May Issue of Aeqai Online

May 24th, 2016  |  Published in Announcements

The May issue of Aeqai has just posted, and it’s another very large issue, filled with reviews, profiles/interviews, tributes to arts leaders, and our small literary section. We begin with Karen Chambers’ admirable review of the exhibtion “Unraveled” , at The Contemporary Arts Center, guest curated by Kate Bonansinga, Director of the School of Art at UC/DAAP. It’s a stunning show filled with philosophical underpinnings. Matt Metzger’s astute look at former Cincinnatian Tom Marioni’s new figurative work at Carl Solway Gallery shows us an artist who’s reinvented himself and his work many times in his distinguished career. Hannah Leow reviews a truly exciting and moving installation by Susan Byrnes at Kennedy Heights Art Center, where Byrnes, who also writes for Aeqai, was artist-in-residence for the past several months. Fran Watson, who teaches abstract painting, amongst her many talents, reviews a large show of abstraction at The Carnegie, curated by the always fascinating Matt Distel; the show is filled with different types of abstraction and the strategies these artists use to achieve their goals. And Jonathan Kamholtz takes a long look at the Cincinnati Art Museum’s tribute to Carl Solway/Carl Solway Gallery exhibition on display there for several months.

Aeqai also asked several area art collectors and curators to write short, anecdotal pieces about their relationships with Carl Solway as a dealer/teacher; those include pieces by David Reichert, a former Trustee of both The Contemporary Arts Center and The Cincinnati Art Museum and a long-term art collector; Kevin Ott, also a current Trustee of both The Art Museum and Contemporary Arts Center, gives us his very special sense of Solway; Cal Kowal, who’s curated dozens of photography shows over the years at Solway Gallery, gives his account, and I offer my own, having had Carl as my guide/guru in decades of my own art collecting. We hope that these tributes to Carl Solway and his gallery give our readers some sense of Carl’s importance to individual collectors, as well as to the region in a more general sense. It’s nearly impossible to imagine what Cincinnati would have been like, visually, without Carl Solway Gallery, whose importance will deserves this museum exhibition.

And since The Weston Gallery at The Aronoff Center is also celebrating its 20th anniversary year, its living patron/founder, Alice Weston, was honored by a gala there in early May, and I offer my own tribute to her, whose importance as a visual artist may be less acknowledged than it should be; Weston’s collecting, her own art making, and her role as patron all wrap around each other. The art that she collected with her late husband Harris is superb, and it’s been bequeathed to the Cincinnati Art Museum. The Westons helped to insist that the Aronoff include a visual arts component, which became The Weston Gallery.

Other reviews this month include Dan Burr’s very thoughtful column on the Ed Wolfley retrospective at Clifton Cultural Arts Center; Wolfely long taught at UC/DAAP, and Burr both documents his development as an artist and persuades us of Wolfley’s importance as such. Laura Sams reviews a just-opened show at Wash Park Art, an exhibiton of nudes made by some of Greater Cincinnati’s most prominent artists working in the figurative tradition (the show includes work by Aeqai’s critic Marlene Steele). Sams gives the exhibition lots of art historical references, reminding us that images of the human form are as old as art itself. Katie Dreyer returns this month with an astute and sometimes funny look at a recent performance called CAMPO at Contemporary Arts Center; kudos to CAC performance art curator Drew Klein for the ongoing excellence and versatility of the performances he’s brought to us this year; this performance is the last of this season. Marlene Steele takes a look at new acquisitions at The Skirball Museum at Hebrew Union College, which we welcome into the mainstream of the visual arts in our region; we have asked its Director, Abby Schwartz, to write a kind of history of the museum itself and what it’s been like pulling various pieces together, including the recent acquisition of a major collection of Judaica which will enhance the collections enormously. Schwartz’s feature runs in this issue, back -to-back with Steele’s review of recent acquisitions in the museum. And Aeqai’s fashion critic, Jenny Perusek, reviews the annual DAAP fashion show, which takes place at the end of each academic year, and reminds us of the national renown that the UC Dept . of fashion design has and deserves.

Our profiles/interviews this month includes design critic Tim Karoleff’s conversation with area designer Stephen Bowen; this piece is the first in a series that Karoleff is writing for Aeqai on the topic “what is design”?, as Aeqai sees design as central to so much contemporary life and culture. Chelsea Borgman’s profile/interview of young area painter Cody Gunningham is fascinating, and also shows us how different younger artists approach the making and marketing of their work. Laura Hobson continues her series of profiles of small area institutions/museums/nonprofits; her piece this month looks at The Betts House in the West End, what it is, how its run, and the kinds of programming it offers. Kent Krughs’s photo folio this month offers us a look at the photographic work of Anna Ream.

Our out of town offerings this month are, as always, exciting. Our Chicago correspondent, Cynthia Kukla, returns with an enthusiastic review of work by Kerry James Marshall at The Art Institute of Chicago, and the show will travel to both New York and Chicago, as well. Jack Wood offers two reviews from Texas; he looks at new work by Dan Heskamp at The Weil Gallery on the campus of Texas A and M in Corpus Christi, as well as that of Ryan O’Malley at Flatbed Press Gallery in Austin. Look forward to columns by Wood monthly in future Aeqais, too. And Houston correspondent Joelle Jameson returns with another of her interdisciplinary reviews, reviewing mainly movement and its implications socially as well as aesthetically , in a show called “The School of Movement of the Technicolor People”. Jameson definitely understands the interrelationships amongst various types/modalities of contemporary art and how often it crosses boundaries into all types of art forms.

Aeqai Media and Film critic Steven Havira writes about the radically changing face of television, just as he did with films a couple of months ago: the future of television watching is in enormous flux, which he documents and analyzes. Both Louis Z. Bickett of Lexington and our own Maxwell Redder offer three new poems apiece for our readers, and Jane Durrell reviews a book about members of the Conan family in England, one of whom founded the magazine Punch, and another of whom created the character Sherlock Holmes. I offer three book reviews myself: Tender, by Belinda McKeon; The North Water, by Ian McGuire; and David Means’ Hystopia. We always appreciate your comments (and your donations!….remember, Aeqai is a nonprofit, so any donations are tax-deductible). We’ll be back in June, and then we just offer one summer issue, July/August, before we return on a montly basis in September. And we hope that our May issue stimulates you.

–Daniel Brown, Editor,

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