Andrew Schoultz ruminates on the decline of Western civilization and the impulse to conquer in his current solo show at San Francisco’s Hosfelt Gallery, “Blown to Bits.” The exhibition features several site-specific installations as well as new paintings and works on paper.
In Gabriele Viertel’s photos, female subjects float in a dark abyss. The fabrics of their elegant gowns billow around them, their bodies blossoming like exotic flowers. The German-born, Netherlands-based photographer prefers to shoot the majority of her work underwater. A dramatic, chiaroscuro lighting defines her photographs: her models’ pastel-colored dresses and pallid skin appear to glow against the black background. Viertel’s work is currently featured in the group show “Road to Elysium” at Heist Gallery in London.
Berlin-based artist Reka recently visited San Francisco to paint a colorful, Cubist-inspired mural in a quiet part of the SOMA district. With his work from the past year, Reka has increasingly moved away from figuration. Though his new mural has two female characters at its center, he fractured his subject matter into geometric shapes that evolve into design elements. The clean lines and rounded forms evoke an Art Deco aesthetic, which Reka underscores with his retro-inspired color palette.
No more than a few inches high, these tiny paintings by Indiana-based artist Mab Graves are very much in the spirit of the winter season. In the slightly off-putting style of Big Eyes’ Margaret Keane (Vol 34), her dolly-eyed misfits adventure through haunting wintery landscapes and county fairs. Inspired by fairytales and classic literature, along the way they make friends with characters like dachshunds and the Dish who ran away with the Spoon. They always seem to be fleeing- emancipated from the bleakness of reality into Graves’ dream world.
Kevin Peterson’s subjects exist somewhere between a wintery city and sunny Houston, where the artist is currently based. Do a web search on his art, and the response is polarizing. Hyperrealism has become a controversial art form- most admire the excruciating detail, while others disagree with copying tags or photographs. Without question, Petersons’ portraits of children in a graffiti-colored world are emotional and ironic. His current show at Thinkspace gallery, “Remnants”, portrays his own fantasy-urban jungle.
Marshmallow snow, bologna mountain ranges, and milk lakes define the landscapes of Barbara Ciurej and Lindsay Lochman’s photo series “Processed Views.” The artists utilized familiar American junk food to create artificial nature scenes that simultaneously repulse and fascinate. The series was intended as a commentary on America’s reliance on processed foods, which the artists described as a symptom of our collective detachment from nature. “As we move further away from the sources of our food, we head into uncharted territory replete with unintended consequences for the environment and for our health,” the artists wrote in their statement about the project.