Coderch & Malavia’s intrepid potential airman is typical of their figures, depicted in a “captured moment.” He is full of youthful confidence that he will fly freely, escaping the restrictions of daily life. He knows the story of Icarus, but perhaps he has read the aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, author of The Little Prince, who wrote, “I fly because it releases my mind from the tyranny of petty things,” a sense of freedom even a young boy can feel.
In his enigmatic paintings, the Turkish artist Fatih Gurbuz explores the relationship of mind/body/spirit and nature/human/ animal. In Everything Will Be Beautiful, a young girl faces away from the viewer toward a halo that casts a blue light and her shadow on the ground. She stands between a bison and a hyena with doves flying above her head. It is an image of physical and mystical harmony. Gurbuz leaves us to read into the symbolism.
He explains, “My main objective is not to answer questions or impose them, but to make the audience ask questions and think.” He cites the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche who “says that the main source of creation is nature and it encircles, feeds, and guides people. In this sense,” he continues, “for a person to understand nature is to understand his/her own boundaries in the universe. Thus, I build my compositions upon a nature-animal-human centered structure. The position of these three elements in the composition is independent of hierarchical arrangements.”
Nietzsche wrote, “The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.”
Mark Steven Greenfield, in the catalog to his exhibition Black Madonna, writes, “fear of the ‘other’ often devolves into mindless hatred. Yet sometimes the path to empathy lies in the visualization of one’s physical victimization—particularly when paired with a symbol that has come to be associated with universal love.”
Greenfield explores the enigmatic Black Madonnas that began appearing in medieval Europe—dismissed by some as having accumulated dirt over the centuries and seen by others as connected to pre-Christian myth and the physical roots of humanity. Greenfield paints Madonna and child images in a traditional style, but his figures are Black. He replaces the bucolic and innocuous backgrounds with fantasy scenes of retribution upon those who have oppressed Blacks throughout American history. In the background of Toppled, for instance, a monument to a Confederate general is toppled from its base, which contains a representation of the Confederate flag.
Greenfield says, “My work incorporates irony, humor, tragedy, pathos, history and a myriad of other tools to challenge long-held notions of race in a different way.”
In the pages of this special section, collectors will gain insights into figurative artwork being created today. The pieces reflect the artists’ surroundings and experiences and often delve into complex narratives that lead the viewers on their own paths.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Arden Gallery is looking to 2021 with hope and positivity with their January group show Floral Still Life, signifying unity and rebirth.
The World We Share
As 2021 arrives, RJD Gallery curated an exhibition that helps define inner feelings and the current times. The show, titled The World We Share, will feature artwork from artists such as Geoffrey Laurence, Julia Chen, Matt R. Martin, Salvatore Alessi, Margaret Bowland and Frank Oriti.
CINDY RIZZA - Recorded History
A pile of lovingly made and lovingly used quilts and afghans on a chair in the afternoon sun is a comforting sight. It might inspire remembrance of things past or the idea of curling up underneath one of them for a nap.
Scottsdale & VICINITY
While other states in the country prepare for their cold, winter months, Arizona comes alive with its dynamic, diverse art scene. It’s not all tumbleweeds and dusty earth but rather a burgeoning art destination from the small northern towns of Flagstaff, Prescott and Sedona, to the larger cities of Phoenix, Tucson and Scottsdale.
Garvey|Simon in New York is a private dealer and art advisory service in New York. In 2016, it’s co-founder Elizabeth K. Garvey devised an innovative Review Program “to open a dialogue between artists and galleries, a practice that has long been anathema to gallery orthodoxy.”
MOMENTS IN TIME
COLLECTOR'S FOCUS STILL LIFES
Using the elements as his guide, Michael Scott examines the changing landscape in two exhibitions.
Engaging with the Arts
The 31st annual Celebration of Fine Art returns January 16 in Scottsdale, Arizona.
BETSY EBY Mystics
The American Quaker John Greenleaf Whittier wrote a poem about the Vedic practice of consuming a hallucinogenic drink in rituals. As a Quaker he advocated, rather, waiting for “the still small voice of calm.”
Learning to Fly, by Spanish sculptors Coderch & Malavia, depicts a boy leaning forward, poised on tiptoe, confident that his dream of flying will be realized by his wings of corrugated cardboard, bamboo and rope that will carry him above the trees and the sea.