Monday, October 31, 2011

The Lives We Could Have Led
November 1 - November 26, 2011
Carol Kleinman, Michael Knight, Cheryl Medow

Opening Reception: Saturday, November 5, 2011, 5-8 PM
Artist Panel: Saturday, November 19, 2011, 2-3 PM

Carol Kleinman
Reflections of Hawaii

Upon first glance, Carol Kleinman's works might seem like photoshopped composite images. However, Kleinman takes a single picture of a single reflection, floating in the complexity of simplicity. Kleinman's images engage a careful kind of seeing, where unlike things interact and overlap in images simultaneously possible and impossible. Though they are real images without technological intervention, they only exist in reflections, and thus are in a way unreal. Kleinman invites viewers to join her in floating between exotic placeless places, somewhere between home base and utopian escape. Here Kleinman explores Hawaii, her origin and oasis, and a place where dreams fade in and out of reality with its surreal beauty and maternal warmth.

Michael Knight
As the Crow Flies

Moving from here to there, people and populations travel and disperse for myriad reasons, ccasionally or with regularity, legally or illegally, willing or under duress. Cultural patterns are reinforced or shifted by these journeys that range from daily commuting to the activity of nomads. Reflecting on this enduring human activity in his new show, As the Crow Flies, artist Michael Knight continues a multifaceted metaphorical exploration of the complexities of human migration. In this series of limited edition digiglyphs on canvas, Knight combines layered images of maps, hand drawn crows in migratory flight and calligraphic tracings that record growth, time and change. These images combine the uniqueness of a monoprint with the sophistication of the digital world, exposing our own, uncertain times. In Knight’s transitory world, nothing is taken for granted, and nothing remains the same.

Cheryl Medow
Wildest Dreams

In her upcoming exhibition Wildest Dreams, Cheryl Medow infuses her hyper-realistic images of wildlife with an acute, visceral energy.  From the jungles of Africa to the marshy thickets of the Malibu Lagoon, Medow seeks the textures of the landscape and its diverse creatures, saturating them with layers of color and imagery.  With every image we become attuned to the contours of the environment and the creatures within her magical dioramas.  

Medow is filled with a sense of belonging whether she is photographing nature in a nearby lagoon or in a far distant land.  Join Cheryl Medow in the journey through her wildest dreams.    

Monday, October 24, 2011

Carol Kleinman Interview

Carol Kleinman
Portal to Paradise, Hawaii 2011
single exposure digital image on canvas
60" x 30" Ed. of 5
Carol Kleinman's photographic works seem to float between exotic place-less places.

Are you still photographing window reflections?

I have been photographing reflections for almost 20 years. It all began in Russia...on a train from Moscow to St Petersburg. Looking at the reflections on the train windows, I saw the many layers of life flying by. There were the people in the train, the outside world and the cold steel of the dining car. They all collided in front of my eyes creating a collage of life. As an artist, I wanted to capture these complex moments of life and put them on canvas for others to experience. It took time to develop this work. Year after year I've found more mystery, depth and joy using reflections. I plan to continue to explore and expand this work for many years to come.

How do you decide where to go to photograph windows? What attracts you, or what elements are you hoping to find? Do you have a favorite places (or places) to go?

This series was taken in Hawaii - the place of my birth. Hawaii is a nurturing place of light, water, and trade winds. There is a uniqueness in the islands that is found nowhere else in the world. My home had a profound impact on who I am and is in every sense a part of me. With this series, I want to convey this remarkable place from my point of view through my "Reflections of Hawaii".

                  Carol Kleinman
                  Orchids, Glass, Water, Hawaii Reflection 2011
                  single exposure digital image on canvas
                   60" x 30" Ed. of 5
What technical decisions do you have to make – camera, lens, printing surfaces…?

Upon first glance the work might seem photoshopped composite images. They are not. Capturing a moment in time is one of the most important aspics of my work. I strive to accomplish this with one single exposure.

I work intuitively with a very good small, single lens camera which allows me to catch the serendipitous moment. It is similar to a treasure hunt. My work is all about the unexpected.

Printing on canvas adds texture to my work. It also blurs the line between painting and photography adding to the sense of mystery intrinsic in the reflections.

Carol Kleinman's exhibition opens November 1, 2011.

  Carol Kleinman at work.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Interview With Michael Knight

Michael Knight
Limited Edition Digiglyph, Ed. Of 8  
28” x 36”
 Michael Knight's digiglyphs on canvas continue his multifaceted metaphorical exploration of the complexities of human migration.

Can you teach somebody to be an artist or is it an innate ability?

As an art teacher of more than three decades experience, I believe that just about anyone can be taught to make art. In the same way that humans have developed the ability to communicate verbally, they have also learned to communicate on a visual level. In fact, we only have to look to a young child to see that they often scribbling out their impressions of the world around them with a carefree abandon long before they are able to speak (innate artistic ability). Just as there are guidelines that help to organize verbiage, thus clarifying our thinking, so too we use the elements and principles of design to organize visual compositions and to clarify our thinking. These guidelines of visual communication have remained constant through history and along with content, form the basis of art criticism. How to apply these guidelines and the manipulation of materials and techniques can be imparted to others (artistic teaching). However, I also believe that there are inborn personal traits such as desire, commitment, aptitude, initiative and passion that will make developing these artistic capabilities easier to master.

Have you participated in migration yourself? Is your perspective on migration born from experience and/or observation?

Wow! Mapping the course of my relocations would produce quite a circuitous route and has provided a personal perspective on the implications of human migration. Born in Oakland, CA, I soon ended up in the Bronx, NY after a layover in Southern Arizona. Greenwich, CT, Old Saybrook, CT, Mamaroneck, NY were all stops before I came to LA and the San Fernando Valley. As a youth I traversed “The Valley” calling perhaps 12 different locations home. Next was LA 90034 and now LA 90066. Finding my way to and from those locations and being immersed in the environments and cultures that I found there has shaped many of my views on this shared human experience. Observing and reflecting upon how these same activities affect the lives, thoughts, actions and behaviors of others is at the crux of my current process. 

Crows are a recurring element in your work. Why crows? Why not parrots or penguins?

Crows first appeared in my artwork during my graphite/tornado series about five years ago. I became aware of them while out walking my dogs in my Mar Vista neighborhood. I would see large groups of black birds flying South and East in the morning and North and West in the evening. As I walked, I mused about the metaphorical connections between the way these cunning survivors would travel to insinuate themselves into an area, and find a way to thrive there. I also noticed that their arrival was met with mixed sentiment. This then led me to find connections to human migrations and especially immigration. To me, these crows became the ideal symbol to use as I questioned these essential issues in my art.

Michael Knight
HYY 80
Limited Edition Digiglyph, Ed. Of 8
26” x 36”
How do the digital and handmade aspects of your work complement each other? How does each support the other?

I have been involved with printmaking for about fifteen years. Initially I explored transfer prints, photo etching and monoprinting. More recently I became interested in digital printmaking, and in the digiglyph, I have found the perfect blend of handmade and digital art making. Creating hand drawn monoprints became a major focus. Along the way, I experimented with digital art making as well, finding the ability to layer imagery fascinating and similar to that which is present in monoprinting. In my current work I begin with a hand drawn monoprints of crows using only black ink on white paper. That image is then scanned and added digitally to images of maps that establish location, destination and movement. I use my artistic training to guide the manipulation of compositional issues and color considerations viewed on a monitor.  Concentric rings that represent time, growth, travel and change are then added, both digitally and by hand, to an image that is outsourced to paper or canvas.

Where do you your find inspiration for your works?

Process is the core of my inspiration. My goal is to create images that question the constant evolution of societal pressures, cultural identities and definitions of self, tempered by intellectual control and emotional response. I encourage the viewer to examine the world beyond the art and beyond the frame. To that end, my artwork explores distinctions between the inherent and the refined, the organic and the geometric, the worldly and the spiritual, the male and the female, the cerebral and the impassioned. This contrasting nature of the universe, as I perceive it, is ever present.

What is your thought process while making an artwork? Or, Can you take us through the steps you go through when creating a new piece?

I am always taking photos of crows with the overarching migration theme lurking in the back of my mind. In the studio these two occurrences intersect as I create a monoprint drawing and gather the resources that will form the final composition. Next, images are scanned, and the digital fun begins. Although I start with a concrete plan, I also embrace, even seek, the unexpected discoveries I find while manipulating the numerous digital layers in the computer. I find combining new and age old technologies intellectually and physically satisfying. They seem to round out both sides of my Gemini personality and provide a yin/yang balance to my life. The finished prints are a bonus. 

Whom do you make art for?

I make art mostly for myself as a way of reconciling my ideas and understandings of the world around me with those of others. Rather than offering visual opinions, I prefer to pose questions to those who view my work. I would like them to share in my questioning of our world and its constructs. It is my way of saying, “Did you ever notice this?” and if so,  “What do you think about it?” 

Michael Knight
Photo by Danny Moloshok

Michael Knight's exhibition opens November 1, 2011.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Human-Nature Urban-Suburban New Exhibit at TAG Gallery
October 4 - October 29, 2011
Featuring Artists: Carole Garland, Diane Rudnick Mann, Della Rolle, Ellen Starr

Opening Reception: Saturday, October 15, 2011, 5-8 PM
Artist Panel: Saturday, October 22, 2011, 2-3 PM
An Afternoon with Wild Art and Wild Animals: Sunday, October 23, 3-5 pm

In LAyers, Carole Garland’s paintings give us an overview of Los Angeles, city of mirages. They capture both the transitory nature of the marine atmosphere and the permanence of the mountain topography. Fascinated with the natural geometry of the local environs, Garland paints urbanscapes of familiar sites overlooking Culver City, Mulholland, Pacific Palisades and Ocean Park.

Garland’s oil paintings display a city that rests amidst a complex environment. Pink stucco houses, crowded streets and towering palm trees starkly contrast the bold mountains and heavy fog that linger in the distance. The patches of paint which mimic Cezanne’s color block technique diffuse light as it shines through the marine layer shrouding the city.

Everyday Things Come Alive, Diane Rudnick Mann

Diane Rudnick Mann places everyday things in a limitless cosmos: cherries, peppermint candies and vegetables appear as if carved out of dark matter.  Pastels, usually reserved for soft-focus effects and blurry lines, are applied with meticulous intensity and vigor.  Edges of objects alternately cut through the black background leaving crystallized reflections or seep into nothingness, losing contrast as they are pushed out of view.

Stripped of time, place, and function, the minutiae of everyday life become the focus of our attention.  We are forced to look, to gaze intently at the usual, otherwise, as Mann describes, “you would walk by and never notice."

Animalia, Della Rolle

In Anamalia, Della Rolle highlights the odd yet prevalent parallels between human characteristics and animal behavior. Exposed to both wild and domestic animals that live in and around her home in Los Angeles, Della sees remarkable crossovers between her neighbors and her furry friends who live in her backyard. Amused by these similarities, Della captures both humor and beauty in the animals that she sculpts.

Through her bronze and terra cotta sculptures, she reveals the unique personalities of animals such as the Mule Ear Deer Fawn, Cougar Cub, Gray Fox Cub, and Brush Bunny. By associating human mannerisms to animals, the creatures do not only become entertaining but also familiar. Linking human and animal personalities together, Della is satirically commenting on the connectedness of the city, suburban neighborhoods and nearby nature. Whether it is Della’s unique lighthearted view of the world or the fact that humans and animals are related, Anamalia presents a playful view of our society, both two-legged and four-legged.

Vacation Memories, Ellen Starr

Ellen Starr transports us to primitive "vacationscapes". Her Rousseau-inspired foliage provides a glimpse into these untouched locales, like a postcard from an untouched land. From the sands of the Gulf Coast of Florida and the terrains of the Sierras to the shores of Hawaii, these acrylic on canvas paintings beckon a primitive serenity outside the domain of tourism or even humanity.

Starr’s landscapes channel peace within the wild, simplicity within the complexity of nature. The details of organic forms which have become expected of exotic utopias are given new life as Starr revels in the details of silhouettes and their purple shadows, of the crisscross of stems and branches. Through creating idealized replications of her personal memories, Starr creates visual souvenirs of the ultimate escape: a return to nature.

An Afternoon with Wild Art and Wild Animals Charity Event, Event and Silent Auction

The Nature of Wildworks is a nonprofit 501c3 Wildlife Care and Education Center in Topanga, Ca.  It provides lifetime care for over forty non-releasable wild animals that were either injured, orphaned or people’s illegal pets. Wildworks also provides programs to the public and works with the LA school district, working with each school's curriculum, to provide programs to educate and engender respect for wildlife and the environment. The ticket price is $40 per person. Wildworks is a volunteer based organization so the ticket price and the money from the silent auction are donations toward the continuing care of the animals at Wildworks. Sample animals in attendance: a serval, a red-tailed hawk, an owl, foxes, prairie dogs, and opossums. There will be a volunteer with every animal who is there to tell people about the animal and its story. Event is not open to children. October 23rd from 3:00 until 5:00 PM, with the silent auction closing at 4:45 PM. Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance at: