Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The 2007 Drawing and Sculpture Show

Every year my art club, the Palette and Chisel, shows the sculpture of its members - and as you might expect -- a few views of a few pieces are enjoyable -- and the rest is more like a multi-car pileup on the interstate.

But since sculpture shows don't cover gallery walls --- and there's not that many sculptors anyway --- about ten years ago we began putting drawings up on the walls -- and I'm afraid that's become the show's main attraction.

Well.. who wouldn't be attracted to the Marci Oleszkiewicz drawing shown above? Her volumes are so solid -- her articulation of details is so precise -- and it's such a sweet, dreamy little scene - I can understand why someone bought it as soon as it went up.

But here's a piece I find more compelling -- because it seems poised to enter a dramatic painting -- like this one from the Quattrocento:

You see, our era has lots of nice drawings/paintings of pretty young women stretched out on bed sheets -- it's a wonderful theme -- and I hope we get many more.

But dramatic painting tanked during the last century -- and Stuart Fullerton (who spends his working life immersed in the human drama of criminal litigation) has such a feeling for form, space, and that most delicious of all pictorial qualities: gravitas.

If this man were kidnapped by the Italian Secret Service -- flown by private jet to Florence -- and locked into a chapel of Santa Maria del Carmine until he produced a painting worthy of Masaccio -- I think he could do it ! (isn't there someone else who could be prosecuting the corrupt politicians of Chicago ?)

And what's especially nice about this exhibit -- is that the good drawing here doesn't begin and end with the cunning lines drawn by Phil Renaud -- our retired illustrator and drawing instructor. His work echoes a great,lost world of figurative art -- and if I had his ability -- this is the kind of drawing that I'd be making.

Yet another pretty girl stretching out on a bed (but can there ever be too many?)--this one in a more dramatic setting by Lenin Del Sol---a professional illustrator and occasional cartoonist. This figure would go nicely into a Titian painting -- with Jove, perhaps, erupting as a shower of gold coins from the upper left corner.

Peggy Sanders is a draw-a-holic who comes to my open workshop every Monday night - and here has shown a very strong head -- fit for some Baroque scene -- perhaps this is Marsyas ?

You can see the rest of the drawing and sculpture here,but the only sculptures I liked were the above piece by Leslie Dinelli

..and this wonderful little Roman head by Lois Raub.

Both of these women are about a generation older than myself -- but Leslie is especially interesting to me because she only began to sculpt after retirement from a career of teaching art in the public schools. (obviously her work ethic is much stronger than my own)

On our popular theme of women in bed -- I'd also like to mention this drawing by Rich Bloomfield -- because -- obviously -- it's very different -- lending itself not so much to male fantasy as to the dramatic reality of gravitas in the bedroom -- where it's not just the body that's naked.

Can you imagine the kind of story this might illustrate ? (I don't want to -- it's too close to reality)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great talent here, Chris. It would be fascinating to see all this in the flesh as it were, no pun intended! The first girl on a bed is a well executed drawing by Marci Oleszkiewicz. Apart from having a good model to work from her technique is extremely proficient. Not surprised it sold so quickly! Please don’t tell me is “a before” or “after” Marly it will spoil it for me!! The others on the Palette and Chisel site look good at first glance especially yours Chris, I must look more closely again. I will put some more pictures of Dorset up for you with history as requested.

January 24, 2007  
Anonymous marly said...

How encouraging it must be to have a place like Palette & Chisel... Is the whole show up online? Think I'm missing something--hopped there, but it wasn't 'your' P & C site.

Rampant confusion.

January 24, 2007  
Blogger chris miller said...

here's the link to "my P&C site" -- where almost the entire show is online.

I wish I'd been recording the shows for the past 20 years -- but at least I'll try to cover the next few decades.

January 24, 2007  
Anonymous marly said...

More rampant confusion.

I imagined sizes in my mind but was startled by the shot that shows multiple pieces. I like the space; it must be a fun challenge to hang works.

It would probably be burdensome, but I'd like to know sizes. The picture of the room is helpful that way.

Some time you ought to talk about the materials you like and why... And what about your father? I see what he meant in childhood, at least a bit. Is he still looking over your shoulder, metaphorically speaking? Perhaps you've talked about those things, and I just haven't hit those things in the archives.

Sheer rampant curiosity.

January 25, 2007  
Anonymous Joy In Life said...

Your second-to-last paragraph sits well with me. Thanks for sharing these and reminding me that there is a world outside of boxes and eggs (the pelvis and ribcage, that is...sigh...).

January 25, 2007  
Blogger chris miller said...

Sheer rampant curiosity ?

That's a good thing !

As we know, people change as they get older -- but what they identify with as teenagers often stamps them for life -- and here's the decade of my father's work that stamped me.

(you'll even find a portrait of me at the tender age of 16!)

(since then, we've kind of gone in different directions)

Regarding sculptural materials -- as a person who never knows what he wants -- I prefer materials that offer infinite revision (i.e. modeling clay -- cast into resin/plaster)

January 25, 2007  
Anonymous marly said...

That made sense to me. And what a range of inspirations he had in that era. I'll have to go back and see how you part ways.

So many varied subjects--King Alfred and the spider, Leda, Mother Seton, Christ, John Kennedy. I love the child and mother, her feet tucked back for support. Funny how much the simple triangle pleases.

Young Chris has a look of alert dreaming.

January 26, 2007  

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