Comings and Goings
Welcome to July -- when the exhibit schedule slows. way. down. Unlike the last few action-packed months, this one's full of small-scale shows. A tribute to Frida Kahlo, an evolving installation and two non-juried shows of emerging artists follow after the jump.
A National Museum of Women in the Arts exhibition sets out to prove that there's more to Frida Kahlo than the likenesses that adorn contemporary purses, coasters and t-shirts. The exhibit celebrates the 100th birthday of the oft-imitated Mexican artist by showing personal letters and photographs. As part of the celebration, the museum offers free admission on July 8.
For "Academy 2007," Conner Contemporary hand-picked local MFA grads for a group show. Several galleries host summer shows with recent grads, but last year, Conner Contemporary's was my favorite of the bunch. It offered the widest variety of art-making styles. (Reception: 6-8 p.m. Friday, July 6)
Monica Tinker combines disparate elements like steel, concrete, rope, encaustic, plastic in "Out of b[Order]," her installation at Hillyer Art Space. Over the next two months, Tinker will adjust the show on a weekly basis by rearranging her work in new contexts. (Reception: 6-8 p.m. Friday, July 6)
The D.C. Art Center's "Wall Mountables" is one of my favorite annual shows. A few days before the exhibit opens, artists stake their claims to 2-foot-square pieces of wall at the DCAC. As long as a piece fits in the square and can be mounted to the wall, it's fair game. The resulting exhibit is packed full to the brim with photographs, paintings, drawings, but the three-dimensional, mixed-media works are most interesting. (Reception: 7-9 p.m. Friday, July 20)
"My Space on 7th," another non-juried show, takes place at Touchstone this month. In just two days, artists snapped up the 76 22-square-feet spots. Now that the spaces are saved, the artists can display whatever they like. (Receptions: 6-8:30 p.m. Friday, July 13 and 4-6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 4)
Martin Slater's straightforward charcoal drawings, on view in "Stories of the Body" at Bethesda's Creative Partners Gallery, are technically flawless -- like what I tried to do in drawing class, but never accomplished. Expect simple, sensual depictions of the female form. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday, July 13)
Simple black lines are the only thing connecting the two artists in this month's Gallery Neptune exhibit. Mark Coburn, one of the artists in "Soul Tracers," twists wire into sculptures of faces, animals and other recognizable creatures. Gallery founder Elyse Harrison, meanwhile, presents her paintings of outline figures over patchwork-colored canvasses. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday, July 13)
Maria-Lana Queen's color-saturated canvasses recall other local, nonrepresentational artists like Sondra Arkin. Her solo show at Parish Gallery, "Painted Diary II," includes mixed-media works that reflect her sadness over the sudden death of her brother. (Reception: 6 -8 p.m. Friday, July 13)
Reception of the Month
Okay, so let me see if I've got this straight: Performance artist Stephan Schulz walks around in a special suit that's covered with movement-tracking technology. His movements -- which are influenced by the passersby he encounters on his travels -- are recorded and propel the rotation of a nearby florescent light installation.
Want to see the performance in action? Check it out at 5:30 in Dupont Circle on Wednesday, July 11, or at 5:30 near the Goethe Institute on Thursday, July 12. The Goethe Institut performance is a better bet; it's followed by a (hopefully) demystifying artist lecture at 6:30.
This performance is all part of the a Meat Market exhibit featuring Schulz's work. The exhibit, which will feature video of his Washington adventures and a light display, opens with a 6 p.m. reception on Friday, July 13. The work of local artist Reuben Breslar is also featured.
The Bethesda Painting Awards competition stirred some controversy this year with its choice of winners. See what the fuss is about before the Fraser Gallery exhibit of the finalists closes on July 7. Shutting its doors the following day is "Red," the Textile Museum's salute to the lusty color.
"Italian Women Artists From Renaissance to Baroque," an exhibit full of rich colors and angsty passions, closes July 15.
"From the Ground Up: The Renwick Craft Invitational" closes up on July 22.
July 29 marks the end of the road for the Corcoran's massive "Modernism" show, Pae White and Virgil Marti's installation in the Hirshhorn lobby and "Bush Leaguers," a show of editorial cartoons at the Katzen.
An Irvine Contemporary exhibition of performative and portrait photography closes on
June 30 Aug. 4.
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