The Caelum Gallery presented its first exhibition of the Spring 2012 season, hosting works by celebrated artists, Eddie Rehm, Holly Adams & Natsuko Hattori. The exhibit brought together raw artistic expression & style. The artists revealed all new works creatively pooling together a very well rounded exhibit for the savviest of collectors to the ambitious art patrons starting their own collection or looking to partake in the exhibits experience.
Rehm brings brash street art into the tame indoors. Although the titles of two of the works include the word ‘belligerent’ the works are better characterized by the adjective ‘exuberant’. For all the tumultuous intensity of the graffiti-like marks, the artist maintains control principally though the use of symmetry. He also unifies his works by other means such as framing one painting with a black, paint-spattered drop cloth, and another by adding another layer of marks on industrial plastic. Rehm’s imagery is so hidden in a maze of marks that the viewer is unsure if he is seeing robotic figures or a depiction of pure energy.
“Soft” sculpture has been a genre for decades and it has gained momentum as the crossover of crafts and fine art has become accepted. Soft sculpture has an innate friendliness to it, as opposed to the more aggressive media of metal and stone. Hattori’s sculptures evoke clouds, beehives or other natural phenomena that hang in the air. Color is very difficult to control in sculpture, but the artist uses color persuasively and dramatically. The viewer cannot help wondering about the weight of the suspended sculpture. The stuffed fabric they are made of speaks of lightness, but the mass of the sculptures seems to give it considerable weight, and the tension between the two adds to their appeal.
Adam’s work is about the ephemeral, things that are on the border between existing and not existing. In one painting, for instance, an angel is depicted with her back to the viewer, as though she is in the process of disappearing. Another work, although it appears to be a solid relief sculpture, is made of paper toweling, and the all-white work seems to dissolve as one looks at it. Other paintings come in and out of focus like the Northern Lights, lovely in their nuanced colors. A series of miniature paintings depict abstract waves, which, although frozen in one position, are intrinsically fleeting.
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Rachel Lee Hovnanian, Leila Heller Gallery, September 2014
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