Press Release: Matakia
“Spontaneous Combustion II”
November 3rd – November 21st, 2015
Opening Reception:Nov. 5th 6PM to 8PM
Chelsea, NY – Viridian Artists is pleased to present “Spontaneous Combustion II,” a retrospective by Matakia (aka Diane Root) at Viridian, 548 West 28th Street, from November 3rd to November 21st. In celebration, a special reception for the artist will be held on Thursday, November 5th, from 6PM to 8PM.
Described by some as a “latter-day Abstract Expressionist,” Matakia’s work is primarily executed in acrylics on canvas or paper, often with touches of pen and ink, collage and mixed media. Of French and American parentage, she grew up and was schooled in the US and Europe, graduating from the Sorbonne. Later, she studied briefly at the Beaux Arts in Paris and the Annex of the Bellas Artes in San Miguel de Allende in Mexico. Still, she feels largely self-taught as an artist.
She was brought up in an artistic environment replete with artists, musicians, and writers, thanks to her father, a journalist whose work made the world of fine arts and travels to foreign lands an integral part of the landscape of her childhood.
The artist has traveled the world and glimpses of all that she has experienced can be seen in the lifetime journey that is her art. By eleven, after a transatlantic solo trip on an ocean liner, she disembarked in the South of France, and knew that she was and would always be, a painter.
Though Matakia does not show often in gallery settings, she has had one-woman shows in Athens, Greece; Saudi Arabia, the Ivory Coast, Australia and the US, as well as in her native France. This will be her first solo exhibit at Viridian.
“I am,” she says, “what the French call une illustre inconnue (“an illustrious unknown”). For Matakia “Art is a voyage in and of itself; it is more than what you see at first glance, it is what the mind’s eye glimpses in the distance. It is not only where you are, but where you are transported”.
Hardly a household name by her own admission, her works are nevertheless to be found in private collections all over the world. Viridian is pleased to be sharing the works of this fascinating artist.
Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday 12-6PM
For further information, please contact the gallery at email@example.com
or call 212 414 4040
Press Release: Filippo M. Prandi
Filippo M. PRANDI
“The Deceitful Distortion of Time”
Chelsea NY: Viridian Artists is pleased to present Filippo M. Prandi’s first solo exhibit at Viridian. A filmmaker and photographer, the artist will be present on Thursday October 8th. The exhibit will continue from October 6- 31.
His first discovery of the creative possibilities in photography occurred in a college photography class in his hometown of Bologna, Italy. The revelation of photography’s magic was not from taking photos, for picture-taking was not part of that experience, but instead he was inspired by the Man Ray photo of Duchamp posing as his alter-ego Rrose Selavy. For Prandi, this photo opened the door to the possibilities of creating images that go beyond reality- images that take photography into the realm of fantasy & the limitless realities that artists create. Later, after coming to NYC, where he has resided for the past 8 years, he attended the NY Film Academy and put the final touches on his formal photographic education.
Filippo Prandi is primarily a filmmaker who became engrossed with still photography just two and a half years ago. He uses a 35mm camera to create his own reality with long exposures, a tripod & flash light. With these basic tools, he developed a technique, which he calls “light painting & flight brushing”. He’s not interested in the digital image or Photoshop, but instead still uses 35mm film, light and time to create his alluring, sometimes mysterious, sometimes erotic, sometimes ghostly imagery. Prandi sees himself as being akin to a farmer planting and harvesting seeds, but instead the artist he is “harvests” these “portraits” as moments sown in time.
Filippo’s intention is to create scenarios whose characters dwell in a world he has created for them as a director creates an actor’s world. An accomplished and prize-winning filmmaker who’s also working on his second film, Viridian looks forward to sharing these exciting and imaginative photographic images that tell a story in every image.
Gallery hours: Tuesday through Saturday 12-6PM
For further information please contact the gallery at 212 414 4040 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Press Release: Director’s Choice
“FROM VIRTUAL TO ACTUAL 4″
September 8- October 3, 2015
Opening reception Thursday, September 10, 6-8pm
Angelique Anderson * Craig Cheply * Cynthia Fleury * Peter Hiers * Jun Ogata * Srividya Kannan Ramachandran *
Len Rosenfeld * Kimberly Rowe * Christopher Ruane *Jimmy Salmon * Shawn Saumell * Michael Wolf * Jave Yoshimoto * Renna Mae Zimmer
Chelsea NY: Viridian Artists is pleased to present ” Director’s Choice: From Virtual To Actual 4″, curated by Vernita Nemec, the gallery director, featuring a selection of artists who entered our 25th International Juried Competition in 2014. The exhibit extends from September 8th to October 3rd, 2015 with an opening reception Thursday, September 10, 6-8PM.
Each of the 14 artists in this diverse exhibition has her or his own personal obsession that serves as the starting point of their search to transform their inner concerns into reality. The results of transforming these realities into art, remains open to each viewer’s interpretation and becomes another translation of the virtual into the actual.
Although these artists were not “winners” of Viridian’s 24th International Juried Competition, their art is uniquely interesting. Viridian’s Director’s Choice Exhibitions arise from one of Viridian’s primary missions: to provide meaningful exposure to under-known artists of all ages whose art merits wider attention.
For Angelique Anderson art is zen. She is inspired by the world around her, but perhaps the strongest influence comes from the computer which frees her to experiment with layering and dimension, allowing her to morph realism with fantasy. She is a digital artist particularly fascinated with the developing interactive games. The work in this exhibit is part of her portrait series. Her “Orishas Garden” project is in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institute and the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
Craig Cheply considers his ongoing “100% Natural” Series that he began in 2006 to be “Contemporary visual statements of the observed socio/polit/enviro/econo/relig/geo/natural landscapes playing out on the domestic and world stages daily as subject matter. ” He goes on to say “my artworks are rendered with the triple entendre entity “Natural History (Certified)” being the classification, subject matter and medium. Natural History tells the story of our living earth. It comprises the systematic observation, classification, interpretation, and description of the biosphere and its inhabitants. Natural History is a primary component of culture.”
Cynthia Fleury’s “Morning After the Night Before” is from a Series of Images taken in New Orleans in 2015. The image was captured at about 7 am in the French Quarter after a boisterous night in March. The machine in the middle of the street, the man in the chartreuse jacket with the hose, and the bleak surroundings made this scene other-worldly to the artist who felt it to be an important moment in time to capture. The early morning light adds much to the bleakness of the moment.
Peter Hiers is a cultural observer, questioning our ultimate future as we humans consume increasingly while our resources decrease. Since 2004, he has gathered the remnants of tires from highways to create sculpture from the detritus of transportation, symbolically making statements about our vulnerable networks, using the fragments of ripped rubber to metaphorically illustrate the tensions between nature and our consumer culture.
Jun Ogata’s “Shadow of Flower”, an acrylic on canvas painting, was inspired by the beauty and philosophy of Japanese gardens. For the artist, the world of Japanese gardens – “Zen Garden” or “Karesansui (Japanese Rock Garden) – shows the various changes created by time and the flow of the seasons. Here, the artist is expressing in a new way and untraditionally, the legendary Japanese colors that appear through aging.
Srividya Kannan Ramachandran’s photograph “Standing alone Amidst the Crumbling Ruins” appears deceptively simple in its composition and focus. When asked, the artist’s comment forces the viewer to look more deeply into the image, stating “as the stage decays naturally and awaits a final collapse, a small transparent object stands defiantly waiting for deliverance. ”
Leonard Rosenfeld who died in 2009 was associated with a group of artists known as the New York School. A narrative artist whose art consistently reflected the news and events around him, he studied at the Art Students League and showed at such prominent galleries as Ok Harris. This piece was created during the Mad Cow epidemic, so features a mad cow. The blue angel of love adds a note of whimsy, or perhaps that love and life go on, even through the pestilences of our times. That said, Rosenfeld was also an Expressionist – in his words “painting with a combination of abandon and discipline.” Supposedly, all that mattered to him was the material and the craft of message, not the message. But in the end, his art nearly always carries a strong message as well.
Kimberly Rowe states “My paintings are derived through an attitude of exploration, improvisation, and experimentation; they are sort of like visual jazz, but with elements of funk, blues, rock, alternative, punk, classical, and world music all being part of the vocabulary.”
Several years ago Jimmy Salmon began a series of photographs based on the 16th century still life paintings of the Dutch master Pieter Claesz. He says “I tried to photographically replicate his use of light, shadow, composition and muted pallet. The Berkemeyer and the quill were gifts from my wife, intended to be used in the series. Because of the quill, the idea for this photograph, The Letter, came into being. ”
Shawn Saumell‘s photograph, “New World Order is a photograph of a constructed tableau landscape, assembled in his studio from found objects within nature. For the artist, “This hyper real image breaks [away from] the traditional purpose of photography, while questioning perceptions of reality.”
Michael Wolf‘s “Hermes” is from a series of sculpture in which the artist re-contextualizes Greek myths. As the god of transitions and borders, and the patron of invention, moving freely between the worlds of the mortal and the divine, Hermes corresponds with the pursuit of artistic vision. The artist says “Pushing borders is an area in which artist(s) reside. The cast of my foot represents the corporeal realm. The painted block of wood that connects the two pieces is from an old shoemakers workbench that relates to the winged sandal that Hermes is associated with. The shoemaker’s block separates the divine portrait of Hermes from the worldliness of the cast of my foot with the steel chain connecting the two images.”
Jave Yoshimoto says “My work takes on the ephemerality of news and information and how the emotions we bring to each tragedy in the news cycle are swept away by the wave of information that floods the media. I address this social amnesia through my art with the work acting as a social memory for tragic events so quickly forgotten in our information age.” In his Disaster Series, he re-explores his Japanese heritage through the depiction of events such as Fukishima by creating his images with traditional Japanese woodblock print techniques inspired by 18th century Japanese artists. His art can currently be seen in numerous exhibitions in the US & Germany.
Renna Mae Zimmer sees the act of collaging to be akin to painting with paper. The work in this exhibit entitled “The Hand”, is based on an old family photograph.
Gallery hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 12 – 6 p.m.
For further information please contact Vernita Nemec, Gallery Director
New Artist: Du Lin
New Artist Joins Viridian: Filippo Prandi
Press Release: Viridian’s 26th International Juried Competition
Viridian Artists’ 26th International Juried Competition
Lauren Hinkson, Curator, Solomon R Guggenheim Museum
June 30 – July 18, 2015
Opening reception Thursday, July 2, 6-8pm
1st prize Edith Hillinger 2nd prize William Tarnowski 3rd prize Marcela Florido
Honorable mention Phillip Stearns
Lani Asuncion * Holly Coley * Leila Dorne * Claire Elliott * Bryan Florentin *Jeffrey Haupt * Linda Jacobs * Sassoon Kosian * Kerry Lessard * Anne Lindberg *
Benjamin Madeska * Russell Mason * Bob Matthews *Robert Moran * Joseph O’NeillDale M Reid * Carolyn Rogers * Shushana Rucker * Rafael Santiago * Heajung Shin *Casey Snyder * Chris Vanden Broeke * Susan Wolfe
Chelsea: Viridian Artists Inc. is pleased to present our 26th International Juried Exhibition curated by Lauren Hinkson, Curator, Guggenheim Museum, New York. The exhibition opens June 30th and continues through July 18th, 2014. In celebration, a special reception will be held on Thursday, July 2nd, 6-8pm. We are especially pleased that the curator will be present to give out awards to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners of this important competition that brings the art of emerging and under-recognized artists to the attention of museum curators.
Over 300 artists submitted nearly 1500 submissions. The competition selection was especially difficult for there were so many outstanding submissions and the nature of art in our world today encompasses a wide variety of methods, materials and conceptualizations of what art is in today’s world.
In her curatorial statement, Hinkson wrote “It was rewarding to engage with images of such a wide range of artworks, all reflecting the diverse interests and passions of their creators. The task of selecting only a handful of pieces from among these submissions was as daunting as it was eventually rewarding. I am fortunate to work as a curator, and my choices were informed partly by my professional experiences establishing connections between historical artwork and contemporary practices. Ultimately, however, it was the strength of a composition, the boldness of a palette, or the originality of a concept evident in a given image that caught my eye.”
As always, Viridian makes an effort to expand the opportunities of more artists’ being seen so the gallery Director’s Choices will also be viewable in digital form. We feel it important to tangibly demonstrate that curatorial choice is often as much about personal taste as it is about the “quality” of the art.
Director’s Choice to be presented digitally
Margery Freeman Appelbaum * Richard Barlow * Ken Boylan * Jan Brandt * Chris Vanden Broeke Claire Elliott * Ed Herman * Gary Horn * Jim Jacobs * Linda Jacobs *Lynne Johnson * James Kelson * Cindi Lewis * Marcia Lloyd * Paxton Maroney * Emmanuel Monzon * Eric Mueller * Andrea Razook * Scott Reeds
Alan Richards *Marilyn Richeda * Janet Rossi * Christopher Ruane * Shushana Rucker * Alex Sewell * Ashley Shellhause * Renata Stein * Paula Swisher * Maxim Tzinman *Rebecca Willhoft * Matthew Vidmar * Larry Zdeb
Press Release : Matthias Merdan
JUNE 9 – JUNE 27, 2015
Reception Thursday JUNE 11, 6-8pm
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Chelsea: Viridian Artists is pleased to present “SILLY SCULPTURE”, an exhibition of new sculpture and prints by MATTHIAS MERDAN opening June 9th and continuing through June 27th with a reception on Thursday, May 21st, 6-8PM.
These days we often wonder how the discipline of visual arts could still have a perceivable chance of making an impact. Has art reached the end of its evolutionary possibilities? Is it stagnated in its existing forms?
Artist Matthias Merdan’s answer is “Silly Sculptures”. These slightly larger than life sculptures of figures bring together what the artist calls the “five futilities or “irrelevances”. The artist has carefully contemplated their actions, gesticulations, positioning, colors and outfits as unified contradictions, so that the sculptures radiate absurdity and clumsiness.
The “actions” of the Silly Sculptures are characterized by everyday banality, unfettered by pathos, purity and compulsions. Their actions are not the gesticulations of heroes but instead they stand shakily and illogically. Their colors too are inconsistent. Using chalk, lacquer, oil, acrylic and adhesive tape, the artist wants to prevent any suspicion that he is creating a cohesive design and deliberately leaves his traces of fingerprints and wipes. It’s as if Merdan is attempting to provoke us to conduct comparisons with the possible and to reorganize our knowledge.
Accessories of hats and gasmasks are more than just additional visual attributes, but serve as a metaphor for the extreme distance he has traveled from the mind, tradition and world of the beholder.
Merdan’s sculptures are mobile, changeable, and anatomically adjustable, responding to space as well as to situations. With the sculpture are prints and photos of their passing poses. With these highly expressive, but dissonant works, Merdan aims to bend the common clichés of aesthetics in an effort to bet on the inexhaustible potential of the visual arts. With these creations, he seizes the innovative opportunity and evolutionary possibilities inherent in sculpture and consequently creates a novel form of expression.
Mattias Merdan lives in Zurich, Switzerland and is presenting his first solo exhibit at Viridian. He has a Master of Philosophy and Theology from Bamberg University in Germany. In 2000, he did a residency in Nafpaktos, Greece to study iconography and from 2006-2011, he led international workshop in the manufacturing of carbon and fiberglass. He has been a professional sculptor since 2008.
We look forward to your presence at the event of “Silly Sculptures”.
For further information please contact the gallery at 212-414-4040 or email@example.com
or view our website: viridianartists.com.
PRESS RELEASE: Bernice Faegenburg, “Nature’s Essence”
April 28-May 16th, 2015
Reception: Thursday, May 7, 6-8 pm
Chelsea: Viridian Artists is pleased to present “NATURE’S ESSENCE ” a series of new paintings on paper by Bernice Faegenburg. The exhibit extends from April 28 – May 16th, 2015 with a reception: Thursday, May 7, 6-8 pm.
Bernice Faegenburg is an artist who enjoys experimentation and exploring a variety of media, especially all things Asian. She recently began a serious study of Asian Brush Painting, but traces of brush work have always been a part of the sensuous line in her drawings and compositions.
The focus in these images is on nature and its essence that spring’s annual rebirth brings. Living near the sea and removed from the urban environment, Faegenburg’s art always is filled with the resplendence of nature, even when she focuses on only the clouds drifting by. Though she has often worked on canvas in the past, combining sketches, notes, images, photographs, the new work she has made for this exhibition is primarily Asian brush work on rice paper. In some works like “The Mist”, the composition & imagery is quite traditional but in others, like “Magnolia” & “Harbinger of Spring” the lines are more uniquely drawn, mixing the Western and Eastern line and depiction.
Faegenburg approaches her art instinctively, allowing her imagery to emerge and grow out of her experience and intuition. For her, the most important part of art making is the doing, for she is an artist to whom process is as important as the end result. Fortunately however, the end result is always both glowingly personal as well as instinctually beautiful. Picking a path and following wherever it leads her has always been Faegenburg’s artistic choice, for she is a “traveler” in both her art and her life. Organic fragments of memories and images are her palette as much as color is and her sketchbook jottings are juxtapositions that become creative “conversations” of color and shapes on canvas and rice papers. “Swimming” with the black blossoms above the fish swimming below both feel to be rare and imaginary moments that traveled from the artist’s hand through the brush and finally to the paper.
The artist did undergraduate work at the Tyler School of Fine Arts and Temple University in Philadelphia, where she studied printmaking & egg tempera pinting in the Renaissance method. After graduation, she moved to New York and studied at the National Academy of Design and received a Masters Degree at C.W. Post College, where she studied painting and graphics with New York abstract painter Robert Yasuda and later, Oriental philosophy and its relationship to painting with Jerry Okimoto. Her art will again be included in the prestigious Florence Biennial. The influence of Asian art and thought has always been an influence in her work.
Gallery hours Tuesday – Saturday 12-6 PM
PRESS RELEASE: Angela Smith, Augmented Her: AFAIK: ATM Apr 7-Apr 25
April 7- April 25, 2015
Reception Thursday April 9, 6-8PM
Artist’s Talk Saturday April 11, 4-6PM
Chelsea NY: Viridian Artists is pleased to present Angela Christine Smith’s first solo exhibit at Viridian. A winner in Viridian’s Juried Photography exhibit in 2011, the artist will be present at both the reception on Thursday April 9th, 6-8pm & on Saturday April 11, 4-6PM when she will talk about her fascinating photographic response to our future. The exhibit will continue from April 7th to April 25th.
The future has arrived and the title of Angela Smith’s first solo exhibition at Viridian is a testament to that reality. When asked what the meaning of the title was, the artist replied that the title “is an indication of where I am at in this moment.” Expanded it reads: “Augmented her: as far as I know; at this moment”.
Angela Christine Smith specializes in Photographic Practices that utilize Advanced Darkroom (Analog) Techniques and expand into Advanced Digital Practices. As an artist she also specializes in printmaking techniques that inform her overall artistic practice. Through these mediums she explores her identity as a subject and her interaction with the photographic machine. Through the use of self-portraits, selfies and the manipulations of digital practices, she is exploring those unseen moments where her relationship with life, with the camera, and with the photograph (as object) is evidence of the materiality of identity.
Smith is interested in the medium of photography and the relationship created between the camera and the “self” or the subject, which is “her”. Like the movie with Scarlett Johansson, her MFA show was titled “Her”, but rather than a body being just a digital voice, Smith explores through her work, the stasis of the image created from a live body – her own – and making it stasis or immovable. At the same time, she is exploring the materiality of the photographic process as she exposes the body (and self) as an object of stasis.
The greater identity of “her” (her is the self cut from time when the camera cuts the body from the self and contains it within the photograph) is not limited to the photograph. “Her” is now digital and larger than ever before. “Her” now takes on this post-Internet art by taking on the challenges of digital dualism – that space where we conceptualize the digital and the physical; the on and off -line realities.
Identity is now a cyborg self comprised of a physical body and a digital one. Augmented Her is the expansion of identity beyond the photographic object and time. Augmented Her is now in constant dialog with both, and in the digital realm the glitch, (the glitch art, the digital interruptions) interrupts the viewer and reminds us that “her” is Afk (away from keyboard) ATM (at the moment).
So the identity is expanding and what is Afk vs IRL? (Away from keyboard; in real life).
The artist received her BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design in photography and printmaking and her MFA in Photography and Integrated Media from Ohio University.
Press Release: Art from Detritus: 20th Anniversary Invitational
Curated by Vernita Nemec
March 3rd- April 4th, 2015
Reception: Thursday March 5th, 6-8pm
Marcia Bernstein * Taisha Brehaut * Valentina Celada * Ursula Clark * May DeViney * Fred Gutzeit * Sandra Guze * Ed Herman * Elizabeth Featherstone Hoff * Kathleen King * Bernice Sokol Kramer * Iris Lavy * Lee Lee * Kathy Levine * Lynne Mayocole * * Garry Noland * Peggy Noland * Carol Quint * Elizabeth Rhoades Read * Norman Reid * Diane Root * Leonard Rosenfeld * Helaine Soller * Renata Stein * Stephen Soreff * Suprina *Judy Thomas * Sam Wiener * Larry Zdeb * Philip Zuchman
Chelsea NY: Viridian Artists is pleased to present the exhibit “Art of Detritus: 20th Anniversary Invitational” featuring fine art made primarily from trash. The heart of this exhibit is the message of the three R’s: Reduce/Reuse/Recycle. The exhibit will open March 3rd and continues through April 4th with a reception March 5, 6-8pm.
“Art From Detritus” serves to enrich the dialogue between art and the lives of ordinary people because we all have too much trash. By focusing on recycling or “upcycling” as their method and source for creating, these artists have made their artmaking serve as both a message and inspiration. This exhibit reaches beyond the art world, serving as a message not only about art, but also about recycling for the good of the environment.
Since 1994, the changing group of artists in this exhibit has opened dialogues with viewers about the importance and usefulness of art as something beyond decoration. Artists often cannot afford studio assistants, expensive materials and equipment for art making, but see beauty in the discarded and these artists have realized this to creatively deal with the problem of too much trash.
“Art from Detritus”, or art from waste, was first conceived and curated by Vernita Nemec, an artist/ curator in 1994 in Portland Oregon during the annual conference of the National Recycling Coalition (NRC). It was presented in the lobby of a recycled Sears Roebuck building & corporate head quarters for municipal waste & recycling there. Since then, the exhibit has re-occurred with funding from the Kauffman Foundation, the Puffin Foundation and sponsorship by the NRC. The exhibit was presented in Pittsburgh at the Westinghouse headquarters, the Museum of Arts & Crafts and the AIA; in Kansas City MO at the Linda Hall Library of Science, Rockhust College & the Writer’s Place.
Phoenix AZ, Turners Falls MA and NYC have all been Detritus exhibition sites since. In NYC, Detritus exhibits have occurred at the Henry Street Abrams Arts Center, Gallery 450, Viridian Artists, Synagogue for the Arts, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Farleigh Dickinson University and the Williamsburgh Art Center. See more information and images of past Detritus shows at www.ncognita.com.
Vernita Nemec, a.k.a. Vernita N’Cognita, is a visual (“The Endless Junkmail Scroll”) & performance artist presenting pieces like “Dress” (of catfood can lids) performed at Dance Theater Workshop (DTW), a curator, the director of Viridian Artists and former Executive Director of Artists Talk on Art (ATOA). She is also on the board of Advisors of ATOA & Soho20.
Viridian Artists, Inc.