painting features multiple faces in the foreground, most of their eyes closed and features blurred, as well as a woman in a white dress standing in the center of the frame, resting her hand on what seems to be a chair. The shape of a heart enwraps much of the background of the work.

Shelley Turley: Sound of Silence

HOLDING Contemporary presents new paintings by Portland artist Shelley Turley. Sound of Silence is Turley’s first solo exhibition in a contemporary art gallery and opens Friday, February 5 and runs through Saturday March 27. Gallery hours are by appointment Fridays and Saturdays. Social distancing rules allow for no more than two visitors in the space at a time, and masks are required. 

Shelley Turley creates dreamlike, mysterious paintings that explore themes of displacement, longing, mourning, and spiritual reflection. Through Turley’s energetic and intuitively painted gestures, intimate or odd scenes emerge. Her figuration, landscapes, and interiors are Inspired by 1960s-70s cookbooks, soap operas, pop music, advertisements, and pagan ritual. Turley’s subject matter in the paintings include hypersexualized men, romantic gardens, and hazy spirits that never quite materialize, combining unsettled strangeness with a dark, playful humor. She constructs landscapes and interior scenes for her figures to inhabit; a created space to feel a sense of belonging through an imagined fantasy realm.

Works in Sound of Silence were created in isolation after long days of contemplation of one’s own darkness: in the midst of a global pandemic, a civil rights outcry, and chaotic political events. Turley’s artworks reflect on fantasies that keep one company in the context of solitude, alienation, and spiritual seeking. Shelley Turley was born in a small town on the eastern edge of Arizona. She has since lived in Yuma, Arizona, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Brooklyn, New York. She received a BFA from the University of Utah, UT and has exhibited in New York, NY, Portland, OR, and Salt Lake City, UT. Turley lives and works in Portland.

Shelley Turley was born in a small town on the eastern edge of Arizona. She has since lived in Yuma, Arizona, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Brooklyn, New York. She received a BFA from the University of Utah, UT and has exhibited in New York, NY, Portland, OR, and Salt Lake City, UT. Turley lives and works in Portland.

HOLDING Contemporary presents exhibitions and programs by visual artists across disciplines. Through our curatorial vision and alternative community-driven business model we seek to challenge the economic and social privilege of the art world.

An abstract landscape painting with thick brushstrokes describing overlapping, rolling hills. The artist used ochre, pale pink, moss green, Kelly green, taupe, and vermillion for the different hills, with geometric highlights in white and pale yellow. Light blue hovers over the horizon, fading upward into pale yellow.

Love Letter to Bernice Bing

Bernice Bing, Mayacamas No. 6, March 12 1963, 1963.

One of my favorite aspects of the strict stay-at-home orders of March and April was the way that my Instagram feed became a portal into the inner lives of my friends. I spent hours looking at others reading, cooking, drawing, and lying in bed, seeing aspects of their creative and domestic lives that otherwise I would have never come to know.

The work of Bernice Bing (1936–1998) has the same effect on me. I think I can say I fell in love with her at first photograph: Bing on her stomach on a paint-splattered wood floor, legs crossed like she rolled into place accidentally, staring firmly at the camera, as though she was as curious about me as I about her.

But even more, it is Bing’s practically-forgotten, calligraphy-inflected West Coast abstract expressionism that captivates me. A Chinese-American lesbian, she defies abstract expressionism’s aesthetic white-hetero-male-ness, its pretense of representing the psyche stripped of context, by simple virtue of her biography. Bing makes abstraction a tool to interrogate philosophies of the mind and the self, ideas of interior and exterior, Chinese and US culture. At the same time, she breaks down the very duality of abstraction and realism. As her thick brushstrokes become ideograms—figures that mean something only after they generate an aesthetic response—she creates a new way of representing northern California, one in which the landscape opens up the inner worlds to which abstraction aims. “I am attempting to create a new synthesis with a very old world,” she said.

Bernice Bing’s work is what abstraction looks like when it is home alone, cozy, with no one watching.

Installation image of Earth at Adams and Ollman gallery. The photograph shows a corner of the gallery with five paintings hung on white walls. On the left is a large canvas with abstract, psychedelic botanical imagery next to a much smaller canvas with imperceptible content from the image's distance. On the right wall are three square paintings of the same size, each depicting flowers. One uses deep blue hues, one pinks and dark greens, and one pinks and reds.

Eartha

Adams and Ollman is pleased to present the group exhibition Eartha. Using painting as a common language, the artists included in Eartha examine the concept of the natural world and their relationship to it. Together, the works offer a different way of being in the world, one that is personal, interconnected, and spiritual, while raising questions of representation, politics, gender and pleasure. Artists included in the exhibition are Hayley Barker, Amy Bay, Mariel Capanna, Emma Cook, Ann Craven, Ka’ila Farrell-Smith, and Maureen St. Vincent.

Images are revealed as rhythmic dashes, and dots of luscious color accumulate on the surfaces of Hayley Barker’s (lives and works in Los Angeles, CA) visionary paintings. Mediumistic and deeply spiritual, the images in Barker’s works are formed by ecstatic movements that create parallel worlds, ones in which divisions of figure and ground, interior and exterior, dream and reality, dissolve amidst undulating layers of light and shadow.

Amy Bay (lives and works in Portland, OR) mines stereotypically feminine realms—floral motifs, pattern, and decoration—in an ongoing series of lush, small-scale paintings that capture flowers in vibrant hues of red, blue, and yellow. Since 2017, Bay has explored the varied ways that flowers are depicted in everything from classical still-life paintings to folk art, wall coverings and textiles. Embracing the decorative, Bay celebrates the beauty and life-giving forces of flowers, depicting them in immersive realms of pure color, shape, and pleasure.

Working from films, documentaries, slideshows of found photos, and home videos, Mariel Capanna (lives and works in Salt Lake City, UT) captures landscapes in motion. With deft brushstrokes and thickly applied paint, Capanna depicts details as they move across the screen and out of the picture. Her dense surfaces are accumulations of flowers, cars, fountains, chairs, fires, and other images that come quickly into focus and then out of sight, marking a simultaneous awareness of both stillness and the passage of time.

In Emma Cook’s (lives and works in Austin, TX) monochromatic paintings, signs and symbols emerge from patterned fields of undulated lines or dense foliage. In these shape-shifting environments, female figures, candelabras, symbolic gates and newspaper headlines spring into focus from graphic grounds, functioning like a visual archaeology of place as they hint at unsettling narratives and latent histories.

Since 1995, Ann Craven (lives and works in New York, NY and Cushing, ME) has been capturing the moon in a series of paintings made in plein-air from the coast of the Eastern Seaboard—in Connecticut, Maine and New York City—to the cities of Paris and Reims in France. Each marked by a date, a time and a place, Craven’s catalog of moons, rendered in oil paint with assured strokes and luscious color, explores the astronomical body as a feminine symbol and as a marker of rhythms, cycles, and time.

Ka’ila Farrell-Smith’s (Klamath Modoc; lives and works in Modoc Point, OR) bold, colorful paintings are rooted in Indigenous aesthetics and the history of abstraction. Engaged in formal experimentation and play, the works use a distinct visual vocabulary that includes text, pattern, symbol, line, and gesture to explore the landscape in between Indigenous and western paradigms.

Maureen St. Vincent (lives and works in the Bay Area, CA) employs a surrealist vocabulary as she isolates and re-contextualizes elements of both the figure and the landscape. Sinewy lines create a road map through a terrain of erotic female body parts while we catch glimpses of the landscape through vagina-like portals. Rendered in soft pastels, the works show us an uncanny interconnectedness of body and land.

 

Fernando Reyes: This Land

“This Land” will be Fernando Reyes’ final solo exhibition at Mercury 20 Gallery. The artist and his husband recently purchased a home they call “Fair Oaks” in Somerset, a quiet town in El Dorado county. The 10-acre property is home to countless lively oak trees, manzanitas and other natural wonders.

In this exhibition, Reyes will show work in multiple media: paper cutouts of blooming irises from his garden, landscape paintings in oil, and a large-scale woodcut titled “Winter Oak”. Fernando’s exhibition expresses the visual pleasures of the classic California landscape surrounding this sanctuary in the Sierra Foothills.

OCTOBER 23 – NOVEMBER 28, 2020
Gallery open Friday & Saturday, 12-6, or by appointment
475 25th Street, Oakland, between Telegraph & Broadway, (510) 701-4620

 

 

 

A impressionist painting of a woman walking into a lake. Her face is angled down to look at the water. The whole scene is warm hued, and the surrounding nature reflects in the lake's surface.

Drew Bennett: The River Laughs While The Sky Cries

Ever Gold [Projects] is pleased to present The River Laughs While The Sky Cries, the gallery’s second solo exhibition with Oakland-based artist Drew Bennett. The exhibition will be open** and on view to the public from September 19 – October 31, as well as accessible through a number of online platforms, accompanied by public programs, collaborations, and an artist book release.

Building upon it flows through and all around you, Bennett’s first solo exhibition in 2019, the artist continues his discovery, through painting, of the relationship between the human body and nature. He approaches this through a contemporary aesthetic that combines the traditions of romantic landscape painting with interpretations of photographic snapshots and memories.

There is an underlying tension to being in nature. In the same moment, one can be awestruck yet quite literally fall off the trail. Knowing this, Bennett aims to remind the viewer of the rewards for giving over to the world around us, even to the extent of getting lost, an experience and feeling he holds onto deeply out in nature and as part of his studio process. His painted scenes all contain autobiographical elements of personal adventures into the land yet leave a spaciousness for the viewer to imagine their own journey. Bennett’s backgrounds and foregrounds do more than just set the stage for humans in nature, they are dynamic layers rich with color that meld and merge, allowing his subjects to become intertwined, co-existent, and in some works obscured from the scene completely.

As stated in the commissioned essay for this exhibition by David Wilson, Bennett’s deep connection to the scenes and emotions in this imagery are in fact part of back-to-the-land experiences, many of which he has cultivated with David and other Bay Area artists. Bennett has affectionately referred to this group as the Naturalists. An idealistic celebration of nature as a subject matter is not new to Northern California artists, nor the history of American art since the Hudson River School. In a time when we are ever-reminded of the forces in the natural world that can drastically alter human life, from a cellular level to a few degree changes in our atmosphere, Bennett’s work aims to re-center nature’s sublime essence as an all-powerful and constant force of good in our collective existence. These paintings guide us back to a celebration of the human body in harmony with nature, restoring faith in the cycle of life.

Drew Bennett (b. 1981, Chicago, IL) is an Oakland-based artist. He graduated from Colorado College in 2004 (BA, Fine Arts). Bennett moved to San Francisco in 2005 where he exhibited painting, installation and social practice work as well as developed his own business as a designer and builder. In 2012, Bennett founded FB AIR, Facebook’s artist in residency program. Between 2012 and 2018, Bennett grew the program from a headquarters-based residency experience to an international site-specific installation program commissioning hundreds of new works annually. In 2015, Bennett co-founded Starline Social Club (Oakland) with Adam Hatch and Sam White.  Now resigned from his roles at Facebook and Starline, he is dedicated to his art and family. 

** Note to Visitors

In order to provide a safe environment for our staff and the public, visitors will be asked to comply with the following protocols as well as to respect instructions given by gallery staff.

– A temperature check will be electronically taken before entry by Minnesota Street Project’s visitor services.
– A limited number of visitors will be permitted within the exhibition spaces.
– Advance appointments are required.
– Visitors must wear masks for the duration of their visit.
– Visitors must maintain at least 6 feet distance from others.
– Hand sanitizer will be provided for use.

Please contact info@evergoldprojects.com with any questions about these guidelines, or to schedule your visit.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

In the left half of the image, a sculpture by Sharif Farrag sits on a tall white plinth. To the right, a small landscape painting by Lois Dodd hangs on the wall.

Lois Dodd & Sharif Farrag

Adams and Ollman is pleased to announce an intergenerational pairing of two solo exhibitions opening on September 12: a selection of paintings from 1986 to 2017 by Lois Dodd (b. 1927), presented in collaboration with Alexandre Gallery, New York, will be on view alongside new ceramic sculptures by Sharif Farrag (b. 1993). This marks Farrag’s first exhibition at the gallery as well as the first significant presentation of Dodd’s work on the West Coast.

Lois Dodd’s paintings depict landscapes and locations—the Lower East Side in New York City, rural Mid-Coast Maine and the Delaware Water Gap in New Jersey—where the artist has lived and worked for over seventy years. Often completed in one session, Dodd’s intimate, small-scaled works feature the plants, trees, buildings, laundry, and moonlit sky that she has observed and recorded across seasons and over years. Dodd’s flat, distilled imagery is rendered with thin paint in luscious colors—ochres, pinks, greens and blues—and quick strokes that exist on their own as pure abstraction freed from descriptive responsibility. Her sensitive and emotive surfaces capture both the immediacy of direct experience of each place—the motion, light and feeling—as well as the spiritual aspects of the landscape.

A work from 2008 contains the image of an apple tree dappled with spring light in a foggy field; a work created seven years later shows what could be the same tree, now mature and full with fruit, framed through Dodd’s barn window. Dodd’s prolonged engagement with her subjects makes meaning— close attention to details, rhythms and changes across days and seasons adds up to a lifetime of wonder and a lasting record of place and experience.

California artist Sharif Farrag’s sculptural ceramic vessels contain a clash of references and values, offering cacophonies of thorny vines, skulls, comic book figures, dollar store trinkets, muscle cars, mosquitos and mythical creatures fashioned from a riot of colors and glazes. The artist’s objects and installations pull from his experience growing up as the child of immigrants in California’s San Fernando Valley. As a first generation Muslim American coming of age in the years immediately following 9/11, Farrag found refuge and community in the punk, graffiti and skateboard subcultures of the Los Angeles suburbs.

These early experiences helped to shape a personal iconography that is also deeply influenced by the visual, cultural and social traditions brought by his parents from their native countries of Egypt and Syria. Indebted to California’s funk art movement, Farrag’s vessels and figurative ceramics incorporate humor, autobiographical and surrealist elements, as well as unconventional forms and media, filtered through the perspective of his own generation.

Lois Dodd (b. 1927) has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions throughout the United States, including shows at Ogunquit Museum of American Art, ME (2018); Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, M (2014); Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, ME (2004); Montclair Art Museum, NJ (1996); and Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH (1990). A retrospective organized in 2012 by the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO, travelled to Portland Museum of Art, ME, the following year. From 1971 to 1992, Dodd taught at Brooklyn College, NY. She has also held positions at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and Vermont Studio Center. Her work can be found in numerous public collections including The Art Institute of Chicago; Hall Art Foundation, Holle; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven. Dodd lives and works between Maine, the Delaware Water Gap, and New York, NY.

Sharif Farrag (b. 1993) lives and works in Los Angeles. He has been an artist in residence at the Ceramics Department of California State University Long Beach since 2018, and in 2019 he was awarded a residency at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He holds a BFA from the University of Southern California.