August 22 - October 11, 2008
Bonnie Baxter was born inTexarkana, Texas. She has lived inVal-David, Quebec, since 1969. She has taught in the Print Media Program at Concordia University, Montreal since 1984, and she has lectured extensively and given workshops in Canada,Mexico, the USA and Turkey.
In the artist’s words, “I have been an artist for a long time… making things, trying things, looking for a true narrative, a narrative of how life is… I see that life is not complicated, but it is dense, and that it is easy to get caught in this density – a tiny insect in a mass of layers, struggling to find the surface. I would rather see the layers as opportunities, evidence of the simultaneity, synchronicity, serendipity that abounds in life. Each series of work I produce acts as a semi-autobiographical translation of life – finding beauty in the commonplace: seeing that the extraordinary is common. Rewind reflects some 15 years of this practice, combining work from several series. It includes a selection of work from my large-scale digital print series on canvas, Les coquelicots and Baphomet, as well as the video imagery of Surreal and Cityscape. With imagery drawn from my travels, my art practice, and my everyday life, their layers play a counterpoint, sublime, ridiculous, and everything in between. Rewind’s center piece Babel, attempts to find sense and beauty in the diversity rather than a lesson in humility.”
The international tour of Bonnie Baxter: Rewind, a multi-media exhibit, is being offered by Laurentides Museum of Contemporary Art in Canada, with stops between 2006 and 2009 in Newfoundland, Alberta and Quebec, Canada, Fort Myers, Florida and Memphis, Tennessee in the USA, and Istanbul, Turkey. The artist acknowledges the generous support of the Concordia University Part-Time Faculty Association (CUPFA).
October 24 – December 6, 2008
With her ongoing series of black, gray, and white paintings titled “Landscape Before Dying,” begun in 1997, Mamie Holst explores the inspiring abstract landscape within her experience of Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome. She became ill with CFIDS in 1989 and was forced to return to her hometown of Fort Myers, Florida. Ms. Holst has mined her syndrome related sensations for her work’s static, tremor, crosshairs, elegance, distortion, drift, space, targets, voids, isolation, and peace. When asked if it is important to her that the viewer be aware of her illness she says “I don’t think it makes any difference to the painting, if the viewer is aware of my illness. I would hope that these paintings have a much broader scope than that; more about the mysteries of life. In a personal sense I like to make the viewer aware of the illness because even though it’s become epidemic, and there’s plenty of information available about it, there are still many people, including doctors, who choose to remain ignorant and brush it off as psychologically rather than physiologically based.”
Ms. Holst also notes that “I feel like I don’t really think anymore. Of course I still think or else I wouldn’t function obviously, but it’s a much more basic type of thinking. It’s like if you try and think big thoughts, your brain hits a blank wall. When painting, it just sort of comes out. While looking at a finished painting, I can’t really remember how I did it. I know where I put the lines down etc., but most of the decision making is more subconscious.”
Mamie Holst was born in Florida in 1961. She received an AA degree in 1981 from Edison Community College, a BFA degree from the University of West Florida, in 1984, and an MFA degree from the School of Visual Arts, New York City, in 1987. Ms. Holst has exhibited her work in the United States, Canada and Europe. She is represented by Feature Inc. in New York City. Her solo exhibition there in 2003 was listed in Artforum, Best of 2003, December Issue, as being one of the top ten shows in the world that year by Bruce Hainley, contributing editor. A John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship was awarded to her in 2005. Mamie lives and works in Fort Myers, Florida.
January 16 – February 21, 2009
The works of Lilian Garcia-Roig are anchored in the tradition of landscape painting. But, that is just a stepping stone to what are her main concerns. While her paintings do have the initial impact of looking like landscape ‘interiors’ it becomes immediately clear her work is less illusionistic than a first glimpse might suggest.
“By creating the illusion of recognizable trees, I draw the viewers comfortably into an assumption that what they perceive will be glimpses of conventional space. Up close, however, the images break down and the lush, gestural paint marks, the squeezed-out patches and the occasional raw canvas help instead, to reinforce the two-dimensional character of abstract painting.” – Lilian Garcia-Roig
Lilian Garcia-Roig studied at Southern Methodist University where she received a B.F.A., and at theUniversityofPennsylvaniawhere she received an M.F.A. Ms. Garcia-Roig has been Professor of Art atFloridaStateUniversity,Tallahassee, since 2001 and prior to that, from 1991 to 2001, she was an Associate Professor of Art at The University of Texas, Austin.
To her credit, Ms. Garcia-Roig has received numerous prestigious awards. Among those awards are Florida Individual Artist Fellowship in 2008, Artist Endowment Grant, State of Florida, Milton and Sally Avery Fellow, MacDowell Colony, NH, and was a recipient of the Painters and Sculptors Grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation, NYC, all in 2006. In 2004 she was the featured artist for Hispanic Heritage Month, State ofFlorida. She was the Visiting Artist of the Ludwig Foundation, Havana Cuba in 1999. Other professional experiences include a Visiting Artist Residency at theVermontStudioCenter, a Fellowship Award in Painting from the Mid-America Arts Alliance/National Endowment for the Arts and Kimbroug Fund Award from theDallasMuseum.
Garcia-Roig’s work is included in numerous public collections including the ASU Art Museum, Arizona State University in Tempe, Austin Museum TX, Blanton Museum at the University of Texas, El Paso Museum TX, Museum of South Texas in Corpus Christi, Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin TX, Polk Museum in Lakeland FL, San Angelo Museum of Art, San Angelo TX and the Tyler Museum of Art, Tyler TX.
March 13 – April 9, 2009
Syd Solomon (1917–2004) was born inUnion Town,PAand studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. After serving in Europe during WWII, he attended L’Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. InSarasotahe studied at the Ringling School of Art and Design.
This exhibit is the first survey of paintings that focuses exclusively on Solomon’s career long involvement with the color black. The exhibit includes 30 works selected from the estate’s collection dating from 1945 – 1989. Solomon’s works are held in numerous permanent collections including: The Baltimore Museum of Art, Butler Institute of American Art, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Norton Gallery of Art, Tampa Museum, Tate Gallery in London, Tel Aviv Museum and the Whitney Museum of Art, to name a few.
Though the use of the color black has been an important element of Syd Solomon’s work since the beginning of his career, there has never been an exhibition devoted exclusively to his use of the color. The paintings in this exhibit represent some of his most complex works in which black plays a crucial roll. For an artist whose formal interests had to do with layers of colors that are punctuated by gesture, black served as the ultimate context from which all other light emerges.
Solomon once mentioned the effect that Georges Rouault’s work had on him when he first encountered it during his studies at L’Ecole des Beaux-Arts in 1945. He said that he was taken by Rouault’s use of black, the heavy lines that often delineate the imagery, because they structured the compositions through their rhythms. Solomon followed suit in several studies done inParisin 1945.
By the late 1950s, Solomon had met Franz Kline among other Abstract Expressionists inNew York. The two men had much in common, as both were born aroundWilkes-Barre,Pennsylvania, seven years apart. Both had played football and come from rough beginnings. Solomon visited Kline’s studio on several occasions and was influenced by Kline’s black brushstroke paintings. The scale of Solomon’s marks increases during this time, as is seen in his use of gelatin rollers that made large gestural pathways across his canvases and works on paper from the early 1960s. Black, dark blue or dark brown predominated in his roller works and it was his work from this period that was acquired by the Solomon R. Guggenheim, the Wadsworth Athenaeum andWhitneyMuseum, among others.
Solomon’s experimental use of water-based polymers, the precursors to acrylic paint, led him to develop a unique understanding of layering, which manifested itself in his invention of a resist technique using spray paints and masking paste on colored canvas grounds. Solomon’s technique had a precedent in the watercolor tradition, in which oral atomizers are used to spray wet colors over existing dried colors saved in certain areas by wax. Solomon was able to make a much larger version of the resist effect using his technique on large canvases. Although Solomon used many colors for grounds to receive his spray applications, it is certainly black which absorbs all other colors so absolutely. Most of the paintings in this exhibition were started on black grounds.
April 23 – 30, 2009
This exhibition features the work from Edison State College art students and includes painting, drawing, design and photography.
June 26 – August 12, 2009
This annual favorite features the artwork of local and national artists that has been donated to benefit ACT, Inc. It will be located on the Edison State College campus, in the new Special Collections Gallery, first floor of the Rush Library (J-Bldg).