Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Kaller Fine Arts Premiere Diego Ortiz Mugica's Photographs of Argentina's National Parks

Embassy of Argentina and Kaller Fine Arts Premiere Diego Ortiz Mugica's Photographs of Argentina's National Parks

As Part of Argentina's Bicentennial Celebration - New Exhibition Features 20 Photographs
from 12-year Project Covering 12 National Parks

Washington, DC (October 15, 2010) - The Embassy of Argentina will have an opening reception on Monday, November 8, 6-8:30PM, for an exhibition premiering 20 photographs of Argentina's national parks by Diego Ortiz Mugica featured in the new book Parques Nacionales Argentinos (The National Parks of Argentina). Press may preview the exhibition on Saturday, November 6, 2-4PM. The exhibition, part of the celebration of Argentina's bicentennial, will be open to the public November 10-11, 1-5PM, and November 12, 1-3PM. Kaller Fine Arts (www.kallerfinearts.com) will have a large selection of Mugica's works available including images from The National Parks, Fly Fishing Moments, The Geography of the Body and other series.

In the book's prologue, Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner celebrates "the extraordinary value and enormous richness of our land, our nature reserves, and our diversity." The artist's goal in the national parks project, on which he spent twelve years and traversed one third of Argentina's 36 parks, was to create "perfectly clear images where you can feel the stones, the sand, the trees and perceive the wind and the cold ... to show the natural beauty" of the parks. Among his favorite sites, the Iguazu Falls, Glaciares, and Patagonia North.

About the Artist

Diego Ortiz Mugica, born and raised in Buenos Aires, uses photography, he says, to "share beauty with people" and his work is a way to "shout to ask people to stop and contemplate beauty." Looking and contemplation have always been important, especially as a child when a congenital heart defect kept him largely inactive for the first six years of his life. Following an operation that repaired his heart, and extensive recuperation, he developed a passion for camping.

Mugica, an active photographer for more than three decades, studied for three years with Pedro uis Raota at the Escuela Superior de Arte Fotográfico (beginning in 1980), and also participated in workshops with Ulf Sjöstedt, then director of Victor Hasselblad Company magazine. Subsequently he studied large format photography with Esteban Marco, thanks to a Foundation Antorchas scholarship. In 1999 and 2001, he participated in two separate workshops with John Sexton (who worked with Ansel Adams for the last eight years of Adams' life). Mugica employs the zone system developed by Ansel Adams and Fred Archer in the late 1930s and speaks of his artistic inspirations as a trinity, with "Ansel Adams, John Sexton and Edward Weston as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit", respectively. He also cites as inspiration Richard Avedon for portraiture and Robert Mapplethorpe for the "effective" way he "took pictures of bodies and flowers."

His work is in numerous public collections, among them Argentina's Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (National Museum of Fine Arts), Banco Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz Bank), and Fundación ARCADE (ARCADE Foundation). Private collections include Argentine President Mrs. Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, Juan Cambaso, president of the art fair ARTE BA, Infanta Cristina, Duchess of Palma de Mallorca, Michael Cowdray (UK), Carole Bouquet (FR), and many others.

Mugica divides his time between a house in Buenos Aires and a home Patagonia. He spends four to five months of the year at the Patagonia house, which he has owned for 15 years, and describes the environment there as "another way of living ... looking at the Limay River is like getting a massage." He would spend more time there, but in a nod to life's practicalities, he noted: "God is everywhere, but he does business in Buenos Aires."

The Embassy of Argentina is located at 1660 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, 20009 (corner of Q Street & New Hampshire Avenue, NW). Metro access via the Red Line, Dupont Circle stop, Q Street exit.

The exhibition is being held in conjunction with FotoWeek DC, November 6-13, 2010. Additional information is available at www.fotoweekdc.org.

About Kaller Fine Arts

Kaller Fine Arts (http://www.kallerfinearts.com/) is a private gallery and art consulting service dedicated to providing affordable, high quality artwork to individuals and businesses. Candace Kaller brings to KFA over ten years of experience as a museum educator at the National Gallery of Art and the National Museum for Women in the Arts, as well as prior ownership of the Galerie de Tours in San Francisco. Kaller Fine Arts is open by appointment: mailto:candace@kallerfinearts.comor 301-365-9376.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Allan Gerson first-ever solo exhibition at festival in Morroco

Allan Gerson is First US Photographer to Have Solo Exhibition –
The Sanctuary of the Shadow – At 2010 Asilah Arts Festival in Morocco

Washington, DC-Based Artist Also Showing 15 Pieces of Jewelry Derived from his Photos

Washington, DC (July 6, 2010) – The 2010 Asilah Arts Festival in Asilah, Morocco, will host the exhibition “The Sanctuary of the Shadow” featuring twenty-two photographs by Washington, DC-based artist Allan Gerson. The exhibition opens July 10, 2010 at the King Hassan II Center, immediately following a reception at the Prince Bandar Bin Al Sultan Library, and remains on view through July 26. Gerson is the first American photographer to have a solo exhibition at the 32-year old festival.

Allan Gerson, a well-known attorney who specializes in international law, maintains a dual career as a photographer, and more recently as a jewelry designer. In “The Sanctuary of the Shadow”, the artist uses black & white and color photography to pay homage to the architectural intricacy and beauty of the King Hassan II Mosque, and to explore the distinct topography of the Sahara and America’s Death Valley and the sinuous rock formations at Slot Canyons.

In the catalogue that accompanies the exhibition, art critic Farid Zahi characterizes Gerson’s photography as a “mystical intoxication” and the artist’s vision as “one in which unity is found in multiplicity.” Also in the catalogue, author and photographer Jay Dusard writes: “Allan is an abstractionist, a seeker of design, wherever is it to be found.”

My work is about about the interplay of light and shadow, and capturing an elusive, ephemeral, defining moment.” Gerson said. “I’m very honored and grateful to the Asilah Arts Festival organizers, and especially Mohammed Benaïssa, for the opportunity to exhibit my work at their extraordinary event.”

Accompanying the 22 photographs are 15 pieces of jewelry Gerson designed based on his own photographs. Included are cuff bracelets, pendants, earrings, brooches, belt buckles and cuff links whose designs echo the tracery windows of the King Hassan II Mosque and the sands of the Sahara.

Gerson is represented by Kaller Fine Arts (www.kallerfinearts.com). A fully illustrated, English/French/Arabic language catalogue with essays by Farid Zahi and Jay Dusard accompanies the exhibition.

The Asilah Arts Festival, established in 1978 by the Mohammed Benaïssa, Morocco’s former Minister of Culture, and Mohammed Melehi, is North Africa’s largest. It features artists and performers from dozens of countries and annually draws more than 100,000 attendees. The festival is held in the seaside resort of Asilah, a port town on the Atlantic just over 30 miles south of Tangiers, that was originally established as a Phoenician trading port circa 1500 B.C.

Media Only: Nord Wennerstrom Wennerstrom Communications
E: nord@wennerco.com

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Kaller Fine Arts News Blog

Today marks the inaugural installment of the Kaller Fine Arts blog. From time to time I will use this space to discuss events or people in the art world that readers may find interesting.

Yesterday I visited the studio of artist Sabre Esler in Atlanta, Georgia. Sabre is known to many of you as a painter of lyrical land and waterscapes, bustling city scenes and impressionist figurative work that straddle the line between abstraction and realism. What has always impressed me about her art is the very painterly quality of her brushwork. If you isolate large swathes of her canvases (which sometimes incorporate collage to add visual heft and depth) you see beautiful layered, loose strokes of color that stand on their own as investigations of how the application of paint can evoke atmosphere and perspective in an abstract way.

Last year, Sabre was influenced by travel and participation in art workshops to focus on breaking her work down into planes, with a resulting new group of work focusing on rooflines and cityscapes. The juxtaposition of moody brushwork and architectonics provides visual energy and tension in this new group of work.

Notable shifts in works around the studio since my last visit included larger canvases (a gorgeous new 60x60 waterscape will be wending its way to Kaller Fine Arts this week) and subtle color palette changes. Sabre, like many artists, enjoys working on a large scale. “It is a lot of fun to work large – I get to push a lot of paint around, and it becomes more about creating dynamics of color, and not as much about what an object is,” she notes.

Sabre has plans for travel to Portugal and Burgundy in 2010. The oceans and vineyards of those countries should provide fodder for her constant artistic inquiries into how to suggest atmospheric qualities through the application of paint.