marty Walker where Eric Salle's work was up. I ran into a couple of my professors from UTD here.
Diaz's work was my favorite of the evening, and Holly Johnson had some pieces up by Dornith Doherty, who had the previous show, which were amazing. The show was called "Archiving Eden: II." Doherty takes x-rays of seeds from a seed bank and then makes patterns and pictures with the semi transparent images. She also had some large lenticular photographs- remember the stickers that changed images when you moved them? Like that, but huge.
In January I went back to PDNB, joined by Scotty. Diaz was still up, and
Rhondal McKinney had work in the smaller gallery- farm families and landscapes in black and white. Her triptych's of negatives are a little similar to what I'm doing now.
We went on to Holly Johnson for William Betts' "Surveillance". He creates large scale paintings of security camera images using a software program. This time Scotty ran into people he knew.
We finished at Marty Walker where Ted Kincaid was showing. I was intrigued by the title: "I Do Not Want the Constellations Any Nearer/ LA Skies" and the work was equally intriguing.
The next weekend was John Pomara, one of my professors, at Barry Whistler. He crosses between abstract photographic images and painting- again, very large scale (noticing a theme?)(Click on John Pomara to the left on the Barry Whistler site to see more of his work). 500X had a juried group show opening with an interesting variety of work.
The next opening was a Friday night at UTD- the faculty show. It's interesting to see the range and type of work that the different professors produce. Upstairs was my friend Florence Waingaru's MA thesis show, a culmination of lots of hard work, and a commentary on consumerism in the US contrasted with Kenya, where she is from.
Last weekend Leila and I went down to CentralTrak, which is a residency program/gallery connected to UTD for "Transitive Pairings: Body Image." I was most impressed, as was Leila, with Gabriel Dawe's work. Formerly I had seen and loved his small scale embroideries, but for this show he built large armatures that he then strung with thread. One of these covered the whole wall of his studio, up the ceiling. He videoed the process and played it on fast time- showing how he went up a ladder to hook the thread at the top and then went down to hook it at the bottom and so on. It reminded me of the God's Eyes that people used to make in the seventies, but so much cooler.
Leila was getting tired, but I really wanted to hit one more show- PopUp10 in uptown. This is not a permanent gallery, but one where a curator finds an empty store front and uses it for a temporary exhibition. I bribed her with promises of a treat, and she behaved beautifully. It was quite a mishmash of work- some good, some not so compelling. Afterwards we went across the street to Border's for a cookie and latte and ended up scoring some great $1 deals. All in all, Leila had a good time. She was impressed by Gabriel's work as well.

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