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I Cast To Earth A Seed Group Show





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Saturday, 6 January 2024 to Saturday, 10 February 2024
Saturday, 6 January 2024 - 5:00pm

Galleri Urbane is pleased to present I Cast To Earth a Seed, a group exhibition of five painters. These are not the floral still-lives or bowls of fruit of Dutch interiors or Italian natura morta. Most are not composed from observation, but from photographs or other sources of imagery (or imagination). In their myriad forms, they encapsulate the natural and unnatural. The plant and seed traverse all subject matter. What can they teach us about contemporary life, the banality of living through crisis, the province of hope? The artists of / Cast To Earth a Seed know that ultimately, this is the beginning. And in the end. And both simultaneously. 

"I try to invent flowers that don't exist," Bertrand Fournier says. Starting on a tablet, he composes shapes. In his fantastical, playful compositions, bright, vibrant colors and patterns pop. Though inexistent and imaginary, they nonetheless tilt universal, for "the least touch of color we put in a painting reminds us of a flower," the artist says. A slim, single layer of paint enhances the two-dimensionality of the image and the purity of color-the pinks, blacks, yellows. Yet the effect is immersive.

 An alchemy underlies Lori Larusso's flowers, which have their own currency. The artist reduces found images to values, then simplifies them into shapes. The image is "reduced-not all the shapes, but some," she says. In that subtraction, she enters the uncanny valley, where the subject/object can become at once more "real" and yet more "fake." Her work with shadows-so present they become their own actors in the paintings-and flatness underscores the simultaneous un- and hyper-reality. Formal painterly qualities at the fore-the way light hits a glass or a stem slips between shades when in water-remain to be read on the surface, challenging the viewer to see them as flower paintings-nothing more, nothing less.

 "You're looking at a staging, at a window, at a world," Robert Minervini says. The artist has been thinking about botanical painting as much as a trope in Western painting as a marker of domesticity and internal life. With the pandemic, spending time inside, he found a new focus on internal life emerged: the voyeuristic perspective of early American or Dutch landscape painting, where the viewer regards the scene, feels fitting. Though here we encounter urban gardens, with a sun or moon that sits eerily above the horizon and airbrushed effects of light and color that suggest contemporaneity and dystopic otherworldliness at once. Tension between the ordinary and otherworldly evokes what Minervini calls "the banality of the abnormal": A still-life that's like the eye of a storm (perhaps ours), quiet and surreal. In Puerto Rico, there is only one season, one general pattern of weather and climate. 

"I'm thinking about Puerto Rico most of the time when I'm working with this subject. And what it means to have a garden," Juan Alberto Negroni says. In his highly symmetrical floral compositions-works that lie between painting and drawing-he enters the realm of fantasy, recreating a place where "the greens are luscious; the reds are insane." These are not specific flowers, but flowers of yearning and imagination. "Here [in Texas], I have a weeping willow in my backyard, not a mango tree," the artist says. How, then, does that play into nostalgia? The eloquent grid harkens to the architectural structures in his typical home in Puerto Rico. A flatness that comes from his printmaking background also speaks to his native land and its artistic legacy. Sometimes the seed cast to earth is the seed of where we're from.

Nothing speaks directly of flowers in the works of Michelle Wasson. Not the haunting haziness. Not the rich, soft, subdued hues. Nor the shapes like elongated specters. Yet they telegraph with a mysterious efficacy. The works, lush and layered, evoke dualities. They contain a mystic and haptic quality. And for all the softness or vigor- the artist is steeped in fertility symbols and warrior goddesses-there exists a memento mori element, for each flower bears a hint of its own demise, "hidden in the cycle of life and death," the artist says. The monochromatism encourages a mood that corresponds with inner life-a meditative space-while the semi-abstraction untethers the work from a singular view and lends mystery and open-endedness to interpretation. We are "going to a place that's not here in this world, that's quieter, safer," Wasson says. A haven. An alternate world without limitations.

Curator :

Venue ( Address ): 

2277 MONITOR ST. Dallas TX 75207

Other events from Galleri Urbane Dallas

New Exhibition Opening: Taking Liberties, Jason Willaford
Girls and Horses: solo exhibition by Meghan Borah
I Cast To Earth A Seed Group Show
01/06/2024 to 02/10/2024
The Process of Seeing Group Exhibition
11/18/2023 to 12/30/2023



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