Week two of my attempt to visit (almost) every exhibition in Boston this fall (you can read week one here) I’m off to a bit of a slow start, and I haven’t gotten that far off the beaten path (yet), as you will see. If I missed anything cool, or you have any recommendations for my next round of gallery visits, get in touch.

I missed the opening for “People Watching: Then and Now” at the Fitchburg Art Museum, but I plan on checking out the show soon. If anyone wants to ride out there and visit the show with me, let me know!

Last week I a few people reached out to let me know what they thought of my show reviews. A couple of people thought I was trashing everything, while a few others seemed to think I was going easy on everyone. I think both groups are kinda missing the point of the exercise, so let me clarify things before I go any further. The following post is just a quick reaction to everything I saw. It is meant to be fairly light reading, and to possibly start some conversations, but is definitely not a serious piece of art criticism. If you think I am an idiot, or I totally missed the point of some piece of art, feel free to reach out and give me a piece of your mind. I welcome the feedback, and the chance to dive deeper into nerdy art talk.

So here is round two, five days of art, in the order I saw it.

Day 1

Feeling Feeling

A collaborative exhibition by Emmy Bright & J.R. Uretsky

The Distillery Gallery

I visited this show for the last round of gallery visits, but kept it out of the post because I was thinking about writing a more in depth review of it. Ultimately, I am just not sure I have the vocabulary (or the time) to do this show justice, so I will just say I enjoyed it. Playful and thought provoking, what else can you ask for? That said, the show could have used a little editing. There were a few pieces that jumped out at me, not because they were bad, but because they didn’t seem to fit into the show. It’s a tall order for artists to curate their own work, but the Distillery Gallery has always been a run what you brung kinda spot.

Day 2

Luxury Waters

Pat Falco with Tory Bullock and Robin Banks

Gallery Open

Pat’s work really shines when he takes his illustrations and expands on them into a larger narrative. After seeing this, I am kinda bummed I skipped out on his Boston Campaign Headquarters installation last year.

Day 3

Misadventures of a 21st-Century Naturalist

Mark Dion

ICA Boston

I felt a real kinship to this work, for reasons that I could not really put my finger on. Hearing the artist speak about his work solidified that feeling, and I felt myself wondering if the things he was saying hit with everyone there the same way. Is this a universal thing, or just something that really connected with me.

Day 4

Richard Yarde: Portraits

UMass University Hall Gallery

I did no research other than googling the address before walking into this show. Obviously, I was thrilled to step into a moving show of portraiture. My favorite piece was a small, oddly cropped, untitled piece, that seemed to be a bit of an afterthought. (I stole the image above from their instagram, the piece is on the far left of this pic) I left thinking about how I live in a city packed with universities and I only bother to visit their galleries when my friends are showing.

Sally Ladd Cole

Sloane Merrill Gallery

Apologies in advance to Sally Ladd Cole. I walked into the gallery and immediately got side tracked by some beautiful still life paintings by Shira Avidor. Sometimes a painters technique is so nice that you end up staring at a painting of bread for a solid 10 minutes and forget to look at the main show in the gallery.

Dysgraphia

Katina Huston

Chase Young Gallery

The contrast between the ink washed plexiglass (I think?) and the nice thick strokes of oil paint is really striking. Beyond that these pieces didn’t really do it for me.

Dmitri Cavander

Soprafina Gallery

Nicely painted Bay Area style landscapes. Two galleries in a row that seem to be celebrating thick strokes of highly pigmented oil paint. At this point, I am feeling good, even found myself enjoying a piece that turned out to be an Ipad drawing.

Abridged

Robert Richfield

Gallery Kayafas

Gallery Kayafas always finds a way to make me care about photography. I liked the man vs nature aspect of the photographs. One piece in particular, which depicted people flowing over the bridge, while water rushing below really stood out for me.

Writhe & Resolve: Aspects of Arcadia

Aristotle Forrester

Matter & Light

No idea how long this gallery has been here, because I have never even bothered to go down to this area of 450 Harrison. How lazy is that? It’s like five steps down from the other galleries.

Anyways, these paintings were an orgy of brush strokes. They look like paintings that were created by a fictional artist in a movie scene, just dancing and hacking away with the brush… except I’m not hating them. Some of the compositions are a bit off kilter, but I like the explorations of the different marks and textures that can be made with paint.

Joseph Adolphe

M Fine Arts

Next door to the last place, and again, never even knew this gallery was here. I wasn’t really feeling the animal paintings, but the still life pieces were interesting. At this point am getting hungry and I’m annoyed that I didn’t hate still life paintings (twice).

Raul Diaz

Adelson Galleries

This looks like the art at a really fancy hotel.

POUR. PUSH. LAYER.

Jeannie Motherwell

Rafius Fane Gallery

This gallery has been full of surprises since it opened. Their programming seems to be all over the place, but every time I walk in I see something interesting. I guess I like it here.

I have recently started come to terms with the fact that there is the way I like to paint, and then there is the way that some ideas need to be painted. Along with this realization has come a renewed interest in the different ways that paint can be spread around.

These pieces were really beautiful explorations of the properties of paint and pigments. I should have stuck around and listened to the artist speak–maybe she would have revealed some deeper meaning–but I left happy after simply taking in the lovely surfaces.

Day 5

The Paperweight That Keeps My World From Blowing Away

A Solo Exhibition by Nick Zaremba

Thomas Young Gallery

I feel like I am the only person in Boston who has not seen much of Nick’s work. The show was quirky and fun. The pieces that went beyond single characters and created more intricate scenes were particularly nice.

That’s it for this week.

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