Whitfield Lovell: First Impressions | August 2015 Exhibition
Willie Birch – Seen and Unseen: Coupling | August 2015 Exhibition at Arthur Roger Gallery
This is Bruce Davenport, Jr.’s second exhibition with the gallery. The four large-scale works are tributes to renowned heavyweight boxer champion Muhammad Ali. Each vivid color marker drawing, rendered in the artist’s celebrated style, is a variation of a common composition – an aerial view of a boxing match. Featured in the ring are the referee, Ali, and his opponent – Floyd Patterson, George Foreman, “Smokin’ Joe” Frazier among others. Surrounding the ring are meticulously rendered rows with throngs of spectators. Bordering this narrative are snapshots of Ali in action, along with memorable quotes such as, “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” and “Your hands can’t hit what your eyes can’t see.”
Willie Birch has always been a storyteller, sharing with us his observations of everyday objects and imagery that have had a direct impact on him, and subtly extracting the patterns and symbology inherent within. Recently, the artist has begun to specifically examine the interconnections between the examined elements and how, when coupled together, the initial meanings expand and create yet another layer – a language both seen and unseen. Birch explores the uses of spacing, repetition, geometry, and proportion to communicate how our unique modes of expression as a people identify us as individuals and as a community.
Whitfield Lovell: First Impressions is the artist’s third exhibition with the gallery. Included are the celebrated, bold assemblages of charcoal drawings on vintage wood paired with multivalent objects collectively illuminating the African American experience. Also exhibited, for the first time, are the artist’s lithograph prints – exquisitely detailed visages on wood veneer, vellum and vintage wallpaper flecked with floral and decorative patterns.
Muhammad Ali was one of the most photographed figures of the 20th century. Well known are the images of the braggart, the charmer, the ferocious fighter, however this exhibition of nine medium-scale photographs by Gordon Parks captures a softer side of the boxer – relaxed and introspective – further revealing Parks’ ability to connect with the people he photographed and the implicit trust between subject and photographer.
June 1984 Exhibition at Arthur Roger Gallery
Installation views from David Bates: Coastal Paintings, May 2015 Exhibition at Arthur Roger Gallery
Installation views of Amer Kobaslija – April 2015 exhibition at Arthur Roger@434.
Coastal Paintings is David Bates’ eighth exhibition with the gallery and consists of small- to large-scale oil paintings on canvas and panel. Employing his distinctive bold style, Bates continues to document the people and landscapes of the Gulf Coast. His portraits of fishermen and coast natives avow his esteem for his subjects and their absolute fortitude. Like them, his striking landscapes evoke a quiet solitude, yet often with hints of recovery from or preparation for more ominous times. Equally resilient and captivating are the Magnolias and other flora realized by his characteristic and masterful thick, lush strokes.