Sunday, August 26, 2012

True Blue - Simone Gad & Ingres

I was knocked out by this beautiful painting/collage by the LA artist Simone Gad, who is participating in the True Blue show organized by Charity Burnett at Sangria Fine Arts (LA, opening 8/31/12). True Blue features small pieces by over 60 artists who have become friends, or have invited friends, through social media.

Simone Gad. hommage a ingres painting collage.
copyright simone gad 2012/all rights reserved
First, a little context from Simone about her body of work: "I started out as a fabric artist in 1969, and then moved to making collages on fabric/then collage and assemblage with painting about hollywood icons during the 1970s thru the 1980s. In the 1990s, I started to incorporate art history collage elements into my works -acrylic on canvas with objects, then self-portraits, the holocaust clowns with pinups series from 1998 to 2012, small pinups with building facades also, the art history collages in the 2000s as well as making paintings without collage, continuing my self-portraits series, and now - fudogs paintings, chinatown, and pinups with rescue animals drawings on paper".

As an art historian, I was fascinated with the inclusion of Ingres in this work. Simone explained her concept, beginning with the title: "The painting I have in True Blue is an homage to Ingres and the Princess - hence the title - Hommage a Ingres.I have always loved art history and have incorporated from time to time collage elements in my paintings of building facades re Belgium Art Nouveau - since Brussels is my birthtown; Old Los Angeles structures - ala Victorians, Craftsman homes, some Art Deco, and Chinatown Plaza pagodas, etc... in my funky expressionist style of heavily built up acrylic in layers on canvas. I love Ingres' paintings and bought this postcard of Princesse Albert de Broglie during one of my trips to the Metropolitan Museum in NYC, which I incorporated into one of my buildings of Atwater Village/Los Feliz area of So California. The Princess wearing her lavish blue gown, inspired me to make my building facade in the same shade of blue".

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (French, Montauban 1780–1867 Paris). BĂ©arn (1825–1860), Princesse de Broglie. 1851–53, Oil on canvas, 47 3/4 x 35 3/4 in., Robert Lehman Collection, 1975, 1975.1.186 Metropolitan Museum of Art.
I have always loved this painting, and took this occasion to refresh my memory of it. The Princess, who was renowned for her elegance and beauty, sat for one of the last commissioned female portraits Ingres undertook. He also painted her sister-in-law, the Comtesse d'Haussonville in 1845 (hanging right down the street at the Frick Collection). Unfortunately, the princess died of consumption at age 35. Her husband kept this portrait in a prominent place, draped with dark curtains in tribute to his lost love. Simone and I discussed this story, and agreed that this kind of loyalty is the very meaning of "True Blue."

Simone has an upcoming solo show (her 4th) at the L2kontemporary gallery (Hill Street, Downtown LA) January 5 - February 9, 2013. This page from her previous show at the Bleicher/GoLightly Gallery features a great photo of her studio. Other works by Simone can be seen on the bluecanvas site.

Karrie Hovey & The Other New York 2012

Karrie Hovey, an SFSU MFA alumni who just finished a residency here in SF at Recology (previous post here), has just installed her work at the Everson Museum of Art (Syracuse and Onondaga, NY September 22, 2012 - January 6, 2013), for their multi-venue biennial The Other New York: 2012. Shown in at 14 participating venues (museums, outdoors, & other public spaces) the project is intended to showcase artists in Upstate & Central New York, and encourage interaction between the artwork and the public.

Karrie's work builds on some of the past projects I've loved, such as Mum, a piece she began while doing her residency at Recology, utilizing the endless supply of discarded books they received.

Karrie Hovey, Utica, NY (b. St. Johnsbury, VT, 1971).
Mum (detail), 2012. Site-specific installation, salvaged books, variable.
About Mum Karrie says: "In many parts of the world the chrysanthemum (a mum) is seen as a flower of mourning and grief, while in other cultures it is a joyous flower of rejuvenation. I have constructed a field of chrysanthemum inspired forms from discarded books. Playing off an alternate definition of “mum” as a command to not speak, the repeated pattern mourns the loss of physical books and laments the silencing of their content. On the other hand, given the current efforts made to digitize all printed volumes, many written works that historically have had limited availability are giving a new life. I see books as a symbol of potential and knowledge, a resource for personal and societal growth. I reference a circular trunk-like form to suggest the forests of trees destroyed in the creation of the books".

Karrie Hovey. ...the Garden Grows : Cultivate Garden 1
In addition, she installed ...the Garden Grows : Cultivate Garden 1, a work that reuses cast-off materials from retail stores (such as wrapping paper and shopping bags) to construct a fantasy garden.  Encypher is a map project based on the museum's floor plan, area freeways, and other local topography, with materials supplied by Golden Artist Colors and The Sam and Adele Golden Foundation. She explains her process in the video below:

if this video isn't working right, click here to see it on YouTube.

Karrie Hovey. Encypher.
See more of Karrie's work on her web site.