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Current Exhibition: Pivotable Axes: Sarah Bednarek and Nichole van Beek @ Flecker Gallery. Selden, NY.

A two-person exhibition of sculptures by Sarah Bednarek and paintings by Nichole van Beek will be featured at Suffolk County Community College’s Flecker Gallery from February 9 – March 7, 2017. The exhibition’s opening reception will be on Feb. 9 from 1-3 p.m.

Pivotal Axes sets the stage for a dialogue between two artists who are largely concerned with form, geometry, and the abstract, but also who also believe that these concerns carry meaning that has social and political implications. This is a thought provoking exhibition; a collection of exquisitely made objects and images that call into question the role of the hand-made and the individual in a time of extreme consumerism, as well as the role of perception in an age where truth is increasingly elusive. These artists works are imbued with subtle elements and clues, revealing themselves fully only to the sensitive viewer engaging in slow, thoughtful, and contemplative ways of seeing.

Nichole van Beek earned her BFA from The Cooper Union in 1998 and her MFA from The University of California, Santa Barbara in 2007. She is represented by Jeff Bailey Gallery in Hudson, NY and has exhibited work at Geoffrey Young Gallery (Great Barrington, MA), Morgan Lehman Gallery (New York, NY), Interstitial (Seattle, WA), and Ortega y Gasset and The Parlour Bushwick in Brooklyn, among other spaces. In 2016 she received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant to attend the Vermont Studio Center. She was also the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts grant in painting in 2012, and in 2011 she participated in Socrates Sculpture Park Emerging Artist Fellowship. She has taught in the Intensive English Program at Pratt Institute since 2012. She lives and works in Queens, NY.

Sarah Bednarek earned her BFA from the University of Minnesota in 2002 and her MFA from the Sculpture and Extended Media program at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2005. Her exhibition record includes solo, curated, and group shows, both nationally and internationally with recent shows at the Thomas Hunter Project Space, Hunter College (New York, NY), ADA Gallery (Richmond, VA), ruSalon (Brooklyn, NY), Yashar Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), The Parlor (Brooklyn, NY), Zurcher Gallery (New York, NY), and Mulherin + Pollard (New York, NY). She has received awards and scholarships in support of her art including recent residencies at Hunter College, and the Sculpture Space Residency (Utica, NY). Bednarek is a cancer survivor and lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

The exhibition will feature a full-color catalog with an essay by NewYork-based artist and critic Karen Schiff, as well as an extended dialogue conducted by both artists.

Please contact the gallery for directions, to schedule an appointment, or to request a catalog.

Flecker Gallery
Suffolk County Community College
533 College Road, Selden, NY 11784
Monday – Thursday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and by appointment

High-resolution photos:

Media Contact:
Drew Biondo
631-403-0414 (Cell)

Pivotal Axes: Sarah Bednarek and Nichole van Beek Catalogue download

Current Exhibition: Peter Shear. Editions of You. devening projects. Chicago, IL.

Thread Count (2016) acrylic on canvas, 10 × 8 inches

Thread Count (2016)
acrylic on canvas, 10 × 8 inches


Peter Shear
Editions of You
devening projects
3039 West Carroll
Chicago, IL 60612

Peter Shear’s Open Paintings

“On the day when I know all the emblems,” he asked Marco, “shall I be able to possess my empire, at last?” And the Venetian answered: “Sire, do not believe it. On that day you will be an emblem among emblems.”
— Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities

Once, when Peter Shear and I were discussing an earlier exhibition of his non-painted works at Indiana University, he offered a curious justification for his installation decisions: “I suspected a poetics.” Indeed, Shear’s small paintings at Devening Projects, on first look, might appear suspiciously simplistic. A squiggle here, a brushy wash there; where hard-edge forms profess a certain amount of confidence, their cratered, lumpy surfaces belie the self-assurance of the shape’s border. Images that might convey grandiosity painted on canvases measured in feet rather than inches instead seem to barely assert themselves, brush strokes often failing to reach the canvas edge. Shear also doesn’t seem interested in developing a specific range of pictorial inquiry—rather than tuning a handful of ideas to their sharpest tenor, he seems to move on to a novel approach each time he has the gist of the work jotted down onto canvas.

This is an important distinction. Shear’s works feel like ideas of paintings. They are certainly not studies, however: they are too closely attuned to the compositional tipping point on which they balance, too intimately aware of their own scale, too unconcerned with ambition. Rather, they work more like the half-conscious dreams you might have when you are still falling asleep, or like the uncertainty of peripheral vision. Shear is an insightful improviser, more akin to the continually inventive, blissed-out jam band than to the ear-piercing licks of rock and roll superstars. The zigzags, washes, and lumpy deposits are just ideas—sweet nothings and pillow talk—and have only just entered the first moments of form. But ideas, full of the promise of potentiality without the disappointments of actuality, can be beautiful things. Shear preserves this natal moment, one that most painters disguise.

Like any poet or painter worthy of the name, Shear understands the significance of small decisions. Even as he strives for images that compel our attention, the striving is never concealed. However, Shear’s poetics is hardly a simplified romanticism: it is bound up with suspicion. The paintings have, as he puts it, “just enough criticality,” just enough awareness. Shear’s achievement (though ‘achievement’ is too strong a word, too finalized a notion to comfortably partner with Shear’s work) is this delicate balance of poetics and suspicion. While each painting is strangely compelling, each works in a different way. This alone is a significant accomplishment, since most painters find a few mechanisms they understand and then repeat and refine them, but it is also essential to Shear’s suspect poetics. Shear maintains the open potentiality of painting in the works he presents us (for which ‘finished’ and ‘unfinished’ are hardly appropriate terms). The images may seek the status of emblems, but unlike most signs and symbols, Shear’s paintings never pretend to be anything other than made, anything other than possible. Shear titrates poetics and suspicion, beauty and criticality, completeness and incompleteness, into a delicate alchemical mixture that is continually revealing.

-Brian T. Leahy

A self-taught painter and occasional organizer of exhibitions, Peter Shear has exhibited across the United States and Europe, most recently alongside Ellen Siebers in Basic Instinct at FJORD, Philadelphia; Matthew Wong in Good Bad Brush at The Occasional Gallery, Burlington, Washington; and Katelyn Eichwald at Alter Space, San Francisco. Recent group exhibitions include Dek Hed, curated by Ross Simonini at The Thing Quarterly, San Francisco; Bring Something Pink, curated by Yifat Gat at Espace Despalles, Paris; and The Black & White Project at Transmitter, Brooklyn, NY. Other past exhibitions include the solo shows Family Resemblance at ATM, Austin; Dragon Express at Welcome Screen and Peer Review at the Imperial College of London; Drops of Jupiter at Bannerette and The Double Down, curated by Trudy Benson and Jason Stopa at Trestle Gallery, Brooklyn; Reason and Romance curated by Alain Biltereyst at 6b Gallery, Elingen, Belgium; and Transposed Planes at LVL3, Chicago. Peter Shear lives in Bloomington, Indiana.

Current Exhibition: Structure For Seeing. Ty Smith @ Birmingham Southern College. Birmingham, Al.

Structure For Seeing
Jürgen Tarrash & Ty Smith / Two Person Exhibition
January 6 – 26, 2017
Reception: Friday, January 13, 6-8PM
Durbin Gallery at
Birmingham-Southern College
900 Arkadelphia Road
Birmingham, AL 35254

Opening reception will be held in the gallery on Friday, January 13, from 6-8 pm. The exhibition and opening are free and open to the public. For more information please visit


Upcoming Exhibition: The Flat Files: Year 4 @ TSA NY. Brooklyn, NY.

(Clockwise from top left): Matt Smith Chávez-Delgado, Mark Joshua Epstein, Monica Carrier, Liz Collins, Erika Ranee, Joey Parlett, Cole Lu, Echo Eggebrecht.

(Clockwise from top left): Matt Smith Chávez-Delgado, Mark Joshua Epstein, Monica Carrier, Liz Collins, Erika Ranee, Joey Parlett, Cole Lu, Echo Eggebrecht.


TSA NY: The Flat Files: Year 4
December 9th – 18th
Reception: Friday, December 9th, 6pm – 9pm

TSA is pleased to present an exhibition to celebrate the launch of our 2016 – 2017 Flat File program, which includes work by 33 artists chosen from an open call that attracted a diverse range of artists. The selected artworks represent a wide array of approaches towards flat media. Drawing, collage, printmaking, and photography have been deployed in radically different manners. In many cases the selected works are emblematic of an artist’s core enterprise, while for some this work represents a surprising departure from a larger creative project. The small-scale format becomes an elastic site for play and exploration.

During this exhibition and throughout the year visitors are welcome to browse and purchase artworks from the flat file. Individual pieces from the Flat File program will be selectively highlighted throughout the year. As of December 9th, all works can be viewed online at

The 2016-2017 Flat File features works by: William Brayton, Monica Carrier, Liz Collins, Jonathan Cowan, Matt Smith Chávez-Delgado, Don Doe, Echo Eggebrecht, Brian Edmonds, Sandra Erbacher, Mark Joshua Epstein, Alyssa E Fanning, Matthew Neil Gehring, Elizabeth Gilfilen, Eric Hibit, Cary Hulbert, Will Hutnick, Michael Gac Levin, Cole Lu, Daina Mattis, Lawrence Mesich, Really Large Numbers (Julia Oldham and Chad Stayrook), Joey Parlett, Elvia Perrin, Rebecca Murtaugh, Erika Ranee, James Reeder, Jason Rohlf, Carrie Rubinstein, Matthew Shelley, Jaclyn Wright, Polly Yim, Patricia Zarate, Brian Zegeer.

TSA New York is an artist-run and curated exhibition space located in Bushwick, Brooklyn and part of the Tiger Strikes Asteroid network of artist-run spaces. We invite a dialogue between an eclectic mix of artists and curatorial visions with a focus on emerging artists from New York and beyond. Our exhibitions have been featured in numerous print and online publications including the Huffington Post, L Magazine, Bushwick Daily, Artinfo, Artnet News, Beautiful Decay, and the New York Times.

Tiger Strikes Asteroid New York
1329 Willoughby Ave, #2A
Brooklyn, NY 11237

Hours: Saturdays and Sundays 1 PM – 6 PM and by appointment
Phone: (347) 746-8041

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Current Exhibition: Channelizing: Rachael Gorchov and Jon Cowan @ Flecker Gallery. Selden, NY.


Channelizing: Rachael Gorchov and Jon Cowan
November 10 – December 8, 2016
Opening reception from 1:00-3:00 PM. A gallery talk with the artist will begin shortly after introductory remarks.

Flecker Gallery
Suffolk County Community College
533 College Road, Selden, NY 11784 / 631-451-4093
Monday – Thursday 10AM – 4PM and by appointment

Seeing Beyond the Limits of Sight

Matthew Neil Gehring

Channel is both a noun and a verb with several usages, all of which describe pathways or the action along them: a narrow nautical pass, a means or path of communication, a band of frequencies sufficient to carry radio, to express, to funnel, or direct movement. The title of this exhibition, Channelizing, sets an appropriate point of departure for entering a dialogue with the works of Rachael Gorchov and Jonathan Cowan. Both artists speak of their works as a means of departing from the familiar path of thought, experience, and knowledge. Both channel the subsequent de-stabilization into artworks that re-frame perceptual reality. About her work, Gorchov states “The various elements of the artworks frame and obscure one another, de-familiarizing omnipresent, ordinary environments.” About his work, Cowan expresses that idea the work is a “re-staging of tradition that seeks to de-familiarize what we think we know.”

Gorchov’s work from a few years prior seems much more closely tied to an interest in the architecture of suburban spaces, with forms that are often geometric and painted surfaces inflecting those references with simultaneously overlaid pastiches of both art history and the environments themselves; palm trees, for example, or a riff on mid-century, painterly abstraction. In her most recent work she has shifted from these more concrete sources towards the abstract. These new works are foregrounded by a series of sculptures that involve singular, painted, rock-like forms, also familiar to suburban landscape. The forms seem to cast elongated shadows that are not really shadows, but extensions of the corporeal, painted surfaces of the rock-form. Shadows, are immaterial – perhaps the closest things in our physical experience to a pure abstraction – but Gorchov apprehends them and imbues them with substance. They extend the painterly surface, but they are not painted. They are slick digital prints on vinyl sheets of paintings originally made on paper, which extend from the base of their “source” objects and move across the floor and often creep up the walls. Gorchov is synthesizing real and imagined, material and immaterial, past and present. These works, such as “Five or Six” and “Concrete Garden”, are particularly enigmatic. Because primary elements of these works are the apprehended cast shadows, they contain both the potential for expansion, contraction, or directional changes. Scale becomes fluid and the work takes on the characteristic that it presents us with one fleeting moment of an infinite set of possibilities. The pieces aforementioned are included in this catalog, but the scale has been expanded for this exhibition.

Gorchov’s wall sculptures jettison the apprehended shadow and break open the three-dimensional form to expose the interior as the primary, but not the only focus of the work. These works, such as “Three O’Clock”, flirt with genre painting – landscape and still-life painting in particular, as the largely abstract painting on the concave interior surfaces seem to evoke or suggest flora within the confines of the spaces, which are also vessels. The space is unlike pictorial space, however, in that it is concave with an interior, and as such provides distinctly different possible viewing experiences. From a distance, we see and interact with a three dimensional object at a distance, from it’s exterior. Up close, standing in “the sweet spot” you can immerse yourself in the panoramic inner life of the same form.

Jonathan Cowan makes paintings that look nothing like a traditional painting. Beginning with watercolor studies on paper, Cowan paints grand open landscapes on raw canvas with acrylic stains, creating cottony-soft, vibrant yet dark, ghost-like scenes. These sweeping vistas are the archetype of the sublime; the same type of spaces that found Turner feverishly sketching in them and that Caspar David Friedrich made his mainstay. But they are facsimiles, the implicit sincerity, romance, and richness of their art historical precedents in oil are replaced by a thin translucent copy, an appropriation of a vision whose sincerity is perhaps less resonant now than it was when it was new. They are also infused with an apparent pixelation, a result of the transfer and staining processes themselves combined with the choice of a canvas substrate that has a pronounced grid in its weave.

Further reinforcing a less-than optimistic point of view, one that suggests that the sublime in art might be a relic of the past that is not wholly possible in our insincere present, is the fact that this is just a backdrop for the main event. Each of Cowan’s canvases are also meticulously embroidered, creating overlaid stitched forms, chromatic bands and vortexes that hover above the spaces and seem to suggest inter-dimensional worm-holes, as in “Void in a Form Over a Flood” or prismatic auroras, as in “Ribbon”. They have the unmistakable feeling of a mystical, rapturous event. They also carry a kind of analog distortion – the kind kids of the 80’s experienced when we tried to watch cable channels our parent’s didn’t subscribe to. This limited access, provided only slipping glimpses of things that weren’t meant for us.

Both Gorchov and Cowan present us with work that evokes a kind of longing, a need to grasp that which is just beyond our reach, to see beyond the limits of sight, and they do so by manifesting a kind of abstract-surrealism; a space where the limits of both our perceptual experience and our consciousness ultimately become the primary emphasis and the subject of the work. Each is creating alchemy of the moment, both internal end external. All of this is an embodiment of process, material, image, and vision working in discordant harmony. This is a channeling; a synthesis that is poignant and filled with vivacity at this moment in history.

Matthew Neil Gehring is a painter and curator who lives and works in Queens, NY. He is an Associate Professor of Art and the Director of the Flecker Gallery at Suffolk County Community College, Ammerman Campus.


Download the catalogue here.

Please Consider Helping Artist Cristina Muniz.


So I was embarrassed to share this photo at first but I have nothing to be embarrassed about. I very recently got news I had been living with a chronic illness for over half my life. I have a combo of lyphedema and lypedema both are irreversible and there is no cure. The best thing is early detection so that it can be contained and not grow. In my case, as with many others, it was misdiagnosed repeatedly. Today treatment started that involves foam padding wrapping. I barely fit into the very large sweats and barely able to drive myself home. I didn’t get a photo of the pants on but I looked huge. I realized my legs were that size because of the wrapping and how lucky I am that I am not worse off like other women battling this disease. I am currently having to miss work due to mobility constraints (getting used to wraps) and will start a fund to hopefully raise enough money to purchase custom compression garments for my both legs and also my arms!! I am hopeful I will soon feel better with more treatment. To be able to have less pain and more function and maybe smaller arms would be so amazing.

Cristina Muniz

Cristina’s Go Fund Me page

(816) 694-682


Current Exhibition: Incisive Fantasy, curated by Ann Stoddard. Elizabeth Stone Harper Gallery, Presbyterian College. Clinton, SC.




Incisive Fantasy
Elizabeth Stone Harper Gallery
Harper Center for the Arts, Presbyterian College, Clinton, SC
September 8 – November 19, 2016

Admission is free and open to the public.
Gallery Hours: Wednesday – Thursday, 12-5 PM

The Elizabeth Stone Harper Gallery, located in the Harper Center for the Arts, is pleased to announce the following exhibition:
Incisive Fantasy, a group invitational exhibition featuring works by artists Rosaire Appel of New York City; Charles Clary of Conway, South Carolina; Anne Herbert of Tuscaloosa, Alabama; Karen Seapker of Nashville, Tennessee; and Kirk Stoller of San Francisco, California.

Incisive Fantasy presents the recent work of five nationally recognized artists that expand the notion of abstraction as catalyst for idiosyncratic and unexpected visual explorations. Going beyond the time-honored traditions of formalization and reduction, these works draw the viewer into self-contained, phantasmagorical theaters of invention and fancy. Included are Rosaire Appel’s playfully reconfigured semantic musings and abstract narratives, Charles Clary’s hypnotic, swirling paperboard voids embedded in remnants of broken sheetrock, Anne Herbert’s deeply layered veils of experiential and painterly uncertainty, Karen Seapker’s brilliant and cavernous dreamscapes of mercurial brushstrokes, and Kirk Stoller’s whimsical three-dimensional balancing acts of humor.

The Harper Center Gallery is host to four exhibitions annually—two exhibitions of work from nationally/internationally recognized artists, the Senior Art Major Exhibition, and the Annual Student Exhibition. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Saturday from 12:00–5:00pm; admission to the gallery is free.

Presbyterian College is located on a striking 240-acre campus between Columbia and Greenville, South Carolina. Offering challenging academics and a culture of honor and ethics that prepares students to be leaders in their communities, PC students benefit from an exceptional faculty who take an individual interest in their students’ well-being, both personally and in the classroom. The Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy opened in 2010 and is dedicated to the ideals of leadership, honor to the profession, and service to the community.

For more information about Presbyterian College, visit
Press Contact: Ann Stoddard, College Curator,




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