Front Room Gallery celebrates 15 years

Front Room Gallery celebrates 15 years

FR:15— Front Room 15 Anniversary October 10th – November 2nd Opening: Friday October 10, 7-9 Front Room Gallery 147 Roebling Street, Brooklyn NY Featuring: Amanda Alic, Sasha Bezzubov, Thomas Broadbent, Gregory Curry, Ethan Crenson, Lisa Dilillo, Mark Esper, Peter Fox, Amy Hill, Sascha Mallon, Stephen Mallon, Mark Masyga, Sean Hemmerle,...
Celebrating artists’ love in tandem with my recent nuptials

Celebrating artists’ love in tandem with my recent nuptials

FRONT ROOM GALLERY 147 ROEBLING STREET, BROOKLYN, NY FRONTROOM.ORG SUMMER LOVE July 2 – August 24, 2014 Opening reception: Wednesday, July 2, 6:00–9:00pm Closing brunch: Sunday, August 24, 3:00–6:00pm ARTISTS: Amanda Alic + Ethan Crenson Rachel Feinstein + John Currin Jolynn Krystosek + Halsey Hathaway Katherine Newbegin + Todd Knopke...
panel talk at Open Engagement conference - Queens Museum, Queens, NY

panel talk at Open Engagement conference – Queens Museum, Queens, NY

Presentation at the Queens Museum as part of the Open Engagement conference with Anna Lise Jensen, Alyssa Casey, Monica Carrier, and Jo Q. Nelson, of Anna Lise Jensen’s Fjellerup i Bund & Grund.  Photos: Mitsu Hadeishi. (from left to right, facing front: Julia Whitney Barnes, Monica Carrier, Alyssa Casey, Anna Lise Jensen, and Jo Q. Nelson)
The Last Brucennial

The Last Brucennial

One of my paintings is featured alongside over 650 artists in The Last Brucennial on view from March 7 –April 4, 2014 at 837 Washington Street, NYC.  The show is presented by Vito Schnabel and The Bruce High Quality Foundation. For more information visit: http://brucennial.com/. There has been lots of press...
Public art projects in Fjellerup, Denmark completed

Public art projects in Fjellerup, Denmark completed

I read that Denmark was the world’s happiest country and after five weeks there this summer, I see why! While squeezing in daily bike rides through the forest and along the ocean, I worked on three projects. With the help of locals citizens, I transfomed the facade and windows of...
Mosaic commission at Brooklyn School of Inquiry

Mosaic commission at Brooklyn School of Inquiry

I just completed work on a permanent mosaic commission “Coloridas Historias de México” at the Brooklyn School of Inquiry, 50 Avenue P, Brooklyn, NY. I worked with the art teacher Nanna Tannier, along with 75 gifted and talented third graders. The theme of the mosaic is ancient to contemporary Mexico, which the...
In Her Nature, Curated by Krista Saunders at Fountain, March 8-10

In Her Nature, Curated by Krista Saunders at Fountain, March 8-10

tART Collective is a contemporary feminist artist collective in NYC The following 8 artists of the 35 current members represent tART at this year’s Fountain NY The full collective will be shown in catalogs, zines & flat files    IN HER NATURE  curated by Krista Saunders Anna Lise Jensen, Elsie...
tART Collective Studio Visit blog by Susan Ross

tART Collective Studio Visit blog by Susan Ross

Entering Julia Whitney Barnes’ studio in Red Hook, Brooklyn, I encountered a world of interconnections, a feast for the eyes. Two of the walls are covered with rich source material, including studies, photos and reproductions of images of animals, plants, architecture, a favorite painting: Pontormo’s Visitation and a view from her studio window...
"Frenzy Into Folly" exhibition opens September 20, 7–9pm

“Frenzy Into Folly” exhibition opens September 20, 7–9pm

click here to my video interview about the exhibition: http://youtu.be/7T01eKGPGBM “Frenzy Into Folly” Exhibit at Church of St. Paul the Apostle Fren*zy (fr?n*z?) n., 1. A state of violent mental agitation or wild excitement. 2. Temporary madness or delirium. 3. A mania; a craze. Fol*ly (f?l*?) n., 1. A lack of good...
Article on "Refracted Nature" published in East Villager News

Article on “Refracted Nature” published in East Villager News

Sirovich’s Center offers window(s) into mosaic Thursday, August 16th, 2012 Artist Julia Whitney Barnes in front of one of the mosaics Sirovich Center seniors created in sealed-over balcony windows. Photo by Bonnie Rosenstock BY BONNIE ROSENSTOCK  |  When visual artist Julia Whitney Barnes began her six-month SPARC (Seniors Partnering with Artists...
"Refracted Nature" permanent mosaic unveiled

“Refracted Nature” permanent mosaic unveiled

“Refracted Nature” installation will be on permanent display in the main ballroom/auditorium at the Sirovich Senior Center. Sirovich is part of the Educational Alliance is a non-profit organization was founded in in 1889 to help Jewish immigrants get settled in the U.S., and currently serves a broad and diverse group...
"These Trees: Melissa Cowper-Smith & Julia Whitney Barnes"

“These Trees: Melissa Cowper-Smith & Julia Whitney Barnes”

I am delighted to announce a two-person show with Melissa Cowper-Smith opening Saturday, June 2 from 6–8pm at Sweet Lorraine Gallery in Red Hook. There will also be a closing reception on Friday, June 29 from 7–9pm. The gallery is open by appointment throughout the month. Melissa is a founding...
"Collectivity: Art-Making in a Collective" at Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning

“Collectivity: Art-Making in a Collective” at Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning

I created a new installation “Inner Workings,” comprised of source material along with paintings, drawings, mixed-media works and sculptures from 2004–2012 for this exhibition at Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning Jamaica, New York, March 28, 2012 — Collectivity: Art-making in a Collective will open on April 4, 2012 at...
Front page interview published in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle & Brooklyn Eagle

Front page interview published in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle & Brooklyn Eagle

Cover story interview with Mike Weiss published in the weekly edition on February 23 & daily paper February 24, 2012. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/brooklyn-artist-julia-whitney-barnes-paintings-ceramics-murals 
The L Magazine review of "In-Habitat"

The L Magazine review of “In-Habitat”

“The works by Julia Whitney Barnes indicate a desire for a more harmonious relationship with nature. Barnes combines organic imagery—think abstracted clouds and roots —with renderings of man-made materials. In a mixed-media piece, Barnes affixes an image of a tree house over a dusky forest scene. The house melts easily into the...
"In-Habitat" at Front Room Gallery

“In-Habitat” at Front Room Gallery

IN-HABITAT  Julia Whitney Barnes Gregory Curry Lisa DiLillo Kim Holleman January 20-February 26 (show extended) Opening Reception Friday January 20th, 7-9pm Hours Fri-Sun 1-6 and by appt. Front Room Gallery is proud to present, “In-Habitat” an exhibition of new works by: Julia Whitney Barnes, Gregory Curry, Lisa DiLillo, and Kim...
SPARC

SPARC

I will be participating in Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide (SPARC) at Sirovitch Senior Center in the East Village through a grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC) and the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), from January through July 2012. Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide (SPARC) is a community arts engagement program that places artists-in-residence...
tART Collective Year 8: Arts@Renaissance

tART Collective Year 8: Arts@Renaissance

Front page article by Michael Cesarczyk: “The Renaissance Women of tART” tART Collective Year 8, Arts@Renaissance September 9 – October 14, 2011 opening reception: Friday, September 9, 7-9pm ***closing reception: Friday, October 14, 7-9pm 2 Kingsland Avenue (@ Maspeth Avenue) Garden Level Brooklyn, NY 11211 (L train to Graham Ave)
Porcelain edition for Fuse Works

Porcelain edition for Fuse Works

  I am creating a new edition of vessels for Fuse Works.  I created two plaster molds and cast nine pieces each out of english porcelain slip. The pieces were handshaped after being removed form the molds and embossed with JWB on the bottoms.  The first firing was to cone...
New York City Department of Transportation commission

New York City Department of Transportation commission

New comission from by the New York City Department of Transportation Urban Art Program comprised of a 2,000 foot long mural starting at 155th Street & Harlem River Drive in Manhattan completed on May 1, 2011. The mural was painted on 3 foot tall cement barriers with the assistance from hundreds of...
Interview on BRIC ARTS TV

Interview on BRIC ARTS TV

INTERVIEW ON BRIC ARTS TV

Front Room Gallery celebrates 15 years

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FR:15—
Front Room 15 Anniversary
October 10th – November 2nd
Opening: Friday October 10, 7-9
Front Room Gallery
147 Roebling Street, Brooklyn NY

Featuring:
Amanda Alic, Sasha Bezzubov, Thomas Broadbent, Gregory Curry, Ethan Crenson, Lisa Dilillo, Mark Esper, Peter Fox, Amy Hill, Sascha Mallon, Stephen Mallon, Mark Masyga, Sean Hemmerle, Kim Holleman, David Kramer, Jesse Lambert, Allan Packer, Walker Pickering, Emily Roz, Sante Scardillo, Philip Simmons, Mark Stilwell, Jeremy Slater, Patricia Smith, Rodger Stephens, Miho Suzuki, Joanne Ungar, Julia Whitney Barnes, Edie Winograde, and Monika Wuhrer.

The Front Room Gallery is proud to announce FR:15, Front Room’s Fifteenth Anniversary exhibition. We are thrilled to say that we have had over 117 exhibitions since we opened in Williamsburg at 147 Roebling Street on October 9th, 1999. This exhibition will feature some of our stalwarts that have been with us from the beginning such as Amanda Alic, Ethan Crenson, Sean Hemmerle, and Edie Winograde, as well as our current stable of artists who have shaped Front Room throughout the years and artists that have shown at Front Room in the past 15 years whose works we have always admired.

We have seen good and bad changes in Williamsburg in the last 6.66% of a century, and we are still happy to be here on Roebling Street right in the middle of the craziness. In 1999 none of us had cell phones, most artists sent their submissions in the form of slides, Chelsea was just getting started, LES and Bushwick didn’t exist as art scenes and the idea of art fairs was just getting started. Since then Front Room and it’s talented roster of artists has been involved in many art fairs and exchanges with museums and galleries throughout the world, and has received critical acclaim from renowned publications in print to far-flung blogs. We thank everyone for their continued support and look forward to a grand future.

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Celebrating artists’ love in tandem with my recent nuptials

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FRONT ROOM GALLERY
147 ROEBLING STREET, BROOKLYN, NY
FRONTROOM.ORG

SUMMER LOVE

July 2 – August 24, 2014

Opening reception: Wednesday, July 2, 6:00–9:00pm

Closing brunch: Sunday, August 24, 3:00–6:00pm

ARTISTS:
Amanda Alic + Ethan Crenson
Rachel Feinstein + John Currin
Jolynn Krystosek + Halsey Hathaway
Katherine Newbegin + Todd Knopke
Alexandra Posen + Nils Folke Anderson
Sascha (Prinz zu Schaumburg-Lippe) Mallon + Stephen Mallon
Jessica Sucher + Sasha Bezzubov
Kathleen Vance + Daniel Aycock
Cibele Vieira + Peter Fox
Ursula Weissmüller + Robert Ortega
Julia Whitney Barnes + Sean Hemmerle

Front Room gallery is proud to present: “Summer Love” a group show curated by Julia Whitney Barnes celebrating artists’ love in tandem with her recent nuptials with Sean Hemmerle.  As part of their wedding celebration, artist Julia Whitney Barnes selected eleven married artist couples, each of whom have a personal connection to the newlyweds. The concept for the show developed while Julia was going over their wedding invite list and noticed how many artist couples were included.  Several of the artists work collaboratively, and without question, each couple is influenced by each other’s work. About half the artists are Front Room regulars and for the other half, this will mark their first show with the gallery.

Whitney Barnes structured the selection of artworks by directing each spouse to choose which piece would represent their partner in the exhibition, or the artists selected collaborative work. This process mimics the couples selecting each other to marry, with the artworks exhibited in pairs.

ABOUT THE WORK:

Amanda Alic and Ethan Crenson collaborated on the video “People in Trees.” Very much as the title implies, single figures appear high in a tree in a snowy, quiet, otherwise depopulated landscape. It is ambiguous and meditative. With David Ramirez, John Keefe, Edie Winograde and Matthew Crenson.

World-renowned artist couple, Rachel Feinstein and John Currin collaborated on a graphite drawing of two topless women wearing glasses, based on vintage porn images. The more buxom figure is looking at nude photographs on the floor and the skinnier figure is grasping open a book on top of a stack of other books.  In making these works, Rachel draws the playful contours and John elaborates with refined shading. This is the first public exhibition of one of Currin and Feinsteins’s collaborative drawings.

Jolynn Krystosek‘s wall mounted gray felt sculpture creates a space of both shallow and infinite depth. The felt works inspire a variety of aesthetic references including hoods, bonnets, or habits and are suggestive of feminine anatomy. Halsey Hathaway’s tall acrylic on dyed canvas painting is imbued with translucent overlapping fields of color. The accumulated forms build up to a space that can be seen both as figure and as void, intentionally allowing the work to change with each viewer’s own subjectivity.

Katherine Newbegin‘s Chromogenic print of a Mosque in Mumbai is from her solo travels in India during 2010 and 2011. Though Todd initially aimed to select one of Katherine’s works from their frequent mutual travels, his love of this charged yet tranquil space won out. Todd Knopkes wall mounted fabric work combines the traditions of American quilting and European tapestry making, mixed with contemporary ideas of collage, painting, and sculpture. The work uses repurposed fabric including his friends and family’s clothes, sheets and towels and is reminiscent of a sunny figure emerging from water with mountains in the background.

Alexandra Posen‘s “Soft Paintings,” call on a unique language of abstraction that engages color, transparency, shadow and ephemerality to project imaginary spaces. They are created from translucent painted silk, stretched over wooden bars. Nils Folke Anderson‘s painted Aquaresin sculpture looks like bent wood on first glance. His sensuous work hovers in the enigmatic territory between abstraction and evocation.

Sascha (Prinz zu Schaumburg-Lippe) Mallon‘s multifaceted drawing, infused with surrealist-influenced narrative, is populated with creatures that are like the unseen within the obvious: animals, half-humans, imaginary hybrid beings in a constant state of change. Stephen Mallon‘s Chromogenic print “New Grass” was shot on the Coast of Ireland on the day he proposed to Sascha in 2005. It is part of his series about vacation places out of season.

Jessica Sucher and Sasha Bezzubov’s collaborative black and white silver gelatin prints are of untended olive trees, found throughout the Palestinian Occupied Territories from their series “Facts on the Ground.” Raggedly beautiful, these trees are visible evidence of Israeli policies that have made many orchards in the West Bank inaccessible to Palestinian farmers. Ties to these trees run deep, and cutting off farmers and families from their orchards is a powerful strategy of symbolic and economic discouragement.

Kathleen Vance’s  “Rogue Stream” is a site-specific installation of a miniature meandering stream that transverses a wall, connecting intermittently, through the use of wooden trestles.  This piece explores issues of ground water rights and environmental issues relative to the source stream referenced in the installation. Daniel Aycock’s “Geisen Family Journal” uses manipulated tintype photographs to trace the lineage of a family that was documented in a found journal written in 1896.

Cibele Vieira and Peter Fox ‘s selected works are from the era that they got together in 2006. Cibele‘s photo from her “Single and Looking for…” series explores the nature of relationships and interaction. The works are an invitation to enter and explore a world of desires and expectations on how people relate to each other. Peter’s painting “Quiet Sort” was his homecoming gift to Cibele and their newborn son Sam, on their arrival home from the hospital. The painting is from a transitional moment in the evolution of his spilled paint series, shortly before he discovered the striped drip, of which he is known.

Ursula Weissmüller and Robert Ortega installation of drawings, collages and illustrated love letters from the past decade shows the couples passion for each other and the art of paper. The two also collaborated on the design of the show’s exhibition card.

Julia Whitney Barnes and Sean Hemmerle‘s work relates to their travels in Iceland last summer. Julia’s oil painting on mylar is from her “Bricks and Stones May Break” series and features cairns (manmade stacks of stones) that have since ancient times been erected as landmarks. For thousands of years they have also been built as sepulchral monuments, or used for defensive, hunting, ceremonial, astronomical and other purposes. The stacks in Julia’s painting are along the road to Þingvallavatn, where the North American and Eurasian continental plates meet. Sean’s Chromogenic print shows three pairs of Icelandic sheep in a meadow just below the Eyjafjallajökull Volcano that erupted in 2010, covering in ash all of the immediate area and spanning across a large area of northern Europe. The sheep are immersed in lush greenery and seem unaware of the volcano’s previous effects, and the volcano is hidden behind the fluffy clouds above.


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panel talk at Open Engagement conference – Queens Museum, Queens, NY

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Presentation at the Queens Museum as part of the Open Engagement conference with Anna Lise JensenAlyssa Casey, Monica Carrier, and Jo Q. Nelson, of Anna Lise Jensen’s Fjellerup i Bund & Grund

Photos: Mitsu Hadeishi. (from left to right, facing front: Julia Whitney Barnes, Monica Carrier, Alyssa Casey, Anna Lise Jensen, and Jo Q. Nelson)




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The Last Brucennial

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One of my paintings is featured alongside over 650 artists in The Last Brucennial on view from March 7 –April 4, 2014 at 837 Washington Street, NYC.  The show is presented by Vito Schnabel and The Bruce High Quality Foundation. For more information visit: http://brucennial.com/.

There has been lots of press about the show so far including:
The New York Observer by Michael H. Miller on March 7
Black Book by Bruce Wayne on March 7
Bedford + Bowery by Scott Lynch on March 7
 Art in America by Nick Irvin on March 5
Art Fag City by Whitney Kimball on March 4
The Art Newspaper on February February 19 
The New York Observer by Michael H. Miller on February 19

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Public art projects in Fjellerup, Denmark completed

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I read that Denmark was the world’s happiest country and after five weeks there this summer, I see why! While squeezing in daily bike rides through the forest and along the ocean, I worked on three projects. With the help of locals citizens, I transfomed the facade and windows of a former grocery store in the center of town, collaborated with Danish artist Asger Neiman on stoneware and raku sculptures, and executed many sketches and photographs that have become the basis for current paintings. Two vessels that Asger and I created were installed in a 12th century church in the center of town. One vase rests on a fragment of a legendary tree know to locals as “The Three Siblings.” The other vase rests on a base hewn from one of the church’s original joists. Members of the congregation will fill these vessels with seasonal flora from Fjellerup.

I traveled to the North Jutland region of Denmark when invited to participate in “Fjellerup i Bund & Grund,” which was organized by Danish/American artist Anna Lise Jensen with site-specific projects, supported by Norddjurs Kommune and made in collaboration with the townspeople and fellow artists Norbert Francis Attard, Monica Carrier, Jo Q. Nelson and Christine Sciulli.

My intervention of the former Byens Købmand (city grocery) is entitled Flora I Fjellerup. The facade was repainted to create the illusion of shadows of plants indigenous to the area.  Collected by locals and myself from gardens, forests, meadows, and the seaside, we even included some weeds growing along the side of the structure.

The wood cutouts in the windows were based on kelp from the nearby Kattegat Sea. The scale of these aquatic plants were enlarged to evoke a fish’s perspective. Norwegian Birch plywood was soffited into the window and door edges as a reference to the tradition of boarding up a building that that has been abandoned or is under construction. Transforming these materials from their utilitarian purpose, the viewer is transported to the ocean and distracted from the emptiness and bric-à-brac inside. During the day, the cutouts cast shadows onto the deep sills and concrete floor while at night, the shapes are cast outward when illuminated from within.

It showed great community and national support to have legendary Danish Parliament member Bertel Haarder speak at the opening ceremony. The installation is on view indefinitely, and plans are already in the works for next summer.

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Mosaic commission at Brooklyn School of Inquiry

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I just completed work on a permanent mosaic commission “Coloridas Historias de México” at the Brooklyn School of Inquiry, 50 Avenue P, Brooklyn, NY. I worked with the art teacher Nanna Tannier, along with 75 gifted and talented third graders. The theme of the mosaic is ancient to contemporary Mexico, which the students studied in social studies and also made individual drawings based on Mexico in art class.  I looked at and scanned the hundred-plus drawings the students made and researched the weighty topic during a trip to Mexico City this spring. Of the many artists that have taken on this theme, ones of particular interest for me are: Juan O’Gorman, Frida Khalo and Diego Rivera. This was the first project I had collaborated on with kids and found the experience a ton of fun, hard work and rewarding. The mosaic was installed on the 4th floor of the school and am happy that it will be enjoyed by countless students and staff in the years to come.

 

 

 

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In Her Nature, Curated by Krista Saunders at Fountain, March 8-10

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tART Collective is a contemporary feminist artist collective in NYC
The following 8 artists of the 35 current members represent tART at this year’s Fountain NY
The full collective will be shown in catalogs, zines & flat files 

 

IN HER NATURE  curated by Krista Saunders

Anna Lise Jensen, Elsie Kagan, Katherine Keltner, Jess Levey, Nikki Schiro, Petra Valentova, Kathleen Vance & Julia Whitney Barnes

In honor of the centennial celebration of THE Armory Fair (1913 International Exhibition of Modern Art) tART will have a booth at Fountain Art Fair, taking place at the original location: 69th Regiment Armory, on Lexington Avenue between 25th and 26th Streets. Booth A204


Fountain Art Fair 
March 8th-10th

69th Regiment Armory at 68 Lexington Avenue (25th St and Lexington Ave)
For its 8th New York edition, Fountain Art Fair will return to the 69th Regiment Armory, home of the revolutionary 1913 Armory Show, which was a public sensation and introduced the American public to European avant-garde painting and sculpture. 

New York, NY – The tART Collective is a New York City-based contemporary feminist artist initiative currently comprised of 35 members. A colorful blend of emerging female artists practicing painting, sculpture, performance and everything in between, tART members hail from diverse backgrounds but share a need for dialogue informed by studio visits and socially-engaged exchanges. For the 8th Annual Fountain Art Fair in New York, 8 of tART’s artists will represent the collective to the wider art world: Anna Lise JensenElsie KaganKatherine KeltnerJess LeveyNikki SchiroPetra ValentovaKathleen Vance and Julia Whitney Barnes. Curated by Krista Saunders, “In Her Nature” shows works informed by encounters with the natural world within and beyond the artists’ urban surroundings. Each artist is individually investigating how she shapes or is shaped by her environment. Collectively, the exhibition explores the versatility of today’s emerging feminist artists and challenges generalizations by presenting a broad range of works. The entire tART Collective will be on view in the form of catalogs, zines and publications.

Fountain Art Fair
69th Regiment Armory (25th Street & Lexington Ave.) New York, NY
Friday, March 8 12-5 PM VIP/Press Preview; 5-7 Open to public; 7PM-Midnight Opening Reception
Saturday March 9 12-7PM Open to the Public, 7-Midnight Saturday Night Event, Music Lineup TBA
Sunday, March 10 12-5PM Open to the Public, Music Lineup TBA

tART Collective is a contemporary feminist artist collective in New York City. Members maintain their individual art practices and are committed to maintaining a close community through post-graduate studio visits, collaborations and offering support through the sharing of ideas, information and resources. The collective produces ‘zines, workshops and discussions and engages communities outside the collective – often in conjunction with exhibitions.   

tART
exhibition concurrently on view:
“Collectively Assembled” at Arts@Renaissance
2 Kingsland Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
Thursdays and Saturdays 1-6p, through March 16th

 

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tART Collective Studio Visit blog by Susan Ross

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Entering Julia Whitney Barnes’ studio in Red Hook, Brooklyn, I encountered a world of interconnections, a feast for the eyes. Two of the walls are covered with rich source material, including studies, photos and reproductions of images of animals, plants, architecture, a favorite painting: Pontormo’s Visitation and a view from her studio window in Italy.  Surrounding herself with this imagery, Julia explores relationships between art, science and mythology, and natural and human-made worlds. Integrating her ideas, she flexibly moves among oil painting, printmaking, ceramics, mural painting, mosaic work and installation, creating studio and public works. Her work is influenced by ecological practices and the complex relationship humans have had with the environment throughout time.For Collectively Assembled, I chose a painting in progress (oil paint, ink and watercolor on linen stretched over wood.) This piece explores private vs. public and is a good fit for the unique A@R space with its reconverted showers, green areas, courtyard and public programs. Initially Julia associated the blue atmosphere with the sky, but after Hurricane Sandy this aquatic color took on new meaning. The prison-like tower is a remnant from an abandoned amusement park. She incorporates the labyrinthine floor pattern of San Vitale in Ravenna, leading our eye back to the center of the painting. Its perfect triangles have been made irregular with the passing of time. We also see nature at work on the contemporary fence in the foreground. Julia observes, “Nature permeates human-made structures. Humans build barriers, yet long for reunification with nature, a constant cycle occurring throughout centuries.” The adaptable trees, growing through the fence, have been cut down to truncated branches. The trees weave in and out of the fence, itself a woven form. Repeated triangle and diamond patterns bring the eye around the entire painting.

 

A diptych, Star Island (hand-colored etching with shellac-based ink and watercolor,) will also be included in the show. Star Island is a real island off the coast of NH, where Julia spent time as a child. In this diptych, she explores how the isolated feeling of the island is conducive to fantasy. The atmospheric pink coloring breathes throughout both images like the sky at dawn or dusk. The star print fuses patterns from various cultures, including Celtic and Islamic. Julia is interested in how patterns affirm universality among cultures and are distilled from nature. She creates patterns within patterns and the star arrows are multidirectional and continuous in movement. In the landscape print, Julia explores her love for the work of Patrick Blanc, trained botanist, artist and creator of vertical gardens. She loves the ecological benefits of vertical gardens, planted on building walls, and how these beautiful creations grow and change over time. In this print, she also explores her fascination with a unique geological structure, a karst formation inPhang Nga Bay in Thailand. This rock formation has been transformed by the rise of fall of the sea level. Time and natural processes have turned it into a vertical garden structure. A ghost print of a spiral staircase weaves around this image, creating an energy field.It was wonderful to see Julia and her work, and to learn about her inspirations. I look forward to future studio visits! Julia Whitney Barnes has been a member of the tART Collective since 2006. She is on the faculty at Adelphi University. To learn more about her work, visit www.juliawhitneybarnes.com

 

 

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“Frenzy Into Folly” exhibition opens September 20, 7–9pm

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click here to my video interview about the exhibition: http://youtu.be/7T01eKGPGBM

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“Frenzy Into Folly” Exhibit at Church of St. Paul the Apostle

Fren*zy (fr?n*z?) n., 1. A state of violent mental agitation or wild excitement. 2. Temporary madness or delirium. 3. A mania; a craze.

Fol*ly (f?l*?) n., 1. A lack of good sense, understanding or foresight. 2.a. An act or instance of foolishness. b. A grand but misguided idea. 3. A thing built to satisfy a fancy or conceit, often of an eccentric kind.

The madness will ensue this fall as Openings presents Frenzy Into Folly, their largest group exhibition to date featuring the work of 38 artists at the historic Church of St. Paul the Apostle.

Openings, a collective of visual artists whose mission is to explore the connections between creativity and transcendence, will showcase work in painting, sculpture, photography, and site specific installations that will be situated throughout the church.

The exhibition runs from Sept. 14 – Oct. 26 , with the opening reception on Thursday, Sept. 20th from 7-9pm inside the church.

The show, curated by Keena Gonzalez and Michael Berube, features work by Andrew Berardi,Anthony Santella, Araceli Cruz, Carrie Elston Tunick, Daniel Nelson, Denise Penizzotto, Dennis Santella, Garry Velletri, Iliyan Ivanov, James Vanderberg, Joey Kilrain, Johanna Bartelt, John Pavlou, Julia Whitney Barnes, Keena Gonzalez, Kenneth Walker, Lori Merhige, Marjan Moghaddam, Mark Brennan, Matthew Farrell, Meg Graham, Megan Hildebrandt, Michael Berube, Oksana Prokopenko, Patricia Bellucci, Rachel Kohn, Rebecca Simon, Robert Aitchison, Roger Geier, Sandra Mack-Valencia, Sarah Hollars, Sarah Knouse, Sherry Aliberti, Steve Palermo, Suzanne Broughel, Tim Rusterholz, Virgil Alderson, and Wen-Chi Chen.

Opening Reception: September 20th 2012, 7-9pm

Exhibition Dates: September 14- October 26

Mon – Fri 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Sat – Sun 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Location : Church of St. Paul the Apostle
Corner of West 60th & Columbus Ave. (212) 265-3495
New York, New York 10019

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Article on “Refracted Nature” published in East Villager News

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Sirovich’s Center offers window(s) into mosaic

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Artist Julia Whitney Barnes in front of one of the mosaics Sirovich Center seniors created in sealed-over balcony windows. Photo by Bonnie Rosenstock


BY BONNIE ROSENSTOCK
  |  When visual artist Julia Whitney Barnes began her six-month SPARC (Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide) residency at the Sirovich Senior Center, she immediately proposed creating a lasting legacy. Inspired by 2,300-year-old Hellenist mosaics she admired during a residency in Eretria, Greece, she envisioned using that vibrant art form to transform four cemented-over former balconies in the main ballroom/auditorium of the center at 331 E. 12th St. between First and Second Aves.

“It’s especially important for older populations, who want to have a lasting mark, to be able to make something together to impact the space,” Barnes, 32, said. “I also wanted to create something that would have universal appeal.”

Collectively called “Refracted Nature,” each of the four, spectacular, 40-inch-by-60-inch mosaic panels reflects a different theme: flowers, animals, landscape and figures of people. “But the consistent theme is growth,” Barnes said.

The mosaics were a true collaboration between Barnes and about 20 seniors, ranging from 60 to 90 years old, who created hundreds of ceramic relief elements, which were combined with repurposed glass, ceramic fragments and antique dishes. Barnes contributed objects, hoarded in her Red Hook studio from street throwaways. In addition, she retrieved broken chinaware more than 100 years old from Dead Horse Bay, the Brooklyn dumping ground that closed in the 19th century.

“I thought it would be great to have something older than anyone here,” she said, of her wading adventure. “Everything in there is before Styrofoam and plastic and gorgeous.”

The popular Sirovich ceramics studio was abuzz with activity. Sheila O’Brien, 75, a Stuyvesant Town resident, said, “The project was a real challenge. Julia gave us a creative outlet, something to strive for and we had to cooperate with one another.”

Shirley Birnbaum, 80, molded ceramic flowers for one panel and a bird, fish and yellow daisy for another. The Lower East Side resident has been attending the center for 21 years and runs the regular mosaic class.

“Julia enhanced everything we did,” Birnbaum said. “The mosaics are absolutely gorgeous.”

Terry Gregory, director of the center, which is affiliated with the Educational Alliance, said this was the second project with the Department of Aging.

“We found the quality of people very high, and members gained a lot of expertise and enjoyment,” he said. “This year, we were extremely lucky in getting Julia. She has love for them and vice versa.”

Barnes has her sights set on the remaining three closed-off spaces on the wall. When she woke up the morning after the June 23 public opening, she promised herself, “I don’t know when, but I have to do them at some point.”

Her team is ready.

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