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Chris Ashley and Alan Disparte
"New Works"
David Cunningham Projects
San Francisco, California
August 7th - September 13th, 2008

Review by Dale Tegman
Alan Disparte - Sapphire Brew

"Sapphire Brew", acrylic on wood panel, 60" x 60", 2008

      The new work of Chris Ashley and Alan Disparte would appear to be an unlikely pairing for a show.

      Disparte layers acrylics on wood panels, creating large cell animation style paintings. He names them ("Swelter", "Helioscope", "Vinedresser") like a bill of rock bands. They aren't exactly without subjects: one recognizes melting snow, a dragon, a host of chevron. Each depicts a space where physics behave as they might in liquid.

     Ashley's work reproduces at 8.5" x 11" on ink jet paper. That's because his medium is HTML, the markup language web pages are assembled from. He creates new work every day, confessional elements of his art often succumbing to a workmanlike goal, like his month long meditation on Modern Artists, "After". Every piece is circumscribed by the possibilities and limitations of the pixel more

"Art of Democracy: War and Empire"
Meridian Gallery
San Francisco, California
September 4th - November 4th, 2008

Review by James L. Weaver, MFA
Gee Vaucher - Oh America

Oh America, 2006, digital print
© Gee Vaucher
Courtesy of the artist and Jack Hanley Gallery

      History frequently (with increased frequency of late) proves to us that not one Guernica painting, nor a million Guernica-type paintings, will ever have the slightest impact on preventing or ending a war. Never has, never will. Realize too, that nothing short of a peaceful street demonstration or protest ever gets footage on the evening news. This might make you wonder why responsible curators spend so much time and energy organizing exhibitions such as the current one at Meridian Gallery. Certainly none of us need to see artist images of yet more proof of man's inhumanity toward man that the news media might have missed, even if those images might include a visual description of a word that has more recently crept into our vocabulary--like waterboarding. If we consider ourselves to be sane and caring people completely abhorrent to war, why are we attracted to shows like this? Is it possible that we look forward to seeing how far a particular artist, whose normal subject matter is miles removed from the horrors of war, will "testify" through his/her chosen medium? Yes, that's a part of it. read more

New Paintings by Yisrael K. Feldsott
Paul Mahder Gallery
San Francisco, California
August 21st - October 5th, 2008

Review by James L. Weaver, MFA
Yisrael K. Feldsott - Untitled Painting with Bird

"Untitled Painting with Bird", 2008, mixed media on board
© Yisrael K. Feldsott
Courtesy of the artist and Paul Mahder Gallery

      Once a person decides to take more than a passing interest in a culture quite different from their own, that person's philosophy and values are likely to be changed forever--often for the better. At age 24, Chicago-born artist Yisrael K. Feldsott decided to begin his extensive travels through Central and South America. His most recent works, currently on exhibition at the personable and upscale Paul Mahder Gallery, provide us with a visual pulse of Feldsott's response to the traditions, folklore, and daily events he observed and encountered in this new culture. His exhibition consists of oil paintings on wood panels and mixed media on paper. read more