dm contemporary is pleased to present A FEW CONVERSATIONS ABOUT COLOR, a group exhibition in which six painters and a sculptor take part in a chromatic discourse curated by Joanne Mattera. Intense hues, hard edges, soft surfaces, the tooth of paint-saturated canvas: each contributes to the conversation with its own accent and inflection.
"I selected those who work formally in a reductive and geometric mode, who collectively employ a range of mediums to express their chromatic strategies," says Mattera, a gallery artist who curates regularly. "Within those parameters, the seven artists in this exhibition (I include myself among them), explore structure and gesture, working in a way that is physically vigorous or conceptually driven, materially rich or coolly uninflected. There's no black or white here, so to speak, as the fabric of this exhibition is one of interaction."
The featured artists are Damien Hoar de Galvan, Joanne Freeman, Ruth Hiller, Julie Karabenick, Matthew Langley, Nancy Natale and Joanne Mattera. The exhibition opens on Friday, January 23 and remains on view through February 28.
Damien Hoar de Galvan pieces recycled materials into small, rather playful structures with a casualist bent. As much pedestaled paintings as sculptures, they have a scrappy, anthropomorphic presence. Hoar de Galvan maintains his studio in Boston, and his work appears courtesy of the Boston gallery, Carroll and Sons.
Joanne Freeman combines gesture and geometry into large-scale paintings that call on the full arc of her arm for their fluid, looping shapes. Much of her current work was influenced by the light (and shadow) of Otranto, Italy, where she recently spent a productive residency. Of that time she says, "I became obsessed with the variations of white and the positioning of color against it." She maintains a studio in SoHo.
Ruth Hiller lays gently rounded geometric shapes onto wooden or plexi substrates that echo those same contours. The paintings are visually inviting, even seductive. Hiller works in a territory she describes as "evocative of something slightly familiar yet unknown." She divides her time between Boulder, Colorado, and New York City. Her studio is in SoHo.
Julie Karabenick uses asymmetry and tension to bring shards of color into stringent counterpoise. Succulent hues and precise execution are the hallmarks of her painting. Karabenick maintains a studio in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She is the founder and editor of Geoform.net, a scholarly online curatorial project dedicated to contemporary geometric abstraction.
Matthew Langley paints large color fields with a richly textured surface. The paintings are borne of divergent strategies: one of building up, the other of minimizing. The result is a deft mix of brilliant and subtle coloration in relatively large, clearly delineated areas. A viewer is rewarded with contemplative looking. Langley maintains a studio on the Upper West Side.
Inspired by the idea of the accumulation of memories, Nancy Natale assembles a multitude of elements–including book parts, record albums and found objects, all secured with upholsterers' tacks--to create compositions resonant with color, pattern and rhythms. She describes her work not as painting but as bricolage, which offers, she says, "rich content, amusing juxtapositions and surprise." Natale lives and works in Western Massachusetts.
Joanne Mattera works in a manner she calls "lush minimalism." Her small, luminous color fields, composed of layers of translucent wax paint, allow hue to develop by accretion as much from the inside out as from the outside in. She divides her time between Manhattan and Massachusetts. She maintains the Joanne Mattera Art Blog, in which she reports on exhibitions in New York City and elsewhere.