Monday, February 28, 2011

Hallucination invitation:

There is currently an excellent show open at Kent Place Gallery.
I am gallery director there -- the gallery is on the campus of Kent Place School in Summit, NJ, where I also teach art.

There will be a closing reception for the artist on Friday, March 11 (see below for details). Summit is not too far away (geographically-- i.e., it is in northern New Jersey), and Bruce is an amazing artist.  I hope will see you all there at the reception!

sweet stain, oil, acrylic, pencil & ink on canvas, paper, wood & cashmere 
Bruce Stiglich
click image to enlarge


Bruce Stiglich’s “Accumulation/Hallucination”

Kent Place Gallery Monday, February 14 – Friday, March 11
closing reception 6—8 pm on Friday March 11.

Works in the show combine painting, drawing and the gathering of found objects to create complex, beautiful and densely painted collections of surfaces and images.

“Sweet Stain” (above), uses a wide range of means, including oil paint, acrylic, graphite, ink, wood, and, crucially, cashmere. A tiny scrap of stained cashmere formed the starting point of this complex work. Stiglich painted a portrait of the scrap of fabric, enlarged and copied his own painting, represented it again in another way, again and again, and each new view became a part of the whole. The cluster of representations contains mirrorings and repetitions, but also surprises that open up space for the imagination. It is a kaleidoscopic outgrowth of remembering and reflecting. Yet the subject (if that shred of stained fabric is really the subject) remains enigmatic.

Such a ceaseless return to a mute and mysterious object, and the possibly obsessive circling around it with art, brings to mind Citizen Kane’s rosebud, Proust’s madeleine, that little scrap of blue velvet so prized by Frank in David Lynch’s film. The point for me is that Stiglich creates an exciting, almost hallucinatory visual world, and the work resists collapsing into an easy interpretation.

New York Times art critic Ken Johnson has said, “Style in Bruce Stiglich's work is psychological, as the seemingly obsessive repetition of tiny marks that build up into dense vibrating textures suggest the feverishly compulsive activity of an inspired monomaniac. You may be reminded of Jackson Pollock's drip works or folk artists who are driven to decorate their homes with countless polka dots or flattened beer cans.”

Bruce says, “My work is a compiling of personal history. I work in series. These series become installations. They span an extended period of time. It begins with a discovery of found images, objects and doodles that to me seem incomplete. The process of completing the images is self referential in nature.”

Bruce Stiglich’s art work has been seen in numerous exhibitions in recent years in New York City and the New York area, in Pennsylvania, and in Miami, Florida. He currently teaches at Parsons School of Design, and has also taught at Pont-Aven School of Art in France, and at the State University of New York. He has been a curator of several art exhibitions at MyPAC, in Miami, FL.

Kent Place Gallery

42 Norwood Ave.
Summit, NJ 07902

Monday, February 21, 2011

I really like this breakdown of a workspace- it articulates reality as I see it-

A place of work: in this sense of the meaning, it is the artist’s identified location of work. It is an address, an office, a workplace. It is an actual and psychological place that compells the artist to go to work. It legitimises the artist’s practice. It locates the artist in a geographic place but also, by extension, in society.

A place to work: this refers to the physical studio, light, heat, equipment and facilities that enable the artist to get immersed in the artistic process and in the making of art products. It is also a place for other work to happen such as research and planning. This definition is about work happening.

A place for work: this definition brings in the other functions of the studio - a place where work is kept; where work is waiting to be finished; where collected references are displayed and stored; a place where work is exhibited.

PS- I am about to create this sort of rubric for my body, as current events unfolding seem to have been predicted many years ago by Margaret Atwood.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


It was great to get started today officially on my February-through-August residency-- at least in the sense of getting keys and finding out which studio will be mine. I was glad to meet Emma and Evonne again, and to be introduced to the other artists.  Actual move in will be soon.

Ken Weathersby, painting / paper collage (acrylic & graphite over printed image of linen, with printed paper inset)
5.5" x 4.25" , 2-11

I've made some very tiny works lately, like the one above, and before yesterday I actually never thought about that being a reaction to the crowdedness of the rather small studio I've been painting in for the last ten years.  

These little pieces might be models or mockups, or they might be works in their own right. 

I am definitely thinking about a containing spatial element and aspects of architectural space in planning my next paintings, pieces I want to make at Aferro.  

So beginning to work in a different and bigger room might have more than simple practical advantages.

--Ken Weathersby

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Grid with gold leaf.

Detail with gold leaf added.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Over the last several weeks I’ve had a chance to print out more than 30 images shot on Market Street of the varied and random chewing gum marks found on the sidewalk. It’s been an exciting project to pursue, and one that I'll continue working with once the residency is finished. My current approach has been to crop in closely to each section of concrete and view each as a separate composition.

In the next versions that I’ll pursue, I’ll be utilizing the expansion joints as compositional elements, which will allow me to incorporate vertical, horizontal, and diagonal lines along with the random patterning created by the chewing gum markings.

It has taken quite a bit of experimenting to hone in on the post-processing of the images. Its important to me that there is sufficient contrast between the pavement and marks; I have taken a number of steps with each image to enhance the rich gray and black tones of each individual mark.

Each series of photos is displayed in a grid; while all of these photos document random mark making, I’m interested in the suggestion of order that a grid format provides.

The next step for this series involves adding gold leaf, by hand, to individual marks on each photo. My intentions are to re-examine familiar and overlooked relationships between social interactions and physical spaces. Gold leaf, in this project, functions as a signifier of value—raising questions about what has intrinsic worth and what is discarded, both materially and personally, in contemporary society.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Thank you!

I am delighted to become a member of your community! can't wait to start (my residency) and get to meet you all.

here are the images from my recent natural history museum project.