Art Gallery Preview: ReVISIONED Ugly Beautiful
Kevin Johnson, March 1, 2012
Four area artists (and one special guest artist) invite you to take another look at traditional ideas concerning ugliness and beauty. “ReVISIONED Ugly Beautiful” features the photography of Tim Davis, paintings by Betty Ross, sculpture by Pat Musick and LuDel Walter’s collage painting and object art. The exhibition is celebrated at an opening reception on Friday, March 2 from 5-7:30 p.m. at PPCC’s Downtown Studio Art Gallery.
Laura BenAmots, gallery director, plans an exhibit each spring that examines the human relationship to the natural world. “ReVISIONED,” as BenAmots describes it, abstracts the connection between artist and nature: “The seed for this exhibit is the concept of recycling but the show is not about recycling.”
Each of the featured artists have portrayed death, decay and detritus and imbued these with animation, vitality and a sense of renewed life or rebirth. “The artist’s sensitive eye reframes those words, ugly and beautiful. The artist doesn’t necessarily think they’re taking something ugly to make it beautiful but rather observes something and sees it in a totally new way,” says BenAmots.
While looming alien landscapes and immense interstellar imagery are often evoked in Tim Davis’ large format photographs, many times the viewer is observing a tiny portion of some ordinary object, a small, rusty bit of automobile fender, perhaps.
“Tim Davis’ muse is found in what is discarded by society,” explains BenAmots. “Something that’s been in thetrash heap is really fertile source material for him and one of the things that’s so exciting is that he might choose a millimeter or half an inch of a surface and create a mammoth piece that celebrates the exquisite textural and color phenomenon.”
LuDel Walter is represented by two different but related bodies of work; One is a series of collage paintings and the other is a series of objects she calls books.
The sources of Walter’s work are in the shapes, forms and objects taken from her family’s land in Wyoming that in some way represent death. Removed from their contexts and delicately placed into a pristine environment, they take on a new life.
BenAmots adds, “Where in nature, an object might repel us, in this case, the object is preserved and so something that we don’t want to look at is suddenly pulling us in and we’re honoring it in a new way.”
Next is Betty Ross, “a very sophisticated abstract painter associated with UCCS’ art department.” For years BenAmots sought an occasion to invite Ross’ participation in a show at PPCC’s gallery. Her works in this show are exuberant medium-sized abstract paintings based on photographs Ross took of the Roma people more than a decade ago.
“What’s so wonderful is the leap between the source image and where the artist has taken it,” enthuses BenAmots. “It truly is a brand new visioning or view of these Roma lives that she witnessed and, in her case, [she’s] responding passionately […] to texture, color, rhythm and energy.”
Pat Musick, known widely for her work in the enamel arts, presents a different side of her vast artistic experience. Musick's contribution to "reVISIONED Ugly Beautiful" is a found-object sculpture entitled "Tower of Babel." This piece was comprised of material and objects found solely on her property near the Garden of the Gods.
Finally, special guest artist Dan Romano provides several of his whimsical "Art boxes" to the exhibit, encouraging and reminding attendees that they're being observed as well.
Come join the PPCC community and the artists of "reVISIONED" during a special opening reception on Friday, March 2, 5-7:30 p.m., Downtown Studio Art Gallery. Live music and refreshments will be provided for your enjoyment.