|Mixed groups of individual works are a staple of this year's Mohawk Hudson Regional.|
|Charles Geiger's oil on linen Cactus|
received the top award at this year's Regional.
The main theme is climate, though numerous works unrelated to that theme are also included. A total of 92 pieces by 83 artists made the cut (many more artists than usual, but still maintaining a high level of quality). One result of that selection is that very few artists are represented by more than one piece. Instead, the show is largely organized in ensembles that build relationships and contrasts among the individual artists' works. While this approach can set your head to spinning, and may always not honor each artist sufficiently, it does make for a stimulating and rich presentation.
|Rebecca Murtaugh is represented in the Regional|
by a group of five ceramic sculptures.
|Jane Feldblum's mixed-media Winter Garden|
is displayed on an antique chair at the Hyde.
It's worth noting that Palermo's selections seem to include more three-dimensional work than most Regionals (no surprise there, as she is a sculptor herself), and far fewer photographs than usual (a bit confounding, as I have no reason to think she is biased against that medium). The photo-based works she chose lean toward the abstract, colorful, and process-oriented - just one is a straight, black-and-white landscape print.
|John Yost's three-monitor video portrait|
re-creates the look of 19th-century photography.
|Scott Brodie's acrylic on canvas|
Project Lamentation Discard:
Decommissioned after Electric Shock
is oddly sentimental.
But curation is, of course, necessary. And, properly done, it can avoid the pitfall of undermining the individual pieces for the sake of a more overarching vision. I think this show reaches far, but still gives the individual artists enough room to breathe, enough space in which to be taken in directly by the viewer. That said, the viewer will need to take the time and effort to allow that interaction to happen.
|Ryan Parr's oil on canvas Green Wall|
transforms its subject using scale and perspective.
I was struck this week to realize that I've witnessed nearly half of the rather long history of the Regional (including a period in which I submitted regularly and was included often). In light of that extended view, I can state without a doubt that this Regional represents quite a robust peak in local artistic output. Perhaps, as the main theme might suggest, artists are inspired by a sense of urgency. Or maybe this is just a good place to be if you want to pursue art, which is never an easy task. Whatever the reason, it is cause for celebration.
Go, enjoy the show and, in particular, keep an eye out for more from this very impressive lineup of creators, who also just happen to be your neighbors.
|This group of prints and paintings, organized around the theme of landscape,|
is part of the 84th Annual Regional at The Hyde Collection.