In a New York State of Mind (Part I)
EXHIBIT: Mutual Aid – a group exhibition at The Lemmon Gallery, Located inside the Kent Stark Fine Arts Building, 6000 Frank Avenue, North Canton, Ohio / THROUGH OCTOBER 26, 2018 / Gallery viewing hours are Monday – Thursday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m, and Friday 11 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. RECEPTION on Thursday Oct. 18, 5 – 7 p.m. / Contact: Professor Jack McWhorter, firstname.lastname@example.org / Office: 330 244-3356
I’m doing something that for me is unprecedented as a blogger and turning this post over to words from another artist. What follows is a wonderfully articulate exhibition statement from Jack McWhorter, a highly accomplished painter himself, and Professor of Painting and Coordinator of the Kent Stark Art Department. He, along with painters Patricia Spergel and Katharine Dufault, curated this exhibit. My own take on the show will be coming in the very near future. Meanwhile, Jack’s statement merits careful attention to fully appreciate the remarkably wide, deep, and spectacular scope of these works from members of the Painting Center in New York City.
By Jack McWhorter
The William J. and Pearl F. Lemmon Gallery is pleased to present Mutual Aid, a group exhibition of paintings by members of The Painting Center, NY. Eighteen artists were invited to exhibit up to three works that make reference to the exhibition theme: “mutual aid”. In organization theory, “mutual aid” is a voluntary reciprocal exchange of resources and services. For example, American Abstract Artists, Rubber City Prints and The Painting Center were all founded by artists to organize exhibitions of their individual works and to foster public appreciation and a forum for further discussion and investigation of matters of communal interest. In computing, we create hyperlinks to link web pages or hypertext documents. “Mutual aid” as a sharing, pattern-forming process is basic in animal life; think migration of birds and animals…”mutual aid” to hold small groups together.
In studio practice, reciprocally generative relationships between mediums of drawing, collage, photography, painting, and printmaking are widely acknowledged and celebrated. In this instance, mutual aid is not so much a theme as it is an acknowledgement that paintings create a relationship between two things or situations that suggest “multi-directional conversations.”
Each exhibiting artist embodies concrete ideas about mutual connections in their individual studio practice that reflect various organizing principles. For example: How does one work connect two or more things in visual problem solving? How do visual continuities between one work relate to another over time? What relationships are explored between memory, photographs, prints, collages and sketches? What is the relationship between model and artist?
Mutual Aid encompasses work across various painting mediums including oil, acrylic, flashe, encaustic, alkyd-modified oil and black tourmaline crystals. Painting subjects come from the built environment, connections to nature, the figure, observations from multiple angles to comprehend complex structures, memories, and formal processes.
The Painting Center is a non-profit organization dedicated to the exploration of painting in all its possibilities. It does not champion one school or tradition, but welcomes and encourages diverse viewpoints regardless of their market appeal. The Painting Center is a gathering place for painters and those who love painting. It is a democratic arena that fosters dialogue, experimentation, and community among artists.