Tag Archives: painting

New Work at The Chapel

 

orange lips and fingertips, acrylic and oil on canvas, 56"x62", 2012

On Sunday orange lips and fingertips (pictured above) made its debut at The Chapel, a gallery that operates in association with Memorial Presbyterian Church in St. Louis, MO.  I’m showing four recent paintings alongside folded paper works by Marguerite Corey and photographs by Sylvester Jacobs.  If you missed the public reception, you can catch the show again on November 11 or by appointment (info@johnsarra.com).  Each of these paintings addresses concerns of gain and loss by way of memory, consumption, and death, reflecting upon what we take and what we leave behind.

smoke-shaped forest, ink, shellac, and oil on paper, 22"x30", 2012

I thought that I had finished smoke-shaped forest back in May (see the post from May 8, below), but ended up reworking the painting in early October.  The rising embers seemed to resonate with the blowing/falling cheese puffs, and as a result this piece edged out the competition for inclusion in the exhibition.  It’s another meditation on gains and losses, a depiction of cleared land with irregular trees and stumps scraped into a burn pile while the city throws its own light up over the horizon.  I’ll need to post a future image including the frame, which I made out of reclaimed quarter-sawn red oak.  The distinctive medullary rays provide a contrast to the starkness of the image, and its reclaimed nature (made evident by a few nail holes) is intended as an argument on behalf of both use and preservation.

 

back to basics

Junior Kindergarteners at Central Christian School get quizzed regarding recognition and the "real".

This morning I visited my daughter’s Junior Kindergarten classroom, where they are completing a unit on artists and art making.  It was an opportunity to tell them about what I do in my own studio, and to talk about some of the reasons that we make works of art.  One of the great things about art making is that it is accessible on so many levels.  It was fun to be able to discuss the same impulses and ideas that are of interest to my college and graduate students, and to see these four and five year old faces light up with an understanding of the differences between found and made things, realities and representations, and the ways that we try to hold on to things which are otherwise ephemeral and fleeting.

Regarding Place

GlobeShaped_front

Come out this Friday, June 25, for the opening of the exhibition Regarding Place, curated by Jana Harper.  Two of my recent paintings, love seat and where we stand is beginning to end, are included in the show.  There will be plenty of other work to see, as this is a part of a larger exhibition series.  You can read more about it here.  The opening is from 6-8 p.m. at the St. Louis Artists’ Guild, Two Oak Knoll Park, Clayton, MO, 63105.  The exhibition will be on view through August 20, and regular gallery hours are 12-4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

new work

installation view with bench

installation view with bench

Friday’s opening was an enjoyable one, thanks to the large crowd that didn’t seem to want to go home.  I had a real sense of accomplishment seeing the 12 pieces on the wall and under the lights, with six of the paintings being finished very recently– some as late as March 2nd.  Many thanks to Ellen Gochnour for orchestrating the exhibition, which will be on view through March 26.  I have included images of the most recent work, below.

love seat, oil on canvas, 54x 64, 2010

love seat, oil on canvas, 54x 64, 2010

annunciation, oil on canvas, 41x 30, 2010

annunciation, oil on canvas, 41x 30, 2010

we’ll work with what we’ve got, oil on canvas, 50 x 46, 2010

where we stand is beginning to end, oil on canvas, 50 x 46, 2010

a tree for our sorrow: memorial, oil on canvas, 40x 54, 2010

a tree for our sorrow: memorial, oil on canvas, 40x 54, 2010

a tree for our joy: memorial, oil on panel, 9.25x 10.5, 2010

a tree for our joy: memorial, oil on panel, 9.25x 10.5, 2010

our geometry is a fiction of cleanliness, oil on canvas, 64x 54, 2010

our geometry is a fiction of cleanliness, oil on canvas, 64x 54, 2010