Cathy Breslaw's Installation

Cathy Breslaw's Installation
Cathy Breslaw's Installation:Dreamscape

Thursday, September 15, 2016

With Abandon, An SDSU Alumni Exhibition of Recent Grads, SDSU Downtown Gallery, San Diego

With Abandon
Group exhibition of former students, SDSU
Guest curated by Ginger Shulick Porcella, Executive Director, San Diego Art Institute
Through November 6th

Article by Cathy Breslaw

With Abandon is a group exhibition of fourteen former students of San Diego State University who graduated within the past five years, and one student working toward an MFA. The artworks include a fabrication of materials, metal and wood craft and the repurposing of found objects in the form of installation, sculpture, ceramics, video, painting, book-making and photographic prints. Though each artist offers varying perspectives in the nature and purpose of their work, there does appear to be a commonality of an almost obsessive attention to craft and detail.  Ainsly Buhl’s installation created with coffee straws, wood and wire, and Aren Skalman’s mixed media and found objects installation seem to bounce off of one another – the former lending an exacting display of layers of carefully constructed very long strands of two toned red straws emanating from the wall equally from a wood and wire central base, while Skalman’s work appears to be a randomly placed mixture of various short and long colorful shapes hanging from the wall suggesting some kind of communication system we are not familiar with. Chelsea Herman’s Artist book (Chiné-colle etchings, text handset Bembo and printed letterpress on Stonehenge paper) and Tammy Young Eun Kim’s 3-D printed sandstone, alumide, brass, steel and silver small sculptural forms share a quiet and poetic sensibility with a delicate and subtle sense of beauty and focus on craft. Lee M. Lavy’s installation of found posts are arranged within the gallery’s central space, each fulfilling a different size and character, mostly all weathered by time from their former ‘home’, telling a story seemingly marked by territory, allowing viewers to roam within and around each post, giving us access to a ‘close up’ view. Adam John Manley’s two 12 foot wood and acrylic installation works share Lavy’s marking of territory with his works’ pointing of ‘to’ and ‘from’ arrows giving directions to viewers within the landscape of the gallery space. The works of Maricarmen Olimón and Amanda Packer share a vulnerability in their more personal and intimate art pieces created from clay(Oliman) and copper, silver and brass with thread and paint jewelry(Packer). Kaiya Rainbolt’s minimalist sculpture(65” x 38” x36”) sitting only inches above the floor, uses twin mattresses twisted in a symmetrical ‘knot’ – This work seems to sit between a humorous and sober theme. Artist Phil Rowland uses the objects of hammer and axe heads, using ash, maple, oak and walnut woods to create his highly well-crafted conceptual works. Rowland’s pieces reflect a surprising sense of humor.
Michael Rybicki’s 8 foot concrete and wood installation leans on a central column adjacent to Lavy’s posts and while they relate to one another, Rybicki’s ‘sculpture’ seems to have the hand of the artist in it’s making. Marisa Scheinfeld’s chromogenic prints are both formally and compositionally very beautiful.  In contrast, the subject matter is of abandoned buildings reminiscent of old-school soda fountain seating in a restaurant that saw better days. There is a certain feeling of nostalgia and good memories in these richly hued prints. Kurosh Yahyai’s oil on canvas and adjacent installation of wood, steel and mixed media is a heavy themed work portraying a  'looming' female figure, in a dark environment with light shone on her face. Ashley Fenderson’s installation created in the loading dock area of the gallery is a huge roundish art piece dense with organic and man-made materials filled with the stuff we see along highways blowing in the wind. It is mysterious, and both visually appealing and raw in its presence. There are no hidden agendas in the works of this exhibition – with a range of materials, techniques and artist’s intent, the works serve viewers a fascinating look at nicely crafted, distinctive and personal works by artists trained at San Diego State University.
Adam John Manley    Itinerant Landmarks

Chelsea Herman    Artist book
(Chiné-colle etchings, text handset Bembo and printed letterpress on Stonehenge paper)

Artist Lee M. Lavey  with his installation   Outposts

Amanda Packer Recollect: A Collection of Pendants, 2013

Kaiya Rainbolt     Aposiopesis #3 Confusion,      2016

Artist, Ashley Fenderson working on her installation     Ghost

San Diego Mesa College Faculty Exhibition

Faculty Exhibition
San Diego Mesa College, San Diego
Through September 28th

Article by Cathy Breslaw

The faculty exhibition at San Diego Mesa College has a wide range of works including ceramics, oil and acrylic painting, installation, collage, mixed media, video, photography, photomontage, and pastel paintings. Some artists include self portraits, paintings exploring many ways the human form can be transformed, while others have differing intentions examining identity,  interests in archaeology, statements on the status of college costs, works that stem from the ordinary and the meaning of the mundane, observation and wonder over simple things, the communicative power of objects while still others examine the many ways materials can be utilized.  John Chwekun experiments with using white on white surfaces and creates a tiny scene of a playground with wire and post-it notes,  Georgia K. Laris transforms the support of paintings out of the ‘rectangle’, using acrylics on papers with cotton threads, Kraig Cavanaugh  calls his works paintings but uses acrylic and wire to create 3-D sculpture-like forms that hang off the walls, and Nathan Betschart creates porcelain raku.  Wendell Kling exhibits an interactive ‘camp fire’ installation along with a stop motion animation. Juan Carlos Toth exhibits a large scale red painting and offers others to add their own marks to his canvas using colored oil sticks  he provides for visitors to use – encouraging free expression.  If students ever wondered about all the ways art can be made, they won’t after seeing this exhibition – the possibilities are endlessly expressed with this show that are worth a visit.
Allesandra Moctezuma   Crushed Dreams    clay, mixed media
Barbara Sexton     Common Denominator #2     photomontage

John Chwekun    Still Life    mixed media

Christopher Ferreria    Hawk    pigment print

Georgia K. Laris    Unspoken   acrylics on papers with cotton threads

Cindy Zimmerman   Daily Self-Portrait  ink on paper

Friday, September 9, 2016

Moris's Installation Hermoso Paisaje at Museum of Contemporary Art, Downtown San Diego

(Israel Meza Moreno) known as Moris:  Hermoso Paisaje series

MCASD, on view thru November 27th

Article by Cathy Breslaw

Mexico City artist Israel Meza Moreno – otherwise known as Moris, created Hermoso Paisaje, an installation in the center lobby of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Downtown San Diego.  An unfamiliar artistic
eye may initially react to Moris’s art with the question: what are all these used taped and flattened cardboard boxes, sand, old stacked newspapers, rocks, and drawings on thinly painted hanging tarps doing in the center of a museum space? Moris presents us with a replica of common encampments found throughout Mexico City, highlighting the urban poverty of many of its residents.  Of course, the items in the installation are used by these residents to provide shelter and safety, creating make-shift boundaries to protect themselves from possible crime and inclement weather. Moris’s selected materials are not in any way different than the ‘real’ world, but actual items typically used by the poor. The use of the Mexican flag provides the country’s location for Moris‘s ‘urban home’, but could easily be a stand-in for many urban areas of U.S. cities, where homeless people abound.  By the change of context, moving these enclosures to the stark and meticulously managed rooms of a museum or gallery, the issues of poverty and homelessness can be scrutinized, studied and focused upon. What is missing, however, are the actual people who inhabit these spaces on a daily basis. This disparity emphasizes the differences between the street world and the art world – one is merely a diorama of reality while the other describing a truly devastating life. Perhaps Moris’s constructions can someday accomplish more than a demonstration of the ills of street life and can become a catalyst for social change.

Homage/Sublime - Exhibition of Artists Jeff Irwin and Rex Yuasa at R.B. Stevenson Gallery, La Jolla, CA

Jeff Irwin and Rex Yuasa
R.B. Stevenson Gallery, La Jolla, CA

Article by Cathy Breslaw

Jeff Irwin’s sculptures are in stark contrast to Rex Yuasa’s paintings, yet viewing their works together provide some intriguing contrasts. Irwin’s clay material feels humble and natural while Yuasa’s paintings use more man-made materials – acrylic, oils and alkyd on canvas. The surfaces of Irwin’s sculptures are roughly hewn, his simulated nubby wood surfaces emphasize some textured sawed off “imperfect” areas while Yuasa’s surfaces are slick and shiny with resin. Irwin’s color palette is white and off-white while Yuasa’s color palette is all-over-the-place. The palette used in his paintings represent seemingly all ‘colors of the rainbow’ in richly bright and bold, sometimes neon and intense colors that almost make you want to look away. Irwin’s sculptures have a humble, quiet, meditative and focused quality while Yuasa’s paintings are barely hanging on to a sense of order and composition with their repetitive use of the ‘circle’ symbol.  The subject matter of Irwin’s sculptures are based in the animal world and nature, commenting on the connections between the two. His 96” x 108” circular installation of many small extinct animals made of earthenware and glaze, form Irwin’s featured work in his portion of the exhibition.  Yuasa’s works range in size from 18.4” x 12” up to 48” x 48”, not especially large, but surprisingly have the feeling of inhabiting way more physical space in the gallery due to their visual explosions of color and loosely organized arrangements of objects.  Yuasa’s abstract paintings appear to be investigating space. Using similar-sized multiples of three-dimensional circles in a repetitive manner, Yuasa provide viewers with visual stimulation and a variety of sensations. The work of Jeff Irwin and Rex Yuasa are a strong counterpoint to one another, providing viewers with a lot to talk about.

Jeff Irwin    40 Extinct Trophies  earthenware, glaze sculptures  96" x 108" x 8"

Rex Yuasa, SMR. Renn. 8, acrylic, oil, alkyd on canvas over wood panel, 23 1/2" round

Cathy Breslaw's New Exhibition, Vibrations - Viterbo University, La Crosse, Wisconsin

Letting people know about my upcoming new exhibition - 'Vibrations'...Here are the details...

Vibrations Opens at Viterbo University
Art Gallery

Exhibition Runs September 14th through October 28th

Cathy Breslaw invites you to attend the Closing Reception
on Wednesday, October 19th 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Artist lecture Thursday, October 20th at 9:30 am
followed by a Creativity Workshop - "Tapping The Well" for students, faculty
and the general public from10:15 am - 12:00 noon.

Works in this exhibition are multi-layered richly hued textural transparent industrial mesh wall works, mixed media drawing works on plastic and a circular floor art piece. Also showing is a video inspired by the power of the ocean - abstract imagery reminiscent of color field painting.