Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fowel Play on Arts and Absinthe...

sunday update: we definitely like the spice

Art and

This past Friday night, I had the chance to attend one of Like the Spice Gallery’s monthly dinner parties, which honor its current exhibiting artist along with related special guests. If you’re the sort who ever feels a disconnect in traditional gallery spaces, this bandwagon is one to hop on. Hearing artist Dean Goelz explain a bit of his inspiration and process for the show Migrations was, simply put, cool. In person, Dean is endearing and earnest, which comes through in his work, a series of sculpted clay human heads on top of geese-like bodies in various poses. What may sound silly on paper comes across in person as an apt exploration of awkward vs. humorous in human relationships - in a sense, turning the term “anthropomorphism” on its head.
artist Dean Goelz in front of his work for "Migrations"

Artist Dean Goelz in front of his work for "Migrations"

Out of all the “cosmic underdogs and nerds,” however, the probable award for piece we’d-most-like-to-take-home belongs to a work on paper, a piece Goelz created after the death of three grandparents within a two year span. A graphite rendering of a face peeks out from a mass of white acrylic dots on white paper, forming a shadowy cloud over the slightest hint of a human form. The white-on-white raised dots added a sculptural element to a piece that might have otherwise seemed out of place in a room full of 3-D fowl with human heads.

Two additional artists were on hand to supplement the night’s theme, “Foul Play.” Andrew Garn showed a clip from his film “The Last Pigeon,” and JL Aronson (whose film Up on the Roof is screening Sept 22 at the Village East Cinemas) spoke about how his film is attuned to the human interest side of the greater pigeon story, i.e. gentrification in New York and how that affects old-school birding folk. As for Garn, check out his insanely detailed pigeon portraits at A.M. Richard Fine Art in Williamsburg - a cross between National Geographic and f/2.8.

See here for more details on Dean’s show at Like the Spice Gallery. And save the date for October 17, the date of the next gallery dinner party with artist Nicole Stagg.

PS. Dinner was divine!

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