David Gallagher is a ceramic artist from Philadelphia who completed his undergraduate work at the Tyler School of Art-Temple University. He is currently pursuing his Masters of Fine Arts at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas.
Research Statement In our current epoch of ever more rapid invention it becomes paramount to analyze our relationships to the technology we produce. Systems are created on the foundations of existing technology and are tied to the accepted modes of history and the present. These technologies mediate our experiences with the physical world. We no longer have hundreds of years to determine appropriate uses for the technology we create. In many cases this time frame can be compressed to months or even weeks, with the only criteria for its evaluation being its novelty. These tools we create enter our perception with singularity of purpose, and yet cause repercussions though out our whole cultural existence.
The primary focus of my artistic practice is the systems we create to manage our society. I am constantly investigating our understanding of the physical and psychological environments we construct. Humanity is driven to invent; to create tools that aid in the managing of society’s existence. Our instinctual proclivity to transcend what exists, to constantly refine and redefine our own existence is the central idea that drives my research. My work is a simulation and examination of systems that function within the constructs of social environments. These systems provide a framework for the investigation of the possibilities of context, specific iterations of conventional relationships.
Kwok-Pong ‘Bobby’ Tso: From the ground up, Industrial landscape Series, 2011, White earthenware, cone 4 oxidation, sanded surface, additional details from wood, hobby paper and sand, Metal hanging system, H 8, W 28, D 11
“It seems like I’m always trapped in a style beyond a heterogeneous appearance of my work. It isn’t bad advertising, but if you really want to feel a connection with my works, you need to be patient and to look closely to more than twenty images. And perhaps contrary to my statement, my style wouldn’t be so difficult understand. Everywhere there is a sort of a struggle between fantasy and at least one kind of realism. I also admit that the manner is as important as the idea itself. Some say that the substance of a style is nowadays just a literary, philosophical concern - mostly when it has something to do with the more popular social involvement. I think that someone’s style doesn’t have to be interconnected with anything social and one can always choose to seek for inspiration in its inner self.
As far as I can say at this moment, my experience with ceramics has two aspects (or constraints). First is the period of apprenticeship, which numbers the last year of my high-school and the years in the University of Arts and Design in Cluj. The other one is my collaboration with Wagner Porcelains. If high-school was rather a period of independence - ceramics was a very late decision. The academic years were a continuous fight with a conservatory approach and, sometimes more frustrating, with the lack of technical possibilities. With Wagner, the limitations went only in the commercial direction. Despite all of this, I totally agree with (some) constraints, which can provide a wide range of surprising solutions.
My porcelain works have a high decorative touch, more in the sense of fashion with all its aspects. Collages and technical varieties are also present in my work, replacing the limitation of the material. With Wagner I only work with white porcelain, though adding my pictures. I am not trying to follow any precise trend, nor Romanian or International; I am only constantly paying attention to everything interesting and meaningful around me.” Bogdan Teodorescu
The Painting Center is pleased to announce the opening of The Liberated Line, an exhibition of recent work by Joe Caroff. He was attracted to the creative freedom possible in book jacket design, and worked with many publishers. His first jacket design was for Norman Mailer’s The Naked and The Dead. His first film poster was for West Side Story. In 1963, Joseph Caroff designed the iconic 007 logo for United Artists and launched a long and distinguished graphic design career. When he observed the widening grasp of the computer and its inevitable descent into homogeneity in graphic design, Caroff sold his commercial art studio and began to paint. In his current work, the spontaneity and control that describe his world, coupled with the urge to manipulate form away from surface eventually matured in works where the flow of linear gesture continues on in independent space. In this thrust to “escape the canvas” he has consistently sought three-dimensional expression that challenges the canvas without abandoning its critical relationship. In his Terni series of 1986, three abstract shapes were produced with overlapping wooden sheets extending beyond the canvas. In the Iconic Metaphor series of 1990, he created works on 30 x 30 inch hollow core wood panels using leather, heavy paper and wood to construct illusionistic figures.
For the past 30 years he has devoted himself to painting with insight and originality in response to, and frequently in reaction to the fashion of various endeavors currently popular. His interest in perception - both his own and that of the audience to the juxtaposition of flatness and three- dimensionality, has been a major focus; most recently in the works currently exhibited at The Painting Center. These reflect his previous investigations yet are pushing his thoughts forward, sparking ideas that he seeks to pursue.
Caroff’s color is either subdued or theatrical depending upon its support of his linear choreography. It is either in complete contrast to the ground, or echoes one or other of the colors behind it. In these paintings, the lyrical quality of the line expresses the joy of liberation, declaring itself free of the gravity of the canvas. In pulling the line away from the surface, and turning it into a three-dimensional entity, another critical linear element follows: shadows that link the line back to its source on the surface and provide a bridge between the two. These are not airbrushed shadows as can be seen in some James Harvard paintings. These shadows are real and are integral to the final composition.
Caroff has never been complacent. He is always inventing. In August, he turned 90.