Greene County Council on the Arts (GCCA) launches its 2018 season with “Ginnie Gardiner & Martin Katzoff: Conversations in Color.” The concept of the exhibition came from a pairing of the two artists’ works at the Patricia Field ArtFashion show in October 2017 by production designer Geoff Howell. GCCA’s Visual Arts Director, Niva Dorell, was struck by the similarities in gesture and flow between the two artists’ vibrant paintings, which seemed to talk to each other from across time and canvases. Gardiner and Katzoff, both Catskill residents, will participate in an Artist Talk about painting and color during the exhibition. They will also be present at the opening reception, which will be held on Saturday, January 27 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm at GCCA’s gallery, immediately following the GCCA Annual Membership Meeting. GCCA’s gallery is located at 398 Main Street, Catskill, NY. Both events will be free and open to the public.
Gardiner’s large-scale oil paintings in Conversations in Color are from her “Talking with Tiepolo” series that she created in the late 1990’s. Inspired by Baroque master Giambattista Tiepolo (1696-1770), this series resulted in two solo exhibitions in New York and Minneapolis in 2000, and depicts images fusing Baroque references with a range of contemporary images in layered pictorial spaces, producing paintings rich in color and dramatic figuration. Gardiner cites a passage from ‘Tiepolo and the Pictorial Intelligence,’ written by Svetlana Alpers and Michael Baxandall, as a perfect summation of her personal approach to creating these images: “The mind plays with images, and they can take different forms: figures can drift between two and three dimensions before full recognition; they are curiously medium-free; they can move in slow motion…the array displays a coherence, but is strange or bizarre; time is not an issue.” Tiepolo’s amazing frescos, and Gardiner’s connection with them, can be explored further on her website’s ‘Visual Thinking’ blog ‘Time Traveling With Tiepolo’: http://ginniegardiner.com/visual-thinking/.
Martin Katzoff’s paintings in Conversations in Color, from his Untitled Exploration series, are more abstract than Gardiner’s, but no less vibrant or rich in texture. A printmaker as well as painter, Katzoff primarily creates from a place of intuition. With this series, he says he was attempting to access a roadmap to a subconscious perception of experience of reality, and conveying a sense of freedom and openness in how they are Interpreted. “Each painting represents the release of anxieties with the objective of moving through time, some figural elements represent interpreted personal experiences, but the main objective of the series was to loosen up and go along for the ride.”