Friday, May 14, 2010

Cornish BFA 2010

Kris Dales' handmade mark-making tools

As I mentioned yesterday, Sharon Arnold and I headed down to check out the Cornish BFA show. We ran into several artists out showing their support such as Diem Chau, Will Owen, Randy Wood, Robert Yoder, D.W. Burnam, Dawn Cerny, Michael Williamson, Claire Johnson and Justin Lytle (one of last year's standout graduates). While I heard several folks say it's the best one in years, I haven't really followed it long enough to back that up. But I did see lots of great stuff and here are some my highlights.

Kris Dales

I loved Kris Dales' pyrographic works on paper. I'm so used to seeing Etsuko Ichikawa's swirling organic forms, that Kris' pieces were a jolt. The geometric patterns were beautiful. As the son of a Montana rancher who has his own brand (Y standing Z), this work was really compelling.

Allyce Wood

Reimagining nature through paper and string, Allyce Wood created a great installation in a corner of the gallery. I loved string-art in the 70s and it's great to see a new generation updating this.

Neutral Log Test by E. Dughi

It was so crowded last night that I probably would have missed the video gem by E. Dughi if Sharon hadn't excitedly told me I had to see it. {i} .... [you] is a text-based exchange between the artist and her partner. This piece was presented in two ways; I first watched it in a darkened room, almost as if we were watching it in a seedy adult theater from the 70s. I preferred the second presentation of three small monitors, each under 10 inches. This forced you to step closer and created a type of intimacy I haven't felt in a while.

Ashley Hempelmann

These large format photos by Ashley Hempelman were really nice. They reminded me of a forgotten 1920 photo shoot starring Clara Bow and friends. I'm not sure if it was intentional, but there was a beautiful, fragile tranny-vibe coming off them.

I also really liked Derek K.W. Ghorley's wooden minotaur hoofs, Nisse Ferguson's exploration of the Black Dahila and a few of Cameron Nagashima's digitally altered portraits really stopped me in my tracks.

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