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Current Exhibit

Literature of the Non-Word
Literature of the Non-Word features the work of  Michelle Brown.  These paintings are part journal, essay and experiment in visual verse and story line which are meant to be more evocative than plot driven. Michelle makes use of and combines personal photographs, public images, film, literary and art historical sources. A place of intersection between intimate forms of expression and the media landscape, which has developed into a kind of nature in itself, is what the artist is interested in exploring. Also at work is the tendency, with digital photography, to document obsessively and to think less preciously about subject and composition, adding to a sense of randomness. For Michelle, these pieces speak in part to the plethora of imagery and information to which we’re exposed as well as the densely complex, fragmented and multi-layered mode of our lives.

The shape and size of the first diptych determined the rest in this series in its reference to a tall yellow notepad with ruled lines. Lines of image sequences are the primary structural element. The process usually involves working from the top of the painting downward, then back and forth between the two panels with very little editing, resulting in a cumulative set of decisions. Each painting can take three months or more to complete. Michelle’s interest is in building a theme by elaborating on a subject through pattern and repetition; for example in the painting, Matisse Rooms, she began with a collection of black and white thumbnail photos from the bibliography section of a book on Matisse. The photos consisted of collectors’ rooms and gallery spaces displaying Matisses’s work in the 1920’s and 30’s. From this handful of images that looked categorical and austere she wanted to create something that expressed intrigue, rhythm and musicality.

There is a tension in these paintings between maintaining a tonality, color scheme and personality to each painting while building the more incremental, linear narrative juxtapositions. They also move freely across time, placing images from the past in the vicinity of those in the present and allowing for metaphorical and allegorical instances to blossom.

 

The Literature of the Non-Word is on exhibit from September 5 to October 10, 2014.

Past Exhibits

The Investigations of the Horizon
 The Investigations of the Horizon featured the work of  Lara Loutrel. This exhibit consisted of black and white, abstract works which are partly inspired by atmospheric optical illusions and the awe and mystery that one feels as one observes something that defies physical reality.

Loutrel constructs concise, evocative objects.  By using lines that diverge slightly from true, or angles that are just off of right, she creates tense arrangements of irregular shapes and misleading depth cues, making it difficult for viewers to resolve the forms into dimensional space.  The pieces are unadorned and precise, but not without evidence of the artist’s hand.

The exhibition centered around the H Di. series.  Supported by a grant from the Artists’ Resource Trust, the series consists of eight geometric, black and white wall-mounted constructions.  They are each approximately 60″ x 12″ x 5″d and made from painted wood.  Additionally, there are works on paper, smaller multimedia pieces, and models for the wall mounted sculptures.

Lara Loutrel holds a BFA in Printmaking from the Massachusetts College of Art.  Her solo shows include exhibitions at the South End Branch Library (Boston) and the Sheetz Gallery (Penn State Altoona).  Her works have appeared in numerous group shows, among them The Boston Printmakers Selects: A Distillation from the 2013 North American Print Biennial (California),  New Art Center (Newton), Khaki Gallery (Boston), Carroll and Sons (Boston), MPG Contemporary (Boston), La Galería at Villa Victoria Center for the Arts (Boston), Mills Gallery (Boston), Printmaking Biennial of Douro (Portugal), Nachtundnebel 08 (Berlin), Gallery Aferro (New Jersey), Foundry Art Centre (Missouri), Hunterdon Museum of Art (New Jersey), Axis Gallery (California), and many others across the United States.

Loutrel was awarded an artist residency at the Bridge Guard (Slovakia), an Artist’s Resource Trust Grant (Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation), a Johnson & Johnson Purchase Prize (Hunterdon Museum of Art, New Jersey), a Gallery Award at MPG Contemporary (Boston), a Group 4 Award (Foundry Art Centre, Missouri), and a Juror’s Selection Honorable Mention in Printmaking (30th Bradley International Print and  Drawing Exhibition, Illinois).  Her work is included in the Boston Public Library’s print collection.

Utopia
Utopia features the work of  Santiago Hernandez. In this exhibition, Mr. Hernandez presented a series of paintings that build upon an idiosyncratic abstract language inspired by the work of M.C. Escher and Piet Mondrian. Mr. Hernandez creates works that allude to architectural forms and spaces with shifting perspectives and spatial ambiguities that result in a certain visual dissonance. While the work suggests a degree of ambiguity in terms of perspective and pictorial space, there is an inevitable balance between the various visual elements, bringing out the inner logic, harmony, and rhythm of each piece.  Mr. Hernandez’ mixed media sculptures reflect his deep interest in expanding upon the constraints of the Modernist grid and geometric abstraction and in exploring the potential for metaphorical meaning in work that is minimalist in its approach. Santiago Hernandez is a Boston-based artist who has exhibited his paintings, installations, and sculptures in museums and galleries both nationally and internationally. His work was recently included in solo exhibitions at The Simon Gallery (Morristown, NJ) and the Gordon Gallery (Boston). He has recently participated in group exhibitions at the VanDernoot Gallery (Cambridge), The Danforth Museum of Art (Framingham), the Ulrich Museum of Art (Wichita), and Gallery MC (New York). Santiago Hernandez is represented by Simon Gallery (Morristown, NJ), and is an adjunct Professor of Fine Arts at the Lesley University College of Art and Design.
reflection

reflection featured the work of  Jean Nicolazzo and  Jon Laustsen. Jean Nicolazzo’s paintings emphasize a focused, immersive attention toward stillness and how it can be captured in the fleeting moments of nature.  Her subject matter – often water – becomes both a formal and abstract consideration as she marks in time the varying, layering and dissolving strokes of color continually in flux that simultaneously remain. Jon Laustsen’s work is of a long-term project built up primarily from scaled-down building materials, such as 2×4 lumber, cast concrete foundations and drywall.  For this exhibition he is shifting both in scale and toward the interior to engage in both an appreciation and critique of art-worldliness, work trace-lines and home-fullness.  While composing certain rhythms of shift-making in perspective and time, he’s interested in merging what seem contradictions into a fricative, off-balanced, and potentially transcendent whole.

Time Pieces

Time Pieces featured the work of Quebec native Danielle Sauvé and Venezuelan-born Jesús Matheus. The sculptures presented by Sauvé in this exhibit manifest the material artifacts that result from, and represent, human behavior. Employed as fabric, clay is molded (or folded) by invisible hands in repetitive procedures. When this process is halted, midstream, an entirely new territory is opened up for speculation and revelation. The paintings by Matheus feature fresh and surprising uses of color applied to his experienced use of line and composition, resulting in a deep and sensitive geometry.

Richard Bertman

Richard Bertman is a registered architect and sculptor who has worked in the medium of welded steel and carved wood for 45 years. Through his sculptures, he explores the concept of change and how perspective is affected by change. Bertman frequently uses motors to create movement in his pieces, and even when the pieces are stationary, they express an implied movement. Humor and satire are hallmarks of his work.

About

The mission of the gallery @ ArtBlock is to provide high quality exhibitions of art and craft to the general public in order to contribute to the cultural vitality of the SOWA district and the City of Boston in general. With the exception of occasional special exhibits which may feature artists from other communities/geographic areas, preference shall be given to Boston-resident, BRA-certified artists.

In addition to hosting exhibits of art and craft, the gallery @ ArtBlock is available for rent for private events and gatherings.

Common Questions

> How do I show at the gallery?

The gallery@ArtBlock provides a contemporary and highly visible venue for art and crafts exhibits which normally run from four to eight weeks. Exhibits are selected through an annual call for proposals issued in the fall of each year, as well as by requests submitted on an open-call basis. If you are interested in exhibiting at the gallery, please contact us.

> How do I rent the gallery?

In addition to hosting high quality exhibits of arts and crafts, the gallery@ArtBlock is available for rental for private events and gatherings. Depending on the nature of the current exhibit, the gallery can accommodate up to 100 guests standing and up to 75 guests seated at tables. Moveable exhibit walls enable the space to be configured in different ways to accommodate private events. If you are interested in renting the gallery for a reception, fundraiser, cocktail party or other event, please contact us.

> What is the cost of renting or exhibiting at the gallery?

Fees for use of the gallery, whether for an event or an exhibition will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

>When is the gallery open?

The gallery@ArtBlock will generally be open to the public from 11:00 am to 4:30 pm on non-holiday weekdays, and during such evening and weekend hours as exhibiting artists are willing to staff the gallery, or pay for gallery sitters to staff the gallery.

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