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An Accumulation of
Short Critiques of Dallas Artists
and Exhibitions

Critiques + Photographs © 2000 by DARts Editor J R Compton

Reviews now on their own pages

Oh Boy! Toys & Games -  The EASL Benefit Exhibition & Auction, November 11, 2000

Paul Rogers Harris -  I Never Thought of Myself as an Artist - February, 2001 essay

Linda Finnell Memorial - Sometimes My Hand Has a Mind of Its Own - at SMU's Pollock

Chris Mars - Unearthly Delights at Forbidden

David Bates - at Dunn & Brown - 2000

Paul Booker & Steve Brudniak - at 500X

Philip Van Keuren - at the New Works Space at The MAC

 

Reviews still on this page

Dallas International Art & Antique Fair

Drawn - a group show of drawings at Barry Whistler

Day of the Dead - the Annual show at the Bath House

Plunge - the innaugrial exhibition at the U of Dallas's new art building - 2000

Michael Cross - at Michael Cross

James Drake - at The MAC

Danny Stover at Plush

Roger Winter - at Edith Baker

IR-6 & Digno - at the Bath House

Kathleen Kinkopf - Double Vision at Boyd

James Michael Starr - at Stone by Stone

 

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Dallas International Art & Antique Fair in the Dallas International Pavilion

December 2000

Intriguing show, all crammed into one largish temporary tent on the west end of Woodall Rogers freeway along Field Street, just north of The West End. We attended the Gala opening Thurs night, and I plan to return at least once more.

Just the Magrittes I'd never seen are worth the trip. And there's a bunch of Picasso paintings, drawings, and prints in that category. I counted two small Calder mobiles, some Monets and a lot of Van Gogh look-alikes. Some exquisite truly Tiffany lamps, superb jewelry — including some gorgeous dragonflies, lots of antiques, furniture and contemp art, too. There's also a lot of expensive rot.

One of our fun favorites was Patrick Hughes' op art Multiple Perspectives at Belloc Lowndes' booth. Visually fascinating. Combining pointed, 3-D canvas and architectural painting, his pictures appear to ripple or spacially warp as the viewer moves. It's a startling effect you have to see to accept. It was new to us...

"In 1961 Patrick Hughes coined the phrase, "Revese-perspective" ... He discovered that by painting on a three dimensional surface, he could create several optical illusions using reverse-perspective. Upon first inspection of his work, it appears to be a two dimensioonal painting. It is when one moves either left or right or up or down that the illusion is put into motioon...."

Entrance to the fair is free via the local dealers listed above. Nice to see the smattering of Impressionists, too. And all kinds of old stuff, some of it utter crap, of course. But mostly it was a fascinating romp through all kinds of art. - JRC    
     

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Drawn at Barry Whistler

November 2000

Barry Whistler's Drawn has drawings of every stripe and color and texture. My faves were goofy and cartoonish, like Michael C. McMillen's An Artist's Studio Drawn from Memory, ( 1998, graphite, ink & collage on 13 x 12.75" paper ), which notes all the important details of his backyard studio shed; William Hunter Dillard's comicly sexist The Wilted Flower:

The Shapely but Ineffectual Woman, ( 1970, 9 x 12" ink on paper ); The AAArt Guys' two 101 of the World's Greatest Ideas for Putt Putt Golf from 101 of the World's Greatest Sculpture Proposals, ( 2000, vertical dyptich, 30 x 40" each ), graphite, charcoal, colored pencil, collage, paint and glittler on paper; and Bob Wade's stereotypically Texican Texas Star, ( 1974, pencil and ink on paper, 40 x 40"). Nice to have at least one artist who's not afraid to be provincial.

I never even noticed the $10,000, 60 x 56" Exemplary Drawing, Inulin, ( 1998-99, graphite with collage on paper ) by old friend, Doug MacWithey. But the bottom of two 6-3/4 x 9-3/4" untitled gouche on paper pieces done this year by Danny Williams kept my eye, with a field of bright golden, snowflake stars falling Matisse-like down a royal blue sky.

I studied the long, white room — twice as tall as the highest art, splayed salon style across the wide and two short walls — gradually fill with people. Individuals traded out, but always, a knot of gregarious folk bottle-necked the walkway between galleries, just inside the front door.

In slow cycles the crowd thickened, then thinned. At quiet times, everyone was entirely engaged — enraptured even — with viewing and nodding and pointing at the art. In turn, loud moments solid with talk found no one even looking toward the walls — the art of conversation instead, taking charge. Gently and unaccountably the acoustically bright room cycled from quiet to a controlled din and back.

The predominant color of the crowd was, of course, black. Then gray towards darker blues, browns and a smattering of darker purples and maroon. One woman alone, in the knotted flow of muted hues was brilliant in Oriental orange and vivid, lustrous green. - JRC  

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Annual Day of the Dead show
at the Bath House

October 2000


I suppose if the Bath House Cultural Center had wanted a Fine Arts exhibition they should have invited more artists. But then they'd probably be the Bath House Fine Arts Center...

There was a time when almost every creative Hispanic artist in Dallas would show at this annual exhibit, and we'd find lots of intriguing new ideas and Halloweenish concepts — with lots of culture, to boot. But those days are gone. I'm not sure where they went, but this — except for a spare few piees of actual visual art — is a culture show, lots of visuals, paintings, three- dimensional objects, etc. But darned little art.

One really good piece is called Spirit. it's white guaze on a thin metal grid structure of a long-armed humanoid. A real knuckle-dragger. See-through, almost shimmering, a little spooky and a lot emphemeral. A ghost. Well crafted and finely creative art. But he stands alone in this showing.

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The inaugural exhibition at
the U of Dallas' new art buildings

October 2000


Plunge, an exhibition featuring new works by thirty regional artists, celebrates the opening of two new buildings — Art History and Sculpture — in the Haggery Arts Village of the University of Dallas, was a fine exhibition in one of two rather plain but apparently very well organized new art buildings at my alma mater, the University of Dallas ( in Irving ) very near what has since becoome Las Colinas, Texas.

Absolutely my favorite piece in the show is a light- soaking black flocked herd of horses, patterned after those famous steeds stomping through the fountains at a nearby commercial building famed for its fountains. Except these are velvet- like, much smaller and with wonderful shadows.


Celia Eberle - Like the Night
toy horses, flocking, acrylic paste, gesso and wood.
Collection Mucahy Modern Gallery

Despite its outter architectural simplicity, UD's new art buildings have great vistas of the surrounding woods — always a refuge for art students there, wonderful open spaces, angles and walkways

The University of Dallas is at 1845 East Northgate Drive in Irving, 10-6 Monday - Friday, noon-6 Saturday and Sunday, 972 721-5087

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Philip Van Keuren's Night Cometh
at The MAC

October 2000


Heron
- 1997, from his Night Cometh series, Iris print, 35 x 47

Night Cometh in the New Works Space at The MAC

Philip Van Keuren's work has changed significantly since the last time I saw it quite a few years ago. His large, exquisitely textured black and white photographs about shape, composition and tone in the smallish, New Work gallery at The MAC drew a fine crowd of students ( he teaches at SMU ), friends and art appreciators. At the opening October 14, that little gallery was crowded and noisy with conversation and banter, while the big galleries nearby, where Van Keuren's work would have really shined, were almost empty and quiet, except for the fiery explosions on one of the TVs in the far space..

After being packed nearly to the gills with work by Dallas art star Dan Rizzie till last week, the spare few scattered bits of various media by Ruben Ortiz Torres, Pedro Alvarez and Eduardo Abaroa seemed lost in the large galleries.

Undoubtedly, the most fascinating story I heard all night was that Dan Rizzie's earliest work were drawings of Philip Van Keuren's exquisite, small geometric pieces....

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DDouble VVision at The Boyd Gallery

Autumn 2000

Kathleen Kinkopf - Double Billed

 

Kathleen Kinkopf ls this show "a toungue-in-cheek visual odyssey of the double meanings that exist in a more than ordinary universe." Which pretty well sums the gallery full of double impressions, often with double-meanings. Grand to find a little gallery with a big sense of humor.

I love the homey, laid back feeling at the Boyd Gallery, which is organized by art reps to show commercial artists' fine arts work. Especially pleasant is the very informal, upstairs living room space, with all its posters and haphazard art in a cozy, comfy setting. I've always been partial to fine art attempts — often successful — of commercial graphic artists, and the work here thrills me. 

Kinkopf's work can be seen at the Boyd Gallery, 2936 Elm, 2-8, Thurs-Sat, 214 747-1917  

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James Drake at The MAC

July, 2000

El Paso resident and Whitney Biennial selectee James Drake is a superb sculptor, but he doesn't do that anymore. His photographs in Three installations by James Drake at The McKinney Ave. Contemporary are stylish and densely colored but few, spare and essentially vapid — without much of the multi-dimensional communications most photographers pack their pictures with.

I missed the artist's talk, thus missing the bulk of the meaning in these pictures. The ongoing videos are interesting as semaphore, but what's apparent on the MAC's walls is seriously lacking.

The MAC is at 3120 McKinney Ave, 11 - 10 Wednesdays - Saturdays. 1 - 5 Sundays, 214 953-1212 

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Roger Winter

September 2000

Coney Island (detail), 2000, oil on linen, 36x120

A lot of painters render land- and city-scapes, but few do them with such elegance and style. Texurally, paint by numbers, yet with a muted, quiet joy, these paintiings evoke a serenity and peace belied by their urban subjects.

I was once photographed moo-ing in the midst of some of Winter's wide, cinema-scopish cow paintings. I was in great company, and I treasure that picture as much for the contact and context with Roger Winter's art as for the notoriety of being published on the same page as Tom Landry and his then boss playing poker.

Roger Winter's work can be seen in Dallas at Edith Baker Gallery, 2404 Cedar Springs at Maple, 10-5:30 Tues-Fri, 11-5 Saturdays, 214 855-5101

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James Michael Starr

September 2000

Another Voice
assemblage and collage

I consider James Michael Starr a friend ( whom I met at Anita Horton's monthly Art Movie Night, now at DVAC ). And while I usually get the willies around religious art, I recognize James' recent work as truly inspired. It is exquisite, handsomly composed, economically three-dimensional and genuinely spiritual in elegantly aged, muted tones.

His work can be seen in Dallas at Stone By Stone Gallery, 3023 Routh St, 10-5 Tuesdays-Saturdays; 10-7 Thursdays, 214 720-9068

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Bunkhouse Buddies

June 2000

Danny Stover
painted, altered trophies

Part whimsy, part personal invention, Danny Stover's small-scale altered trophies are fanciful and fun. I'd wanted to interview Mr Stover, but he did not wish to be seen or heard.

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IR-6 + Digno in the Bath House

June 2000

The infrared film used in IR-6 ( The Sixth Annual Richland College Infrared Photography Exhibition ) offers a different sort of texture and light rendering than traditional, panchromatic silver halide film, but this show is mostly very traditional ( conservative ) photographic subjects, compositions and techniques with a bare few exceptional images.

I was especially fond of an abstracted, real place rendered by Molly Feighner. I liked the feel and space and texture, but I could not tell what or where it was. A large, brown toned photograph by Richland instructor Wayne Loucas — of an old man with a walker slowly progressing down a street in Las Vegas, New Mexico — is also memorable, but then LV,NM is one of my favorite cities anywhere.

But what stays in my mind's eye are the myriad images in the adjacent, Digno show in the hallway. Although the quality varies more in these, often striking, yet personal, environmental portraits of real people, the dignity of the individuals portrayed is consistent and palpable. My favorite is Carl Sidle's gritty, straight-on portrait of a little Black girl in a soft white dress, intelligently and sensitively contrasted with a grainy, textured background of what is probably a gas station or garage.

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Michael Cross at Michael Cross

June 2000

Michael Cross

If I had my own gallery, I'd show my own work, too. My gallery buddy thought the body of work was flat, facile and dull. I liked the colors, shapes and action. I especially like this postcard. Though the original is taller than I am, this size works just fine.

Michael Cross Gallery & Studio is at 2439 Swiss Avenue, Suite B, 214 887-9300

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