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Visual Arts

Visual Arts


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  string(5535) "Don't let the spiky hair, the colorful tunics and the quirky eyewear fool you. Far from the capricious free spirits who float above the grimy quotidian world of commercial blood, sweat and tears, artists and art folk are a beleaguered, worry-plagued community.</
Worry about money is par for the course in the arts, where it is often bureaucrats and corporate titans who seem to hold the purse strings when it comes to funding or not funding. Every day is a struggle. There's never enough.</
But things appear to be taking a turn for the better. With so many studies suddenly recognizing that without exposure to the arts, students don't get into elite colleges, and that without a vibrant arts scene, a city's mojo suffers, the nonarts community is beginning to come around. Culture isn't just life-affirming, mind-expanding and ennobling; it can also get Brittany into Harvard and entice smart, ambitious people to move to your city. Ca-ching.</
It is undeniable that with all the real and anticipated growth in the city with the Beltline and development of the Peachtree Corridor, the expansion of the High Museum and the forthcoming Santiago Calatrava-designed Atlanta Symphony Center, Atlanta has realized that, along with economic growth, it is necessary to grow the arts or risk becoming a podunk megamall. Because, let's be honest, most towns already have a Bed Bath & Beyond and a Wal-Mart, so why come to ours?</
The need for events and institutions to bring people to Atlanta is something many Atlantans realized a long time ago when trying to lure friends from New York, Los Angeles or even Austin, Texas, to visit: The refrain inevitably was, "Whaddya got?" And the answer was not always great.</
So maybe it's the promise of new beginnings that spring brings, but there have been some positive signs lately that Atlanta's art scene is seeing its fortunes increase with a rash of grants, awards and giving.</
On March 21, Mayor Shirley Franklin convened a press conference to announce her Arts and Culture Funding Task Force's recommended formation of a Cultural Investment Fund that would award $10 million annually to fund the arts in the city. The money would most likely come from a percentage of a new or existing city tax. The city currently spends about $4 per citizen annually on the arts, and that figure would jump to $21.</
Art Papers Editor in Chief Sylvie Fortin was at the press conference and is optimistic about both the city's recent arts growth and the mayor's commitment to that growth.</
"I have complete faith in her," she says of Franklin.</
The mayor didn't hesitate from one press conference attendee's question about implementing the fund: "When someone said, 'Who's going to do this?' she said, 'I will!'"</
Evidence of change in Atlanta's orientation in thinking about the arts comes in smaller increments, too. After its 2006 exhibition was canceled when anticipated Fulton County funding fell through, the ambitious Art in Freedom Park project may live again. On March 19, Atlanta City Council passed a resolution acknowledging Freedom Park as an Atlanta Public Art Park, "for the purpose of introducing the arts to the citizens of the city of Atlanta."</
AiFP founder Evan Levy is optimistic about "this major acknowledgment from the political structure that Atlanta has the capacity to rethink opportunities for cultural engagement."</
And it's not only the beneficence of government that will make the city's art scene flourish.</
Recently stepping up to the plate in that regard is the Charles Loridans Foundation, already an arts supporter in the city, which announced Feb. 26 the award of $15,000 and $10,000 grants to seven Atlanta artists.</
"This is the first time we have given awards to individual artists," says Loridans Chairman Robert G. Edge. The group singled out both established and emerging artists for awards in a welcome gesture of encouraging new voices without forgetting the valuable contributions of pioneers.</
Those awards come on top of the $200,000 the Loridans Foundation gave the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia to support a Working Artists Program benefiting three area artists: Don Cooper, Danielle Roney and Larry Walker.</
It is also heartening to see smaller organizations doing their part to support the city's cultural fabric. For the past three years, the Atlanta Gallery Association has hosted a kind of "hurrah for us" audience-building series of events and openings. But this year, it's doing something different. At this spring's ATLart07 event (May 1-31), the AGA will donate some of its proceeds to Atlanta's public high school art programs.</
The AGA's managing director, Lydia Ivanditti, says these programs "were an easy choice because their funds for art programs have been dramatically reduced and because it will cut across all lines of race, color, creed, etc. Everyone benefits."</
Both the AGA and the Loridans Foundation commitment of funds to the city's schools and artists recognize a lack in our city's arts funding and make a bold effort to do something about it, in however small a way. It would be wonderful to see more of Atlanta's corporations and institutions take the same initiative.</
That's because the arts may make good business sense and help kids get into better colleges. But the arts also have an inherent value worth noting. Without a growing arts scene, a city lacks something ephemeral that money can't buy: a soul.





































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Worry about money is par for the course in the arts, where it is often bureaucrats and corporate titans who seem to hold the purse strings when it comes to funding or not funding. Every day is a struggle. There's never enough.</
But things appear to be taking a turn for the better. With so many studies suddenly recognizing that without exposure to the arts, students don't get into elite colleges, and that without a vibrant arts scene, a city's mojo suffers, the nonarts community is beginning to come around. Culture isn't just life-affirming, mind-expanding and ennobling; it can also get Brittany into Harvard and entice smart, ambitious people to move to your city. Ca-ching.</
It is undeniable that with all the real and anticipated growth in the city with the Beltline and development of the Peachtree Corridor, the expansion of the High Museum and the forthcoming Santiago Calatrava-designed Atlanta Symphony Center, Atlanta has realized that, along with economic growth, it is necessary to grow the arts or risk becoming a podunk megamall. Because, let's be honest, most towns already have a Bed Bath & Beyond and a Wal-Mart, so why come to ours?</
The need for events and institutions to bring people to Atlanta is something many Atlantans realized a long time ago when trying to lure friends from New York, Los Angeles or even Austin, Texas, to visit: The refrain inevitably was, "Whaddya got?" And the answer was not always great.</
So maybe it's the promise of new beginnings that spring brings, but there have been some positive signs lately that Atlanta's art scene is seeing its fortunes increase with a rash of grants, awards and giving.</
On March 21, Mayor Shirley Franklin convened a press conference to announce her Arts and Culture Funding Task Force's recommended formation of a Cultural Investment Fund that would award $10 million annually to fund the arts in the city. The money would most likely come from a percentage of a new or existing city tax. The city currently spends about $4 per citizen annually on the arts, and that figure would jump to $21.</
Art Papers Editor in Chief Sylvie Fortin was at the press conference and is optimistic about both the city's recent arts growth and the mayor's commitment to that growth.</
"I have complete faith in her," she says of Franklin.</
The mayor didn't hesitate from one press conference attendee's question about implementing the fund: "When someone said, 'Who's going to do this?' she said, 'I will!'"</
Evidence of change in Atlanta's orientation in thinking about the arts comes in smaller increments, too. After its 2006 exhibition was canceled when anticipated Fulton County funding fell through, the ambitious Art in Freedom Park project may live again. On March 19, Atlanta City Council passed a resolution acknowledging Freedom Park as an Atlanta Public Art Park, "for the purpose of introducing the arts to the citizens of the city of Atlanta."</
AiFP founder Evan Levy is optimistic about "this major acknowledgment from the political structure that Atlanta has the capacity to rethink opportunities for cultural engagement."</
And it's not only the beneficence of government that will make the city's art scene flourish.</
Recently stepping up to the plate in that regard is the Charles Loridans Foundation, already an arts supporter in the city, which announced Feb. 26 the award of $15,000 and $10,000 grants to seven Atlanta artists.</
"This is the first time we have given awards to individual artists," says Loridans Chairman Robert G. Edge. The group singled out both established and emerging artists for awards in a welcome gesture of encouraging new voices without forgetting the valuable contributions of pioneers.</
Those awards come on top of the $200,000 the Loridans Foundation gave the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia to support a Working Artists Program benefiting three area artists: Don Cooper, Danielle Roney and Larry Walker.</
It is also heartening to see smaller organizations doing their part to support the city's cultural fabric. For the past three years, the Atlanta Gallery Association has hosted a kind of "hurrah for us" audience-building series of events and openings. But this year, it's doing something different. At this spring's ATLart07 event (May 1-31), the AGA will donate some of its proceeds to Atlanta's public high school art programs.</
The AGA's managing director, Lydia Ivanditti, says these programs "were an easy choice because their funds for art programs have been dramatically reduced and because it will cut across all lines of race, color, creed, etc. Everyone benefits."</
Both the AGA and the Loridans Foundation commitment of funds to the city's schools and artists recognize a lack in our city's arts funding and make a bold effort to do something about it, in however small a way. It would be wonderful to see more of Atlanta's corporations and institutions take the same initiative.</
That's because the arts may make good business sense and help kids get into better colleges. But the arts also have an inherent value worth noting. Without a growing arts scene, a city lacks something ephemeral that money can't buy: a soul.





































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Article

Wednesday March 28, 2007 12:04 am EDT
Atlanta might be ready to step up and support the arts | more...
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  ["title"]=>
  string(33) "Between the Lines: Youth movement"
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  string(51) "At play with artists Zach Johnsen and Charlie Owens"
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  string(51) "At play with artists Zach Johnsen and Charlie Owens"
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  string(4380) "Brooklyn artist Zach Johnsen and Atlanta's Charlie Owens are artists with one foot firmly planted in the lowbrow traditions of comix, anime and urban art and another tentatively tiptoeing into the gallery. The latter world often demands more: more focus, more content, something to distinguish the artist from all the countless aspirants doodling bubble-letter tags on walls and sneakers. Foundation One's director, Ivan Annikov, wants to bring a West Coast, Juxtapoz vibe to Atlanta, and it's a worthy goal for a city that could use more ear-to-the-street, youth-oriented galleries to balance out the established traditional and contemporary spaces.

??
Foundation's latest, Between the Lines, therefore is a bit of a disappointment for an art space whose last show, of local artists John Tindel and Michi, was a great, pulled-together and visually compelling installation of that much-exhibited artist team's work. You can't swing a cat in Atlanta without hitting either Tindel or Michi, but La Calaveras Pop showed they still had some surprises in store and could bring a polish to their artistic collaborations that hasn't always been on display.

??
One of Between the Lines' biggest problems is an imbalance in the artists' abilities and sensibility, with Johnsen's technique and ideas looking far more developed and thoughtful next to Owens.

??
Johnsen's work seems very much a product of the artist's New York reality and city life's claustrophobia. His work can be incredibly misanthropic, though that misanthropy can range from disgust at humanity's moral failings to a sadder, defeated anguish. He paints, draws and has created an installation piece in wood for the show, but it doesn't take long to figure out that Johnsen's greatest interest and skill lies in his watercolor and pen-and-ink drawings.

??
The most interesting piece is a collage of sketches and watercolor drawings running along a low wall in the gallery like some grocery corkboard filled with pushpin fliers and announcements. It is here you can see the range of Johnsen's abilities, but also some of the inconsistencies in his work. Johnsen, like Owens, is drawn to a cartoony, graphic array of forms – creatures shaped like wads of chewed gum with lasciviously grinning candy-corn teeth, deformed hunchbacks, bats with human hands – that crop up throughout the show like some personal variety show of recurring characters.

??
There is a tension in the work between the immaturity of many of those Star Wars cantina-style forms and the maturity of Johnsen's social commentary. His humans and animals suffer in a world plagued by greed, toil and misery signified by the artist's trope of his creatures perpetually lugging an enormous bundle of branches. But you get the sense that some of Johnsen's more cartoony shapes, with their one-note monstrosity, are holding him back, catching him up in a gimmicky expression of worldly vice and squalor. It's a shame, when other pieces so nicely synthesize the artist's interest in socially engaged subject matter and Gothic, imagination-tweaked realism. On Johnsen's wall of pushpin images, there are several such arresting images, such as one untitled work where a little girl with her back to us is being watched by two unseen, shadowy forms. "Liberation Army" is a fluid, kinetic drawing of an animal army of cats and hyenas, bats and warthogs united in a parade of self-determination that shows the fragility mixed with social critique that gives Johnsen's better work its power.

??
Owens is a more problematic case, an artist so entrenched in his own graphic obsessions that he can feel like the 2007, skate-culture answer to the babe-obsessed Patrick Nagel. Owens' primary obsessions are street-savvy vixens, many executed on skateboard decks with come-hither almond eyes, bared navels, tattoos and skull belt buckles. In contrast, his big-eyed, stout, Sunday-funnies-style men are lumpy losers.

??
The only time Owens seems to break away from his formulaic kit bag and inject anything close to humor or nuttiness into his work is when his loser guys take on the big-eyed torment of Margaret Keane kiddies, prisoners and drunks in striped pajamas weeping fat, sad tears. If Johnsen could stand to take some of the animated forms out of his work, Owens could stand to get something wittier and more self-aware into his mix of sex and violence."
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  string(4400) "Brooklyn artist Zach Johnsen and Atlanta's Charlie Owens are artists with one foot firmly planted in the lowbrow traditions of comix, anime and urban art and another tentatively tiptoeing into the gallery. The latter world often demands more: more focus, more content, something to distinguish the artist from all the countless aspirants doodling bubble-letter tags on walls and sneakers. Foundation One's director, Ivan Annikov, wants to bring a West Coast, ''Juxtapoz'' vibe to Atlanta, and it's a worthy goal for a city that could use more ear-to-the-street, youth-oriented galleries to balance out the established traditional and contemporary spaces.

??
Foundation's latest, ''Between the Lines,'' therefore is a bit of a disappointment for an art space whose last show, of local artists John Tindel and Michi, was a great, pulled-together and visually compelling installation of that much-exhibited artist team's work. You can't swing a cat in Atlanta without hitting either Tindel or Michi, but ''La Calaveras Pop'' showed they still had some surprises in store and could bring a polish to their artistic collaborations that hasn't always been on display.

??
One of ''Between the Lines''' biggest problems is an imbalance in the artists' abilities and sensibility, with Johnsen's technique and ideas looking far more developed and thoughtful next to Owens.

??
Johnsen's work seems very much a product of the artist's New York reality and city life's claustrophobia. His work can be incredibly misanthropic, though that misanthropy can range from disgust at humanity's moral failings to a sadder, defeated anguish. He paints, draws and has created an installation piece in wood for the show, but it doesn't take long to figure out that Johnsen's greatest interest and skill lies in his watercolor and pen-and-ink drawings.

??
The most interesting piece is a collage of sketches and watercolor drawings running along a low wall in the gallery like some grocery corkboard filled with pushpin fliers and announcements. It is here you can see the range of Johnsen's abilities, but also some of the inconsistencies in his work. Johnsen, like Owens, is drawn to a cartoony, graphic array of forms – creatures shaped like wads of chewed gum with lasciviously grinning candy-corn teeth, deformed hunchbacks, bats with human hands – that crop up throughout the show like some personal variety show of recurring characters.

??
There is a tension in the work between the immaturity of many of those ''Star Wars'' cantina-style forms and the maturity of Johnsen's social commentary. His humans and animals suffer in a world plagued by greed, toil and misery signified by the artist's trope of his creatures perpetually lugging an enormous bundle of branches. But you get the sense that some of Johnsen's more cartoony shapes, with their one-note monstrosity, are holding him back, catching him up in a gimmicky expression of worldly vice and squalor. It's a shame, when other pieces so nicely synthesize the artist's interest in socially engaged subject matter and Gothic, imagination-tweaked realism. On Johnsen's wall of pushpin images, there are several such arresting images, such as one untitled work where a little girl with her back to us is being watched by two unseen, shadowy forms. "Liberation Army" is a fluid, kinetic drawing of an animal army of cats and hyenas, bats and warthogs united in a parade of self-determination that shows the fragility mixed with social critique that gives Johnsen's better work its power.

??
Owens is a more problematic case, an artist so entrenched in his own graphic obsessions that he can feel like the 2007, skate-culture answer to the babe-obsessed Patrick Nagel. Owens' primary obsessions are street-savvy vixens, many executed on skateboard decks with come-hither almond eyes, bared navels, tattoos and skull belt buckles. In contrast, his big-eyed, stout, Sunday-funnies-style men are lumpy losers.

??
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  string(4640) "    At play with artists Zach Johnsen and Charlie Owens   2007-03-21T04:04:00+00:00 Between the Lines: Youth movement   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-03-21T04:04:00+00:00  Brooklyn artist Zach Johnsen and Atlanta's Charlie Owens are artists with one foot firmly planted in the lowbrow traditions of comix, anime and urban art and another tentatively tiptoeing into the gallery. The latter world often demands more: more focus, more content, something to distinguish the artist from all the countless aspirants doodling bubble-letter tags on walls and sneakers. Foundation One's director, Ivan Annikov, wants to bring a West Coast, Juxtapoz vibe to Atlanta, and it's a worthy goal for a city that could use more ear-to-the-street, youth-oriented galleries to balance out the established traditional and contemporary spaces.

??
Foundation's latest, Between the Lines, therefore is a bit of a disappointment for an art space whose last show, of local artists John Tindel and Michi, was a great, pulled-together and visually compelling installation of that much-exhibited artist team's work. You can't swing a cat in Atlanta without hitting either Tindel or Michi, but La Calaveras Pop showed they still had some surprises in store and could bring a polish to their artistic collaborations that hasn't always been on display.

??
One of Between the Lines' biggest problems is an imbalance in the artists' abilities and sensibility, with Johnsen's technique and ideas looking far more developed and thoughtful next to Owens.

??
Johnsen's work seems very much a product of the artist's New York reality and city life's claustrophobia. His work can be incredibly misanthropic, though that misanthropy can range from disgust at humanity's moral failings to a sadder, defeated anguish. He paints, draws and has created an installation piece in wood for the show, but it doesn't take long to figure out that Johnsen's greatest interest and skill lies in his watercolor and pen-and-ink drawings.

??
The most interesting piece is a collage of sketches and watercolor drawings running along a low wall in the gallery like some grocery corkboard filled with pushpin fliers and announcements. It is here you can see the range of Johnsen's abilities, but also some of the inconsistencies in his work. Johnsen, like Owens, is drawn to a cartoony, graphic array of forms – creatures shaped like wads of chewed gum with lasciviously grinning candy-corn teeth, deformed hunchbacks, bats with human hands – that crop up throughout the show like some personal variety show of recurring characters.

??
There is a tension in the work between the immaturity of many of those Star Wars cantina-style forms and the maturity of Johnsen's social commentary. His humans and animals suffer in a world plagued by greed, toil and misery signified by the artist's trope of his creatures perpetually lugging an enormous bundle of branches. But you get the sense that some of Johnsen's more cartoony shapes, with their one-note monstrosity, are holding him back, catching him up in a gimmicky expression of worldly vice and squalor. It's a shame, when other pieces so nicely synthesize the artist's interest in socially engaged subject matter and Gothic, imagination-tweaked realism. On Johnsen's wall of pushpin images, there are several such arresting images, such as one untitled work where a little girl with her back to us is being watched by two unseen, shadowy forms. "Liberation Army" is a fluid, kinetic drawing of an animal army of cats and hyenas, bats and warthogs united in a parade of self-determination that shows the fragility mixed with social critique that gives Johnsen's better work its power.

??
Owens is a more problematic case, an artist so entrenched in his own graphic obsessions that he can feel like the 2007, skate-culture answer to the babe-obsessed Patrick Nagel. Owens' primary obsessions are street-savvy vixens, many executed on skateboard decks with come-hither almond eyes, bared navels, tattoos and skull belt buckles. In contrast, his big-eyed, stout, Sunday-funnies-style men are lumpy losers.

??
The only time Owens seems to break away from his formulaic kit bag and inject anything close to humor or nuttiness into his work is when his loser guys take on the big-eyed torment of Margaret Keane kiddies, prisoners and drunks in striped pajamas weeping fat, sad tears. If Johnsen could stand to take some of the animated forms out of his work, Owens could stand to get something wittier and more self-aware into his mix of sex and violence.             13024088 1266453                          Between the Lines: Youth movement "
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Wednesday March 21, 2007 12:04 am EDT
At play with artists Zach Johnsen and Charlie Owens | more...
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  string(2704) "Laura Griffin describes her photographs as "a poem made up of images," and the comparison turns out to be an apt one easily extended to the other four women photographers in Here and Now at Composition Gallery.

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The Belgian lace to fiction's tightly woven, workhorse quilt, poetry creates evocative impressions and feelings through a minimalist form. All five of these photographers create work that could be described as poetic: subtle, evocative, suggesting but never stating outright what the photographer is thinking.

??
The work in Here and Now, while sharing a certain poetic ambiguity, rambles and roams in terms of style and content. Some of the photographers relish formal issues and the tradition of black-and-white nature photography typified by Ansel Adams. Diane Kirkland creates Gothic portraits of the Georgia landscape as haunted and romantic as any on the British moors, though the imprecision of her digital printing process can undercut the beauty of her forms.

??
Other photographers are more driven by a combination of formal concerns and content, as with Robin Perry Dana's photographs of the effects of kaolin mining on the central Georgia landscape whose most shocking dimension is the Crayola box range of the Earth's color palette.

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Griffin is the sly comedian of the bunch and the one who delivers the best synthesis of content and form. Her work has the wry observational quality of indie cinema typified by "Wedding," in which a well-dressed man – the groom, one imagines – sits on the edge of a hotel-room bed, his hands knit in an expression of anticipation or anxiety.

??
Exploring similar material of travel, Mary Anne Mitchell and Jeani Elbaum offer dramatically different perspectives on their wanderings. In her hazy, shimmering black-and-white images, Mitchell captures some of the fleeting, hard-to-hold glamour of New York City. Elbaum's work is less enchanted, more wary. Travel can entice but it can also alienate, and Elbaum's London images are certainly in the latter camp: shadowy figures loom overhead in underground tunnels, busy pedestrians ignore subway buskers, men skitter around the frantic streets.

??
The work in Here and Now, juried by Atlanta Celebrates Photography co-founder Susan Todd-Raque, feels in every case tentative and exploratory. Interesting ideas crop up, a gem or two emerge, caps are tipped to photography's pioneers. And with time, you imagine, these five women will better find their voice and refine their messages.

??
Here and Now: Our First Anniversary Show. Through April 29. Fri., 3-7 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., noon-6 p.m. Composition Gallery, 1388 McLendon Ave. 678-982-9764. www.compositiongallery.com."
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  string(2757) "Laura Griffin describes her photographs as "a poem made up of images," and the comparison turns out to be an apt one easily extended to the other four women photographers in ''Here and Now'' at Composition Gallery.

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The Belgian lace to fiction's tightly woven, workhorse quilt, poetry creates evocative impressions and feelings through a minimalist form. All five of these photographers create work that could be described as poetic: subtle, evocative, suggesting but never stating outright what the photographer is thinking.

??
The work in ''Here and Now'', while sharing a certain poetic ambiguity, rambles and roams in terms of style and content. Some of the photographers relish formal issues and the tradition of black-and-white nature photography typified by Ansel Adams. Diane Kirkland creates Gothic portraits of the Georgia landscape as haunted and romantic as any on the British moors, though the imprecision of her digital printing process can undercut the beauty of her forms.

??
Other photographers are more driven by a combination of formal concerns and content, as with Robin Perry Dana's photographs of the effects of kaolin mining on the central Georgia landscape whose most shocking dimension is the Crayola box range of the Earth's color palette.

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Griffin is the sly comedian of the bunch and the one who delivers the best synthesis of content and form. Her work has the wry observational quality of indie cinema typified by "Wedding," in which a well-dressed man – the groom, one imagines – sits on the edge of a hotel-room bed, his hands knit in an expression of anticipation or anxiety.

??
Exploring similar material of travel, Mary Anne Mitchell and Jeani Elbaum offer dramatically different perspectives on their wanderings. In her hazy, shimmering black-and-white images, Mitchell captures some of the fleeting, hard-to-hold glamour of New York City. Elbaum's work is less enchanted, more wary. Travel can entice but it can also alienate, and Elbaum's London images are certainly in the latter camp: shadowy figures loom overhead in underground tunnels, busy pedestrians ignore subway buskers, men skitter around the frantic streets.

??
The work in ''Here and Now'', juried by Atlanta Celebrates Photography co-founder Susan Todd-Raque, feels in every case tentative and exploratory. Interesting ideas crop up, a gem or two emerge, caps are tipped to photography's pioneers. And with time, you imagine, these five women will better find their voice and refine their messages.

??
Here and Now: Our First Anniversary Show. ''Through April 29. Fri., 3-7 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., noon-6 p.m. Composition Gallery, 1388 McLendon Ave. 678-982-9764. [http://www.compositiongallery.com/|www.compositiongallery.com].''"
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??
The Belgian lace to fiction's tightly woven, workhorse quilt, poetry creates evocative impressions and feelings through a minimalist form. All five of these photographers create work that could be described as poetic: subtle, evocative, suggesting but never stating outright what the photographer is thinking.

??
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??
Other photographers are more driven by a combination of formal concerns and content, as with Robin Perry Dana's photographs of the effects of kaolin mining on the central Georgia landscape whose most shocking dimension is the Crayola box range of the Earth's color palette.

??
Griffin is the sly comedian of the bunch and the one who delivers the best synthesis of content and form. Her work has the wry observational quality of indie cinema typified by "Wedding," in which a well-dressed man – the groom, one imagines – sits on the edge of a hotel-room bed, his hands knit in an expression of anticipation or anxiety.

??
Exploring similar material of travel, Mary Anne Mitchell and Jeani Elbaum offer dramatically different perspectives on their wanderings. In her hazy, shimmering black-and-white images, Mitchell captures some of the fleeting, hard-to-hold glamour of New York City. Elbaum's work is less enchanted, more wary. Travel can entice but it can also alienate, and Elbaum's London images are certainly in the latter camp: shadowy figures loom overhead in underground tunnels, busy pedestrians ignore subway buskers, men skitter around the frantic streets.

??
The work in Here and Now, juried by Atlanta Celebrates Photography co-founder Susan Todd-Raque, feels in every case tentative and exploratory. Interesting ideas crop up, a gem or two emerge, caps are tipped to photography's pioneers. And with time, you imagine, these five women will better find their voice and refine their messages.

??
Here and Now: Our First Anniversary Show. Through April 29. Fri., 3-7 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., noon-6 p.m. Composition Gallery, 1388 McLendon Ave. 678-982-9764. www.compositiongallery.com.             13024009 1266257                          Here and Now: Poetic license "
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Wednesday March 14, 2007 12:04 am EDT
Composite Gallery photography show reaches for the evocative | more...

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  string(2423) "Like advertisements for a place you might not want to visit, Jody Fausett's photographs sizzle with inchoate menace. Fragility and a whiff of violence collide in a body of work centered on Fausett's kin and the vacant-eyed critters who attest to the family's favorite avocation of taxidermy.

??
In "Jimmy," stuffed and startled-looking bobcats, fawns and foxes pose with a woman and fudge the line between the living and the dead. The human tendency to tame, trap and spoil the wild is evident in a fat, black spider trapped in a Tupperware container, or a mounted deer head unceremoniously dumped on a living-room floor.

??
Fausett's settings in the White Space show Smoke from Another Fire would do David Lynch proud with their collisions of death and domesticity rendered in grubby earth tones, in rooms ornamented with Holly Hobbie switch plates and the Home Shopping Network elegance of cut-glass chandeliers. This domestic sphere becomes a kind of stage set for the photographer's potent psychodramas. Dramatic juxtapositions of shag rugs and dead things unfold before thick curtains in Dijon shades. In a cluttered bathroom, an upside-down, illuminated makeup mirror glows with an incandescent beckoning, like a portal to another dimension.

??
In "Broken Window," a bobcat is wedged in a vulnerable posture into the crook of a velveteen chair and hunkers down against some unseen threat. This wild animal doesn't set your teeth on edge as much as the quietly menacing domestic scene that surrounds it: from the shattered sliding glass door behind it to the table saw resting like a cobra on the patio outside.

??
This Atlanta-based photographer, whose fashion work for magazines like Time Out has undoubtedly influenced his aesthetic, includes enough dramatic lighting and tantalizing props to entice the eye. A pair of bobcats pose in Fausett's vacant, eerily low-lit living rooms, throwing off the attitude of teenage models. Mixed with those visually intoxicating details is another repulsive, ambiguous, death-stalked layer.

??
In these scenes of otherworldly innocents lost in a dangerous, domestic world, Fausett has found a metaphor for any creature who finds him or herself feeling like an alien trapped in the smothering bosom of home.

??
Smoke from Another Fire: Jody Fausett Photographs. Through March 31. Wed.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. White Space, 814 Edgewood Ave. 404-688-1892. www.whitespace814.com."
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In "Jimmy," stuffed and startled-looking bobcats, fawns and foxes pose with a woman and fudge the line between the living and the dead. The human tendency to tame, trap and spoil the wild is evident in a fat, black spider trapped in a Tupperware container, or a mounted deer head unceremoniously dumped on a living-room floor.

??
Fausett's settings in the [www.whitespace814.com|White Space] show ''Smoke from Another Fire'' would do David Lynch proud with their collisions of death and domesticity rendered in grubby earth tones, in rooms ornamented with Holly Hobbie switch plates and the Home Shopping Network elegance of cut-glass chandeliers. This domestic sphere becomes a kind of stage set for the photographer's potent psychodramas. Dramatic juxtapositions of shag rugs and dead things unfold before thick curtains in Dijon shades. In a cluttered bathroom, an upside-down, illuminated makeup mirror glows with an incandescent beckoning, like a portal to another dimension.

??
In "Broken Window," a bobcat is wedged in a vulnerable posture into the crook of a velveteen chair and hunkers down against some unseen threat. This wild animal doesn't set your teeth on edge as much as the quietly menacing domestic scene that surrounds it: from the shattered sliding glass door behind it to the table saw resting like a cobra on the patio outside.

??
This Atlanta-based photographer, whose fashion work for magazines like ''Time Out'' has undoubtedly influenced his aesthetic, includes enough dramatic lighting and tantalizing props to entice the eye. A pair of bobcats pose in Fausett's vacant, eerily low-lit living rooms, throwing off the attitude of teenage models. Mixed with those visually intoxicating details is another repulsive, ambiguous, death-stalked layer.

??
In these scenes of otherworldly innocents lost in a dangerous, domestic world, Fausett has found a metaphor for any creature who finds him or herself feeling like an alien trapped in the smothering bosom of home.

??
Smoke from Another Fire: Jody Fausett Photographs. ''Through March 31. Wed.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. White Space, 814 Edgewood Ave. 404-688-1892. [http://www.whitespace814.com/|www.whitespace814.com].''"
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  string(2662) "       2007-03-07T05:04:00+00:00 Home bodies: Jody Fausett at White Space Gallery   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-03-07T05:04:00+00:00  Like advertisements for a place you might not want to visit, Jody Fausett's photographs sizzle with inchoate menace. Fragility and a whiff of violence collide in a body of work centered on Fausett's kin and the vacant-eyed critters who attest to the family's favorite avocation of taxidermy.

??
In "Jimmy," stuffed and startled-looking bobcats, fawns and foxes pose with a woman and fudge the line between the living and the dead. The human tendency to tame, trap and spoil the wild is evident in a fat, black spider trapped in a Tupperware container, or a mounted deer head unceremoniously dumped on a living-room floor.

??
Fausett's settings in the White Space show Smoke from Another Fire would do David Lynch proud with their collisions of death and domesticity rendered in grubby earth tones, in rooms ornamented with Holly Hobbie switch plates and the Home Shopping Network elegance of cut-glass chandeliers. This domestic sphere becomes a kind of stage set for the photographer's potent psychodramas. Dramatic juxtapositions of shag rugs and dead things unfold before thick curtains in Dijon shades. In a cluttered bathroom, an upside-down, illuminated makeup mirror glows with an incandescent beckoning, like a portal to another dimension.

??
In "Broken Window," a bobcat is wedged in a vulnerable posture into the crook of a velveteen chair and hunkers down against some unseen threat. This wild animal doesn't set your teeth on edge as much as the quietly menacing domestic scene that surrounds it: from the shattered sliding glass door behind it to the table saw resting like a cobra on the patio outside.

??
This Atlanta-based photographer, whose fashion work for magazines like Time Out has undoubtedly influenced his aesthetic, includes enough dramatic lighting and tantalizing props to entice the eye. A pair of bobcats pose in Fausett's vacant, eerily low-lit living rooms, throwing off the attitude of teenage models. Mixed with those visually intoxicating details is another repulsive, ambiguous, death-stalked layer.

??
In these scenes of otherworldly innocents lost in a dangerous, domestic world, Fausett has found a metaphor for any creature who finds him or herself feeling like an alien trapped in the smothering bosom of home.

??
Smoke from Another Fire: Jody Fausett Photographs. Through March 31. Wed.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. White Space, 814 Edgewood Ave. 404-688-1892. www.whitespace814.com.             13023966 1266156                          Home bodies: Jody Fausett at White Space Gallery "
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Wednesday March 7, 2007 12:04 am EST

Like advertisements for a place you might not want to visit, Jody Fausett's photographs sizzle with inchoate menace. Fragility and a whiff of violence collide in a body of work centered on Fausett's kin and the vacant-eyed critters who attest to the family's favorite avocation of taxidermy.

??
In "Jimmy," stuffed and startled-looking bobcats, fawns and foxes pose with a woman and fudge the...

| more...
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  string(2379) "Who doesn't like reptiles? Snakes can swallow prey larger than their own heads. There is a lizard from South America called the green basilisk that can run on water like Jesus in a hurry.

??
If you want facts on reptiles, all you need to do is ask any boy between the ages of 5 and 15. Profoundly aware of the inherent awesomeness of reptiles, they are obsessed, knowledgeable and will tell you anything you need to know.

??
But if you crave the nose-pressed-to-glass intimate company of the scaled and web-toed, only Fernbank Museum of Natural History's Lizards & Snakes: Alive! will satisfy. A blockbuster museum show for kids not quite ready for Egon Schiele, Lizards & Snakes originated at New York's American Museum of Natural History. And like a movie aimed at grown-ups called Sex & Violence, Lizards & Snakes offers no ambiguity about the kinds of thrills it is offering.

??
Along with specimens from the reptile family far and wide — the yellow spotted monitor and the red spitting cobra, emerald tree boas and Burmese pythons — there are the kind of interactive features that contemporary museum audiences seem to require. You can press a button and hear the distinctive cry of the crested gecko. In a frank acknowledgment that technology is always the better voyeuristic tool than actual proximity, there are cameras placed in a glass case filled with exotic geckos — including the leaf-tail gecko, whose leechy, flattened body makes it look like something you'd peel off the bottom of your shoe. Visitors can zoom the camera in on the lizards inside that appear deeply unaware they are under constant surveillance.

??
But the coolest game was so awesome that kids were willingly abandoning their glass-fogging positions at the display cases to interact virtually. The video game allows them to assume the snake's point of view as they slither through a desert landscape looking for tasty vermin. "Goal: Eat a Rat" makes the mission crystal clear. If they hit the pounce button at the right time, the snake devours a croissant-sized rat. Grown-ups can have their reality TV — it doesn't get any realer than this.

??
Lizards & Snakes: Alive! Through Aug. 12. $11-$13 general admission, free for members. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., noon-5 p.m. Fernbank Museum of Natural History, 767 Clifton Road. 404-929-6300. www.fernbankmuseum.org."
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??
But if you crave the nose-pressed-to-glass intimate company of the scaled and web-toed, only Fernbank Museum of Natural History's ''Lizards & Snakes: Alive!'' will satisfy. A blockbuster museum show for kids not quite ready for Egon Schiele, ''Lizards & Snakes'' originated at New York's American Museum of Natural History. And like a movie aimed at grown-ups called ''Sex & Violence'', ''Lizards & Snakes'' offers no ambiguity about the kinds of thrills it is offering.

??
Along with specimens from the reptile family far and wide -- the yellow spotted monitor and the red spitting cobra, emerald tree boas and Burmese pythons -- there are the kind of interactive features that contemporary museum audiences seem to require. You can press a button and hear the distinctive cry of the crested gecko. In a frank acknowledgment that technology is always the better voyeuristic tool than actual proximity, there are cameras placed in a glass case filled with exotic geckos -- including the leaf-tail gecko, whose leechy, flattened body makes it look like something you'd peel off the bottom of your shoe. Visitors can zoom the camera in on the lizards inside that appear deeply unaware they are under constant surveillance.

??
But the coolest game was so awesome that kids were willingly abandoning their glass-fogging positions at the display cases to interact virtually. The video game allows them to assume the snake's point of view as they slither through a desert landscape looking for tasty vermin. "Goal: Eat a Rat" makes the mission crystal clear. If they hit the pounce button at the right time, the snake devours a croissant-sized rat. Grown-ups can ''have'' their reality TV -- it doesn't get any realer than this.

??
Lizards & Snakes: Alive! ''Through Aug. 12. $11-$13 general admission, free for members. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., noon-5 p.m. Fernbank Museum of Natural History, 767 Clifton Road. 404-929-6300. [http://www.fernbankmuseum.org/|www.fernbankmuseum.org].''"
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??
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??
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??
Along with specimens from the reptile family far and wide — the yellow spotted monitor and the red spitting cobra, emerald tree boas and Burmese pythons — there are the kind of interactive features that contemporary museum audiences seem to require. You can press a button and hear the distinctive cry of the crested gecko. In a frank acknowledgment that technology is always the better voyeuristic tool than actual proximity, there are cameras placed in a glass case filled with exotic geckos — including the leaf-tail gecko, whose leechy, flattened body makes it look like something you'd peel off the bottom of your shoe. Visitors can zoom the camera in on the lizards inside that appear deeply unaware they are under constant surveillance.

??
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??
Lizards & Snakes: Alive! Through Aug. 12. $11-$13 general admission, free for members. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., noon-5 p.m. Fernbank Museum of Natural History, 767 Clifton Road. 404-929-6300. www.fernbankmuseum.org.             13023865 1265882                          Lizards & Snakes: Creeping the Fernbank "
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Wednesday February 21, 2007 12:04 am EST
Monitors, geckos and pythons – oh, my! | more...
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  string(3932) "The Velocity of Gesture, or How to Build an Empire is a show about the pure emotional wallop of art: the application of paint to canvas, the swirling, obsessive repetition of drawing, and the building and making of wholly original stuff for no utilitarian function. The Velocity of Gesture asserts that gesture does indeed have a power on its own terms, as an expression of individual agency and presence and a direct taproot into the artist's consciousness.

??
Despite a title that threatens to welcome all comers, The Velocity of Gesture (at Agnes Scott's Dalton Gallery) exhibits the often-elusive concept that makes group shows work: While not all the work separately is great, together the OK work is lifted up by the good.

??
A number of works evoke a world defined by the conceptual space of the Internet and the equally calamitous cityscape, as in the two large paintings by Albino Mattioli; fractured collisions of the artist's point of view and imaginative representations of physical space.

??
Recognizing that the usual borders of our lives — between public and private, for instance — are no longer intact, Andrea Prince allows her work to incorporate painting, installation and sculpture. Her colorful circular forms appear to leap from the flat, confined wall to hang like mobiles from the ceiling or grow like fungus. Prince's is not the only work that gets outside the frame. Gesture in this show can be the literal mark of a paintbrush or pen on paper, but it can also be the gesture of escaping the limited parameters of the picture frame or in many cases, the mental frame of straight, figurative representation.

??
Torkwase Dyson is another artist who gets outside the frame, creating video work and wall-bound installation pieces that bring a relevant kinetic energy to an object synonymous with freedom and movement: the car. Dyson's multimedia work examines the life cycle of the automobile with humorous aplomb. The work manages to send up the American worship of cars and comment on pollution without being didactic or pompous.

??
Much of the painting and installation work, while engaged with formalist concerns, also engages with topical issues and the texture of contemporary life, such as Rocio Rodriguez's references to Iraq in canvasses that convey the frenzy of a battle zone.

??
Many of the artists create imagery suggestive of, or derived from, maps that become a metaphor for consciousness. Sid Garrison's abstract drawings with colored pencils suggest satellite imagery of the terrain viewed from above. Also about individual subjectivity, Myrtha Vega's satisfying ink-on-paper drawings collapse travel into one loaded image: riots of roads and cities, country and town and work that suggests how space and time collapse quickly with air and car travel and how the human brain, especially when hyperstimulated by new places and new experiences in travel, can occupy many spheres of consciousness at once.

??
While the abstract expressionist tradition is to spill one's guts all over the canvas, many of these artists allow their visual information to clot and congeal, suggesting a consciousness more tightly reined in, and less freedom rather than more. Brent Fogt's repetitive drawings compress information into continents of pen marks and Teresa Bramlette Reeves creates comparable clots of graphic information such as lace work or Arabic handwriting.

??
It is a pleasure to see a show that satisfies on so many different levels without feeling like it fails, as so many group shows do, in its effort to be comprehensive. The show doesn't bite off too much and it doesn't visibly strain to incorporate work in every media. The show is formally, at least, pretty specific. It shows the pleasure of translating what can feel in the real world like too much: too much noise, too much information, into the far more pleasing realm of art that takes that mania and illuminates."
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  string(3938) "''The Velocity of Gesture, or How to Build an Empire'' is a show about the pure emotional wallop of art: the application of paint to canvas, the swirling, obsessive repetition of drawing, and the building and making of wholly original ''stuff'' for no utilitarian function. ''The Velocity of Gesture'' asserts that gesture does indeed have a power on its own terms, as an expression of individual agency and presence and a direct taproot into the artist's consciousness.

??
Despite a title that threatens to welcome all comers, ''The Velocity of Gesture'' (at Agnes Scott's Dalton Gallery) exhibits the often-elusive concept that makes group shows work: While not all the work separately is great, together the OK work is lifted up by the good.

??
A number of works evoke a world defined by the conceptual space of the Internet and the equally calamitous cityscape, as in the two large paintings by Albino Mattioli; fractured collisions of the artist's point of view and imaginative representations of physical space.

??
Recognizing that the usual borders of our lives -- between public and private, for instance -- are no longer intact, Andrea Prince allows her work to incorporate painting, installation and sculpture. Her colorful circular forms appear to leap from the flat, confined wall to hang like mobiles from the ceiling or grow like fungus. Prince's is not the only work that gets outside the frame. Gesture in this show can be the literal mark of a paintbrush or pen on paper, but it can also be the gesture of escaping the limited parameters of the picture frame or in many cases, the mental frame of straight, figurative representation.

??
Torkwase Dyson is another artist who gets outside the frame, creating video work and wall-bound installation pieces that bring a relevant kinetic energy to an object synonymous with freedom and movement: the car. Dyson's multimedia work examines the life cycle of the automobile with humorous aplomb. The work manages to send up the American worship of cars and comment on pollution without being didactic or pompous.

??
Much of the painting and installation work, while engaged with formalist concerns, also engages with topical issues and the texture of contemporary life, such as Rocio Rodriguez's references to Iraq in canvasses that convey the frenzy of a battle zone.

??
Many of the artists create imagery suggestive of, or derived from, maps that become a metaphor for consciousness. Sid Garrison's abstract drawings with colored pencils suggest satellite imagery of the terrain viewed from above. Also about individual subjectivity, Myrtha Vega's satisfying ink-on-paper drawings collapse travel into one loaded image: riots of roads and cities, country and town and work that suggests how space and time collapse quickly with air and car travel and how the human brain, especially when hyperstimulated by new places and new experiences in travel, can occupy many spheres of consciousness at once.

??
While the abstract expressionist tradition is to spill one's guts all over the canvas, many of these artists allow their visual information to clot and congeal, suggesting a consciousness more tightly reined in, and less freedom rather than more. Brent Fogt's repetitive drawings compress information into continents of pen marks and Teresa Bramlette Reeves creates comparable clots of graphic information such as lace work or Arabic handwriting.

??
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  string(4204) "    Dalton Gallery exhibition examines the artist's touch   2007-02-14T05:04:00+00:00 Velocity of Gesture: Making Their Mark   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-02-14T05:04:00+00:00  The Velocity of Gesture, or How to Build an Empire is a show about the pure emotional wallop of art: the application of paint to canvas, the swirling, obsessive repetition of drawing, and the building and making of wholly original stuff for no utilitarian function. The Velocity of Gesture asserts that gesture does indeed have a power on its own terms, as an expression of individual agency and presence and a direct taproot into the artist's consciousness.

??
Despite a title that threatens to welcome all comers, The Velocity of Gesture (at Agnes Scott's Dalton Gallery) exhibits the often-elusive concept that makes group shows work: While not all the work separately is great, together the OK work is lifted up by the good.

??
A number of works evoke a world defined by the conceptual space of the Internet and the equally calamitous cityscape, as in the two large paintings by Albino Mattioli; fractured collisions of the artist's point of view and imaginative representations of physical space.

??
Recognizing that the usual borders of our lives — between public and private, for instance — are no longer intact, Andrea Prince allows her work to incorporate painting, installation and sculpture. Her colorful circular forms appear to leap from the flat, confined wall to hang like mobiles from the ceiling or grow like fungus. Prince's is not the only work that gets outside the frame. Gesture in this show can be the literal mark of a paintbrush or pen on paper, but it can also be the gesture of escaping the limited parameters of the picture frame or in many cases, the mental frame of straight, figurative representation.

??
Torkwase Dyson is another artist who gets outside the frame, creating video work and wall-bound installation pieces that bring a relevant kinetic energy to an object synonymous with freedom and movement: the car. Dyson's multimedia work examines the life cycle of the automobile with humorous aplomb. The work manages to send up the American worship of cars and comment on pollution without being didactic or pompous.

??
Much of the painting and installation work, while engaged with formalist concerns, also engages with topical issues and the texture of contemporary life, such as Rocio Rodriguez's references to Iraq in canvasses that convey the frenzy of a battle zone.

??
Many of the artists create imagery suggestive of, or derived from, maps that become a metaphor for consciousness. Sid Garrison's abstract drawings with colored pencils suggest satellite imagery of the terrain viewed from above. Also about individual subjectivity, Myrtha Vega's satisfying ink-on-paper drawings collapse travel into one loaded image: riots of roads and cities, country and town and work that suggests how space and time collapse quickly with air and car travel and how the human brain, especially when hyperstimulated by new places and new experiences in travel, can occupy many spheres of consciousness at once.

??
While the abstract expressionist tradition is to spill one's guts all over the canvas, many of these artists allow their visual information to clot and congeal, suggesting a consciousness more tightly reined in, and less freedom rather than more. Brent Fogt's repetitive drawings compress information into continents of pen marks and Teresa Bramlette Reeves creates comparable clots of graphic information such as lace work or Arabic handwriting.

??
It is a pleasure to see a show that satisfies on so many different levels without feeling like it fails, as so many group shows do, in its effort to be comprehensive. The show doesn't bite off too much and it doesn't visibly strain to incorporate work in every media. The show is formally, at least, pretty specific. It shows the pleasure of translating what can feel in the real world like too much: too much noise, too much information, into the far more pleasing realm of art that takes that mania and illuminates.             13023825 1265797                          Velocity of Gesture: Making Their Mark "
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Wednesday February 14, 2007 12:04 am EST
Dalton Gallery exhibition examines the artist's touch | more...
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  string(4238) "The case of the "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" fiasco in Boston was bound to happen if you think of all the ways corporations have attempted to capture the coveted youth market via graffiti tagging, culture jamming and other low-key mayhem. If you team very wealthy corporations and very adventurous, nose-thumbing street artists, eventually someone's going to get burned.

??
But corporations such as Time Warner Inc. need inventiveness, creativity, bad attitude and snarkiness to freshen up their merchandise. And nowhere is that concept of youthful mirth traded for grown-up paychecks and health insurance more evident than in the exhibition Design at Play: The High Design & Low-Brow Humor of Cartoon Network at the Museum of Design Atlanta. The high-water mark in attitudinal irony and irreverence, Cartoon Network is dedicated to kids — whether the ones watching the cartoons or writing them — rattling the cages of their elders. Which makes for the slightly vertigo-inducing effect of this show. CN's irreverent wisenheimer attitude — as crucial to its identity as Wal-Mart's small-town ethos — essentially bolsters the economic bottom line of a company founded on the presupposition that you can use irreverence to distinguish your product, distancing it from the more ham-fisted hard sell.

??
In what will feel to more skeptical viewers like ping-ponging around a room-sized ad or a trade-show booth, the first gallery in the exhibition, titled "Promoting the Brand," features posters, business cards, letterhead and other more conventional marketing tools that suggest whimsy yoked to the corporate plow. The room also features the online games and adorably hip graphics meant to bore the brand under the skin. In a street-art touch, the walls have been graphically "tagged" with blood-red paint and black-and-white Powerpuff Girls, "Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends" and other mascots of fun. But the assemblage of the kind of swag (T-shirts, boxes of cookies, calendars) that is used to make jaded TV journalists, ad buyers and cable affiliates pay attention is more sales pitch than analysis of the Cartoon Network way, a deification of the brand in a town where that kind of glorifying is probably redundant.

??
It would have been nice to have had some context, some discussion of the designers' influences or an academic's view on the phenomenon to help break through the sense that we have entered some hipper version of the Disney store.

??
The second gallery goes on to solidify the peculiar mix of mildly crude humor and ahead-of-the-curve tactics that allow Cartoon Network (and its Adult Swim confreres) to capture the attention of a chronically ADD populace. The "Red" campaign should be familiar to locals who observed the transformation of the scarlet billboards proclaiming "I pooted" and other cryptic messages soon accompanied by cartoon figures from "Camp Lazlo." Like many Cartoon Network offerings, this summer 2006 campaign strove to train kids in the modern armature of irony, irreverence and confusion about whether one was being culture-jammed or marketed to.

??
It is not until the third gallery that some of the meat and potatoes emerge — there are animation cells, character sketches and background art for shows such as "Cow and Chicken" and "Samurai Jack." One of the most arresting features is the weirdly depopulated backgrounds that are remarkably serene and often quite beautiful before the frenzied, shrieking critters and nose-pickers enter stage right. This is the gallery that is going to make kids go crazy, with the enormous set pieces from television shows, including a complete retro-'60s living room where viewers can plop down to watch TV.

??
The odd impression this component of the show gives is of a genuine yearning for the past, a desire to really hunker down in the tacky living rooms of our own childhoods, even as we mock and parody the cuteness and lovability and feelings of security stoked by the characters we grew up on. It's a bipolar feeling. But why wouldn't it be, with a network as devoted as this one is to both indulging our desire for the empty pleasures of cartoons and then sadistically slapping our hand back from the cookie jar."
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??
But corporations such as Time Warner Inc. need inventiveness, creativity, bad attitude and snarkiness to freshen up their merchandise. And nowhere is that concept of youthful mirth traded for grown-up paychecks and health insurance more evident than in the exhibition ''Design at Play: The High Design & Low-Brow Humor of Cartoon Network'' at the Museum of Design Atlanta. The high-water mark in attitudinal irony and irreverence, Cartoon Network is dedicated to kids -- whether the ones watching the cartoons or writing them -- rattling the cages of their elders. Which makes for the slightly vertigo-inducing effect of this show. CN's irreverent wisenheimer attitude -- as crucial to its identity as Wal-Mart's small-town ethos -- essentially bolsters the economic bottom line of a company founded on the presupposition that you can use irreverence to distinguish your product, distancing it from the more ham-fisted hard sell.

??
In what will feel to more skeptical viewers like ping-ponging around a room-sized ad or a trade-show booth, the first gallery in the exhibition, titled "Promoting the Brand," features posters, business cards, letterhead and other more conventional marketing tools that suggest whimsy yoked to the corporate plow. The room also features the online games and adorably hip graphics meant to bore the brand under the skin. In a street-art touch, the walls have been graphically "tagged" with blood-red paint and black-and-white Powerpuff Girls, "Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends" and other mascots of fun. But the assemblage of the kind of swag (T-shirts, boxes of cookies, calendars) that is used to make jaded TV journalists, ad buyers and cable affiliates pay attention is more sales pitch than analysis of the Cartoon Network way, a deification of the brand in a town where that kind of glorifying is probably redundant.

??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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??
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Wednesday February 7, 2007 12:04 am EST
Does Design at Play celebrate culture jamming or marketing? | more...
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There is the unspoken promise of a filling, quick lunch.

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The Great Wall of noodles is the work of Sang-Wook Lee, a South Korean-born, Milledgeville, Ga.-based artist. It is one of three highly idiosyncratic installation works by three regional artists featured in the contemplative Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia exhibition Installations.

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Meditative in another sense, Martha Whittington's "Raddle Cross" is like a persistent toddler lugging on your shirt sleeves to get your attention. The piece puts out a sound like ping-pong paddles sending a ball across a table that resonates through the gallery space. Wooden circles of varying sizes are suspended from the gallery ceiling on long strands of yarn and hooked to metal gears that send the discs pinging off the concrete floors at metronomic intervals.

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This quirky piece, both addled and soothing, comments on the repetitive labors of weaving, though here the gestures are the opposite of productive, the necessary intersections between the threads never occurring.

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Another brainteaser, Martin Emanuel's "The Three Realties," engages one of the art world's favorite subjects — perception — and the artist's ability to manipulate it. A room-filling application of gonzo materials for minimalist effect, Emanuel employs colored lights attached to two humorously giant scaffolds to create a shadow picture on the wall. Like a string stretched across a guitar, Emanuel has strung a blue string between two nails on the wall. The room's darkness and aimed beams of light create an optical illusion: a red shadow and a green one, and the artist's own blue chalk line to create another layer of representation. The result is a meditation on how reality is constructed.

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Installations is certainly an affirmation that artists are engaged in a process much like Emanuel's, of creating their own physical realities to comment upon our own.

??
Martin Emanuel, Sang-Wook Lee, Martha Whittington: Installations. Through March 14. Tues.Sat., 10 a.m.5 p.m. The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, 1447 Peachtree St. 404-881-1109. www.mocaga.org."
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The Great Wall of noodles is the work of Sang-Wook Lee, a South Korean-born, Milledgeville, Ga.-based artist. It is one of three highly idiosyncratic installation works by three regional artists featured in the contemplative Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia exhibition ''Installations''.

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There are contradictions galore in Lee's piece: of mass-produced material and the deliberate and unique gestures of an artist. Titled "19,620," the hulking, room-filling piece is a poetic collision of the ephemeral and the eternal.

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Meditative in another sense, Martha Whittington's "Raddle Cross" is like a persistent toddler lugging on your shirt sleeves to get your attention. The piece puts out a sound like ping-pong paddles sending a ball across a table that resonates through the gallery space. Wooden circles of varying sizes are suspended from the gallery ceiling on long strands of yarn and hooked to metal gears that send the discs pinging off the concrete floors at metronomic intervals.

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This quirky piece, both addled and soothing, comments on the repetitive labors of weaving, though here the gestures are the opposite of productive, the necessary intersections between the threads never occurring.

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Another brainteaser, Martin Emanuel's "The Three Realties," engages one of the art world's favorite subjects -- perception -- and the artist's ability to manipulate it. A room-filling application of gonzo materials for minimalist effect, Emanuel employs colored lights attached to two humorously giant scaffolds to create a shadow picture on the wall. Like a string stretched across a guitar, Emanuel has strung a blue string between two nails on the wall. The room's darkness and aimed beams of light create an optical illusion: a red shadow and a green one, and the artist's own blue chalk line to create another layer of representation. The result is a meditation on how reality is constructed.

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''Installations'' is certainly an affirmation that artists are engaged in a process much like Emanuel's, of creating their own physical realities to comment upon our own.

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Martin Emanuel, Sang-Wook Lee, Martha Whittington: Installations. ''Through March 14. Tues.--Sat., 10 a.m.--5 p.m. The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, 1447 Peachtree St. 404-881-1109. [http://www.mocaga.org/|www.mocaga.org].''"
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??
There is the unspoken promise of a filling, quick lunch.

??
The Great Wall of noodles is the work of Sang-Wook Lee, a South Korean-born, Milledgeville, Ga.-based artist. It is one of three highly idiosyncratic installation works by three regional artists featured in the contemplative Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia exhibition Installations.

??
There are contradictions galore in Lee's piece: of mass-produced material and the deliberate and unique gestures of an artist. Titled "19,620," the hulking, room-filling piece is a poetic collision of the ephemeral and the eternal.

??
Meditative in another sense, Martha Whittington's "Raddle Cross" is like a persistent toddler lugging on your shirt sleeves to get your attention. The piece puts out a sound like ping-pong paddles sending a ball across a table that resonates through the gallery space. Wooden circles of varying sizes are suspended from the gallery ceiling on long strands of yarn and hooked to metal gears that send the discs pinging off the concrete floors at metronomic intervals.

??
This quirky piece, both addled and soothing, comments on the repetitive labors of weaving, though here the gestures are the opposite of productive, the necessary intersections between the threads never occurring.

??
Another brainteaser, Martin Emanuel's "The Three Realties," engages one of the art world's favorite subjects — perception — and the artist's ability to manipulate it. A room-filling application of gonzo materials for minimalist effect, Emanuel employs colored lights attached to two humorously giant scaffolds to create a shadow picture on the wall. Like a string stretched across a guitar, Emanuel has strung a blue string between two nails on the wall. The room's darkness and aimed beams of light create an optical illusion: a red shadow and a green one, and the artist's own blue chalk line to create another layer of representation. The result is a meditation on how reality is constructed.

??
Installations is certainly an affirmation that artists are engaged in a process much like Emanuel's, of creating their own physical realities to comment upon our own.

??
Martin Emanuel, Sang-Wook Lee, Martha Whittington: Installations. Through March 14. Tues.Sat., 10 a.m.5 p.m. The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, 1447 Peachtree St. 404-881-1109. www.mocaga.org.             13023684 1265402                          Contemporary contemplation "
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Article

Wednesday January 31, 2007 12:04 am EST
Three Installations at MOCA-GA | more...
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  string(3923) "Fans of self-taught artists know the routine: the childlike technique mixed with often-scary assertions of doom-filled prophecy and religious wrath.

Amongst the folkies, it is all fire and ice, sweet and salty and the conflicting urges of moral self-righteousness and off-the-leash libido.

Self-taught artist Louis Monza certainly brings some of folk art's eccentricity, paranoia and visions of paradise to his work. Trained as a traditional woodcarver in his native Italy, Monza had to make do as a laborer when he immigrated to America at age 16. But lady fate had a plan for Monza. A spinal injury in 1938 proved a big boon to his art career. Laid up for a year after a fall from a scaffold, Monza began to paint and draw. His wife, Heidi, a devout believer in his talent, struck a bargain with her husband: She would work so that he could create, but Monza better have something to show at the end of each day.

That spousal whip-cracking appeared to work. The collection of Monza's drawings, linocuts, monotypes and terra-cotta sculptures recently donated to the High Museum show an artist who tried his hand at many things. Some, such as bronze casting, were a bust, according to High Museum folk-art curator Susan Crawley. "Really weak. But that's OK. He did enough well."

Monza certainly never appeared to run out of sacred cows to pillory and alternative worlds to imagine. But while so many folkies descend into a vortex of their own peculiar obsessions, Monza (who died in 1984) was an artist who always kept his eyeballs trained on the culture. Early black-and-white linocuts depict an ongoing battle between malevolent institutions and working folk, with the former invariably exploiting the latter. It's Monza's black-and-white work that really sings, allowing for a disturbing collision of human and animal in the black mire of his fluid, morphing compositions.

With the acid-dipped disgust of a political cartoon, the 1955 linoleum block print "An American Tragedy" features one of Monza's real-world apocalypses. Soldiers marching to battle are contrasted with the static icons of the establishment running interference in a Flags of Our Fathers critique of the World War II war machine. It's an image that works as well in Bush-era America as it did in the post-WWII funk of Monza's age. Clergy, military and industrialists were "his primary targets," says Crawley, and his work has more scary men in black robes and crosses than any Luis Buñuel film.

Monza's color-pencil drawings are less interesting — pallid and vulgar compared with the complex mire of his black-and-white drawings and linocuts. "Figure Abstraction," done in 1971 and featuring a body composed of interlocking circles, has the look of a half-cocked, psychedelic doodle.

Sure, Monza also delved into some wackiness during his years in Redondo Beach, Calif. He was consumed with an idea of harmonious exchange between humans and animals that borders on the New Age and conjures up visions of other California fur-huggers such as Michael Jackson. Like so many self-taught artists, Monza's weirdness was best in small doses, such as his "Horse and Rider From Inner Space," a captivating terra-cotta figure of a man in a horned cap and pointy beard whose phallic attire is echoed in his horse's projectile snout.

But no mere dotty, homebound conspiracy theorist, Monza also levied some pointed social criticism in line with his earlier work; he drew monstrous, snaggletoothed fish to illustrate the effects of pollution on California fish. And in the 1970s, Monza did a series of linocuts dedicated to Watergate, complete with a puny, waving Nixon figure skedaddling out of Washington post-scandal.

The longer you stare at Monza's work, the more data emerges. It is easy to get lost, though you might not want to, in these mutating miasmas of animal and human, worldly and ethereal, design and nature, dystopia and paradise."
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Amongst the folkies, it is all fire and ice, sweet and salty and the conflicting urges of moral self-righteousness and off-the-leash libido.

Self-taught artist Louis Monza certainly brings some of folk art's eccentricity, paranoia and visions of paradise to his work. Trained as a traditional woodcarver in his native Italy, Monza had to make do as a laborer when he immigrated to America at age 16. But lady fate had a plan for Monza. A spinal injury in 1938 proved a big boon to his art career. Laid up for a year after a fall from a scaffold, Monza began to paint and draw. His wife, Heidi, a devout believer in his talent, struck a bargain with her husband: She would work so that he could create, but Monza better have something to show at the end of each day.

That spousal whip-cracking appeared to work. The collection of Monza's drawings, linocuts, monotypes and terra-cotta sculptures recently donated to the High Museum show an artist who tried his hand at many things. Some, such as bronze casting, were a bust, according to High Museum folk-art curator Susan Crawley. "Really weak. But that's OK. He did enough well."

Monza certainly never appeared to run out of sacred cows to pillory and alternative worlds to imagine. But while so many folkies descend into a vortex of their own peculiar obsessions, Monza (who died in 1984) was an artist who always kept his eyeballs trained on the culture. Early black-and-white linocuts depict an ongoing battle between malevolent institutions and working folk, with the former invariably exploiting the latter. It's Monza's black-and-white work that really sings, allowing for a disturbing collision of human and animal in the black mire of his fluid, morphing compositions.

With the acid-dipped disgust of a political cartoon, the 1955 linoleum block print "An American Tragedy" features one of Monza's real-world apocalypses. Soldiers marching to battle are contrasted with the static icons of the establishment running interference in a ''Flags of Our Fathers'' critique of the World War II war machine. It's an image that works as well in Bush-era America as it did in the post-WWII funk of Monza's age. Clergy, military and industrialists were "his primary targets," says Crawley, and his work has more scary men in black robes and crosses than any Luis Buñuel film.

Monza's color-pencil drawings are less interesting -- pallid and vulgar compared with the complex mire of his black-and-white drawings and linocuts. "Figure Abstraction," done in 1971 and featuring a body composed of interlocking circles, has the look of a half-cocked, psychedelic doodle.

Sure, Monza also delved into some wackiness during his years in Redondo Beach, Calif. He was consumed with an idea of harmonious exchange between humans and animals that borders on the New Age and conjures up visions of other California fur-huggers such as Michael Jackson. Like so many self-taught artists, Monza's weirdness was best in small doses, such as his "Horse and Rider From Inner Space," a captivating terra-cotta figure of a man in a horned cap and pointy beard whose phallic attire is echoed in his horse's projectile snout.

But no mere dotty, homebound conspiracy theorist, Monza also levied some pointed social criticism in line with his earlier work; he drew monstrous, snaggletoothed fish to illustrate the effects of pollution on California fish. And in the 1970s, Monza did a series of linocuts dedicated to Watergate, complete with a puny, waving Nixon figure skedaddling out of Washington post-scandal.

The longer you stare at Monza's work, the more data emerges. It is easy to get lost, though you might not want to, in these mutating miasmas of animal and human, worldly and ethereal, design and nature, dystopia and paradise."
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Amongst the folkies, it is all fire and ice, sweet and salty and the conflicting urges of moral self-righteousness and off-the-leash libido.

Self-taught artist Louis Monza certainly brings some of folk art's eccentricity, paranoia and visions of paradise to his work. Trained as a traditional woodcarver in his native Italy, Monza had to make do as a laborer when he immigrated to America at age 16. But lady fate had a plan for Monza. A spinal injury in 1938 proved a big boon to his art career. Laid up for a year after a fall from a scaffold, Monza began to paint and draw. His wife, Heidi, a devout believer in his talent, struck a bargain with her husband: She would work so that he could create, but Monza better have something to show at the end of each day.

That spousal whip-cracking appeared to work. The collection of Monza's drawings, linocuts, monotypes and terra-cotta sculptures recently donated to the High Museum show an artist who tried his hand at many things. Some, such as bronze casting, were a bust, according to High Museum folk-art curator Susan Crawley. "Really weak. But that's OK. He did enough well."

Monza certainly never appeared to run out of sacred cows to pillory and alternative worlds to imagine. But while so many folkies descend into a vortex of their own peculiar obsessions, Monza (who died in 1984) was an artist who always kept his eyeballs trained on the culture. Early black-and-white linocuts depict an ongoing battle between malevolent institutions and working folk, with the former invariably exploiting the latter. It's Monza's black-and-white work that really sings, allowing for a disturbing collision of human and animal in the black mire of his fluid, morphing compositions.

With the acid-dipped disgust of a political cartoon, the 1955 linoleum block print "An American Tragedy" features one of Monza's real-world apocalypses. Soldiers marching to battle are contrasted with the static icons of the establishment running interference in a Flags of Our Fathers critique of the World War II war machine. It's an image that works as well in Bush-era America as it did in the post-WWII funk of Monza's age. Clergy, military and industrialists were "his primary targets," says Crawley, and his work has more scary men in black robes and crosses than any Luis Buñuel film.

Monza's color-pencil drawings are less interesting — pallid and vulgar compared with the complex mire of his black-and-white drawings and linocuts. "Figure Abstraction," done in 1971 and featuring a body composed of interlocking circles, has the look of a half-cocked, psychedelic doodle.

Sure, Monza also delved into some wackiness during his years in Redondo Beach, Calif. He was consumed with an idea of harmonious exchange between humans and animals that borders on the New Age and conjures up visions of other California fur-huggers such as Michael Jackson. Like so many self-taught artists, Monza's weirdness was best in small doses, such as his "Horse and Rider From Inner Space," a captivating terra-cotta figure of a man in a horned cap and pointy beard whose phallic attire is echoed in his horse's projectile snout.

But no mere dotty, homebound conspiracy theorist, Monza also levied some pointed social criticism in line with his earlier work; he drew monstrous, snaggletoothed fish to illustrate the effects of pollution on California fish. And in the 1970s, Monza did a series of linocuts dedicated to Watergate, complete with a puny, waving Nixon figure skedaddling out of Washington post-scandal.

The longer you stare at Monza's work, the more data emerges. It is easy to get lost, though you might not want to, in these mutating miasmas of animal and human, worldly and ethereal, design and nature, dystopia and paradise.             13023652 1265341                          Visual Arts - California dreaming "
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Wednesday January 31, 2007 12:04 am EST
The High trips its way through the art of Louis Monza | more...
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  string(5665) "How different would our impression of American history be if Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 had begun, "Normalcy — never again"?

??
Instead, King diverged from his prepared words that day and in the process crafted one of the most memorable speeches of the 20th century.

??
A moment in history that in retrospect seems so concrete was once, as an early draft of King's "I Have a Dream" speech on view at the Atlanta History Center illustrates, a work in progress. It can be easily altered by a single individual's stroke of inspiration.

??
It's an idea that emerges repeatedly in the splendid exhibition I Have a Dream: The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection at the Atlanta History Center. The exhibition opened Jan. 15, on the anniversary of the famed civil-rights leader's birth.

??
The 600 documents and books in the exhibition have been culled from a larger collection of 10,000 items now housed at King's alma mater, Morehouse College. I Have a Dream marks a triumphant homecoming of sorts for a collection that once hung in an uncertain limbo, slated to be sold to the highest bidder at the New York auction house Sotheby's. At the last minute, a group of business and civic leaders purchased King's papers (under the prodding of Mayor Shirley Franklin) for $32 million. The effect of seeing these documents firsthand, so many of them directly tied to King's time in Atlanta, makes the thought of them ending up anywhere else unimaginable.

??
The thrill of viewing original documents, the connection through paperwork to a subject's life, the feeling of leaving your own time and entering a new one — all of those sensations that surely mark a historian's relationship to material culture give a frisson of excitement and anticipation to what might at first appear to be a bare-bones accumulation of books and papers.

??
But what should be static instead feels astoundingly alive and protean.

??
Concerned with King's intellectual, spiritual and emotional maturation, the exhibition features in large part documents touched by King's hand. There are copious sermons written on notebook paper, each page carefully numbered. There are examples of King's fastidious schoolwork from his years at Morehouse College. There are books by Langston Hughes and Carl Sandburg from his personal collection displayed open-face to reveal underlined passages.

??
Some of the documents are fascinating, such as the list of instructions, endorsed by King, for black commuters after the Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott in 1955, suggesting how to deal with the potentially volatile situation of blacks suddenly demanding equal treatment on city buses. The list of suggestions is amazingly polite and acquiescent ("Do not boast! Do not brag!"), and offers a window into not only the breadth and depth of King's commitment to nonviolent tactics but also the good manners of an age when grace could hope to disarm cruelty.

??
King wrote on anything within reach, from envelopes to used letterhead. He wrote in red, blue and even pink ink so that you sense the urgency of his words over the implement he chose. It is one of the shocks of the exhibit to see words that would one day become part of our historical firmament written on ordinary loose-leaf paper. The exhibition shows how even the most hallowed speeches begin as ordinary outlines, with mistakes and imprints of human uncertainty. In our culture of shortcuts, cronyism and anti-intellectualism, this evidence of King's avid devotion to learning is an affirmation that knowledge is not extemporaneous, but hard-won.

??
But I Have a Dream is as much a portrait of King's emotional impact as it is a testament to his impressive intellect. It shows that King was more than a historical figure; he was a man so beloved that to think of him only as a civil-rights icon diminishes the intimacy and the depth of love that people feel for him.

??
The exhibition also reveals King's human, self-doubting side — such as his questions about the intellectual legitimacy of religion — as well as his remarkable achievements. This vulnerability only increases a sense of personal connection. I Have a Dream feels like sifting through the belongings of a loved one recently passed away. King's spirit is reanimated somehow in looking at this material evidence of his life.

??
Part of that connection undoubtedly is fostered by such random items as the distinctive cant of King's handwriting, the rusty imprint of a paper clip on a page and the intimacy that pen put to paper allows. This sense of personalization may be forever lost in our own age beholden to word processors and the delete button. As moving in its form and shape as music, King's handwriting invites a view of this man that is immediate and unconscious.

??
It is hard to deny the power even in these inanimate things, as invested as they are with the aura of the man himself. From the boxes filled with quotes King compiled at Morehouse College to the underlined passages in the books from his personal library, I Have a Dream is evidence of an avid, omnivorous intellect: the education of a public figure who remained a student throughout his life.

??
Where some might carry a rabbit's foot or photograph of a child, King kept a folded bit of paper with him that illustrated this lifelong desire to be a pupil of goodness and righteousness. His importance as both a public intellectual and a moral icon guided by the voices of the past is nowhere more evident than in this quote from his spiritual mentor, Mahatma Ghandi: "In the midst of death, life persists.""
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??
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??
A moment in history that in retrospect seems so concrete was once, as an early draft of King's "I Have a Dream" speech on view at the Atlanta History Center illustrates, a work in progress. It can be easily altered by a single individual's stroke of inspiration.

??
It's an idea that emerges repeatedly in the splendid exhibition ''I Have a Dream: The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection'' at the Atlanta History Center. The exhibition opened Jan. 15, on the anniversary of the famed civil-rights leader's birth.

??
The 600 documents and books in the exhibition have been culled from a larger collection of 10,000 items now housed at King's alma mater, Morehouse College. ''I Have a Dream'' marks a triumphant homecoming of sorts for a collection that once hung in an uncertain limbo, slated to be sold to the highest bidder at the New York auction house Sotheby's. At the last minute, a group of business and civic leaders purchased King's papers (under the prodding of Mayor Shirley Franklin) for $32 million. The effect of seeing these documents firsthand, so many of them directly tied to King's time in Atlanta, makes the thought of them ending up anywhere else unimaginable.

??
The thrill of viewing original documents, the connection through paperwork to a subject's life, the feeling of leaving your own time and entering a new one -- all of those sensations that surely mark a historian's relationship to material culture give a frisson of excitement and anticipation to what might at first appear to be a bare-bones accumulation of books and papers.

??
But what should be static instead feels astoundingly alive and protean.

??
Concerned with King's intellectual, spiritual and emotional maturation, the exhibition features in large part documents touched by King's hand. There are copious sermons written on notebook paper, each page carefully numbered. There are examples of King's fastidious schoolwork from his years at Morehouse College. There are books by Langston Hughes and Carl Sandburg from his personal collection displayed open-face to reveal underlined passages.

??
Some of the documents are fascinating, such as the list of instructions, endorsed by King, for black commuters after the Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott in 1955, suggesting how to deal with the potentially volatile situation of blacks suddenly demanding equal treatment on city buses. The list of suggestions is amazingly polite and acquiescent ("Do not boast! Do not brag!"), and offers a window into not only the breadth and depth of King's commitment to nonviolent tactics but also the good manners of an age when grace could hope to disarm cruelty.

??
King wrote on anything within reach, from envelopes to used letterhead. He wrote in red, blue and even pink ink so that you sense the urgency of his words over the implement he chose. It is one of the shocks of the exhibit to see words that would one day become part of our historical firmament written on ordinary loose-leaf paper. The exhibition shows how even the most hallowed speeches begin as ordinary outlines, with mistakes and imprints of human uncertainty. In our culture of shortcuts, cronyism and anti-intellectualism, this evidence of King's avid devotion to learning is an affirmation that knowledge is not extemporaneous, but hard-won.

??
But ''I Have a Dream'' is as much a portrait of King's emotional impact as it is a testament to his impressive intellect. It shows that King was more than a historical figure; he was a man so beloved that to think of him only as a civil-rights icon diminishes the intimacy and the depth of love that people feel for him.

??
The exhibition also reveals King's human, self-doubting side -- such as his questions about the intellectual legitimacy of religion -- as well as his remarkable achievements. This vulnerability only increases a sense of personal connection. ''I Have a Dream'' feels like sifting through the belongings of a loved one recently passed away. King's spirit is reanimated somehow in looking at this material evidence of his life.

??
Part of that connection undoubtedly is fostered by such random items as the distinctive cant of King's handwriting, the rusty imprint of a paper clip on a page and the intimacy that pen put to paper allows. This sense of personalization may be forever lost in our own age beholden to word processors and the delete button. As moving in its form and shape as music, King's handwriting invites a view of this man that is immediate and unconscious.

??
It is hard to deny the power even in these inanimate things, as invested as they are with the aura of the man himself. From the boxes filled with quotes King compiled at Morehouse College to the underlined passages in the books from his personal library, ''I Have a Dream'' is evidence of an avid, omnivorous intellect: the education of a public figure who remained a student throughout his life.

??
Where some might carry a rabbit's foot or photograph of a child, King kept a folded bit of paper with him that illustrated this lifelong desire to be a pupil of goodness and righteousness. His importance as both a public intellectual and a moral icon guided by the voices of the past is nowhere more evident than in this quote from his spiritual mentor, Mahatma Ghandi: "In the midst of death, life persists.""
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??
Instead, King diverged from his prepared words that day and in the process crafted one of the most memorable speeches of the 20th century.

??
A moment in history that in retrospect seems so concrete was once, as an early draft of King's "I Have a Dream" speech on view at the Atlanta History Center illustrates, a work in progress. It can be easily altered by a single individual's stroke of inspiration.

??
It's an idea that emerges repeatedly in the splendid exhibition I Have a Dream: The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection at the Atlanta History Center. The exhibition opened Jan. 15, on the anniversary of the famed civil-rights leader's birth.

??
The 600 documents and books in the exhibition have been culled from a larger collection of 10,000 items now housed at King's alma mater, Morehouse College. I Have a Dream marks a triumphant homecoming of sorts for a collection that once hung in an uncertain limbo, slated to be sold to the highest bidder at the New York auction house Sotheby's. At the last minute, a group of business and civic leaders purchased King's papers (under the prodding of Mayor Shirley Franklin) for $32 million. The effect of seeing these documents firsthand, so many of them directly tied to King's time in Atlanta, makes the thought of them ending up anywhere else unimaginable.

??
The thrill of viewing original documents, the connection through paperwork to a subject's life, the feeling of leaving your own time and entering a new one — all of those sensations that surely mark a historian's relationship to material culture give a frisson of excitement and anticipation to what might at first appear to be a bare-bones accumulation of books and papers.

??
But what should be static instead feels astoundingly alive and protean.

??
Concerned with King's intellectual, spiritual and emotional maturation, the exhibition features in large part documents touched by King's hand. There are copious sermons written on notebook paper, each page carefully numbered. There are examples of King's fastidious schoolwork from his years at Morehouse College. There are books by Langston Hughes and Carl Sandburg from his personal collection displayed open-face to reveal underlined passages.

??
Some of the documents are fascinating, such as the list of instructions, endorsed by King, for black commuters after the Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott in 1955, suggesting how to deal with the potentially volatile situation of blacks suddenly demanding equal treatment on city buses. The list of suggestions is amazingly polite and acquiescent ("Do not boast! Do not brag!"), and offers a window into not only the breadth and depth of King's commitment to nonviolent tactics but also the good manners of an age when grace could hope to disarm cruelty.

??
King wrote on anything within reach, from envelopes to used letterhead. He wrote in red, blue and even pink ink so that you sense the urgency of his words over the implement he chose. It is one of the shocks of the exhibit to see words that would one day become part of our historical firmament written on ordinary loose-leaf paper. The exhibition shows how even the most hallowed speeches begin as ordinary outlines, with mistakes and imprints of human uncertainty. In our culture of shortcuts, cronyism and anti-intellectualism, this evidence of King's avid devotion to learning is an affirmation that knowledge is not extemporaneous, but hard-won.

??
But I Have a Dream is as much a portrait of King's emotional impact as it is a testament to his impressive intellect. It shows that King was more than a historical figure; he was a man so beloved that to think of him only as a civil-rights icon diminishes the intimacy and the depth of love that people feel for him.

??
The exhibition also reveals King's human, self-doubting side — such as his questions about the intellectual legitimacy of religion — as well as his remarkable achievements. This vulnerability only increases a sense of personal connection. I Have a Dream feels like sifting through the belongings of a loved one recently passed away. King's spirit is reanimated somehow in looking at this material evidence of his life.

??
Part of that connection undoubtedly is fostered by such random items as the distinctive cant of King's handwriting, the rusty imprint of a paper clip on a page and the intimacy that pen put to paper allows. This sense of personalization may be forever lost in our own age beholden to word processors and the delete button. As moving in its form and shape as music, King's handwriting invites a view of this man that is immediate and unconscious.

??
It is hard to deny the power even in these inanimate things, as invested as they are with the aura of the man himself. From the boxes filled with quotes King compiled at Morehouse College to the underlined passages in the books from his personal library, I Have a Dream is evidence of an avid, omnivorous intellect: the education of a public figure who remained a student throughout his life.

??
Where some might carry a rabbit's foot or photograph of a child, King kept a folded bit of paper with him that illustrated this lifelong desire to be a pupil of goodness and righteousness. His importance as both a public intellectual and a moral icon guided by the voices of the past is nowhere more evident than in this quote from his spiritual mentor, Mahatma Ghandi: "In the midst of death, life persists."             13023624 1265255                          Home for the holiday "
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Wednesday January 24, 2007 12:04 am EST
King's I Have a Dream collection offers the personal touch | more...
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  string(3947) "If Vietnam was the photojournalist's war, then Iraq is the videographer's. Soldiers carry cameras and the new dominance of reality TV has given the public an insatiable thirst for documentary reality. We are bombarded with images on the nightly news of the conflict.

??
But the question worth asking is whether the escalation in imagery seen of the Iraq war has better informed us about what is really going on, or merely desensitized us? Perhaps more imagery simply enhances a sense of confusion and disorientation, blinding us in the fog of war.

??
Forty-six-year-old New York City artist Steve Mumford's artwork defies that deluge of the quick scroll, the sound bite, the nightly news video maelstrom. Mumford traveled on four occasions to Iraq beginning in April 2003, spending a total of 11 months, off and on, as an embedded artist in Baghdad and the Sunni Triangle. He posted some of his dispatches on the online art journal artnet and created art based on his experiences there, a selection of which will appear locally at the Atlanta College of Art Gallery at the Savannah College of Art and Design.

??
If Mumford has an agenda, which he is reluctant to present as such, it is to step back and record the diurnal, subjective and sensory elements of war from within the frantic blitzkrieg of our usual hyped-up, superficial reportage.

??
There is an eerie calm at the heart of Mumford's watercolors and ink drawings, and his large-scale paintings. Unlike movie images of war, full of cataclysm and movement, there is only waiting and a pregnant hesitation. The ellipses between battle rather than the grand cataclysms are Mumford's contribution to what we think we know about war.

??
"Drawing is a much slower process, so what I was interested in was capturing those slower moments," Mumford says. "Ninety percent of the time in Iraq the soldiers are just standing around."

??
In Mumford's images, soldiers wait in the cool shade of a building, guns at the ready for some unseen figure to pass down the sunny street.

??
Children scramble for candy at the perimeter of an American Humvee. Daily life unfolds at Iraqi cafes and markets.

??
But there are more pointed images, too, of a memorial for a fallen American soldier and another of hooded "Suspects" captured by the American military.

??
Although still founded on stasis and calm, it is in a later body of work that Mumford's documentation becomes laced with dramatic profundity.

??
After leaving Iraq in October 2004, Mumford says "I wanted to maintain contact with the Iraq war although I wasn't going back."

??
And so he began drawing soldiers recovering from their injuries at Walter Reed and Brooke Army Medical Center in Texas.

??
Like his war-zone work, its meaning ultimately depending upon the viewer's perspective, his images of war-maimed soldiers feel like Rorschach tests.

??
Depending upon your sensibility, the images of men with paralyzed or missing limbs waiting patiently on exercise mats or staring off into space are haunting or affirmative. An illustration of the horrors of war. Or proof that any trial can be overcome.

??
To Mumford, the images show the resilience and endurance of the injured soldiers, such as the one, pausing on an exercise bike, who has wrapped an American flag bandana around one of his stumps.

??
"I wanted to capture ... that some part of their camaraderie and their spirit hadn't dimmed in spite of their wounds. I make my stuff and put it out there and then it, in a way, has a life of its own," Mumford says of work that has incensed and inspired critics on both sides of the political spectrum. "I think that's part of the ambivalence and ambiguity of war. It attracts us as human beings, and especially as men and yet it can have devastating and lifelong consequences."

??
felicia.feaster@creativeloafing.com

??
Steve Mumford will be in attendance at an opening reception at the gallery on Thurs., Jan. 18, 6-8 p.m."
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??
"Drawing is a much slower process, so what I was interested in was capturing those slower moments," Mumford says. "Ninety percent of the time in Iraq the soldiers are just standing around."

??
In Mumford's images, soldiers wait in the cool shade of a building, guns at the ready for some unseen figure to pass down the sunny street.

??
Children scramble for candy at the perimeter of an American Humvee. Daily life unfolds at Iraqi cafes and markets.

??
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??
Although still founded on stasis and calm, it is in a later body of work that Mumford's documentation becomes laced with dramatic profundity.

??
After leaving Iraq in October 2004, Mumford says "I wanted to maintain contact with the Iraq war although I wasn't going back."

??
And so he began drawing soldiers recovering from their injuries at Walter Reed and Brooke Army Medical Center in Texas.

??
Like his war-zone work, its meaning ultimately depending upon the viewer's perspective, his images of war-maimed soldiers feel like Rorschach tests.

??
Depending upon your sensibility, the images of men with paralyzed or missing limbs waiting patiently on exercise mats or staring off into space are haunting or affirmative. An illustration of the horrors of war. Or proof that any trial can be overcome.

??
To Mumford, the images show the resilience and endurance of the injured soldiers, such as the one, pausing on an exercise bike, who has wrapped an American flag bandana around one of his stumps.

??
"I wanted to capture ... that some part of their camaraderie and their spirit hadn't dimmed in spite of their wounds. I make my stuff and put it out there and then it, in a way, has a life of its own," Mumford says of work that has incensed and inspired critics on both sides of the political spectrum. "I think that's part of the ambivalence and ambiguity of war. It attracts us as human beings, and especially as men and yet it can have devastating and lifelong consequences."

??
''[mailto:felicia.feaster@creativeloafing.com|felicia.feaster@creativeloafing.com]''

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  string(4160) "    Steve Mumford paints into the zone   2007-01-17T05:04:00+00:00 The unobserved war   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-01-17T05:04:00+00:00  If Vietnam was the photojournalist's war, then Iraq is the videographer's. Soldiers carry cameras and the new dominance of reality TV has given the public an insatiable thirst for documentary reality. We are bombarded with images on the nightly news of the conflict.

??
But the question worth asking is whether the escalation in imagery seen of the Iraq war has better informed us about what is really going on, or merely desensitized us? Perhaps more imagery simply enhances a sense of confusion and disorientation, blinding us in the fog of war.

??
Forty-six-year-old New York City artist Steve Mumford's artwork defies that deluge of the quick scroll, the sound bite, the nightly news video maelstrom. Mumford traveled on four occasions to Iraq beginning in April 2003, spending a total of 11 months, off and on, as an embedded artist in Baghdad and the Sunni Triangle. He posted some of his dispatches on the online art journal artnet and created art based on his experiences there, a selection of which will appear locally at the Atlanta College of Art Gallery at the Savannah College of Art and Design.

??
If Mumford has an agenda, which he is reluctant to present as such, it is to step back and record the diurnal, subjective and sensory elements of war from within the frantic blitzkrieg of our usual hyped-up, superficial reportage.

??
There is an eerie calm at the heart of Mumford's watercolors and ink drawings, and his large-scale paintings. Unlike movie images of war, full of cataclysm and movement, there is only waiting and a pregnant hesitation. The ellipses between battle rather than the grand cataclysms are Mumford's contribution to what we think we know about war.

??
"Drawing is a much slower process, so what I was interested in was capturing those slower moments," Mumford says. "Ninety percent of the time in Iraq the soldiers are just standing around."

??
In Mumford's images, soldiers wait in the cool shade of a building, guns at the ready for some unseen figure to pass down the sunny street.

??
Children scramble for candy at the perimeter of an American Humvee. Daily life unfolds at Iraqi cafes and markets.

??
But there are more pointed images, too, of a memorial for a fallen American soldier and another of hooded "Suspects" captured by the American military.

??
Although still founded on stasis and calm, it is in a later body of work that Mumford's documentation becomes laced with dramatic profundity.

??
After leaving Iraq in October 2004, Mumford says "I wanted to maintain contact with the Iraq war although I wasn't going back."

??
And so he began drawing soldiers recovering from their injuries at Walter Reed and Brooke Army Medical Center in Texas.

??
Like his war-zone work, its meaning ultimately depending upon the viewer's perspective, his images of war-maimed soldiers feel like Rorschach tests.

??
Depending upon your sensibility, the images of men with paralyzed or missing limbs waiting patiently on exercise mats or staring off into space are haunting or affirmative. An illustration of the horrors of war. Or proof that any trial can be overcome.

??
To Mumford, the images show the resilience and endurance of the injured soldiers, such as the one, pausing on an exercise bike, who has wrapped an American flag bandana around one of his stumps.

??
"I wanted to capture ... that some part of their camaraderie and their spirit hadn't dimmed in spite of their wounds. I make my stuff and put it out there and then it, in a way, has a life of its own," Mumford says of work that has incensed and inspired critics on both sides of the political spectrum. "I think that's part of the ambivalence and ambiguity of war. It attracts us as human beings, and especially as men and yet it can have devastating and lifelong consequences."

??
felicia.feaster@creativeloafing.com

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Steve Mumford will be in attendance at an opening reception at the gallery on Thurs., Jan. 18, 6-8 p.m.             13023542 1265080                          The unobserved war "
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Article

Wednesday January 17, 2007 12:04 am EST
Steve Mumford paints into the zone | more...
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  string(5492) "A pleasure from start to finish, Daniel Bozhkov's A Survey is about the most fun you can have in a contemporary art space. An artist of far-ranging interests but with a consistently clever and humanistic wit, the Bulgarian-born and New York-based Bozhkov delights in art projects that bring ordinary people, strange activities and fluke into his endeavors.

??
Some artists make objects, but Bozhkov creates test kitchens for wild mixes of unlikely ingredients whipped into a delicious whole.

??
In his exceptionally diverse projects, the artist has created, advertised and test-marketed a perfume called "Eau d'Ernest" meant to evoke the essence of Ernest Hemingway with the expected "vulnerable and tragic notes."

??
Bozhkov has dressed as pure evil-turned-environmentalist Darth Vader and attempted the Sisyphean task of cleaning the Black Sea using an ordinary household Brita filter.

??
He has gotten a job as a Wal-Mart greeter and dressed in the "Our People Make the Difference" vest, and painted a decorative fresco in the store.

??
In Istanbul, he trained as a pretzel vendor, crafting his pretzels into pictograms of Turkish words such as "eye," "gift" and "tail" and selling them to passersby.

??
On their own, all of these funny, inventive projects would be winning stuff, canny illustrations that the art world does not have to be detached from the "real" world.

??
But Bozhkov is an artist who delights in the way his ideas often play out when he brings in unknown elements; how they are transformed by the sites he chooses and the things he learns. So, when his goofy Wal-Mart fresco illustrated with surreal-meets-homespun images (such as one of a bottle of Tide and an aboveground pool party) became damaged by the Wal-Mart flow of merchandise and people, he consulted a noted Italian fresco restorer for advice.

??
The fresco expert's "advice"? In a nutshell: Let it be. The scratches and dings on the fresco were historical evidence of the interaction between Wal-Mart and the artwork.

??
Dominating the main gallery is the Contemporary's most comprehensive example of one of Bozhkov's endeavors called "Learn How to Fly Over a Very Large Larry."

??
After consultation with an amateur naturalist and the owner of the field, Bozhkov created a crop-circle picture of Larry King's face in a Maine hayfield. In the usual "and then ..." coda to the project, Larry King himself commented upon the artwork on his CNN talk show, undoubtedly finding a suitably colossal celebration of his enormous ego in the giant earth work.

??
And then ...

??
Bozhkov learned to fly in order to see his creation in its rightful perspective, from the air.

??
And then ...

??
Created a perceptually distorted living room couch and coffee table in the gallery so that viewers could watch the media event on TV.

??
Clearly inspired by the interactivity of Bozhkov's artworks and his own curatorial devotion to "engaging" with his own artists and the community at large, Contemporary curator Stuart Horodner has taken one of Bozhkov's preexisting projects "Fastest Guided Tours of Unfamiliar Places" and given it a local spin. In "Fastest," Bozhkov takes visitors on a whirlwind tour of their own city, offering his own out-of-towner's "authoritative" commentary on the sites they visit. For Survey, Horodner has invited a team of Atlantans — an urban planner, a copyright attorney and a Georgia State psychologist — to offer their own tours of Bozhkov's show.

??
One of the most satisfying elements to Bozhkov's work is how it engages with national identities, whether the pretzel project in Istanbul, with its layered examination of language, history and consumer habits, or the pop-culture fun of invoking the iconic Americana of Larry King, Star Wars and Wal-Mart. With his distinct accent and heavy beard and intense, dark looks, Bozhkov evokes "difference" as both a Bulgarian and an artist.

??
That sense of outsiderness adds a piquant zing to his work — especially interesting as we watch him embody the quintessential small-town, hometown corporate identity of Wal-Mart in a videotape where he greets customers entering a Skowhegan, Maine, store. Without mean-spiritedness or irony but with a refreshing spirit of goodwill, Bozhkov crafts something rich and telling about our chaotic, jumbled world, showing its fascinating, layered, prismatic dimensions, if we will only pay enough attention.

??
In Greta Pratt's related project, "Nineteen Lincolns," also on view at the Contemporary, the artist has photographed 19 different men: from a white-haired elder to a pimply faced teen, dressed as that most American of presidents.

??
What makes a Lincoln?, Pratt's project asks. Is it the thoughtful gaze? The stovepipe hat? The square beard? The ordinary Caucasian male features?

??
Like Bozhkov's work, Pratt's answer is wonderfully inclusive, suggesting that in their impersonations, whether built on physical resemblance or a "Lincolnesque" gesture, all manage a likeness on some level, achieving greatness and nobility in their own way.

??
The only disappointment in this exceptionally witty combination of artists is work by Camille Norment about the alternate perceptions created in a distorting mirror, and a photo mural of a cypress grove reflected in the water below. When the two pieces are placed together and the mirror reflects the forest, what Norment is saying about perception becomes muddled.

??
It's a minor false note in a superior show."
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??
Some artists make objects, but Bozhkov creates test kitchens for wild mixes of unlikely ingredients whipped into a delicious whole.

??
In his exceptionally diverse projects, the artist has created, advertised and test-marketed a perfume called "Eau d'Ernest" meant to evoke the essence of Ernest Hemingway with the expected "vulnerable and tragic notes."

??
Bozhkov has dressed as pure evil-turned-environmentalist Darth Vader and attempted the Sisyphean task of cleaning the Black Sea using an ordinary household Brita filter.

??
He has gotten a job as a Wal-Mart greeter and dressed in the "Our People Make the Difference" vest, and painted a decorative fresco in the store.

??
In Istanbul, he trained as a pretzel vendor, crafting his pretzels into pictograms of Turkish words such as "eye," "gift" and "tail" and selling them to passersby.

??
On their own, all of these funny, inventive projects would be winning stuff, canny illustrations that the art world does not have to be detached from the "real" world.

??
But Bozhkov is an artist who delights in the way his ideas often play out when he brings in unknown elements; how they are transformed by the sites he chooses and the things he learns. So, when his goofy Wal-Mart fresco illustrated with surreal-meets-homespun images (such as one of a bottle of Tide and an aboveground pool party) became damaged by the Wal-Mart flow of merchandise and people, he consulted a noted Italian fresco restorer for advice.

??
The fresco expert's "advice"? In a nutshell: Let it be. The scratches and dings on the fresco were historical evidence of the interaction between Wal-Mart and the artwork.

??
Dominating the main gallery is the Contemporary's most comprehensive example of one of Bozhkov's endeavors called "Learn How to Fly Over a Very Large Larry."

??
After consultation with an amateur naturalist and the owner of the field, Bozhkov created a crop-circle picture of Larry King's face in a Maine hayfield. In the usual "and then ..." coda to the project, Larry King himself commented upon the artwork on his CNN talk show, undoubtedly finding a suitably colossal celebration of his enormous ego in the giant earth work.

??
And then ...

??
Bozhkov learned to fly in order to see his creation in its rightful perspective, from the air.

??
And then ...

??
Created a perceptually distorted living room couch and coffee table in the gallery so that viewers could watch the media event on TV.

??
Clearly inspired by the interactivity of Bozhkov's artworks and his own curatorial devotion to "engaging" with his own artists and the community at large, Contemporary curator Stuart Horodner has taken one of Bozhkov's preexisting projects "Fastest Guided Tours of Unfamiliar Places" and given it a local spin. In "Fastest," Bozhkov takes visitors on a whirlwind tour of their own city, offering his own out-of-towner's "authoritative" commentary on the sites they visit. For ''Survey'', Horodner has invited a team of Atlantans -- an urban planner, a copyright attorney and a Georgia State psychologist -- to offer their own tours of Bozhkov's show.

??
One of the most satisfying elements to Bozhkov's work is how it engages with national identities, whether the pretzel project in Istanbul, with its layered examination of language, history and consumer habits, or the pop-culture fun of invoking the iconic Americana of Larry King, ''Star Wars'' and Wal-Mart. With his distinct accent and heavy beard and intense, dark looks, Bozhkov evokes "difference" as both a Bulgarian and an artist.

??
That sense of outsiderness adds a piquant zing to his work -- especially interesting as we watch him embody the quintessential small-town, hometown corporate identity of Wal-Mart in a videotape where he greets customers entering a Skowhegan, Maine, store. Without mean-spiritedness or irony but with a refreshing spirit of goodwill, Bozhkov crafts something rich and telling about our chaotic, jumbled world, showing its fascinating, layered, prismatic dimensions, if we will only pay enough attention.

??
In Greta Pratt's related project, "Nineteen Lincolns," also on view at the Contemporary, the artist has photographed 19 different men: from a white-haired elder to a pimply faced teen, dressed as that most American of presidents.

??
What makes a Lincoln?, Pratt's project asks. Is it the thoughtful gaze? The stovepipe hat? The square beard? The ordinary Caucasian male features?

??
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??
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??
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  string(5720) "    Daniel Bozhov takes a Survey of unlikely artistic ingredients   2007-01-10T05:04:00+00:00 Live & learn   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-01-10T05:04:00+00:00  A pleasure from start to finish, Daniel Bozhkov's A Survey is about the most fun you can have in a contemporary art space. An artist of far-ranging interests but with a consistently clever and humanistic wit, the Bulgarian-born and New York-based Bozhkov delights in art projects that bring ordinary people, strange activities and fluke into his endeavors.

??
Some artists make objects, but Bozhkov creates test kitchens for wild mixes of unlikely ingredients whipped into a delicious whole.

??
In his exceptionally diverse projects, the artist has created, advertised and test-marketed a perfume called "Eau d'Ernest" meant to evoke the essence of Ernest Hemingway with the expected "vulnerable and tragic notes."

??
Bozhkov has dressed as pure evil-turned-environmentalist Darth Vader and attempted the Sisyphean task of cleaning the Black Sea using an ordinary household Brita filter.

??
He has gotten a job as a Wal-Mart greeter and dressed in the "Our People Make the Difference" vest, and painted a decorative fresco in the store.

??
In Istanbul, he trained as a pretzel vendor, crafting his pretzels into pictograms of Turkish words such as "eye," "gift" and "tail" and selling them to passersby.

??
On their own, all of these funny, inventive projects would be winning stuff, canny illustrations that the art world does not have to be detached from the "real" world.

??
But Bozhkov is an artist who delights in the way his ideas often play out when he brings in unknown elements; how they are transformed by the sites he chooses and the things he learns. So, when his goofy Wal-Mart fresco illustrated with surreal-meets-homespun images (such as one of a bottle of Tide and an aboveground pool party) became damaged by the Wal-Mart flow of merchandise and people, he consulted a noted Italian fresco restorer for advice.

??
The fresco expert's "advice"? In a nutshell: Let it be. The scratches and dings on the fresco were historical evidence of the interaction between Wal-Mart and the artwork.

??
Dominating the main gallery is the Contemporary's most comprehensive example of one of Bozhkov's endeavors called "Learn How to Fly Over a Very Large Larry."

??
After consultation with an amateur naturalist and the owner of the field, Bozhkov created a crop-circle picture of Larry King's face in a Maine hayfield. In the usual "and then ..." coda to the project, Larry King himself commented upon the artwork on his CNN talk show, undoubtedly finding a suitably colossal celebration of his enormous ego in the giant earth work.

??
And then ...

??
Bozhkov learned to fly in order to see his creation in its rightful perspective, from the air.

??
And then ...

??
Created a perceptually distorted living room couch and coffee table in the gallery so that viewers could watch the media event on TV.

??
Clearly inspired by the interactivity of Bozhkov's artworks and his own curatorial devotion to "engaging" with his own artists and the community at large, Contemporary curator Stuart Horodner has taken one of Bozhkov's preexisting projects "Fastest Guided Tours of Unfamiliar Places" and given it a local spin. In "Fastest," Bozhkov takes visitors on a whirlwind tour of their own city, offering his own out-of-towner's "authoritative" commentary on the sites they visit. For Survey, Horodner has invited a team of Atlantans — an urban planner, a copyright attorney and a Georgia State psychologist — to offer their own tours of Bozhkov's show.

??
One of the most satisfying elements to Bozhkov's work is how it engages with national identities, whether the pretzel project in Istanbul, with its layered examination of language, history and consumer habits, or the pop-culture fun of invoking the iconic Americana of Larry King, Star Wars and Wal-Mart. With his distinct accent and heavy beard and intense, dark looks, Bozhkov evokes "difference" as both a Bulgarian and an artist.

??
That sense of outsiderness adds a piquant zing to his work — especially interesting as we watch him embody the quintessential small-town, hometown corporate identity of Wal-Mart in a videotape where he greets customers entering a Skowhegan, Maine, store. Without mean-spiritedness or irony but with a refreshing spirit of goodwill, Bozhkov crafts something rich and telling about our chaotic, jumbled world, showing its fascinating, layered, prismatic dimensions, if we will only pay enough attention.

??
In Greta Pratt's related project, "Nineteen Lincolns," also on view at the Contemporary, the artist has photographed 19 different men: from a white-haired elder to a pimply faced teen, dressed as that most American of presidents.

??
What makes a Lincoln?, Pratt's project asks. Is it the thoughtful gaze? The stovepipe hat? The square beard? The ordinary Caucasian male features?

??
Like Bozhkov's work, Pratt's answer is wonderfully inclusive, suggesting that in their impersonations, whether built on physical resemblance or a "Lincolnesque" gesture, all manage a likeness on some level, achieving greatness and nobility in their own way.

??
The only disappointment in this exceptionally witty combination of artists is work by Camille Norment about the alternate perceptions created in a distorting mirror, and a photo mural of a cypress grove reflected in the water below. When the two pieces are placed together and the mirror reflects the forest, what Norment is saying about perception becomes muddled.

??
It's a minor false note in a superior show.             13023502 1264977                          Live & learn "
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Wednesday January 10, 2007 12:04 am EST
Daniel Bozhov takes a Survey of unlikely artistic ingredients | more...

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  string(2530) "Past the intimidating metal gate and high walls that give Buckhead's Galleries of Peachtree Hills its fortress-like air, down a stretch of equally imposing retail spaces and galleries, nestled in a discrete, nearly hidden corner is a surprisingly welcoming photography gallery: Davis Waldron.

??
Though relatively young to be helming their own gallery, Melanie Davis, 30, and Ashley Waldron, 28, are old enough to know what they like. Both studied photography at the University of Georgia, where they met. Their taste runs toward black-and-white photographs of objects and places imbued with an aura of timelessness. In the photographers they represent and the images they choose, the gallery owners clearly revere the eternal in a medium associated with speed and brevity. Their artists tend to cling to film and employ ancient techniques such as pinhole photography rather than explore the vanguard of digital manipulation.

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"A lot of things we're drawn to have that abstract, ethereal, grainy feel," says Waldron, a slim, dark-haired woman with a lilting, soft voice but a strong, certain vision about what makes photography work.

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While the photography currently commanding the attention of high-end art magazines and Chelsea galleries is large-format, in color and often digitally manipulated, the work at Davis Waldron comes from an entirely different place. Old-fashioned? Classic? Traditional? Maybe all of those, but certainly more inclined to look to the past and to the ancient forms of drawing and painting than what's hot on the current photography scene.

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"If there's something that really pulls them all together," suggests Waldron of the "house" style, "it's that I really appreciate the investment of a lot of time and thought in creating an image."

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The work of the 11 core artists currently on view at the gallery is best typified by David Burdeny's "Beach Pool," in shades of gray and black. The characteristically dreamy image features a water's-edge pool fading into the ocean beyond. Like so many of the images, the eye is drawn into the picture space, encouraged to roam and imagine.

??
Many of the photographs were taken in far-flung places: Cumberland Island; Rapallo, Italy; Sea Island; a French chateau. But the subject matter evokes journeys, too, in the vast spans of water, distant horizons, a wooden boardwalk or ocean pylons retreating into the distance.

??
New Work Through Feb. 15. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Davis Waldron. 678-539-6116. www.daviswaldron.com."
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Though relatively young to be helming their own gallery, Melanie Davis, 30, and Ashley Waldron, 28, are old enough to know what they like. Both studied photography at the University of Georgia, where they met. Their taste runs toward black-and-white photographs of objects and places imbued with an aura of timelessness. In the photographers they represent and the images they choose, the gallery owners clearly revere the eternal in a medium associated with speed and brevity. Their artists tend to cling to film and employ ancient techniques such as pinhole photography rather than explore the vanguard of digital manipulation.

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??
"If there's something that really pulls them all together," suggests Waldron of the "house" style, "it's that I really appreciate the investment of a lot of time and thought in creating an image."

??
The work of the 11 core artists currently on view at the gallery is best typified by David Burdeny's "Beach Pool," in shades of gray and black. The characteristically dreamy image features a water's-edge pool fading into the ocean beyond. Like so many of the images, the eye is drawn into the picture space, encouraged to roam and imagine.

??
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??
New Work ''Through Feb. 15. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Davis Waldron. 678-539-6116. [http://www.daviswaldron.com/|www.daviswaldron.com].''"
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??
Though relatively young to be helming their own gallery, Melanie Davis, 30, and Ashley Waldron, 28, are old enough to know what they like. Both studied photography at the University of Georgia, where they met. Their taste runs toward black-and-white photographs of objects and places imbued with an aura of timelessness. In the photographers they represent and the images they choose, the gallery owners clearly revere the eternal in a medium associated with speed and brevity. Their artists tend to cling to film and employ ancient techniques such as pinhole photography rather than explore the vanguard of digital manipulation.

??
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??
While the photography currently commanding the attention of high-end art magazines and Chelsea galleries is large-format, in color and often digitally manipulated, the work at Davis Waldron comes from an entirely different place. Old-fashioned? Classic? Traditional? Maybe all of those, but certainly more inclined to look to the past and to the ancient forms of drawing and painting than what's hot on the current photography scene.

??
"If there's something that really pulls them all together," suggests Waldron of the "house" style, "it's that I really appreciate the investment of a lot of time and thought in creating an image."

??
The work of the 11 core artists currently on view at the gallery is best typified by David Burdeny's "Beach Pool," in shades of gray and black. The characteristically dreamy image features a water's-edge pool fading into the ocean beyond. Like so many of the images, the eye is drawn into the picture space, encouraged to roam and imagine.

??
Many of the photographs were taken in far-flung places: Cumberland Island; Rapallo, Italy; Sea Island; a French chateau. But the subject matter evokes journeys, too, in the vast spans of water, distant horizons, a wooden boardwalk or ocean pylons retreating into the distance.

??
New Work Through Feb. 15. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Davis Waldron. 678-539-6116. www.daviswaldron.com.             13023470 1264918                          A moment in time "
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Wednesday January 10, 2007 12:04 am EST
New Work at Davis Waldron | more...
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  string(3768) "Though we like to think perversity is like a snowball, growing as it rolls down history's mountaintop, when it comes to excess and outrage, the ancients often have us beat.

??
At the very least, the artworks in Domains of Wonder: Selected Masterworks of Indian Painting show that, in depicting Ray Harryhausen-esque, three-headed, pea-green demons; obliging courtesans; and blood-spilling tiger hunts, there truly is such a thing as finesse. Beheadings and adultery have rarely been as beautifully rendered as they are in this exquisite survey of transportive images from the 14th to the 19th century on view in this Michael C. Carlos Museum show.

??
Extremes of religious devotion and sexual desire, gory beheadings and beatific calm define the panoply of emotions in Domains of Wonder, a nationally touring exhibition most recently docked at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. Sexual jealousy and ecstasy make the work spicier than any dime-store pulp novel and its violence undeniably more artful than the latest Hostel splatter pic. And these sensual extremes are amazingly egalitarian — experienced by hot-blooded mortals and gods like the Smurf-blue playa Krishna alike.

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In dazzling, hallucinogenic colors, these watercolors tackle large-scale emotions in the most impossibly meticulous, diminutive form where you can observe the individual fronds on a fern the size of a quarter or a necklace with pearls as minute as sugar crystals. Like ships in a bottle, these paintings of Indian deities, animals, kings and Hindu tales done by Indian artists for royal patrons or religious texts compress the grand into an absurdly tiny space. The works induce a kind of intellectual vertigo at the juxtaposition of the miniature and the epic.

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"Do you see how old they are?" an education-bent mother goads her tween son. But the kid can barely contain himself, hustling his mother to another room to check out a really "scary one."

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Figures range from the outrageously stylized — with the blinding-white, almond-shaped eyes of a Matt Groening cartoon — to figures so carefully rendered they appear photographic.

??
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??
An astounding multiplicity of ideas and actions can often be encapsulated in a single painting. "A royal tiger hunt" circa 1749 tells the tale of a tiger's capture, from stalking to killing to transportation of its spent carcass through 16 individual vignettes, an abundant, all-at-once Bollywood storytelling style very different from the solitary, static view of Western oil painting.

??
Despite some often confoundingly dim lighting in an exhibition that already courts eye strain, Domains is a treasure trove of the sublime and the quite simply bizarre, such as the opening image in the show, weirder than any Pink Floyd album cover. In the 1720 "Fabled beasts in a landscape," five elephants with "wings" like fragile leaves and strangely humanoid, flesh-colored features cavort amid a soothing, bosomy green landscape. Accompanying text describes an Indian belief that these winged beasts, "gaja-simba," when seen in dreams "augur success in all things undertaken."

??
There are 126 paintings in the exhibition but between the wall text and the lace-work intricate scenes, it would be easy to spend an entire afternoon in the show and feel as if you'd just scratched the surface. When so much in the world feels impermanent, it is often the most soothing antidote to enter the dark, quiet envelope of the Carlos galleries and see that some things last."
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  string(3769) "Though we like to think perversity is like a snowball, growing as it rolls down history's mountaintop, when it comes to excess and outrage, the ancients often have us beat.

??
At the very least, the artworks in ''Domains of Wonder: Selected Masterworks of Indian Painting'' show that, in depicting Ray Harryhausen-esque, three-headed, pea-green demons; obliging courtesans; and blood-spilling tiger hunts, there truly is such a thing as finesse. Beheadings and adultery have rarely been as beautifully rendered as they are in this exquisite survey of transportive images from the 14th to the 19th century on view in this Michael C. Carlos Museum show.

??
Extremes of religious devotion and sexual desire, gory beheadings and beatific calm define the panoply of emotions in ''Domains of Wonder'', a nationally touring exhibition most recently docked at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. Sexual jealousy and ecstasy make the work spicier than any dime-store pulp novel and its violence undeniably more artful than the latest ''Hostel'' splatter pic. And these sensual extremes are amazingly egalitarian -- experienced by hot-blooded mortals and gods like the Smurf-blue playa Krishna alike.

??
In dazzling, hallucinogenic colors, these watercolors tackle large-scale emotions in the most impossibly meticulous, diminutive form where you can observe the individual fronds on a fern the size of a quarter or a necklace with pearls as minute as sugar crystals. Like ships in a bottle, these paintings of Indian deities, animals, kings and Hindu tales done by Indian artists for royal patrons or religious texts compress the grand into an absurdly tiny space. The works induce a kind of intellectual vertigo at the juxtaposition of the miniature and the epic.

??
"Do you see how old they are?" an education-bent mother goads her tween son. But the kid can barely contain himself, hustling his mother to another room to check out a really "scary one."

??
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??
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??
An astounding multiplicity of ideas and actions can often be encapsulated in a single painting. "A royal tiger hunt" circa 1749 tells the tale of a tiger's capture, from stalking to killing to transportation of its spent carcass through 16 individual vignettes, an abundant, all-at-once Bollywood storytelling style very different from the solitary, static view of Western oil painting.

??
Despite some often confoundingly dim lighting in an exhibition that already courts eye strain, ''Domains'' is a treasure trove of the sublime and the quite simply bizarre, such as the opening image in the show, weirder than any Pink Floyd album cover. In the 1720 "Fabled beasts in a landscape," five elephants with "wings" like fragile leaves and strangely humanoid, flesh-colored features cavort amid a soothing, bosomy green landscape. Accompanying text describes an Indian belief that these winged beasts, "gaja-simba," when seen in dreams "augur success in all things undertaken."

??
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  string(3994) "    Domains of Wonder shows the finesse of Indian art   2007-01-03T05:04:00+00:00 Gods and monsters   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2007-01-03T05:04:00+00:00  Though we like to think perversity is like a snowball, growing as it rolls down history's mountaintop, when it comes to excess and outrage, the ancients often have us beat.

??
At the very least, the artworks in Domains of Wonder: Selected Masterworks of Indian Painting show that, in depicting Ray Harryhausen-esque, three-headed, pea-green demons; obliging courtesans; and blood-spilling tiger hunts, there truly is such a thing as finesse. Beheadings and adultery have rarely been as beautifully rendered as they are in this exquisite survey of transportive images from the 14th to the 19th century on view in this Michael C. Carlos Museum show.

??
Extremes of religious devotion and sexual desire, gory beheadings and beatific calm define the panoply of emotions in Domains of Wonder, a nationally touring exhibition most recently docked at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. Sexual jealousy and ecstasy make the work spicier than any dime-store pulp novel and its violence undeniably more artful than the latest Hostel splatter pic. And these sensual extremes are amazingly egalitarian — experienced by hot-blooded mortals and gods like the Smurf-blue playa Krishna alike.

??
In dazzling, hallucinogenic colors, these watercolors tackle large-scale emotions in the most impossibly meticulous, diminutive form where you can observe the individual fronds on a fern the size of a quarter or a necklace with pearls as minute as sugar crystals. Like ships in a bottle, these paintings of Indian deities, animals, kings and Hindu tales done by Indian artists for royal patrons or religious texts compress the grand into an absurdly tiny space. The works induce a kind of intellectual vertigo at the juxtaposition of the miniature and the epic.

??
"Do you see how old they are?" an education-bent mother goads her tween son. But the kid can barely contain himself, hustling his mother to another room to check out a really "scary one."

??
Figures range from the outrageously stylized — with the blinding-white, almond-shaped eyes of a Matt Groening cartoon — to figures so carefully rendered they appear photographic.

??
The approach to storytelling is mind-blowing. The artists adopt a variety of approaches in their paintings on swaths of cloth or on skinny palm leaves as narrow as shoehorns. One 14th-century work is nearly tiny enough to wrap around a square of Bazooka chewing gum.

??
An astounding multiplicity of ideas and actions can often be encapsulated in a single painting. "A royal tiger hunt" circa 1749 tells the tale of a tiger's capture, from stalking to killing to transportation of its spent carcass through 16 individual vignettes, an abundant, all-at-once Bollywood storytelling style very different from the solitary, static view of Western oil painting.

??
Despite some often confoundingly dim lighting in an exhibition that already courts eye strain, Domains is a treasure trove of the sublime and the quite simply bizarre, such as the opening image in the show, weirder than any Pink Floyd album cover. In the 1720 "Fabled beasts in a landscape," five elephants with "wings" like fragile leaves and strangely humanoid, flesh-colored features cavort amid a soothing, bosomy green landscape. Accompanying text describes an Indian belief that these winged beasts, "gaja-simba," when seen in dreams "augur success in all things undertaken."

??
There are 126 paintings in the exhibition but between the wall text and the lace-work intricate scenes, it would be easy to spend an entire afternoon in the show and feel as if you'd just scratched the surface. When so much in the world feels impermanent, it is often the most soothing antidote to enter the dark, quiet envelope of the Carlos galleries and see that some things last.             13023424 1264790                          Gods and monsters "
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Wednesday January 3, 2007 12:04 am EST
Domains of Wonder shows the finesse of Indian art | more...
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  string(2306) "If you are going to make a beeline for any piece in Found and Folded at Get This! Gallery, then move immediately to the back of the railroad flat space. Tucked in a corner is the conceptual centerpiece in Nate Moore's intriguing second solo exhibition.

??
The work is untitled, but the meaning is clear.

??
Moore has assembled a swarm of origami locusts on the gallery wall and ceiling that explode and splatter outward like some special effect from a Spielberg film. On a pedestal below the swarm is an opened Bible from which a chunk has been cut. The insects are crafted from those missing pages, sent out like agents of apocalyptic reckoning. Religion and aircraft coalesce into an eerie, minimalist evocation of end times in Found and Folded.

??
Moore is a self-taught artist whose avocation is origami, or more precisely, found-object paper constructions crafted from an array of old science textbooks and slick magazines found at thrift stores and pillaged in regular Dumpster dives.

??
As much as the biblical comeuppance hinted at in that swarm of cicadas, Moore's origami jet planes suggest a cultural blitzkrieg heading on a military mission toward foreign lands. In Found and Folded, our belief system is locked and loaded, arranged like a Blue Angels configuration on a pencil grid as it heads off into the wild blue yonder.

??
In his first show at Get This! Gallery, Moore dipped a toe into the juxtaposition of nature and humanity. He continues the notion with the two central motifs in Found and Folded: jet planes and cicadas. As icons of the human and the natural reduced to intricately folded origami sculpture, they prove especially interesting. The jets are pointed and aggressive, their very design suggesting speed and power. And the cicadas, with their wings splayed behind them, suggest natural design built more for survival than domination. Though his ideas could use some tightening up, and a greater connection made between the source material Moore chooses and the objects he creates, Moore's show signals a promising direction in conveying a menacing, apocalyptic strain beneath the most unthreatening and delicate of forms.

??
Found and Folded: Nate Moore. Through Jan. 27. Thurs.-Sat., 12-5 p.m. Get This! Gallery, 322 Peters St. 678-596-4451. www.getthisgallery.com."
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The work is untitled, but the meaning is clear.

??
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??
Moore is a self-taught artist whose avocation is origami, or more precisely, found-object paper constructions crafted from an array of old science textbooks and slick magazines found at thrift stores and pillaged in regular Dumpster dives.

??
As much as the biblical comeuppance hinted at in that swarm of cicadas, Moore's origami jet planes suggest a cultural blitzkrieg heading on a military mission toward foreign lands. In ''Found and Folded'', our belief system is locked and loaded, arranged like a Blue Angels configuration on a pencil grid as it heads off into the wild blue yonder.

??
In his first show at Get This! Gallery, Moore dipped a toe into the juxtaposition of nature and humanity. He continues the notion with the two central motifs in ''Found and Folded'': jet planes and cicadas. As icons of the human and the natural reduced to intricately folded origami sculpture, they prove especially interesting. The jets are pointed and aggressive, their very design suggesting speed and power. And the cicadas, with their wings splayed behind them, suggest natural design built more for survival than domination. Though his ideas could use some tightening up, and a greater connection made between the source material Moore chooses and the objects he creates, Moore's show signals a promising direction in conveying a menacing, apocalyptic strain beneath the most unthreatening and delicate of forms.

??
Found and Folded: Nate Moore. ''Through Jan. 27. Thurs.-Sat., 12-5 p.m. Get This! Gallery, 322 Peters St. 678-596-4451. [http://www.getthisgallery.com/|www.getthisgallery.com]''."
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??
The work is untitled, but the meaning is clear.

??
Moore has assembled a swarm of origami locusts on the gallery wall and ceiling that explode and splatter outward like some special effect from a Spielberg film. On a pedestal below the swarm is an opened Bible from which a chunk has been cut. The insects are crafted from those missing pages, sent out like agents of apocalyptic reckoning. Religion and aircraft coalesce into an eerie, minimalist evocation of end times in Found and Folded.

??
Moore is a self-taught artist whose avocation is origami, or more precisely, found-object paper constructions crafted from an array of old science textbooks and slick magazines found at thrift stores and pillaged in regular Dumpster dives.

??
As much as the biblical comeuppance hinted at in that swarm of cicadas, Moore's origami jet planes suggest a cultural blitzkrieg heading on a military mission toward foreign lands. In Found and Folded, our belief system is locked and loaded, arranged like a Blue Angels configuration on a pencil grid as it heads off into the wild blue yonder.

??
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??
Found and Folded: Nate Moore. Through Jan. 27. Thurs.-Sat., 12-5 p.m. Get This! Gallery, 322 Peters St. 678-596-4451. www.getthisgallery.com.             13023425 1264792                          Looks good on paper "
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Wednesday January 3, 2007 12:04 am EST
Found and Folded at Get This! Gallery | more...
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  string(4123) "The national basement that Northerners fear to enter, home to various and sundry yokels, runaway brides and religious zealots, the South only appears to interest the national press when someone screws up. The photographer's — and to some extent the curator's — job is to defy such easy stereotypes and illuminate where others simplify; to poke and prod the unspoken and overlooked nooks and crannies. And a curator of a show of Southern artists carries the additional burden of finding work that expands rather than reaffirms notions of the South.

??
So what, exactly, does a British-born, previously Los Angeles-based High Museum of Art curator with a specialty in the Victorian photographer Julia Margaret Cameron see when he thinks about the South?

??
Julian Cox, the photography curator in question, sees a South that will prove in some aspects very familiar to locals: a South defined by flux and resistance to fixed ideas but also by the themes that continue to demarcate the region, including history and race and idiosyncratic personalities.

??
Out of the South at the Atlanta Photography Group Gallery features six artists whose work has been selected by Cox and who traffic in a South both familiar and below the radar. Atlantans who are residents of this strange pioneer divide called "the New South" will find special resonance in Bill Boling's work. Boling has photographed various sites on the proposed Beltline route, which will one day lasso the city, but are for now abandoned, marginal parcels of undeveloped land. In doing so, he has shown that rusted-out region lurking at the margins of this go-go-go city.

??
Boling's work is some of the strongest in the show. Rather than finding some expected contrast between neglect and possibility, squalor and development, what Boling finds is a zone outside of city sanctification where human beings have made their mark in snarky graffiti or in a homemade shrine to a dead child.

??
It is Boling's assertion that a city's identity exists in these small, fragmentary glimpses of human presence amid what we would otherwise write off as neglect and squalor.

??
Boling's work captures the peculiarity of always on-the-cusp Atlanta, but also a larger character of the South, a place of improvised memorials and a people who can sit back to contemplate nature in any setting.

??
Another artist who also honors individual voices amid the fracas is Chandler Leathers, who documents the painfully green soldiers often overlooked in the South's patriotic bluster. Leathers' haunting portraits of impossibly wide-eyed University of Georgia ROTC members capture the youth and vulnerability of America's front line in the war on terror.

??
Another demonstration of the gender equity Cox has shown in the past is the fact that there are as many female voices as male ones in Out of the South. Andrea Brown creates wispy, lyrical, but often ethereal-enough-to-blow-away black-and-white photographs of pretty girls and nature tableaux that hark back to the stage-crafted romanticism of Julia Margaret Cameron.

??
Elona Miller-Long and Megan Ledbetter are essentially documentarians, providing a small keyhole into their subjects' personalities that almost requires a larger scope to convey what, exactly, these photographers are striving for. Miller-Long documents an interracial family and Ledbetter an array of unsettled, contrary-looking Tennessee teenagers whose feminist coffee mugs, mohawk hairdos and swipes of blue eye shadow below sulking eyes attest to something other than compliant Southern youth.

??
The South is part of the content, but not the defining feature of all the photographers in Out of the South, save one. In black-and-white photography, Don Dudenbostel charts a South that, of all the work in Out of the South, probably most inflames the national imagination. There are ramshackle old-timey country stores, Klansmen and scruffy Appalachian children. It's a view of Dixie, in other words, that people from Jersey who have never ventured farther south than Newark imagine, where you don't want your car to break down after dark."
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  string(4129) "The national basement that Northerners fear to enter, home to various and sundry yokels, runaway brides and religious zealots, the South only appears to interest the national press when someone screws up. The photographer's -- and to some extent the curator's -- job is to defy such easy stereotypes and illuminate where others simplify; to poke and prod the unspoken and overlooked nooks and crannies. And a curator of a show of Southern artists carries the additional burden of finding work that expands rather than reaffirms notions of the South.

??
So what, exactly, does a British-born, previously Los Angeles-based High Museum of Art curator with a specialty in the Victorian photographer Julia Margaret Cameron see when he thinks about the South?

??
Julian Cox, the photography curator in question, sees a South that will prove in some aspects very familiar to locals: a South defined by flux and resistance to fixed ideas but also by the themes that continue to demarcate the region, including history and race and idiosyncratic personalities.

??
''Out of the South'' at the Atlanta Photography Group Gallery features six artists whose work has been selected by Cox and who traffic in a South both familiar and below the radar. Atlantans who are residents of this strange pioneer divide called "the New South" will find special resonance in Bill Boling's work. Boling has photographed various sites on the proposed Beltline route, which will one day lasso the city, but are for now abandoned, marginal parcels of undeveloped land. In doing so, he has shown that rusted-out region lurking at the margins of this go-go-go city.

??
Boling's work is some of the strongest in the show. Rather than finding some expected contrast between neglect and possibility, squalor and development, what Boling finds is a zone outside of city sanctification where human beings have made their mark in snarky graffiti or in a homemade shrine to a dead child.

??
It is Boling's assertion that a city's identity exists in these small, fragmentary glimpses of human presence amid what we would otherwise write off as neglect and squalor.

??
Boling's work captures the peculiarity of always on-the-cusp Atlanta, but also a larger character of the South, a place of improvised memorials and a people who can sit back to contemplate nature in any setting.

??
Another artist who also honors individual voices amid the fracas is Chandler Leathers, who documents the painfully green soldiers often overlooked in the South's patriotic bluster. Leathers' haunting portraits of impossibly wide-eyed University of Georgia ROTC members capture the youth and vulnerability of America's front line in the war on terror.

??
Another demonstration of the gender equity Cox has shown in the past is the fact that there are as many female voices as male ones in ''Out of the South''. Andrea Brown creates wispy, lyrical, but often ethereal-enough-to-blow-away black-and-white photographs of pretty girls and nature tableaux that hark back to the stage-crafted romanticism of Julia Margaret Cameron.

??
Elona Miller-Long and Megan Ledbetter are essentially documentarians, providing a small keyhole into their subjects' personalities that almost requires a larger scope to convey what, exactly, these photographers are striving for. Miller-Long documents an interracial family and Ledbetter an array of unsettled, contrary-looking Tennessee teenagers whose feminist coffee mugs, mohawk hairdos and swipes of blue eye shadow below sulking eyes attest to something other than compliant Southern youth.

??
The South is part of the content, but not the defining feature of all the photographers in ''Out of the South'', save one. In black-and-white photography, Don Dudenbostel charts a South that, of all the work in ''Out of the South,'' probably most inflames the national imagination. There are ramshackle old-timey country stores, Klansmen and scruffy Appalachian children. It's a view of Dixie, in other words, that people from Jersey who have never ventured farther south than Newark imagine, where you don't want your car to break down after dark."
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  string(4337) "    Out of the South offers a fresh perspective   2006-12-27T05:04:00+00:00 Below the line   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2006-12-27T05:04:00+00:00  The national basement that Northerners fear to enter, home to various and sundry yokels, runaway brides and religious zealots, the South only appears to interest the national press when someone screws up. The photographer's — and to some extent the curator's — job is to defy such easy stereotypes and illuminate where others simplify; to poke and prod the unspoken and overlooked nooks and crannies. And a curator of a show of Southern artists carries the additional burden of finding work that expands rather than reaffirms notions of the South.

??
So what, exactly, does a British-born, previously Los Angeles-based High Museum of Art curator with a specialty in the Victorian photographer Julia Margaret Cameron see when he thinks about the South?

??
Julian Cox, the photography curator in question, sees a South that will prove in some aspects very familiar to locals: a South defined by flux and resistance to fixed ideas but also by the themes that continue to demarcate the region, including history and race and idiosyncratic personalities.

??
Out of the South at the Atlanta Photography Group Gallery features six artists whose work has been selected by Cox and who traffic in a South both familiar and below the radar. Atlantans who are residents of this strange pioneer divide called "the New South" will find special resonance in Bill Boling's work. Boling has photographed various sites on the proposed Beltline route, which will one day lasso the city, but are for now abandoned, marginal parcels of undeveloped land. In doing so, he has shown that rusted-out region lurking at the margins of this go-go-go city.

??
Boling's work is some of the strongest in the show. Rather than finding some expected contrast between neglect and possibility, squalor and development, what Boling finds is a zone outside of city sanctification where human beings have made their mark in snarky graffiti or in a homemade shrine to a dead child.

??
It is Boling's assertion that a city's identity exists in these small, fragmentary glimpses of human presence amid what we would otherwise write off as neglect and squalor.

??
Boling's work captures the peculiarity of always on-the-cusp Atlanta, but also a larger character of the South, a place of improvised memorials and a people who can sit back to contemplate nature in any setting.

??
Another artist who also honors individual voices amid the fracas is Chandler Leathers, who documents the painfully green soldiers often overlooked in the South's patriotic bluster. Leathers' haunting portraits of impossibly wide-eyed University of Georgia ROTC members capture the youth and vulnerability of America's front line in the war on terror.

??
Another demonstration of the gender equity Cox has shown in the past is the fact that there are as many female voices as male ones in Out of the South. Andrea Brown creates wispy, lyrical, but often ethereal-enough-to-blow-away black-and-white photographs of pretty girls and nature tableaux that hark back to the stage-crafted romanticism of Julia Margaret Cameron.

??
Elona Miller-Long and Megan Ledbetter are essentially documentarians, providing a small keyhole into their subjects' personalities that almost requires a larger scope to convey what, exactly, these photographers are striving for. Miller-Long documents an interracial family and Ledbetter an array of unsettled, contrary-looking Tennessee teenagers whose feminist coffee mugs, mohawk hairdos and swipes of blue eye shadow below sulking eyes attest to something other than compliant Southern youth.

??
The South is part of the content, but not the defining feature of all the photographers in Out of the South, save one. In black-and-white photography, Don Dudenbostel charts a South that, of all the work in Out of the South, probably most inflames the national imagination. There are ramshackle old-timey country stores, Klansmen and scruffy Appalachian children. It's a view of Dixie, in other words, that people from Jersey who have never ventured farther south than Newark imagine, where you don't want your car to break down after dark.             13023371 1264667                          Below the line "
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Article

Wednesday December 27, 2006 12:04 am EST
Out of the South offers a fresh perspective | more...
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  string(5145) "Some photographers are on an obsessive quest. William Christenberry with his Alabama barbecue restaurants and juke joints, O. Winston Link with his trains, and Jock Sturges with his naked adolescent girls.

??
And some artists are more visually promiscuous.

??
Jason Fulford is one of the latter artists, on the prowl and eyes wide open as he gallivants through lands as diverse as South Dakota, Marietta, China, Calcutta, Budapest and Amsterdam looking for poetic juxtapositions and oddball moments. Typically Fulfordian is an image from 1999, simply titled "Budapest." It's a photograph of four working men on a busy street looking down a hole in the sidewalk, as if one has discovered the hallway to China and called the others around for a gander.

??
Fulford, 33, is clean-cut in appearance, but in sensibility he is kooky, inventive, peripatetic and relentlessly engaged. He is as excited talking about polyphonic Bach fugues as he is about his public art project and book Paper Placemats, in which a collection of artist- and writer-embellished place mats could be ripped out and used at various restaurants across the country.

??
Call it tableware by the people, for the people.

??
Fulford's free-range fascination is the charming oddity of ordinary life and people. It is an aesthetic of chance and serendipity and a visually democratic economy in which street signs and highways and scaffolding and boulders all merit equal importance. Like the observational, slacker cinema of Richard Linklater or the trenchant, poignant photography of William Eggleston, Fulford's haunt is an ordinary life made less ordinary via the camera's attention.

??
In Fulford's current body of work on view at Marcia Wood Gallery, there are photographs of a gang of ants feasting on a tortilla chip, a framed photograph of an über-normal redheaded kid placed on a table and stacks of utilitarian office chairs.

??
Such photographic koans are the fascination of this New York City- and Scranton, Pa.-based photographer and gadabout whose photographs have also accompanied articles in Martha Stewart Living and the New York Times Magazine. Fulford's photographs can also be seen on a variety of book covers by authors from Don DeLillo to Chuck Klosterman on the menswear designer Jack Spade's sock labels, promoting the Chinese goth band Quaisimodo, and on Volvo print ads.

??
Fulford's work is quirky enough to appeal to his commercial clients looking to stand out from the pack but poetic enough to hold up under scrutiny as more than a one-note joke. He's interested in life in context, in how an image of a despairingly banal motel room or an under-construction mansion with a backyard view of two spewing nuclear reactors can highlight something about the nature of the world we live in; the poignancy of bad design, the wishful thinking and utter folly that defines human nature, and the various surreal blockages to our progress through life.

??
Pop culture has given us the kitten clinging to a branch: "Hang In There, It's Almost Friday." Fulford gives us his own spin on painful whimsy in an image of three doors and knobs stacked up in a row also suggesting the Herculean ordeals life can often throw at you on a daily basis. There is a sense of amused fatalism to his work expressed in the quote that opens Fulford's book of photographs, Crushed. It's from Don DeLillo's fictional football coach in End Zone, who says "It's only a game, but it's the only game."

??
For Fulford it is "the simultaneous feeling of sad and funny" that defines his work. He says that his influences are "hardly ever photographic," and tend to draw inspiration more from writers such as Danish philosopher Kierkegaard and French novelist Alain Robbe-Grillet.

??
In addition to his many hats, Fulford also wears the hat of book publisher. Along with partner Leanne Shapton, Fulford operates nonprofit publishing house J&L Books, which has published a variety of works from visual artists, writers and illustrators.

??
Fulford's exhibition at Marcia Wood Gallery is a typically off-kilter hybrid of Fulford's most recent photographs and the tangential interests of this far-ranging artist/graphic designer/publisher.

??
Also featured in the show is a kind of reading room in the back gallery featuring the J&L titles, which although thematically diverse, all help flesh out the peculiar Fulfordian sensibility.

??
Polymorphous curiosity and bizarre humor provide the leitmotif of both Fulford's work and the work of his team of artists. As an expression of that curiosity, a library-style trolley in a corner of the gallery features a grouping of wooden "books" that have been selected by the artists in his group show as favorites.

??
The vibe is, "Sit down, stay awhile." Leaf through the real books and laugh at the wooden ones, look at the art by J&L artists such as Harrell Fletcher, Mike Slack and Gus Powell. And when you leave the gallery, on your drive through Castleberry Hill observe the homeless man with the white handlebar mustache and cowboy hat seated outside a pawnshop and be amused and heartbroken by the world all over again."
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  string(5153) "Some photographers are on an obsessive quest. William Christenberry with his Alabama barbecue restaurants and juke joints, O. Winston Link with his trains, and Jock Sturges with his naked adolescent girls.

??
And some artists are more visually promiscuous.

??
Jason Fulford is one of the latter artists, on the prowl and eyes wide open as he gallivants through lands as diverse as South Dakota, Marietta, China, Calcutta, Budapest and Amsterdam looking for poetic juxtapositions and oddball moments. Typically Fulfordian is an image from 1999, simply titled "Budapest." It's a photograph of four working men on a busy street looking down a hole in the sidewalk, as if one has discovered the hallway to China and called the others around for a gander.

??
Fulford, 33, is clean-cut in appearance, but in sensibility he is kooky, inventive, peripatetic and relentlessly engaged. He is as excited talking about polyphonic Bach fugues as he is about his public art project and book ''Paper Placemats'', in which a collection of artist- and writer-embellished place mats could be ripped out and used at various restaurants across the country.

??
Call it tableware by the people, for the people.

??
Fulford's free-range fascination is the charming oddity of ordinary life and people. It is an aesthetic of chance and serendipity and a visually democratic economy in which street signs and highways and scaffolding and boulders all merit equal importance. Like the observational, slacker cinema of Richard Linklater or the trenchant, poignant photography of William Eggleston, Fulford's haunt is an ordinary life made less ordinary via the camera's attention.

??
In Fulford's current body of work on view at Marcia Wood Gallery, there are photographs of a gang of ants feasting on a tortilla chip, a framed photograph of an über-normal redheaded kid placed on a table and stacks of utilitarian office chairs.

??
Such photographic koans are the fascination of this New York City- and Scranton, Pa.-based photographer and gadabout whose photographs have also accompanied articles in ''Martha Stewart Living'' and the ''New York Times Magazine''. Fulford's photographs can also be seen on a variety of book covers by authors from Don DeLillo to Chuck Klosterman on the menswear designer Jack Spade's sock labels, promoting the Chinese goth band Quaisimodo, and on Volvo print ads.

??
Fulford's work is quirky enough to appeal to his commercial clients looking to stand out from the pack but poetic enough to hold up under scrutiny as more than a one-note joke. He's interested in life in context, in how an image of a despairingly banal motel room or an under-construction mansion with a backyard view of two spewing nuclear reactors can highlight something about the nature of the world we live in; the poignancy of bad design, the wishful thinking and utter folly that defines human nature, and the various surreal blockages to our progress through life.

??
Pop culture has given us the kitten clinging to a branch: "Hang In There, It's Almost Friday." Fulford gives us his own spin on painful whimsy in an image of three doors and knobs stacked up in a row also suggesting the Herculean ordeals life can often throw at you on a daily basis. There is a sense of amused fatalism to his work expressed in the quote that opens Fulford's book of photographs, ''Crushed''. It's from Don DeLillo's fictional football coach in ''End Zone'', who says "It's only a game, but it's the only game."

??
For Fulford it is "the simultaneous feeling of sad and funny" that defines his work. He says that his influences are "hardly ever photographic," and tend to draw inspiration more from writers such as Danish philosopher Kierkegaard and French novelist Alain Robbe-Grillet.

??
In addition to his many hats, Fulford also wears the hat of book publisher. Along with partner Leanne Shapton, Fulford operates nonprofit publishing house J&L Books, which has published a variety of works from visual artists, writers and illustrators.

??
Fulford's exhibition at Marcia Wood Gallery is a typically off-kilter hybrid of Fulford's most recent photographs and the tangential interests of this far-ranging artist/graphic designer/publisher.

??
Also featured in the show is a kind of reading room in the back gallery featuring the J&L titles, which although thematically diverse, all help flesh out the peculiar Fulfordian sensibility.

??
Polymorphous curiosity and bizarre humor provide the leitmotif of both Fulford's work and the work of his team of artists. As an expression of that curiosity, a library-style trolley in a corner of the gallery features a grouping of wooden "books" that have been selected by the artists in his group show as favorites.

??
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??
And some artists are more visually promiscuous.

??
Jason Fulford is one of the latter artists, on the prowl and eyes wide open as he gallivants through lands as diverse as South Dakota, Marietta, China, Calcutta, Budapest and Amsterdam looking for poetic juxtapositions and oddball moments. Typically Fulfordian is an image from 1999, simply titled "Budapest." It's a photograph of four working men on a busy street looking down a hole in the sidewalk, as if one has discovered the hallway to China and called the others around for a gander.

??
Fulford, 33, is clean-cut in appearance, but in sensibility he is kooky, inventive, peripatetic and relentlessly engaged. He is as excited talking about polyphonic Bach fugues as he is about his public art project and book Paper Placemats, in which a collection of artist- and writer-embellished place mats could be ripped out and used at various restaurants across the country.

??
Call it tableware by the people, for the people.

??
Fulford's free-range fascination is the charming oddity of ordinary life and people. It is an aesthetic of chance and serendipity and a visually democratic economy in which street signs and highways and scaffolding and boulders all merit equal importance. Like the observational, slacker cinema of Richard Linklater or the trenchant, poignant photography of William Eggleston, Fulford's haunt is an ordinary life made less ordinary via the camera's attention.

??
In Fulford's current body of work on view at Marcia Wood Gallery, there are photographs of a gang of ants feasting on a tortilla chip, a framed photograph of an über-normal redheaded kid placed on a table and stacks of utilitarian office chairs.

??
Such photographic koans are the fascination of this New York City- and Scranton, Pa.-based photographer and gadabout whose photographs have also accompanied articles in Martha Stewart Living and the New York Times Magazine. Fulford's photographs can also be seen on a variety of book covers by authors from Don DeLillo to Chuck Klosterman on the menswear designer Jack Spade's sock labels, promoting the Chinese goth band Quaisimodo, and on Volvo print ads.

??
Fulford's work is quirky enough to appeal to his commercial clients looking to stand out from the pack but poetic enough to hold up under scrutiny as more than a one-note joke. He's interested in life in context, in how an image of a despairingly banal motel room or an under-construction mansion with a backyard view of two spewing nuclear reactors can highlight something about the nature of the world we live in; the poignancy of bad design, the wishful thinking and utter folly that defines human nature, and the various surreal blockages to our progress through life.

??
Pop culture has given us the kitten clinging to a branch: "Hang In There, It's Almost Friday." Fulford gives us his own spin on painful whimsy in an image of three doors and knobs stacked up in a row also suggesting the Herculean ordeals life can often throw at you on a daily basis. There is a sense of amused fatalism to his work expressed in the quote that opens Fulford's book of photographs, Crushed. It's from Don DeLillo's fictional football coach in End Zone, who says "It's only a game, but it's the only game."

??
For Fulford it is "the simultaneous feeling of sad and funny" that defines his work. He says that his influences are "hardly ever photographic," and tend to draw inspiration more from writers such as Danish philosopher Kierkegaard and French novelist Alain Robbe-Grillet.

??
In addition to his many hats, Fulford also wears the hat of book publisher. Along with partner Leanne Shapton, Fulford operates nonprofit publishing house J&L Books, which has published a variety of works from visual artists, writers and illustrators.

??
Fulford's exhibition at Marcia Wood Gallery is a typically off-kilter hybrid of Fulford's most recent photographs and the tangential interests of this far-ranging artist/graphic designer/publisher.

??
Also featured in the show is a kind of reading room in the back gallery featuring the J&L titles, which although thematically diverse, all help flesh out the peculiar Fulfordian sensibility.

??
Polymorphous curiosity and bizarre humor provide the leitmotif of both Fulford's work and the work of his team of artists. As an expression of that curiosity, a library-style trolley in a corner of the gallery features a grouping of wooden "books" that have been selected by the artists in his group show as favorites.

??
The vibe is, "Sit down, stay awhile." Leaf through the real books and laugh at the wooden ones, look at the art by J&L artists such as Harrell Fletcher, Mike Slack and Gus Powell. And when you leave the gallery, on your drive through Castleberry Hill observe the homeless man with the white handlebar mustache and cowboy hat seated outside a pawnshop and be amused and heartbroken by the world all over again.             13023322 1264546                          A life less ordinary "
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Wednesday December 20, 2006 12:04 am EST
Photographer Jason Fulford's aesthetic is one of chance and serendipity | more...
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  string(4167) "Along with bowling, drive-ins, Vegas and roller derby, tiki culture is one of those old-school cultural phenomena that make hipsters wet themselves with ironic glee. What is it about the tiki? Maybe in our own PC and self-aware age, the idea of our ancestors captivated by the exotic thrills of Polynesian culture just tickles our funny bone.

??
Beginning in the 1930s with the debut of Hollywood's tiki-themed Don the Beachcomber restaurant and then Trader Vic's, tiki American-style was a convergence of stiff rum drinks such as the tiki-quintessential mai tai, the exotica strains of Martin Denny, kitschy decor and, voila!, superficial access to the "Other" the middle-class seems to continually crave. The trend crested in the 1950s following the return of soldiers from World War II whose travels in the South Pacific trickled down to the culture at large and with the publication of James Michener's Tales of the South Pacific in 1948, the Broadway musical version of Michener's book, South Pacific and Hawaii's entrance as the 50th state of the Union in 1959.

??
The whole trend died out in the '70s (though typically late-blooming Atlanta's Trader Vic's didn't open until 1976), only to be resurrected by "modern primitive" Gen X hipsters in the 1990s who also felt their ancestors' urge for cave-like watering holes and firewater served with paper umbrellas in hollowed-out coconuts.

??
Campy, yes, but there is an aesthetic charm to tiki, too — those crazy totem-pole-like carved heads, the whole thatched-roof hut and Oceania-chic mutation of the mildly ethnic remains an appealing, fantastic break from the mundane.

??
Wherever tiki love — old-style or newfangled — comes from, it is here to stay and has found a new staging ground for its assault on our senses at Alcove Gallery. Owner Chris Warner mounts his exhibitions more like a consummate party boy than a conventional gallery director, bringing in bands and hanging art on every available surface like wallpaper. For his Holiday Tiki Show, Warner has brought the tropical indoors, with grass fronds ornamenting the walls and pedestals and a preponderance of artists getting their tiki on — or encouraging viewers to — as with Bryan Cunningham's small paintings offering drink recipes for the "Kon-tiki" and "Zombie." Cunningham's grog-art proves a nice matchup with Jay Rogers' charming digital print "Suffering Bastard" of another Trader Vic's drink giving off hallucinatory vapors like the reefer smoke in an exploitation film poster.

??
One of the most satisfying works is a girl-spin on the tiki mythos: Nina Friday's flirty, jocular, small paintings in her usual gothic, Margaret Keane style suggest that tikimania may actually be a case of some displaced fertility worship. In "Big Daddy," an outrageously phallic tiki is flanked by two topless hubba-hubba babes, like Hugh Hefner getting down at the Playboy Mansion. In "Tiki Baby," the same tiki icon shifts from boss-man to diapered dwarf, cradled in a pretty woman's arms.

??
For retro charm, it's hard to beat Derek Yaniger's "The Natives Are Restless," a scrupulously stylized image of a pith-helmeted colonialist being boiled in a primitive's cook pot. And Atlanta artist Joe Peery's large portrait of a bathing beauty on an ameboid-surfboard piece of wood, and smaller paintings of two mandolin-shaped nudes, mimic the kind of artwork you'd expect to find decorating some '50s ladykiller's bachelor pad or classing up a van mural.

??
Holiday Tiki Show is otherwise mildly disappointing, largely because while some of the artists have stuck closely to the theme, others give evidence common in such group shows — of just throwing some of their pre-existing work into the mix.

??
Some definite non sequiturs result, illustrated by the scene, just hours before the show's Friday night opening, of Warner unpacking a box with a last-minute arrival of formerly Atlanta- now Richmond-based artist Matthew Lively's work. Warner wasn't the only one flummoxed by the sculptures of four bread-loaf-size woolly sheep and how to justify their presence amid the grinning wooden tikis and hula dancers."
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??
Beginning in the 1930s with the debut of Hollywood's tiki-themed Don the Beachcomber restaurant and then Trader Vic's, tiki American-style was a convergence of stiff rum drinks such as the tiki-quintessential mai tai, the exotica strains of Martin Denny, kitschy decor and, voila!, superficial access to the "Other" the middle-class seems to continually crave. The trend crested in the 1950s following the return of soldiers from World War II whose travels in the South Pacific trickled down to the culture at large and with the publication of James Michener's Tales of the South Pacific in 1948, the Broadway musical version of Michener's book, South Pacific and Hawaii's entrance as the 50th state of the Union in 1959.

??
The whole trend died out in the '70s (though typically late-blooming Atlanta's Trader Vic's didn't open until 1976), only to be resurrected by "modern primitive" Gen X hipsters in the 1990s who also felt their ancestors' urge for cave-like watering holes and firewater served with paper umbrellas in hollowed-out coconuts.

??
Campy, yes, but there is an aesthetic charm to tiki, too -- those crazy totem-pole-like carved heads, the whole thatched-roof hut and Oceania-chic mutation of the mildly ethnic remains an appealing, fantastic break from the mundane.

??
Wherever tiki love -- old-style or newfangled -- comes from, it is here to stay and has found a new staging ground for its assault on our senses at Alcove Gallery. Owner Chris Warner mounts his exhibitions more like a consummate party boy than a conventional gallery director, bringing in bands and hanging art on every available surface like wallpaper. For his Holiday Tiki Show, Warner has brought the tropical indoors, with grass fronds ornamenting the walls and pedestals and a preponderance of artists getting their tiki on -- or encouraging viewers to -- as with Bryan Cunningham's small paintings offering drink recipes for the "Kon-tiki" and "Zombie." Cunningham's grog-art proves a nice matchup with Jay Rogers' charming digital print "Suffering Bastard" of another Trader Vic's drink giving off hallucinatory vapors like the reefer smoke in an exploitation film poster.

??
One of the most satisfying works is a girl-spin on the tiki mythos: Nina Friday's flirty, jocular, small paintings in her usual gothic, Margaret Keane style suggest that tikimania may actually be a case of some displaced fertility worship. In "Big Daddy," an outrageously phallic tiki is flanked by two topless hubba-hubba babes, like Hugh Hefner getting down at the Playboy Mansion. In "Tiki Baby," the same tiki icon shifts from boss-man to diapered dwarf, cradled in a pretty woman's arms.

??
For retro charm, it's hard to beat Derek Yaniger's "The Natives Are Restless," a scrupulously stylized image of a pith-helmeted colonialist being boiled in a primitive's cook pot. And Atlanta artist Joe Peery's large portrait of a bathing beauty on an ameboid-surfboard piece of wood, and smaller paintings of two mandolin-shaped nudes, mimic the kind of artwork you'd expect to find decorating some '50s ladykiller's bachelor pad or classing up a van mural.

??
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??
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??
Beginning in the 1930s with the debut of Hollywood's tiki-themed Don the Beachcomber restaurant and then Trader Vic's, tiki American-style was a convergence of stiff rum drinks such as the tiki-quintessential mai tai, the exotica strains of Martin Denny, kitschy decor and, voila!, superficial access to the "Other" the middle-class seems to continually crave. The trend crested in the 1950s following the return of soldiers from World War II whose travels in the South Pacific trickled down to the culture at large and with the publication of James Michener's Tales of the South Pacific in 1948, the Broadway musical version of Michener's book, South Pacific and Hawaii's entrance as the 50th state of the Union in 1959.

??
The whole trend died out in the '70s (though typically late-blooming Atlanta's Trader Vic's didn't open until 1976), only to be resurrected by "modern primitive" Gen X hipsters in the 1990s who also felt their ancestors' urge for cave-like watering holes and firewater served with paper umbrellas in hollowed-out coconuts.

??
Campy, yes, but there is an aesthetic charm to tiki, too — those crazy totem-pole-like carved heads, the whole thatched-roof hut and Oceania-chic mutation of the mildly ethnic remains an appealing, fantastic break from the mundane.

??
Wherever tiki love — old-style or newfangled — comes from, it is here to stay and has found a new staging ground for its assault on our senses at Alcove Gallery. Owner Chris Warner mounts his exhibitions more like a consummate party boy than a conventional gallery director, bringing in bands and hanging art on every available surface like wallpaper. For his Holiday Tiki Show, Warner has brought the tropical indoors, with grass fronds ornamenting the walls and pedestals and a preponderance of artists getting their tiki on — or encouraging viewers to — as with Bryan Cunningham's small paintings offering drink recipes for the "Kon-tiki" and "Zombie." Cunningham's grog-art proves a nice matchup with Jay Rogers' charming digital print "Suffering Bastard" of another Trader Vic's drink giving off hallucinatory vapors like the reefer smoke in an exploitation film poster.

??
One of the most satisfying works is a girl-spin on the tiki mythos: Nina Friday's flirty, jocular, small paintings in her usual gothic, Margaret Keane style suggest that tikimania may actually be a case of some displaced fertility worship. In "Big Daddy," an outrageously phallic tiki is flanked by two topless hubba-hubba babes, like Hugh Hefner getting down at the Playboy Mansion. In "Tiki Baby," the same tiki icon shifts from boss-man to diapered dwarf, cradled in a pretty woman's arms.

??
For retro charm, it's hard to beat Derek Yaniger's "The Natives Are Restless," a scrupulously stylized image of a pith-helmeted colonialist being boiled in a primitive's cook pot. And Atlanta artist Joe Peery's large portrait of a bathing beauty on an ameboid-surfboard piece of wood, and smaller paintings of two mandolin-shaped nudes, mimic the kind of artwork you'd expect to find decorating some '50s ladykiller's bachelor pad or classing up a van mural.

??
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??
Some definite non sequiturs result, illustrated by the scene, just hours before the show's Friday night opening, of Warner unpacking a box with a last-minute arrival of formerly Atlanta- now Richmond-based artist Matthew Lively's work. Warner wasn't the only one flummoxed by the sculptures of four bread-loaf-size woolly sheep and how to justify their presence amid the grinning wooden tikis and hula dancers.             13023264 1264402                          Polynesian rhapsody "
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Wednesday December 13, 2006 12:04 am EST
Riding the kitschy wave of the South Pacific | more...
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  string(4214) "The women in Ridley Howard's portraits are quixotic creatures. They wear enigmatic expressions, partly amused, partly anxious, suggesting the Mona Lisa or that hipster art chick who pulls your latte every morning with an air of gravitas.

??
Portraiture is supposed to give us access, via the artist's magical skill, to the interior life of the subject, allowing us to divine the depths of a soul. But all is impenetrable in Howard's oblique paintings. His subjects wear those hard-to-read expressions like armor and clothe themselves in neutral garb and gestures, such as the young woman in "Greenpoint," wearing a headband to contain her curls, her lipstick unmarred as she sucks on her drink and strolls the streets of Brooklyn. In both the outward expressions worn by his subjects and in his minimalist style, Howard's subjects remain aloof and unreadable, though the painter's obvious affection for them (many culled from his own friends) makes his work endearing nevertheless.

??
Somewhere between the work of graphic artist Daniel Clowes and painter Alex Katz, Howard's paintings are populated by a cast of young, stylish urbanites. His paintings, he says, reference the history of painting. His subjects thus occupy a strange liminal place, somewhere between a very Now, often cinematic-feeling sensibility and the world of classical oil painting. The off-kilter angles and the oddball approach seen in Howard's painting "Auto Parts" of a cool, confident woman with a hand placed authoritatively on her hip, but whose face is almost completely obscured by the vintage camera she holds to her eye, feel utterly modern. His work is steeped in a city life of weekends spent culling footage for a student film, gallery hopping or thrifting. But there are more backward-glancing references, too, seen in the portrait "Virtue." The 72-by-90-inch oil-on-linen painting features a beautiful, melancholy black woman wearing simple jewelry and reclining in the painting's foreground against a perfect blue sky. The woman's supine position recalls Edouard Manet's famous painting "Olympia," while her skin color recalls the dark-skinned lovelies of Paul Gauguin.

??
There is something charming, though a little artificial and idealized, in Howard's work, veering as it does toward a graphic, almost cartoon style. Howard's skin tones are warm and inviting, and there is something captivating about the odd, ambiguous expressions worn by Howard's subjects — such as the woman in "The Room," a painting Howard describes as "sort of a pop version of Raphael."

??
Howard's work shows painting's ability not to give us reality, but a better version — a more idealized take on the world, while also existing within another closed and coded world of oil painting. The skies are always blue, and there is a crisp, clean perfection to Howard's landscapes and people whose serene faces are only occasionally interrupted with a mole to remind us of their humanity.

??
These works — both the beguilingly tiny portraits in the Solomon Projects front room and the enormous works in the rear of the gallery — have a deadpan serenity that feels different from the mildly wacky, oddball scenes Howard's paintings have often featured in the past. In Howard's previous work, seemingly innocuous scenes — such as one of a woman in a Chinese restaurant or a naked couple in an uneasy embrace during a moonlight swim — are complicated by their neutral, unreadable expressions and the often huge rooms and blank landscapes that devour Howard's puny subjects. There often has been a pleasing psychological uneasiness and cockeyed sensibility to Howard's work that is missing from this emotionally even-keel collection of his latest paintings. The furnishings, the weird setups that gave Howard's work its slightly surreal quality and a disturbance buzz, are qualities replaced with a more academic investigation of portraiture. These portraits are focused more intently on female beauty and women as a perennial artistic subject. But while such an investigation is valid, the outcome of all that context and uncanny read on urban life gone missing is that some of the wacky appeal of the work is lost."
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  string(4184) "The women in Ridley Howard's portraits are quixotic creatures. They wear enigmatic expressions, partly amused, partly anxious, suggesting the Mona Lisa or that hipster art chick who pulls your latte every morning with an air of gravitas.

??
Portraiture is supposed to give us access, via the artist's magical skill, to the interior life of the subject, allowing us to divine the depths of a soul. But all is impenetrable in Howard's oblique paintings. His subjects wear those hard-to-read expressions like armor and clothe themselves in neutral garb and gestures, such as the young woman in "Greenpoint," wearing a headband to contain her curls, her lipstick unmarred as she sucks on her drink and strolls the streets of Brooklyn. In both the outward expressions worn by his subjects and in his minimalist style, Howard's subjects remain aloof and unreadable, though the painter's obvious affection for them (many culled from his own friends) makes his work endearing nevertheless.

??
Somewhere between the work of graphic artist Daniel Clowes and painter Alex Katz, Howard's paintings are populated by a cast of young, stylish urbanites. His paintings, he says, reference the history of painting. His subjects thus occupy a strange liminal place, somewhere between a very Now, often cinematic-feeling sensibility and the world of classical oil painting. The off-kilter angles and the oddball approach seen in Howard's painting "Auto Parts" of a cool, confident woman with a hand placed authoritatively on her hip, but whose face is almost completely obscured by the vintage camera she holds to her eye, feel utterly modern. His work is steeped in a city life of weekends spent culling footage for a student film, gallery hopping or thrifting. But there are more backward-glancing references, too, seen in the portrait "Virtue." The 72-by-90-inch oil-on-linen painting features a beautiful, melancholy black woman wearing simple jewelry and reclining in the painting's foreground against a perfect blue sky. The woman's supine position recalls Edouard Manet's famous painting "Olympia," while her skin color recalls the dark-skinned lovelies of Paul Gauguin.

??
There is something charming, though a little artificial and idealized, in Howard's work, veering as it does toward a graphic, almost cartoon style. Howard's skin tones are warm and inviting, and there is something captivating about the odd, ambiguous expressions worn by Howard's subjects -- such as the woman in "The Room," a painting Howard describes as "sort of a pop version of Raphael."

??
Howard's work shows painting's ability not to give us reality, but a better version -- a more idealized take on the world, while also existing within another closed and coded world of oil painting. The skies are always blue, and there is a crisp, clean perfection to Howard's landscapes and people whose serene faces are only occasionally interrupted with a mole to remind us of their humanity.

??
These works -- both the beguilingly tiny portraits in the Solomon Projects front room and the enormous works in the rear of the gallery -- have a deadpan serenity that feels different from the mildly wacky, oddball scenes Howard's paintings have often featured in the past. In Howard's previous work, seemingly innocuous scenes -- such as one of a woman in a Chinese restaurant or a naked couple in an uneasy embrace during a moonlight swim -- are complicated by their neutral, unreadable expressions and the often huge rooms and blank landscapes that devour Howard's puny subjects. There often has been a pleasing psychological uneasiness and cockeyed sensibility to Howard's work that is missing from this emotionally even-keel collection of his latest paintings. The furnishings, the weird setups that gave Howard's work its slightly surreal quality and a disturbance buzz, are qualities replaced with a more academic investigation of portraiture. These portraits are focused more intently on female beauty and women as a perennial artistic subject. But while such an investigation is valid, the outcome of all that context and uncanny read on urban life gone missing is that some of the wacky appeal of the work is lost."
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  string(4418) "    Ridley Howard's feminine mystique   2006-12-06T05:04:00+00:00 Sitting pretty   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2006-12-06T05:04:00+00:00  The women in Ridley Howard's portraits are quixotic creatures. They wear enigmatic expressions, partly amused, partly anxious, suggesting the Mona Lisa or that hipster art chick who pulls your latte every morning with an air of gravitas.

??
Portraiture is supposed to give us access, via the artist's magical skill, to the interior life of the subject, allowing us to divine the depths of a soul. But all is impenetrable in Howard's oblique paintings. His subjects wear those hard-to-read expressions like armor and clothe themselves in neutral garb and gestures, such as the young woman in "Greenpoint," wearing a headband to contain her curls, her lipstick unmarred as she sucks on her drink and strolls the streets of Brooklyn. In both the outward expressions worn by his subjects and in his minimalist style, Howard's subjects remain aloof and unreadable, though the painter's obvious affection for them (many culled from his own friends) makes his work endearing nevertheless.

??
Somewhere between the work of graphic artist Daniel Clowes and painter Alex Katz, Howard's paintings are populated by a cast of young, stylish urbanites. His paintings, he says, reference the history of painting. His subjects thus occupy a strange liminal place, somewhere between a very Now, often cinematic-feeling sensibility and the world of classical oil painting. The off-kilter angles and the oddball approach seen in Howard's painting "Auto Parts" of a cool, confident woman with a hand placed authoritatively on her hip, but whose face is almost completely obscured by the vintage camera she holds to her eye, feel utterly modern. His work is steeped in a city life of weekends spent culling footage for a student film, gallery hopping or thrifting. But there are more backward-glancing references, too, seen in the portrait "Virtue." The 72-by-90-inch oil-on-linen painting features a beautiful, melancholy black woman wearing simple jewelry and reclining in the painting's foreground against a perfect blue sky. The woman's supine position recalls Edouard Manet's famous painting "Olympia," while her skin color recalls the dark-skinned lovelies of Paul Gauguin.

??
There is something charming, though a little artificial and idealized, in Howard's work, veering as it does toward a graphic, almost cartoon style. Howard's skin tones are warm and inviting, and there is something captivating about the odd, ambiguous expressions worn by Howard's subjects — such as the woman in "The Room," a painting Howard describes as "sort of a pop version of Raphael."

??
Howard's work shows painting's ability not to give us reality, but a better version — a more idealized take on the world, while also existing within another closed and coded world of oil painting. The skies are always blue, and there is a crisp, clean perfection to Howard's landscapes and people whose serene faces are only occasionally interrupted with a mole to remind us of their humanity.

??
These works — both the beguilingly tiny portraits in the Solomon Projects front room and the enormous works in the rear of the gallery — have a deadpan serenity that feels different from the mildly wacky, oddball scenes Howard's paintings have often featured in the past. In Howard's previous work, seemingly innocuous scenes — such as one of a woman in a Chinese restaurant or a naked couple in an uneasy embrace during a moonlight swim — are complicated by their neutral, unreadable expressions and the often huge rooms and blank landscapes that devour Howard's puny subjects. There often has been a pleasing psychological uneasiness and cockeyed sensibility to Howard's work that is missing from this emotionally even-keel collection of his latest paintings. The furnishings, the weird setups that gave Howard's work its slightly surreal quality and a disturbance buzz, are qualities replaced with a more academic investigation of portraiture. These portraits are focused more intently on female beauty and women as a perennial artistic subject. But while such an investigation is valid, the outcome of all that context and uncanny read on urban life gone missing is that some of the wacky appeal of the work is lost.             13023208 1264274                          Sitting pretty "
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Wednesday December 6, 2006 12:04 am EST
Ridley Howard's feminine mystique | more...
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  string(2363) "The Atlanta Civic Center is proving the city's primary venue for highly produced examinations of death. The recent BODIES: The Exhibition, featuring plasticized Chinese, is now followed by another death-tripper for the whole family, Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition, put on by the Atlanta-based BODIES crew, Premier Exhibitions, Inc. and centered on this infamous 1912 maritime disaster.

??
Though it occasionally succumbs to the same cheese factor that gave BODIES its freak-show quality, Titanic's survey of mortality is a more poetic look into the void. Perhaps taking a cue from another Titanic obsessive, director James Cameron, the Premier exhibition uses some distinctly cinematic strategies.

??
Upon entering, an ominous "soundtrack" portending doom shifts as visitors thread their way through the exhibit rooms, changing from rousing celebratory fiddling for the boat's launch and culminating in metallic pings and groans as death comes a-calling. The mood lighting, props and set design throughout the exhibit, including a slab of ice in the shape of the famous deadly iceberg viewers can touch, aspire to create a sensory immersion in the Titanic experience.

??
The emphasis in this exhibition is on the 300-plus artifacts recovered from the disaster site in 1993 that are heralded as more telling and emotionally stirring a connection to dead souls than words or pictures.

??
It's a debatable point, though some of the most fascinating documents are objects, such as the elaborate Titanic dinnerware, which proves a potent means of appreciating the social mores of the time: small details of china design (such as the ship's logo placed on third-class dinnerware to discourage theft) offering material connections with how life was lived.

??
The Titanic is an enduring metaphor and reminder of our own mortality that seems even more appropriate in the wake of Sept. 11, and with the escalation of the war in Iraq, when death seems to be a more immediate concern. Like the destruction of the World Trade Centers, the grand ship felled by an iceberg continues as a reminder that even wealth and technology cannot stave off the great equalizer of death.

??
Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. Through June 2, 2007. $16-$20. Mon.-Thurs., 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Fri.-Sun., 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Atlanta Civic Center, 395 Piedmont Ave. 866-640-0303. www.titanictix.com."
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??
Though it occasionally succumbs to the same cheese factor that gave ''BODIES'' its freak-show quality, ''Titanic'''s survey of mortality is a more poetic look into the void. Perhaps taking a cue from another Titanic obsessive, director James Cameron, the Premier exhibition uses some distinctly cinematic strategies.

??
Upon entering, an ominous "soundtrack" portending doom shifts as visitors thread their way through the exhibit rooms, changing from rousing celebratory fiddling for the boat's launch and culminating in metallic pings and groans as death comes a-calling. The mood lighting, props and set design throughout the exhibit, including a slab of ice in the shape of the famous deadly iceberg viewers can touch, aspire to create a sensory immersion in the Titanic experience.

??
The emphasis in this exhibition is on the 300-plus artifacts recovered from the disaster site in 1993 that are heralded as more telling and emotionally stirring a connection to dead souls than words or pictures.

??
It's a debatable point, though some of the most fascinating documents are objects, such as the elaborate Titanic dinnerware, which proves a potent means of appreciating the social mores of the time: small details of china design (such as the ship's logo placed on third-class dinnerware to discourage theft) offering material connections with how life was lived.

??
The Titanic is an enduring metaphor and reminder of our own mortality that seems even more appropriate in the wake of Sept. 11, and with the escalation of the war in Iraq, when death seems to be a more immediate concern. Like the destruction of the World Trade Centers, the grand ship felled by an iceberg continues as a reminder that even wealth and technology cannot stave off the great equalizer of death.

??
Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. ''Through June 2, 2007. $16-$20. Mon.-Thurs., 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Fri.-Sun., 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Atlanta Civic Center, 395 Piedmont Ave. 866-640-0303. [http://www.titanictix.com/|www.titanictix.com].''"
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??
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??
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??
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??
It's a debatable point, though some of the most fascinating documents are objects, such as the elaborate Titanic dinnerware, which proves a potent means of appreciating the social mores of the time: small details of china design (such as the ship's logo placed on third-class dinnerware to discourage theft) offering material connections with how life was lived.

??
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??
Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. Through June 2, 2007. $16-$20. Mon.-Thurs., 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Fri.-Sun., 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Atlanta Civic Center, 395 Piedmont Ave. 866-640-0303. www.titanictix.com.             13023232 1264318                          That sinking feeling "
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Wednesday December 6, 2006 12:04 am EST
Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition | more...
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The neighborhood's "ArtStrolls" every six weeks or so have been well attended and ribald enough to have created concerns about drinking and excessive revelry at those popular events. With its edgy vibe, vibrant street culture and high concentration of galleries, Castleberry has remained hot in a city where what was once hot can turn overnight into gentrified yuppiedom. It is also the portion of the city that many (myself included) have pinned their hopes on for becoming Atlanta's art nexus — a yearned-for center in a centerless city.</
But recently there has also been some art-world chatter, centered on the small but significant exodus of galleries from the area, including Skot Foreman Fine Art and Ty Stokes Gallery in the past year. Diane Hause's noncommercial 3Ten Haustudio gallery and residence, one of the earliest arrivals on the Castleberry art scene in 1999, is also up for sale after playing an important role in bringing art and audiences to the neighborhood.</
Gallery owner Marcia Wood has heard the gossip, too.</
"It's unfortunate that the first thing people are going to think is always the negative," she says of the speculation about the gallery closings. "'Oh, they couldn't make it in Castleberry.'"</
Though the gallery closings seem more related to their owners' personal trajectories than economics, the potential loss of three galleries leads to the question: Is Castleberry still the destination-oriented arts district it once was?</
Sam Romo is a relatively new arrival to Castleberry; he opened his highly regarded contemporary-art gallery Romo in 2005, across Peters Street from 3Ten Haustudio. He is concerned, but hardly panicked by the gallery exodus.</
"She's been around a long time, she knew a lot of people in the art community," Romo says of Hause. "With her leaving, it's potentially going to decrease some attendance — potentially."</
Gallery owner Benjamin Krause is less concerned, noting little change in sales or attendance at his gallery since the shuttering of Skot Foreman and Ty Stokes.</
"Castleberry has always waxed and waned," admits Hause, who plans to open a new "art environment" on the North Carolina coast. "It seems to be the nature of the neighborhood."</
As evidence of that very ebb and flow, despite the gallery closings, the neighborhood has also buzzed with rumors of several new galleries debuting, including Atlanta College of Art grad Michael Jones' studio 75 Mixed Medium and Nicole Zagrodny's Nozoku Gallery.</
And in addition to the array of existing art spaces — including Wertz Contemporary, Garage Projects, Monica Tookes Gallery, Get This! Gallery — the past year also has seen the long-anticipated opening of sushi restaurant Wasabi and No Mas! Mexican Cantina, and the end of January will mark the debut of a 3,000-square-foot wine bistro and merchant, OWC. Co-owner Kenneth Green says he was drawn to Castleberry, not because of its status as a gallery district, but because of its unique streetscape and still-intact, ephemeral quality of "edginess."</
"The fact that it's not branded in any corporate manner," Green says, "was important to me, too."</
For Bill Bounds, the owner of Ty Stokes, it's all relative: "If you think of where we've come in three years, it's pretty amazing." Bounds has been in the Castleberry neighborhood since 1999. The 6,000-square-foot space where Bounds lived and operated Ty Stokes Gallery since 2004 is currently under contract, and its next resident will in all likelihood not use the space as a gallery.</
Like many business people and residents in Castleberry, Marcia Wood — who relocated to the neighborhood from Buckhead in 2004 — has had to temper an art-gallery owner's hopes for the neighborhood with the reality: "For me, it's like, sure I'd love for Castleberry to be a booming gallery district or for Atlanta to have a booming gallery district, but we never really have."</
"The nature of this beast is that we're more like L.A. than New York, being a car town, and it won't happen."</
Ultimately, Castleberry and its "is-it?/is-it-not?" status as an arts destination may actually have something to teach us — ever searching for some sliver of New York, some ersatz Dixie answer to a Chelsea thick with galleries or other indication that we are finally white hot.</
In reality, Atlanta's galleries may be like Atlanta's other retail boutiques and businesses — a place that residents seek out, drive to and organize their lives around according to interest and taste. It is not necessarily maximum gallery density that makes a neighborhood viable as an arts hub. The better measure of Atlanta's rising status as an arts-friendly city may be the existence of a variety of galleries, at a number of price points, all over the city in emerging neighborhoods, OTP towns and pricey gold-chip suburbs alike.

































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  string(5533) "    Castleberry Hill's status as an arts center is in jeopardy   2006-11-29T05:04:00+00:00 For Art's Sake - HubCap   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2006-11-29T05:04:00+00:00  For some time now, the Castleberry Hill neighborhood in a still-industrial-feeling southwest corner of downtown has been growing like gangbusters. Its ascendant status as an Atlanta arts hub has been crowed about nationally in articles for the New York Times and Elle and more than once in the pages of Creative Loafing.</
The neighborhood's "ArtStrolls" every six weeks or so have been well attended and ribald enough to have created concerns about drinking and excessive revelry at those popular events. With its edgy vibe, vibrant street culture and high concentration of galleries, Castleberry has remained hot in a city where what was once hot can turn overnight into gentrified yuppiedom. It is also the portion of the city that many (myself included) have pinned their hopes on for becoming Atlanta's art nexus — a yearned-for center in a centerless city.</
But recently there has also been some art-world chatter, centered on the small but significant exodus of galleries from the area, including Skot Foreman Fine Art and Ty Stokes Gallery in the past year. Diane Hause's noncommercial 3Ten Haustudio gallery and residence, one of the earliest arrivals on the Castleberry art scene in 1999, is also up for sale after playing an important role in bringing art and audiences to the neighborhood.</
Gallery owner Marcia Wood has heard the gossip, too.</
"It's unfortunate that the first thing people are going to think is always the negative," she says of the speculation about the gallery closings. "'Oh, they couldn't make it in Castleberry.'"</
Though the gallery closings seem more related to their owners' personal trajectories than economics, the potential loss of three galleries leads to the question: Is Castleberry still the destination-oriented arts district it once was?</
Sam Romo is a relatively new arrival to Castleberry; he opened his highly regarded contemporary-art gallery Romo in 2005, across Peters Street from 3Ten Haustudio. He is concerned, but hardly panicked by the gallery exodus.</
"She's been around a long time, she knew a lot of people in the art community," Romo says of Hause. "With her leaving, it's potentially going to decrease some attendance — potentially."</
Gallery owner Benjamin Krause is less concerned, noting little change in sales or attendance at his gallery since the shuttering of Skot Foreman and Ty Stokes.</
"Castleberry has always waxed and waned," admits Hause, who plans to open a new "art environment" on the North Carolina coast. "It seems to be the nature of the neighborhood."</
As evidence of that very ebb and flow, despite the gallery closings, the neighborhood has also buzzed with rumors of several new galleries debuting, including Atlanta College of Art grad Michael Jones' studio 75 Mixed Medium and Nicole Zagrodny's Nozoku Gallery.</
And in addition to the array of existing art spaces — including Wertz Contemporary, Garage Projects, Monica Tookes Gallery, Get This! Gallery — the past year also has seen the long-anticipated opening of sushi restaurant Wasabi and No Mas! Mexican Cantina, and the end of January will mark the debut of a 3,000-square-foot wine bistro and merchant, OWC. Co-owner Kenneth Green says he was drawn to Castleberry, not because of its status as a gallery district, but because of its unique streetscape and still-intact, ephemeral quality of "edginess."</
"The fact that it's not branded in any corporate manner," Green says, "was important to me, too."</
For Bill Bounds, the owner of Ty Stokes, it's all relative: "If you think of where we've come in three years, it's pretty amazing." Bounds has been in the Castleberry neighborhood since 1999. The 6,000-square-foot space where Bounds lived and operated Ty Stokes Gallery since 2004 is currently under contract, and its next resident will in all likelihood not use the space as a gallery.</
Like many business people and residents in Castleberry, Marcia Wood — who relocated to the neighborhood from Buckhead in 2004 — has had to temper an art-gallery owner's hopes for the neighborhood with the reality: "For me, it's like, sure I'd love for Castleberry to be a booming gallery district or for Atlanta to have a booming gallery district, but we never really have."</
"The nature of this beast is that we're more like L.A. than New York, being a car town, and it won't happen."</
Ultimately, Castleberry and its "is-it?/is-it-not?" status as an arts destination may actually have something to teach us — ever searching for some sliver of New York, some ersatz Dixie answer to a Chelsea thick with galleries or other indication that we are finally white hot.</
In reality, Atlanta's galleries may be like Atlanta's other retail boutiques and businesses — a place that residents seek out, drive to and organize their lives around according to interest and taste. It is not necessarily maximum gallery density that makes a neighborhood viable as an arts hub. The better measure of Atlanta's rising status as an arts-friendly city may be the existence of a variety of galleries, at a number of price points, all over the city in emerging neighborhoods, OTP towns and pricey gold-chip suburbs alike.

































             13023153 1264126                          For Art's Sake - HubCap "
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Wednesday November 29, 2006 12:04 am EST
Castleberry Hill's status as an arts center is in jeopardy | more...
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  string(2483) "The Atlanta College of Art Gallery has for a long time been a forum for cutting-edge, politically minded, socially engaged work — work that often feels like a jolting, pleasant break from the well-heeled slickness of the Woodruff Arts Center. Because of that tradition of surly idea-art, one might be inclined to judge the current Monique van Genderen show The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life at the renamed "ACA Gallery of SCAD" now under the helm of the Savannah College of Art and Design more harshly.

Van Genderen's work is not political or difficult, though if noodly genre-exploration of what constitutes painting turns you on, the show may be a welcome change. It is about formal issues in art-making. It is often lovely and evokes, most immediately, the color-chocked patterns of late Matisse and the visual wit of Joan Miró.

Pleasant enough for its own formal qualities, the work investigates what painting "means" since van Genderen is just as likely to use vinyl cutouts (the L.A. artist's day job is designing vinyl museum and gallery signage) placed directly on the wall, as the traditional tools of paint and canvas.

The first, most arresting visual upon entering the gallery is a floor-to-ceiling 10-by-40-foot installation "Untitled (... The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life, Part I)." Van Genderen's color palette is vibrant and energetic, often quirky, full of fat splashes of hot pink, soothing tans, go-go-go orange spurts, puke green, pale ivory and silvery prismatic wiggles. Van Genderen's work, with its biomorphic shapes and attentive color choice, can feel distinctly vintage — perhaps indebted to L.A.'s modernist architectural and design elements — and would look right at home in a mid-century bank or ad firm.

Less impressive, even disappointing, are the watercolor diptych "Book Pages" simply framed and propped against the wall shown throughout the gallery.

Probably the most satisfying painting in the show is an enamel-and-oil-on-panel work, "(... the Sensory Foundations of Mental Life, Part II)." The intoxicating piece mixes vaguely floral forms and olive green with a blushing pink and reminds you of the deep pleasures that surface, color and line can provide.

Monique van Genderen: The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life. Through Jan. 2. ACA Gallery of SCAD, 1280 Peachtree St. Tues.-Wed., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Thurs.-Fri., 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun. 12 p.m.-5 p.m. 404-815-2931. www.acagallery.org."
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Van Genderen's work is not political or difficult, though if noodly genre-exploration of what constitutes painting turns you on, the show may be a welcome change. It is about formal issues in art-making. It is often lovely and evokes, most immediately, the color-chocked patterns of late Matisse and the visual wit of Joan Miró.

Pleasant enough for its own formal qualities, the work investigates what painting "means" since van Genderen is just as likely to use vinyl cutouts (the L.A. artist's day job is designing vinyl museum and gallery signage) placed directly on the wall, as the traditional tools of paint and canvas.

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Probably the most satisfying painting in the show is an enamel-and-oil-on-panel work, "(... the Sensory Foundations of Mental Life, Part II)." The intoxicating piece mixes vaguely floral forms and olive green with a blushing pink and reminds you of the deep pleasures that surface, color and line can provide.

Monique van Genderen: The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life. ''Through Jan. 2. ACA Gallery of SCAD, 1280 Peachtree St. Tues.-Wed., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Thurs.-Fri., 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun. 12 p.m.-5 p.m. 404-815-2931. [http://www.acagallery.org/|www.acagallery.org].''"
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Monique van Genderen: The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life. Through Jan. 2. ACA Gallery of SCAD, 1280 Peachtree St. Tues.-Wed., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Thurs.-Fri., 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun. 12 p.m.-5 p.m. 404-815-2931. www.acagallery.org.             13023185 1264184                          Visual Arts - Pretty is as pretty does "
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Wednesday November 29, 2006 12:04 am EST
The Sensory Foundations of Mental Life at the ACA Gallery of SCAD | more...
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  string(2233) "In terms of subject matter, you probably couldn't find three female artists more different than C. Dawn Davis, Pamela Murphy and Gwen Wong.

??
Davis' darkly psychological paintings of a Frida Kahlo-style woman with butterfly skirt and green pompadour or sallow men and women in toy-filled workrooms mix fairy tale and gothic adult fantasy, innocence and kink, astrology and V.C. Andrews.

??
While Davis' subjects range from chiseled nudes to eerie children, Wong has only one subject. Her fixation? Velvety Weimaraners, who, like one of William Wegman's dogs or the canine hero of a children's book, get into adorably existential doggie scrapes with grasshoppers and red balls and fish bowls.

??
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??
And yet, despite their very different subject matter and styles, these three painters couldn't be closer in sensibility. All bring a touch of magical realism and melancholy to their work whether in the gothic, Cirque de Soleil ambiance of Davis' scenarios, or the odd, theatrical tableaux of dog-meets-world acted out in Wong's. All three artists are entranced by a highly theatrical, stylized, controlled space. Wong's Weimaraners are representative of that tendency. They don't occupy any real, recognizable space. Instead they play and ponder against simplified backgrounds where a horizon line or simply rendered brown hill against a flat, blue sky gives things a stage-set surrealism.

??
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??
Check out more photos from this show in our gallery."
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??
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  string(2424) "    New works at Aliya Gallery   2006-11-22T05:04:00+00:00 Three women   Felicia Feaster 1223506 2006-11-22T05:04:00+00:00  In terms of subject matter, you probably couldn't find three female artists more different than C. Dawn Davis, Pamela Murphy and Gwen Wong.

??
Davis' darkly psychological paintings of a Frida Kahlo-style woman with butterfly skirt and green pompadour or sallow men and women in toy-filled workrooms mix fairy tale and gothic adult fantasy, innocence and kink, astrology and V.C. Andrews.

??
While Davis' subjects range from chiseled nudes to eerie children, Wong has only one subject. Her fixation? Velvety Weimaraners, who, like one of William Wegman's dogs or the canine hero of a children's book, get into adorably existential doggie scrapes with grasshoppers and red balls and fish bowls.

??
Pamela Murphy, meanwhile, is fixated on antiquated images of people, mostly children, lifted from vintage photographs. Murphy's little girls in white dresses or young ladies in prim bonnets are adrift on vast canvases with the distressed, weathered look of decomposing film stock or walls whose plaster has begun to peel away in multicolored layers to visually evoke time's passage.

??
And yet, despite their very different subject matter and styles, these three painters couldn't be closer in sensibility. All bring a touch of magical realism and melancholy to their work whether in the gothic, Cirque de Soleil ambiance of Davis' scenarios, or the odd, theatrical tableaux of dog-meets-world acted out in Wong's. All three artists are entranced by a highly theatrical, stylized, controlled space. Wong's Weimaraners are representative of that tendency. They don't occupy any real, recognizable space. Instead they play and ponder against simplified backgrounds where a horizon line or simply rendered brown hill against a flat, blue sky gives things a stage-set surrealism.

??
Together, the artists make curatorial sense, even if all of them in the same gallery space also tend to point out a shared tendency toward preciousness, strained romanticism and scenarios that can look psychological in one canvas and then cloying and affected in the next. Each artist has one or two standouts and then works that feel half-cocked, as if the artist was only working at half-power.

??
Check out more photos from this show in our gallery.             13023105 1264022                          Three women "
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Article

Wednesday November 22, 2006 12:04 am EST
New works at Aliya Gallery | more...
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  string(30) "Two artists at Romo rein it in"
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  string(3965) "Even when Atlanta-based artist Alex Kvares is restrained, he is scary, scary stuff. A member of the art collective Golden Blizzard and a prolific solo artist, too, Kvares has toned down his stock-in-trade scatological death-metal visuals for his first exhibition at Castleberry Hill's Romo Gallery.

??
In keeping with that "restraint," the suppurating pustules, gory entrails, puddles of blood, car wrecks, murder, mayhem and enough bad attitude to fuel 10 Black Sabbath covers have gone underground. Gone, too, are the acid pinks and blues and piss-yellow colors that give Kvares' works their assaulting edge.

??
That chromatic excess has been replaced by subtle pencil drawings embellished with occasional threads of more subdued color. Kvares' new drawings are like Belgian lace work or cake icing compared with the artist's previous Grand Guignol gothics.

??
Fans of the artist's death-tripping work might initially feel a slight nostalgic pang for a moment, of missing the old Kvares, the quintessential badass artist daring you to keep eyeballing his giddy grotesques.

??
But though the shock troops are gone, there is something more satisfying in their wake in these quietly disturbing "landscapes" where the scary skeletal faces and dismembered bodies are buried beneath mounds of graphic white noise: piles of hair and heaps of obsessive, doodled detail.

??
In pencil-on-paper works such as "Mountain of Reverb" and "Quintet," masses of abstract visual detail, spikes, crystals and ropes of beads dominate images from which microphones, turntables and drum sets and other musical tropes emerge. Kvares' work often has dealt with music culture and its cathartic venting of alienation and rage. But these latest precisely controlled works, instead of expressing rage and protest, seem a visual expression of music itself — the building crescendos, the waves of sound. Kvares' detail is demonically precise; the shading and gestures are so focused and refined it lends a delicacy and refinement to the madness that hasn't been so evident in the cock-rock preening of his previous work.

??
The restraint and contained, interiorized psychedelia suits Kvares, who says more when his acid impulses merely bubble and percolate beneath the surface than when he blows his wad.

??
An indication of Kvares' new restraint is how well his work jibes with Brooklyn artist Ryan Mrozowski's cucumber-cool, minimalist drawings. Like Kvares, Mrozowski's visual shtick is all about energy distilled into a small space, harnessed-in emotions and psychological containment.

??
Mrozowski's drawings deal with groups, with power dynamics, with group think and sheep-like behavior. Tending to keep his color scheme simple and his graphics stark, Mrozowski's "Untitled" is a typically restrained drawing of a herd of dogs in shades of green, blue and yellow against a flat black background. That notion of the herd crops up again and again in Mrozowski's drawings of human groups, such as the identically dressed people in "A Charlatan's Tale" who appear captivated by a mesmeric figure with a Rasputin beard and halo crowning his head. The shared color scheme and similar posture to the listeners suggests blind obedience and absolute conformity and the rapt attention of people who have lost their will to object.

??
Mrozowski's black-and-white drawings suggest the surreal patterns of M.C. Escher crossed with the social critique of political cartoons. In "With Capes to Protect Us," unarmed spectators are "protected" from a passive herd of cattle by flamboyantly gesturing matadors. In "Discovered Among the Whales," people perform the identical gestures of taking photographs and leading tours while killer whales perform.

??
Such works indicate human behavior that is as orchestrated and instinctual as anything seen in the animal kingdom.

??
In Kvares' and Mrozowski's similarly controlled and cool art work, humanity can seem a strange, perverse spectacle."
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  string(3960) "Even when Atlanta-based artist Alex Kvares is restrained, he is scary, scary stuff. A member of the art collective Golden Blizzard and a prolific solo artist, too, Kvares has toned down his stock-in-trade scatological death-metal visuals for his first exhibition at Castleberry Hill's Romo Gallery.

??
In keeping with that "restraint," the suppurating pustules, gory entrails, puddles of blood, car wrecks, murder, mayhem and enough bad attitude to fuel 10 Black Sabbath covers have gone underground. Gone, too, are the acid pinks and blues and piss-yellow colors that give Kvares' works their assaulting edge.

??
That chromatic excess has been replaced by subtle pencil drawings embellished with occasional threads of more subdued color. Kvares' new drawings are like Belgian lace work or cake icing compared with the artist's previous Grand Guignol gothics.

??
Fans of the artist's death-tripping work might initially feel a slight nostalgic pang for a moment, of missing the old Kvares, the quintessential badass artist daring you to keep eyeballing his giddy grotesques.

??
But though the shock troops are gone, there is something more satisfying in their wake in these quietly disturbing "landscapes" where the scary skeletal faces and dismembered bodies are buried beneath mounds of graphic white noise: piles of hair and heaps of obsessive, doodled detail.

??
In pencil-on-paper works such as "Mountain of Reverb" and "Quintet," masses of abstract visual detail, spikes, crystals and ropes of beads dominate images from which microphones, turntables and drum sets and other musical tropes emerge. Kvares' work often has dealt with music culture and its cathartic venting of alienation and rage. But these latest precisely controlled works, instead of expressing rage and protest, seem a visual expression of music itself -- the building crescendos, the waves of sound. Kvares' detail is demonically precise; the shading and gestures are so focused and refined it lends a delicacy and refinement to the madness that hasn't been so evident in the cock-rock preening of his previous work.

??
The restraint and contained, interiorized psychedelia suits Kvares, who says more when his acid impulses merely bubble and percolate beneath the surface than when he blows his wad.

??
An indication of Kvares' new restraint is how well his work jibes with Brooklyn artist Ryan Mrozowski's cucumber-cool, minimalist drawings. Like Kvares, Mrozowski's visual shtick is all about energy distilled into a small space, harnessed-in emotions and psychological containment.

??
Mrozowski's drawings deal with groups, with power dynamics, with group think and sheep-like behavior. Tending to keep his color scheme simple and his graphics stark, Mrozowski's "Untitled" is a typically restrained drawing of a herd of dogs in shades of green, blue and yellow against a flat black background. That notion of the herd crops up again and again in Mrozowski's drawings of human groups, such as the identically dressed people in "A Charlatan's Tale" who appear captivated by a mesmeric figure with a Rasputin beard and halo crowning his head. The shared color scheme and similar posture to the listeners suggests blind obedience and absolute conformity and the rapt attention of people who have lost their will to object.

??
Mrozowski's black-and-white drawings suggest the surreal patterns of M.C. Escher crossed with the social critique of political cartoons. In "With Capes to Protect Us," unarmed spectators are "protected" from a passive herd of cattle by flamboyantly gesturing matadors. In "Discovered Among the Whales," people perform the identical gestures of taking photographs and leading tours while killer whales perform.

??
Such works indicate human behavior that is as orchestrated and instinctual as anything seen in the animal kingdom.

??
In Kvares' and Mrozowski's similarly controlled and cool art work, humanity can seem a strange, perverse spectacle."
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??
In keeping with that "restraint," the suppurating pustules, gory entrails, puddles of blood, car wrecks, murder, mayhem and enough bad attitude to fuel 10 Black Sabbath covers have gone underground. Gone, too, are the acid pinks and blues and piss-yellow colors that give Kvares' works their assaulting edge.

??
That chromatic excess has been replaced by subtle pencil drawings embellished with occasional threads of more subdued color. Kvares' new drawings are like Belgian lace work or cake icing compared with the artist's previous Grand Guignol gothics.

??
Fans of the artist's death-tripping work might initially feel a slight nostalgic pang for a moment, of missing the old Kvares, the quintessential badass artist daring you to keep eyeballing his giddy grotesques.

??
But though the shock troops are gone, there is something more satisfying in their wake in these quietly disturbing "landscapes" where the scary skeletal faces and dismembered bodies are buried beneath mounds of graphic white noise: piles of hair and heaps of obsessive, doodled detail.

??
In pencil-on-paper works such as "Mountain of Reverb" and "Quintet," masses of abstract visual detail, spikes, crystals and ropes of beads dominate images from which microphones, turntables and drum sets and other musical tropes emerge. Kvares' work often has dealt with music culture and its cathartic venting of alienation and rage. But these latest precisely controlled works, instead of expressing rage and protest, seem a visual expression of music itself — the building crescendos, the waves of sound. Kvares' detail is demonically precise; the shading and gestures are so focused and refined it lends a delicacy and refinement to the madness that hasn't been so evident in the cock-rock preening of his previous work.

??
The restraint and contained, interiorized psychedelia suits Kvares, who says more when his acid impulses merely bubble and percolate beneath the surface than when he blows his wad.

??
An indication of Kvares' new restraint is how well his work jibes with Brooklyn artist Ryan Mrozowski's cucumber-cool, minimalist drawings. Like Kvares, Mrozowski's visual shtick is all about energy distilled into a small space, harnessed-in emotions and psychological containment.

??
Mrozowski's drawings deal with groups, with power dynamics, with group think and sheep-like behavior. Tending to keep his color scheme simple and his graphics stark, Mrozowski's "Untitled" is a typically restrained drawing of a herd of dogs in shades of green, blue and yellow against a flat black background. That notion of the herd crops up again and again in Mrozowski's drawings of human groups, such as the identically dressed people in "A Charlatan's Tale" who appear captivated by a mesmeric figure with a Rasputin beard and halo crowning his head. The shared color scheme and similar posture to the listeners suggests blind obedience and absolute conformity and the rapt attention of people who have lost their will to object.

??
Mrozowski's black-and-white drawings suggest the surreal patterns of M.C. Escher crossed with the social critique of political cartoons. In "With Capes to Protect Us," unarmed spectators are "protected" from a passive herd of cattle by flamboyantly gesturing matadors. In "Discovered Among the Whales," people perform the identical gestures of taking photographs and leading tours while killer whales perform.

??
Such works indicate human behavior that is as orchestrated and instinctual as anything seen in the animal kingdom.

??
In Kvares' and Mrozowski's similarly controlled and cool art work, humanity can seem a strange, perverse spectacle.             13023045 1263888                          Containment Strategy "
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Wednesday November 15, 2006 12:04 am EST
Two artists at Romo rein it in | more...
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  string(2595) "Like crawling inside the cranium of a 3-year-old, Plush at Young Blood Gallery is evidence of this alternative art space's devotion to all that is crafty, silly and transcendently cute.

??
Plush is, like the best endeavors at Young Blood, a group effort uniting 25 local and national artists and reflecting the esprit de corps that consistently defines the space. The communally crafted installation entails fabric covering floors, walls, ceilings and every available surface — like a Willy Wonka paradise where everything is edible.

??
Young Blood co-owner Kelly Teasley has created a soft sculpture fence to welcome viewers into Plush's playpen space. In this exhibit's downy answer to our hard-surfaced reality, cushy palm trees and fabric stumps grow from the floor, smiling raindrops and angry storm clouds hang from the rafters and the soft landscape is occupied by enough bunnies, bears, ponies and monkeys to outfit a dozen tween bedrooms.

??
You remove your shoes to protect the foam pathway and stroll amid the Pee-Wee Herman soft sculpture environment where every anthropomorphized critter wears a fetching grin. The tactile payoff is immediate — and affirmation that the sensation of touch is one of the often-unexplored features of the contemporary art experience.

??
One of the most deliciously wacky tableaux occupies the installation's immediate right, where a gaggle of artist Missy Kulik's 1960s-style wiener dogs stage a hootenanny camp-out beneath quilt square mountains, roasting fabric s'mores over a fabric fire. The show's vibe is infectiously giggle-inducing, as each turn yields some new perversion of cute. Raoul de la Cruz crafts grinning "Fangs" and "Tooth Fairies" that suggest that wet noses, wagging tails and appendages are not necessities in cuteness' vernacular. A woman uniquely talented at making everything from toast to chocolate donuts into totems of huggability, for Plush, Pennsylvania's Heidi Kenney offers a "Sad Tree Stump" shedding a poignant fat tear, a plush ice cream truck, TV, banana and other surreal softies.

??
Some of Plush's crocheted critters have the flea-bitten faces and lumpy bodies only a mother could love. But craft is often a genre made up of equal parts love and incompetence, failure and ambition.

??
And Plush is a show that recognizes the potential repulsiveness and obsession of handicrafts pushed to the bitter limits of cute.

??
Plush. Through Nov. 26. Young Blood Gallery, 629 Glenwood Ave. Wed. and Fri., noon-6 p.m.; Thurs., noon-7 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., noon-5 p.m. 404-627-0393. www.youngbloodgallery.com."
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''Plush'' is, like the best endeavors at Young Blood, a group effort uniting 25 local and national artists and reflecting the esprit de corps that consistently defines the space. The communally crafted installation entails fabric covering floors, walls, ceilings and every available surface -- like a Willy Wonka paradise where everything is edible.

??
Young Blood co-owner Kelly Teasley has created a soft sculpture fence to welcome viewers into ''Plush's'' playpen space. In this exhibit's downy answer to our hard-surfaced reality, cushy palm trees and fabric stumps grow from the floor, smiling raindrops and angry storm clouds hang from the rafters and the soft landscape is occupied by enough bunnies, bears, ponies and monkeys to outfit a dozen tween bedrooms.

??
You remove your shoes to protect the foam pathway and stroll amid the Pee-Wee Herman soft sculpture environment where every anthropomorphized critter wears a fetching grin. The tactile payoff is immediate -- and affirmation that the sensation of touch is one of the often-unexplored features of the contemporary art experience.

??
One of the most deliciously wacky tableaux occupies the installation's immediate right, where a gaggle of artist Missy Kulik's 1960s-style wiener dogs stage a hootenanny camp-out beneath quilt square mountains, roasting fabric s'mores over a fabric fire. The show's vibe is infectiously giggle-inducing, as each turn yields some new perversion of cute. Raoul de la Cruz crafts grinning "Fangs" and "Tooth Fairies" that suggest that wet noses, wagging tails and appendages are not necessities in cuteness' vernacular. A woman uniquely talented at making everything from toast to chocolate donuts into totems of huggability, for ''Plush'', Pennsylvania's Heidi Kenney offers a "Sad Tree Stump" shedding a poignant fat tear, a plush ice cream truck, TV, banana and other surreal softies.

??
Some of ''Plush's'' crocheted critters have the flea-bitten faces and lumpy bodies only a mother could love. But craft is often a genre made up of equal parts love and incompetence, failure and ambition.

??
And ''Plush'' is a show that recognizes the potential repulsiveness and obsession of handicrafts pushed to the bitter limits of cute.

??
Plush. ''Through Nov. 26. Young Blood Gallery, 629 Glenwood Ave. Wed. and Fri., noon-6 p.m.; Thurs., noon-7 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., noon-5 p.m. 404-627-0393. [http://www.youngbloodgallery.com/|www.youngbloodgallery.com].''"
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??
Plush is, like the best endeavors at Young Blood, a group effort uniting 25 local and national artists and reflecting the esprit de corps that consistently defines the space. The communally crafted installation entails fabric covering floors, walls, ceilings and every available surface — like a Willy Wonka paradise where everything is edible.

??
Young Blood co-owner Kelly Teasley has created a soft sculpture fence to welcome viewers into Plush's playpen space. In this exhibit's downy answer to our hard-surfaced reality, cushy palm trees and fabric stumps grow from the floor, smiling raindrops and angry storm clouds hang from the rafters and the soft landscape is occupied by enough bunnies, bears, ponies and monkeys to outfit a dozen tween bedrooms.

??
You remove your shoes to protect the foam pathway and stroll amid the Pee-Wee Herman soft sculpture environment where every anthropomorphized critter wears a fetching grin. The tactile payoff is immediate — and affirmation that the sensation of touch is one of the often-unexplored features of the contemporary art experience.

??
One of the most deliciously wacky tableaux occupies the installation's immediate right, where a gaggle of artist Missy Kulik's 1960s-style wiener dogs stage a hootenanny camp-out beneath quilt square mountains, roasting fabric s'mores over a fabric fire. The show's vibe is infectiously giggle-inducing, as each turn yields some new perversion of cute. Raoul de la Cruz crafts grinning "Fangs" and "Tooth Fairies" that suggest that wet noses, wagging tails and appendages are not necessities in cuteness' vernacular. A woman uniquely talented at making everything from toast to chocolate donuts into totems of huggability, for Plush, Pennsylvania's Heidi Kenney offers a "Sad Tree Stump" shedding a poignant fat tear, a plush ice cream truck, TV, banana and other surreal softies.

??
Some of Plush's crocheted critters have the flea-bitten faces and lumpy bodies only a mother could love. But craft is often a genre made up of equal parts love and incompetence, failure and ambition.

??
And Plush is a show that recognizes the potential repulsiveness and obsession of handicrafts pushed to the bitter limits of cute.

??
Plush. Through Nov. 26. Young Blood Gallery, 629 Glenwood Ave. Wed. and Fri., noon-6 p.m.; Thurs., noon-7 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., noon-5 p.m. 404-627-0393. www.youngbloodgallery.com.             13023084 1263959                          Play Time "
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Article

Wednesday November 15, 2006 12:04 am EST
Plush at Young Blood Gallery | more...