Monday, August 30, 2010

Frances A. Cox: The Human Side of Botanics

Gallery 180 of The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago will present the work of Frances A. Cox from September 14 - November 11 with a reception scheduled for Friday, September 17th from 5:30-7:30.

I spent some time with Cox in her studio a few weeks ago—selecting the pieces to be exhibited for this show. The pieces are a collection of oil paintings which introduce the viewer to an abstract-surreal reality where inconspicuous portraiture is composed of plant and still life forms. Cox utilizes these forms to create her own secretly significant visual language. This personal language—comprised of a variety of recognizable components and a vivid color palette—becomes the focus of each canvas as the subtle reference to the human form recedes.

Cox explains, “When I look at plant forms, I view them as botanical singularities having the characteristics of other living things. I transfer to plants, metaphors for human feelings and appearances.”

The work of Frances A. Cox will be presented at Gallery 180 of The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago through November 11th. An Opening Reception will take place on Friday, September 17, 5:30-7:30 pm. This exhibition is free and open to the public. All works are available for purchase. Gallery 180 is located at 180 N. Wabash—at the corner of Lake and Wabash—in Chicago’s Loop.

The gallery is open Monday through Thursday from 8am-8pm; Friday, 8am-5:30pm and Saturday 9am-5pm.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Rebecca Moy: Coming this Fall

I believe that I became acquainted with the work of Rebecca Moy during the preparation of the 2009 Art Against AIDS event. Intrigued by the work during the jury process, I selected Moy’s painting to be included in the Preview Exhibition, which was presented at Gallery 180 of The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago. While the show was installed, I explored the piece and considered it for my personal collection. Like many collectors, I knew I wanted the piece but I was trying to decide where to place the work within our home. I put off the purchase.

The piece didn’t sell during the Preview Exhibition and it was scheduled to be on live auction at the main event. Both my partner and I decided that the Moy painting would be a refreshing addition to our growing collection. We agreed on the price we would pay and continued on with the evening. Friends and collogues filled the room. Distractions were everywhere and before we realized, the auction of the Moy painting had concluded. We had missed our opportunity.

After the auction, I approached the impeccably dressed Artist to express my interest in her work. I wanted to see more. I did. The work was consistent, intriguing and professional. I scheduled a solo exhibition for the 2010 exhibition season and asked that she stay in contact with me as the show began to solidify.

Well... I met with Rebecca—this past week—in her studio. I was invited into the abundant sanctuary were massive canvases surround a central workspace. Here was where—I imagine—the painter would obsessively apply layer after layer of acrylic, inventing—and reinventing—new meditative imagery. Some of the compositions were presented in quiet palettes while others seem charged with electric vibrancy... each conveying an individual mood or personality. They're amazing.

Above is a detail of one of the paintings in progress. The Rebecca Moy exhibition will be presented at Gallery 180 of The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago in November. It’s a show that shouldn’t be missed. I’ll keep you posted.