Thursday, February 05, 2009

Pittsburgh Art Happenings: 2/6-7/09

Predictably, this first weekend of February is packed with openings after the typical January layoff. The feast or famine proposition is once again in full force... there's little chance that you are going to see everything, so take a miute or two to identify a couple priorities.


The first Friday of the month (almost) always brings Unblurred (on Penn Avenue between Garfield and Friendship), and as usual there is a lot to see. Your first stop should be Clay Penn (5111 PENN AVE), where Laura Jean has put together PRINTS N'AT, a collection of choice work by Bob LaBobgah, David Pohl, Bob Ziller and yours truly. I'm quite happy to be put together with these three distinguished artists, as they have many years of art-making experience between them. My contributions for the show constitute a photographic postmortem for the "American Dream". Stop by between 7 and 9PM.

Imagebox (4933 PENN AVE) is featuring the collages of Richard Schnap, in a show entitled "Strange Channels". If you've been a habitue of the local art scene for any length of time, you are already familiar with his work. Lauren Toohey entered the Pittsburgh consciousness relatively recently, but has been prolific in her output. She is presenting a steamy assortment of her paintings along with Elisabeth Scott under the title SEXUAL at Most Wanted Fine Art (5015 PENN AVE).

In recognition of Black History Month, Garfield Artworks (4931 PENN AVE) is offering "The Biko Museum Experience", as well as "Facemadics" by craftsman and artist Diamond Axe. I've seen Homewood resident Emory Biko's work at the Mattress Factory, and I recommend you take a breath or two before appreciating his hard-hitting social commentary. Meanwhile Ed Steck has some commentary of his own regarding the degradation of the American landscape. His reception for the METAL NJIGHT (4919 PENN AVE) series is at Modern Formations .

Due to my frequent attendance at Unblurred, I never make it over to Shadyside's monthly art walk. But I just might make the effort this time to see Thommy Conroy' solo of paintings over at Steve Mendelson's gallery (5874 Ellsworth Avenue, 6-8PM). Conroy used to be co-owner of the now defunct (but always spectacular) La Vie on Butler Street in Lawrenceville. There used to be a time when I saw him almost weekly, and I've often wondered how he's been spending his hours. This looks like the perfect opportunity to find out.

No doubt I'll end my art travels with a stop at Zombo Gallery for the opening of Adam Waddell's paintings. This guy is pretty brash. During last year's Art All Night he hung up a portrait of a smiling "Chinaman" accompanied by a "Rising Sun" flag. With this kind of geographical and cultural confusion as an example, I can only imagine what type of stuff his disordered mind can create. Good thing I don't have to speculate anymore.


Pittsburgh Center for the Arts has turned over all of their spaces, and the opening reception for the new exhibitions are this weekend (5:30-8:00PM). Patricia Bellan-Gillen's ZOO.Logic+ looks intriguing, with her "vast planes of vivid color and masterfully drafted animal imagery". I love all creatures... big, small, and painted. God only knows what the Society of Yoruba Beads will offer with their Transformations... and "generative processes" by Los Angeles-based C.E.B. Reas and Berlin-based Marius Watz sounds equally enigmatic. But everything will certainly be brought under the blinding light of infinite clarity at the Associated Artists of Pitsburgh show, which celebrated its organization's longevity by asking their members to come up with pieces inspired by the theme "99". Overwhelmed patrons can check out the ambiguously titled Video Retrospective, 1990-2009.

Panza Gallery (115 Sedgwick Street in Millvale) is featuring the work of U. of Pgh art grads Adrian Chin and Julian Betkowski. I'll get a preview of the work tonight, but readers of this blog will have to make due with the promotional image for the show. I know it sparks my interest. The opening reception is from 6-9PM.

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Blogger Tibi said...

Congratulations for the show at Clay Penn. Wish I were there. Miss these openings/events on Penn.

4:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, how did you feel about your entry? Tell us something about the night?

8:24 AM  

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