Artist Q&A with Patricia Abramovich

“Psifas 2”, oil on canvas, 31 x 39 in | 80 x 100 cm, 2009

Why did you become an artist?

I always have been creative. I loved to draw from just an early age, learned to play piano and guitar, and wrote poetry as a teenager.  I began to paint again at the age of 40, and it was a became a sort of obsession where I painted every free minute I had. In 2009 I published some of my paintings on several art sites, and was invited to show at the Biennale in Florence soon after. I think that is the exact time I would say I became an artist.

How is your work different than everything out there?

“Patricia Abramovich presents colorful abstract paintings, with almost sculptural strokes of frenetic color forming the basis of the painting’s composition. The oil on canvas works are performed in spectacular colors that show great boldness, expressing the personal language developed by the artist over the years, a coloristic language with an identifying character and presence. In this completely abstract and well-constructed language, the paintings are made of strokes of color, placed in an intensive process using only a spatula on the canvas.”

Daniella Talmor

I always search for different ways and new techniques, and always painting from my imagination. Sometimes I look at inspiring landscapes, whereas other times I just put color on the canvas or paper giving my hands total freedom. It almost feels as the painting appears by itself. The moment I look at the blank surface brings an exciting feeling, as my next creation is on its way. I need to be totally in the mood with nothing around me, only my painter knife or water moving the colors on the paper. It is only me and … Click here to read more

Artist Q&A with Melanie Comber

“Way Out 56”, oil and pigment on paper, 12 x 16 in | 31 x 41 cm, 2020

Why did you become an artist?

Making things and painting became a way for me to express myself from a very young age. I hated school and found it really difficult to follow the group. In art class, I discovered that I could express myself through a process of ‘making’.  I could have a world that I created; a space that was solely mine to dictate. From there I just knew that this was the way that I wanted to face the world, and focused my education towards art school. It was a search for my own voice, my own language, and a way to project myself in the world that stood outside everyone else.

Melanie Comber, self portrait

How is your work different than everything else out there?

I make paintings using traditional materials, but I don’t apply those materials in a traditional way. I use oil paint and loose pigments to create large three dimensional surfaces which have a very illusory appearance. They play between painting, sculpture, and photography. On first glance the viewer is never quite sure what exactly they are looking at.  The most common question that I get asked about my work is, “how is it made?” I want the viewer to move around the work and I have been known to make work that changes colour from different directions. I want the viewer to work at having an experience with my painting, and want it to surprise you.

What’s different about your current body of work?

I spent the COVID-19 lockdown unable to access my studio space so I had to find a way to adapt my process.  I began painting … Click here to read more

Hadi Tabatabai’s Transitional Objects

Hadi Tabatabai is an abstract artist who emigrated from Iran in 1977 at only 13 years old. He finished his BS in Industrial Technology in 1985, and his BFA in painting at the San Francisco Art Institute in 1995.

When one first enters Peter Blake Gallery in Laguna Beach and happens upon Tabatabai’s current solo show “Black White Sometimes Blue,”, a few things happen. The first is that they notice that the works are beautifully minimal and seductive in nature, comprised of just black, white, and sporadically blue.  Numerous comparisons can be made with a keen sense of the balance between light and space. The artist has clearly studied the groundwork laid out by James Turrell and Sol Lewitt, and the compositions of Lee Lozano, Ellsworth Kelly, and Donad Judd.  The key addition he is making is by adding sensibility of the monochrome in line with Charles Hinman and Norio Imai.

Installation view of Hadi Tabatabai “Black White Sometimes Blue”. Courtesy of Peter Blake Gallery.

The second understanding is that though immediately intriguing, it is going to take some time to sit and contemplate these meditative works.  The viewer becomes acutely aware of how the artist’s sensibility deeply interacts with the gallery’s architecture and physical space.  In these times, most dealers will back the walls and try to sell as much product as possible, but Blake and his team understand that art is more than just something to sell, it’s a statement from an artist with a very specific intent, and the level of detail in the installation and lighting goes miles further than other galleries.    

Elegant and nuanced surfaces are created with a balance of acrylic paint combined with thread.  The thread acts as a three-dimensional break, whereas the painted surfaces are smooth and flat.  There … Click here to read more

Bill Scott’s Colorful Fantasies

For his eighth solo show with Hollis Taggart, Bill Scott presents “A Prolonged Moment”, an exhibition featuring new oil on canvas paintings and watercolors on paper. The show is viewable online and by appointment at the gallery’s 26th Street location from June 15 through July 24, 2020.

Installation view of Bill Scott: A Prolonged Moment. Courtesy of Hollis Taggart

The included works are full of rich color and a significant amount of energy and movement.  Although the gallery is currently open by appointment only at the moment of publication, Scott’s rich abstractions are likely to appeal to collectors exploring online, with their bright colors, energy, and immediately recognized gestures–all of which are characteristic of Scott’s previous work.  

All of the work in the show starts with large swashes of bold colors; reds, blues, and yellows become dominant surfaces for Scott’s expressive brushwork. Upon finishing the groundwork of color, the artist begins digging into his past and also his present surroundings.  References to natural forms, shapes, traditional landscapes, plants, and the local Philadelphia skyline are all visible in his new works.

Compared to his older pieces, there is a bit more geometry in these paintings, and there is a more illustrative influence, possibly from the return to using a finer watercolor brush for the smaller works on paper.   With the canvases, Scott is working with numerous layers of thin and transparent paint, with slow and methodical applications, which is in strong contrast to many abstract painters of his generation who were working quickly and thickly, which much less deliberate intent.

In the catalog that accompanies the exhibition, the artist states that the small watercolors are not studies for paintings, and it would appear that they are spiritually connected, but have a very separate intent. These small-scale works, measuring approximately 12 x 16 … Click here to read more

John Ruby’s Textured Appropriation of the Late Greats

In his first virtual solo exhibition taking place at Robert Berry Gallery, Chicago-based artist John Ruby has appropriated imagery of the world’s most iconic musicians, and puts a renewed importance on the rock-and-roll side of Pop Art. 

For his new body of work, Ruby is creating digital recontextualizations of famous images of John Lennon, Bob Marley, Amy Winehouse, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, David Bowie, and other late greats.  Ruby’s inspiration behind the rock and roll motif seems to be one from the vantage point of an artist who clearly loves music.  Many artists listen to classical music when creating, but this artist clearly loves the electric guitar and all the culture surrounding it.   Every music fan has their idols, and Ruby certainly was inspired by what he grew up with in the 70s and 80s. 

Image courtesy of Robert Berry Gallery

The show is the first online only show at Robert Berry Gallery, which seems to be the new trend in the art world given the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, and virtual exhibitions are quite a step forward over the already stale “viewing room” that have been making their way into the online strategies of other dealers.  Not having physical limitations allows Ruby to exhibit these fantastic new paintings during a time when collectors are craving new works to fill up all their free time between Zoom calls and emails.  

Virtual only might be a concern for some, but what is very apparent from the detailed images and video clips uploaded onto the gallery site, is the deep textured surfaces which look to be colored string woven across the surface of the canvas. One can clearly see that there is a handmade painted acrylic impasto as the structural foundation of … Click here to read more