Richard Heinsohn’s recent work is a blend of abstraction and surrealism, embracing painting, photography and sculpture to explore the possible catastrophes of the Anthropocene. His work has never lacked expressive energy or ambition, but this new exhibition of aesthetically and conceptually stripped-down pieces might be one of his strongest local exhibitions to date. A place for the mind sees the artist abandoning grand narratives and themes to create a more formal display of geometric abstracts. This exhibition still includes Heinsohn’s wild color palettes and frictional compositions, but it also fits into an emerging category of contemporary painting that I call “Modern 21” – it’s a term I use to denote a 21st-century trend that sees painting recede toward the sort of pure formalism, elemental geometry, and abstract natural imagery that marked the very origins of modernist painting. A place for the mind open to Modfellows Gallery in South Nashville on January 29.
The first art museum start the new year with On the Horizon: Contemporary Cuban Art from the Pérez Art Museum Miami. The exhibition features 70 works by 50 artists, including Yoan Capote, Los Carpinteros, teresita fernandez, Zilia Sanchez and Professor Vanderbilt Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons. on the horizon opens Jan. 28 with Nashville-based artist Xander Bryantthe first solo museum exhibition, do not forget me. Bryant’s multimedia exhibit includes photos and wheat paste wall posters, as well as the installation of a large concrete slab from which the titular flowers grow.
modfellows will also open its first exhibition at its Packing Plant satellite gallery, with a reception for the East Nashville painter RyanMichael Noble February 5. And on February 25, the First will open Alma W. Thomas: All is Beautiful. This career-spanning exhibition tells the story of the life and work of Thomas, who was the first black woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum.
“Red Gate” was the highlight of Vadis Turnerit is bed mates exhibition, the artist’s personal exhibition in 2018 at The spirit of the times. The massive oval grid made of twisted, red-dyed linens dominated an entire gallery wall and marked a shift in scale for the artist, whose best-known works were painting-sized wall sculptures composed of colored ribbons, and small installations of objects and materials organized on the gallery floors. The scale can be addictive for artists, and the new Window treatments The exhibition picks up where “Red Gate” left off, finding the artist creating a whole series of new portal-like constructions constructed from curtains, sheets, gravel and copper. The pieces explore themes ranging from the connections between feminine consciousness and traditionally feminine decor, to the liminal space between domestic interiors and the natural, even wild spaces that our windows open onto. Turner won a grant from the Current Art Fund/Tri-Star Arts to help fund this exhibition, which also includes lighting and projection mapping by Mike Kluge and Jonny Kingsbury, with sound design by Emery Dobyns. This multimedia collaboration results in an immersive installation that goes far beyond a traditional sculpture exhibition. Gallery visitors concerned with Nashville’s peak disease statistics as a result of the Omicron variant will be able to enjoy the illuminated display and hear its hissing and cracking soundscape from the street – the installation will be visible at through Zeitgeist windows 24 hours a day until March 19.
One of the biggest changes coming to the Nashville gallery scene in 2020 will be the changing spaces at The packing factory – I gave a full overview of this music gallery game earlier this month in my Crawl Space column. The biggest novelties Cooperative upgrading their intimate digs in one of the building’s front galleries to the large central gallery formerly operated by Channel to Channel. Artist-run spaces like Coop — which is also a nonprofit — can schedule shows that might not lend themselves to commercial sales. Artist-run spaces also often prove to be more timely, nimble and adaptive in their programming than their institutional peers. If you want to discover the evolution of an artistic scene, go directly to the spaces where artists organize other artists. Coop has always been dedicated to welcoming creators from out of town, but its annual exhibition of its new local members is always a highlight of the calendar. In February, Coop will host works by Yanira Vissepo, Lisa Bachman Jones, quintin watkins and Beth Reitmeyer.
Nashville Artist Benji Anderson will open a personal exhibition at Elephant Gallery March 4. This exhibition promises to be another of the gallery’s full installations, and not just a conventional exhibition of 2D works hung on white walls. Anderson’s fantastical multimedia works read like a window into another world filled with mysterious natural spaces populated by bizarre creatures. This is exactly the kind of strange and irreverent work we expect to see presented at Elephant. Follow Anderson’s Instagram account (@benjianderson3) for a digital preview of one of 2022’s most anticipated shows.
Laurent Gregory is a Tennessean native who recently moved to Nashville after earning a reputation as a painter and animator at venues including MoMA, PS1, New Museum, and MOCA Los Angeles. I love Gregory’s penchant for impressionistic portraits rendered in thick layers of gooey paint. But she takes these works to a whole new level when she transforms her traditional oil paintings with stop-motion animation, bringing to life the movement implicit in her energetic lines and smeared textures. Gregory will open his new solo exhibition at The Red Arrow Gallery March 5.
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