This is your brain on art: A neuroscientist’s lessons on why abstract art makes our brains hurt so good - Noah Charney
It took a Nobel-winning scientist who specializes in human memory to break new ground in art history
Credit: Getty/Daniel Leal-Olivas
The greatest discoveries in art history, as in so many fields, tend to come from those working outside the box. Interdisciplinary studies break new ground because those steadfastly lashed to a specific field or way of thinking tend to dig deeper into well-trodden earth, whereas a fresh set of eyes, coming from a different school of thought, can look at old problems in new ways. Interviewing Eric Kandel, winner of the 2000 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine, and reading his latest book, “Reductionism in Art and Brain Science,” underscored this point. His new book offers one of the freshest insights into art history in many years. Ironic that it should come not from an art historian, but a neuroscientist specializing in human memory, most famous for his experiments involving giant sea snails. You can’t make this stuff up.
I’ve spent my life looking at art and analyzing it, and I’ve even brought a new discipline’s approach to art history. Because my academic work bridges art history and criminology (being a specialist in art crime), my own out-of-the-box contribution is treating artworks like crime scenes, whodunnits, and police procedurals. I examine Caravaggio’s “Saint Matthew Cycle” as if the three paintings in it are photographs of a crime scene, which we must analyze with as little a priori prejudice, and as much clean logic, as possible. Likewise, in my work deciphering one of most famous puzzle paintings, Bronzino’s “Allegory of Love and Lust,” a red herring (Vasari’s description of what centuries of scholars have assumed was this painting, but which Robert Gaston finally recognized was not at all, and had been an impossible handicap in trying to match the painting with Vasari’s clues about another work entirely) had to be cast aside in order for progress to be made.
Ernst Gombrich made waves when he dipped into optics in his book, “Art and Illusion.” Freud offered a new analysis of Leonardo. The Copiale cipher, an encoded, illuminated manuscript, was solved by Kevin Knight, a computer scientist and linguist. It takes an outsider to start a revolution. So it is not entirely surprising that a neuroscientist would open this art historian’s eyes, but my mind is officially blown. I feel like a veil has been pulled aside, and for that I am grateful.
Ask your average person walking down the street what sort of art they find more intimidating, or like less, or don’t know what to make of, and they’ll point to abstract or minimalist art. Show them traditional, formal, naturalistic art, like Bellini’s “Sacred Allegory,” art which draws from traditional core Western texts (the Bible, apocrypha, mythology) alongside a Mark Rothko or a Jackson Pollock or a Kazimir Malevich, and they’ll retreat into the Bellini, even though it is one of the most puzzling unsolved mysteries of the art world, a riddle of a picture for which not one reasonable solution has ever been put forward. The Pollock, on the other hand, is just a tangle of dripped paint, the Rothko just a color with a bar of another color on top of it, the Malevich is all white.
In abstract painting, elements are included not as visual reproductions of objects, but as references or clues to how we conceptualize objects. In describing the world they see, abstract artists not only dismantle many of the building blocks of bottom-up visual processing by eliminating perspective and holistic depiction, they also nullify some of the premises on which bottom-up processing is based. We scan an abstract painting for links between line segments, for recognizable contours and objects, but in the most fragmented works, such as those by Rothko, our efforts are thwarted.
Thus the reason abstract art poses such an enormous challenge to the beholder is that it teaches us to look at art — and, in a sense, at the world — in a new way. Abstract art dares our visual system to interpret an image that is fundamentally different from the kind of images our brain has evolved to reconstruct.
Kandel describes the difference between “bottom up” and “top down” thinking. This is basic stuff for neuroscience students, but brand new for art historians. Bottom up thinking includes mental processes that are ingrained over centuries: unconsciously making sense of phenomena, like guessing that a light source coming from above us is the sun (since for thousands of years that was the primary light source, and this information is programmed into our very being) or that someone larger must be standing closer to us than someone much smaller, who is therefore in the distance.
Top down thinking, on the other hand, is based on our personal experience and knowledge (not ingrained in us as humans with millennia of experiences that have programmed us). Top down thinking is needed to interpret formal, symbol or story-rich art. Abstraction taps bottom-up thinking, requiring little to no a priori knowledge.
Kandel is not the first to make this point. Henri Matisse said, “We are closer to attaining cheerful serenity by simplifying thoughts and figures. Simplifying the idea to achieve an expression of joy. That is our only deed [as artists].” But it helps to have a renowned scientist, who is also a clear writer and passionate art lover, convert the ideas of one field into the understanding of another. The shock for me is that abstraction should really be less intimidating, as it requires no advanced degrees and no reading of hundreds of pages of source material to understand and enjoy. And yet the general public, at least, finds abstraction and minimalism intimidating, quick to dismiss it with “oh, I could do that” or “that’s not art.” We are simply used to formal art; we expect it, and also do not necessarily expect to “understand it” in an interpretive sense. Our reactions are aesthetic, evaluating just two of the three Aristotelian prerequisites for art to be great: it demonstrates skill and it may be beautiful, but we will often skip the question of whether it is interesting, as that question requires knowledge we might not possess.
We might think that “reading” formal paintings, particularly those packed with symbols or showing esoteric mythological scenes, are what require active problem-solving. At an advanced academic level, they certainly do (I racked my brain for years over that Bronzino painting). But at any less-scholarly level, for most museum-goers, this is not the case. Looking at formal art is actually a form of passive narrative reading, because the artist has given us everything our brain expects and knows automatically how to handle. It looks like real life.
But the mind-bending point that Kandel makes is that abstract art, which strips away the narrative, the real-life, expected visuals, requires active problem-solving. We instinctively search for patterns, recognizable shapes, formal figures within the abstraction. We want to impose a rational explanation onto the work, and abstract and minimalist art resists this. It makes our brains work in a different, harder, way at a subconscious level. Though we don’t articulate it as such, perhaps that is why people find abstract art more intimidating, and are hastier to dismiss it. It requires their brains to function in a different, less comfortable, more puzzled way. More puzzled even than when looking at a formal, puzzle painting.
Kandel told The Wall Street Journal that the connection between abstract art and neuroscience is about reductionism, a term in science for simplifying a problem as much as possible to make it easier to tackle and solve. This is why he studied giant sea snails to understand the human brain. Sea snails have just 20,000 neurons in their brains, whereas humans have billions. The simpler organism was easier to study and those results could be applied to humans.
“This is reductionism,” he said, “to take a complex problem and select a central, but limited, component that you can study in depth. Rothko — only color. And yet the power it conveys is fantastic. Jackson Pollock got rid of all form.”
In fact, some of the best abstract artists began in a more formal style, and peeled the form away. Turner, Mondrian and Brancusi, for instance, have early works in a quite realistic style. They gradually eroded the naturalism of their works, Mondrian for instance painting trees that look like trees early on, before abstracting his paintings into a tangle of branches, and then a tangle of lines and then just a few lines that, to him, still evoke tree-ness. It’s like boiling away apple juice, getting rid of the excess water, to end up with an apple concentrate, the ultimate essence of apple-ness.
We like to think of abstraction as a 20th century phenomenon, a reaction to the invention of photography. Painting and sculpture no longer had to fulfill the role of record of events, likenesses and people — photography could do that. So painting and sculpture was suddenly free to do other things, things photography couldn’t do as well. Things like abstraction. But that’s not the whole story. A look at ancient art finds it full of abstraction. Most art history books, if they go back far enough, begin with Cycladic figurines (dated to 3300-1100 BC). Abstracted, ghost-like, sort-of-human forms. Even on cave walls, a few lines suggest an animal, or a constellation of blown hand-prints float on a wall in absolute darkness.
Abstract art is where we began, and where we have returned. It makes our brains hurt, but in all the right ways, for abstract art forces us to see, and think, differently.
Noah Charney is a Salon arts columnist and professor specializing in art crime, and author of "The Art of Forgery" (Phaidon). MORE NOAH CHARNEY.
PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR LINK TO ORIGINAL ARTICLE.
Best in show awarded to Anahi DeCanio for Brooklyn Walls at Huntington Arts Council Exhibit VERSATILITY IN STREET ART
It's always exciting when an artist gets an email announcing that your art submissions make it into a juried art exhibit. When you get the call that you won an award... that's a happy day. Today was such a day. I'm honored and excited to be part of this great exhibit juried by Phetus. Super excited to have had my mixed media abstract "Brooklyn Walls" be awarded best in show!
Many talented artists are participating in the show to be held at the Main Street Gallery of the Huntington Arts Council in Huntington, New York. The Council holds several exhibits throughout the year and they are deeply involved in promoting and supporting the arts. Please pay them a visit by clicking HERE. Details on exhibit hours and dates are listed on the invitation at the bottom of the post.
Below is the list of participating artists.
Virginia Bushart, Anahi DeCanio, Jonathan Duci, Terry Finch, Jim Finlayson, Nicole Franz, Tim Gowan, Bill Grabowski, Geraldine Hoffman, Stefanie Kane,Jade "MUMBOT" Kuei, Jennifer Lau, Theo Lau, Jude Lobasso, Sharon Lobo, Jared Long, Celeste Mauro, Kasmira Mohanty, Stephen Palladino, Reme 821, Rodney Rodriguez, David Rogers, Jennie Sjostrom, Jeff Slack, Christina Stow and Stephen Wyler
The arts play an important role in enriching the lives of our communities.
Hint hint... Please support the arts!
Today, on so called "giving Tuesday" I'm compelled to write a short note about ReachingU. I've been lucky enough to have been part of this wonderful team of volunteers for a few years. They openly give of their time and work tirelessly to open doors and provide opportunities for children and those in need of a hand.
This year's event marked their 15th anniversary of what grew from an idea to give back and make the world a better place - starting out as a simple garage sale - to what is now a well run major influencer supporting a broad swath of causes and contributing to several organizations which are approved after passing strict due diligence measures. The mission is to promote initiatives and strengthen organizations that help Uruguayans living in poverty.We promote initiatives and strengthen organizations that offer educational opportunities so that all Uruguayans living in poverty can develop their full potential.
With a number of member branches that have sprouted over the years, fundraising events held every year worldwide have become increasingly successful over time. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to attend the NY Gala which this year honored famed Uruguayan born architect Rafael Vinoly. His foundation also generously contributed to the evening's fundraising efforts.
As usual, the hours of work behind the scenes from the host chairs, committees and volunteers showed. There were several donors who contributed to the auction, including several other artists. I had an amazing time fun time made all the better from the chance to attend with friend and colleague Angel Naula, president of Naula Workshops, meet the warm and engaging Vinoly and a chance to chat with the very cool (and gracious) Sebastian Arcelus from House of Cards and Madam Secretary.
But more important than all the fun and glitter, I'm anxious to hear the stories of how the results from the night will make a genuine difference in the lives of so many. Feel lucky and honored...
Please take a moment to check out their site and all they do by clicking on the logo below. Thanks!
Saturday December 10th and 11th.
SATURDAY DECEMBER 10TH - 4 TO 8 PM.
Anahi DeCanio - John Todaro - Annie Sessler - Sarah Jaffe Turnbull
Four local artists who make a seamless connection between nature and the abstract will be showing at Ashawagh Hall on December 10th and 11th. Their work includes abstract painting, ceramic sculpture and prints from a variety of techniques including monotypes, solar prints, fish prints and photography. In addition to what promises to be a stunning collection of larger wall pieces, they will be creating an “art-boutique” with the idea that fine art can make fine gifts.
ANAHI DeCANIO moved with her family from Uruguay to New York when she was a child. She is a multi-disciplinary artist working in a variety of media, including award winning product designs. Her work is part of private and corporate collections in the United States, Europe and Latin America. Winning numerous awards in national juried competitions, she has participated in group and solo exhibits across the US in several galleries and museums. Her work has been published in a number of publications, including The New York Times and TIME, and has been used in several TV and motion picture productions. Anahi is also the Creative Director of ArtyZen Studios and founder and curator of eco-friendly art and design show eARThHAMPTONS. She is an active participant and volunteer in several charities and art organizations.
“Every brushstroke, color, element, or scratch as symbols of the marks left behind by life events and the passage of time” - She explores this concept by applying countless strokes of paint and occasional collage elements and gilding creating intricate abstract landscapes. Art imitating life - some of these layers are part of the story but remain hidden, some subtly reveal themselves in small glimpses. Inspired by nature as well as urban settings, the results are richly textured surfaces exploding with color and nuance.
SARAH JAFFE TURNBULL moved to the East End in 1981 from Vermont, where she had practiced law and been involved with community issues of health, civil rights and criminal justice. She continued her involvement in public service while raising a family. She began working with clay around ten years ago and started exploring sculpture about five years ago. Sarah’s ceramic sculptures are deceptively metallic looking due to the glaze, which implies a strength that on closer observation belies vulnerability. Some of the forms are architectonic, but off balance, creating a different kind of tension.
Her prints, both monotypes and solar, work with color and movement- some peaceful and others edgy. Her work has been exhibited in numerous venues, the most recent being the 2016 Long Island Biennial at the Heckscher Museum in Huntington, NY, and the internationally juried exhibition of solar plate prints at the Alex Ferrone Gallery in Cutchogue, NY.
ANNIE SESSLER’S prints have been featured in the New York Times, on the CBS Sunday Morning Show, in Dan's Papers, Edible East End, Manhattan & Brooklyn, on the menus of the Red Lobster restaurant chain, in the East Hampton Star , EH Press and on OneKingsLane.
Her Japanese inspired original Gyotaku ink impressions are hand rubbed onto cloth, while her line of digitally reproduced works can be machine printed onto fabric or fine art papers. These fine reproductions can include alterations to color, form and scale. They can also form the basis or skeleton of mixed media drawings and collage. The show will include framed and loose prints, along with excerpts and abstractions of her traditional fish prints. Annie lives and works in Montauk.
JOHN TODARO’S award winning photographs are widely collected. His work in on permanent display at Southampton Hospital and at the Harold McMahon Medical Center in Amagansett. In 2014, his photograph “Aperture” was selected for the cover of Mark Doty’s “Deep Lane,” and his work has been published by The New Yorker, Unicef, Shutterbug, Crain’s, Men’s Journal and other magazines. In the ’70’s, John studied with master printer Anthony Nobile, gaining inspiration from Nobile’s studies with Minor White and Paul Caponigro. He also worked as a ranger for the National Park Service, cataloguing the collection of 19th century photographs at Sagamore Hill National Historic Site.
John is most known for his landscapes, but at Ashawagh the focus will be on a compelling new collection of semi-abstractions with a particular emphasis on botanical forms. This work (rendered in both color and monochrome) is unified by simplicity of form and a distinctive lyrical voice. For interested collectors, there will be a large group of “first prints” along with a full selection of miniatures and unframed work. John works year round from his home-studio in East Hampton.
One of the great things about surrounding yourself with generous spirits is that you'll often be presented with the opportunity to make a difference. Wonderful creatives have been hard at work to put together what promises to be a fun night of "mystery and mayhem" to benefit a very worthwhile cause. It is an integral part of our core business philosophy to give back whenever possible. It's what makes us tick!
We are proud and honored to be a small part of this effort. Anahi DeCanio will be donating an abstract painting entitled "NY LOVE" to Mystery by Design. The event is organized by the Designers & Builders Alliance of Long Island for the benefit of KiDS NEED MoRE. The painting will be part of the event's fundraising auction. Please read below about these two wonderful organizations and their efforts to be a positive force and contributing members in the community.And...please read below! So much talent involved! It will be a can't miss event!
MYSTERY BY DESIGN - AT STARK
A tongue-in-cheek mystery fund raiser benefiting KiDS NEED MoRE, a charity for kids with cancer. Rio Hamilton as the evening’s MC will guide the audience and “featured cast” through a semi ad-libbed script. Featured cast members include: George Oliphant, Iris Dankner, Stephen Fanuka, Justin Shaulis, Tyler Wisler, Barbara Viteri of Designerlebrity, Lisa McMahon, Robin Baron, Marlaina Teich, Ellen Baker and Keith Mazzei Sponsored by- Stark Home, Aspire Design and Home, House Magazine, Showcase Kitchens, European Marble + Granite, ZYR Vodka, ASID - NY Metro, Elegant Affairs Caterer, Creepwalk Media, Engel + Volkers Realty Website - DBAofLI.org
About the Designers & Builders
AllianceDesigners + Builders Alliance of Long Island, A Foundation Built on Giving, is a unique organization uniting all home-trade professionals under one roof – for networking and industry-focused activities. The mission is three fold: to foster the concept of good design on Long Island, produce programs that enhance relationships among the myriad of home trades and most importantly, to raise money for worthy, local causes. The D+BAofLI is a registered 501(c)(3) charity.
ABOUT Kids NEED MoRE (From their website)
Click HERE for more info and how you can be a part of their mission
KiDS NEED M♥RE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of children, families & young adults coping with cancer and life-threatening illness.
In 1990, a group of concerned parents created a camping experience for their children diagnosed with cancer and their siblings. Camp Adventure now serves the east coast and tri-state area. It remains one of the only camps of its kind to serve child cancer patients and siblings.
In 2013, a dedicated group of Camp Adventure volunteers began KiDS NEED M♥RE(Motivational Recovery Environments, Inc.) to parent the camp and ensure its longevity.
With the help of many wonderful people, we will be able to continue Camp Adventure, where children coping with cancer can celebrate life in a safe and positive environment while providing respite for their families and caregivers.
With the love and support of so many amazing people we now provide other programs and services throughout the year for our kids and their families.
At KiDS NEED M♥RE we believe that people and families coping with life-threatening illness and trauma need opportunities to enjoy normal day-to-day activities. For over 25 years, through the historic Camp Adventure program, our volunteers have provided fun activities that foster peer relationships, independence and respite. We believe that fun heals.
At KiDS NEED M♥RE we believe that children and families coping with life threatening illness and trauma deserve to do more than just survive. They deserve to thrive!
Our programs and activities are designed to reunite siblings and allow parents time for respite. We create networks with other families that are facing similar experiences.
ANAHI DECANIO EXHIBITS TWO ABSTRACT PAINTINGS AT HUNTINGTON ARTS COUNCIL – GROUP EXHIBIT AT MAIN STREET GALLERY
Conversations in Color at Huntington Arts Council Main Gallery
Anahi DeCanio, Creative Director of ArtyZen Studios and eARThHAMPTONS, has two paintings juried into a group show entitled Conversations in Color Abstract Exhibit. The two abstract paintings are entitled Pared Lateral 57 and East of Paradise. Pared Lateral 57 is inspired by the patina and layers of everyday life and paint on old walls in Uruguay, where the artist was born. East of Paradise is part of the Sea Glass collection; a series of abstract paintings inspired by the coastal colors of the Hamptons on the East End of Long Island, New York.
The show was organized and sponsored by the Huntington Arts Council and will be on display at Main Street Gallery in Huntington, New York and will run from October 6th until October 22nd. Opening reception will be held on Friday, October 14th from 6 to 8 pm.
The juror, is local artist Kerry Irvine. She is an abstract expressionist painter. Her work can be found in private and public collections throughout the United States and abroad. Ms. Irvine challenged the artists with the following statement
The challenge I proposed to the applicants, “As Artists we use color to communicate. This is how we bare our souls and share our deepest secrets. With color, we tell our stories. What’s your story? ” was met with great enthusiasm and a myriad of beautiful, strong, individual pieces of art.
The group includes an accomplished group of artists which promises to make this show a wonderful experience. Besides Ms. DeCanio, Martha McAleer, Doug Reina, and Nicole Franz will have paintings in the show. Please see the total list of artists at the end of the blog.
About Huntington Arts Council (from their site)
The Huntington Arts Council enriches the quality of life of Long Islanders with programs and services that address the needs and interests of artists, cultural organizations and the community.
The Huntington Arts Council, a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization, promotes arts and culture generated by Long Island artists to our children and to the general population. We work to enrich the cultural, social and economic life of the community by nurturing the professional development of artists, and by providing timely news and events via Arts Cultural News (circulation: 90,000). Our Arts-in-Education program reaches 35,000 children annually through our partner school districts. We also offer artistic programs and services to our more than 100 cultural organization members who encompass the broad spectrum of arts disciplines.
The arts are an important reason why Long Island is increasingly recognized as a great place to live, work and conduct business. The arts generate jobs and wages, millions in annual direct spending, and millions more in terms of indirect spending by people drawn to attend cultural events in our community.
The Huntington Arts Council plays a leading role in sustaining the economic benefits of the arts through its promotion of activities and events in our community. The arts create a vibrant, energized, and culturally rich community.
Since it was founded in 1963, the Huntington Arts Council has inspired and aided the growth of hundreds of art organizations and individual artists now flourishing across Long Island. The Huntington Arts Council celebrates the diversity of Long Island’s cultural resources through sponsored activities, programs and publications that advocate cultural awareness and education.
The Huntington Arts Council is the official arts coordinating agency of the Town of Huntington and serves as the primary regranting agency in Suffolk County for the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA).
Constance Blackman, Sandra Bowman, Joyce Bressler, Kathy Cunningham, Anahi DeCanio, Christine Dupuis, Alicia Evans, Baruch Farbiarz, Reg Fludd, Nicole Franz, Mary Fusco, Peter Galasso, John Greene, Rodee Hansen, Roseann Harder, Ron Janssen, Vincent Joseph, Marc Josloff, Karen Kirshner, Deidre Klein, Julia Lang-Shapiro, Tara Leale Porter, Celeste Mauro, Martha Mcaleer, Lorraine Nuzzo, Douglas Reina, Che Sabalja, Sally Shore, and Penny Strong.
Come Out to Play - Mixed Media on canvas by Anahi DeCanio
Not totally certain of the exact definition of Serendipity, unless of course, you’re thinking of the fabulous frozen hot chocolate served at the namesake place in New York City. I spoke to several friends who gave me a variety of interpretations.
But…I’ll backtrack. I was supposed to “Come Out to Play” this past Saturday to attend a closing reception for “Abstract Women”. The group exhibit was an all women show curated by Mary Cantone, Director and owner at William Ris East Gallery in Jampesport, NY. The show included my artwork (Anahi DeCanio), and the works of Martha McAleer, Anne Franklin and Marilyn Weiss. As it turns out, literal matters of the heart prevented me from from going and attending the reception.
As I was facing a few very unexpected life detours I got an email from a friend. “Congratulations on you making the cover of The Independent!” Yes! There it is… My definition of Serendipity…
This was a busy social week in the Hamptons. The always amazing landscape architect on a mission to protect us from “Come Out to Play” Mixed media on canvas by Anahi DeCaniopesticides, Edwina von Gal, had a fundraiser for her fabulous organization PRFCT Earth Project with non other than Deborah Harry as entertainment. There were beautiful horses (and people) wrapping up the The Hampton Classic and art exhibits all over town, including one curated by Pamela Willoughby and Julia Keyes benefiting ProjectMost, a project near and dear to my heart which focuses on providing needed services for children on the East End. So I must admit it was a big surprise to see my painting on the cover. The timing could not have been better.
And last but not least – William Ris East has been in the art world for 50 years but it is brand new to the North Fork. This is a perfect time to follow the Long Island wine trail on the East and pay them a visit! The gallery is located next to the Sherwood House Tasting Room. So stop by to meet really nice people, view great art and enjoy a glass of wine!
The heart matters had a great outcome and are fortunately behind me but the smile from the cover still remains! Thanks to the team at Hampton Daze and The Independent, a wonderful source of all things Hamptons, for the smile and the cover!
To view the entire publication, please click HERE!
William Ris Gallery East, which is connected to the Sherwood House Vineyards Tasting Room in Jamesport, New York is hosting a closing reception for “Abstract Women”. The reception will be held on Saturday, September 10th from 4 to 7 pm. Refreshments will be served. The Tasting Room will also be open. Music and tastings will be offered throughout the afternoon to early evening.
Under the direction of William Ris owner Mary Cantone, this group of accomplished award winning women artists came together to create an exciting and eclectic show in an uplifting color palette. The exhibit showcases abstract artwork from Anahi DeCanio, Marilyn Weiss, Martha McAleer and Anne Raymond.
Ms. DeCanio’s work is exhibiting many of her zen landscapes known for intense infusions of colors through layers of rich textures. She is the Creative Director of ArtyZen Studios and founder of eARThHAMPTONS. Her work has garnered numerous awards has been exhibited widely internationally, including The Boca Raton Museum of Art, Brown University, Pen and Brush, and the Palm Beach Armory, among others. Her paintings and photography also regularly appear in movies and TV shows. She is an avid volunteer and serves on the Board of the East Hampton Artist’s Alliance
Marilyn Weiss has been exhibiting her distinctive works of art in galleries and museums throughout the US and internationally for more than three decades. She has earned numerous prestigious awards and honors. Weiss has the distinction of being published in The Collage Handbook, as one of the country’s most interesting and notable collage artists.
Anne Raymond's work is in the permanent collections of major museums including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Blanton Museum of Art: The University of Texas at Austin. Her work has been shown extensively in solo and group shows in the United States and abroad. Numerous noteworthy galleries have exhibited her work. Her work is also part of numerous private collections including Goldman Sachs, Saks Fifth Avenue, Pfizer
Martha McAleer has participated in a large number of group and solo shows. Her paintings reflect her upbringing in the Central Lakes region of Maine. She consistently user her perception of nature to create a variety of textures to create a distinct transparency of nature.
“Abstract Women” has been extremely well received and has appealed to long time collectors as well as those in the interior design world looking for elegant pieces to grace client’s upscale homes. The success of the Opening on August 13th prompted, Mary Cantone, owner and director of William Ris East to hold a closing event as well. As numerous pieces from the exhibit have been sold, there will be new artwork on display.
William Ris Gallery is new to the East End but has a long rich history in the art world dating back to 1966. This year is particularly significant since the gallery is celebrating it’s 50th year. The family owned gallery was founded in New Jersey on the principles of maintaining the highest standards and love of the arts which is the core of its continued success. The gallery’s stable of artists, while still growing, has a dedicated following that is renowned and recognized nationally.
Mary’s career in designing interiors and space planning has included collaborating with artists and encouraging clients to enhance, with passion, the fine arts. A bonus to Cantone’s innate and nurtured abilities is her keen sensibilities for mixing mediums, styles and colors.
LOCATION: William Ris Gallery East - 1291 Main Road, Jamesport, NY - 609-408-5203
Anahi DeCanio is excited to announce being now represented by the William Ris Gallery in Jampesport, NY on the Northfork of Long Island. To celebrate the new collaboration, Mary Cantone, Director of William Ris has organized the exhibition, "Abstract Women" which will feature Anahi DeCanio's artwork as well as that of Martha McAleer, Anne Raymond and Marilyn Weiss.
Anahi DeCanio is an accomplished multidisciplinary artist whose artwork includes mixed media, collage, assemblage and installation. Her work is part of private and corporate collections worldwide. Winning numerous awards in national juried competitions for art and product design, Anahi has participated in group and solo exhibits across the US in several notable venues and museums. Her work has been published in a number of publications, including TIME. Anahi’s artwork has been used in several TV and motion picture productions. Anahi, is the founder of eARThHAMPTONS and Creative Director of ArtyZen Studios. She serves on various boards and committees of 501-c3 art organizations and others.
The show will be an interesting collection of abstract paintings by women artists highlighted in a group show. Opening Reception is Saturday, August 13th. Reception 4-8pm.
Join artists Anahi DeCanio, Ann Raymond, Martha McAleer, Marilyn Weiss, and at William Ris Gallery East for a glass of wine and lively discussion.
William Ris East is located inside the Sherwood House Tasting Room on the North Fork, Jamesport, NY. 1291 Main Road Jamesport, NY 111947
About William Ris Gallery
THE HISTORY OF WILLIAM RIS GALLERY IS RICH WITH LOVE AND COMMITMENT, DETERMINATION AND HOPE.
In 1966, Barbara Starr Schreckengaust and her son William Ris Schreckengaust opened the Gallery and Academy of Art. Their collaboration, love and knowledge of the arts was the foundation for the continued success of the gallery. In 1971, the gallery opened its second location in Stone Harbor, New Jersey. The gallery’s stable of artists, while still growing, has a dedicated following that is renowned and recognized nationally.
Today, the gallery is owned by Mary Cantone who remains devoted to the memory of Bill, Barbara’s high standards and the success and growth of the gallery. In keeping with their collective shared vision, Mary recently opened William Ris East in Jamesport, New York on Long Island’s North Shore to continue the traditions of William Ris Gallery.
Mary’s career in designing interiors and space planning has included collaborating with artists and encouraging clients to enhance, with passion, the fine arts. A bonus to Cantone’s innate and nurtured abilities is her keen sensibilities for mixing mediums, styles and colors.
Anahi DeCanio co-curates ART WITHOUT BORDERS - America: North and South along with artist Lori Horowitz
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Art League of Long Island, Dix Hills, NY
July 30th – August 7th, 2016A reception for the art exhibition “Art Without Borders - America: North and South” will be held on Friday, August 5th, 2016, 6:30 – 9:30pm. The show, which runs through August 7th, 2016, will feature artwork by local artists and Uruguayan born artists - hence North and South. Artists include Anahi DeCanio, Lori Horowitz, Neil Leinwohl, Olga Armand-Ugon, Kelynn Z. Alder and Aurelio Torres.
Sneak Preview: Sunday, July 31st, 1:00 pm. Meet the artists and enjoy a Q & A about the concept behind the show and the artwork on exhibit.
Monday August 1st - 1:00 PM - Nancy Ganzekaufer owner of Expressive Living Art and Framing will give a talk about the role of art in the home. Topics will include art selection, the purchase of original work vs. prints, art placement and additional discussion of interest to collectors and homeowners alike.
“Art without Borders - America: North and South”, promises to be an exciting exhibit with three local artists and three artists from Uruguay featuring their latest work exploring differences and commonality in a juxtaposition of cultural currents from North and South. A blend of distinctive styles and perspectives using elements from a variety of media will be on exhibit including painting, sculpture and installation. Refreshments will be served during the artist reception. Let the art move you and dance to music from Salsa to Swing. All artwork is for sale. The reception is free and open to the public.
Anahi DeCanio: is an accomplished multidisciplinary artist whose artwork includes mixed media, collage, assemblage and installation. Her work is part of private and corporate collections worldwide. Winning numerous awards in national juried competitions for art and product design, Anahi has participated in group and solo exhibits across the US in several notable venues and museums. Her work has been published in a number of publications, including TIME. Anahi’s artwork has been used in several TV and motion picture productions. Anahi, is the founder and curator of eARThHAMPTONS and Creative Director of ArtyZen Studios. She serves on various boards and committees of 501-c3 art organizations and others.
Lori Horowitz: Lori Horowitz is multifaceted artist and lifelong supporter of the arts through teaching, arts advisory positions, working as an exhibiting artist here and abroad. She is a union scenic artist and set designer for film, TV and theater. Ms. Horowitz is currently, a curator/director of “Studio 5404,” an artists’ space, a non-profit cultural arts organization on the South Nassau /Suffolk border. Her current series, “Burned into Memory”, is a study of personalities and environments. Sculptural images digest the posture of individuals while faces reflect their stories. In her process, “Painting with Fire”, images are burned into copper screening creating haunting shadows, translucent images and reflective imagery.
Kelynn Z. Alder: is featured in Cynthia Maris Dantzic’s book: “100 New York Painters” is an accomplished artist whose portraits have been commissioned by such notable publications as The New Yorker, as well as many private collectors. Self-defined as a “Visual Essayist with a wanderlust” Kelynn is recognized internationally for her portraits of Australian Aboriginal elders and the Indigenous of the Mexican Rainforest along with Coney Island sideshow performers.
Olga Armand- Ugon: is a well- known Uruguayan artist who assembles fragile materials, gluing, composing with them, and running a line of certain character along the stains, generating relationships and a dialogue between spaces, stains, textures, and lines. Her intentionally unfinished faces awaken the imagination, inviting the viewer to join in the emotional experience of their inner world or to complete it with their own. Olga has exhibited widely in group and solo shows including a recent exhibit at the Consulate General of Uruguay in New York City.
Neil Leinwohl: In 1966 I left a Fine Arts Scholarship at the School Of Visual Arts and enlisted in the Army to be a photographer. Five months later I found myself in Vietnam armed with a Leica M3 and a couple of Nikons. I create art on the computer, narratives built with photographs and graphics I’ve manipulated. I also work with acrylics and oil paint sticks. Since 1970, I’ve worked in advertising, as a writer, art director and creative director. I now work on my art full-time..My art is about personal mythology, both real and conjured and the unreliable nature of memory. I create art on the computer, narratives built with photographs and graphics I’ve manipulated.
Aurelio Torres: Born in Montevideo, Uruguay to a family of artists, Aurelio was raised in New York City. His father, Horacio Torres, was an accomplished classically trained artist. His artistic training was in Barcelona, Spain, where he studied for several years with his uncle Augusto Torres. Aurelio’s grandfather, was the acclaimed Modernist Master Joaquin Torres-Garcia. Aurelio’s travels have inspired him to create much of his work in natural outdoor settings. His aesthetic sensibility is one of essential simplicity and natural, uncontrived beauty.
Art League of Long Island
107 East Deer Park Road Dix Hills, NY 11746 p: 631 462-5400 f: 631 462-5011
Additional Info: Anahi DeCanio 561 706-1525 - email: earthHamptons@gmail.com
Lori Horowitz: 631-748-4196 - email: LoriHorowitzartist@gmail.com