Monday, January 21, 2013

Terry Frost

Terry Frost, Yellow February, 1957, oil on board, 47.95 x 59.93 in.

Terry Frost began painting in 1943 whilst he was a prisoner of war in Germany. 

He moved to St Ives in 1946 and studied under Leonard Fuller. Subsequently, he attended Camberwell School of Art and the St. Ives School of Art. In 1951 he worked as an assistant to the sculptor Barbara Hepworth.

His first one-man exhibition in London was at the Leicester Galleries in 1952 and in New York at the Bertha Schaefer Gallery in 1960. Frost taught at both the Bath Academy of Art and at Leeds College of Art. He was a member of the London Group in 1958. 

-Courtesy of the James Hyman gallery's website.

Terry Frost, photographer unkown. Courtesy of Beaux Arts London

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

After Lorca By Ted Hughes

Arshile Gorky, Dark Green Painting, ca.1948, oil on canvas, 43 3/4 x 55 1/2 in.
© 2009 Estate of Arshile Gorky/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

by Ted Hughes

The clock says "When will it be morning?" 
The sun says "Noon hurt me." 

The river cries with its mouthful of mud 
And the sea moves every way without moving.

Out of my ear grew a reed 
Never touched by mouth. 
Paper yellows, even without flame, 
But in words carbon has already become diamond.

A supple river of mirrors I run on 
Where great shadows rise to the glance, 
Flowing all forward and bringing 
The world through my reflection.

A voice like a ghost that is not 
Rustle that dead in passage 
Leaving the living chilled, 
Wipe clear the pure glass of stone.

Wipe clear the pure stone of flesh.

A song tickling God's ear
Till he laughs and catches it with his hand
A song with a man's face
That God holds up in his fingers.

Monday, January 14, 2013

On The Edge @ Cheryl Hazan Contemporary Art

(click image to enlarge)

Douglas Witmer @ Blank Space

511 W 25th Street
Suite 204
New York, NY 10001

Group Show of Gallery Artists @ Margaret Thatcher Projects

Kevin Finklea, Go Steal Ahead #9, 2010, acrylic on plywood, 8.25 x 13 x 12.5 in.
(Image courtesy of Margaret Thatcher Projects)

A Group Show of Gallery Artists
Opening: January 17, 6 - 8 PM
January 17 - February 9, 2013
Margaret Thatcher Projects
539 West 23rd St
New York, NY 10011

Modern British Painting And Sculpture @ Hillsboro Fine Art

Sandra Blow, Eclipse, acrylic on canvas, 122 x 122 cm.
(Image courtesy of Hillsboro Fine Art)

Modern British Painting and Sculpture
With work by Gillian Ayres, Terry Frost, Anthony Caro, John Hoyland, Sandra Blow and others.
Opening: January 17th, 6 - 8 PM
January 17 - February 16, 2013
49 Parnell Square West 
Dublin 1, Ireland
Gallery Hours of Business
Monday - Friday: 10.30am-6.00pm
Saturday: 10.30am-4.00pm

Friday, January 11, 2013

James Erikson @ LG Tripp Gallery

James Erikson exhibits vibrant, subtle paintings in his first one person show at LG Tripp Gallery.

James Erikson: Quartet
Opening reception: Saturday January 26, 5 - 7 PM
January 25 - February 23, 2013
47 - 49 N. Second Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Interview on Ahtcast

Paul Behnke, 2013, Di Prima's Trophy, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 38 in.

I'm very happy to have my work featured in a podcast interview on
AhtCast is a platform for artist interviews conducted by painter Phillip J Mellen.

You can listen to my interview here.
(audio podcast is at the bottom of post)

Other artists interviewed include:

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Brett Baker @ Elizabeth Harris Gallery

Fernande II, 2004-07, oil on canvas, 20 x 18"

Igitur IV, 2012, oil on canvas, 5 x 4"

Quadraturin, 2009-12, oil on canvas, 16 x 14"

Sutulin's Light, 2007-12, oil on canvas, 18 x 17"

Brett Baker

Painter's Table III, 2009-11, oil on canvas, 12 x 12"

Igitur II, 2009-12, oil on canvas, 8 x 6"

Artist/curator Julie Torres and Brett Baker at Baker's opening @ Elizabeth Harris, NYC.

January 4 - February 2, 2013
529 W 20th Street
New York, NY 10011

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Dale McNeil @ Curating Contemporary

Serene in Strength, 2012, oil on canvas, 20 x 16 in.

Please check out the online exhibition I curated of Dale McNeil's new work on Curating Contemporary, a website run by Brian Edmonds and dedicated to hosting artist-curated exhibitions on a rotating monthly basis. 

View the exhibition here.

Below is my essay on McNeil's work:

Resplendent Rubble
Paul Behnke

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image or any likeness of anything that is in Heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
KJV, Exodus, 20.4

Abstraction, at its core, stems from an unease with the physical world and the way it is portrayed. An extreme asceticism lies at its heart. It is dissatisfied with the false idols of representation.

Certain abstract painters are more conscious of this origin.  They may endeavor to shed trappings and to strip from their art all that is unnecessary- all that is not pure.

*   *   *

Today, a painter who draws a line between nature and image, who views art- making as a vocation and who wishes for an ideal, even when one is not possible, seems hopelessly out of step with current trends. But there are painters still at work who value the attitudes of Rouault, Pinkham Ryder, DeFeo, and Redon.

Dale McNeil is such a painter. While his current body of work makes use of symbol and structure, it continually chafes at and denies these artifices of representation as false and unclear, untrue and muddled.

*   *   *

McNeil begins a painting with a seminal symbol, so long in use that it has become embedded in the universal unconsciousness.  These familiar symbols are explored like ruins, through the layering of paint and scraping it away.  With the use of transparent veils, and clots of paint and medium, these symbols are picked apart, demolished and built again into a new order. McNeil pushes beyond the original symbol in his search for meaning.

The resulting paintings transcend any fumbled mining for a modernist grail. Creation is a denial of life’s imperfection. McNeil’s crusting of marks and pigment, obfuscated form, and murky veils deny the inadequate meaning of the original symbol. Left is a record of a grand search that mixes human frailty and denial of the ideal, even as an ideal is sought.  Resplendent rubble is left.

In the end, the greatest strength of McNeil’s paintings is this fleeting glimpse of the sacred.

Dale McNeil
Order Manifest
curated by Paul Behnke
January 7 - February 7, 2013
Curating Contemporary

Friday, January 4, 2013

Studio Visit With Dale McNeil

Last October I was able to visit, painter, Dale McNeil's studio in Memphis, TN. This photo blog presents studio views and unfinished work that  McNeil was preparing for his upcoming online exhibition @ Brian Edmond's Curating Contemporary website.

A line from the artist's statement:

I use my paintings as a record of ideas easily forgotten and often misunderstood. I keep my tools for recording simple and often they are imperfect. Paint is not a perfect record, paint is not perfect, paint is evidence of life.

A quote jotted in the artist's sketchbook:

"…the simple imitation impulse to enter into disputation with nature as, on the other hand, the utilization of natural forces (which is, after all, also a disputation with nature) has to do with the higher psychic impulse to create gods for oneself."
(Worringer "Abstraction and Empathy" p12)

Dale McNeil in his studio, Memphis, TN., October 2012

For more information on Dale McNeil and his work visit his website here.

Also view McNeil's online exhibition on Curating Contemporary from January 7 - Feburary 7, 2013