Wendy Artin, NYC Marilyn Innocent, 26" x 41", watercolor on Arches, 2017
WENDY ARTIN - HERE TODAY
Athens, Rome, Paris, London, New York
Watercolor Wallscapes and other Recent Work
Gurari Collections, 460 Harrison Avenue, Boston, November 3 - December 10, 2017
to download a pdf of the Press Release, click here
to look at the Press Release without downloading, click here
Wendy Artin, Big Pile of Big Watercolors of Urban Wallscapes, 2017
Beautifully stained stencils, torn posters, printouts, spray-painted marks, drips, cracks, rust, hinges, beloved faces peering out of flat walls: these are city walls that I love to look at and take detours to see again. Unlike the bas-reliefs from antiquity that I have painted in the past, they will disappear in a matter of months. Like a wild garden, they have no one designer, no master architect. I have taken some liberties moving things around and swapping out certain images, but this is basically how the real walls were as I stood in front of them.
Wendy Artin - Paris On Danse, 9"x12" - Athens Motorcycle, 9"x12" - Rome Cinema America, 7"x10" - 2017
I try to make the paint elegant and clumsy - full of information, but not trompe-l'oeil - in and out of focus, crisp here and watery there. As diverse as faces in a city crowd, there are line drawings, paintings, stencils, photographs - all different ways of portraying people, in all different sizes, like a fairytale. Artistically this gives me freedom to play, to paint in a variety of different ways. I can change the color, the focus; I can allow the watercolor to shine with its full versatility. I can stay right on the edge of illusion, with the image moving back and forth between 2D and 3D: hand-made paintings of usually machine-generated postings. The layering and different focal points are like improvisational jazz where the sweet themes that you recognize shift and change as you become carried away by the next bit till suddenly there is a new tune, a new picture, a new face.
Many of the walls have images of famous people who died too young: Amy Winehouse, John Lennon, David Bowie, Marilyn Monroe, Andy Warhol, Audrey Hepburn, Muhammed Ali. They are posted or painted in order to remember, to have the people live on, but they are so temporary - pasted paper, stencils! There is something quite touching about the fragility of these pieces of paper that are trying to prolong the too short lives of these idols. Fleeting lives, fleeting images - glimpses of Bruno Boschin, my husband who died in 2014, too, are on some of the walls.
Wendy Artin, NYC Muhammed Ali, John and Yoko, 26"x41", watercolor on Arches, 2017
Paradoxically, it was a trip to Athens to see the Parthenon frieze at the new Acropolis Museum that began this new series, as I found myself doubling back to admire a fragment of a wall with Greek graffiti and a tiny Madonna stencil. The urge to put faces on facades reaches back in time and across cultures - is their purpose similar?
Wendy Artin, London Blue Amy, 9"x12", watercolor on Arches, 2017
What do the walls say, about the inhabitants, the travelers, the individuals, their dreams? From the polite Roman walls with respectful space around each posting, to the scantily clad seductive stencils on Paris walls, to the chaotic and empassioned artistic layerings of New York?
These paintings are time capsules and travel pieces. They are rich with unfinished stories, like a writer's prompt given by an invisible narrator, a couple of out-of-context word-images shimmying together on a dance floor. And at the same time they speak of the pure dynamism and raw beauty of marks on a dizzying city wall, or, I hope, on paper...
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... other Recent Work...
Wendy Artin, Oleander, 7"x9", watercolor on Fabriano Ingres, 2016
It has been fabulous to paint the blossoms that distract me as I am out for a run!
So there will be several of these in the exhibit too. Ephemeral. Some scissors as well.
And what would an exhibit be without some sanguine watercolors of the figure?
The most beautiful poses cannot be held for long: each drawing session is a challenge and a joy.
Wendy Artin, Callista another stretch, 8"x14", watercolor on Canson Mi-Teintes, 2017
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Wendy Artin, Rome, Cinema America 2017, photo by Lily Artin Boschin
WENDY ARTIN - HERE TODAY
click here to see the Exhibit on Gurari Collections' new Website
new Watercolor Wallscapes and other Recent Work
GURARI COLLECTIONS, 460 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02118
opening FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2017
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I am pleased to share this beautiful piece written about me in Seamless Expression, Stephen Berry's blog on watercolor. I find it amazing that he was able to understand so much through observation of my work, as we have never met!
Thank you Stephen! (click to see article)
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Meanwhile, last shown in Paris and London, Parthenon Frieze paintings from Athens...
Wendy Artin, Athens Parthenon 1, Horsemen and Marshal, 108 x 133 cm, watercolor on handmade rag paper, 2016
Three of my new meter-high sepia watercolors of the Parthenon Frieze were last on display with Pierre Passebon at the Galerie du Passage.
This series is inspired by travels to Athens where I saw the bas-relief fragments that had remained on the Parthenon for 100 years longer than those at the British Museum, now displayed in the Acropolis Museum... Not heavily cleaned or restored, the slabs remain hauntingly abstracted and stained by years of erosion. These new paintings are a continuation of my artistic exploration and admiration of the Parthenon frieze.
The Galerie du Passage is located at 20-26 galerie Vero-Dodat, Paris 1er. For telephone inquiries, call +184.108.40.206.01.13 - email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Along with Stephen Berry's lovely piece, here are some recent writings about my work:
Click here to read Craggy Face, by James Cogswell, from the academic workshop: Wendy Artin's Engagement with the Classical Past, Kelsey Museum, October 2015.
To read a beautiful article about my Parthenon Frieze series, click here Wendy Artin -- Translating Marble Onto Paper, article by Grace Dane Mazur the Arts Fuse, November 2011 (click on box in upper left-hand corner to read black text on white background)
Read Poet Jessica Fisher's sensitive and eloquent Introduction, Being in Time, written for the catalogue for the 2015 exhibition at Gurari Collections, From the Roman Studio.
Rocks, Paper, Memory: Wendy Artin's Watercolor Paintings of Ancient Sculpture, the 2015 Exhibition at the Kelsey Museum in Ann Arbor, Michigan, featuring more Parthenon frieze paintings, is now entirely on-line.