Comings and Goings
Just as summer is winding down, several of the area's best exhibits are coming to a close: most notably, the Hirshhorn's Wolfgang Tillmans exhibit. Even if this month's "Comings and Goings" is heavy on the "Goings," art lovers still have a lot to celebrate. More on a textile exhibit, a few installations and several new photography shows after the jump.
Dark and depressing as they may be, Mary Chiaramonte's heavily lacquered paintings take on some of the most intimate moments of the human experience in a beautiful way. In "Murmur," Chiaramonte's solo show at Nevin Kelly Gallery, the paintings trap each subject in a box to symbolize the all-too-human feeling of trying to break free from tough situations. It runs from Aug. 1 until Sept. 2. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Aug.
As new art movements developed in Vienna, Austria, between 1897 and 1932, a common trend emerged of artists blurring the boundary between high art and craft. The Textile Museum explores this phenomenon in a small show of brightly colored fabric samples and fabric-covered objects. "Textiles of Klimt's Vienna" runs from August 3 until Jan. 6.
In the Age of the iPod, form and function are nearly indistinguishable. Project 4's August exhibit pushes back against this trend with "Useless," an exhibition that celebrates purpose-less objects and unusable prototypes. From Aug. 3 to Sept. 8, look for a make-up line made out of crude oil, a chair that balloons into an overweight figure and wallpaper that fails to fold out into seats (as it's supposed to). (Reception: 6-8:30 p.m. Friday, August 3)
For "Introductions 3," Irvine Contemporary asked a panel of art collectors to select the best candidates from a nation-wide pool of 250 recent art-school grads. Of the 12 that made the cut, I'm most looking forward to Maura Q. Brewer's origami-like sculptures using folded-and-ironed men's shirts and Amy Chan's paintings of "new ecosystems" forged by urban environments. The exhibit opens with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. on August 11.
Eerie, ethereal works make up "Space, Place and Time," an exhibition of photographs by Joanna Knox, Shannon Chester and Phil Nesmith at Mount Rainier's H & F Fine Arts. Each of these artists captures images of the places we call home. Nesmith, a former U.S. Army paratrooper, took pictures of soldiers in Iraq and developed them using ferrotype, a technique that dates back to Civil War photography. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Friday, August 10)
A stint in the Army helped perfect Charlie Gaynor's photography skills. After leaving the University of Kansas with a degree in fine art, Gaynor served as as as General Creighton Abrams's personal photographer during the Vietnam War. He's cycled through a few more careers since then -- he's now a local realtor -- but as this Long View Gallery exhibition shows, the man still has a way with the lens. (Reception: 6-8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11)
Photographers get yet another showcase in "Sub-text," a group show at Randall Scott Gallery from August 9 until Sept. 8. Look for performance-based works, manufactured still-lifes and raw portraits. (Reception: 6-9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11)
Reception of the Month
Environmentalism gets the exhibition treatment in Flashpoint's "Earth on Stone on Earth is Naturally So," which runs from Aug. 4 through Aug. 31. The gallery goes green for this installation, comprising planted installations and landscapes that deal with the natural world and our relationship to it. Video and audio works remind us of the natural daily rhythms of life, while real, live birds flitting about celebrate the creatures of the natural world.
Want to kick eco up a notch? After the usual art-perusing, snack-nibbling reception at 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 4, check out an 8 p.m. screening of "Re-Visiting Father and the Source Family," a documentary about the rise and fall of an American commune that strove for sustainability in the '50s, '60s and '70s. "The gallery sets up the opportunity to explore a spiritual relationship with nature," said Karl Krause, lead artist on the project. "The documentary focuses on a collective that sought out the same thing."
This month's saddest departure is the Hirshhorn's Wolfgang Tillmans exhibit. In this wild installation, the artist gives us angsty snapshots of club kids, still lifes of forgotten objects and places and Technicolor photographs of gold coins. Somehow, they blend together seamlessly. Catch it before it closes on Aug. 12.
A small exhibition of Eugene Boudin's pretty landscapes closes on August 5, as does a family-friendly show at Mount Vernon about George Washington's relationship with the Marquis de Lafayette. [UPDATE, 8/3: The National Gallery has extended the run of the Boudin exhibition until Sept. 3.]
Monica Tinker's ever-evolving installation at Hillyer Art Space closes on Aug. 30. One of our interns, Stephanie Garcia, got the chance to check in with Tinker at the gallery last month.
In Baltimore, "Joseph Grigely: St. Cecilia," a video work that was much loved by The Post's Blake Gopnik, closes Aug. 18. The Walters Museum's exhibition of work by the Gee's Bend quilters closes on Aug. 26.
Finally, "Reinventing the Globe" and "Shakespeare in American Life" -- two vestiges of the Shakespeare in Washington Festival -- shut their doors this month. "Reinventing the Globe" continues until Aug. 27; "Shakespeare in American Life" closes on Aug. 18. UPDATE: "Reinventing the Globe" has been extended until Oct. 8.
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