Category: Nature

Willie Cole

The Future of Art: Willie Cole, a contemporary artist creating unique work and positive change.

Willie Cole has been ­­­making innovative work with unique iconography for over half a century, but talking to him, he sounds like a friendly, smart colleague or neighbor next store. Perhaps that’s why his work is so accessible and inspirational.

The artist, who lives in Mine Hill, NJ, has been the subject of shows at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (1998), Bronx Museum of the Arts (2001), and Miami Art Museum (2001). These institutions, some of the biggest in the world, along with private collectors from New York to Los Angeles, see something provocative in his work.

When Art Review City caught up with him, the artist invited us to a visit his home studio where he was finishing the works for the collective exhibition “There’s There There,” curated by renowned American artist Rashid Johnson at blue-chip gallery Hauser and Wirth’s Southampton location. This show invites visitors to reflect upon the pleasures and complex histories of the shapes, movements, and objects that permeate the everyday, and Cole’s ironing board works are clearly the stars of the show. 

Installation view, ‘There’s There There’, Hauser & Wirth Southampton, 2021. © Hauser & Wirth. Courtesy Hauser & Wirth. Photo: Thomas Barratt.

The artist has spent a lifetime working to look at thing differently than most artists. He is most concerned with recycling, green energy, and living a healthy and spiritual life to live at one with Mother Earth. He spent many of his early days in a pew at Sunday School, and later studied Buddhism in high school and college, but today he says he is a “no-frills nature worshipper” which explains a lot about him as a man and as an artist. “Nature, no matter what you call it, is powerful, and it deserves to be admired … Click here to read more

Gregory Thielker

Artist Q&A with Gregory Thielker

Movement, territory, and memory shape the work of artist Gregory Thielker. He uses drawing and painting, as well as sound and installation, to unpack perceptions and narratives of specific places. Hyperrealistic representation serves as a tool for a slow, meticulous transcription of the physical sites, as well as documentation of the artist’s contact with each place. His images reveal a critical glance, give pause for contemplation, and allow memory to affect our impressions. He has exhibited throughout the United States and abroad. Gregory currently lives in Switzerland.

“Remainder”, oil on linen, 34 x 50 in | 86 x 127cm, 2019

Who is your favorite artist of all time?

If I have to pick one who has continued to inspire me it would be Gerhard Richter.

How did you become a professional artist?

I have always loved art, but for most of my days in school, I tried hard to do other things. Eventually, the feeling that I needed to be an artist won out. And now I can’t imagine not making art.

What are the influences and inspirations in your work?

I am inspired and challenged by what I see around me. I think this started when I began to paint en plein air, and after I pulled out a canvas, that moment of paralysis when I had to decide how and why I was painting what I saw. For better or worse, I have moved around a lot too; living in New York and different cities in the US, to India, Bulgaria, and now Switzerland. It’s not easy to arrive in a new place, but I think that painting and drawing give me the means to understand how I see things. There is a saying I believe about India: that when you first arrive, you feel like you can … Click here to read more

Ned Martin “Spirits Through Time”

The Duality of Ned Martin

Image courtesy of Robert Berry Gallery

Ned Martin created a dual style presentation that features both sides of his personality in “Spirits Through Time,” his second solo exhibition with Robert Berry Gallery, and challenges the viewer to contemplate the notion of time, the balance of humanity, and to reflect on the state of the world in these 15 new works mostly painted in the past few months during his unexpected quarantine in South America. 

There are two parts to the show: the abstracted landscapes that Martin has been working on over the last few years, and the new portrait paintings combining elements of abstraction and figuration. To anyone who has been following the artist over the last four decades, you’ll know that he was classically trained at the Schuler School of Fine Art, and to this day still mixes his own colors and always builds his own painting surfaces to ensure that he has full control over every element that goes into his work. 

For the last few years, he has used reclaimed aluminum printing plates on which to create his landscape works. The metal plates were originally used to print tabloid stories and advertising, which tend to be disposed after a few uses since there are remnants of images and text. The artists states that, “All of that imagery, paired with the landscape work, creates a sense of beauty mixed with commercial messages.” It’s the juxtaposition of the natural beauty of the landscape imagery that is combined with consumerism which is the driving force behind a lot of Americans that creates such a powerful dynamic. Martin also discusses his background of living in rural Pennsylvania on a farm, and his recent passion for camping, which has changed how he relates to nature compared to … Click here to read more