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The Sound of Abstract Expressionism: “Ted Ramsay: Visual Symphony Series” at WSG Gallery

Fri, 02/28/2020 - 10:15am by christopherporter

Ted Ramsey, three paintings from his Visual Symphony Series

Three acrylic paintings from Ted Ramsay's Visual Symphony Series (left to right): Johann Strauss II - "Thunder and Lightning," Mozart - "Sinfonia Concertante" K349 and "Symphony 40 in G minor" K 550, and Tchaikovsky - "Festival Overture 1812" op. 49. Images courtesy of WSG Gallery.

Ted Ramsay, a professor emeritus at the University of Michigan’s School of Art and Design, has long made expressionism in its many guises the focus of his painting. His last WSG exhibit, March 2013’s Spatial Narratives in Paint, was marked by expressive figuration, which Ramsay explained as, "In my figure paintings I strive for an aura of magic and mystery tempered with a subjective, but believable dose of reality." I wrote at that time that Ramsay’s “whose homage to silence is so complete, you can almost hear a pin drop.”

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Inspiration, Aspiration, Expertise: “Gerome Kamrowski: Ann Arbor’s Own Surrealist” at The Michigan Art Gallery

Wed, 12/18/2019 - 11:00am by christopherporter

Gerome Kamrowski in his backyard with his sculptures

Gerome Kamrowski in his backyard with his sculptures; first published in black and white in The Ann Arbor News, September 4, 1993. Photo by Photographer: D. A. Biermann.

I only met Gerome Kamrowski once. He granted The Ann Arbor News a 1993 interview for the paper’s annual old school “M-Edition,” a special start-of-the-school-year section.

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A Place to Resist Apathy: “Whose Streets? Our Streets! New York City 1980-2000” at Lane Hall Gallery

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 2:30pm by christopherporter

Sylvia Plachy, Graffiti Under the Williamsburg Bridge, black and white photograph]

Sylvia Plachy, Graffiti Under the Williamsburg Bridge, black and white photograph.

Big town civil disobedience meets big-time photojournalism in Whose Streets? Our Streets! New York City 1980-2000 at the University of Michigan Women’s Studies Lane Hall Gallery.

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The Vietnam War and Modern Memory: Matthew Provoast’s “Dear Grandpaw” at the Argus Museum

Mon, 07/22/2019 - 10:30am by christopherporter

Matthew Provoast's Right in the Middle of All the Smoke

Matthew Provoast, Right in the Middle of All the Smoke, encaustic photo collage.

Matthew Provoast’s Dear Grandpaw at the Argus Museum is part family history, part archival photojournalism -- and all viscerally imaginative ground-level art about of one of the most traumatic events in America’s 20th century.

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The Music of Life: “Fractured History: A Solo Exhibit by Aaron Dworkin” at Ann Arbor Art Center

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 7:15am by christopherporter

Aaron Dworkin's Train Station

Train Station by Aaron Dworkin

Aaron Dworkin's Fractured History exhibition is art in the key of life. His 11 artworks in the Ann Arbor Art Center’s entry-level gallery gives us a revealing glimpse of this authentic Michigan institution as well as his view of the world around us.

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Arrested Motion: “Helen Gotlib: Secret Beaches” at WSG Gallery

Mon, 05/20/2019 - 12:30pm by christopherporter

Helen Gotlib, Sea Ranch Flower IV painting detail

Helen Gotlib, Sea Ranch Flower IV (detail), woodblock print, intaglio print, acrylic paint, palladium leaf.

Ann Arbor printmaker Helen Gotlib is a master of the art of slow motion. It’s there in plain sight in her Secret Beaches exhibit at the WSG Gallery.

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Everything flows at Argus Museum's photography exhibit “Water Is Life”

Mon, 04/01/2019 - 12:00pm by christopherporter

Beutler's photo Fogged In

Frederick J. Beutler's Fogged In

Leave it to a museum in a city nestled in a state surrounded in three directions by water to appreciate that Water Is Life. For water is most definitely the topic in display in this expansive photographic exhibit winding its way through the Washtenaw County Historical Society's Argus Museum gallery space.

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Representation, Now: “Art Now 2019: Painting” at Ann Arbor Art Center

Wed, 03/06/2019 - 12:30pm by christopherporter

Judith Bemis' painting Waiting for His Grace

Judith Bemis, Waiting for His Grace, oil on canvas, 60" x 48". Roula David and Judith Bemis at the opening night for Ann Arbor Art Center's “Art Now 2019: Painting” exhibit. Images courtesy Ann Arbor Art Center.

Continuing with the fifth installation of its semi-annual exhibition themes, the Ann Arbor Art Center’s Art Now 2019: Painting illustrates the vitality of this perennial art form in our contemporary arts.

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Recombinant Tales: Ruth Crowe’s “Storytelling with Photo Infusion and Encaustic” at Gifts of Art

Mon, 02/18/2019 - 11:45am by christopherporter

Ruth Crowe, Storytelling images

Ruth Crowe, clockwise from upper left: Notorious RBG, photo encaustic/image fusion; A Different Kind of Cowboy, encaustic/image fusion; Let's Ride Sister - Put the Fun Between Your Legs, encaustic/image transfer/plaster.

Taken separately, photo fusion and encaustic are interestingly differing forms of art. Taken together, they reflect local artist Ruth Crowe’s wry multimedia Storytelling with Photo Fusion and Encaustic exhibit at the Gifts of Art Gallery in the University of Michigan Hospital main corridor.

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Kerrytown Concert House’s “Winter Meditation” offers austere ambiance from Kirsten Lund, Ann and Fred Ringia

Wed, 01/30/2019 - 9:00am by christopherporter

Kirsten Lund's Untitled Silver Sequins

Kirsten Lund, Untitled (Silver Sequins)

It may initially seem surprising that winter can inspire artists. One would think the nippy climate would discourage creativity.