The 2019 art season begins with a week of several particularly intriguing exhibition openings and the final days of equally intriguing exhibitions. Because of the necessity of highlighting shows in both categories, I am in the strange position of unreservedly recommending exhibitions I have not seen, solely on the basis of the artists in them and the publicity surrounding them.
It will be good to see work by two artists previously not exhibited in Atlanta — the distinguished African American abstract painter Deborah Dancy (just opened at Marcia Wood Gallery) and Memphis painter Hamlett Dobbins (opening at Whitespace on Friday). I am also eagerly awaiting MOCA GA’s Friday night presentation of a selection of works on paper by the veteran Atlanta artist Sidney Guberman that were recently added to the museum’s holdings.
Because of the air of ambitious mystery surrounding Phantoms and Soft Time, which opens tonight at Swan Coach House Gallery, I am eager to learn what curator Iman Person of Qualia Projects means when she writes that the work by Arianna Khmelniuk and Wihro Kim uses “performance, scent and painting” to “awaken relationships between the viewer and the work, which. . . catalyze other dimensions.” The single photograph made available as publicity only serves to whet viewer interest.
I am particularly interested in what Mason Fine Art misleadingly describes as a “January group exhibition” also opening tonight, which consists of a gallery-filling installation of dramatic new, cosmically metaphoric work in Corrina Sephora’s Between the Deep Blue Sea and the Universe (described in some detail in a companion article); new work by a select group of gallery artists; and an exhibition, curated by Kelly Syed, of of Sephora’s fellow artists who have studios at the Goat Farm: Maggie Davis, Leisa Rich, Katie Troisi, Susan Ker-Seymer, Karen Tunnell, Richard Pepe, Eleanor Neal, Janine Monroe, Linda Mitchell and Lauren Betty.
Open through Friday, SuperNatural at Oglethorpe University’s Conant Performing Arts Center is an exhibition that is an unusual collaboration among three increasingly well-known artists whose work seems sufficiently dissimilar that it is surprising that they should have decided that their personal energies could combine in a way that they consider both “supernatural” and “super natural,” if the capitalization and spacing is to be taken seriously.
Jeffrey Wilcox Paclipan and Ron Saunders are known for differing styles of abstraction, while Lynx Nguyen has become famed for meticulous monochromes made with dozens if not hundreds of ballpoint pens per work, affixed in sets of three to drill bits. Their collaborative decisions reveal unsuspected dimensions that only intensive collaboration on an artist-planned exhibition can make appear.