By Colleen Dougher
Broward kicks off its season with portraits of Andy Warhol and Elvis, skeletons to which people can relate, a shuttle to cool downtown Fort Lauderdale art venues and more.
1310 Gallery, Artspace Sailboat Bend Lofts, Fort Lauderdale
Fiber Optics, curated by Lisa Rockford, is a group exhibition by artists who used unexpected materials in art that combine traditional crafts (embroidery, crochet, knitting, weaving, sewing and quilting) with sculpture, installation and video art.
The works defy many people’s expectations of traditional crafts.
Kate Kretz, for example, has embroidered an image onto a white pillow, but don’t expect brightly colored flowery images or even embroidery thread. Kretz used human hair to delicately stitch a sepia-toned image that is dark and foreboding. Titled Threat of Heavy Weather, the hair-stitched work depicts an open mouth and inside of it, a scene that includes a house, telephone poles, trees and a tornado touching down from a dark, stormy sky.
Melissa Bush’s work is fueled by her longing for family and traditions, but Home Sweet Home does not reflect fond memories of Thanksgiving dinners. Instead, her crocheted scripts begin with lines such as “When I was four, I saw my mother cut up coke with a razor blade …” and “My father committed suicide when I was five …”
Fiber Optics features works by 42 artists who employ a variety of interesting processes that include dismantling and sewing together stuffed animal parts to create a creature whose multi-colored guts is spilling out (Kelly Boehmer), and utilizing an endoscopic camera to photograph spider veins and recreate the captured images in works stitched onto cow skin (Lisa Rockford).
The exhibition opened Sept. 21 and will be on exhibit during Art Fallout (5-9 p.m. Oct. 5) and at the closing reception (7 to 9 p.m. Oct. 11). Other upcoming shows at the artist collective include solo exhibitions by Sonia Baez-Hernandez (Oct. 19 through Nov. 8) and Josafat Miranda (Nov. 16 through Dec. 23).
1310 Gallery, located in a 37-unit loft space that houses emerging, mid-career and professional artists, is at 1310 S.W. Second Court, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-399-2737 or visit Sailboatbendartists.com.
Art and Culture Center of Hollywood
Francesco Lo Castro takes his Geometry series to new levels with Advent, the season opener at Art and Culture Center.
“This exhibition focuses mainly on geometric abstractions and the broad, emotional narrative that’s unleashed when using color and shape as a freeform tool of universal communication,” Lo Castro says of recent works that include acrylic, silkscreen, spray paint and epoxy resin. “This time, I’m refraining from building too specific a story in an attempt to cast a much wider net, tackling ideas that are not only global and cross-cultural in scope, but also invite the viewer to open up to a broader interpretative vernacular of myth, symbolism and language.”
As his techniques become more complex, Lo Castro has come to see his artistic process as an unpredictable adventure. “In order to achieve a near three-dimensional effect on a flat surface, I’m applying several more layers of resin, building up transparent color gradients to interact with each other in unexpected ways and giving the illusion of plasticity. Long hours are spent cutting out thousands of shapes from countless feet of masking tape and paper in an effort to solve these sometimes baffling visual puzzles (See his video of the process). I love not knowing where an emerging image is going to take me.”
Advent also includes video animations such as You Are Here, each based on one of Lo Castro’s paintings. “The animations were born out of a desire to see my paintings move, to draw out the inherent kinetic energy from these flat images and make the compositions come to life,” the artist says. “Eventually, the goal is to create a corresponding animation for each painting produced — a collection of scenes, which will hopefully grow into a full-length feature film.”
Other season highlights (all of which run along with smaller shows) include photographer Francie Bishop Good’s solo exhibition Not on Allen Street (Nov. 8-Jan. 12), the center’s big fundraiser exhibition/raffle Abracadabra, (Jan 24-March 16) and a solo show by 2013 South Florida Cultural Consortium fellowship recipient Agustina Woodgate (March 28-May 25).
Art and Culture Center of Hollywood is at 1650 Harrison St. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Opening reception admission is $10, and regular admission is $10, with a $4 discount for students, seniors and children ages 4 through 17. Free admission is offered on the third Sunday of each month. Call 954-921-3274 or visit Artandculturecenter.org.
Art Fallout, downtown Fort Lauderdale
Art Fallout, an annual four-hour art event held in conjunction with National Arts and Humanities Month, will kick off at 5 p.m. Oct. 5 with a free shuttle to art exhibitions at participating downtown Fort Lauderdale art venues. Here’s the lowdown:
• Girls’ Club will feature Art Fallout: Thinking on Paper, a one-night exhibition of unframed works on-paper by local artists whose submissions will be informally judged by South Florida art professionals and visitors who are encouraged to offer handwritten comments via color-coded Post-It notes.
• The Projects, one of many participating F.A.T. Village venues, will feature Rough and Tumble, an exhibition of sculpture, installations, video and mixed media works that explore “rough and tumble” — a theme that curator Lisa Rockford says is “characterized by violent, random, disorderly action and struggles, unrestrained, marked by bursts of destructive force or intense activity,” and “an unorganized collection or mixture of various things, described as raw, textured, volatile, and/or arbitrary, hybrid forms.”
• Art Fallout patrons can also make their own artistic contributions by participating in a 100-foot-long wall mural project organized by Young at Art’s contemporary art group Bedlam Lorenz Assembly. The project, which also includes a sculptural playground, takes place on a 13,000-square-foot lot at Andrews Avenue and Fifth Street.
Art Fallout also includes stops at Third Avenue Art District and Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale which will host the opening of Against the Grain: Wood in Contemporary Art, Craft and Design (See Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale listing for more info). All events run 5-9 p.m. Oct. 5 (with shuttle service from 5-10 p.m.) in downtown Fort Lauderdale. All Together Now, the Museum of Art’s group of visual arts and design enthusiasts (ages 21-39), will host the after-party with live music, art and cocktails from 8-11 p.m. on Museum of Art’s upstairs terrace. More details and a map can be found at Artfallout.blogspot.com.
Bear and Bird Boutique + Gallery, Lauderhill
While Bear and Bird was still confirming components of its 2013-14 season at presstime, its schedule will include its usual array of curated exhibitions and themed open-call mega-shows open to any local artist who can follow instructions.
Since opening the small and charming loft gallery at Tate’s Comics in 2007, Bear and Bird owner Amanda Magnetta Ottati has used the popular mega shows to give many locals their first shot at exhibiting and to scope out the sort of talented, hard-working artists she’ll invite back to participate in curated exhibitions. As such, the shows are a great place to find new artists and affordable works — a perfect fit for a gallery that encourages people to begin collecting art.
Bear and Bird’s next mega show, Mysteries of the Unexplained: Exploring the Supernatural, will feature small works about ghosts, demons, UFOs and other such subjects. It kicks off 6-10 p.m. Oct. 4 and runs through Nov. 9.
After that comes Small Stuff 7 (Nov. 17-Jan. 11), the gallery’s annual holiday exhibition that doubles as a cash-and-carry sale of affordable art works suitable for gift-giving.
Info on other upcoming Bear and Bird shows will be posted to the gallery’s site.
Bear and Bird Gallery is inside/upstairs at Tate’s Comics, 4566 N. University Drive, Lauderhill. Hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Call 954-748-0181 or visit Bearandbird.com.
Coral Springs Museum of Art
Glackens as Illustrator, an exhibition of paintings and drawings on loan from the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, is already underway at Coral Springs Museum of Art, as is Breast Cancer Awareness Body Painting Project, an exhibition of photographs of body-painted breast cancer survivors, and Americana Collection, Sandee Berman’s showing of a dozen colored pencil drawings that include depictions of homes, cottages and areas such as Fort Lauderdale’s Las Olas Boulevard and New Orleans’ Old French Quarter. All three events run through Nov. 9.
Other main gallery exhibitions include shows by André Desjardins, a Canadian sculptor and painter whose depictions of women have been described as dreamlike, serene and tranquil (Nov. 23 through March 15) and Henning Haupt, a South Florida Cultural Consortium fellowship recipient whose work explores the relationship between color, space and architecture (March 29 through May 17).
Thanks to an $8,000 grant from Funding Arts Broward, the museum will also kick off 2014 with Saturday Chautauqua: A Community Arts Infusion — its series of six Saturday afternoon events taking place January through March. Among them are Leah Brown and Peter Symon’s interactive demonstration/discussion about our relationship with technology and the art produced as a result (3 p.m. Feb. 8) and visual artist and poet Nzingah Oniwosan’s performance that explores Haitian folklore and African-influenced modern dance (March 29).
Coral Springs Museum of Art is at 2855 Coral Springs Drive, Coral Springs. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Admission is $6, $5 for seniors and tours, $3 for students and free for children under 12. The museum offers free admission every Wednesday. Call 954-340-5000 or visit Csmart.org.
Gallery 2014, Hollywood
Skeletons in the Closets: Day of the Dead is a fitting title for Heather Calderón’s solo debut of her skeletons at nonprofit organization Gallery 2014.
“After adding a small skeleton to my early paintings here or there, perched on a gate in a corner of a painting, it just felt complete,” the artist notes. “I slowly evolved into making them the centerpiece of my work. … I paint my skeletons in very vibrant colors, doing everyday activities from eating and drinking to dancing, expressing human emotions which is also indicative of ‘Day of the Dead’ art.”
Calderón loves that her skeletons, which include parents, sisters, brothers, dog lovers, chefs, doctors and artists such as Frida Kahlo, are something to which people can relate. “We all look like that underneath,” she says, “and I strive to connect and relate to people through my art.”
Her exhibition, which includes 25 to 30 paintings from large works on canvas to smaller paintings on wood, will run Oct. 17 through Nov. 16.
Other Gallery 2014 season highlights include Immersed (early December), Christina Major’s solo exhibition of portraits surrounded by handwritten words that represent her memories and thoughts as well as those of her subjects, and Face and Fabric (January), an exhibition of prints, sculpture and contemporary works in which Gallery 2014 co-founder Elizabeth Sanjuan and Amber Quimby explore “beauty, age, nurturing and growth” and the “assigned roles of women through the ages.”
Gallery 2014 is at 2014 Harrison St., Hollywood. Hours are 1-7 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and noon to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Admission is free. Call 954-505-3291 or visit Gallery2014.com.
Girls’ Club, Fort Lauderdale
Girls’ Club, a non-profit art foundation and alternative art venue, is billed as the only private collection in the world dedicated to exhibiting contemporary art by women. The foundation, which helps nurture the careers of female artists, was launched in 2006 by Francie Bishop Good and her husband David Horvitz whose collection includes paintings, drawings, photos and videos which are presented in curated themed annual exhibitions along with works from other collectors, artists and galleries.
The next such show, I think it’s in my head, will feature works that Miami artist siblings Monica and Natasha Lopez de Victoria, a.k.a. TM Sisters, selected from the collection for their vivid metaphysics,” according to Girls’ Club. The exhibition, titled for the words spelled out in Tracey Emin’s neon sculpture (from the collection), will include works by painter Harumi Abe, photographers Amy Stein and Brenda Ann Keanneally and others, as well as works that TM Sisters created after viewing the collection.
The exhibition will open 5-9 p.m. Nov. 10 and run through Sept. 30, 2014. Other Girls’ Club programming highlights will include a Spring 2014 Artist In Action! series that will include presentations by local artists Harumi Abe, AdrienneRose Gionta, Jiae Hwang and Dinorah de Jesus Rodriguez.
Girls’ Club, 117 N.E. Second St., Fort Lauderdale. Regular hours are 1-5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday. Admission is free. Call 954-828-9151, e-mail Info@girlsclubcollection.org or visit Girlsclubcollection.org.
Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale
Wing chairs are typically thought of as upholstered and comfy with a high back and “wings” that curve around the top. The original purpose of the wings was to provide protection from cold drafts while retaining the warmth from a nearby fireplace.
Sounds like a big warm hug on a cold night, right?
But what if that warm cozy chair was made of nothing but wood? That is the case with Martin Puryear’s A Skeumorphic Wing Chair (2012), which has the shape and design of an upholstered wing chair but is made from staved and carved pine with maple legs.
The chair is one of 90 works — including installations, sculptures, furniture and objects — in Against the Grain: Wood in Contemporary Art, Craft and Design, a show billed as an exploration of “the conceptual and technical trends in woodworking today.”
The show, organized by the Museum of Arts and Design, New York, will feature works that “challenge traditional applications of wood within the design and craft worlds.” The exhibition, which includes work by Sarah Oppenheimer, Marc Andre Robinson, Alison Elizabeth Taylor, Maarten Baas, Sebastian Errazuriz, Ursula von Rydingsvard and others, opens Oct. 12 and runs through Jan. 20.
Other Museum of Art season highlights include Roman Vishniac Rediscovered (Oct. 19 through Jan. 4), an exhibition of Vishniac’s “iconic photographs of Jewish life in Eastern Europe between the two World Wars,” Bob Adelman: Photographs of the Civil Rights Movement (Jan. 18 through May 4) featuring approximately 100 of Adelman’s photographs in a show that will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and William Glackens, billed as the first comprehensive Glackens exhibition in five decades (Feb. 23 through June 1).
Museum of Art is at One East Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. General admission is $14, $9 for seniors and members of the military, $7 for children 6 through 17, and free for kids 5 and under. Call 525-5500 or visit Moafl.org.
Studio 18 in the Pines, Pembroke Pines
About Face/Portraiture: A Reflection of Ourselves is billed as a show in which seven artists explore the intimacy of portraits.
Works will include Portrait of an Egghead, a “two-faced” portrait in which Barbara M de Varona expresses her ability to strike a balance between two roles, and Pretty, Diana Contreras’s series of realistic portraits of female elementary school students.
“For nine years I have been a public school art teacher working with children from low socioeconomic areas,” Contreras notes. “I have observed the self-esteem these students lack and I have especially witnessed it in girls. I selected a mixture of African-American, Haitian and Latin girls with varied skin tones, hair, features and ages. My desire was to expose my students to images that demonstrate beauty for all types of cultures worldwide. Through this study I sought to reveal the unique prettiness that every girl possesses and that beauty is everywhere.”
Other exhibiting artists include Buddah Funk, Alex Altidor, Elyse Roth, Todd Brittingham and Juan Carlos Bravo, who will exhibit portraits (Barack Obama, Michael Jackson, Andy Warhol, Trayvon Martin, Miami Heat players, Elvis and others), most of which he depicts in his trademark cabezone style (as characters with big heads and bulbous noses). In addition to the paintings, Bravo will exhibit mixed-media sculpted busts (intended to resemble Greek marble portraits) of homeless veterans. “They are my tribute pieces for our soldiers,” Bravo says.
About Face, the show’s title, is meant to draw attention to people in the military, curator Jill Slaughter explains. So in conjunction with the exhibition, local Vietnam veterans will exhibit letters, photos, objects and other war-related memories, and read (at 7:45 p.m. opening night) from their co-authored book, The Vietnam War: Black Bullets, Flashbacks & Untold Truths.
About Face opens 7-10 p.m. Oct. 4 and runs through Nov. 22. Other upcoming Studio 18 shows include Trash to Art (Dec. 6-27), an exhibition that focuses on the potential of things people throw away. The juried competition for works that are at least 75 percent comprised of repurposed or recycled material, is sponsored by Trash to Treasure, which runs a Fort Lauderdale warehouse offering re-usable material that artists, crafters and teachers can use for artworks.
Studio 18 is at 1101 Poinciana Drive, Pembroke Pines. Regular hours are 8:30 to 5 p.m. (but closed from 1-1:30 p.m.) Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free. Call 954-961-6067 or visit Ppines.com/studio18.
Young at Art Museum, Davie
Zap! Pow! Bam! The Superhero: The Golden Age of Comic Books, 1938-1950), a touring exhibition that originated at The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, examines the history and influence of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and other cultural icons. The Young at Art season opener (Oct. 12 through Jan. 5) will include related vintage art works, books, presentations, workshops, interactive displays and information about the artists behind graphic novels about superheroes.
The superhero theme will also dominate 8th Annual Young at Art Recycled Fashion Show (7 pm. Nov. 15). The event, titled Superheroes Restyled! will feature designs from teens who will use recycled materials to offer a “creative twist” on Batman, Wonder Woman and other superheroes after envisioning them using their superpowers to protect the environment. (Tickets to the fashion show, a benefit for YAA’s teen and at-risk youth programs. are $35)
Other YAA highlights will include: Counting Backwards, an exhibition featuring work by Rory Carracino, Margi Nothard, Andrew Nigon, Jillian Mayer and Samantha Salzinger (Nov. 9 through Jan. 1, with opening night tickets priced at $25), and Annual Interest, presented by Young At Art’s cooperative contemporary arts and alternative projects group, Bedlam Lorenz Assembly, The exhibition, which will includes works by Leah Brown, Martin Casuso, Pepe Mar and Ben Morey, opens 7:30 to 11 p.m. Jan. 24 (opening night tickets are $45 and art raffle tickets are $285) with food, music, cocktails, interactive art activities and a fundraiser raffle featuring works by more than 50 contemporary artists whose works will remain on exhibit through Feb. 21.
Young at Art is at 75 SW 121st Ave., Davie. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $13 for adults, $12 for ages 1 and up (need age) and seniors (62 and up), and free for members. Group rates are available. Call 954-424-0085 or visit Youngatartmuseum.org.