24 May 2009


Laurie Trok and Andres Ortiz Ferrari show at Monk's, 3634 Penn Ave in Lawrenceville


Deconstruction Workers (Andres Ortiz Ferrari and Laurie Trok) are opening their first collaborative installation this Saturday night at Monk’s (3634 Penn Avenue) from 7-11 PM.

Penumbrae :: Construct 1.0 explores the relationships between shadows and form by creating an environment filled with paper cutouts and stencils that ebb and flow through the space. Inspired by cave drawings, petroglyphs, and street art, the Deconstruction Workers weave iconic glyphic imagery through an endless web of contrast, evoking a primordial yet modern sacred space that changes and moves as the viewer finds their way through this other world. Filled with a parallel entanglement of lyriform sound, chaos finds its order.

Head over to Monk’s on Saturday and experience a space of partial illumination, as shadow covers, surrounds and obscures a dreamlike cosmos.

( $20 gets you a stencil of the artists’ choice when the show comes down next month! )

16 May 2009

Elise Rugolo and Adrienne Borkowski at the Framery

Elise and Adrienne have a lovely show up at the Framery in Lawrenceville.

Elise Rugolo creates small square collage paintings. Elise is a wonderful colorist who favors rich ruby reds, oranges and peacock blues. Her palette is accentuated by the surface patina she creates using cut paper, pattern, bits of fabric and yarn, spots of paint and wax.

Adrienne Borkowski creates cigar box assemblages containing found objects from nature and handmade objects. Using boxes and small glass flasks, Adrienne's work reminded me of mysterious evidence found, collected and contained.

(Image: Elise Rugolo, The Old Neighborhood, Acrylic, collage, digital transfer on birch)

The Framery:
4735 Butler St
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 687-2102

15 May 2009

Art City vs. Art:21

The last few nights I've watched 3 installations in a series called Art City via Netflix.
The series interviews mainly artists in their studios. A handful of critics, arts writers and dealers are in the mix as well. The list of artists interviewed is quite impressive: Brice Marden, Chuck Close, Neil Jenney, Louise Bourgeois, Agnes Martin, Richard Tuttle, John Baldessari-- just to name a few. I thought the interviews were fascinating but they give just a snapshot of each artist- spending 5 minutes at a time and then jumping back and forth from one to the other-- most frustrating!! It's the ADD approach to interviewing. The artists have really interesting things to say about their art-making processes, sacrifices they've made, money, the art world, exhibiting....etc. But once you start getting hooked- they're on to the next person.

It seems like this show was a precursor to one of my all time favorite programs about art, Art:21-- so incredibly inspiring and interesting- I love watching these! Art:21 introduced me to some really well known artists and then invited me inside the world they create with their art. You learn so much about a person from seeing them in their studio, watching them make their art, listening to how they talk about their work, what their thoughts are about how it fits into the world.

Art:21 rocks, Art City- not so much.

12 May 2009

Opera for a Small Room, a collaboration between Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller at the Carnegie Museum

Walk into a darkened, cave-like gallery space at the Carnegie Museum of Art and in the center of the room is a large wooden crate structure. A rectangular cutout window in the wood allows us to peek into a room filled with hundreds of records, turntables, old radios and antiques, piled upon tables, shelves and floor, odd light fixtures-one made from a Heinz tomato can. A ghostly shadow sometimes appears while records switch on and off remotely and a soundtrack bounces from inside to out. A collage of sounds creates a landscape for the ears: a man's deep husky voice, a soprano opera singer, noises from the world outside the lively room. As the sound of a train approaches, the entire lighting/sound mood inside the room changes- dims, becomes quiet and is overtaken by the whirring/ jackhammering/rush of the train. The lights sway- the tables all shake.

This is a fantastic installation by Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller -- imaginative, mesmerizing, engaging!!

From their website: There are twenty-four antique loudspeakers out of which come songs, sounds, arias, and occasional pop tunes. There are almost two thousand records stacked around the room and eight record players, which turn on and off robotically syncing with the soundtrack. The sound of someone moving and sorting albums is heard. The audience cannot enter the room. To see and hear his world, they have to look through windows, holes in the walls, and cracks in the doorways and watch his shadow move around the room.

On view until July 24, 2009 at the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh--- don't miss it!!!