Posts Tagged ‘11 Cross Gallery’

Adrian Frost

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

Adrian Frost has been an artist-in-residence at 11 Cross Gallery and the character of this space took its cue from his energy and work.  In person, Adrian is a powerful, compassionate and  inspiring personality.  He creates an enviroment around himself  that demands participation: there is no such thing as a passive observer in Adrian’s world.  This participation can be by stepping over a pile of salt cushioning a block of driftwood, crouching around a tipped form to view the reverse side or recoiling from the jagged edges of broken glass.

An encounter with Adrian is always memorable as is any encounter with his art.  At first, one is struck by the “arte povera” qualities: chipped plexiglass, broken planks, plateglass “mended” by masking tape  but on closer examination everything is beautifully crafted, deliberate and secure.  The appearance of fragility is purely deceptive as the strength of the artist’s message emerges.

"those who know speak not..." by Adrian Frost upright view courtesty the Image Factory

In his paintings, Adrian combats space forging not so much letters but forms that individually embody the power of the entire word.  Painted phrases such as: “improvised explosive device” or “have a nice day” invoke a new meaning when the space of each painted character is fought for with a passionate brush. In his sculptures, Adrian  chisels cryptic poems into weathered wood.  A long bench states: “those who know speak not, those who speak, know not”  and the interiors of the hewn letters are painstakingly lined in sterling silver leaf.  The installation of this piece, like many others, will shift depending on context and enviroment.  Sometimes, Adrian has exhibited “those who know…” as an upright bench, other times it has been shown face down, barely legible save by looking at a mirror placed underneath and partially obscured by coarse rock salt.   This sculpture, installed as a functional bench, invites body contact yet another placement puts the work out of reach by making its meaning more obscure.  Other artwork can be buried in dirt, shielded behind broken glass or flipped to the wall (“One Man” 11crossgallery Saugerties, NY 13 August 2010), and yet in another incarnation  (“Another Circle” Emerson Resort, Mount Tremper NY 4 June 2010), the same work can manifest a table, exhibit handsome framing or be mounted like a ladder inviting ascension.
Adrian’s next show “Introducing Furies: The Erinyes, Cthonic Deites Supernatural Personifications of the Anger of the Dead” opens September 3, 2011 3-5pm at The Art Colony Eureka Springs , Arkansas.

Nadja Petrov and “6 of 1 and Half Dozen of the Other”

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

When Fionn Reilly first approached me about a show at 11 Cross Gallery, he mentioned he wanted to do an installation together with Nadja Petrov.  I was immediately intrigued as I hadn’t seen Nadja’s work in a while but her elegant, intricate, and energetic style had always stuck with me.  How would Fionn, with his iconic confrontationalism harmonize with the subtle humming of Nadia’s art? Once I arrived at Ms. Petrov’s, it became clear how it would all come together.

Work in Progress on Nadja Petrov's drawing table

On her drawing table was one of the pieces she was working on for “6 of 1 and Half Dozen of the Other” , the upcoming installation at 11 Cross Gallery with Fionn.  It was not a large drawing but across its fine surface was a series of beautiful ink lines, almost etched into the paper with the kind of precision you would imagine a glass engraver would utilize.  But its the lines themselves that are so amazing- each one having what I like to call a “noun and a verb” – in otherwords, the lines have a particular character and they move in a specific manner.   Like artful traffic, they swerve carefully in their appointed directions and designated velocity until they form an active pattern of a bigger world.  It would be like a weaving except there isn’t a concrete form that is loomed but rather the white of the page itself is carved and suspended, the small irregular negative spaces sparkling like stars or rippling like waves on a windy lake.  I remembered the black and white photographs I had seen earlier in the week at Fionn Reilly’s studio/gallery on 212 (the old Lucky Chocolate’s building)- the abstract textures created by buildings and vegetation, the vibration that comes from restraint and suddenly the vision for “6 of 1 and Half Dozen of Another” was all coming together.  This upcoming show has truly been  created by these two artists- in this instance, at the opening this Sat June 5, 5-8 and during the entire run thru June 27th, I will be merely the enabler!

Nadja Petrov's Studio

As if all of this wasn’t enough, the night before Nadja and Fionn’s opening, 11 Cross Gallery is sponsoring another show at the Emerson Resort about 20 miles away in Mount Tremper.   Not only will this opening showcase area artists but it will be an inauguration for a new tradition of art presentation and exhibition for this luxury hotel.   So it has been like going holiday shopping to visit artist studios and find work to fill the two enormous gallery spaces combined creating about 2000 square feet of space!  Fortunately, Nadja did her part and is loaning me 2 large paintings about the color red and all its harmonies.  I shared with her that my son had recently told me women have evolved to be much more sensitive to variations in the color red than men are.  Scientists supposed women developed this ability as gatherers of berries and this sensitive  knowledge would keep their families from getting sick from fruit that wasn’t ripe enough or berries that could be fatal.  These paintings are richly in tune with this evolutionary predisposition of understanding of red and can be viewed starting this Friday, June 4 (Opening 5-9) thru June 27th at the Emerson Resort on Route 28.