Back in Town

John Retallack’s photo of book artist Scott McCarney
at the
Link Gallery, 30 Church Street, in downtown Rochester, New York

At City Hall on Church Street, there is the Link Gallery, a hallway exhibition space recently inhabited by photos from John Retallack.  John worked for many years at Rochester Institute of Technology as a professor in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences and only a few years ago published a book of portraits ( I was one of them ) titled: “Colleagues”, written with my friend Anne C. Coon.  John is a highly skilled studio photographer and the interesting thing about this show is that his photos are often diptychs – pairs of images that are related, and this broadens the story that they tell.
For example, there is a host of photos of war veterans, and the pairing of photos often shows the way they look today with a photo of them as a younger person.  Instantly, we look for similarities in the face, and then we look for the differences – and how they have changed!  I also like some of his informal shots of a simple fence half buried in sand.
John Retallack at Link Gallery

Wm. A. Root 
at Warren Phillips, 1115 East Main Street, Rochester, NY

Warren Phillips, who has a frame shop and gallery attached just moved into my studio building – The Hungerford – at 1115 East Main Street, and opened a curious show titled “Assemblage”.  I stopped in to see these works by artist William A. Root and I found the art engaging and playful, and this show brought out similarities between these predominantly wood forms and the combinations that Louise Nevelson used to show when she was alive in New York City.  When I asked about Mr. Root, I was told that for years he made window displays, and he has been a part of the art community here for years, but this is the first time that I have seen a show of these sculptures, and they have a strong modernist impulse – I could imagine an artist like Picabia making paintings of similar constructions.
Emily Glass in the “Faculty Show”,  The Bevier Gallery
at Rochester Institute of Technology

The School of Art, is represented in the Faculty Exhibition, at the Bevier Gallery in Booth Building of R.I.T. and a visitor is drawn to the far wall of the show where there hangs a large painting of two massive frogs by the artist Emily Glass.  They are a bit gothic, without being a menace, and they are convincingly painted.  A few other birds and animals caught my eye including a wonderful little painting of a screech owl by Robert Dorsey ( see below ), and a drawing of an egret by Bill Finewood.
Painting by Robert Dorsey
Denton Crawford had a lively painting of hanging feathers, and next to that was a series of caricatures of the Beatles by Jay Lincoln.  There was also a parade of figure drawings from Keith Howard, who is better known for his leadership in the Non-Toxic Printmaking world, but Keith has taught figure drawing for many years and all that practice shows.
The Beatles by Jay Lincoln
at the Bevier Gallery to January 9, 2015
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