Sometimes it all boils down to the boat.
Now on exhibition at the Tayloe Piggott Gallery, artist Kathryn Lynch’s River Tugs is an opus to the painter’s surroundings, and her naive, folk-like painting style is refreshing. It’s cool to have these paintings of tugboats and other vessels in Jackson, because they’re subject matter not often offered up in our mountain town. Lynch leaves out nautical details and concentrates on each boat’s essence—for her, these tugs are “symbols of the ongoing solitary traveler in each of us.” The theme is one we’ve picked up on in the most recent Piggott gallery shows, and these works encourage us to give pause—and that’s a good thing. No rushing. Lynch’s tonal, broad strokes, rendered in grays, greens, orange and blues, suggest play even as they suggest a certain somber observation of our collective psyche.
As children, pushing our Fisher Price tugboats around and around in the bath made the prospect of approaching bedtime much more welcome. Splashing play, followed by a dive under the blankets and dream time.
Showing concurrently at Tayloe Piggott is Nicole Charbonnet’s body of new works, Wild Things. Charbonnet’s layered, fresco-like works “serve as a metaphor for the phenomenon of recollection,” and portray animals found in the wild and iconic wild West horses and cowboy themes. Charbonnet also explores our own perceptions of self through non-human imagery; her work expresses a longing—and also a reverence—for days gone by.
She sees in her process of “erasing” the paint and overlaying additional layers something that both celebrates and criticizes the values portrayed by her subjects. “I’m raising questions about their current viability in a changed world. I make them look old and tired, though still beautiful, to ask if it’s time to relegate them to memory.”
A New Orleans native, Charbonnet says her home city greatly influences her work. “If you watch New Orleans, you see everywhere the effects of the process of time on surfaces,” she says. adding “That’s true of every place, every person.” The artist builds up her paintings with layers of textures, images, words, fabrics and collaged papers from all manner of sources. Says Charbonnet,“Nothing is ever completely gone, so even if you don’t hold a conscious memory of something, it forms the fabric and texture of who you are. I try to re-create the process your mind goes through in becoming what it is. You see something, and it reminds you of something else, another context, another feeling, even while the original image remains.”
River Tugs and Wild Things remain on exhbition through February 7, 2012. www.tayloepiggottgallery.com
Trailside Galleries annual Holiday Miniatures Show opens with a gallery reception on Thursday, December 29, 5-8:00 pm. The gallery is excited to début “exquisite” new miniature paintings from most of the gallery’s roster of artists. The gallery will feature new works by such noted Western artists as Kyle Sims, Dan Smith, Adam Smith, Joseph Sulkowski, Guy Coheleach, Robert Duncan, Nicholas Coleman, David Mayer, and many others.
The show’s opening takes place in conjunction with that evening’s downtown Jackson Holiday ArtWalk. While you are there, venture upstairs to see what’s new at the Jackson Hole Art Auction offices; Trailside produces the annual Fall Arts Festival event in conjunction with the Gerald Peters Gallery. For more information, phone 307-733-3186. www.trailsidegalleries.com …
Thursday, December 22, wildlife artist Mary Roberson gives an artist’s demonstration at Altamira Fine Art, 3-5:00 pm. An artist’s conversation, “My Sketch Book,” will be presented by Roberson at 6:00 pm.
Altamira takes its name from Spain’s famous Upper Paleolithic cave paintings of wild beasts. Of all Altamira’s artists, Roberson is most connected to that wild spirit, and inner knowledge that animals inform us.