April on Art and Music
in Palm Beach County
Twenty-four year old Andrei Ionita proved that the cello is the most romantic of all instruments last Thursday April 17th at Trinity Church in West Palm Beach. From the first moment of the concert, Ionita hypnotized the audience. The cello he was playing sang, soared, moaned, and flirted. The sound he elicited appeared to depend not just on what was written by the composers, but even more on the emotions he generated playing each piece.
The concert was part of the Young Artists Series sponsored by the Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach. Ionita was accompanied by Naoko Sonoda on the piano in her first performance in the United States.
Right from the joyful opening of the first selection—18th century composer Pietro Locatelli’s Sonata in D Major—Romanian-born Ionita showed complete of his instrument and the ability to vary moods as if the cello were alive in his hands. It is no wonder he won a Gold Medal at the 2015 XV International Tchaikovsky Competition and was on his way to perform April 19 at Carnegie Hall.
The Locatelli was in some ways the showcase piece of the evening. It was followed by two 20th century pieces followed—Stravinsky’s Suite Italienne and Shostakovich’s Cello Sonata in D minor, Op. 40. Of the two, the Shostakovich was the most satisfying, perhaps because of its plaintive and brooding first movement—or the way in which the piano melodies intertwined so completely with the cello at certain points. No matter, all three pieces captured the hearts of the audience.
As the evening drew to a close, it was clear the audience wanted more. Fortunately, there was only two weeks to wait until the next performance in the 2017-2018 season of the Young Artists Series. It will take place Wednesday, April 25 at 6 pm at the Breakers in Palm Beach, and feature a new trio composed of violinist Arnaud Sussman and pianist Orian Weiss, both winners of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant. They will be joined by cellist Colin Carr.
For further information on this event call 561-379-6773 or
email the CMSPB at email@example.com.
Symphonia brings music of Mozart and Beethoven to Delray!
The Symphonia--South Florida's world class chamber orchestra--presented an enticing selection of classical music pieces--with Viennese origins and connections--on Tuesday March 27 at Delray's Crest Theatre. Dramatic conductor Alastair Willis tied the music selections together throught a fictionalized and engaging narration which transported the audience to 18th and 19th c. Viennese concert halls where composers such as Mozart premiered their own work.
The engaging Mr. Willis began the evening in 18th century Vienna. He assumed the role of a nephew of Signmund Haffner der Elder, once mayor of Salzburg and head of a family close to the Mozarts. In this role, from a podium in Vienna, Mr. Willis described some of the great music events of the time, while two digital screens projected pictures of that delightful baroque city on either side of the stage. The first event was the moment when Mozart conducted the first performance of his famous Symphony No. 35, "The Haffner" (named after the mayor's family), while Emperor Franz Joseph sat in the royal box above.
Naturally, Mr. Willis brought the evening to a close with a composition of Vienna's most famous 19th century musical family--the Strausses--
"The Blue Danube" waltz, which still delights and hypnotizes us today.
It was an evening of joy for both newcomers to the classical music scene, and afficionados who knew the music by heart. The conductor gave the audience the feeling they were sitting in gilded concert halls of over two centuries ago listening to music that remains as powerful and enjoyable today as it did when it was first performed.
This was the first time The Symphonia has performed in the Crest Theatre. The performance was part of a new series entitled "Symphonia Squared" being sponsored in partnership with Old SchoolSquare. For more information on The Symphonia, go to www.thesymphonia.org/
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City is
one of America's Greatest Treasures--
It should be open to everyone for whatever they can afford to pay
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of New York's greatest attractions. It also contains some of the best art in the world...Its treasures should be accessible to everyone without a fee (if they can't afford it)--not just "free" to those who live in New York City itself.
Furthermore, this $25 out-of-towner entry fee is not only wrong in terms of art itself, it is also elitist and regressive. The trustees are clearly stating that "art is for the rich" or "art is for who can afford it." The donors gave these treasures to the museum so the public could see them and not be excluded by this type of entry fee.
Finally, as I understand it, the irony is that these fees will not put a big dent in the deficit faced by the Museum. So, the trustees should find other ways to close the gap.
As an art lover and critic, I say -- LET'S FIGHT BACK!
Classics by Ohr, plus works by 15 modern ceramicists
An joyful mixture of contemporary sculptural ceramics, along with influential works by George Ohr, "The Mad Potter of Biloxi," are on display at the Boca Museum from November 7, 2017 to April 8, 2018. Entitled "Regarding George Ohr: Contemporary Ceramics in the Spirit of the Mad Potter," this unique exhibition shouldn't be missed. Seen above, left to right are: A Single Joy of Song by Betty Woodman; center and right, Stella and Nestoris II, both by Nicole Cherubini.
Ohr's work still startles us, but he opened doors!
Enter this amazing exhibition at the Boca Museum and you will be hit with a double whammy. The strange abstract art pottery of the "Mad Potter of Biloxi," George Ohr, is waiting for you in the opening hall. Many of these pieces are glazed in surprising, starling, dark and moody colors; and some of them even project a sense of hesitancy or underlying conflict. But the work in the last case, most of it created in the 1890s, has a different aesthetic. It projects strength and power, and an abstract look far ahead of its time.
Walk a few steps further and you're in for a surprise: A large airy gallery, filled with colorful, happy sculptural ceramic installations. These burst forth with beauty, joy, and bright colors--very different from Ohr's work. But at the same time, they are clearly influenced by him. That accounts for the title of the show: "Regarding George Ohr: Contemporary Ceramics in the Spirit of the Mad Potter."
Rare Ohr ceramics on display in opening hall
Two pieces--above left--on display in the exhibition illustrate Ohr's ability to combine traditional shapes with with startling colors and glazes. On the right, you can see the jump he made in the 1890s. He collapsed those shapes, twisted them, created thin walls, and came up with an abstract effect. The Arts and Crafts Movement of the day scorned these stange-looking pieces. But 50 years later artists like Jasper Johns and others consider him a forerunner of Abstract Expressionism. Today, it's hard to find these 1890s pieces for sale, and their prices keep rising. The most iconic pieces on display here come primarily from the collection of Marty and Estelle Shack, local collectors.
Ceramics expert Garth Clark sought out the artists
Garth Clark, the guest curator who put toether the show, says that he looked for artists "whose work continues the legacy of Ohr without copying it." He certainly succeeded.
Plus, he managed to pull together a group of ceramic artists whose work today is considered "fine art"---not just decorative or utilitarian, as ceramics were thought of in Ohr's day.
Indeed, today many artists and critics believe that Ohr's abstract art pottery hastened the transition of American ceramics from the world of utilitarian function to that of "fine art." The Boca Museum offers visitors an unusual opportunity to examine the work of many of these outstanding contemporary ceramic sculptural artists in one venue. The show runs from from Nov. 7, 2017 to April 8, 2018. For more details, see the my PalmBeachArtsPaper Ohr preview posted on my website, www.klimley.com.
Over 300 people crowd into beautiful modern space
It was almost a gala--the opening of the new Boca Artists Guild Gallery lasat week. Over 300 people arrived for the opening Wedneday Nov. 15 and avidly examined all the art--beautifully displayed on the well lit walls of the large new space--over three times that of the former gallery in Delray. Great variety of different types of painting, photography and sculpture--both abstract and representational. Interesting art jewelry in cases. Good food and wine. Lots of smiles. Animated conversation and many reunions! It seemed as if the event was opening the winter "season" here in South Palm Beach County!
This space looks as if it will be very successful for members of the Guild. Much more space. Better lighting. More room for more art. It has a good chance of attracting will serious art buyers, along with those loyal art afficionados, both during and after "the season." Check out the video below. The gallery is located at 2910 N. Federal Highway. Plenty of good parking and other interesting stores nearby.
Grand Opening Reception Tonight
Join the arts community at tonight's
Opening Reception of the Artists Guild in Boca.
The ehe Guild has moved from Delray to Boca. It now has an exciting, much larger gallery space--with plenty of room to display the works of Guild Members. The Opening Reception is free to the public tonight Nov. 15, 2017. Join us to enjoy plentiful New Works by Guild Members, free refreshments, and good art conversation as the winter season jumps into high gear. Hope to see you there. The event runs from 6 pm to 8 pm. Address: 2910 N. Federal Highway.
"Art of Women Who Resist" -- Came and Went Too Quickly
Resistance comes in many forms: marches, books--and even in art in Palm Beach County, FL. A small gallery in Lake Worth stepped up to join the protest movement this summer with an strong, colorful display of locally-produced resistance art ranging from political buttons to collages, sculpture and paintings.
Held the last two weeks of August, the exhibit, commonly known as "Art of Women Who Resist", attracted a large audience at its opening August 18. The event included food and protest songs, while outside, a few Trump supporters showed up to protest this art event. (A protest of a protest?) The Clay, Glass, Metal Stone Gallery at 15 South J Street, Lake Worth, organized the show. The gallery is sponsored by the Flamingo Clay Studio at 216 South F St. [For more information on the art in photographs above and below, please call the gallery at 561-588-8344.]
"Bread and Roses" was the real title of the exhibit
although everyone was calling it by its "resistance" subtitle.
In 1912 immigrant women textile workers held a major strike in Lawrence, MA. They were protesting a cut in pay, and carried banners demanding both living wages and dignity which said "We want bread, and roses, too". That slogan became the name of the strike. After a long struggle through a mercilessly cold winter, the strikers won with a 20% wage increase from the mill owners. A few pieces in the exhibition referred back to those times. One was the dressmaker's torso manniquin I'm standing next to. It carries a double message. It's draped in a suffragette "Votes for Women" sash and sports a sign lower down saying "Congress, You Work For Us". (Shown below.)
Over 100 years after that strike, most artists in this exhibit focused on a very different type of political action--creating messages that reflected the resistance movement of today. Behind these was the belief that many of the actions taken by the present administration is trying to turn back the wheels of social progress for women and minorities.
The second edition of Art Boca Raton is capturing the city's heart. But it is doing so very differently than it did last year. At first, some visitors were surprised by the large number of 20th c. masterworks, even though the fair was billed as an contemporary art fair. But by the end of Friday, the first full day of the show, visitors found the contemporary art--much of it in the Parisian galleries--and were delighted by it.
However, the 20th century masterpieces should not be missed. Some of the best examples of this work are found in Howard Brassner’s Art Link International (Booths 100, 101 and 102) and Sandra Neustadter’s corner gallery (Booth 121).
When it comes to more contemporary pieces of art, make a beeline for the Masterpieces Fine Art gallery. Right right across from a Picasso you will find an exciting piece of contemporary art: Rainbow Rhythm by Israeli artist Yaacar Agam--a rectangular canvas consisting of vertical fan folds that delight the eye as you walk past and the colors appear to move and change constantly. (Booths 103-2014) www.masterworksfineart.com/
Other versions of optical illusion art turn up at a number of other galleries. This pointellist painting entitled Marilyn by Gavin Rain looks totally abstract to the naked eye. But when you look through a camera--or photograph it--a face emerges. Very fascinating. But to me too gimmicky--as if the artist would rather make films than paintings.
trandor shock value and edginess, the best place to go is the Gallery 55 Bellechasse from Paris. Don’t be put off by the angry faces and scribbles you'll see at first. Other paintings inside the booth are less distressing, but capture emotions and ideas not seen elsewhere in the show. Many of these pieces are short through with pain and anger. But as gallery owner Bertrand Scholler says, “It’s what happening now” He is certainly correct from a historical perspective.
Most gripping to me in his booth are a series of portraits of Muslim women. They are by the Iranian artist Niloufar Banisadr. Each woman is draped in khimar (coving hair, neck and shoulders), but bare flesh is exposed in two of the artworks. All four pieces reflect different repressive and confusing forces Muslim women must confront each day in their homelands.
The broad variety of 20th century, coupled with edgy, contemporary pieces, is making ArtBocaRaton worthwhile this year. These top quality offerings counterbalance the qualms some visitors felt entering the show. when they saw a big sign for "Nieman Marcus” -- with decorative glass for sale. The commercialism this display put some people off. But the store was a major funder of the exhibition. It even sponsored some side events at the Boca Museum. So, all in all, most people forgot about this commercialism. As they toured the show they saw great 20th century art, examined new contemporary art, chatted with dealers and made purchases. They were satisfied, since, after all, that is what they came for!
IF YOU GO: Art Boca Raton contemporary fair runs through Sunday March 19th and is located on the campus of Florida Atlantic University. See link for directions. http://nextlevelfairs.com/artbocaraton/
April on Art and Music