Forum Gallery announces Couplings, an exhibition about symbiotic relationships and connections between pairs of people, objects, and ideas. The exhibition, comprised of paintings, works on paper and sculpture, presents two exemplary works by each of eleven artists. Couplings is on view from Friday, June 24 through Saturday, September 17, 2022.
William Beckman is renowned for his depictions of man and woman standing side-by-side, but never touching, drawn from the Artist’s self-portrait and the image of his partner, both dressed in overcoats, a symbol of survival for the Artist. Continuing with his subject, Couplings presents a new oil painting and the related charcoal drawing, fresh from the studio, each monumental in scale and presence.
In his lifetime, the artist Gregory Gillespie shared an artistic and personal friendship with William Beckman. Synergistic of Beckman’s subject, the exhibition presents a pair of paintings by Gillespie, a self-portrait and portrait of the Artist’s wife, connected in their human-scale and stylistic approach, yet rendered independent in art.
Dramatic oil paintings of brides enveloped in sheer veils of billowing fabric by Steven Assael and charcoal drawings of heroic scale by Clio Newton depicting figures in Renaissance-style bucolic landscapes explore the psychology of the female experience, while artists Chaim Gross, Paul Fenniak, and Raphael Soyer consider human interdependence in two-figure compositions rendered in oil and bronze in the Artists’ distinctive styles.
Chilean-born Claudio Bravo and Guillermo Muñoz Vera create transcendent realist oil paintings combining the duality of present and past, suggestive of rich stories to be told. A figurative painting by Bravo suggests an intimate relationship between a male figure very much in the present with a female figure of ghostly presence, while a second magnificent oil painting by the twentieth-century realist master honors the tradition and fragility of the North African shepherding and agrarian cultures with a sumptuous composition of a pair of animal skins. Simultaneously thought-provoking and visually arresting, paintings by Muñoz Vera examine the dichotomies of globalism and of contemporary consumer culture.
Michael C. Thorpe, fresh to the gallery, has won fast notoriety for his quilts that tell stories of the Artist’s experience as a bi-racial man in America. Text collages created this year by Thorpe harness the power of the written word to represent an absent figure and provoke conversations about race with humor and wit. Language lends meaning too in the art of Alan Magee, whereby the titles given to works of art serve to personify the objects featured in the meticulous paintings for which the Artist is renowned. Presented in Couplings are works featuring pairs of paintbrushes and river stones, composed as intimate partners, codependent in their existence as suggested by the titles Nocturne and The Long Distance Friendships.