Color. Theory. &(b/w) show

Color. Theory. & (b/w)

The creation of a new museum at an art and design college prompts us to explore fundamental elements of a foundational art education experience. Color. Theory. & (b/w) is the first installation of an ongoing curatorial investigation into the art and science of color. The subject of color theory allows us to look at a wide range of ideas, from cognitive science to philosophy to literature, while marveling at the seductive and confounding ways in which artists wrestle with color.

 

 

One of the recurring lessons throughout this iteration involves materials and technique. What is the relationship of color to material? Is color applied, embedded, reflected, atomized, projected, inferred? How do colors appear relative to their neighboring works? Each work provides us with an “object lesson,” an opportunity to consider color in a new light. We invite you to pay close attention to the artists’ use of color relative to the medium, and to make your own connections among and between the works on view.

John & Charlotte Suhler Gallery

Robert Barber

Untitled

1964

Oil on canvas

Courtesy of the artist
and Kerry Schuss Gallery, New York

This colorful composition by Robert Barber (b. 1922, lives and works in Tucson) compliments his suite of black and white studies in the following gallery.

In 1964, Barber created a number of large, colorful abstract works that focus on the materiality of oil paint and its application onto canvas. The contrasting hues, arranged in a loose gestural grid, are thickly applied using large wide brush strokes. Overpainting and a constellation of overlying drips and splattering draw the eye to ancillary color interactions arrayed throughout the surface.

Pino Pascali

Bachi da setola

1968

Acrylic bristle brushes on metal support

Courtesy of Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen

Pino Pascali’s (1935 – 1968) Bachi da setola (bristle worms) emphasize the distance between nature and modern life, where off the shelf hardware store broom bristles resemble oversized caterpillars crawling their way into the exhibition space.

Pino Pascali (1935 – 1968) was an innovative Italian artist of the 1960s who took part in the first Arte Povera (the Italian version of “Pop Art”) shows, changing the materials and themes of his work with every new exhibition. Pascali manipulated items from the everyday, often from domesticated housework, provoking people to think creatively about the materials they encounter daily. 

Peter Alexander

Peter Alexander is a Los Angeles-based artist associated with the Light and Space movement, a distinctly California approach to art, responsive to the light and environment of the West Coast. Alexander’s more recent sculptures are evocative of his earliest works from 1965—1972, where he first experimented with the casting of resin. Now working with urethane, he creates a synthesis of color and material – two elements chemically fused and impossible to separate.

Peter Alexander

Fresh as a Daisy

2019

Urethane in seven parts

Private Collection, courtesy of Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York and Parrasch Heijen Gallery, Los Angeles

Peter Alexander

3/14/16 (Pale Grey Box)

2016

Urethane

Private Collection, courtesy of Parrasch Heijen Gallery, Los Angeles

Peter Alexander

8/8/18 (Kool-Aid Box)

2018

Urethane

Private Collection, courtesy of Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York

Alexander Hay

Yellow Time

2007

Spray acrylic and stencil on linen

Courtesy of the artist and Peter Freeman, Inc., New York
Yellow Time is not a color field or monochromatic painting, and it is less a still life, than an intimate portrait of an object cast aside, drawing our attention to the tender and abject beauty of things discarded.
Alex Hay (b. 1930) is well-known for his monumental paintings, drawings and sculptures of scaled-up everyday objects, such as cash register receipts, toilet paper, and an egg on a plate. Distinct from similar Pop Art objects and sensibilities, Hay’s practice is marked by deep sincerity, rather than the irony and cynicism for which movement is known. In 2002, after a long hiatus, Hay began painting magnified images of found and scrap wood, focusing on an intimate and purely perceptual investigation of color, material and form. He states: “I look closely at the accumulated detritus, selecting out and objectifying the left over ‘thing’, giving it a recognition not attributed to it normally.”

Ken Price

Eek

2008

Acrylic on fired ceramic

Private Collection, Franklin Parrasch Gallery

Eek exemplifies Price’s signature process – a labor-intensive method that involves applying numerous coats of paint and sanding down between coats to reveal the layers, allowing each piece to achieve a unique surface of variegated color and texture.

Ken Price (1935 – 2012) was an US artist who is best known for his ceramic sculptures that resemble biomorphic blobs and sliced geodes. Price’s imaginative and eclectic influences, ranging from Mexican-folk pottery to erotic objects, result in the characteristic plump forms and sloping curves that mark his work.

Jaime Scholnick

Disintegration

2019

Mixed media on upholstery fabric

Courtesy of the artist

In Disintegration, we see the canvas dissipating and reforming into a sculpture, interrupting the weave of the canvas while using the language of fiber, scaled up this time, to weave it back together again.

Jaime Scholnick (b. 1952) is based in Los Angeles and works in a variety of media—from video, to sculpture, to two-dimensional work—in an attempt to map a sense of place and time.

Despite her expertise in color theory, Scholnick works intuitively, finding the vibrant, fluorescent color-blocking happens spontaneously, freeing her work from prescribed dictates of color harmony, allowing the work to emerge dynamically.

Tony Feher

The sculptures and installations produced by American artist Tony Feher (1956-2016) were guided by a creative process refined during the peak years of the HIV/AIDS crisis, which played a pivotal role in shaping both his personal beliefs and his studio practice. 

Following a multi-year period of struggle in the late 1980s and early 1990s, marked by heightened political activism on AIDS-related issues as well as growing uncertainty generated by his own fight to stay alive, Tony Feher decided to strip his artistic method down to a bare-bones sifting of the material world that he encountered on an everyday basis. Acting as equal parts curator, shaman and cultural anthropologist, Feher operated according to the principle that nothing he might produce with his own labor would be nearly as interesting as what exists already in the world. His persistent challenge was finding ways to coax viewers into experiencing this world with the sense of wonder that he possessed naturally, as a result of finding himself still alive.

 

As is clear in the three examples of his work here, color was the primary element that Feher sought as he combed the streets near his home on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and his studio in the South Bronx. In his ongoing quest to discover unexpected visual expression within devalued things, Feher dedicated himself to locating objects — and fragments of objects — whose colors and forms conveyed the clarity and simplicity in their found state that matched the ideal in Feher’s own mind. Sometimes the discovery of one example of a potential form would provide the stimulus to locate more of the same, so that his quest often took him off the street and into hardware stores and supermarkets. But once Feher renounced the use of conventional artist supplies (i.e., paint or canvas) to alter the appearance of his materials, a rich new vocabulary of forms and colors became available for re-deployment as art.

While there is something undeniably austere about the constraints Feher placed on his creative process, the results can be startling in their capacity to evoke sensations far beyond the inherent expressiveness of their component parts. Often it is the mere placement of objects in relation to each other that provides the visual spark which activates the final work. 

 

In Blossom, which consists of multiple units of pink extruded polystyrene sheets, of the kind typically used to protect fragile objects in shipment, Feher’s action was to bend and fold them in the simplest possible configuration to produce vaguely floral shapes. Less monochromatically, the work Singer of Many exists as a horizontal arrangement of glass water bottles, augmented by tinting progressive levels of water, tinted with food coloring, alternating by tint and water level. The untitled 1993 sculpture that constitutes the third work on view is obliquely enigmatic in its configuration of a single glass bottle buried face down in a block of what appears to be homemade cement. The only note of color is a watery green liquid — radiator coolant — nestled in the block’s interior and visible only by peering through the bottle.

 

Overall, the simplicity and transparency of the modifications that Feher performed on his materials stand in direct contrast to the sense of delight and even wonder that the viewer derives from discovering that the experience of art sometimes entails the element of surprise, for instance when the difference between the things we admire for their beauty and the things we discard for their lack of beauty sometimes turns out to be determined by the context in which we encounter them.

Essay by guest curator Dan Cameron, New York

Tony Feher

Blossom

2009

Extruded polystyrene

Courtesy of Sikkema Jenkins Gallery, New York

Tony Feher

(Singer of Many)

2008

31 glass bottles with screw caps, water, food coloring, and painted wood shelf

Collection of Brent Sikkema

The work Singer of Many exists as a horizontal arrangement of glass water bottles, augmented by tinting progressive levels of water, tinted with food coloring, alternating by tint and water level. 

Tony Feher

Untitled

1993

Sand mix, glass bottle, and radiator coolant

Collection of Lucien Terras

The untitled 1993 sculpture that constitutes the third work on view is obliquely enigmatic in its configuration of a single glass bottle buried face down in a block of what appears to be homemade cement. The only note of color is a watery green liquid — radiator coolant — nestled in the block’s interior and visible only by peering through the bottle.

Olivier Mosset

Untitled

1987

Acrylic on canvas

Collection of Victoria Flexner

Olivier Mosset’s circle paintings are born out of discussions of neutrality, repetitions, and anonymity, acting as formal material facts. 

Olivier Mosset (b. 1944) is a founding member of the radical collective BMPT, a group that focused on the self-conscious nature of the avant-garde. Mosset’s paintings, direct and suppressing subjectivity, rejects the colloquial history of painting and instead entertains ideas of creative authorship. Originally painted as black circles on a white canvas, Mosset colorized the circle paintings in the 1980s, when Turner Entertainment began colorizing classic black and white films.

Tom & Sherry Koski Gallery

Tom & Sherry Koski Gallery and South Gallery at Sarasota Art Museum
Tom & Sherry Koski Gallery and the South Gallery at Sarasota Art Museum
Photo: Coke Wisdom O'Neal

Sheila Hicks The Questioning Column

Tom & Sherry Koski Gallery

The color red does not exist in Paris-based artist Sheila Hicks’ (b. 1934) work. In fact, neither do blue, green, or yellow. Yet, oxblood is there, as are teal, lime, and ochre. You may also find dusty rose, lavender, or honey, but never simply pink, purple, or gold. The artist’s skill for identifying the precise shade of orange (tangerine? amber?) that consumes the Seine River at sunset is not just about demonstrating her mastery of chromatic vocabulary. For Hicks, color is more than something your eye perceives. It is something you feel viscerally. It leaves an imprint. And it is evocative. Just like scent and sound—sensorial experiences that have the power to conjure a particular time and place—color, too, can elicit intense emotion.

 

Hicks’ training followed a traditional path, culminating in a Master of Fine Arts from the prestigious Yale University School of Art in the 1950s. Under the tutelage of German color theorist and artist Josef Albers, Hicks developed her aptitude for chromatics, while a friendship with renowned American architect Louis Kahn helped sharpen her eye to architectonic space. Hicks also began to explore textile during her time in New Haven, although she was not yet comfortable calling herself a “fiber artist,” a term that she still resists more than sixty years later. During extensive travels early in her career, Hicks was exposed to global weaving traditions and saw that perhaps her work did not need to be confined by the four sides of a painting stretcher. Her later large-scale projects for architectural sites would become the most resounding manifestations of this notion. With her many commissions over the last five decades, Hicks has consistently been guided by the principle of integration—she conceives installations with the understanding that site informs artwork as much as artwork defines and transforms site.

 

In recent years, Hicks has been collaborating with the textile company Sunbrella™ to produce raw material for her work. Known for their outdoor and marine fabrics, Sunbrella™ employs a process called solution dyeing. Rather than dipping pre-fabricated textiles into dyes, Sunbrella™ mixes pure pigment with liquid acrylic. Once dried and extruded, color and material become one or, as Hicks has suggested, the result is “color made manifest.” While discovering Sunbrella™ was thrilling for the artist, as with any new material, she had to be patient as she allowed its unique voice to emerge. Hicks explains:

 

At the beginning, you work with materials; you don’t know them very well, and try to get them to do what you think you want them to do. As time goes on, you understand the way to make them do what they want to do, but your way.

 

In its earliest state, Sunbrella™ fiber resembles vibrant cotton candy. Hicks’ first engagement with the material involved gathering it into great, cloud-like bales that, when piled high, destabilize the perceived solidity of the built environment. Continued experimentation revealed Sunbrella™’s strength and malleability, characteristics the artist exploits by having a fabricator wind the downy fiber into tight cords. Joined together in larger bundles, the cords retain the seeming lightness of a tapestry—that most-revered weaving tradition—while achieving the weight and stability associated with monumental sculpture. This dual personality resonates with Hicks’ long-held belief that the lines dividing media are disappearing vestiges of the art historical canon. She further resists these boundaries by liberating some of the cords from their bundles, creating loops and squiggles that call upon the language of line drawing.

 

Originally designed to surround a massive column at the front entrance of the Art Gallery of New South Wales during the 2016 Sydney Biennial, The Questioning Column has been installed in multiple venues, each time in direct response to the architectural realities of a given space. For the Tower Gallery, Hicks was moved by the elevation—the room’s most distinguishing feature—as well as the central skylight, which expands the already soaring space. Suspended from a ring twenty-two feet above the gallery floor, The Questioning Column coaxes the viewer to look up and continue looking—beyond the heavy I-beams, through the skylight, and past the museum’s roof plane. For Hicks, the simple act of gazing skyward is essential in our current historical moment. When life on Earth feels increasingly frantic and confounding with each passing day, considering the cosmos may be just what we need to feel grounded.

 

Essay by guest curator, Karin Campbell, Phil Willson Curator of Contemporary Art, Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska

Sheila Hicks

The Questioning Column

2016/2019

Pure pigment acrylic fiber

Courtesy of the artist

Suspended from a ring twenty-two feet above the gallery floor, The Questioning Column coaxes the viewer to look up and continue looking—beyond the heavy I-beams, through the skylight, and past the museum’s roof plane.

South Gallery

Steven Parrino

Frankenstein’s Monster in the Arctic

2001

Oil on canvas

Collection of the Tucson Museum of Art, Gift of Olivier Mosset and Elizabeth Cherry

Frankenstein’s Monster in the Arctic brings to mind a mad scientist’s victim, whose body parts have been cobbled together, pushed, pulled and twisted to create a new still life that is in fact, not natures mortes, but very much alive.

Best known for his monochromatic paintings that are stretched, broken and twisted, Steven Parrino’s (1958 – 2005) practice has been described as “destroying painting in order to save it.” With a nihilistic attitude and a keen awareness of Modernist art discourse, Parrino’s abstract works arouse ideas similar to that of Olivier Mosset’s concept of painting as an object or a real fact. His preference for black, white, and metallic “non-colors” lies in his belief that they exploit the “real,” non-illusionistic properties of light.

Luke Stettner

can't see the forest for the trees

2009

Latex paint on wall

Courtesy of the artist

can’t see the forest for the trees, physically articulates the aphorism of black text juxtaposed against a white wall in a confounding and playful way, inviting the viewer to articulate the mysterious message, while simultaneously experiencing the phenomena of “Gestalt Switch” made famous in the duckrabbit drawing.
Luke Stettner’s (b. 1979) wall installations are composed of black text juxtaposed against a white wall; his piece, can’t see the forest for the trees, physically articulates this aphorism in a confounding and playful way, inviting the viewer to articulate the mysterious message, while simultaneously experiencing the phenomena of “Gestalt Switch” made famous in the duckrabbit drawing. Wittgenstein described this inability to see both the duck and the rabbit at the same time as two different modes of seeing, “seeing that” and “seeing as”. The German philosopher is also well known for his extensive ruminations on color theory, specifically how our language around color influences how we “see” color.

Dominique Labauvie

Kaoling

1974

Kaolin

Courtesy of the artist and Bleu Acier, Inc., Tampa

Labauvie’s relationship with kaolin, a Chinese white clay, began in Serbia when he was invited to work with the material as well as white marble.

Dominique Labauvie’s (b. 1948) works are rooted in material and philosophical explorations of line and shape. His “lines in space” sculptures are “drawings” in metal in three-dimensional space. Labauvie’s relationship with kaolin, a Chinese white clay, began in Serbia when he was invited to work with the material as well as white marble. A transformative experience, he states: “working within this white space was like walking in a landscape covered in snow, everything disappears and becomes pure light.”

Norman Lewis

Ighia Galini

1974

Oil on canvas

Collection of Billy Hodges

Ighia Galini was inspired by a trip Lewis took to Crete. Here, the all-black field is scored with thin lines of white and a striking streak of azure blue, gestures reminiscent of a lightning storm at sea.
Norman Lewis (1909 – 1979) transcended movement boundaries, exploring figuration and abstraction with equal facility. Associated with both Social Realism and later Abstract Expressionism, he deployed the emotional power of both visual strategies in his life-long commitment to expose the abuses of civil rights and civil liberties.Throughout, Lewis’ use of color is compelling. He valued the “color” black, saying it has a way of “arousing other colors.”

North Gallery

Kara Walker

No World

from An Unpeopled Land in Unchartered Waters

2010

Lift ground and spit bite aquatint, and drypoint

Collection of Frank and Katherine Martucci

In No World – an excerpt from the series An Unpeopled Land in Uncharted Waters – Kara Walker uses a dark, dramatic, shadowy setting to convey the darkness of the transatlantic slave trade.

 

An ethereal image of a woman under the sea and a strong pair of hands upholding the ship juxtapose the two silhouettes of victims who made it ashore, bound to their tragic fate ahead.

Kara Walker (b. 1969) is best known for her candid investigations of race, gender, sexuality, and violence using an updated version of 18th and 19th century silhouetted figures. By employing this technique, Walker engages her viewer by confronting them with blackness versus whiteness, and the idea that one cannot exist without the other.

Richard Serra

Broad Cove Marsh I

1996

Etching on Lanaquarelle Watercolor paper

Collection of Lois Stulburg

In Broad Cove Marsh I, Richard Serra references the graphic quality of black in letterforms and type; the print seems to have just been powerfully stamped into the paper, striking up residue in the process and inciting a sense of movement in the work.

Richard Serra (b. 1938) emerged in the 1960s, having his first exhibition at the Leo Castelli Gallery in 1969. Serra’s interest in process began in the form of drawing and printmaking and then later evolved to monumental sculpture. The two-dimensional processes eventually employed silica and Paintstik, materials that allowed Serra to create works that exceed the limitations of traditional printmaking in scale and material. His sculptural works are rooted in the centralizing space and how people respond in relation to it. Serra’s prints address physicality in a different way, using black – a material that absorbs rather than reflects light – to convey weight and explore the balance of heaviness and lightness, and the tension between the two.

Robert Barber

Barber has steadily probed a reductive palette of black and white in everything from lyrical abstract expressionist and op art paintings, austere, hard-edged constructivist reliefs, and draped, coiling sculptural pieces. 

Robert Barber (b. 1922) served in the Navy during World War II as a surgeon’s assistant on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific. After receiving his MFA from the University of Minnesota, he moved to Tucson, Arizona in 1956. Uninterruptedly making art since his teens, he continues to do so on a daily basis at the age of 97.

 

A primary concern of his has been adapting the minimal range of black and white hues from one medium to another, transferring themes and motifs from drawing to painting to sculpture and back again. Though an ardent colorist generally, he has again and again returned to the unadorned duality of the absence of light and its opposite. In his myriad explorations of this tonal pruning he considers elemental qualities of form and shape, and this exiling of the distraction of color instills, in his words, “A discipline that means you can reduce things down to fundamentals. It’s something about the simplicity.”

In this arrangement, the major influences are Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, William Baziotes, and Philip Guston, who Barber studied with at the University of Minnesota. Endlessly inventive, these specific objects run the gamut from the angularity of XXX Relief, the curvy intertwining drooping L’s in L Relief, both emblematic of the artist’s fascination with letters and numbers and their infinite permutations, to the combination of right angles and entwined white cords that become a line against a black background in Rope Abstract Relief. That piece owes a debt to Barber’s exposure in art magazines to Eva Hesse, known for her use of unorthodox materials, and speaks to an unspoken but no less important dialogue with far off and at the time uncanonical contemporaries. Black Cloud Cluster, a collaboration with his late artist wife Fern, who sewed it together, both evokes clouds in cloth and cotton and summons associations with Henri Matisse’s famous Dance. And on the flat plane the rural abstraction of Trees and the ostensible figuration of Cartons certainly contain reminders of all the favorite role models, but with a winning transcendence of their impact in pursuing his own singular concerns and methods. And when it comes to the use of just black and white there is a delight in the lack of limits, because, as Barber states, “The power, all of it comes from limitation, from stripping down, it’s inexhaustible.”

Robert Barber

XXX Relief

c. 1980s

Acrylic on Masonite

Courtesy of the artist

Endlessly inventive, these specific objects run the gamut from the angularity of XXX Relief, the curvy intertwining drooping L’s in L Relief, both emblematic of the artist’s fascination with letters and numbers and their infinite permutations, to the combination of right angles and entwined white cords that become a line against a black background in Rope Abstract Relief.

Robert Barber

Cartons

c. 1960s

Acrylic on canvas

Courtesy of the artist

On the flat plane, the rural abstraction of Trees and the ostensible figuration of Cartons certainly contain reminders of all the favorite role models, but with a winning transcendence of their impact in pursuing Barber’s own singular concerns and methods.

Robert Barber

Carton Abstract

c. 1990s

Acrylic on canvas

Courtesy of the artist

Cartons contain reminders of all the favorite role models, but with a winning transcendence of their impact in pursuing Barber’s own singular concerns and methods.

Robert Barber

L Relief

c. 1980s

Acrylic on canvas

Courtesy of the artist

The curvy intertwining drooping L’s in L Relief,  are both emblematic of the artist’s fascination with letters and numbers and their infinite permutations.

Robert Barber

Trees

1959-1960

Oil on canvas

Courtesy of the artist

On the flat plane, the rural abstraction of Trees and the ostensible figuration of Cartons certainly contain reminders of all the favorite role models, but with a winning transcendence of their impact in pursuing Barber’s own singular concerns and methods.

Robert Barber

Black Cloud Cluster

c. 1970s

Cloth

Courtesy of the artist

Black Cloud Cluster, a collaboration with Barber’s late artist wife Fern, who sewed it together, both evokes clouds in cloth and cotton and summons associations with Henri Matisse’s famous Dance.

Robert Barber

Rope Abstract Relief

c. 1970s

Acrylic, cardboard and rope

Courtesy of the artist

Endlessly inventive, Barber’s combination of right angles and entwined white cords become a line against a black background in Rope Abstract Relief.

Dave Lewis

Target

2019

Latex paint on wall

Courtesy of the artist

Lewis is interested in the target as both a graphic icon, and as a functional object rendered inert until activated.

Dave Lewis (b. 1971) Lewis works in a variety of media, having forged an early sculptural practice out of his highly refined welding skills. Drawing, performance, sculpture and painting are employed throughout his practice in a “right tool for the job” method of operation. The target is a recurring theme in his work. Here, we see a version painted directly on the wall. In his words:

A target proves to be a slippery thing. The cheap paper version I remember was sometimes a geometric test of concentration, and sometimes it was a blank canvas in the worst possible way. Then in an instant it became a tangible record of, let’s be honest, failure. Does it only achieve its function if you shoot it? Is it no good to just look at, or do you have to put a hole in it? What other thing in the world only comes fully into being when struck by a bullet? Graphically, optical, the target is a slippery thing. The two series of concentric rings do not seem to hold to one plane. One pushes in front of the other, or they blend into vibrating gray. Target seems most stable when only glanced at.

Richard Serra

Extension #1

2004

Etching on paper

Collection of Lois Stulberg

Serra’s prints address physicality using black – a material that absorbs rather than reflects light – to convey weight and explore the balance of heaviness and lightness, and the tension between the two.

Richard Serra (b. 1938) emerged in the 1960s, having his first exhibition at the Leo Castelli Gallery in 1969. Serra’s interest in process began in the form of drawing and printmaking and then later evolved to monumental sculpture. The two-dimensional processes eventually employed silica and Paintstik, materials that allowed Serra to create works that exceed the limitations of traditional printmaking in scale and material. His sculptural works are rooted in the centralizing space and how people respond in relation to it.  In Broad Cove Marsh I , Serra references the graphic quality of black in letterforms and type; the print seems to have just been powerfully stamped into the paper, striking up residue in the process and inciting a sense of movement in the work.

Aili Schmeltz

With a strong use of perspective and the creation of three-dimensionality in Aili Schmeltz’s work, the Object/Window/Neither series manipulates space and contorts reality.

Aili Schmeltz (b. 1975) is a Los Angeles-based artist whose works integrate the utopian ideologies of modernism and obsession with architectural form. Schmeltz’s practice ranges from painting to drawing to sculpture and installation. Here, we see three examples of her Object/Window/Neither series, which investigates space through the creation of meticulous and meditative graphite drawings. The viewer is invited to see the graphite drawing as one of the elements the title suggests, or none at all.

Aili Schmeltz

Object/Window/Both/Neither XXXVI

2018

Graphite on paper

Courtesy of the artist and Edward Cella Art & Architecture, Los Angeles

Aili Schmeltz

Object/Window/Both/Neither XXXV

2018

Graphite on paper

Courtesy of the artist and Edward Cella Art & Architecture, Los Angeles

Aili Schmeltz

Object/Window/Both/Neither XVII

2017

Graphite on paper

Courtesy of the artist and Edward Cella Art & Architecture, Los Angeles

The Jonathan McCague Arcade

Christian Sampson, Vita In Motu (2019) Photo: Coke Wisdom O'Neal
Christian Sampson, Vita In Motu, (2019)
Photo: Coke Wisdom O'Neal

Christian Sampson

Vita in Motu

2019

Solar Projection, Color Motion Picture, a durational site-specific installation with dichroic film, acrylic and glass

Courtesy of the artist

The site-specific installation Vita in Motu conscripts the architecture of the building, and the solar system, as collaborators to create an ever-changing dazzling color and light show, reminding us of our place in the universe and that color is light, constantly in flux, and subject to one’s perspective.

Christian Sampson (b. 1974) works with both tangible and intangible materials – Plexiglas, polymers, wood, dyes, light, reflection and shadow – to experiment with space and perception. His works are often site-specific, uniquely responding to architectural space. The ephemeral and ever-changing nature of these colored light projections aligns closely with early cinematic animation and filmmaking experiments.

Murray Bring & Kay Delaney Conservatory

Jaime Scholnick

Cultivation

2019

Mixed media on upholstery fabric

Courtesy of the artist

Despite her expertise in color theory, Scholnick works intuitively, finding the vibrant, fluorescent color-blocking happens spontaneously, freeing her work from prescribed dictates of color harmony, allowing the work to emerge dynamically. 

Jaime Scholnick (b. 1952) is based in Los Angeles and works in a variety of media—from video, to sculpture, to two-dimensional work—in an attempt to map a sense of place and time. In Disintegration, we see the canvas dissipating and reforming into a sculpture, interrupting the weave of the canvas while using the language of fiber, scaled up this time, to weave it back together again.

Samo Davis

RKPGPW CMYK

2019

Membership ribbons

Courtesy of the artist

Davis’ vibrant work in the conservatory, RKPGPW CMYK, repurposes the Museum Membership ribbons that are produced during the printing process of Membership cards.
Samo Davis (b. 1985) works primarily with plastic, paint, and fabric, utilizing their malleability to create unique, organic-inspired forms. Her vibrant work in the conservatory, RKPGPW CMYK, repurposes the Museum Membership ribbons that are produced during the printing process of Membership cards. The sculptures thus become a portrait of the new Museum’s community, and a celebration of Sarasota’s longstanding dedication to the arts. The “pom pom” form is a playful reminder of the history of the Sarasota High School, with the community serving as the new “cheerleaders”. The title refers to both the classic subtractive printing technique (standing for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black) as well as a tribute to the Membership team, through the addition her their initials. 

Jan Schmidt Loggia

Odili Donald Odita

Force Field

2019 – 2020

Latex paint on masonry

Courtesy of the artist

Odili Donald Odita (b. 1966) is well known for his site-specific kaleidoscopic patterns of hard-edge, colorful shapes. Force Field bathes the Museum’s loggia with colorful angular forms arranged in a rhythmic composition, with slivers of white acting as visual ellipses, much like phrasing in a jazz riff.
On his use of color, Odita notes:

The colors I use are personal; they reflect the collection of visions of my travels locally and globally… I try to derive the colors intuitively, hand-mixing and coordinating them along the way. In my process, I cannot make a color twice – it can only appear to be the same. This aspect is important to me as it highlights the specificity of differences that exist in the work of people and things.

Morganroth Reception and Wendy G. Surkis & Peppi Elona Lobby

Leah Rosenberg

28 Colors (Sarasota, FL)

2019

Latex and acrylic paint
Dimensions variable, Museum lobby and stairwell

Courtesy of the artist

For Leah Rosenberg (b. 1979), color and process play a primary role in her body of work spanning painting, sculpture, printmaking, food and performance.

In 28 Colors (Sarasota, FL), Leah Rosenberg surveyed our hometown on foot and chose twenty-eight colors to represent specific aspects of Sarasota. On view you will see Purple Hyacinth of the Van Wezel, Sea Star of manatees at MOTE, Vermillion of circus stripes, Tangy Orange of the Sarasota High School team colors, and Oregano of palm tree leaves, among twenty-three other colorful interpretations. The shape of the installation responds to the architecture of the building, transforming from solid stripes in the lobby that then begin to sway and segment into playful confetti in the stairwell, and ultimately fall back into a structured pattern that mimics the original brick masonry.

Great Lawn

Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena

Los Trompos

2015

Colorful woven fabric and metal structure

Los Trompos (“The Spinning Tops”), a large-scale, interactive installation designed by award-winning contemporary Mexican designers Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena. Inspired by the colorful design of a children’s toy top, the vibrant colors on each are made from fabric that is woven in a traditional style by Mexican artisans. Functioning as both artwork and rotating seating spaces, each sculpture acts as a gathering place for relaxation, social interaction and a meaningful art experience.

Héctor Esrawe is the founder of the cross-disciplinary design firm Esrawe Studio. He is inspired by traditional Latin American design, architecture and folk art, and his works are playful and organic.

Ignacio Cadena is owner and creative director of Cadena + Asoc. Concept Design. His designs explore the boundaries of art and science, often combining various media in a multi-disciplinary approach.

In 2008, the two artists partnered to create the firm Esrawe + Cadena, and continue to collaborate on projects today.

Marcy & Michael Klein Plaza

Olivier Mosset

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Olivier Mosset (b. 1944) is a founding member of the radical collective BMPT, a group that focused on the self-conscious nature of the avant-garde. Mosset’s paintings, direct and suppressing subjectivity, rejects the colloquial history of painting and instead entertains ideas of creative authorship. Originally painted as black circles on a white canvas, Mosset colorized the circle paintings in the 1980s, when Turner Entertainment began colorizing classic black and white films.

Olivier Mosset

Untitled

2019

Acrylic on masonry

Courtesy of the artist

Olivier Mosset

Untitled

2019

Acrylic on masonry

Courtesy of the artist

Jean Shin

Jean Shin (b. 1971) is nationally recognized for her monumental installations that transform everyday objects into elegant expressions of identity and community.

Shin views the celadon fragments as a metaphor of the Korean diaspora, vibrant artifacts of the Korean people, their history and culture that are scattered all over the world to form new identities elsewhere. The term celadon also refers to the soft, pale grey-green color achieved by coating the clay with an iron-rich glaze that oxidizes during the heating process.

Jean Shin

Celadon Landscape

2015

Ceramic shards, mortar and ESP foam

Courtesy of the artist

Referencing the shape of traditional Korean “male” and “female” celadon vases, Celadon Landscape is constructed from ceramic discards collected from numerous kilns in Korea. These shards are the result of potters destroying finished ceramic vessels with any minor imperfections.

Jean Shin

Celadon Displays

2015

Ceramic shards, Plexiglas vitrines, and wooden pedestals

Courtesy of the artist

Jean Shin

Celadon Threads

2008

Digital embroidery, stitching, and inkjet print on paper

Courtesy of the artist; Published by SOLO Impression, New York