Robert Ortbal’s sculptures explore essences. Not actual essences, as in molecular structures, but unfathomable things: like the physical structure of smells as they exist in psychological, emotional and sensory space.
With “wic wack”, Moses extends the abstract methods for which he is famous by running a kind of magical primitivism through a filter of Pointillism and Op. I left feeling like my molecular structure had been re-arranged.
In the Bay Area, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more exuberant, more imaginative painter than Linda Geary. Using oil, watercolor and spray paint, Geary has charted new frontiers in biomorphic abstraction.
With great economy and visual imagination, Koen creates elegant and deliciously open-ended works that tweak the orthodoxies of Minimalism while simultaneously engaging them with serious craft.
Fortes creates an electrically charged, claustrophobic atmosphere filled with high-def images and stupefying excess, where nothing makes sense and everything seems wrapped in a cocoon of white noise.
Talk about mixing macrocosmic and microcosmic views. Cornelia Schultz gives them to us from on high and from inside the planet’s nooks and crannies – all in the same picture.
Thiebaud’s 4th solo show at The Crocker since 1951 comes at a propitious time: the museum’s 125th anniversary, the opening of its tripled-in-size exhibition space and the artist’s 90th birthday.
Painting the same scene 54 times over a 6-month period, the artist documented an acutely observed interchange — between raw optical sensations and the mechanism by which they are translated into recognizable forms.
Nobody manufactures chaos like Judy Pfaff. She continuously reinvigorates sculpture by moving it into painterly, theatrical, performative and architectural directions. “Tivoli Gardens” extends this formidable tradition.
Are they magnified views of chemical reactions or a visions of the Earth’s crust from outer space? In Nellie King Solomon’s “beautiful pictures of terrible things” both possibilities appear simultaneously and with equal force.
When it comes to “non-traditional” materials, Vik Muniz is the undisputed king. Factory machinery, spaghetti, dust, peanut butter, sugar, chocolate and auto bodies – he’s used them all them to remake Old Masters. His latest targets: Hiroshige and Hokusai.
Here, at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains, in a gallery exhibition and in a series of site-specific works, seven artists of vastly different persuasions, examine the complex and often conflicted relationships we have with animals and nature.
Making the quotidian look strange and familiar was Henry Wessel’s specialty. His New Topographics cohorts recorded the bald facts of our surroundings and elevated their impact through repetition. Wessel didn’t need to. His photos are self-contained stories.
Before museums we had cabinets of curiosities: rooms that housed natural history, ethnographic artifacts and archeological remains. Twenty-one Bay Area artists explore those traditions.
Tired of big, banal theory-driven photos? A quiet counterinsurgency is gathering force. It’s composed of artists who are turning antiquated photographic methods to contemporary ends. Meet the antiquarian avant-garde.
Ever since Robert Rauschenberg built his legendary “combines” from cast-off junk sculptors have relied increasingly on found objects and industrial materials. Repurposed, they convey new meanings that go beyond associations we normally affix to them.