Past Visiting Artists

Chie Fueki
Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Chie Fueki - who was born in Japan, grew up in Brazil, and now lives in the United States - utilizes far-ranging imagery in her paintings, from chrysanthemums, owls, and cranes to professional athletes and symbols of popular culture. Although anchored by specific cultural histories, she twists traditional imagery into novel creations with dazzling color and luscious ornamental surfaces. Fueki builds her paintings' quilt-like surfaces by staining Japanese Mulberry paper with colored inks and embellishing them with washes of pigment and graphite rubbings. The paper is then collaged onto wooden panels over which she continues to apply colored pencil, iridescent materials, and acrylic paint to create dense and colorful works. With the final layer of paint, she builds forms using a type of neo-Pointillism: thousands of tiny dabs create a palpable Braille-like surface across her paintings. Her work has been featured in exhibitions across the country, most recently in solo exhibitions in California and New York.

Haim Steinbach
Wednesday, November 12, 2008

For over thirty years, the sculptor Haim Steinbach has used shelves in his work to submit everyday objects to a new level of artistic scrutiny. Fascinated by the shared social ritual of collecting, arranging, and presenting objects, Steinbach originally culled used goods from flea markets and yard sales for his art works. He began displaying similar items side by side on a shelf, carefully arranging them according to their potential social or cultural connotations. Far beyond readymades, his works not only underline the aesthetic aspects of everyday objects but can also function like language: since the items were invented for our own use, we can communicate through them. The objects become signifiers of personal and social identity and, in the absence of the owner(s), the possessions become the only existing indicators of their identity. Haim Steinbach's work has been shown around the world, with recent exhibitions in Paris, Milan, Los Angeles, Berlin, London, New York, and Tokyo.

Gregory Crewdson
Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Renowned photographer Gregory Crewdson is best known for his elaborately staged, surreal scenes of American homes and neighborhoods. Crewdson's almost cinematic photographs - reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock's films and Edward Hopper's paintings - often impart to viewers a sense of impending crisis. The moody and enigmatic atmospheres, combined with a suggested narrative, allow the viewers to develop and project their own theories about the inscrutable drama within the works. Crewdson has published several books of his photographs and has exhibited widely in the United States and Europe. His work is in many public collections, including New York's Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. He has received numerous awards including the Skowhegan Medal for Photography, the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and the Aaron Siskind Fellowship.

William Christenberry
Monday, October 20, 2008

Since the early 1960s, William Christenberry has plumbed the regional identity of the American South, photographing real things in the real world - ramshackle buildings, weathered commercial signs, lonely back roads, rusted-out cars, whitewashed churches, and decorated graves. Although he is known mostly for his color photography, Christenberry works in a range of media encompassing sculpture, drawing, painting, and found-object assemblage.

For the past four decades Hale County, Alabama, has been his subject. Returning to the same locations annually, the history and story of place has been at the heart of his oeuvre. Although the focus of his work is regional, it touches on universal themes relating to family, culture, nature, spirituality, memory, and aging. His work is in the collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington DC; J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Metropolitan Museum of Art; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

This talk is presented in conjunction with the exhibition William Christenberry: Photographs, 1961-2005 on view in the Bakalar Gallery

Bruce Yonemoto
Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Through photographs, installations, sculptures, and films, Bruce Yonemoto manipulates the boundaries of influence between art and commerce, mass media and cultural behavior. Growing up in post-World War II America, Yonemoto has an ongoing interest in the representation of Asian-Americans in pop-culture, television, films, and United States history. In a recent series, NSEW, Yonemoto appropriates American Civil War-era photographic portraiture as a vehicle to raise questions about war, servitude, and ethnic and national identities. During his twenty-year collaboration with his brother, Norman, Yonemoto has been honored with numerous awards and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the American Film Institute, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Maya Deren Award for Experimental Film and Video. His work has been featured in major one-person shows at the Intercommunication Center, Tokyo; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; and the Kemper Museum, Kansas City.

Dike Blair
Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Through the disparate media of painting and sculpture Dike Blair studies the relationships between architecture, the figure, and landscape. Painting intimate gouaches of women's eyes, Blair carefully observes their qualities as physical and symbolic membranes, one of the most direct ways to investigate both personality and philosophy. Through carefully placed sculptures that incorporate Isamu Noguchi's lamps, painted packing pallets, carpet, light-boxes, and extension cords, Blair references ikebana (the art of Japanese flower arranging) and its goal of perfect balance between disparate materials and forms.

In this series, as well as his paintings of parking lots, car interiors, and architecture, Blair says elements of "restraint and sublimation" run as a constant theme. The figural is present in the sculptural arrangements, the abstract in his photorealistic paintings, and harmonious formal relationships and the personal permeate his vision. Blair was included in the 2004 Whitney Biennial and has exhibited at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus; the Yale Univeristy Art Gallery, New Haven; among many others. He has written articles for publications such as ArtForum, Bomb, Flash Art, and Parkett.