August 29, 2014
The more the merrier in the art world?
Albuquerque Journal North, 08/29/2014
Tom Collins


The more the merrier in the art world?
Albuquerque Journal North, 08/29/2014
Tom Collins

David Richard Gallery
Around the corner from IFAM and also in the Railyard, Fenichel, Botts and Rubinstein sounds like a tough criminal law firm, but it’s really a superb show at David Richard Gallery.

Gregory Botts presents some attractive pale blue, bluer and bluest landscapes in a series of Madrid (New Mexico) landscapes. Cool, quick, thinly painted, nicely composed with hints of Matisse and Milton Avery.

Meridel Rubinstein has been fooling around with photographs since way before it became so easy in the digital age.

Her cut-ups, collages and cubist-oriented works, from traditional photos to photo-based installations, have always had a socio-political edge, if not point, and this is the case now with a three-part exploration of planetary socio-ecological imbalances, “Eden Turned on its Side.” Arcadia Redux? seems to be the question addressed in this blizzard of constructed images ranging from “Photosynthesis,” dramatic deep color specimens of flora and fauna on black ground, to a “Volcano Cycle” examining the destructive regeneration of Indonesian volcanoes, and finally something about the destruction of Iraq and its ancient marshes in the south, purportedly in the neighborhood of the mytho-historical Eden.

Finally, a trio of eye-popping oil on polypropylene color on whiter-than-white “spills” greet you at Lilly Fenichel’s retrospective, REWIND<>REPLAY: 1950-2014. They announce that Fenichel may have saved some of her best work for now and stepped into her own visual Garden of Paradise. Perseverance furthers, it is said, and, after six decades of work, she remains very much at the table and proves the point with these three sublime color-combos – “Bangal,” “Forbidden Fruit II” (speaking of Eden) and “Schiele’s Hand.”

Beginning at the beginning of her career, with the brooding 1950 AE oil/canvas "Ochre, Red, Blue," this compact exhibition allows us to appreciate the work of an artist of keen clinical/critical intelligence — intellectual, emotional, and probably spiritual - responding to her own nature and the culture of her time.

Born in Austria and escaped to California - as far as you could get from the coming horror of Europe in every way - Ms. Fenichel studied at Chouinard Art Institute in L.A., and in a golden era at California School of Fine Art in San Franciso with Elmer Bischoff, Ed Corbett, David Park, et al. Her mostly non-objective work - two-dimensional, and three-dimensional, on- and off-the-wall - has been executed in traditional canvas and paper, and with everything from wood to wood panel, fiberglass, fiberboard, to the aforementioned synthetic polypropylene, most recently.

Eventually, Ms. Fenichel escaped the macho, boys club ambience of the Sixties LA art scene to live and work in New Mexico for the last several decades, from Taos and environs down to Albuquerque. Her visual discourse from AE to post-AE to Pop, neo-Expressionism, color field, even Surrealism, etc.,å has always had more than a tinge of deep Romanticism for all the rigor of its conception and execution. And the stripped-down, in-your-face step into the sensual and sublime of her latest works is evidence of that.

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January 17, 2017
Globalocation: Celebrating 20 Years of Artnauts
J. Willard Marriott Library
The University of Utah, 01/17/2017

The University of Utah’s J. Willard Marriott Library will host the art exhibition Globalocation: Celebrating 20 Years of Artnauts, Jan. 20-March 3.

Artnauts, an art collective formed 20 years ago by George Rivera, professor of art and art history at the University of Colorado, Boulder, consists of 300 global artists who serve as goodwill ambassadors, acknowledging and supporting victims of oppression worldwide. Their creativity has generated over 230 exhibitions across five continents. Five faculty members from the U’s Department of Art and Art History are members of the collective, Sandy Brunvand, Beth Krensky, V. Kim Martinez, Brian Snapp and Xi Zhang.

Globalocation derives from “Globalocational Art” — a concept used by the Artnauts to refer to their exhibitions in international venues. It is the mission of the Artnauts to take art to places of contention, and this anniversary exhibition is a sample of places where they have been and themes they have addressed.

“The Artnauts could not exist without the commitment of the artists in the collective to a common vision of the transformative power of art,” said Rivera. “The Artnauts make their contribution with art that hopefully generates a dialogue with an international community on subjects that are sometimes difficult to raise.”

Krensky, associate department chair of the Art and Art History Department, had the opportunity to travel with Rivera in Chile as part of an Artnauts project, working with mothers who were searching for their children who had mysteriously disappeared during a time of political unrest.

“When I travelled to Chile in 1998, George and I spent an afternoon with the Mothers of the Disappeared, and the meeting changed my life,” said Krensky. “It was from that moment on that I placed a picture of them on my desk to look at every day. I was so moved by what they each had lost — a son, a brother, a father — and yet what remained for them was a deep, deep well of love. They were fierce warriors and stood up to the government to demand the whereabouts and information of the people who had disappeared, but they lived within profound love.”

The 20th anniversary exhibition at the Marriott Library is a retrospective of the traveling works the Artnauts have toured around the globe. The exhibition will be located on level three of the library. The opening reception is open to the public and will be held on Friday, Jan 20, 4-6 p.m. Rivera will speak at 4 p.m.

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