Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Art review: Get your 'art fix' before Basel bash

By Katie Deits

Art Basel opens in Miami Beach next Wednesday, and the buzz has already begun to build.

It’s not just about the celebrated international art show. It’s about the people that come from all over the world to see it, to be seen, to collect art, to discover the latest greatest “hot” artist, to party, party, party. It’s also about all the other events, gallery and museum openings that surround Art Basel. (Check out this blog next week, as I'll cover the events, visit MOCA and search out trends and the next art stars.)

In the meantime, you can get your art "fix" at several interesting shows in Palm Beach and Broward counties:

Fused glass: Don’t miss Betty Wilson’s exhibit of fused glass (through Dec. 23) at Mary Woerner Fine Arts, located at 6107 S. Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach. Wilson, who is also a ceramist, views glass as an extension of sculpture.

“I love the exciting interplay of light and color,” she said. “My fused glass faces give off so much energy that people say they make them smile.”

She has also incorporated fused glass into tables and furniture. A percentage of sales from Betty Wilson’s work will be given to the South Florida chapter of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. For more information, call (561) 493-4160.

ArtServe: The Holiday Member Showcase and sale at ArtServe in Fort Lauderdale runs through Jan. 9. Here are some of the works I noticed at the Nov. 20 opening:

A 4-foot-tall dramatic charcoal drawing of President-elect Barack Obama’s smiling face, by Hollywood artist Virginia Fifield, won ArtServe's People’s Choice Award. Fifield is best known for her large drawings of horses, dogs and wild birds. She said her Obama portrait (seen at the top of this post) makes a statement about unity.

“This portrait is drawn in my usual media of black charcoal on white paper, a natural metaphor for my hope that people, in spite of strong contrasts, can work together into a harmonious whole," she said.

Contrast that with the wild and woolly art of Jacklyn Laflamme, a glamorous native of Canada. Her kaleidoscopic painting, Stanley, pops off the wall and pulsates with vibrant color and movement. But there also is a narrative element to her work.

“This painting is part of a series that was inspired by my volunteer work at the Wildlife Care Center,” Laflamme said. “Stanley is a portrait of the most popular bunny. Everybody loved him because of his adorable personality. He had a wonderful life with his partner Gracie, but for some reason they always ended up back at the center, although they were adopted many times.”

Most appropriate for this time of year, fine arts photographer Michele Guarino’s print Thy God is a peaceful combination of architecture, chiseled message and clouds. It's beautifully matted and silver-framed.

ArtServe is located at 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale. For more information, call (954) 462-8190.

Art Basel may not be until next week, but you don’t have to wait until then to see some exciting and interesting art.

1 comment:

Verticus Erectus said...

Re "not waiting" for Art Basel, the City of Port St. Lucie's brand new Art Gallery is having its grand opening Wed., December 3rd with a retrospective of West Palm Beach award-winning photographer Tony Arruza works. You can find out more here.