The Power of Art
 
Univeristy of Miami’s Wynwood Art Gallery holds its annual faculty exhibition featuring thought-provoking art pieces in a variety of mediums.
 
 
 
Art is an excuse for a conversation, said artist Billie Lynn. 
 
She is one of the exhibiting artists at this year’s annual University of Miami faculty exhibition at the Wynwood Gallery. Lynn’s provocative art piece entitled American Mask, has attracted glances and murmurs from passersby as the artwork looms in a gallery window.

The piece consists of three American flags fashioned as Ku Klux Klan hoods that are on a cart with wheels in the shape of a Nazi swastika.

“I’ve always felt that art could and should act as a mirror to the culture, so that we can have these kinds of conversations within the context of talking about art,” said Lynn, an associate professor of sculpture and associate chair and graduate director in the Department of Art and Art History at UM’s College of Arts and Sciences. 

Lynn had just visited the gallery, in its final preparations for its opening on October 23, and described a conversation she had with one curious, and very angry, construction worker who was observing the artwork: “I asked him what he thought it meant and he said, ‘It’s racist.’ And I said, ‘Well, it is racist, it’s about racism. It’s about people hiding their racism behind the flag, behind their patriotism.’ Instantly all of his angry energy just dissipated as he had this realization. This is what democracy is. It’s messy business and it requires us to talk with each other.”

The kinetic and interactive sculpture artist felt compelled to make this stimulating piece, part of her larger collection entitled American Empire, she said, after watching the 2017 Charlottesville riots where protesters were carrying the American flag next to a Nazi flag and a Confederate battle flag.

“I just thought, that’s what needs to be protested—that the American flag is positioned in between those two symbols of hatred and racism,” she said. “If there was ever a time to show this work, it’s now.”

The piece, Lynn explains, is “addressing what’s going on in this country with how racists, the alt-right, white supremacists, neo-Nazis and other bigots at large are using the American flag as a mask for their own beliefs.”

A former girl scout who was taught to never let the flag touch the ground, Lynn explained the difficulty of creating this art.

“I consider myself a patriot and I love this country. It was very painful for me to cut the flag to make it into that shape. But I think that’s what’s happening, the country is in pain,” she said. “We’re being torn apart by believing that somehow having nationalistic pride is connected to being of a certain race, the white race, and the real truth of this country is that we’re a melting pot, people from all over the world with different beliefs, different orientations, different ideas. That’s what makes America great. And I don’t want the American flag to be taken as a symbol for white supremacy, and I think that is what’s happening and that’s a dark path to go down.”

American Mask is one thought-provoking piece alongside many others at this year’s faculty exhibition, including work by Tom Lopez, Kyle Trowbridge, Jeff Larson, Lauren Shapiro and Brian Curtis. Located in Wynwood since 2007 and housed in a stark black and white façade—nicknamed the ‘zebra’ building—the UM Wynwood Art Gallery is often in the midst of art steeped in social, cultural and political commentary. The featured art is in a variety of different mediums—including painting, ceramics, 3-D printed sculptures, photography, a video installation and printmaking—and reflect different topics around human existence and the general state of affairs of the country and the world.

The exhibition is open to all full-time, part-time and adjunct faculty from the Department of Art and Art History in the College of Arts and Sciences, and is not curated or following any particular theme.

“Everyone has an opportunity to participate, and each faculty member selects their strongest piece to exhibit,” explains Milly Cardoso, gallery director at the UM Wynwood Art Gallery. “My job is to place everything in the gallery so that the art pieces complement each other. The pieces speak for themselves.”

The student-centered UM Wynwood Art Gallery is home to juried and curated student artwork by UM art students throughout most of the year, save for the annual faculty exhibition in November and during the summer when the gallery occasionally hosts external artists and exhibitors. Because of complications with Hurricane Irma in September, explained Cardoso, this year’s faculty exhibition was pushed up to start in October.

The faculty art exhibition will run from October 23 to November 12, with a reception to be held on Saturday, November 11 from 6 to 9 p.m.

 

 

Edward David Ghannam (1936 - 2017)

May 11, 1936 - June 21, 2017

Ed was predeceased by his parents, Rose Ghannam and David Ghannam and brother Joe Ghannam. He leaves his daughter, Cynthia Youngs, son Sean Ghannam and grandchildren Joseph Youngs, Jacob Youngs, Emma Youngs, and Aedan Ghannam; brothers David Ghannam Jr., Dr. Ross Ghannam and sister Marcia Farah and companion Deanna Lutz. Ed grew up in Lansing, Michigan and was a veteran of the Korean Conflict. He earned his Master of Fine Arts degree in photography, graphic design and printmaking from Michigan State University, where he was awarded an Arts and Sciences Fellowship. In 1968 he began teaching photography at the Cleveland Institute of Art. Then, in 1971, he created a photography and graphic design curriculum at the university of Miami where he taught until 2003. He was always ahead of the curve with technological changes in his field. his love of and dedication to his work benefited thousands of students over his many years at U of M. Professor Ghannam's art has been exhibited in twenty three states and four countries. A private service will be held.

 
 
J. Tomás López
The Portrait Series
May 25, 2017 – September 17, 2017
 

The eyes are the window of the soul. This aphorism, which implies a connection between the seen and the unseen, speaks to the sometimes uneasy link between the visible and incorporeal. The eyes thus become a gateway to the anima, which in turn grants entry into the human psyche. Connections such as these are laid bare in J. Tomás López: The Portrait Series, a new body of work by this well-established artist. Rendered in soft focus, the works in this series are characterized by the hazy blending of the facial features, hair, and clothing of their sitters, who are set against abstracted tawny-amber backgrounds. Yet the subjects’ eyes—whether open or shut—are revealed in intense, hyper-focused detail. The viewer is thus brought face-to-face with López’s subjects (key figures in Miami’s artistic, cultural, and educational arenas), in intimate moments that feel almost confessional in nature. Here is where the vehicle (eyes) carries us, the viewers, into that space (psyche) in a formidable and evanescent way—a soft glide into the subjects’ inner essence, poignantly captured.

Drawing from his personal pantheon of artist heroes, López evokes the powerful imagery of 19th-century master portrait photographers like Nadar (Gaspar Félix Tournachon) and Julia Margaret Cameron in his work. The Portrait Series exemplifies his acute interest in the continuation of contemporary photographic processes, which produce beautiful, high-quality images that are rich in tone and outstanding in visual resolution, thus rendering Lopez’s work uniquely his own. These works equally signal time and space, glimpses into the development of the photographic process past and present, and a lens focused on the intense and exact moment when, through the eyes, we confront the soul.

J. Tomás López is a Professor in the Department of Art and Art History and the Head of Electronic Media at the University of Miami.

Lowe Art Museum, University of Miami
1301 Stanford Drive
Coral Gables, Florida 33124-6310
305-284-3535         

 

Walter Darby Bannard
(1934 - 2016)

A leading figure in the development of Color Field Painting in the late 1950s and an important American abstract painter, Walter Darby Bannard (better known as Darby Bannard) was committed to color-based and expressionist abstraction for over six decades.

During his undergraduate years at Princeton University, he joined fellow students, the painter Frank Stella and the critic and art historian Michael Fried in conversations that expanded aesthetic definitions and led to an emphasis on opticality as the defining feature of pictorial art. Bannard has continued to explore attributes of color, paint, and surface through innovative methods, striving throughout his career for vital and original expressive means. He has also been an important writer on formalist issues in art, serving as an editor for Artforum and a contributor to Art International. His extensive publications date from the 1960s to the present.  In the early 1990s, Bannard moved to Miami.  He currently serves as professor and head of painting at the University of Miami, Coral Gables.

Bannard was born in 1934 in New Haven, Connecticut.  He attended Phillips Exeter Academy and in 1956 graduated from Princeton University. Bannard, who made drawings and watercolors throughout his youth, was self-taught as a painter. He derived inspiration for his earliest paintings from the art of William Baziotes, Theodoros Stamos, and Clyfford Still. In a 2015 interview with Franklin Einspruch for Artcritical.com, Bannard states, "That's how it is with abstract painting, it just takes you over. I remember looking at one of these little intellectual magazines when I was sixteen and I saw a de Kooning painting, and thought, wow, that's really cool."  By the late 1950s, he abandoned the sensitivity inherent in the expressionistic style, instead creating austere minimal paintings characterized by large areas of contrasting color.

In the next decade, he was one of the first artists to blend artist's materials with commercially produced tinted alkyd resin house paints in a search for greater color options.  In a 2015 Artforum review of his second solo exhibition at Berry Campbell, Phyllis Tuchman discusses these early paintings: "The bands, circles, and rectangles tend to be shiny and reflect light, while the other parts of these canvases are covered with matte paint. Bannard mixed pinks and beiges as well as light blues and greens with lots of white. These colors are still radiant. And the artist's pale palette is as uniquely personal today as it was fifty years ago. You can't even apply a name to his hues."

In 1964, Bannard was included in the landmark exhibition, "Post-Painterly Abstraction," organized by Clement Greenberg and held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. His first solo exhibitions were in 1965, at Kasim Gallery, London; Richard Feigen Gallery, Chicago; and Tibor de Nagy Gallery, New York.  He was also included that year in the Museum of Modern Art's, "The Responsive Eye." In 1968, Bannard received a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship and a National Foundation of the Arts Award.

Around 1970, Bannard's focus shifted to an exploration of the liquid quality of paint. Drawn to the new acrylic mediums that were becoming available, he began working on the floor using thick gel surfaces and color suspended in Magna or polymer mediums.  At the time, he "thought of color as a liquid, flowing over and settling on a roughened surface, changing as it mixed and dried."  His method involved stapling his canvases to slightly raised wooden platforms.  After tightly sizing his canvases, he scraped on colored gel with squeegee-like tools. When the surface was dry, he poured colored polymer over it in layers, allowing the paint to find its place.  He was drawn at the time to close-valued rather than strong colors and often allowed his pale warm grounds to serve as colors in their own right rather than acting as supports for other colors. Karen Wilkin stated in Color as Field (2007): "Bannard probed just how subtle chromatic nuances could be before they became unbroken expanse.  In these pictures, even composition could be reduced to a kind of near-negative, an echo of something no longer there." In the late 1970s, Bannard was instrumental in the retrospective exhibition of the work of Hans Hofmann.  He curated the 1976-77 exhibition and wrote the catalogue that accompanied it.

During a painting workshop in Saskatchewan Canada in 1981, Bannard developed a kind of gel "drawing" on canvas, in which he applied his paint on large sheets of fiberglass.  By the middle of the decade, he had returned to a slower, more subtle system of marking his gel, while also returning to pouring colored polymer.  He also reincorporated expressionist methods in his art.  In 1987, he began his "brush and cut" paintings, consisting of large scale canvases in which he applied transparent tinted gel with large street brooms and industrial floor squeegees to make painted "drawings," featuring vigorous brushwork and three-dimensional illusions. After moving to Miami, he incorporated more color into his large paintings, while producing small mixed-media "landscapes" on paper, inspired by the flat land and water and the lowering sun of the Florida Everglades.  

Recently, Bannard increased the intensity and juxtoposition of color. The more neutral backgrounds of the past have shifted to all-over color. The surfaces of the paintings are flat and three-dimensional all at once: hot pink and fluorescent green geometric shapes appear to float above and protrude from the flat canvas. These circles reference earlier days, but added now are hard-edge trapezoids. Flat areas of color are spiked by splatters of sparkly gels and raised areas of large sweeping brush-work creating a dance across the surface.  Methods and techniques from earlier paintings are combined and used in unison in these dynamic compositions.  In 2015 and 2016, Bannard continued to paint with increase vigor creating large-scale paintings up to thirteen feet wide.   

Throughout his career, Bannard moved between the poles of Expressionism and Color Field Painting, resulting in a body of art that has constantly evolved as the artist forthrightly faced the situations that his art presented, reacting to them with rigor and intuition.

In 1983, Bannard held an Invitational Residency at the National Endowment for the Arts.  In addition to his current position at the University of Miami, he has taught at many art schools, including the School of Visual Art, New York.  Over the course of his career, Bannard has had almost one hundred solo exhibitions and he has been included in an even greater number of group shows.  In 2016, noted art historian, Barbara Rose, curated a major exhibition for Roberto Polo Gallery in Brussels, Belgium entitled, "Post-Painterly Abstraction: Belgium-USA" featuring paintings by sixteen US and Belgian artists including Walter Darby Bannard, Ed Moses and Larry Poons.

Bannard is represented in public collections across the country as well as abroad.  A selection of his museum collections include Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, Ohio; Baltimore Museum, Maryland; Blanton Museum of Art, The University at Texas, Austin; Brooklyn Museum, New York; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Cleveland Museum, Ohio; Dallas Museum of Fine Art, Texas; Dayton Art Institute, Ohio; Edmonton Art Gallery, Alberta, Canada; Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Honolulu Museum, Hawaii; Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana; Kenyon College Art Gallery, Ohio; Larry Aldrich Museum, Ridgefield, Connecticut; Lowe Art Museum, Coral Gables, Florida; McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Montclair Art Museum, New Jersey; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas; Museum of Modern Art, New York; National Gallery of Victoria, Australia; New Jersey State Museum, Trenton; Newark Museum, New Jersey; Portland Art Museum, Oregon; Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey; Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Storm King Art Center, New Windsor, New York; the Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, Massachusetts.

*Biography courtesy of Berry Campbell Gallery  ‌

*Images courtesy of Jacqueline Gopie

 

New Works: UM Graduate Students
Reception: Friday, September 9th – 6pm to 9pm
On view: September 2 – 29, 2016

Location: Wirtz Gallery located inside First National Bank of South Miami
5750 Sunset Drive
South Miami, FL 33143

The University of Miami Department of Art and Art History and the Wirtz Gallery are pleased to present New Works from UM Graduate Students. Works on display include painting, drawing and printmaking. The MFA program is a 60-credit, three-year program resulting in a terminal degree that both prepares students to enter the professional, studio art world and qualifies them for college teaching. The program is highly competitive, with applicants coming from across the country and around the world.

New Works will be on view September 2 – 29, 2016 at the Wirtz Gallery located inside First National Bank of South Miami, 5750 Sunset Dr, South Miami, FL 33143. There will be an opening reception for the artists on Friday, September 9th from 6pm to 9pm. This event will be catered. *Parking is free in the First National Bank lot before 6pm.

Hours are Monday to Thursday, 9:00am to 4:00pm and Friday 9:00am to 6:00pm. For more information about the exhibition or the University of Miami Wynwood Gallery contact Milly Cardoso, Gallery Director and Curator at m.cardoso1@miami.edu. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @umartgalleries.

Images:   Jeannette Stargala, Response 1, Serigraph, Monotype (Main Page) and Karla Kanto, In conversation, Mixed Media on Canvas (Below) 

Sunset Place has commissioned University of Miami graduate art student Izia Lindsay to create a large-scale installation at the Sunset Drive entry plaza. Lindsay, a native of Trinidad, will work during the second half of June and into early July to convert a series of columns into a canvas for abstract landscapes of South Florida’s native wildlife. 

"My art is a reflection of my surroundings and how exquisite I see life to be."-Izia Lindsay

See more at:

http://somimag.com/art-installations-at-sunset-place/

http://www.miaminewtimes.com/arts/miami-students-decorate-sunset-place-with-wildlife-mural-8610680

http://southflorida.citybizlist.com/article/360197/summer-at-the-shops-farmers-market-family-friendly-events-and-new-art-installations-headline-calendar-of-summer-programs-at-sunset-place#sthash.2h24RLbz.dpuf

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/south-miami/article85540497.html

 

Miami is the city of the 21st century. It is home to five art museums, two major universities, the nation's largest community college system, an opera company, a ballet company, a symphony orchestra, an internationally renowned film festival and book fair, and it is the headquarters of the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts. Miami is also home to one of the most successful Art in Public Places programs, two large community art groups that offer studio space and support services to artists, eight non-commercial exhibition spaces, a dozen first class commercial art galleries representing national as well as Florida artists, an active Public Library art exhibition series and two visiting artist/critic lecture series. In addition, the city supports professional theater, a full schedule of major musical concerts, a world class zoo, and NHL, NFL, NBA franchises and major league baseball, not to mention a full range of high quality athletic programs at the the University itself.

museums and galleries

The Lowe Museum (University of Miami)

Museum of Contemporary Art (North Miami)

Bass Museum of Art (Miami Beach)

The Frost Art Museum (Florida International University)

Miami Art Museum

Locust Projects

Dorsch Gallery

Bernice Steinbaum Gallery

Barbara Gillman Gallery

art fairs

Art Basel Miami Beach

Art Miami

Beaux Arts Festival

miami art links

Miami Art Exchange
An independent website created by local artists and galleries to the promote visual art in the Maimi area. The site includes show announcements, reviews, and articles about local events and exhibitions.

Wynwood Art District
A website about this popular art district's venues and events. The Wynwood Art District is an association of art institutions, museums, galleries, collections, studios, and alternative art spaces in the Wynwood Area in Miami, Florida. They promote the visual arts that take place in the district.

Miami Design District 
A website about this popular district's venues and events. The Design District is close to Wynwood and in addition to art galleries includes furniture and interior design stores and collections.

University of Miami Calendar

University of Miami Arts & Culture Website

art blogs

Franklin Einspruch's Journal

Art Lurker

artist studio opportunities

Art Center South Florida

Art South of Homestead