Home is where the heart is as the old cliché goes. Since the dawn of civilization, men had always staked a place to call their own and so it goes for their fine-feathered friends. Men had caves and birds built nests. Making personal habitat a subject of choice that two artists, Jasper White & Steve Ellis, had their press preview for “Caves and Nests” at gallery nine5 in Nolita (North of Little Italy) last September 13th. It is their first time together in a single exhibition.
Jasper White at the front room of the gallery displayed the photographs of man caves that the artist discovered while traveling in Western Victoria, Australia. Instead of bars, men congregated in “sheds” filled with their memorabilia and collections of stuff. He said that all items in the photos belonged to the shed owners and staging of course had to be done to produce the composed images. It is a dynamic slice of human expression where no two sheds were alike (Ian’s Shed, Chris’s Shed, John’s Shed, et al.) as it provided an intimate and colorful voyeuristic peek into a world fashioned from individual tastes or idiosyncrasies. White’s photos balanced the vibrancy of rich elements but gave it thoughtful composition. There is a sense of lived in domesticity and not of a designed set where you can’t help but be fascinated. You feel that these men are devoted and fiercely protective of their caves as women are of their closets.
Steve Ellis for his part had two paintings inspired by his workspaces and the avian muses that fueled the focal imagery for his oeuvre. Birds build nests and humans when concentrating on making a habitat is said to be nesting. Ellis observed the winged source of inspiration from the windows of his upstate New York home (Barnstorming Swallow) and the pigeons seen from his urban studio on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The central subject in the pieces is rendered very sharply and emphasizing the wingspan coupled with the intensity of the swooping stance gives it an Alfred Hitchcock The Birds vibe. Quotidian scraps are being clutched by the birds to such as a Hershey Kiss pull-tab (it alludes to a previous series) and at the background on the front porch is a petition sign from a recent small town political drama. His works function as the magnifying glass on canvas to observe man’s relationship with his surroundings. The nuances are all there but it takes a hawk’s eye to spot it.
Habitats are of personal nature. Ellis and White in this dual exhibit manifest a verve and stark execution that gamely declares, “Home is where the ART is.”
Jasper White & Steve Ellis: Caves and Nests / On View: Sept. 14 – Oct. 12, 2012
Gallery Hours: Mon – Fri (11 am – 7 pm) / Sat (12 – 7 pm) & Sun (12 – 6 pm)
gallery nine5. 24 Spring Street. NYC, NY 10012
art review by: Oscar A. Laluyan
images from gallery nine5 courtesy of the artists
event photography by: Deukyun Hwang
- Bradley Hart Wastes Nothing With Latest Show
- The Art of SHAKA at gallery nine5
- Drawn Together: The Merging of Graffiti & Art Gallery
- Check out: FOUNTAIN NEW YORK ANNOUNCES MASSIVE STREET ART INSTALLATION FOR 2011 FAIR Ten Revered Artists Collaborate on a 100-Foot Installation from March 4–March 6, 12pm–7pm
- William Holman Gallery Blazing a Hot Trail of ART
Sign up for our newsletter!
Rachel Lee Hovnanian, Leila Heller Gallery, September 2014
- What might be the oldest symbol for the concept of ‘rebirth’? Well, if you go back to the cave paintings of about… »
- In 2012 an 84 year-old Roman Catholic nun and two male companions cut through three fences at the Y-12 nuclear weapons… »
- One of the highlights of the Chelsea opening night last week was Deborah Butterfield’s striking sculptures of horses,… »
- Several months ago I wandered into ClampArt on a Saturday afternoon and saw that the gallery was primarily filled with… »
- Satan Ceramics at Salon 94 When Michelle Grabner curated the Whitney Biennial a line was drawn, a declaration that there is… »
- My name is Tasha Lewis and I want to share with you the story of my global collaborative street art project Swarm The… »
- Christopher Le Brun at Friedman Benda Two painintgs by Christopher Le Brun photo from Friedman Benda Gallery Into each… »
- Another great art night in Chelsea (L-R) Joseph Gross with artist Ted Lawson The electric backdrop of art at Joseph… »
- A good crowd at David Benjamin Sherry opening in Danziger Gallery Artist David Benjamin Sherry David Benjamin Sherry… »
- Alexander Gray (in orange jacket) with the designer and models Vegan Grade Couture deserve Vegan Shoes With the FALL… »