Excessive Frugality

15 Dec 2017 – 30 Dec 2017

New York
New York, United States


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The unassuming flotsam and jetsam that gets kicked up in the studio when making "real " artwork, takes center stage with Excessive Frugality.


These "treasures" have none of the cool remove that oftentimes a series of works can take on. No, these are the beloved orphans that are often strewn throughout their studios, secreted away under dust.

These treasures are forged from years of frugality, where every scrap often carries meaning, is beautiful, and ripe with possibilities. Valuable pigments, beloved ragged edges, instant sculptures, keeping the mind and hand ever alert to new potential in their materials. It's a party for the eyes and the imagination.

Jeff Becker The CapaCity Project started as a response to his inability to recycle plastic caps and container lids. It soon grew to include all things plastic that couldn't be recycled. At one time Becker was able to take this material to be turned into plastic park benches. Then the company that made the benches went out of business. It was too late anyway. The collection had grown and encompassed more than plastic. Metal jar lids, the egg cartons that my neighbors no longer needed since the chickens had become their dinner, a pile of phone books, and the wooden crates from all the clementines consumed over 18 years comprised the mountain in the basement. The concept had shifted a bit. It was now more about how much 'trash' one frugal and anti-consumptive person generates. By making it visual, it showed how truly monumental this issue is, especially when you multiply by 7 billion consumers. Business, government, and industry compound the problem. This is one man's city of refuse, comprised of castoffs from life in the 21st Century. How much more can our small blue planet absorb? Michele Brody Brody focuses on the creation of site-generated works of art that illuminate the unobserved in our day to day surroundings and the challenges facing our environment.The artist is intrigued by the process of creating a controlled environment where the work organically develops and changes over time. This form of artistic creation represents the constant state of entropy we live in, and how the delicate characteristics of memory and time can both erode and enhance our interpretations of experience. On view for Excessive Frugality are a series of Paper Cones produced after draining out the pulp left over from making paper. The pulps are from a range of projects, which use various types of fibers. The natural flax, cotton, and abaca cones are mainly from her “Drawing Roots” series, which incorporates the sprouting of seeds as a form of mark making. The hand-dyed pulps are from experiments with watermarking, and the more rough textured pulps of oolong tea, rye grass, and onion skin are from a new series titled “ Papers of Place.” All of these works are part of a studio process based on maintaining sustainable living practices within an environment that have been irrevocably altered by human industrialism. Airco Caravan After a successful career in advertising, the wish to create art became more and more urgent, so the decision was made to be a fulltime artist. Besides working with screen printing and a study in oil painting at the Art Students League of New York, she was invited to several artist residencies. Since then many group and solo shows followed. Caravan also works as curator and organizer of art fairs and fundraisers. She is the founder of Nasty Women Amsterdam, a fundraiser for women’s rights, and became involved in this worldwide Nasty Women movement that started in New York. As a painter, Airco is fascinated by death and murder, questioning the human nature. Why do people take another person’s life? Trying to figure out where the boundaries lie between love and hate, life and death. ‘Made in China’ is a project that drew a lot of attention; without knowing, 16 Chinese painters in China, each painted one part of the illegal portrait of the Dalai Lama. The 16 parts were brought together outside China as a symbol of peace and unity. Airco Caravan lives, sings and works in Amsterdam and New York.

Rob de Oude A studio practice leads to various ways of coming to terms with the materials we incorporate in our processes as artists. Part of Rob de Oude's process is utilized tape, especially on the larger paintings and wall drawings. As an automatic gesture, while removing tape from a surface the artist ends up shaping this into a ball. For no particular reason other then it being easier to collect for trash. But, after doing so he finds it difficult to actually throw these shapes away, thus ending up with an accumulation of tape balls. These now are records of past paintings and projects with their own surface and color and function for him as an extended memory. The numbered tape lines are a record keeping element in his paintings. They translate to a rhythm and repetition of an accumulative process and are the guiding lo-fi software while building up the linear based paintings. He sticks them on the side of his painting rig to keep track of where to place his painting guide. They have no particular meaning other than being variations of potential layers of lines in a specific painting process. Rob de Oude studied painting, sculpture and art history at the Hoge School voor de Kunsten in Amsterdam and SUNY Purchase, NY. He has had solo exhibition in the US and abroad, notably at Galerie Gourvennec Ogor in Marseille, France, DM Contemporary, New York, NY and Guest Spot in Baltimore, MD. Recent participations in group exhibition have been at Museum de Lakenhal in Leiden,NL, McKenzie Fine Art, New York, NY and Galerie Hüsam in Offenbach, GR. De Oude has been featured in the NY Post, L Magazine, Artnet Magazine, NYArts Magazine, The New Criterion, Brooklyn Magazine, Bushwick Daily, ARTNews, amongst others. He lives and has his studio in Brooklyn, NY, and is founding member and co-director of the Brooklyn based curatorial collectiveTransmitter. Diane Englander A native New Yorker, Diane had an earlier career including 17 years as a management consultant to local nonprofits concerned with poverty or disenfranchisement; work in NYC government; and several years as a lawyer at a large NYC law firm. In late 2006 Diane began making collages that started her on her current path; in late 2007 she left her consulting job to focus on her artwork full-time, and to study with Bruce Dorfman at the Art Students League in New York. She has had solo exhibits including those at the University of Connecticut, U. Mass. Amherst, and the Living Room Gallery at Saint Peter’s Church in Manhattan, as well as pieces in group shows in New York City, elsewhere in the US, and in Italy. One of her drawings appears in The Visual Language of Drawing (2012). In 2012 she attended the Vermont Studio Center with an artist’s grant. In 2013 she won the Allied Artists of America award at the Butler Institute of American Art. Englander works with formal means to create a place between discord and tranquility, a zone with a charged harmony that energizes as it also provides refuge. That search means she has to attack the prettiness of an initial surface, avoid balance, court darkness or stridency, investing a work with conflict. Some of her efforts, which began with collaged surfaces only subtly alluding to three dimensions, have moved more firmly into space. With multiple layers of paper, gouges to the surface, or materials that are unambiguously three dimensional. Inspiration from the world that we don't call art also calls her: a wall, a landscape, a window shade transfused with light, a stretch of sand and shadow. (And of course echoes from other artists, Burri, Vicente, Tapies, Motherwell, Rauschenberg, medieval cloisonné, Vermeer, Breughel, and others.) Emily Feinstein Emily Feinstein grew up with a father who was a cabinetmaker with a shop in the basement. She spent a lot of time making things and constructing with wood. Her ongoing interest in raw materials and the structures we build and use in the every day stem largely from this. There’s often a suggestion of use, whether it be the actual material or the structure itself. Scale is important to her work in that it evoke a connection and intimacy with the viewer. Most of the wood is found on the street or scraps from the studio or cabinet making shops. The red and white forms are taken from wooden street barricades. Emily Feinstein received her M.F.A. at Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College. She has had her sculpture and installations included in exhibitions in numerous galleries in NYC and at Socrates Sculpture Park, Katonah Museum, Islip Art Museum, Long Island University, the Brooklyn Public Library and Governors Island. Feinstein has also been awarded residencies at Macdowell Colony, Yaddo, Blue Mountain Center and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Grants and awards include Change Inc., the Adolph Gottlieb Emergency Grant, and Center for Contemporary Performance Art. She was selected Artist of the Month by Artist Space Online Forum. Reviews of her work have been featured in the New York Times by Roberta Smith, Ken Johnson, and Grace Gleuck.


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