Tuesday, January 18, 2022

 


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 13, 2022)  The Bolivar Art Gallery at University of Kentucky’s School of Art and Visual Studies will open its first shows of the new year beginning Jan. 14. The gallery will present the works of Katie Bell, Joe Hedges and Tomasz Winiarski. The free public exhibitions will open with each artist talking about their respective exhibits beginning noon Friday, Jan. 14. 

Katie Bell is originally from Rockford, Illinois, and studied fine art and race and gender studies at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. Bell has shown her work at a variety of venues and her work has been written about in BOMB Magazine, Whitewall, Hyperallergic, Artnet, Sculpture Magazine and Art in America. Bell was awarded a fellowship in painting by the New York Foundation for the Arts in 2015 and the Saint-Gaudens Memorial Fellowship in 2016. Bell lives and works in New York, New York.  

Bell creates paintings and sculptures based off objects and materials that she finds in salvage yards, and sometimes on Craigslist. She specifically looks for objects that transform depending on their surroundings. Her current work, “False Stage,” focuses on ideas from the Russian Constructivists.  

“Using woodworking tools as a form of mark making and construction materials as a palette, I build paintings and sculptures,” Bell said. “The compositions are in a state of freeze-frame, as if holding their breath until the viewer leaves.”  

Joe Hedges currently lives in Pullman, Washington, and is an intermedia artist whose works incorporate oil painting and new media installation. His work highlights the effects of technology on the human experience, providing juxtapositions with media objects and art history. Hedges has participated in national and international exhibits. The artist also has directed community-based public art projects in Ohio, Kentucky and Washington. 

Hedges’ exhibit, “Ctrl+A,” depicts oil paintings alongside recent media products that consume the world today to represent how the world and technology have molded together over time. His work is evidence of how artists have expressed their creativity differently throughout history, with the addition of technology. His works can be described as combinatorial and at times a puzzle, luring viewers to become interested of the ideas behind the pieces.  

Tomasz Winiarski is from Bielsko-Biala, Poland. He studied at the Faculty of Graphic Arts of the Academy of Fine Art in Krakow, where he completed a thesis in the Intaglio Studio. The artist has achieved many awards for his work and has participated in over 200 exhibitions, nationally and internationally. Additionally, Winiarski has presented his pieces at solo exhibitions.  

Winiarski has been pursuing his graphic series “Perpetuum mobile” for over 14 years. For most of his work, the artist uses metal techniques. This series incorporates over 100 prints created in classic mezzotint and dry point techniques.  

The artists’ exhibits will be on display Jan. 14-Feb. 12, at Bolivar Art Gallery, on the first floor of the UK School of Art and Visual Studies Building, located at 236 Bolivar St. The public can view the exhibits during regular gallery hours 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. 

The UK School of Art and Visual Studies, at the UK College of Fine Arts, is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design and offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fields of art studioart history and visual studiesart educationcuratorial studies and digital media design.  

Monday, November 8, 2021

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Friday, May 21, 2021

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

ARENA at Spencer Brownstone Gallery

Katie Bell
ARENA
April 14 - June 20, 2021
Opening Wednesday, April 14th

Spencer Brownstone Gallery is pleased to announce ARENA, the gallery’s first solo exhibition with New York City-based artist Katie Bell. Using the gallery as armature, Bell stages an array of found and fabricated forms that suggest an interplay of demolition and construction, stasis and deterioration. The pieces and fragments within the space are discrete objects that share common language and form, implying enigmatic groupings and rules in a dynamic game of performative compositions.

Within this abstract landscape, the larger landmarks of Bell’s I Series stand out. These pillar-like and human-scale forms are both and neither, resembling free-standing columns with the basic Doric capital. References to classical antiquity are complicated by contemporary materials such as commercial cabinet veneer and Corian countertop surfaces. Angled forms draw the eye to a precarious mix of materials layered on the wall titled Object of the Game. Muted colors, smooth surfaces, and crisp edges cue precision yet remain playful. Other forms pass through the courtyard windows, calling attention to her outdoor piece Tableau, which casts another interactive set of objects behind glass—a diorama within another.

Bell’s sculptures move between abstract geometric forms and familiar functional objects that hint at architectural structures, game pieces, and stage props. Much of the materials in ARENA were assembled by scavenging in and around New York City, based on their formal properties, shape, color, and form. Shifting references free the work from easy definition. Participants, spectators, and pieces all seem to be active, poised for movement or transformation, while the delineation between each of these elements becomes blurred.

Bell’s work builds on the ideas of artists interested in formal and spatial interplay—most notably Robert Morris’s Scatter Piece (1968-69), which was composed of a variety of materials (sheets of aluminum, rolls of felt, bent steel) that were made into a set and strewn around the designated space. Earlier, Russian artist and architect El Lissitzky’s works fully integrated abstract forms to activate the space of the gallery. His work titled Prounenraum (1923) merged painting, sculpture, and architecture, leading the viewer around the walls with abstract, vector-like forms. He described the work as the interchange station between painting and architecture.

Treading the fine line between rational and irrational choices, found and fabricated objects, precious and unrefined material, the functional and functionless, illusion and reality, Katie Bell’s work involves serious play.