Posts Tagged ‘City Art Gallery’

A Recent Trip to Columbia, SC, To See Exhibits by Some of SC’s Most Talented Female Artists

September 29, 2014

Editor’s Note: Sorry there is hardly any notice of the Vista Studios show, we just ran out of time and had to work on the Oct. issue. It was in our Sept. issue and I made several social media posts.

I made a quick trip to Columbia, SC, about a week ago to see some fantastic works by six talented woman before it was too late. Like the white rabbit in “Alice in Wonderland” – I’m always running late, but here’s a warning so you won’t miss out. Go see these shows – some right away before they end. (Offered in order of time running out.) Vista Studios, in Columbia’s Vista area is presenting “Operatic Threads”, a group exhibition, including paintings by Tish Lowe in the Main Gallery and “Threads: Gathering My Thoughts”, a collaborative installation by fiber artist Susan Lenz and graffiti artist Michael Krajewski, on view in the Atrium. Both exhibits will be on view through Sept. 30, 2014.

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In the main gallery at Vista Studios was an exhibit of classical oil paintings by Tish Lowe (classical Italian style). When I see paintings like this it always reminds me of trips to major Midwestern art museums. Except for the setting, you feel like your looking at works by old masters. I’m sure to a lot of younger folks they feel this style is “oh so old”, but there is life in these works that you don’t often see in more contemporary works. And by contemporary I mean works being made by younger artists filtered through today’s art departments at universities and colleges around the country.

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I’ve included an image of some nude studies for the folks in Greenvillle, SC, so they can get a chance to see one of the art world’s classic subjects – people who are not wearing anything. You’ll have to search very hard to find any nudes in that city. Some museums there paint over certain parts of classic nude works.

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Good thing there are a lot of reflections from the glass

The atrium at Vista Studios is showcasing a collaborative installation by fiber artist Susan Lenz and graffiti artist Michael Krajewski. Again, this trip was about seeing works by some of Columbia’s best female artists. I’m not much into graffiti of any kind, and although I’m old enough to have seen many a cave drawing – it’s just not my cup of tea. Like the great break-up line – It’s not you – it’s me.

The installation by Susan Lenz is a wonder to behold – hard to photograph and hard to describe – you just have to see it for yourself. And to do that you’re going to have to hurry, as it is scheduled to come down Sept. 30, 2014 or the day after. Lenz has been making fantastic art out of collected materials for years now – where she got all that thread is mind boggling.

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I asked her if some the baskets had false bottoms and she said no. This is the second version of this piece, and I hope we see it again somewhere, but I imagine storage is a problem. Perhaps some company involved in fabric will purchase it for their lobby.

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One of the great things about the work is that Lenz designed it so people could walk through it and get up close and personal with the work. That way you can discover all the different color combinations and how the light hits it in different spots to make highlights that catch your eye.

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And, do make sure they have the lights on when you go see it. When I first got there I checked out Tish Lowe’s works first, then ran into Susan Lenz and started talking with her about the installation. I keep saying that things didn’t look the same as photos I’ve seen on Facebook and about 15 minutes into our conversation she realized that the lights were not on yet in the atrium. And, pop – there it was – the sparkling piece I’d seen pictures of. That’s what happens when you get talking – details get left out.

So quick run and go see this exhibit.

The City Art Gallery in Columbia’s Vista area is presenting “The Art of Kirkland Smith”, on view through Oct. 11, 2014. Smith is a classical painter who began creating contemporary assemblages using post-consumer materials as an evocative way to drive home the message of the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling. The only classic thing here will be toys you haven’t seen in years because you chucked yours in the trash.

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Smith’s assemblages have become a familiar item in SC’s art scene. Her work of Steve Jobs won the first People’s Choice Award at the first ArtFields® event in Lake City, SC, and some of her works are on view at the SC State Museum in Columbia in the exhibit, “Building a Universe,” on view through Mar. 16, 2015, which features creations by artists whose work deals with space and the universe, either directly or conceptually.

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“The Tree of Life”

When you get up close to Smith’s works, you’re amazed at the items that make the work – items we all know from daily life or our childhood. I’ve included a self-portrait of Smith and then a close up of one of her eyes. It’s a heck of a way to “paint”, but she pulls it off very well. Once you realize that the items only have to represent a certain “color” you get how it works, but when you see the objects used – it really makes you think. Like a little green Army soldier holding a bazooka – making up part of an eye. That’s strange.

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A self-portrait

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Just the eye – close up

And, the point is – all these items are better off in a work of art than filling our landfills. These plastics will never go away in our lifetime.

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An abstract work by Kathy Casey

Of course when I’m at City Art Gallery there is always much more to look at upstairs and downstairs besides the main exhibit. Here’s a work I would have liked to take home with me. But, alas I’m just a poor editor/publisher of an arts newspaper. Look – don’t touch – don’t buy.

The Goodall Gallery in the Spears Music/Art Center, at Columbia College, in Columbia is presenting “The Big Paint: New Works by Eileen Blyth and Laura Spong,” on view through Oct. 13, 2014. These are BIG, wonderful, abstract paintings.

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“The Big Red” by Laura Spong – a little washed out

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Detail of The Big Red – again a little washed out

This is the show that had me itching to get to Columbia. BIG abstract paintings by two of my favorite abstract painters in Columbia. And, I wasn’t disappointed. Just sitting in a pretty good sized exhibit space looking at works that were as big as 8 ft. x 16 ft. made me feel like I was a Texan – where everything is BIG. I mean it’s not often you see an exhibit where there are only six works and they fill the space. The smallest work in the exhibit is big – for normal paintings, but then we have Big paintings and Jumbo paintings.

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“First Black Line” by Eileen Blyth

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Detail of “First Black Line” – close up

When works are this big it’s not only good to enjoy the size itself, but to explore the details of different sections of the work – up close – like you would look at a normal painting. I could have cut sections of these works out and been happy to have a wonderful single work.

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A view of all but one painting

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A quick grab shot of people to show the scale of the works

My favorite was “The Big Red”, by Laura Spong. I really like seeing red in abstracts, but I also liked the “First Black Line”, by Eileen Blyth for its big open spaces and light shades with hints of strong color. I can only dream of having a home so large that I could have both on display side by side, while I just gazed at them both as I made out my bank deposits from my big Texas oil wells.

If you’re someone who likes abstract paintings – you need to go see this show.

The Richland County Public Library’s Gallery in its main branch on Assembly Street in Columbia is presenting “All the In Between – My Story of Agnes,” by Laurie B. McIntosh. An exhibition of paintings telling the cradle to grave story of a life well lived. It’s on view through Jan. 5, 2015. It’s an interesting tribute from a daughter to a mother. You might have seen these works at the first ArtFields®.

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I used to get to see the exhibits at this library space on a regular basis when I was delivering papers, but since I stopped that, I haven’t been hearing about their exhibits to put them in the paper each month. As I was telling some of the artists I met that day during my trip to Columbia – Columbia is not the best at communicating what’s on exhibit there – outside of Columbia.

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This show is one of the biggest I’ve seen in that library space by one artist. McIntosh’s exhibit will make you feel like – “Gee, what have I done to honor my mother?”. My mother was a bookkeeper and she wanted me to become an accountant. That didn’t happen, but I think she liked the fact that I chose the arts to do my work. Something very unexpected in my family.

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The paintings are simple, but tell the different chapters in McIntosh’s mother’s life. At the very end, she has a work for the date of her mother’s death and then one last work, a few months later when the remaining family members took the ashes of both mother and father to a college campus where the two met and spread them around. Now that’s a storybook ending.

Go see these exhibits, if you hurry you can see them all – they’re not too far apart, three within a few blocks of each other.

City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, Calls for Ongoing Artist’s Submissions for Gift Gallery

May 9, 2014

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Wendyth Wells, the Gallery Director at City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, would like to begin a new program featuring smaller pieces of art and fine craft in sizes not to exceed 16″ in any direction to be displayed in their newly renamed Gift Gallery.

The work must be presented in a professional manor and submitted by JPEG with title, medium, size and retail price accompanying each image. If the work is selected, a three month Artists Contract will be sent for consideration with the completion returned with the art work and consignment list. The three month agreement allows a continuous rotation of smaller work in the smaller gallery adjacent to the Main Gallery. If the work does not sell (within three months) it must be removed and replaced with others if requested by the Gallery Director.

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Current Small Works Gallery

City Art Gallery is excited to be able to hopefully show a wider selection of small “gift sized” art which is always seen by the hundreds of guests attending the many functions such as wedding receptions held in the City Art Gallery space. We will create a new “Gift Gallery” presence on our website to show the work worldwide.

Send submissions to (ww@cityartonline.com). For further info visit (www.cityartonline.com).

HIGH NOON Saturdays at City Art in Columbia, SC

May 31, 2012

City Art in Columbia, SC, will be offering free arts related presentations lasting an hour or less on Saturdays at HIGH NOON in the main gallery. These events will begin on June 9, 2012, featuring HIGH NOON with the Editors of Jasper Magazine. Cindi Boiter will be reading short fiction from her new book Buttered Biscuits, Ed Madden reading poetry from Prodigal, Mike Miller reading short fiction from Lonesome Pines, and Kristine Hartvigsen reading poetry from To the Wren Nesting.

The next Saturday, June 16, 2012, Esther Melton will be working with  R&F oil pigment sticks to create one of her nature paintings in her new “Landscape Reflections” series.

Do you wonder how to make a good composition, to find the underlying structure in your subject? Do you struggle to keep your painting from turning into mud? On Saturday June 23, 2012, join Mary Bentz Gilkerson when she will be doing a demo painting in oil and giving you 7 steps to help you jumpstart your painting practice.

And to finish the month on June 30, 2012, award winning painter Anne Hightower-Patterson White will offer her expertise to artists during a walk-in critique.

In the coming weeks look for more demos and presentations from area artists and arts professionals and have lunch in the Vista while you are here.

For up to date information, “like” us on Facebook, join our e-mail list or visit our website at (www.cityartonline.com).

City Art is located in the Vista at 1224 Lincoln Street, Columbia, SC.

City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, Offers Fundraiser for the South Carolina Philharmonic – Jan. 13, 2011

January 9, 2011

City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, will present an preview of, Visual Sonata: An Ensemble of Images in Support of the SC Philharmonic, a sale and display of 30 framed images, a candid photography project documenting SCP musicians.

The South Carolina Philharmonic has teamed up with photographers Barry Wheeler, Heather Rae Bauer, Gordon Humphries and Brian Harmon to document the rehearsals and lives of SCP musicians.

The photography will be available, for purchase, with proceeds benefiting the SCP at its Jan. 15, 2011, “Beethoven & Blue Jeans” Masterworks concert, 7:30pm at the Koger Center for the Arts in Columbia.

For further information call City Art at 803/252-3613 or visit (www.cityartonline.com).

City Art Gallery and Fred McElveen in Columbia, SC, Offer Opportunity to Help Local Food Bank – Sept. 26, 2010

September 15, 2010

City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, will host a collaborative event (Sunday, Sept. 26, 2010, from 2-5pm featuring the sale of photography and collection of food and cash donations for Harvest Hope Food Bank (currently in desperate need of both).

Dr. Fred McElveen is an established Columbia-based physician with a specialty in dermatology, but he is also an award-winning photographer. Though largely self-taught, the artist has studied with Ansel Adams, Cole Weston, Phil Davis, and Alan Ross, among others. Working in black and white, color, and computer-assisted manipulation, McElveen builds upon established practices of American documentary photography and European fine art photography while inventing his own artistic voice.

The City Art sale includes a large variety of McElveen’s images of Columbia such as the Gervais Street Bridge, but his artistic vision transforms these familiar sights into classic and romantic icons of place. The sale will include streetscapes, landscapes, close-ups, and images the photographer captured on his travels. The City Art sale will also feature many computer-enhanced images by the photographer.

McElveen, known well for his work in black & white will have many color pieces also in a vast array of sizes and price points. All attendees will receive a ticket for their Harvest Hope Food Bank Donation that will entitle them to a 10% savings on the photography. In addition, all purchases will be accompanied by a framing coupon for savings of 50% on the molding price.

City Art Gallery is located at 1224 Lincoln St. in the historic Congaree Vista area in Columbia. Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday 10am until 6pm, until 5pm on Fridays and 11am to 3pm.

For more information contact Wendy Wells, Gallery Director, City Art, at 803/252-3613, e-mail (ww@cityartonline.com) or visit (www.cityartonline.com).


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