If you happen to take the N, R or Q trains to the Fifth Avenue and 59th Street stop on your way to the Central Park Zoo, be sure to first participate in the underground Subway Art Safari that’s going on in the station, as you will not only encounter this colorful flock of Parrots, but also tiles mosaic murals of Penguins, Horses, Monkeys and other creatures.
Photo By Gail
French artist Edgar Degas (1834 – 1917) made sketches of this composition, Young Woman with Ibis during his second stay in Rome (1857 – 58). Originally conceived as a depiction of a pensive woman, the painting assumed a mysterious air when Degas added the imaginary Middle Eastern cityscape, the pink flowers, and the two red ibises around 1860- 62. About the same time, he also considered adding the brilliant birds to his large historical painting, Semiramis Building Babylon, which resides in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.
Photographed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
One of the reasons to visit the American Museum of Natural History is taking part in the Art Safari that you get to enjoy on your way out of the subway! Every time we arrive on the C Train stop at 81st Street and Central Park West to enjoy another urban adventure at this fantastic Museum, we find a new tile mosaic that we’ve not seen before. This pair of colorful parrots rest on the stairway handrail, exiting to the street.
El Gato Chimney is a fantastic, Milan-based surrealist whose compelling work I doubt I would have come to know and love so well if it weren’t for the Stephen Romano Gallery, which has lovingly featured El Gato’s work in each of their eclectic group shows.
Currently, the Romano Gallery is hosting De Rerum Natura (On the Nature of Things), a show dedicated entirely to this young artist’s exciting work.
The artwork of De Rerum Natura is accompanied by a high quality catalog, which includes several intriguing and extremely insightful essays, one of which is by fellow surrealist Martin Wittfooth. By way of introduction to El Gato Chimney’s enigmatic images, I offer a brief but richly descriptive passage from Martin’s essay:
El Gato Chimney’s paintings are a kind of visual alchemy: a unique witch’s brew or shaman’s potion of mysticism, therianthropy (the mythological ability of human beings to metamorphose into animals by means of shapeshifting), mythological and religious symbolism, and visionary fractals.
These works echo the technique and compositions of the naturalist painter John James Audubon, while envisioning a psychedelic menagerie summoned on paper from the often-diabolical nether realms of Hieronymus Bosch. Crowned hydras, chimeras, masked birds and crucified crows inhabit a barren world, wherein sacred hearts, disembodied eyes, mysticist dice, skeleton keys and beehives float above or lie upon the landscape.
El Gato Chimney’s imagination implores us to contemplate our collective symbolical archive, while simultaneously offering alternative allegories and personal readings of these devices.
Here are more pictures from the show!
El Gato Chimney’s De Rerum Natura will be on Exhibit Through April 30th, 2015 at Stephen Romano Gallery, Located at 111 Front Street in Dumbo, Brooklyn. Please note that this will be the final snow at this location before Stephen Romano moves to its new, storefront Gallery space at 145 Plymouth Street in Brooklyn!
Do you enjoy the work of artist Nick Cave? I sure do. I especially like his very fun Sound Suits, but I also enjoy that he can change it up while maintaining his very distinctive design aesthetic. Nick Cave!
On view now at Jack Shainmans’s West 24th Street space is Cave’s body of work entitled Rescue. The series includes sculptures that incorporate found ceramic dogs sitting on furniture within elaborate grottos or dreamlike dens.
Dogs have historically been associated with loyalty, class, breed, commitment, and protection. More recently, the term “dawg” has played a role in hip-hop culture as a moniker for brotherhood, respect, and power.
In the Rescues, Cave focuses each piece on a single canine that has quite literally been rescued from destruction, very much like an adopted pet. These dogs become the benevolent guardians of their self-contained worlds, focusing the spotlight on the forgotten and discarded.
A Doberman lounges on a gold sofa while a small dog fiercely guards a wishbone on a shoeshine table.
The armatures that envelop these animals correspond with large-scale wall based bas reliefs dripping with crystals, beads, small ceramic birds and metal flowers.
The vast amount of detail in these works is astounding. You could spend hours in discovery, examining each piece. Very cool!
Rescue by Nick Cave will be on Exhibit through October 11th, 2014 at the Jack Shainman Gallery, Located at 524 West 24th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.
This must be some kind of mating ritual, I suppose, but with the backing music it just made me chuckle. So cute!
Thanks to Buzz60 For The Tip!