Studio Vendome News

Harry Bertschmann visited by Greg Beechler

 

 

The video by Greg Beechler gives us a quick view into Harry Bertschmann’s process.  Upon visiting Bertschmann’s studio, Beechler immediately recognizes what he sees as a Swiss Influence.  Beechler states that Bertschmann’s paintings have “careful proportions” and contain a “limited” set of rules in which Bertschmann uses as a guide when creating the paintings.  Beechler’s tone seems to reveal his admiration in regards to Bertschmann’s use of “committed lines” with in the works.  Although his paintings sometimes tell us a story of hard edge and line, Bertschmann describes his process very differently.

Bertschmann speaks of his lack of need for a manifesto.  In regards to artists having a manifesto, he stated, “you might as well be stamping letters at the post office.”  In the video, we see Bertschmann at work in his studio.  It is through constant production and evaluation of his work where he finds content via detection of the elements that he produces.   Beechler quizzes Bertschmann about his varying form and line qualities by dividing them into two categories, hard edge and soft edge.  Bertschmann describes how these elements evolve through his process and inevitably end up in one of the two sub categories in regards to their relationship with the background and foreground.

Harry Bertschmann’s work is on view at Studio Vendome and Studio Vendome Projects now thru February 22, 2014

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Feldsott featured in the Huffington Post & Modern Painters!

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Harry Bertschmann: Abstract Dynamics opens January 15, 2014 at Studio Vendome

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NEW YORK – JANUARY 15 – FEBRUARY 22, 2014

VERNISSAGE:  WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm at Studio Vendome, 330 Spring Street, New York NY 10013

Studio Vendome begins the New Year with a compelling exhibition, “Harry Bertschmann: Abstract Dynamics.” Both Studio Vendome and Studio Vendome Projects will feature Bertschmann from January 14 through February 22, 2014. Studio Vendome, at 330 Spring Street, will present a six-decade survey composed of eleven large paintings on canvas plus sixteen works on paper in mixed media. Studio Vendome Projects, at 30 Grand Street, will focus on Bertschmann’s twenty-two smaller abstract works from his Haiku series.

Harry Bertschmann was born in Basel, Switzerland, in 1931 but has lived and worked most of his life in New York City. From 1947 to 1951, he studied at the Basel School of Design (Kunstgewerbeschule), an institution noted for its innovative use of fonts and colors in dynamic compositions. Bertschmann studied under Armin Hofmann, famous for having developed the Swiss Style in the graphic arts, and later apprenticed at the atelier of Fritz Bühler, the foremost innovator in conceptual graphic design.

In 1951 Bertschmann landed a job in Cleveland as a graphic designer and dedicated all of his spare time to developing his own abstract-expressionist style.  Success came early with a first prize at the Cleveland Museum of Art for one of his oil paintings.  And in 1958 he was accepted to exhibit at the Carnegie International, the prestigious international contemporary art survey exhibition in Pittsburgh. At only twenty-seven, Bertschmann was likely the youngest exhibitor, and one of his large canvases hung beside works by the first generation of the New York School who were at that time in their prime, such as Franz Kline (1910–1962,) Barnett Newman (1905–1970,) Mark Rothko (1903–1970) and Robert Motherwell (1915–1991.)

Bertschmann’s momentum was impeded soon after the Carnegie International when the US army drafted him, but he still found a way to paint. When he returned to the States, he settled in Greenwich Village.  There, he and his wife, Mary, started the Bank Street Press, an independent publisher of poetry and children’s books.  His wife served as editor and Bertschmann as designer. Still, painting remained his primary interest. One of the strong groups of his paintings from this period is called The Bank Street Paintings. 

However, because Bertschmann never actively sought gallery representation, few critical eyes became aware of his work.  It was not until 1986, when on a serendipitous studio visit, Henry Geldzahler, the former curator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, expressed great admiration.

In 1997 Swiss colleagues arranged for a Bertschmann retrospective at the Gewerbeverband Basel-Stadt.  The exhibition’s 140 works featured a wide range that illuminated the brilliance of Bertschmann’s double lives. His design life, that which supported him, produced numerous graphic designs of commercial logos and packaging, many of which have become iconic in our culture, such as those for Kent & Newport cigarettes, Pantene, Binaca, Nestlé and Bufferin. At the other end of the spectrum, his artistic life pushed the boundaries of abstract expressionism.

Now, for the first time, Bertschmann has agreed to a retrospective in New York at Studio Vendome in Hudson Square, West of SoHo. An opening reception will be held at 330 Spring Street on Wednesday, January 15th from 6pm to 9 pm. For the event art historian and critic Robert C. Morgan, who has written a critical essay on Bertschmann, will engage the artist in a conversation beginning at 7pm.

The galleries of Studio Vendome uniquely showcase the works of late-career artists and artist’s estate collections that deserve greater critical recognition. Peter Hastings Falk, the noted art historian and art reference publisher, is curator of these rediscovered artists’ exhibitions, which are part of the unprecedented “Rediscovered Masters” series. An Art Advisory Board composed of distinguished museum directors, curators, historians, and critics elect artists.

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Rafal Olbinski's “The Virtue of Ambiguity” opens DECEMBER 11, 2013 from 6pm to 9pm at Studio Vendome

Rafal Olbinski, internationally acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest living Surrealist painters, will be exhibiting at two new galleries in SoHo. Studio Vendome is located in architect Philip Johnson’s Urban Glass House at 330 Spring Street. It is featuring 30 larger Olbinski oils on canvas. The second gallery, Studio Vendome Projects, is located at 30 Grand Street and is exhibiting 13 smaller-formated oils on canvas. The shows will run from December 11, 2013 to January 11, 2014.

The show’s curator, Peter Hastings Falk, points out that Olbinski was recently elected to the “Rediscovered Masters” exhibition series by an Art Advisory Board composed of distinguished museum directors, curators, historians, and critics. A hardcover book, The Virtue of Ambiguity, is being published for the exhibition and will be released at the opening reception to be held on Wednesday, December 11th from 6-9 pm. Profusely illustrated, the book includes essays by the renowned art critic Robert C. Morgan and Olbinski’s biographer, Izabela Gabrielson.

Born in Kielce, Poland in 1945, Olbinski studied architecture before dedicating himself to painting and poster design. In 1970 he became art director of Jazz Forum, the iconic international jazz magazine founded in Poland in 1965. He was a key member of the Polish School of Posters, which exerted a significant influence upon international graphic design. In 1981, when martial law was declared in Poland, Olbinski happened to be in New York attending an exhibition of his work at The Polish Institute of Arts & Sciences of America (PIASA). Unable to return to Poland, he was surprised to have found himself “trapped” in America, the promised land of freedom for many immigrants.

Settling in New York, Olbinski quickly won wide recognition for his large series of surreal posters created for the New York Opera and for numerous magazine covers for hundreds of publications such as Newsweek, Time, Business Week, Atlantic Monthly, Omni, The New York Times, New Yorker and many others. Like the great Surrealists before him, Olbinski views the mind as a theater of dreams and his resulting images as maps of the interior of the mind. These images are layered with psychological complexity, but they emit a poetic resonance that finds universal appeal. The comparisons are most often with Magritte — and this has earned him the epithet, “Prince of Surrealism.” When art critic Robert C. Morgan met Olbinski in his Manhattan studio, his first impression was that, “Somehow these compressed, old world quarters seem to match perfectly with Olbinski’s brilliantly complex and paradoxical imagery, filled with mutated classical-style figures, fish, birds, buildings, costumes, and incredible landscapes.”

Olbinski has won more than one-hundred awards, including gold medals from the Society of Illustrators and the Art Directors Club of New York; and comparable awards in London and Paris. In 1994 he was awarded the World’s Most Memorable Poster by UNESCO. In 1995 his poster, New York, Capital of the World, was chosen for Zagat. He also designed two Earth Day posters. His works are in many museum collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in Japan, Library of Congress Print Collection in Washington, D.C., the Carnegie Foundation in New York, the National Arts Club in New York, and various corporate and private collections.

The galleries of Studio Vendome are uniquely positioned to showcase late career artists and artist estate collections deserving greater critical recognition. They opened in September by Antonio Vendome, chairman of the Vendome Group. These eponymous galleries are located in West SoHo’s burgeoning Hudson Square district. Mr. Vendome’s vision for approaching the art world in a different way was developed during the 1980s and 1990s owing to his close professional relationship with Philip Johnson, the great modernist American architect. The Manhattan real estate developer explained, “Philip Johnson designed the critically acclaimed ‘Habitable Sculpture’ which I intend to build one day to continue his legacy and establish the true value of architecture as art, which will highlight Johnson’s lasting impact on the American landscape.” Vendome’s overarching initiative is therefore to present visually compelling exhibitions for both galleries.

“Cries, Chants, Shouts and Whispers: Songs of the Forgotton”

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An Exhibition by Yisrael K. Feldsott

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October 16 – November 23, 2013
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 17th, 6-9 pm
Discussion with Yisrael Feldsott and curator Peter Selz at 7 pm

NEW YORK – “Cries, Chants, Shouts and Whispers: Songs of the Forgotten,” the first New York exhibition of paintings by Bay Area artist Yisrael K. Feldsott will be on view at Studio Vendome and Studio Vendome Projects — two, new New York galleries — from October 16th through Nov 23rd, 2013. Feldsott’s early works from the 1970s will be on view at Studio Vendome Projects at 30 Grand Street, while the larger recent paintings will be featured at Studio Vendome’s main gallery at 330 Spring Street.

There will be an opening reception at both galleries on Thursday, October 17th from 6-9 pm. At 7 pm there will be a discussion at Studio Vendome on Spring Street with Feldsott and Peter Selz, the exhibition’s curator and former Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture of MoMA, New York and Founding Director of the Berkeley Art Museum.

Feldsott’s paintings defy easy categorization. The work, produced over 4 decades, was born from a life on the fringes of our culture, from interacting with drug addicts, beat
poets, and Rock musicians to becoming an advocate of indigenous peoples and working with tribal leaders in South America and Mexico. This exhibit highlights Feldsott’s incredible artistic journey and showcases Peter Selz’s personal selections of Feldsott’s visceral and prolific body of work.

“When I first saw Feldsott’s work in a San Francisco gallery, I was just astonished,” said curator Peter Selz, “I hadn’t seen anything like that before — and I’ve seen a lot! I had not seen anything quite that magical. The work really made you stop in your tracks. There’s a quality of mystery and, at the same time, it is beautifully executed.”

In the 1970s, Feldsott had the distinction of being the youngest artist to ever display his works at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and seemed destined for stardom.
He was one of the first artists to link the modern art world with the grittiness of graffiti — art that was deemed “without merit” in the early seventies. Sandra Roos, a noted art historian in the Bay Area, said of his role in that movement, “Feldsott was like the Matisse of the (then emerging) punk art scene.” But Feldsott quickly became disillusioned with the hyper-political art scene. Issues of censorship and commercialism drove him to stop showing his work publicly for two decades.

In 2002, after more than two decades of refusing to show his work publicly, the curator of the Museo Guayasamín in Quito, Ecuador, convinced Feldsott to return to the art world he had abandoned with a major museum exhibition.
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LAW AND ORDER, mixed media on wood.                 MEDICO, mixed media on wood.

During the last decade, Feldsott has continued to show in San Francisco, Santa Fe, and Los Angeles. However, “Cries, Chants, Shouts and Whispers: Songs of the Forgotten” is the first exhibition to travel to multiple cities. It began its journey in August in San Francisco at the non-profit Meridian Gallery before traveling on to the Studio Vendome galleries in New York’s SoHo. This exhibition is also a homecoming for Selz, whose groundbreaking museum exhibitions are legendary. The show is managed and
presented by Rediscovered Masters.

An illustrated, 86-page catalogue accompanies the exhibition with an insightful essay by art critic Robert C. Morgan. Morgan calls Feldsott “A born rebel, a pariah in search of his own standards. On another level, his point of view as an artist is not outside the parameters of recognized criteria that connoisseurs would choose to call significant. His paintings are less about art as a detached postmodern idea than about the artist’s uncanny mediumistic ability to simply allow works of art to evolve.” The essay also includes Selz’s extensive interview with the artist. “Cries, Chants, Shouts and Whispers” is all about eliciting primal reactions in the viewer and nothing about deciphering the jargon of art market insiders.

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WHEELS OF DEMOCRACY, mixed media on wood.

My Way, Appropriating

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PRESS RELEASE: NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 27, 2013
Studio Vendome is pleased to announce My Way, Appropriating, an evening of art and performances.

Performances by
Crystal Curtis
Jason Martin
Lady Starlight
Rachel Mason

On October 5, 2013 at 5pm
330 Spring Street, NYC
Curated by Vanessa Albury, Associate Director

Crystal Curtis, Jason Martin, Lady Starlight and Rachel Mason will perform in response to Geoffrey Mossʼ painting directly and indirectly. My Way, Appropriating bridges two generations of artistic practices through shared interests in forms, politics, history and image-making. Crystal Curtis will perform “Why is Andre Breton Such an Asshole?” a 10-minute, lecture-style performance that’s has evolved over the last 12 months. Because the founder of Surrealism not only “broke Tristan Tzara’s heart” but also “broke up the band,” Crystal reflects on his brazen behavior to explore leadership, influence, and power. Jason Martin will present gender and species queer animal-human glam hybrid interpretations of Mossʼ work through movement and situation. Lady Lady Starlight, well-known for her collaborations with Lady Gaga, will present a sound-based response to Mossʼ paintings. Rachel Mason’s character FutureClown will enter a trance induced by mashup of presidential speeches set to a dance track followed by the song, Blue Prelude on acoustic guitar.

Geoffrey Mossʼ current show titled Inappropriate Appropriations at Studio Vendome and his career as a Pulitzer-Prize-nominated political cartoonist are the source of inspiration for the evening of performances. Mossʼ works are inspired by Japanese shunga painting found in ukiyo-e color woodblock prints of the 17th and 18th centuries. Geoffrey Moss has led double lives for fifty years. The public knows him for his instantly recognizable style of searing political cartoons that appeared in the op-ed pages of the Washington Post for decades. Graduating with an MFA from Yale in 1964, Moss painted throughout his career and avoided exhibiting his paintings until now. Mossʼ oil paintings and mixed media on paper will be on view at Studio
Vendome through Oct 12th.

Join us for an engaging evening of performances art and the paintings of Geoffrey Moss.

Geoffrey Moss

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 “INAPPROPRIATE APPROPRIATIONS” BY GEOFFREY MOSS INSPIRED BY SHUNGA PRINTS

 

NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 17, 2013 –

No other influence upon the fine arts of Europe and America has been as profound as that exerted by the great Ukiyo-e artists of Japan. Ever since the 1860s artists of the Western world have drawn great inspiration from the color woodblock prints of the Ukiyo-e artists, such as Hiroshige, Hokusai, and Utamaro. Japomisme had a pervasive influence upon the French Impressionist masters, including Monet, Degas, Renoir, Pissarro, Gauguin, and Van Gogh. The movement spread even quicker from Paris owing to the posters of Toulouse-Lautrec and Alphonse Mucha. The three most influential American masters were James McNeil Whistler, Arthur Wesley Dow, and Mary Cassatt. In architecture, Frank Lloyd Wright led the avant-garde with many structures that are indebted to the Japanese.

Whether in landscape or portraiture, artists have been inspired by Japanese composition, perspective, and color for the past 150 years.  But one theme within the Ukiyo-e movement that has been explored by very few is shunga, or erotica.

Studio Vendome in SoHo has unveiled “Inappropriate Appropriations” by Geoffrey Moss, which runs through Oct 12th.  This visually compelling body of work represents the artist’s most private and unseen paintings. The series’ reference point is the classic erotica imagery of Japanese shunga, a subject with which he first became familiar while working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. “I wanted to give this Japanese subject an American character…It’s a process of distillation in many steps” until the erotic image becomes abstracted yet still bearing a subliminal seduction.

Geoffrey Moss has led double lives for fifty years. The public knows him for his instantly recognizable style of searing political cartoons that appeared in the op-ed pages of the Washington Post for decades. He was nominated two times for the Pulitzer Prize and became one of the most sought-after illustrators in the country. No one knows that successful career was paralleled by his secret life as a brilliant abstract painter. In 1964, when he and his fellow students (who included Rackstraw Downes, Janet Fish, Brice Marden, and Richard Serra) graduated from Yale’s MFA program, Moss remained stubbornly independent and avoided exhibiting his paintings. When he met Peter Hastings Falk, the curator of this exhibition and founder of Rediscovered Masters, he was convinced otherwise. Falk points out that while Moss may have been pigeon-holed as an illustrator he stands firmly on equal footing with the best of the abstract painters of any generation.

The galleries of Studio Vendome are unique in that their exhibitions will showcase late career artists and artist estate collections deserving greater critical recognition. The shows are part of the unprecedented “Rediscovered Masters” series, whose artists are elected by an Art Advisory Board composed of distinguished museum directors, curators, historians, and critics. Falk, also a noted art historian and art reference publisher, has planned the next ten art exhibitions for Studio Vendome, some of which first showed at art museums and non-profit art centers from across the country.

Antonio “Nino” Vendome, chairman of the Vendome Group, recently opened two new art galleries under his name located in West SoHo’s burgeoning Hudson Square district. The first gallery, Studio Vendome, is located in architect Philip Johnson’s Urban Glass House at 330 Spring Street. It is featuring 12 oils on canvas plus 12 works on paper. The second gallery, Studio Vendome Projects, is located at 30 Grand Street across from The James hotel, and it is featuring 12 smaller format works on paper that are studies for the oils.

Mr. Vendome’s vision for approaching the art world in a different way came during the 1980s and 1990s owing to his close professional relationship with Philip Johnson, the great modernist American architect. The Manhattan real estate developer explained, “Philip Johnson designed the critically acclaimed ‘Habitable Sculpture’ which I intend to build one day to continue his legacy and establish the true value of architecture as art, which will highlight Johnson’s lasting impact on the American landscape.” Vendome’s overarching initiative is therefore to present visually compelling exhibitions for both galleries.

Vendome is also affectionately known for his “Nino’s Restaurant 9/11 Relief Fund” where he transformed his family restaurant in to a relief center for first responders and others at the World Trade Center site where he served tens of thousands of free meals to Ground Zero workers for seven months following 9/11.