Category Archives: Philadelphia Abstract Art

Non-representational art in all media including drawing, painting, photography, sculpture, prints, video, on-line, writing, etc.

Leaf

Bill Scott, Hollis Taggart GalleriesLeaf and Line, oil on canvas, 63″ x 42″, Bill Scott, 2017

Bill Scott: Leaf and Line, Hollis Taggart Galleries

This month, Hollis Taggart Galleries will present Bill Scott: Leaf and Line, the artist’s seventh solo exhibition at the gallery, featuring twenty-five of Scott’s recent paintings. A catalogue accompanies this show with condensed critiques by eight contributors – artists, curators and writers – who offer very personal and inspired reactions to the painter’s lively compositions.

Bill Scott’s new body of work is rooted in his classic vibrant palette, fluid brush strokes and masterful balance of abstraction. Propelled by inspiration from nature, the painter continues his exploration of form and color in a fresh way. References to the natural world, details of leaves, blades of grass, branches and discernible elements of flora are boldly juxtaposed against areas of pure hues and spirited abstraction that dances with myriad details. The show once again is a testament to Scott’s imposing ability to dance the line between abstraction and representational, creating a tension in the viewer’s mind that asks the question; do we know this scene that is depicted before us? It is through this tension and this line of questioning that the viewer’s curiosity is peaked.

Bill Scott, Hollis Taggart GalleriesA Storybook October, oil on canvas, 48″ x 45″, Bill Scott, 2017

Demonstrating the confidence and control of a seasoned painter, Scott’s most recent studio offering reveals a freer, more expansive pictorial space and use of white. The surfaces of the works are comprised of layer after layer of paint – a skill he has been honing his whole career.  Complex, but never muddy, the overlapping elements in the paintings appear both spontaneous and carefully arranged at the same time.  A Garden in the Studio bursts with energy and is like most of Scott’s work, an affirmation of the sheer joy of painting. Similarly, in Leaf and Line, vague pictorial plant references are placed among undulating free forms of shapes and color and all set against a dramatic expanse of yellow in the upper quadrant. Harmony is always achieved with the painter’s virtuoso talent and pure intuition to combine hues, structure and movement.

Bill Scott, Hollis Taggart GalleriesHomage, oil on canvas, 60″ x 55″, Bill Scott, 2017

Scott, who lives and works in his native Philadelphia, spent what he considers to be pivotal periods of time working alongside Joan Mitchell in France and Jane Piper in Philadelphia.  He formally began his career studying at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1974, an institution at which he was to become a teacher for many years.  He is represented in countless museums, private collections and institutions, and he is a noted scholar on the work of the French Impressionist, Berthe Morisot.

Bill Scott: Leaf and LineHollis Taggart Galleries , Chelsea, 521 W 26th Street, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10001

March 15th through April 28th, 2018

Thank you to Ginx Hudgins for the content of this post.

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Unwilling

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy

EXPLORE MELANCHOLIA AT HAVERFORD’S CANTOR FITZGERALD GALLERY

HAVERFORD, Pa.- What if we saw sadness not as a giving up or giving in, but a getting out? What if, instead of being seen as a passive pain, feeling deep sorrow was understood to be an act of resistance? What if, given the current political and cultural moment in which so many feel ignored, maligned, or repudiated by the systems and people in power, mourning was not just an understandable reception, but a useful action against those systems? A new exhibit in Haverford College’s Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery, opening March 23, showcases the work of five artists from across different media to grapple with such questions of power, agency, and melancholy.

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy, curated by Vanessa Kwan and Kimberly Phillips, proposes a re-consideration of melancholia as defined through our contemporary condition. Resisting its historical definition as an affliction that creates disorder or inactivity, this exhibition reimagines passive sadness as a powerful refusal, a conscious (or unconscious) “standing aside,” a willful production of generative failures and resistant potencies. Each of the five contributing artists begins with the idea that outside the boundaries of “contentment” resides a potent flourishing. Unwilling is a resistance and a proposition: it responds to the profound cultural reckoning we are witnessing in this moment in time, as the boundaries and exclusions of state-defined citizenship become increasingly fraught.

The exhibition crosses disciplinary boundaries. Dance artist Justine A. Chambers explores choreographies of resistance, growing out of a studious and embodied interpretation of all the minor gestures on the way to hands raised in surrender. Sculpture- and performance-based artist Mike Bourscheid mines absurdities in relation to our cultural preoccupations with masculinist productivity, while social practice artist Ginger Brooks Takahashi works to create new networks of value in the production of food, drink, and community. (Her piece in the exhibit is a collaboratively created-and consumed-beer.) The “weeping” willow is at the center of media artist Noa Giniger‘s multi-faceted take on reversals of sadness and the refusal to succeed, and poet and critic Billy-Ray Belcourt positions mourning as a defining aspect of an active and resistant subject and proposes that the future must address this subject head on.

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy will be on view March 23 through April 27 at Haverford College’s Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery. To celebrate the exhibit’s opening, there will be several events during its first week. On March 22, ahead of the official opening, a roundtable with four of the featured artists and the two curators will be held from 4:30 to -6:30 p.m. in the College’s new Visual Culture, Arts, and Media (VCAM) building, room 201. On March 23, Justine A. Chambers will perform an all-day, campus-wide, site-specific commission, ten thousand times and one hundred more. And later that day, at 4:30 p.m., there will be a talk with the curators followed by a reception at 5:30 p.m., featuring Ginger Brooks Takahashi’s Wyrt Blod Gruyt, a custom-made beer commissioned specifically for the exhibit and brewed in collaboration with Meredith Rebar Williams and Home Brewed Events. For further event details: exhibits.haverford.edu/unwilling.

Unwilling: Exercises in Melancholy is made possible with support from the John B. Hurford ’60 Center for the Arts and Humanities. The exhibition is organized in conjunction with the Hurford Center’s 2017-18 faculty seminar “The Arts of Melancholy,” which is led by John B. Whitehead Professor of Humanities and Professor of Music Richard Freedman.

Overseen by the John B. Hurford ’60 Center for the Arts and Humanities and located in Whitehead Campus Center, the Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery is open Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays until 8 p.m. For more information, contact Matthew Seamus Callinan, associate director of the Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery and campus exhibitions, at (610) 896-1287 or mcallina@haverford.edu, or visit the exhibitions program website: www.haverford.edu/exhibits.

Haverford College is located at 370 Lancaster Avenue, Haverford, Pa., 19041

Thank you to Rebecca Raber for the content of this post.

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Gardens

PICTURE-PERFECT GARDENSSet between two flowing fountains and tree-lined pathways, the James A. Michener Art Museum’s Pfundt Sculpture Garden captures the essence of Bucks County’s rolling terrain. Credit: Photo by B. Krist for VISIT PHILADELPHIA®

PHILLY GALLERIES SET THE SCENE FOR PICTURE-PERFECT GARDENS

Art Often Comes With A Side of Floral Beauty In Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA – Throughout the Philadelphia region, art galleries and museums sit amid colorful gardens, quiet woodlands and serene meadows that accentuate the art found in both indoor and outdoor galleries. Here’s a look at some of the region’s museums and attractions that celebrate beauty inside and out:

  • Abington Art Center  This vibrant cultural organization, known for its summer concert series, occupies part of the 27 acres of historic Alverthorpe Manor in Montgomery County. Inside, three galleries show as many as six regional and national art exhibitions annually. Outside, Katasura trees dot a meandering walkway through Sculpture Park, which is open and free to the public 365 days a year. 515 Meetinghouse Road, Jenkintown(215) 887-4882abingtonartcenter.org
  • The Barnes Arboretum & Foundation In suburban Merion, the Barnes Foundation’s 12-acre arboretum is astonishingly diverse for its size, with more than 2,500 varieties of woody and herbaceous plants, many rare. The arboretum opens to visitors May to September. The Barnes Foundation on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway honors its horticultural legacy with landscaped lawns, trees, park, fountain, contemplative walkways and outdoor seating on its 4.5-acre site. That location’s Garden Restaurant also features outdoor courtyard dining, while internal gardens throughout the building encourage visitors to imagine they are strolling directly into the landscapes they’re admiring on the walls. Arboretum, 300 N. Latch’s Lane, Merion, (215) 278-7200; Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway(215) 278-7200barnesfoundation.org  
  • Brandywine River Museum of Art  It takes just one glimpse of the Virginia bluebells, Cardinal flowers and holly and bayberry bushes that border this onetime gristmill to understand why this landscape has served as muse for so many local artists. The Brandywine River Museum is internationally known for its unparalleled collection of works by three generations of Wyeths and its fine collection of American art. Outside, visitors can join guided walks through the wildflower and native plant gardens, which were dedicated by Lady Bird Johnson and, during the annual plant sale on Mother’s Day weekend, can take home seeds cultivated right on the grounds, as well as lovely in-bloom plants. 1 Hoffman’s Mill Road, Chadds Ford(610) 388-2700brandywinemuseum.org  
  • James A. Michener Art Museum This Bucks County destination is home to the Edgar N. Putman Event Pavilion, a 2,700-square-foot indoor-outdoor space designed by architecture firm KieranTimberlake. The pavilion showcases museum programs—jazz nights, lectures, lively family events—within an elegant, all-glass structure that extends into the Patricia Pfundt Sculpture Garden. Inside, the museum’s eight galleries accommodate special exhibitions and a 3,000-piece permanent collection, including many Pennsylvania impressionist paintings that capture the essence of the county’s rolling terrain. 138 S. Pine Street(215) 340-9800, Doylestown, michenerartmuseum.org  
  • Penn Museum – After viewing the impressive collection of international art and artifacts inside this historic University of Pennsylvania museum, visitors can relax in two magnificent gardens. The Warden Garden, now wheelchair accessible, features a classic koi pool, expansive lawns and mosaics created by Louis Comfort Tiffany. The Stoner Courtyard, built on the philosophy that places for nature are necessary in our built-up world, includes sculptural pieces by A.S. Calder, a cobblestone walkway and a beautiful marble fountain. Inside, guests marvel at ancient objects including African and Native American masks, Maya sculpture and Egyptian mummies. 3260 South Street(215) 898-4000penn.museum
  • Philadelphia Museum of Art Best known for its international exhibitions and world-renowned collections of more than 240,000 works, the crown jewel of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway is more than a museum. It’s also the unofficial gateway to Fairmount Park. The museum’s bi-level sculpture garden, with its combination of terraces, lawns, flora and water features, showcases an ever-changing sculpture collection overlooking Fairmount Park, the Schuylkill River, the four-acre Azalea Garden and the grand, neoclassical Fairmount Water Works. Works on display include large-scale pieces by Claes Oldenburg Ellsworth Kelly and Sol LeWitt. 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway(215) 763-8100philamuseum.org
  • Rodin Museum Movie-theater magnate, philanthropist and Rodin collector Jules Mastbaum, known for his eye for elegance, hired architects Paul Cret and Jacques Gréber to create this jewel-box museum. The venue’s intimate settings are perfect for taking in the extensive Rodin collection, one of the greatest single collections of his work outside Paris. Visitors seem to enjoy the front garden’s reflecting pool and tapestry of magnolia trees, shrubs and colorful flowers—some dating back to the 1920s—as much as they do The Thinker and Eternal Springtime. 2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway(215) 763-8100rodinmuseum.org  
  • Second Bank of the United States – Inside this Parthenon-like structure is a first-rate collection of approximately 200 historic portraits of Founding Fathers, early leaders, explorers and others, many by Charles Willson Peale. Just steps away are several gardens. The Signers’ Garden, with native plants and trees, commemorates the creators of Declaration of the Independence. The 18th-Century Garden replicates formal English gardens of the day with geometrically patterned raised flowerbeds, walking paths, and a pergola. The Rose Garden and Magnolia Garden are secluded, colorful and fragrant refuges. Second Bank, 420 Chestnut Street; Signers’, 5th & Chestnut Streets; 18th-Century, Walnut Street between 3rd & 4th Streets; Rose and Magnolia, Locust Street between 4th & 5th Streets; (215) 965-2305nps.gov/inde  
  • Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library Textiles, paintings, prints, furniture and ceramics dating from 1640 to 1860 make the former home of Henry Francis du Pont a favorite for fans of Americana. Nature enthusiasts are drawn to the 60-acre garden nestled in the 1,000-acre country estate. Highlights of the garden include eight acres of azaleas, naturalized bulbs displays, peonies and primroses. Trails lead from the garden through rolling meadow, woodlands and waterways. If the kids get antsy, a short trip across the Troll Bridge leads to the Faerie Cottage in the Enchanted Woods. 5105 Kennett Pike, Winterthur, Delaware(800) 448-3883winterthur.org
  • Woodmere Art Museum – At the top of the Chestnut Hill neighborhood of Philadelphia, this gem of a venue tells stories of Philadelphia’s art and artists, including N.C. Wyeth, Benjamin West and Violet Oakley, as well as new and emerging contemporary artists. The 19th-century stone Victorian mansion sits on six acres dotted with sculptures by Dina Wind and other Philadelphia-area artists surrounding Harry Bertoia’s sinuous fountain sculpture, Free Interpretation of Plant Forms9201 Germantown Avenue(215) 247-0476woodmereartmuseum.org

VISIT PHILADELPHIA® is our name and our mission. As the region’s official tourism marketing agency, we build Greater Philadelphia’s image, drive visitation and boost the economy.

On Greater Philadelphia’s official visitor website and blog, visitphilly.com and uwishunu.com, visitors can explore things to do, upcoming events, themed itineraries and hotel packages. Compelling photography and videos, interactive maps and detailed visitor information make the sites effective trip-planning tools. Along with Visit Philly social media channels, the online platforms communicate directly with consumers. Travelers can also call and stop into the Independence Visitor Center for additional information and tickets.

Thank you to Visit Philly for the content of this post.

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Calm

Deann Mills, March 2018 at Muse GalleryHeat Rises, 48” x 48”, oil on canvas

Madness and Calm,

Deann Mills, March 2018 at Muse Gallery

March 1st through April 1st, 2018, Muse Gallery52 North Second Street, Old City, Philadelphia, 19106, 215. 627. 5310

First FridayMarch 2nd, 2018 from 5:00 – 8:00pm

Artist’s receptionSunday, March 11, 2018 from 2-5 pm

Artist Statement:

“When starting a painting, I try to be crazy and paint with whatever feels good at the moment:  old acrylic test paint, rollers, squeegees, stir sticks, wire mesh, oil sticks, and lots of smearing and dripping.  It is pure madness and lots of fun.  After a time, the painting has to calm down, be edited, have a composition and hopefully a dominant color.  My paintings are all about the tension between madness and calm, my striving to keep the energy, chaos and color while imposing an order and coherence.”

Mission: Established late in 1977, the Muse Gallery is an artists’ cooperative dedicated to encourage and promote its members’ artistic expression through abstract, conceptual and representational forms. Reflecting an aesthetic that awakens awareness, the Muse Gallery affirms the shared experience of art between the artist and the community.  Please see the membership page to view a detailed history of Muse.

To join the Gallery: Muse Gallery is always interested in potential new members. We are often fully staffed and maintain a waiting list. Please visit our membership page.

Thank you to Charlene Lutz for the content of this post.

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InvisAbility

InvisAbility, Art in City Hall Gallery

InvisAbility

February 12 – March 23, 2018
Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, Room 116
Reception: March 7, 2018, 5-7 p.m. in Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, Room 116

The Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy presents InvisAbility, an exhibition featuring the work of professional artists with disabilities. The exhibit is in partnership with five programs from the Philadelphia region that provide opportunities to artists with disabilities: Allens Lane Art Center’s Vision Thru Art programArt Ability from Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, Center for Creative WorksCultural Arts Center of SpArc Services, and Moss Rehab’s All About Art program. The exhibit is featured in City Hall within the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, Room 116. A reception is tentatively planned for March in celebration of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Month.

37 Featured artists:

Meri Adelman, Nancy Alter, Robin Antar, William Bolds, DoN Brewer, Joanne Brothers, Kelly Brown, Ronald Bryant, Elizabeth Core, Martha Cowden, Jenny Cox, John Creagh, Charles Domsky, Alysse Einbender, Gerard di Falco, Terri Fridkin, Zila Friedman, Gregory Gans, Michael Gieschen, Cindy Gosselin, Tim Heflin, Clyde Henry, Michael Hogin, Thomas Jennings, Cindy Lally, Sarah Lewis, Eric Mohn, David Neiser, Timothy O’Donovan, Olubunmi Ojo, Victoria Pendragon, Randy Perin, James Sanders, Carla Schaffer, Sriharsha Sukla, Maxim Tzinman, Anthony Zaremba.

As an exhibition without any apparent central subject matter, InvisAbility is a break from City Hall’s standard juried thematic showcases. However, it does follow a trend of recent exhibits aimed at raising awareness of Philadelphia’s diverse and talented cultural community. InvisAbility affirms the notion that within the People’s Building, the people behind the art, their stories and concerns matter as much as the art they create. By weaving art with identity, the show aims to provide some insight into the creative experience of artists living with a disability, and perhaps even challenge traditional notions of quality.

Artist Nancy Alter:

“My current work reflects personal physiological struggles in the day to day struggles with my MS symptoms. Through the deconstruction and reconstruction of monotype prints, there is great satisfaction on how unrelated pieces fit together to make a whole. It is an expression of push and pull and the physiological rhythm of the body.”

Artist DoN Brewer:

“Living with Crohn’s disease has both positive and negative effects of my artwork. On the one hand, I stay home on the computer a lot and have created an on-line persona that reaches a wide audience. On the other hand, sometimes I don’t feel well enough to travel to art shows and events, to attend art workshops or even to write my art blog. My fans don’t know me as a disabled person; they support me for who I am, as an artist.”

InvisAbility runs thru March 23rd.

Questions about Art in City Hall? Contact City Hall Exhibitions Manager Tu Huynh, tu.huynh@phila.gov or call (215) 686-9912

Thank you to City Hall Exhibitions Manager Tu Huynh for the content of this post.

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