'What's New In Still Life, Portrait, and Landscape' curated by John Yau now on view

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'What's New In Still Life, Portrait, and Landscape' curated by John Yau now on view
Lizzie Zelter, General Haus, 2023. Oil on canvas, 72 x 60 x 1 1/2 in (182.9 x 152.4 x 3.8 cm). Samuel Alexander Forest, b. 1998. Lunchbox, 2022, Graphite and colored pencils on paper, 11 in. × 10 in. × 10 in.



BOSTON, MA.- LaiSun Keane has mounted What’s New in Still Life, Portrait, and Landscape, a group exhibition curated by notable writer and poet John Yau, spotlighting emerging artists that keep the spirit of observational art with new innovations. This will be Yau’s second curated show with the gallery, on view from November 3 to Dec 23, 2023 with an accompanying exhibition essay.

While some may perceive art from direct observation as objective and academic, Yau argues that it is a deeply personal craft as no two individuals perceive the world identically. Yau expresses that this philosophy, more than any stylistic choices, lends originality and fresh appeal to these artists’ work.

Ranging from detailed paintings to trompe l’oeil inspired sculptures, the works in this exhibition capture fantasies, and inner reflections within everyday objects. Yau further states, “choosing to work in well-established genres that have a long and celebrated history is a challenge that requires both courage and self-confidence, especially when the viewer is likely to be up to date on the latest developments in art.”

What’s New… features a diverse list of artists: Lauren Petrick Brooks, Kevin Cobb, Abigail Dudley, Samuel Alexander Forest, Calvin Kim, Meghan Murray, and Lizzie Zelter, all who are showing for the first time with our gallery.

Lauren Petrick Brooks is an artist whose work explores the concept of intimacy and how intimacy comes to be. Her paintings and drawings are investigations, appreciations, and conversations that extend a hand to the viewer to feel the complexities of companionship and relationship. She holds an MFA in Painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art as well as a BFA in Studio Art from the University of Texas at Austin. Her work is in held in numerous private collections, and has been shown in institutions and exhibitions throughout the US.

Kevin Cobb is a painter and digital artist, born in Baltimore, MD and based in New York City. He received his HSD from the Carver Center for Arts and Technology, his BFA from The Maryland Institute College of Art, and his MFA from Columbia University. Through oil paintings, drawings, animations, and 3D Art, he explores identity and perspective, technology and art-making, beliefs and truth.

Abigail Dudley is an artist interested in observing light and distilling figures located in interior living spaces into images, chronicling how people occupy space and how a space reflects personal presence. Her works are influenced by Italian frescos, and aim to act as a form of resistance against a culture centered around mass production. She received her BFA from the Philadelphia Academy of the Fine Arts and completed a residency in Tavira, Portugal.

Samuel Alexander Forest maintains a primarily drawing-based practice. Through the book, video, and sculpture mediums, he pays special attention to overlooked everyday objects and reflects on moments of poetry and humor. Wholly earnest yet absurdist, his works that live in between the second and third dimension serve as autobiographical vessels of absences and memories. Forest received his BFA from The Cooper Union in 2021 and is currently a MFA candidate at NYU Steinhardt.

Calvin Kim makes paintings and sculptures that engage questions of time, memory, and transformation as they persist within the layers of natural and manmade materials. His paintings often use humor, softness, and stupidity as an emotive stance for the rupturing condition of everyday living with hope and wonder. Kim holds a joint BFA and BA in Psychology from Cornell University and an MFA from Columbia University. He currently lives and works in New York.

Meghan Murray is an artist, educator, and administrator based just outside of Boston, MA. She received her BS in Studio Art from Skidmore College in 2016 and her MFA in Painting from Boston University in 2022. Her representational painting practice embodies and simultaneously intervenes upon historical tradition. She is a recipient of the 2022 Blanche E. Colman award for New England artists and was awarded second place in the 2023 Miami University Young Painters competition by juror John Yau.

Lizzie Zelter is a visual artist based between New York, NY and San Diego, CA where she directs and curates exhibits for Two Rooms, an artist-run gallery and experimental project space. She received her MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University’s School of the Arts in 2022 and a BA in Global Cultural Studies in the Program in Literature at Duke University in 2018. By utilizing reflection and fragmentation in her compositions, Zelter’s works morph scale and perspective to decontextualize and disguise the familiar.

Curator, John Yau

John Yau has published books of poetry, fiction, and criticism. His latest poetry publications include a book of poems, Further Adventures in Monochrome (Copper Canyon Press, 2012), and the chapbook, Egyptian Sonnets (Rain Taxi, 2012). His most recent monographs are Catherine Murphy (Rizzoli, 2016), the first book on the artist, and Richard Artschwager: Into the Desert (Black Dog Publishing, 2015). He has also written monographs on A.R. Penck, Jasper Johns, and Andy Warhol. In 1999, he started Black Square Editions, a small press devoted to poetry, fiction, translation, and criticism. He was the Arts Editor for the Brooklyn Rail (2007–2011) before he began writing regularly for Hyperallergic. He is a Professor of Critical Studies at Mason Gross School of the Arts (Rutgers University).- hyperallergic.com

LaiSun Keane
What’s New in Still Life, Portrait, and Landscape
November 3rd, 2023 - December 23rd, 2023
Curator, John Yau










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