Tag Archives: Architecture

Aimless Winter Wandering

Wandering with wandering eyes brought us some fine amusements and nourishing reflections recently.

Marco Razo’s work at the Decatur branch library is worth pondering. The brush work suggests long experience, while the paintings’ forms seem to limit themselves to rudimentary symbolism.

Marco Razo, "Las Sandias"

Marco Razo, “Las Sandias”

Across the street from the library, Georgia Perimeter College’s 2-D design class is carrying out a participatory project consisting of two large chalkboards with writing prompts. See more at decaturseedthoughts.tumblr.com. Magnet for floating thoughts.

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Perimeter College design class project

Up in Buckhead, the relatively new Buckhead Atlanta development offers pleasing locations for selfies. Significant facade yardage is given to tasteful if unchallenging art. But then, you’re probably not there to be challenged except in your personal finance.

At Buckhead Atlanta on Buckhead Avenue near the Hermes store

At Buckhead Atlanta on Buckhead Avenue near the Hermes store

A pop-up gallery at Peachtree Road and East Paces Ferry looked promising but was closed temporarily, or perhaps they were “pop-down.” If the website is still up, you might see something useful at starkartpopupgallery.com. We could only peer through the glass door.

Just inside the pop-up appears to be a piece by Karl Kroeppler of Woodstock, GA.

Just inside the pop-up appears to be a piece by Karl Kroeppler of Woodstock, GA.

At the Alan Avery Gallery, Margaret Bowland’s oil paintings were exquisite and challenging. Her pictures of African American girls explore problems of human aesthetics, race, and the construction of identity. High-quality representational technique! On Bowland’s website she says, “I believe in that space—outside the golden circle inhabited by the princess.” We wish Bowland had stayed in the South.

Margaret Bowland, "The Tea Party"

Margaret Bowland, “The Tea Party”

The Bowland experience was heightened by our visit to Jackson Fine Art, with its preview of Gordon Parks’ photographs. Parks’ works are intimate, loving, unflinching, and therefore capture all sorts of dynamic beauties and contradictions.

Gordon Parks, "Untitled, Shady Grove, Alabama"

Gordon Parks, “Untitled, Shady Grove, Alabama”

We in these parts still have a lot of healing to do. Bless the healing image-makers and those who allow us to appreciate them in this place.

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Tripping and Bounding: Mary Engel at the W Hotel in Midtown

Spend a little time in a hotel lobby and you can feel like you just took a good, long trip.

That’s true even when the hotel lobby exhibits the same design sense as the typical drab room in a chain hotel.

An Engel animal, at right, prepares to bound into the W Hotel's lobby.

An Engel animal, at right, prepares to bound into the W Hotel’s lobby.

No fear of that at the W Hotel in midtown, which is now hosting an exhibit of Mary Engel’s sculptures.

The midtown W’s lobby and restaurant area struts some wild stuff. The ceiling swoops, the walls glow with multi-colored lights, and the furniture suggests a space odyssey.

An art patron admires an Engel work on display near the hotel's front desk.

An art patron admires an Engel work on display near the hotel’s front desk.

Engel’s work on display is her signature animal sculptures, where the surface of the animal is covered in small objects like coins or miniature toys. She has an elephant done up in bullets.

Bronze works by Engel seen in the foreground here, on a hotel patio, with mural by Molly Rose Freeman in the background.

Bronze works by Engel seen in the foreground here, on a W patio, with mural by Molly Rose Freeman in the background.

Engel’s sculptures are beautiful, and usually convey a gentle quality crossed with a great, confounding level of surrealist detail.

Right now, the lobby at the W in midtown is a really good trip.

Mary Engel’s sculptures are on display at the W in midtown through December 21, 2013. Marcia Wood’s Gallery arranged the exhibit.

Lyndon House Arts Center’s “Big” stuff, plus art of Ossabaw Island

We promise not to stray from the capitol very often. That was our promise when we launched the Atlanta Art Blog. But the fact is, the term Atlanta covers a multitude of suburbs.

On June 15, we opened our eyes in Athens (no one calls it a suburb), where the Lyndon House Arts Center hosted an opening reception for an exhibition of work by a handful of artists with southern connections: Duane Paxson, Scott Stephens, Judy Majoe-Girardin and Briana Palmer. This show is apparently entitled “BIG,” which refers to the larger scale of the works.

"Memorial to a Slug," by Duane Paxson

“Memorial to a Slug,” by Duane Paxson

We viewed the work on display in the Center’s Atrium gallery a bit after the lunch hour. The Atrium insisted that its own personality be heeded, dressed in the splashy orange glow of the mid-day sun as it poured through the glass ceiling and electrified the brownish orange wood floor of the gallery.

Perhaps all of that tinted sunlight was appropriate for the artists’ biological references: Briana Palmer’s work referenced cell biology, Paxson insects and slugs, and Majoe-Girardin and Stephens the arboreal realm. Paxson’s large sculptures hung from the ceiling and managed to command both awe and a childlike curiosity.

"Behind the Dunes," by June Ball

“Behind the Dunes,” by June Ball

One can almost escape the Atrium’s orange light in the upstairs gallery, where the Ossabaw Artists’ Collective displayed extensive and perhaps repetitive portrayals of skeletal beach trees, driftwood, herons, and saltmarsh moonrises. Notable works included certain oils by June Ball in which a sky’s freedom is so vividly re-created, and works by Paula Eubanks in multiple media that see Ossabaw as not just an island landscape but a place that holds a human history that is worth the struggle.

“BIG” works are on display at Lyndon House Arts Center through September 27, 2013, as is “Ossabaw Island: Holy Ground.”

Art in Clayton County: Nice Bricks

You would travel a long way for the sake of art, wouldn’t you? To Paris? To Tokyo?

To Jonesboro, Georgia?

The Arts Clayton Gallery in historic Jonesboro held an opening reception on Friday, June 7, for a showing of several artists’ work. The gallery is on Main Street just down from the beautiful old train depot. The gallery’s interior is an architectural beauty, especially the sexy brick walls.

Gallery staffer Courtney Hurst, at far right, hosted a busy night of art lovers.

Gallery staffer Courtney Hurst, at far right, hosted a busy night of art lovers.

Our favorite piece among the paintings, photographs and ceramics on display, was a photograph by Marla Puziss, who had alerted us to this Jonesboro event. Titled “Fisherman’s Wife,” and apparently shot in Spain, the piece shows a young woman sitting at a boat launch with a baby on her knee. An honest, intimate moment.

Arts Clayton Gallery’s website is not currently updated, but it’s nice to know the Gallery recently hosted the quilts of Gee’s Bend. If you call the Gallery, I’m sure they’ll let you know how long the current show will be up.