The full blown quakes shaking the current discourse surrounding Niki Johnson’s Eggs Benedict, reached me as a mere tremor aftershock, a rumor of spectacular occurrence. I witnessed the aftermath of Johnson’s creatively seismic work during the day session of Gallery Night Spring 2013. Astounded, I expected to like the piece not to have my afternoon taken over by it.
Debra Brehmer, gladly spending some time with her patrons, candidly observed of Johnson’s piece a quality indescribably awe inspiring, a gestalt nearly impossible to render in contemporary art. Brehmer, Portrait Society Gallery’s Director, profoundly noted that the weaving technique Johnson used to ensnare Pope Benedict’s image mimics fine needle point work made so often from women’s hands; an irony for a woman’s craft to have created an irreverent iconic reference to an institution women have been so systematically subjugated within.
Depending on which side of Eggs Benedict pedestal display you approach from, you either feel duped or immediately captured. The portrait’s verso is exposed, revealing the tied medial regions and exposed openings of the many contraceptives. They are so carefully secured on the wire grid, in appearance, sloppy and awkward with no semblance of the intended likeness; a vestige of the personal made uncomfortably public. This window into Johnson’s artistic process demystifies the piece’s craft work, increasing its power.
Eggs Benedict by Niki Johnson on display at the Portrait Society Gallery, 2013
I stood with a couple hand fulls of people for much longer than you may traditionally imbibe an artwork, contemplating whether on a metaphysical level the Catholic church could oppose condoms as a mere object if not used for a contraceptive. Upon further deliberation, given that the portrait of Pope Emeritus Benedict referenced in Eggs Benedict originates from a group of press photos associated with his now infamous statement that condoms help spread AIDS in Africa, and the unequivocal prohibition of contraceptives of all forms in Catholic dogma, it is absolutely impossible to parse the medium from the message. In fact, in no more certain terms could the adage “The medium is the message” hold true.
The stage of Eggs Benedict will always be heightened by Pope Benedict’s historic resignation, an eerie stroke fate for Niki Johnson. I sincerely hope they meet someday in some realm. Johnson has put Eggs Benedict up for auction, with proceeds going to benefit AIDS research. The opening bid came in at $20 thousand.
Johnson’s Eggs Benedict secures a moment in art history for Milwaukee; the Portrait Society Gallery serving as the vessel to bring this piece into the art world internationally; April 19, 2013 its semi-official first public opening.
Eggs Benedict remains on display at the Portrait Society Gallery through July 28th, Thursday – Saturday 12 noon to 5p. It will join a series of Niki Johnson’s work opening June 6, 2013 entitled Sourcebook: Martha Wilson and MKE.
Rains drenched the week leading up to this spring’s Gallery Night in Milwaukee and a tornado warning. No worries there are plenty of great place to get stuck in the Third Ward tonight. Cohesion, would be the word that best describes what the Third Ward has achieved in the arts and entertainment lobe of its identity. A permanent scene has undoubtedly formed there to support the City’s high-end fine artists, its cornerstone sits on the intersection of Water and Buffalo Street at the Marshall Building.
Once an informal stash of professional artists and collectors, the building now supports an evolved and varied ecosystem of art and design disciplines. Some are highly recognizable like Reginald Baylor/Plaid Tuba and the Portrait Society. Others like Katie Gingrass are synonymous with fine art galleries in Milwaukee. All of the residents of the Marshall Building deserve notoriety.
Look Who’s Looking
Spring Gallery Night 2013 at the Marshall Building will feature 26 studios and galleries spread about all 7 levels of the building, making it very nearly an informal Contemporary Art museum. One highly anticipated show in particular at the Portrait Society Gallery will feature Nikki Johnson’s Eggs Benedict, a pixelated portrait of Emeritus Pope Benedict made entirely of colored condoms.
Another effort to look forward to comes from recent resident Marlene Hecht Simmons who lower level gallery features her own original paintings ranging in style from pop to portrait to folk. Phil Saxon’s work is also displayed there, a mixed media set that distilled something potentially neo-movement-like.
Timothy Meyerring appears to have quite an experience formulating in his first floor space Timo Gallery. If you don’t like his paintings which is really hard to do, there should be a little revelry to go with them to keep you engaged too.
From the Bottom Up
Gallery Night Spring 2013 kicks off tonight April 19, 2013. Most galleries are also open April 20 as well. Here are the who’s and where’s:
Milwaukee Potters Guild
Marlene Hecht Simmons
Elaine Erickson Gallery
Grotta & Co.
Blustein Brondino Gallery
The Fine Art Gallery
J. Nikolai Art
Too Much Metal
Christine Plamann Photography
C. Harbeck Object Conservation
CR Davidson Art
Portrait Society Gallery
In a wily move, the Coalition of Photographic Arts (CoPA) took over a traditional second floor office suite on upper Mason Street and turned it into a a multi-room gallery space for their 8th Annual Member’s Exhibition. CoPA, a contemporary photography guild, showcases and supports fine photographic arts of all styles.
CoPA member Kelly Crandall expressed that CoPA exists to support the photographer community in the Milwaukee area, and although a membership organization, it is open to amateur and professional photographers. Crandall’s work for CoPA’s current exhibition focuses on landscape and street photography, much of her subject matter being people and architecture. With no less than 50 individual pieces on display from a couple dozen CoPA members, the photographic styles demonstrated encapsulate a wide variety of applications of the medium.
In this exhibition, classic portrait, landscape, and nature photographs accompany technologically driven examples of perspective, enhanced and digitally altered photography. Some less conventional styles like photographic canvas wraps can also be witnessed at the current CoPA exhibition. This will be truly one of the most diverse photography exhibitions around town.
CoPA’s Gallery Night opening is tomorrow night from 4p – 9p Friday, April 19 and Gallery Day 11a – 4p, April 20 on the 2nd floor of 600 East Mason St. The 8th Annual CoPA Member’s Exhibition will continue Thursdays through Saturdays 12p – 6p from April 24 – May 3, 2013.
I’ll never get used to the receding daylight suffered by fall changing to winter. The premature darkness did allow the new inhabitants of Truly Spoken’s old space to feature their fine vintage replacement framed window glass under studio lighting. There’s a market around here for that huh? That’s the kind ingenuity you expect to see these days unfortunately. Nice to see someone making lemonade out of it.
Keeping with its long-suffering reputation as the hotbed for everything an urban cross-roads should have, Riverwest proudly watched one of its more established artist venues, Jackpot Gallery, open a new show titled Nicotine Bliss. The Jackpot Gallery show opened November 9th and helped demonstrate the robust bandwidth Milwaukee’s art scene has achieved; The Portrait Society Gallery’s unveiling happened to be on the same night attracting a whole different crowd.
via AnthonyMikkelson on YouTube
Unsel Fish Guild
Headlined by no-one in particular, 14 artist shacked up on Jackpots’ walls for Nicotine Bliss. Pieces touched on traditional forms of painting and print-making, and went guerrilla, pop and re-purposed.
Anthony Mikkelson minds the design spaces ACME and Used Car Studios shared his insights on the sights from his world and beyond. Several of his pieces presented illustrations of characters, objects and street-scapes endemic to urban areas. Channeling folk-artsiness for a few pieces, ACME scrawled deliberately on reused objects such as wood board and LP liners, leaving urban artifacts and relics of this current age.
Gregory Martens went ballistic depicting the end of days in series of prints that stopped time in several locales spread far and wide across the continents. As the rapture occurs, the sights, sounds, and amazement of that moment culminate in natural, celestial and symbolic realms colliding with known and unknown forces amidst the final cataclysm. Martens brings this world to our un-believing eyes applying print-making techniques to oversized paper.
A Matter of Medium
As much about the final product, as the method of reaching the consumable image, the works comprising the Nicotine Bliss installation all share the desire to go new places, off-canvas, and away from acrylic paint. Paul Kjelland really stood tall applying hand cut paper techniques.
With a precise razor blade, Kjelland took two very pop images of youth doing youthful things and simulated posterizing effects on them, with cuts leaving only the essential details of the image, then coloring them with a glazes of spray paint until the images looked as if they could be stills from A Scanner Darkly.
Contributing healthily to the Nicotine Bliss show also were Lindsay Marx (a painter of growing infamy), Brad Warsh, Lois Galvez, Levon Turner, Ahmad Kearney, Ella Dwyer, Max Senesac, Kellen Kroening, Jenna Wilson, Joshua Carol and Kate Luscher.
Nicotine Bliss tears down November 27th.
via FritsisNietzsche on YouTube
It’s her first, but highly unlikely that it’s her last. Nadia Smale has an art show coming up at Orcanine Abbey this Friday night titled Reincarnation. She has moxie and a proclivity for making cool stuff, as all artists do, with an eye for aesthetic and guts to take chances. How can you blame her? She’s not yet turned 18. Getting a few moments of pre-show reflection,artist and mentor Akua Oladunjoye shares this guest interview with Nadia for Local Trolley.
Akua Oladunjoye for Local Trolley: Thank you Nadia for welcoming this interview! It is a pleasure to sit down with you and hear your thoughts on your first upcoming art show: Reincarnation.
LT: Let’s dive right in. Why “Reincarnation” what does this word mean to you?
Nadia Smale: Everything needs a new start in life. People, art, music… why not it is a new generation.
LT: Did you ever think you would have this opportunity?
NS: It’s something I’ve always wanted. Down the line my first art [school] choice is MIAD. A special lady who was working with me took me to Milwaukee and I fell in love with the east side and saw their gallery and that was what I wanted [wink, wink], to have a show and be a part of their gallery.
LT: How long have you been doing art?
NS: Since kindergarten. It was required throughout elementary, middle and high school. I fell in love with it, that’s all.
LT: what motivates and inspires you to do art?
NS: I think of family members, friends, my cat and Akua who tags me along. My grandfather, dad and sometimes my mom inspire me to do art. My grandfather was a drawer. My dad likes to look at it and my mom thinks she is an artist, haaaa! I sent my dad a picture on his phone and that made me smile.
LT: Has art saved you?
NS: Yes, a lot. I had to keep a journal in school and when I wanted to write nasty things I didn’t. I would draw what I felt instead.
LT: What is your most enjoyable material to work with?
NS: Charcoal, it’s crazy but fun to work with. If it doesn’t work the way you plan it turns into something else. I enjoy that.
LT: What is the most difficult material you have ever worked with so far?
NS: Metal, when working on the metal rose it took a long time. Had to sketch it out then I worked with tin to make the petals using exotic curves, and I had to get the stem right. It took 3 months every day working on it to get it just right.
LT: What is your least favorite material to work with?
NS: Don’t have one, I wanted to get rid of a glass bowl [I made] that my mom has, but she loves it. I like working with all the mediums.
LT: You talked about your favorite bands and musicians, how do they, if at all, influence you and your art?
NS: Skrillex and other musicians can make the sounds flow in your body and you want to move, to take whatever is in your hand a paint brush or whatever and create, like water moving slowly when you actually do it, its maybe crazy just like you really are when you are listening.
LT: Is there something you want to add?
NS: I love doing art every single day, I create even if I am doodling in class. I like the tool in my hand, the smudges it’s life and nothing without it. Architecture, walls, roofs, food is culinary art outside the world everything is made of its own creation that’s what I like and want to do. That’s how I start something that matters… you know art.
Reincarnation, An Art Benefit for Jagged Edges by Nadia Smale opens Friday, October 26th at 6p in the Orcanine Abbey, 1718 N 1st Street, Studio 5N2. Free to the public, but donations are welcome to support Nadia’s pursuit of art education. There will also be a silent auction. Reincarnation is a participating exhibit of Tap the Potential, a series of art exhibitions to raise disability awareness.
Cramming activities into the last clement days of the year isn’t too difficult in Milwaukee and no neighborhood rises to the occasion quite like Bay View. There’s the South Shore Farmers Market and The Frolics. There was Pabst Fest and Bay View Bash, Art Beat, that other crap I’m missing, and now Bay View Gallery Night, which kicks off tomorrow night. Yes, a Gallery Night so cool it happens a full month before the rest of the City’s.
On the serrated butter knife’s edge of this madness, Made in Milwaukee and Alchemist Theatre safely press their pointy little teeth into Milwaukee’s penchant for creative to-do’s du jour. Bay View’s abundance of venues and pop-up cultural dioramas basically will allow you to just walk down KK without a plan. But here are a few places and artists to see.
They co-sponsor the night and will have photography of Shane Gardner on the walls and music of Todd Richards and the Surround Sound Experiment in the ether. What’s coolest about this stop? The Alchemist Theatre has a chic/cheeky dive concept lounge rarely open when no show is on-stage.
If you’re not sure about theatre, you can at least absorb one of the best social atmospheres Milwaukee has to offer without committing a couple hours to stage entertainment. If you like it enough, you can vamp back in for the Alchemist’s upcoming Hollowed Eve themed freak-you-out live theatrical production The Alchemist Eye.
Usually all sorts of craziness goes on at the Hide House like church services and improvised musical shows. Most of that will probably still be going on tomorrow night and among others Amanda Iglinski’s works will perch on the Hide House’s interior vertical planes as a part of the first floor display. She’s a tremendous pop artist with intriguing vision that melds social commentary to the craft of picking images, motifs and colors to blend.
Resident artist Jenie Gao will open her space to feature artwork of her contemporaries Steph Davies, Laura Macias Barrera, Zina Mussman, Rachel Quirk and live music.
Gao Gallery occasionally offers instructional art workshops. Stop by during Bay View Gallery Night and you’ll be able to screenprint a ready made design on one of your own garments or a T that you can purchase there. Jenie Gao’s star as a fine art purveyor is in full bloom and something to gaze upon for seeing what it looks like to go beyond just having talent in a particular medium.
Ink’s abound in this town, why stop now? I see calf tats are in. Shogun Tattoo & Body Piercing will wet their needles publicly for the grand ole’ first time, opening on BVGN’s expressive ocean swell. The Mil can’t get enough ink, how can you blame us, most of us live where our bodies are at the moment anyway.
The Rest Are The Best Anyway
If I were to drop a few more names for thirst quenching pit stops let’s jus throw Studio Lounge, Black Bird Bar, Boon and Crockett, Hector’s and Club Giribaldi out there arbitrarily. Bay View Gallery Night’s website has the full listing happenings complete with proper addresses and other vital information. I also hear that the new super brilliant Alterra will have a parking lot extavaganza of sorts to top it all with a mango.
People trickle in and out of Orcanine Abbey‘s most recent open studio, checking out Rachel Sutter-Smith‘s set of provocative illustrations depicting personages both fantastic and realistic; conceivably a few self-portraits delving into the depths of her own inner most spaces. A dude listlessly sits in an a brown high back chair waiting for what’s next.
A handful of unheroic but reasonably cool looking kids have exuded a practical chemistry that usually can being felt among good friends. In good spirits, they enjoy the stellar performance of two piece band Pepe le Moko warming up the jerry-rigged stage. Episodically creepy yet blissful strumming done, these reasonably cool kids Sally, Sam, John and Lars that happen to be from Worcester, Ma, take up musical arms and crank up some major throwback post hoc garage/art rock mania as Secret Lover.
Under a dim oozing red light, the front woman calls out “Poison Ivy”, her cue to her band mates to let the gear rip into a raucous fury that soon animates the listless dude to his feet for a better vantage point. Not playing nice, the drum lead (Sam) crashes his symbol to the floor several times, and the guitarist (John) snaps two guitar strings banging out riffs for Sally‘s volcanic pipes to drift upon heralding exuberant tributes to life and youth, with Lars consistently throbbing the low end. Seriously smashing.
Secret Lover @ Orcanine Abbey, Milwaukee, WI, July 8, 2012
The Dumb Over, Orcanine Alley, http://wp.me/p1hPwN-1iM
Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN) opened it’s Beyond the Canvas exhibition at Zimmerman Architectural Studios Friday night. The work presented in Beyond the Canvas featured a cadre of artists taking inspiration from the rejuvenation of the Menomonee Valley.
Their expressions took on a variety of mediums ranging from water color, collage, to photography created En Plein Air. Photographer and digital artist Sara Risley, whose submission won 2nd place in her category, and visual artist Edmund Mathews’ work captures attention, along with many other excellent art pieces.
Zimmerman Architectural Studios provided a tremendous venue for MARN’s Gallery Night event co-sponsored by the Menomonee Valley Partners and Friends of the Hank Aaron State Trail. Vacant for several years, the expansive brontosaurus fossil of a building, just South of I-94, housed the Milwaukee’s Retort Building at the turn of the turn of the 20th century. The Retort Building operated a bank of coal furnaces capturing gas that circulated through underground pipelines into the City’s manually lit street lanterns, to illuminate the night. Reconstructed by Zimmerman in 2011, the restored Retort Building brings a spark the Valley.
If you missed it during Doors Open Milwaukee, the second night of Beyond the Canvas takes place tonight and features a silent auction of all the work on display. Zimmerman Studios offers a spectacular example of historic preservation on a grand scale, a futuristic trip back in time.
MARN’s Beyond the Canvas is tonight Saturday October 22nd, 5:00-8:00pm at Zimmerman Architectural Studios, 2122 West Mt. Vernon Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53233.
(As a bonus you can peek in 4Seasons Skate Park on the way)
With significant inspiration present, growing an idea requires little space. Mark David Gray curator and resident artist of splashing new Studio 420b whips up his creative gumbo with this recipe. Born of a workspace less than 300 square feet, the gallery’s loosely carved and ample surface area now allows for nooks amenable to his artistic companions.
The raw and utilitarian stance of Studio 420b suits the theme of its current installation New Work. Adding intrigue to the theme, concrete floors hoist a sign proclaiming “All Hail Marx and Lennon” scribed in sharp-edged block letters emphasized with a profile portrait of the late John Lennon designed in pastels. It happens that one of the gallery’s artists is a Marx, Lindsay Marx.
A 50 times removed cousin of those other great Marx, using oil on canvas, Lindsay Marx explains her impressions of moments suspended by photography in the 1960′s. Her paintings adjust our perspective close enough to see the profoundness of mundanely human dramas beckoning attention, drowned out by the turmoil typically associated with the era of social change. Layering color tones, motifs, concepts and patterns, pictures of moments transform into paranormal events revealing unseen forces acting at that moment. Employing the same technique, other works divine the thoughts of the central subject matter. Exquisite, modest and sometimes eerie, Marx evokes all three with appreciated intent; nothing here perceived as weird for weird’s sake.
The World is a Marble
Perforating the main wall space, a series of small geometrically identical frames house intricately drafted illustrations by Sean Bodley. Having even the negative spaces amazingly formulated solely from strokes of a pen, Bodley demonstrates the art of constructing worlds on a fantastic scale. Glancing at craggy cliffs appearing inches tall you may notice minute human forms that, from their point-of-view, immediately and epically magnify everything around them to Grand Teton scale. Admittedly, Bodley relishes the fantasy genre brought mainstream by the Lord of the Rings motion picture trilogy. Executing with marksman precision, Bodley charts detailed maps of places existing somewhere between Milwaukee that place Atreyu tried to save, and River Styx. Expressing interest in the fantasy genre’s friendliest format, one of Bodley’s artistic channels transmits his current work in an illustrated novel entitled Guardians of Gaia.
Too busy settling the West or snatching what they could by guile or force, turn of the century rugged individuals had little time for art, unless they were making “Wanted” posters. Mark David Gray pays tribute to the period of settlement and gunslingers with several of his pieces currently covering Studio 420b walls. Ruddy sepia tones infuse age and subdued neon highlights kick pop appeal into visual renderings that pluck Teddy Roosevelt out of historical archives and place him into new contemporary interpretations. Bigger than the dimensions of the canvas that carries them, several of Gray’s precise works idolize the former President in an endearing but kindly mocking fashion. Others works more straight forward, do plain old justice to the man and the legend. Lacking remissness, Gray offers additional odes to other men or legends fitting the phonetic description “Marx” or “Lennon” for further ponder.
Treading a rare path, Gray’s serious demeanor betrays his engaging and open mind and manner; a mastermind behind a space that is truly hospitable to creativity. Milwaukee is fast going the way of “scenes”, yet here people come as they are, and work as they are. Through its atmosphere, Studio 420b takes the bit out of the mouth of being an artist. In the process, truly phenomenal art ferments.
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Non-Obvious takes on Big History through Little Eyes
In plain view under a curved lamppost with a conical fixture beaming down light, sits an endomorphic body-type mannequin postured upright on a wooden chair at the far end of a 20-foot table; it ominously presides over the diorama scenes intermittently placed over the balance of the wooden surface. The main action of Waldek Dynerman’s Train Project lives here. Curious on lookers begin to meander towards this area like cautious deer fawn at dusk, visibility is low. Me being one of them I decide to keep my distance, the diminutive artistic elements could be sensitive to clumsy eyes or just in case that mannequin decides to stand up I will have a clear path to the exit.
Not having read the description of this event, to my recollection, I am beginning to ask myself why I came. It’s all so random, even creepy. I have seen it before, weird for weird’s sake. I’m from the seminal days of Riddlin prescriptions: ahem, some of us wore mental disturbance like a badge not knowing you could get labeled for it.
A man comes forth subtly, gets the group’s attention with a well placed ‘auuh…’ and reluctantly grants us permission to sit on the floor if we preferred, or otherwise make ourselves comfortable. The gentleman wears a conservative zip-neck sweater that covers an Oxford, and aside from a slightly disheveled bush of hair is markedly non-descriptive; maybe he is the host, definitely not the artist. Expecting Marilyn Manson incarnate to ascend from the concrete floor below, the gentleman, Dynerman to my chagrin, initiates his talk.
Days of Grace
Born 6 years after the end of WWII to a Polish-Jewish father and Christian mother, Dynerman begins recounting the time period of his childhood in post-war Poland and France. “A lot of what we saw on television and in movies was about the war,” as if to understate a great preoccupation of the times, “we used the German words we heard when we played our games.” Sometimes Dynerman was a German soldier exhorting a courageous Pole playmate that defied the order to ‘halt’. Dynerman’s father was a holocaust survivor, doing so with Dynerman’s grandparents by living 18 months without leaving a family friend’s 10 X 10 cellar room. When the ordeal ended, he recounts that his father found none remaining from his former life and eventually moved to Paris where he met his mother before moving to Israel.
The picture slowly comes together during Dynerman’s discussion. The installation features multiple sculptures and miscellaneous tangible elements amply spaced on the walls, floor and on hand-made pedestals. Scanning the installation, heads, malformed torsos and eerily dismembered doll limbs slowly come to focus in the midst of small wooden shelters and platforms. However, small human figurines of laymen, by standers, and soldiers are the stars of this exhibit.
One figurine stands roughly two inches tall and is dwarfed by two quarter pieces of cinder block fused together, to form what looks like a giant high modern building on a European street corner. The figurine lonesomely steps onto a mock curb illuminated by a scaled-down model street lamp. Half-way across the room in the shadow cast behind the large endomorphic mannequin , a crowd of peach colored figurines bunches up when approached by an on coming hoard of evergreen tinted army soldiers with ranks that reach around to the lateral side of the mannequin’s wooden throne.
Is any one watching? Certainly not the mannequin who is content to glare forward, certainly not the fortunate peach figurines that are watching the small LCD displays flickering pretty colors in cozy wood enclosures. He reveals that this work’s subject matter is the holocaust, among other genocides as they have occurred as recently as this year.
Artist in Our Minds
A painter by trade and training Dynerman decided to deviate from his master craft into sculpture, to satisfy his want to delve into a medium with which he was always fascinated. “I always found mannequins interesting,” he utters. While reflecting on his decision not to incorporate several large paintings into to the piece, he wonders into a thought about how he preferred to have a stark white background for the exhibit so that the viewer could “wash their eyes” and refresh their minds before continuing to different parts of the gallery.
His philosophy is consistent and modest. Dynerman’s father and his father before him were tin craftsmen. In ode to his memories, fashioned metal street lights in various scaled-states frequently dot the dusky hall punctuating the tiny dramatic scenes in perpetual suspense. His conversation trickles English with an endearing thick native Polish-speaking accent, “I grew up around a shop so I always liked building things… the things you see here, the pedestals, the table…. are all built by hand…and when I build them I craft them to the extent that they serve the purpose that they are built for and not more.” He’s right staining the woodwork would look contrived.
There is quite a bit of irony here and the use of scale is apparent in the exhibition. Located on the table opposite the seat-perched mannequin is a 3-foot-tall tin model of the Eiffel tower flanked by miniature coniferous trees. Dynerman shares that his father retained his love for Paris, even while in Israel, and constructed the model of the famous structure as a gift to Dynerman. To use the iconic landmark often revered for its invocation of love and freedom as a backdrop for his mini-theatre, is a brilliant twist on reality. “I have no sensible response,” he offers when I asked if there is a deeper meaning to the use of scale in his art. “I think that somehow the viewer may have more empathy [for small doll-like figures],” his tone is somewhat playful when making this remark as if he is omitting something from a secret recipe. I think he has discovered a way to mock human cognition into choosing its own adventure instead of spoon-feeding perceptions.
For Dynerman, by his own admission, simply “painting death” seemed inappropriate. Lucky for us we are able to see Dynerman’s motion picture snap-shot of the human condition projected on the adjacent wall from the point of view of a remote-camera-equipped model train, scurrying on the table behind the omnipotent mannequin, alongside the madness of the evergreen aggressors converging on innocent peach crowds, turning with the track to a straight away with a small mirror positioned like a billboard capturing the face of the mannequin in the reflection, then futilely hustling past a neon blue filament-lit carousel that upon closer examination is housing a series of severed doll feet and legs protruding from the inner cylinder of the amusement park favorite, only to endlessly repeat the circuit as if to take the spectator on a whimsical reoccurring nightmare. If you are paying attention, it is surreal. Train Project is on display at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Union Gallery from January 26 – February 27, 2009.